Yes it’s Digi-time. The only debate that raged on school grounds more divisive than Sega or Nintendo was Digimon or Pokemon. Now I liked Pokemon, still do, but I love Digimon. Mainly I always viewed the two as completely different things. Pokemon was an RPG series that spawned shows, toys, games and virtual pets. Digimon was a virtual pet that spawned shows, toys, games and RPGs. As different as night and day really. In a literal they are the same but different colors sorta way. I have stayed fairly consistently into Pokemon only lapsing around Gen 3 for a bit until they brought back Kanto. Digimon on the other hand it goes through waves.
And it looks like a new tide has come in. I know they went back to the old show and finished up the plot in 2016-2018 in a series of movies. I know that they rebooted the original show as well. I haven’t watched any of that. I kinda stick to the games now, but they largely have been just RPGs stripping away the virtual pet mechanics that I love and don’t fully understand.
Now that pic ain’t wrong. Just it doesn’t go into the insanity of Digivolution. It’s based on how much attention they get, food, sleep, how much and often they are covered in poop. It’s not easy for people like me. I tend to not use guides especially ones that look like this.
It would require a damn Ken Burns documentary on Digimon to even make sense out of how this works. I just know like so many Christmas puppies I wanted one so bad, but once I got it I hate this thing. I mean I love it, just it’s inconvenient. It’s like if you got random texts from a friend who will flip out if you don’t reply in ten mins. Because that is how long you get to reply to a beep from the Digivice. Not to mention the 20th anniversary version added a bonus torture, er feature.
Two digimon, one cage and yes it’s a poop joke. They poop and scream and roll around in it. That’s about it. That said it’s cute fun and nostalgic. I can recommend buying one to have, but to play? Not really. Unless you have friends who also get a few. Then you can battle to solve arguments or settle who picks where lunch will be from. So the handhelds are skippable for the most part, unless you had one as a kid. Though then you’d already know what you are signing up for.
Digimon World on the other hand was awesome. It had the confusing Digivolution set up sure, but it has a world to explore with a story you want to finish. Not to mention your monster pal dies of old age so there is an urgency to explore that makes caring for them a delicate balance of progression and going back to town. It’s frustrating but rewarding. Exactly how a virtual pet monster friend experience should be. Beating that game was one of the hardest things I have ever done. Each game after was getting easier and easier. Sure I was getting better, but features were constantly being balanced. Until the games became almost completely devoid of the original mechanics. Which is fine, they all stand on their own merits. The ones I have played anyway. So the animes…
I have strong feelings about Digimon that isn’t season 1 and 2 of Adventure. The shows were made to sell the ever changing toyline. So they often tack in new mechanics and digidestined and worse of all Digital World. The place it all goes down in. They try later to say there are multiple DigiWorlds. I guess I can see it, if they expanded on that concept later that would be cool but then completely diminishes the original show in both scope and scale. It can’t be both Bandai. Either the digidestined are heroes of legend that saved two worlds, or it was some kids who saved the summer camp’s admissions computer. Some claim it’s all one large canon but not me. I think the plots are like the games, largely independent.
All that said none of it is bad. By my standards, which are industry standards, if you don’t like a certain concept or element of any one specific installment I almost promise it won’t show back up. Pokemon desperately holds onto each bad miss step and clunky choice so adamantly that it holds them back. Kinda, Sword and Shield were lacking in lots of regards. So can I recommend Digimon? I guess, I mean I like it. Will it come back up? Probably, I dunno I’m still sleepy from my birthday. I get Christmas, New Years, and then my birthday all a few days apart. During this time of year I get nostalgic so forgive my rant but I doubt I’ll get much a chance to just talk about Digimon, and how they very much are the Digital Champions. Like Power Rangers they would rather change and be there for the next generation of kids than stay the same and keep a fan base. I know it’s largely for money, but part of me knows there is a bit of heart in there. The games teach responsibility and the shows are little action dramas for kids that point out social skills and shortcomings. It even touches on religion because Digimon are digital not physical and they also die.
The series has always done it’s best to be entertaining and give a little bit of morals and hope to kids who are lonely enough for a digital pocket friend.