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Pokemon Masters officially released in August 2019. The game got tremendous popularity within a short span of time. But where is it leading? What is the future of Pokemon Masters? Let’s take a look!
Players were swift to voice issues with the game on social media platforms such as Twitter and Reddit. Commentators frequently compared Pokemon Masters unfavourably to other Nintendo franchise mobile competitors such as Intelligent System’s Fire Emblem Heroes or Cygame’s Dragalia Lost.
Much of the criticism of the game focused on a variety of issues ranging from a lack of rewards for completing content, a lack of content overall and issues with strategic depth in endgame content. A consensus grew that Pokemon Masters was wasting its potential. Well done animations and sincere nods to the characters that many of us had grown up with floating adrift in a sea of, frankly, incomplete content and poor design choices.
Which brings us to October 9th, 2019, Pokemon Masters Japanese twitter account released the following;
The tweet contains a link to a “Producer Letter” on Pokemon Master’s Japanese website. For those of you who can read Japanese, you can read the original statement here. On October 10, 2019, the Producer Letter was officially released in English. You can find the full text of the official translation here.
The Producer Letter
The gist of the Producer Letter is as follows. Producer Yu Sasaki announced that he would be bringing on another producer, Tetsuya Iguchi to help lead operations. Sasaki and Iguchi identified and apologized for three salient issues identified with the game;
- Mismanagement with respect to the handling of bugs within the game.
- Poor level design and an overall lack of content- especially with respect to the exclusionary construction of the EX Challenge levels.
- Unacceptably slow responses to feedback.
Sasaki furthermore addressed common customer complaints and affirmed that the team was currently making plans to look into them. He emphasized specifically concerns regarding; the lack of content, lack of rewards, poor level design, and poor user interface. Sasaki specifically clarified that active development was focused on improving rewards. Finally, Sasaki promised more transparent communication going forwards with a future Producer Letter scheduled for October 17, 2019.
This is a promising update from the Pokemon Masters team. It is validating to see a company managing a beloved franchise to respond to criticism levied against it and issue what appears to be a sincere apology. Responding effectively to criticism is crucial because for “every customer complaint there are 26 other unhappy customers who have remained silent” Lee Resources International. As consumers, we don’t have any incentive to complain about a service if we don’t like it. Unless of course we care about it and want to see it become better. DeNA, for the moment, appears to be listening to our voices, so keep on sending feedback and criticism their way!
At this point in time, we can only speculate on what will change. It is likely that not even Sasaki or anybody at DeNA knows for sure what the future holds. The Producer Letter makes reference to plans for ambitious changes addressing fundamental design elements of the game. Uncertainty aside, I feel that we can safely expect an increase in-game rewards and a reduction in VH EX boss resistances to allow more sync pairs to play a roll in end game content, especially “tech” sync pairs.
I can not tell you what the future holds for Pokemon Masters and the game certainly isn’t out of the woods yet. But the Producer Letter nonetheless gives hope for a bright future. Of course, actions speak louder than words and only time will tell if Sasaki and Iguchi can make good on these promises. So strap in, enjoy the ride and let’s see what October 17, 2019, has in store for us!
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