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If You've Never Done A Pokemon Nuzlocke Run, You're Missing Out. Here's Why.

If you are a Pokemon fan and have spent any amount of time on the internet, you have probably heard about the Nuzlocke Challenge. Though many players have shared their love of the challenge, you might be hesitant to attempt it yourself since the rules are so stringent. You are only allowed to catch the first wild Pokemon you encounter in each new area, and you're in real trouble if it faints or flees. If any of your Pokemon faint, you can't use them again. You also must nickname every Pokemon on your team.

Nuzlocke runs are a far cry from the standard, beginner-friendly rules of Pokemon, and yet gamers flock to the challenge like a Heracross to honey. So, what is it about Nuzlocke runs that are so captivating? Why should you experience it for yourself? Here's what you are missing if you haven't participated in a Nuzlocke Challenge.

The Nuzlocke Challenge adds greater difficulty and depth

The strategy and luck involved in Nuzlocke runs turn an easy series of games into a grueling challenge. In normal gameplay sessions, you get infinite retries. You might need to grind out a few more levels so your Pokemon level up, but like Magikarp evolving into the mighty Gyarados, you eventually become nigh unstoppable. Not so in Nuzlocke runs.

If you perform a Nuzlocke run, you don't get second chances. If a Pokemon faints, you treat it as permadead and can't use it again. Thus, you need to adopt new approaches to make sure your team survives, as well as thrives. Part of the fun is overcoming challenges that might not ever crop up in a normal gameplay session (e.g., challenging a Rock-type Gym Leader with a team that, thanks to luck, crumbles before Rock-type moves). Moreover, Nuzlocke runs are about being patient and taking time to level up your team, all while ensuring you don't accidentally lose a Pokemon in the process.

The Nuzlocke Challenge, in a sense, channels the same difficulty that excites fans of the Soulsborne genre. Every bit of progress is earned, and every loss is probably your fault.

Forge a stronger bond with your Pokemon through the Nuzlocke Challenge

You may wonder just what is so fun about intentionally hamstringing yourself in Pokemon. The franchise is supposed to be about catching 'em all, handpicking the strongest, and demolishing the competition. Well, some believe the magic of the Nuzlocke challenge is that it makes you bond with your team.

If your Pokemon faint, that's it for them, so each battle becomes more nail-biting. Each loss is far more devastating because you took the time to personalize each member of your crew with a name — and because you can't replace them until you visit a new area. And, each close call is far more nerve wracking because, well, you were that close to permanently losing a Pokemon in your team. No more sacrificing a Pokemon with Explosion to secure a win.

Random luck determines your team, and it can just as easily take your team away if you aren't careful. This dependence on and defiance of luck forces you to work with what you've got and turn lemons into lemonade. Victory is sweeter when you have to struggle for it, as well as achieve it with a close-knit family of human and Pokemon.