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Pokémon Sun and Moon’s ‘call for help’ feature is painful for everyone involved

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Either a Pokémon is left broken-hearted or a trainer is in an endless battle

Pokémon Sun and Moon screenshots Nintendo/The Pokémon Company/Game Freak

The most divisive of Pokémon Sun and Moon’s new additions is the “call for help” mechanic, which either makes wild Pokémon encounters a real challenge or a real pain in the neck. Members of the Pokémon fan community aren’t shy about voicing their distaste for the feature — or mocking the lonely Pokémon for whom calling for help just doesn’t work — as much as possible since the games launched last Friday.

“Call for help” allows enemy Pokémon to request reinforcements ad nauseam during a battle. This can make one-on-one affairs twice as tough, which is good for players who want a challenge. But it also makes them way longer, and it’s impossible to catch an opposing Pokémon if there are two in the field instead of one.

That’s left collectors frustrated more often than not, as they find themselves stuck in Pokémon battles from hell. All any good trainer wants to do is catch ‘em all, and some players find that the endless enemy back-up makes it very, very annoying to do that.

But there’s a silver lining ... of sorts. Pokémon trainers aren’t the only ones who can be spurned by the feature; Pokémon can be left in the lurch too, and that’s decidedly more painful. Calling for help only works a percentage of the time, and Pokémon may find themselves waiting for the battle buddy that just won’t come.

Some players are sympathetic to the plight of the lonely wild Pokémon without a friend in this world.

For the most part, however, Pokémon Sun and Moon is getting docked a few points by those who can’t for the life of them stand the relentless “call for help” maneuver. There are whole threads dedicated to griping about it on Reddit and GameFAQs, which players are content to use as a general complaints thread.

For those who’d rather stay positive, just remember that Pokémon Sun and Moon features Pokémon high-fives and encourages players to make their Pokémon happy. Those should keep them calm when a Zubat has successfully summoned aid in battle 14 times in a row.