By the time Pokemon in the context of video games is brought up, most people are starting to discuss the main entries in the series. While these sell the best and are the driving force behind the franchise on this medium, it has also seen some excellent derivative and secondary titles over the years.

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Of all the Pokémon games, which are the best that have been released in the past 5 years? It’s time to take a look at Metacritic to figure out what the answer to this question is and shine a light on some of the lesser-known titles thanks to the release of Pokemon Sword & Shield.

Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Rescue Team DX (68)

pokemon mystery dungeon rescue team

So in 2005 Pokemon released the first titles of its Mystery Dungeon spinoff series and one was Blue Rescue Team and the other was Red Rescue Team. The roguelike role-playing games weren’t perfect, but fans enjoyed having a unique Pokémon experience. In 2020, a remake of these two games in one was released, titled Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Rescue Team DX. Its metacritic score of 68 may not sound like great, but it’s good enough to make it the second best game in the spinoff series.

Pokémon GO (69)

pokemon go

With the current state of the world and the pandemic forcing people to stay at home, it’s hard to remember what 2016 was like. By the time Pokemon GO was released as an augmented reality mobile game, people came out en masse in search of their favorite Pokémon. For a while, the nostalgia took hold and no one cared that he had a 69 on Metacritic. Although it reached its peak in 2016, the game is still home to millions of players and is constantly hosting new events and adding Pokémon and additional features.

Pokémon Super Mystery Dungeon (69)

pokemon super mystery dungeon

While browsing the Pokemon video game catalog, the last genre people would expect to come across is a roguelike. Nintendo has a habit of creating a newer version or a sequel to a franchise of a game and just adding the word “awesome” somewhere in the title.

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Pokemon Super Mystery Dungeon is a prime example of this practice. With a metacritic score of 69, that’s good enough to make it the best game in the spin-off franchise and what most consider the only one worth trying out in the Mystery Dungeon series.

Detective Pikachu (71)

detective pikachu

With the release of the movie of the same name, Detective Pikachu quickly became one of the most recognizable spin-off games in the Pokemon franchise. The game has players controlling a vocal talented Pikachu who must solve a mystery. It is an adventure game with a focus on the story as players try to put together clues. The gameplay and mechanics were its main weaknesses and weighed down the incredible parts of the game that were loved by critics. He currently has an overall score of 71 on Metacritic with a sequel in development.

Pokémon Picross (75)

pokemon picross

Picross is a video game series that has dipped its toes into several franchises, and the Pokemon version is a beloved fan favorite. It was released on the Nintendo 3DS as a global release in 2015 and reviews were generally favorable, resulting in a metacritic average of 75. The game allows players to create images via nonograms, which are puzzle grids. based on numbers, which, when solved, cause the player being treated to a wonderful picture of some sort. Some reviewers found the game too difficult to recommend across the board.

Pokkén DX Tournament (79)

pokken dx tournament

While the Pokemon series has the concept and action of fighting at its heart, the idea of ​​a Pokemon-centric fighting game was never considered an eventuality. The announcement of the Pokken tournament took the world by storm as there was a fighting game that lacked the input of a trainer that both fighting game and Pokemon fans could enjoy. The game currently sits at 79 on Metacritic and has been given an upgraded port for the Nintendo Switch that aptly titled Pokken Tournament DX and has improved on some of the game’s flaws.

Pokémon Let’s Go Pikachu and Eevee (80)

pokemon let go

When Pokemon Let’s GO Pikachu & Eevee were announced, fan bases immediately split. While they were also meant to serve as a bridge between the mobile hit known as Pokemon GO and the main titles, diehard fans feared that the “watered down” experience was the future of the series.

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It’s no surprise that a modern casual remake of Pokemon Red & Blue landed with an 80 on Metacritic given how popular these original titles have been since their release in 1998.

Pokémon Sword and Shield (80)

pokemon sword shield

Pokemon Sword & Shield are both the latest entries in the main series as well as the first main games to launch on the Nintendo Switch. The Wilderness Area was a large adjacent open-world play area that was made possible by the extra power provided by Nintendo’s handheld system. The games failed to live up to high expectations, but still managed to introduce a handful of new ideas that will likely be part of the core design philosophies that the franchise will hopefully implement in the future. to beat the Metacritic score of 80.

Pokemon Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon (84)

pokemon ultra sun moon

Instead of releasing a 3rd entry titled something like Pokemon Eclipse, the studio and publisher went for a new kind of mid-gen version instead. Pokemon Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon added more to the postgame and introduced Ultra Beasts. Overall, the titles were seen as neat versions that didn’t do much to improve the original versions. Despite the score of 84 on Metacritic, many fans are critical of the way the mid-gen refresh was handled for the 7th gen.

Pokemon Sun and Moon (87)

pokemon sun moon

It may be surprising that the best Pokemon games of the past 5 years are Pokemon Sun & Moon. These titles introduced the world to the 7th generation of Pokémon games and took place on what is known as the Alolan Islands. The tropical setting was based on Hawaii and gave the franchise a whole new feature. Introducing the concept of regional shapes to already existing Pokémon opened the door for older fan favorites to get a breath of fresh air and helped the games score 87 on Metacritic.

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