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Enjoyed Pokemon S/M more than Sw/Sh and X/Y

Which was the better game

  • X/Y

    Votes: 66 17.3%
  • Sun/Moon

    Votes: 143 37.4%
  • Sword/Shield

    Votes: 173 45.3%

  • Total voters


Oct 27, 2017
Hard disagree. Sword and Shield absolutely have a lot of issues, and they do double down on a lot of things I don't like about modern Pokemon. But it has my favorite batch of new Pokemon and my favorite ost in the series, which go a long way for me. And that's without even getting into the raids and QoL improvements; my partner and I have spent pretty much the entirety of the last two weekends doing raids, and it's probably the most fun I've had with Pokemon ever. Hell, it's the first Pokedex I've completed since gen 2.

I turned on my copy of Moon the other day to check on what were in my boxes and was shocked that I had only 33 hours in the game. Gen 7 were the games that had me convinced I had grown out of Pokemon, whereas gen 8 has me eagerly waiting for Galarian Corsola merchandise


Oct 25, 2017
Sun and Moon is a much better game than Sword and Shield and XY.

I spent more than 300 hours in both XY and SM and over 70 hours in Sword and Shield by the way. I'm not hater.

I think how barebones SWSH are only really shows at the League Tournament, from there onwards it becomes clear how undercooked everything was.

Story (and it sucks major ass) is completed and all you have left is a bunch of poorly implemented features.
Where I'm at. I like SwSh, but its pretty apparent it needed to cook longer. Think the opening was strong, but later felt like they ran out of time. All the times you would normally go off and do a dungeon they are like "let the adults handle it, u kids go do more gyms".
Just picked up Ultra Sun bc my Pokemon itch wasn't fully scratched.
Oct 25, 2017
Brooklyn, NY
In terms of story/characters, Sun/Moon was better than both for me. Despite me not liking the Hawaii setting. SwSh needed more time, I found myself growing bored multiple times and had to take breaks just to play other games. Which is the second time this ever happened to me, (first being Let's Go Pikachu) since I always play Pokemon games from start to finish with nothing stopping me or making me lose interest.


Oct 25, 2017
Can't comment about SwSh but SM was an enjoyable experience. The cast of character was great, being the highlights Lillie, Gladion and Lusamine; the islands were cool and loved the Z-moves. In fact, the cast was so good that it made me care for them, even Hau. The only games that made me care for the cast before was the BW duology.
My biggest complaint is how your MC has the same face expression. Always.

XY is a mediocre game. Perhaps with an hack increasing difficulty it might become more enjoyable, but vanilla game is disappointing.


Oct 27, 2017
X/Y > Sword/Shield > Sun/Moon

But I'm still on the beginning of Sword/Shield, so not sure if it can be first or go down to last.


Feb 6, 2018
I wish I felt the same way about the wild area as most people seem to. Since you can catch so many Pokemon from later routes earlier it made every route less exciting for me to explore. Im not a huge fan of it being a wide open field with random weather effects either. Pokemon has never had good post game content, but I never expected it to be me turning on the game at midnight to see if the weather is right for me to be able to catch new Pokemon.

Raids would be cool if I could actually match with anyone, but it seems like I would need an actual miracle for that to happen. This probably has to do with my NAT type and not the game, but it's still frustrating.

The story in Sw/Sh may be my least favorite too. Almost every character felt totally forgettable. People like to clown on Su/Mo's plot, but at least it felt like it had one that went in hand with it's vibrant world.

I guess I dislike Sw/Sh so much because Su/Mo seemed like they were trying some different things and got shredded for it so they went back to the old stuff, but took some steps back in the process. Hopefully I like what the next games in the franchise have to offer.


Oct 27, 2017
People finally realizing that Sun/Moon were actually great games huh. :p
Sword/Shield were ok but I have to admit that the story was shockingly barren in comparison to Sun/Moon. I swear if Sun/Moon didn't have all these interruptions every 5 minutes it would have been regarded higher.


Oct 27, 2017
Playing through SwSh definitely gave me a new appreciation for SM. I thought SM was just ok when I first played it (didn't play XY), but SwSh are worse in almost every aspect. Content, story, characters, level design, you name it.

Granted, are a few things SwSh do better. I like the encounter system and QoL improvements, and the spectacle of the gym battles is fun, even if the battles themselves are cakewalks.

But ultimately, SwSh feels unfinished. It's shockingly barebones in terms of content, and the game is insanely linear, and the cramming of 95% of the game's story into the last hour makes it seem like they completely forgot to put it in until the last minute.


Feb 13, 2019
All opinions, it's interesting to see this view. My opinion is that Sun & Moon were the weakest games in the series. I'm a huge Pokémon fan, have played competitively since 2004 and Sun/Moon is the only time that I didn't participate in tournaments. It just didn't feel good at all to me.


Jan 12, 2018
Sun and Moon was a bore and I couldn’t even bring myself to finish US/UM. I might like Gen 7 more if I skipped Su/Mo and played US/UM but alas, it didn’t do anything for me.

I’d rank it Sw/Sh > Su/Mo > X/Y. Also there’s no chance any of the previous games are better than Sw/Sh.


Nov 8, 2017
I agree. Second best story in the series, Alola is one of the best regions, inspired new designs/mechanics. If Ultra Sun/Moon were as fleshed out in terms of improving the base game as Black/White 2 it would be a strong contender for my favorite gen outright, as is it's pretty mid-tier without that. I do wish it were less handholdy but I greatly prefer that to not really doing anything ala Sword/Shield.

Future Gazer

The Fallen
Oct 26, 2017
Yep, Sun/Moon are easily the best modern Pokemon games. Alola is vastly more interesting than Kalos and Galar and has the best batch of new Pokemon. Story and characterization is lightyears better.

Sun/Moon also look pretty good for 3DS games, all things considered, while X/Y and especially Sword/Shield are complete technical embarrassments.
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Nov 1, 2017
It's too hard to choose, they are the three worst generations of games. I think I lean towards SWSH just because of some good ideas and QoL changes but it would need some really good updates to be get it out of its bottom tier feel.

The good for me is:

XY - PSS, Fairy type and early "end game" pokemon
SM - Ultra beasts and no HMs
SWSH - Music, raids*, and wild area*

*still debating this due to poor execution and matchmaking


Oct 31, 2017
Lancaster PA
I liked SWSH music, art, and theme the best. The story only got interesting at end of game/post game. Also I wish whole game had intense battles like Leon or Hops final battle(post game) which actually had to make me think about pokemon to switch in. Everything else in game was steamroll. I haven't gotten competitive pokemon yet for battle tower or pvp so I'll see how that goes. SWSH wins for me on art and music. The performance and graphics in wild area is an embarrassment though.


The Fallen
Oct 25, 2017
All have insufferable stories and one-dimensional characters. I guess SM are at least tolerable in that regard.

In terms of gameplay, SwSh introduced the as-yet smoothest experience with the most QoL improvements. The Wild Area is also a step in the right direction for the franchise. It still feels unpolished, though. There's a lot of room for improvement.


Oct 29, 2017
Where’s the vote for “I haven’t enjoyed a Pokemon game since B/W”?

I think all the three last mainline games have been stinkers of varying degrees honestly.

Doc Kelso

Oct 25, 2017
Pokémon Moon was the first game in a long time where I went, “Wait, why am I doing this?” And then made the active decision to drop the game. Usually I just taper off or forget about a game that’s boring me, but Moon was incredibly dull and refused to give me breathing room to engage with it.


Oct 26, 2017
The Netherlands
Sun and Moon were far better and more complete games than Sword and Shield for sure. I'm really enjoying my time with Sword and I've already put in over 100 hours, but there is no denying that the game is bare bones in terms of content and has a ton of glaring issues. The only reason that I'm putting in this many hours is that for the first time it feels like competitive play is somewhat approachable due to quality of life changes. It still means that I'm driving in front of a day care center hatching eggs for 50+ hours though...


Oct 27, 2017
I think it’s interesting how most Pokémon fans are in agreement that the series has gotten worse over time.

I think it explains some of the resentment we’re seeing. Of course, some people have taken it to ridiculous lengths with death threats and trying to catfish reporters with fake stories of abuse.


Oct 27, 2017
SM has Lillie so it wins. SwSh does have some likable characters though like Bede. XY is like the worst Pokémon game imo.


May 17, 2019
X/Y are my pick. I think the overall structure of the game feels the most similar to previous games, which is a plus for me. I can turn off Exp Share, turn off my brain, and play through it and still get a close-ish approximation to what I used to love in the series. Also had the best playthrough in the release window due to online features that blow away the other two.

Sun/Moon weren't bad on a first playthrough, but they're absolutely dreadful to go back to due to the incredible amount of railroading and pointless dialogue. They're the games I'd least want to revisit. Doesn't help I don't really see the great story here others see.

Sword/Shield are probably the worst actual games of the three, feeling bare bones in more than a few places. The smaller amount of terrible dialogue and stoppages makes me more likely to revisit these games than I am Sun/Moon, but the forced Exp Share makes me less likely to revisit them than X/Y.


Jan 12, 2018
X/Y and Sun/Moon (and ultras) are the only pokemon games I haven’t beaten and it’s because I just wasn’t enjoying playing them. I beat Sword/Shield the first week I had it. Needless to say I found Sword and Shield to be better.


Feb 10, 2019
Sun moon's wild battle, trainer battle theme ( the two themes that we hear all the time in every game) were best among the three though.


Oct 25, 2017
Sun/Moon's campaign stomps the other two so hard it's not funny. Actual semblance of a story, better characters (Hau is great), interesting scenarios, neat atmosphere, and the best boss battles in the series with the Totems. Music is better as well. Post-game none of them are great, but the Battle Tree is far superior than X/Y's Maison and especially Sword/Shield's Tower + Raids. As far as online integration goes X/Y wins on that front, but Sun/Moon still has most of its functionality, just in an inconvenient package. Sword/Shield can't even say it's an improvement over DS games.

The one thing Sword/Shield does have over the others is its ease in raising competitive mons. That's definitely better (though not always, restting EVs looks to be a pain), but the actual meta isn't looking great so far. I guess it also has the box everywhere feature (nice QOL, but they're missing several other features) and Pokemon on the overworld (not terrible, but still a really basic implementation right now). So it's basically carried by the formula plus being on the Switch.


Oct 25, 2017
+It felt like a celebration of the Pokemon series, and quite rightly so it's the 20th anniversary game
I'm sorry, but nope. It felt like a celebration of Kanto. Sure, SWSH panders to Kanto, but it never goes as far as XY and SM. It feels like every regional mon is represented somewhere here and the new Galar Pokémon never take a back seat to older mons like Eevee or Pikachu. (seriously, anyone remembers how Pidgey was programmed to be XY's first encounter? That's garbage)


Nov 6, 2019
North of Boston
this thread has been a delight to read.

i played, and finished, red back when it came out and I was 15 at the time.

almost every mainline pokemon game i've tried, i've bounced off.
this includes x and sun - getting about 2 hours in each game.

i bit the bullet, used some credit card rewards points and get pokemon sword just a few nights ago.
and man, this game is real good. especially for someone whose been so out of the loop for the past 650+ 'mons.

i hear a ton of praise for old games such as heart gold, and black/white - is it worth it going back and playing these?
for pokemon, i don't care about the story at all - i'm in it for the wacky and fun pokemon designs, funny/memorable characters and just cool "ohh shiiiit" moments.
Aug 22, 2018
SWSH for me since it has encouraged me to finally do competitive online, it's just so accessible and I glad I got the chance to try it out and learn so much about it.
Dec 21, 2017
While I played and enjoyed all of them, Sword and Shield is highly enjoyable to me for the box access at all times, the wild Pokemon running around, and the ease of acquiring and maxing EVs / IVs for competitive play. Also, the sound track is my favorite out of any single other Pokemon game. I don't give a damn about the story in any of these games and it has no bearing on why I play Pokemon to begin with.


Nov 6, 2019
North of Boston
While I played and enjoyed all of them, Sword and Shield is highly enjoyable to me for the box access at all times, the wild Pokemon running around, and the ease of acquiring and maxing EVs / IVs for competitive play. Also, the sound track is my favorite out of any single other Pokemon game. I don't give a damn about the story in any of these games and it has no bearing on why I play Pokemon to begin with.
gotta agree, the simple, small quality of life changes are huge.


Oct 25, 2017
It's kind of weird. Sw/Sh has a bunch of QoL features added to it that makes some of the more obtuse aspects of pokemon finally not a pain in the ass. However, that is the only thing I feel the new games do really well. Granted, it helps the longevity of the game a good bit, but the story and characters of S/M run laps around Sw/Sh. Even by pokemon standards, I cared very little about the story and cast.

Zen Hero

Oct 25, 2017
SM and SWSH are very similar in my mind.

I think I give the edge to SM because I liked the story and music more. But SWSH has better Pokemon designs. And is much prettier in general. And has better multiplayer. And the player character can emote. And has nicer QOL.

Actually now that I've written that all out, maybe I do like SWSH better.