Pokemon Violet DLC: The Indigo Disk Review – A Feast of Fights

Pokemon Violet DLC: The Indigo Disk Review

DLC is a great way to flesh out a somewhat threadbare experience. The Indigo Disk, the second DLC release for Pokemon Violet, mostly succeeds at this task. You get tons more Pokemon to catch, more tasks to complete, and more battles to win. On the other hand, certain deficiencies are still on full display. Clothing customization remains lackluster, for example. Otherwise, the new fights are pleasantly tough, and the new setting is a blast to explore. I had a great time exploring this underwater terrarium.

Our story continues where the last DLC left off. While The Teal Mask was more focused on a place, The Indigo Disk is all about the people you meet. Carmine and Kieran are back, along with a brand new Elite Four to battle. You do return to Area Zero, but that doesn’t happen until much later. Most of your time is spent meeting new people and getting into high-level Pokemon battles. There was also a surprising amount of interpersonal drama for a Pokemon game, which I appreciated. But the biggest shock was definitely the difficulty level.

Some Tough Battles Ahead

Normally, the battles in Pokemon games don’t get tough until long after the credits roll. And while The Indigo Disk is still sort of post-game material, it’s still shocking to see such high-level strategy come up within a story. I needed two attempts to finish most major battles, which is practically unheard of. Part of this was not being familiar with certain new monsters. But a lot of the challenge was purely strategy-based. The Elite Four had some crazy moves! In other words, be sure to bring your ‘A’ game when it comes time to throw down.

Pokemon Violet DLC: The Indigo Disk Review

Although DLC releases feature new content, The Indigo Disk feels loaded with a lot more to do. You’ve got the Elite Four battles to win, for one thing. Then there’s all the new Pokemon to catch. You can eventually track down a bunch of Legendaries. There’s an endless cycle of simple side quests to complete, which can lead to several rewards. You can customize your club room at the academy, learn new ways of throwing Pokeballs, and even invite people over from the mainland. My only complaint is that the side quests can get pretty repetitive after a short while. If nothing else, finishing each one is crazy fast.

Some Stuttering For Sure

Another tiny little downside is that the whole game runs noticeably worse at certain times. I found the swamp sections made my game stutter and groan quite badly. I never froze up completely, but I did pause a few times. This didn’t happen everywhere, but I had to tread carefully in a couple of sections. There’s just something about the object density and the aggressive autosave system that don’t properly mix. It’s possible that future patches will smooth things out, but I’m not counting on it at this point.

Pokemon Violet DLC: The Indigo Disk Review

I’ve banged this particular drum a couple of times already, but it bears repeating. The clothing customization options in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet are super weak. I held out hope that this last DLC release would change things up, but it does not. You get a new set of uniforms, but three of them are almost identical. There’s a couple of new hairstyles, a few new accessories, and that’s it. By now, this specific feature is set in stone, but I still held out hope. The options in Sword and Shield were just so robust by comparison. It’s still the only major feature that feels, to me at least, like a massive downgrade.

While I had a good time with The Teal Mask, The Indigo Disk was a marked improvement. You’ve got more Pokemon to catch, tougher battles to win, and more to do. On top of that, the story told in the two releases wraps up in a satisfying, well-crafted way. I still wish the clothing options were more robust, to be sure. And the game still doesn’t always run great. But it got me playing Pokemon Violet again, and I’m going to keep doing so. There’s more Legendaries to scoop up, after all. If you’re looking for more from the latest Pokemon game, the Area Zero DLC has some serious bang for your buck.

***A Nintendo Switch code was provided by the publisher***

The Good

  • Challenging battles
  • Tons of Pokemon to catch
  • Story feels well-crafted

The Bad

  • Game sometimes runs poorly
  • Side quests get boring fast
  • Customization still weak