Pokémon emerged over 20 years ago. With routine installments, multiple versions, and remasters, the series has seen plenty of features and mechanics. Not every mechanic remains though. Many have been removed -- some beloved and some hated.

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Bringing some of these features back would serve the series well, as they alleviate problems that have plagued the series. Some are simply fun. Others should remain gone, banished to the dumpster of abandoned mechanics.

10 Return: Secret Bases

Who doesn't like a little customization? Secret Bases were special areas that players could decorate with furniture and Pokémon dolls. While they appeared in both Generation III and Generation IV, their Hoenn debut is the more iconic iteration.

The Pokémon games sorely lack customization and ways for the player to feel connected with the world. Secret Bases helped ground the player's existence within the world. With growing online connectivity in games, it would be nice to have your own area to invite fellow Trainers over to your Base to battle online.


9 Stay Gone: Overworld Berry Planting

The number of games with log-in bonuses, or their equivalents, continues to grow every year. It's not limited to just games-as-a-service models either. Animal Crossing infamously subtly pressures its players to play every day so they don't miss anything. Even Pokémon encouraged checking in daily to grab berries.

Another daily chore is the last thing anyone needs. Berries are cool, and provide interesting strategies as held items, but no one needs a shallow farming system in a Pokémon game.

8 Return: Safari Zone

Maybe it's childhood nostalgia talking, but the Safari Zone was great. Generation I's Safari Zone felt like it held a bounty of secrets, each around another corner that you didn't reach before your time in the zone ran out. Between HMs, items, and special Pokémon, there really were. They provided an incentive to return to the Zone.

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While the proliferation of the Internet would now impair some of that mystery, the Safari Zone also provided a twist on the normal Pokémon battle setup. You couldn't actually battle in the Zone, and instead had to use a variety of bait and other tools to coax and capture. Simple, yes, but the series could use more twists on the two-decade-old formula.

7 Stay Gone: Pokémon Contests

Pokémon Contests were a way for Pokémon to compete without direct combat. Instead, the best Pokémon in their category was chosen based on their condition and moves. Winners received a variety of items, ranging from berries to a Destiny Knot.

They always felt like a vestigial feature, so disconnected from the main gameplay loop of the core game that it was easy to ignore them. They only ever appeared in the Hoenn games in Generation III and Generation VI.

6 Return: Pokémon Following You

This feels like one of those no-brainer things that is likely held back by technical concerns. After it was well-received in HeartGold/SoulSilver, it was surprisingly lacking in subsequent pre-3D releases like Black and White. 

Now Pokémon is comfortably in full 3D and it seems unlikely that this mechanic will return for a while, if ever. The model fidelity can be a hefty load for the console and the games already often struggle with performance. Worrying about hundreds of animated Pokémon models on the overworld could only make it worse.

5 Stay Gone: Triple Battles

Triple Battles appeared in the Generation V and VI games and were dominantly displayed in White. The placement of each of the three Pokémon on each side was extremely important since positioning affected how moves and abilities worked.

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While Double Battles feel like they completely recontextualize the entire idea of a Pokémon battle, Triple Battles feel like pure chaos. It's not that there aren't strategies for Triple Battles, there are. There's just a little too much going on here to strike the balance between simplicity and depth Pokémon strives to achieve.

4 Return: Trainer Rematches

It's always been a little baffling that this mechanic didn't remain as a series staple. Pokémon games, especially the more recent entries, are devoid of post-game content. While Trainer battles have never been the epitome of challenge (Red and a few others aside), they'd break up post-game grinding at least a little.

And that's not to say they have to be as simple as their Gold and Silver implementation. Later titles should be an excuse to improve upon the feature. Maybe make the Trainers improve with subsequent rematches?

3 Stay Gone: Horde Battles

Another feature that can stay gone forever. Sure, they were a nice method to farm shiny Pokémon. For the majority of the playerbase, they were an annoyance that led to mashing A to get through a fight that now took five times as long due to all the extra battle animations.

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Thankfully they only appeared in Generation VI. Good riddance.

2 Return: Battle Frontier

The top of the no-brainer pile. It's incredible that the Frontier has never returned. It provided challenging post-game content for players who wish to continue to push themselves after the credits.

It was tough, it was fun, it was a good excuse to try out different team combinations. The series might not need the Battle Frontier specifically, but it absolutely needs something like it.

1 Stay Gone: HMs

If there was ever a mechanic that Pokémon fans were nigh-universally happy to see vanish, HMs were probably it. The idea makes sense in premise: allow Pokémon to be useful by providing methods for them to solve problems in the game's overworld. In reality, HMs took up a valuable spot in a move set with a mediocre move or led to one poor Bidoof carrying four HMs.

The Poké Ride mechanic in Sun and Moon was a better realization of the above idea, but since they were limited to pre-chosen Pokémon, it still wasn't perfect. Stay gone, HMs. But learn from them, Game Freak.

NEXT: 5 Gen 1 Pokémon That Are Underrated (And 5 That Are Overrated)

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