DLC Review | Pokémon The Teal Mask is an Unsteady Experience

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, released in November of 2022, garnered significant attention for their open-world gameplay. However, as players eagerly dived into the latest DLC expansion, The Teal Mask, they encountered severe performance issues, casting a shadow on the otherwise promising content.

The Teal Mask DLC introduces a small new region, Kitakami, to the Pokémon world, offering players a fresh storyline set within the game’s expansive universe. While the narrative is a highlight, technical problems have marred the experience. Framerate dips and even complete stoppages have left players frustrated by the game’s unsteady performance.

The irony lies in the fact that Pokémon Scarlet and Violet faced similar performance issues at their initial launch, raising questions about the effectiveness of patches and updates. Players had hoped for improvements since the game’s release, but the issues persist, negatively impacting their enjoyment of the DLC.

Despite these technical woes, The Teal Mask manages to shine in its storytelling. New characters like Kieran and Carmine add depth to the game’s narrative, exploring themes of exclusion and tradition. The DLC also delves into the legend of Ogerpon, an enigmatic Pokémon, offering a captivating cultural touchstone.


However, the performance problems continue to overshadow the game’s strengths. As Pokémon fans eagerly await the next DLC, The Indigo Disk, it remains to be seen whether Game Freak can address these technical issues and deliver a smoother gaming experience.

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet’s ongoing performance problems serve as a reminder of the challenges faced by developers in delivering complex open-world games. While the games boast compelling narratives and expanded gameplay, their technical struggles highlight the importance of optimizing game engines to ensure a more enjoyable and stable experience for players.

The disappointment stemming from the technical issues in The Teal Mask DLC is exacerbated by the contrast with the promising narrative it presents. Kieran and Carmine, two new characters introduced in the expansion, bring depth and emotional resonance to the story. Their journey touches upon themes of kindness and exclusion, expanding the Pokémon world’s lore.

The DLC also revolves around the enigmatic Pokémon, Ogerpon, and its role in local urban legends. As players progress through the story, these myths unravel, shedding light on the community’s struggle with tradition in the face of new revelations. While Ogerpon’s gameplay mechanics may not feel groundbreaking, its narrative contribution adds cultural richness to the new Kitakami region.

Despite the engaging storyline, the technical limitations of Pokémon Scarlet and Violet continue to hamper the overall experience. Players had hoped for improvements in performance since the game’s initial release, but the issues persist, making it challenging to fully appreciate the narrative and gameplay.

As players eagerly anticipate The Indigo Disk DLC, it remains to be seen whether Game Freak can address these performance issues and provide a smoother gaming experience. The ongoing struggles with game performance underscore the complexities of developing large-scale open-world games and the need for optimized game engines to ensure a seamless and enjoyable player experience.

While Pokémon Scarlet and Violet offer captivating narratives and expanded gameplay, their persistent technical issues serve as a reminder of the importance of technical optimization in modern game development. As players continue to explore the Pokémon world, they hope for a smoother and more stable experience in future DLC releases.

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