Pokémon Quest is the best free-to-play game in the series yet

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Pokémon Quest is not a role-playing game in the series’s traditional sense. There’s creature collecting, but it’s more through luck and patience instead of grinding. There are battles, but they don’t need your help to proceed. Exploration is out of your hands. It’s a free-to-play Switch game that isn’t meant to be settled into for a long haul, but sampled at your leisure. Or, if you’re like me, obsess over on a daily basis.

Set on Tumblecube Island, the game leans heavily into this boxy theme with cute, Minecraft-like versions of the original 151 pokémon. Time is spent split between a base camp where your new friends roam freely, and exploring the island. After you’ve befriended a starter pal of your choice — Bulbasaur, Charmander,…

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