With the recent release of Digimon Survive, fans were hoping that this latest entry in the Digimon series would once again bring the franchise back to the gaming scene. But after an ambiguous reception and bombardment in reviews, the series continues to have false starts with games that simply do not correspond to reality. Despite the fact that earlier games, such as Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth and Hacker’s Additional Memory, inspired new hope that the series would finally be able to meet the standard set by Pokemon, it seems that the franchise will never fully emerge from the shadow cast by the juggernaut Game Freak. series.
But one of Pokemon’s latest spin-offs could help pave the way for a possible line of Digimon games that are arguably better suited to customization than its competitor. Pokemon Unite, Pokemon’s foray into MOBA games similar to League of Legends and Dota 2, has become very popular among fans, even despite criticism over things like its microtransactions, and has amassed millions of downloads at the time of writing. But the overall Unite formula can easily be extrapolated to Digimon and further develop the style of play, so TiMi Studio Group should consider creating a Digimon Unite by-product.
Unite is perfect for Digimon
Unite, at its core, is a simple game, similar to most other MOBA games, in which two opposing teams try to score points and attack each other. However, Pokemon Unite offers a new take on this by combining its own mechanics, such as evolution, so that players must accumulate experience to level up and evolve, giving them stronger Pokemon to use against their opponents. Since Digimon already shares this quality with Pokemon, it’s easy to draw a parallel with the playable Digimon characters who are mastering to reach more powerful stages, such as Champion or Ultimate.
Moreover, the Pokemon Unite setting was sufficiently removed from the main series, which allowed the by-product to make significant changes to the mechanics and knowledge of Pokemon. While the setting and “plot” for Pokemon Unite would be purely superficial, the game takes place on the distant mythical island of Eos, where these battles take place using Eos energy using various currencies, such as Eos gems or Eos tickets. As mentioned, this is not what the game relies on to enjoy the gameplay, but Digimon will need much less reconfiguration to fit the Unite model, which is an example of Digimon Unite in the digital world.
Digimon Unite could be better
Under the banner of Unite, not only the game’s setting will work, as Pokemon Unite borrows from Digimon to explain the reason why Pokemon trainers will “evolve” with each new battle. The knowledge that the energy of Eos mysteriously drops Pokemon was introduced to solve this problem and goes against what the Pokemon canon claims. Digimon, on the other hand, does not face such a problem, as Digimon will regularly evolve up and down depending on the battles. This would not only be more in line with his own canon, but could even take into account Unite’s own mechanics.
In addition, Digimon has an extensive set of different digivolutions in many Digimons. Unlike Pokemon, whose pocket monsters have from 1 to 3 stages of evolutionary lines, beyond which they do not go, Digimon’s own monsters develop in several different ways. For example, while Charmander could only get to Charizard, Agumon has several digivolutions, ranging from ShineGreymon, WarGreymon, ZekeGreymon and others. This can significantly expand the mechanics of Unite and allow players to specialize in different digivolutions or even change strategy in the middle of a battle with a different digivolution.
Another significant improvement that Digimon Unite can make, which Pokemon Unite currently lacks, will be the story mode. While Pokemon Unite follows the basic premise to engage players in the action as a free game, the story mode could greatly benefit the Unite series, which could first help new players get used to the game mechanics and controls, allow them to gradually improve while telling a fascinating story. Digimon can best tell the story, as the setting in the digital world is more malleable for potential plots than the island of Eos in Pokemon.
Currently, TiMi Studio Group has other projects that it is working on, including ongoing support and expansion of Pokemon Unite with new seasons, game Pokemon and many others. Another added complication is that Digimon already has a significant number of mobile games, and Unite will be another game that can be added to this mix, which means that fans may not expect outstanding games. But regardless of this, Digimon Unite can become a serious rival to the Unite model and, finally, snatch Digmon from the shadow of Pokemon.
Digimon Survive is already available for Nintendo Switch, PC, PS4 and Xbox One.