Reviews for Common Sense: BtS
Fox McCloude chapter 3 . 7/31/2017
I need to get this one on alerts too. Can't believe I was missing out this chapter XD

Anyway, it was a nice chapter, it's good to see the Squirtle Squad. They're managing to get by, and considering their situation, the best they can do is to try and stick together. Speaking of, it's nice to see you've given them individual designations, that's a good first step to get them to have individual personalities. Hope to see more of them in the future.

P.S: I've already started the Spanish translation, but I think I'll wait until I have about four or five chapters ready before I start posting. Plus I have other stories to take care of.
Bored321 chapter 3 . 7/23/2017
Huh. Team Rocket’s doesn’t mince words. Well at-least they’re honest.

Do the designations mean anything (Alpha is the leader, while Beta is the # 2). Is Alpha leader because of his name or because of his personality?

Wow. This is some Brutal Training for Hell if I’ve ever seen any. Is that standard procedure for training Pokemon? Seems like it’s the kind that’ll make or break a pokemon, and that’s just limiting your resources.

Nice little omake. Perhaps they'll be a reunion of sorts? If nothing else, its a good way to test their loyalty, and serves to give Squirtle some development.
Bored321 chapter 2 . 6/17/2017
Ah, the Japanese variant. Clever.

Ash # 1 is really judgy towards his counterpart. Envy is one thing, but the feeling is boarding on outright contempt. Seems like he’s looking for an excuse to demonize the act of being challenged. In this case, Ash #2 is effectively demanding satisfaction due to his counterpart insulting his honor.

Haha. More concerned by losing his specks than getting hurt. Must’ve been an expressive pair. Wow. That got dark quickly.

How nice of the annoying lizard to finally get some humility beaten into him. The conclusion felt anticlimactic, though. The battle, as much as it can even be called one, was extremely one-sided. Ash #2 suffered a 6-0 loss. While there’s a noticeable gap in tactic and skill, at the least Pikachu and Charizard should’ve been able to carve out some wins in their favor.
trying to be so oh original chapter 2 . 6/15/2017
Damn loved this episode is so well written also I like to call a fault on most animes is that the character almost never practice outside a training arc also would love to see your TRio go against Satoshi just for kicks the way he is on the anime ruined the series after fifth season
BrightNova169 chapter 1 . 6/13/2017
I really like the idea of side-stories for Common Sense. It helps expand the universe by showing what happens and how other things go down.

It seemed kind of slow to me, but I guess I'm just used to reading stories with lots of Pokémon battles. Still, this was a nice change of pace and helped explore the characters of the TR recruits.

Poor Brook is already starting to lose his mind if he can't handle a hand-written note from the Squirtle Squad. If he thinks that's weird, then he's probably going to be overwhelmed by future events. Such is the life sticking with the TRio, especially if he ends up tailing Ash.

Speaking of, it was a nice gesture of the former pranksters to show support for the new guy. Brook's going to be getting into deeper trouble the longer he stays with TR. If he can't find a way out soon, his future is toast.

On another note, between the blue hair and the stoic/apathetic attitude, Brook reminds me of the Persona 3 Protagonist, who has similar character traits.

Nothing too spectacular with Dalton's part, but the issues between him and his brother could promise some good future drama/conflict.

The part that really stood out to me was the section with Pearl and Hart. Not only did you build up their characters more, you even revealed Giovanni's intentions. Instead of making Team Rocket a common Take-Over-The-World organization like most fanfictions, it sounds as if Giovanni is almost heroic by stamping out discrimination. Then again, if Giovanni faced such treatment in the past, I guess it isn't surprising he would form Team Rocket to strike back against such injustices. Suddenly, the TRio's motto holds a lot more significance.

Questions:

1. How would Ash react to hearing Giovanni's intentions? I know it sounds kind of stupid since he'd still think Team Rocket is evil, but if he learned that the highest ranked members were sincere about Giovanni's ambitions, I'd still like to hear about Ash's thoughts.

2. This might be a long ways off, but since the TRio are far more competent, how will their rivalry with Butch and Cassidy be handled? Will their new strength drive the duo to become stronger as well? If so, this won't bode well for Ash.

3. What exactly comprises the Pokémon League's forces? Surely the Elite Four can't be the only capable trainers in the League's law enforcement. Don't they have any other trainers or soldiers for patrolling Kanto?

4. Did Giovanni pair Cortez with Gregory for being rude? If so, that was a pretty effective punishment lol.

Good luck with your work and future chapters.

Looks like Team Rocket's really blasting off.
-BrightNova169
Guest chapter 2 . 6/11/2017
To the guy who responded to my review about the Gym Leaders likely to get steamrolled, I sincerely hope that Erika was not as underhanded as your theory described. If so, then she would deserve to be fired from her position as Gym Leader at minimum. Between banning a potential challenger from her gym just for insulting her perfume, possibly manipulating Ash's friends into divulging info on his team to improve her odds of winning a battle, and panicking during a crisis (showing her lack of preparedness), Erika would have no business being a Gym Leader.

Though I doubt something like that will happen in this story. Ash will be way more focused on training that want to visit a perfume shop. At worst, he'd probably deem it a waste of time since training takes priority. Also, if he does get banned, I doubt he'd be desperate enough to sneak in via crossdressing. At this point, he'd see it as immature and quite humiliating. Ash might decide to just move on to a different gym or maybe report Erika to the League for her poor behavior. All Gym Leaders are meant to accept all challengers except in times of emergencies (sick Pokémon, mass rioting, important business meetings, etc.)

Plus, Brock might be more likely to take Ash's side since he was a former Gym Leader and could call out Erika for her behavior. He managed to resist the temptation of Maiden's Peak-Gastly after all.

If it's possible, could you log into your Fanfiction Account for future reviews? I don't think the author would appreciate using his review section as a chatroom. I could contact you via PM.
jaguarspot chapter 2 . 6/10/2017
This was a really interesting contrast. I liked how you kept Satoshi's hability of coming up with great ideas and using the field to its fullest like in canon, but didnt let him win even with that because unlike him, Ash actually excercises that creativity regularly while training with his team. Tho i feel that all the focus on new moves and combinations gives him less focus for the 'using the field' texhniques that Satoshi uses.

I really loved the contrast between charizard and charmander, and charmanders horror at charizard's attitude. I also liked that you bought up that with the team expanding so fast, charmander and the others dont know each other all that well. Tho i suppose that now that Ash and co wont be around water as much (i think. I cant remember) the water types wont be out as much and the ones not in his party can interact more at Prof. Oak's.

Btw, last i checked the strongest plant type move was frenzy grass. Did you not add it because it's technically a fifth gen move? Do the other gens nit exist yet? (By that i mean, they wont show up at all until they do in canon)
Fox McCloude chapter 2 . 6/10/2017
I wish Canon!Ash would have had this battle, maybe it would show him one or two things, how strong he could actually become with a little more focus and seriousness. I specially liked Charmander's reaction to Charizard. Sometimes, the best way to avoid making a wrong decision is to see firsthand the consequences, like in this case, seeing what you could become if you go down a bad road.
Guest chapter 2 . 6/8/2017
Thank you BrightNova169 for agreeing with me on the Gym leader situation. After your review I decided to re-watch the battle between 'Satoshi' vs Erika, Koga, and Blaine. The picture it painted for me does not favor these three. Now 'Satoshi' released Butterfree before his battle with Sabrina now in my opinion it is very unlikely that Ash would do this. Two reasons why first 'Satoshi' had been influenced by a romance fueled combination of Misty and Brock to push Butterfree into finding a romantic partner, this is very unlikely to happen as Ash would give Butterfree the option however wouldn't push the notion like before. Second with the threat of Team Rocket and the bond with his trainer and teammates Butterfree would not be interested in leaving the group. Ash would support Butterfree's decision no matter what and Brock wouldn't push the issue. Meaning Ash could very well still have Butterfree in the future.

After reviewing Satoshi's match against Koga I noticed that Charmander knew Fire-spin and used it in battle. Now considering this is the first time that the move is used it is possible that the move was learned recently. Soon after Charmander evolved into Charmeleon after stopping a heard of Exeggutors. The point that I'm making is that once Charmander finishes learning that move and getting some training and battles in he'd easily evolve before Erika's gym.
Even if Ash doesn't have Butterfree or Charmeleon, Charmander would still easily be stronger and Pidgeot could easily rag-doll Erika's entire team turning Gloom's Powder and Stench into an annoyance with Gust and incrediably strength and speed. So really Erika stands almost no chance of beating him.

Not to mention there were key factors in Satoshi's battle that won't be present for Ash's. First Satoshi was mad because of events prior to his Gym battle, this wouldn't be the case as Ash would be training or preparing for his Gym battle instead of going to the Perfume Store as he'd have no reason to go. Second and most wouldn't notice this Erika easily countered Bulbasaur's Vine Whip with Tangela's Constrict. Now most would assume that she was more experienced or more in sync but I want you to consider what happened when her Gym caught fire she easily lost Gloom and panicked not knowing what to do. Experienced trainers and Gym leaders wouldn't lose their cool like she did. Not to mention when sending out Weepinbell and used Razor Leaf in a wide defensive manner before switching out with her Gloom and knocking out Charmander with his stench before mocking him like she knew he was pretty much out of options. My answer to this is simple Erika and her groupies tricked Misty and Brock into giving them information through casual conversation on Satoshi's team. The truth is I believe this was a plot by Erika. After realizing that Satoshi was her next challenger she has her groupies ban Satoshi from the gym, meanwhile inviting Misty and Brock so that she can gather information on him. After a while she knows Satoshi will come back angry demanding a battle, where she would graciously accept. This makes her dialog in the battle even worse coming out as it is a tactic to further anger Ash. Please note that Erika immediately recalls Tangela for Weepinbell, why? Tangela had taken no real damage but she switched out something Gym Leaders aren't supposed to do. Although some other gym leaders do it but immediately when Weepinbell gets taken out does she get more serious. Insulting Ash and his Pokémon after knocking Charmander out with Gloom's smell, which isn't really a showing of her skill or ability. Which also brings me to why she gave Satoshi the badge, she felt guilty. She undermined his chance and when Gloom was in danger he saved it. Leading her to give him the badge out of Shame.

Now this is only speculation but it is a possibility.
BrightNova169 chapter 2 . 6/8/2017
Well, this chapter certainly showed how well 'Satoshi' would fare against your Ash. A complete wipeout. Talk about brutal.

I'm sure both Ashs' were thrown for a loop due to the nature of the silver fog. How can anyone not be surprised when meeting an alternate version of themselves?

Somehow, I'm not surprised CS Ash got miffed at Satoshi since the latter had a really easy journey and didn't really earn a lot of his wins. Ash is probably envious that Satoshi hadn't had to deal with such dangerous foes.

This battle really showed the differences between Ash and Satoshi. Satoshi relied more on determination and head-on conflict while Ash shows more strategy and the fruits of hard training. Each of them threw the other for a loop a couple times, but Satoshi was in way over his head. Determination is a good quality, but sometimes it only prolongs the inevitable especially if you don't have the power or smarts to back it up. And while Satoshi might have had a couple moments of good ideas (i.e. Leech Seed net to stall for Solarbeam), Ash is no stranger to thinking fast due to Team Rocket. So all that remains would be whoever has the better base skills and better trained Pokémon.

Too bad the battle wasn't canon. Ash could've put the knowledge he learned to good use and get a - temporary - leg up on Team Rocket.

The best parts of the battle for me were Charmander vs. Muk, especially when he went berserk and Muk's stretching punch and Pikachu vs. Charizard, perfecting Thunder and smashing Charizard's ego.

Charmander's reaction to Charizard seemed very in character especially since the former thought the latter seemed extremely ungrateful for being saved from death. Even if it wasn't canon, it was nice to see the small fire-lizard learn he would always be welcome on the team and really seemed to resolve his abandonment issues. True friends would not only never abandon one another, they would help each other become stronger and enjoy one another's company.

I have to give props to Satoshi, however strange and perhaps undeserving it might sound. He did make Ash worried a couple of times and came up with a couple good moves during the battle such as the Leech Seed net, Solarbeam, and Muk's punch. Plus, even though he started blue-screening after Pidgeotto's crushing defeat, he kept fighting to the bitter end, proving that despite the massive skill and power gap, he and Ash share the same never-give-up attitude.

And the part where he ordered Charizard to stand down after the battle was a pretty big moment for him. He finally put his foot down with the big-headed lizard's attitude to avoid unnecessary injuries.

This battle of the Ashes really deconstructed the character of an Idiot Hero (i.e. Satoshi). A lack of tactical knowledge and strategy can put you at a serious disadvantage against a much smarter/stronger opponent. Determination can only help so much that if you don't have the strength to back up your will, you'll have no chance of winning a fight. Satoshi's lack of diligent training meant his team was far too weak to pose a significant challenge to Ash, who had been training hard since Viridian Forest. Plus, since it seemed that Satoshi relied on improvising moves at the last second, Ash could easily counter whatever tricks Satoshi scrounged up since CS-Team Rocket would be able to do better and on a more frequent basis.

I could see your Ash (CS-Ash for short) easily cleaning up the canon Indigo League, at least making it to the top 8. Beyond Ritchie (where Satoshi fell/would fall short), I don't know who he'd face. But CS-Ash would definitely give the rest a run for their money, provided none of them had anything like a Gengar, Alakazam, or Dragonite.

In fact, I have to agree with one of the other reviewers: At this point, only Sabrina and the Eighth Badge Gym Leader seem to pose a major challenge for Ash. Erika, Koga, and Blaine are likely to get wiped out with little effort if their battle styles and strategies remain close to canon. I could see the latter two improve with ninja knowledge/training and experience respectively, but there seems to be no hope for the Nature Princess. I really can't wait to see how the rest of the Gym Battles will go down.

Overall, this was definitely the most surreal chapter of Bts so far.

I have a suggestion: since you did a non-canon battle between Ash and 'Satoshi', do you think you could have another meeting with them? This one could be on friendlier terms and both could share their experiences with one another, comparing and contrasting how they dealt with Gym Battles, Characters of the Day, Team Rocket, etc.

If you do choose to go with my suggestion, what part of the timeline would Satoshi come from again? Post-Kanto or farther out? Or would you save the latter for when Ash manages to catch up more?

Almost forgot, I liked seeing Dexter getting a decent role in the story. Even if both Dexters are just Pokedexes, he's rarely used in canon outside of scanning data for Pokémon.

These side stories are really entertaining and well thought out. They definitely make for good reading while you're prepping more of the main story. Keep up the good work. See you later.

Gary Oak better watch out.
-BrightNova169
Guest chapter 2 . 6/7/2017
When I made that comment I did it as a little food for thought but this blew my expectations out the water. Also this raises another point that your Ash should have no trouble beating Erika, Koga, and Blaine after beating Sabrina. As well as white washing his competition in the league preliminaries. Realistically only Sabrina and his eighth badge should give him trouble.
BbK2442 chapter 2 . 6/7/2017
W00T! Now that was a great battle. It really shows just how different canon Ash and CS Ash really are. I kinda wish this *was* canon.

Maybe you could do a whole series of canon characters vs. CS characters once you've had them grow a little? Like maybe a match between canon Team Rocket and CS Team Rocket?

Also, about Muk's abilities here, it sounds very much like how Schlock fights in the webcomic "Schlock Mercenary". Schlock is basically a nontoxic version of a Muk made up of bucky-balls and silicon instead of toxic waste. Because of his amorphous body structure, Schlock can use every cell in his body as a muscle cell, with the downside being that any damage to his body is basically brain damage. He can hit things at forces that would break the bones of a normal creature, and he can move at shocking speeds by gathering his entire mass into a giant "foot" and pushing against the ground with all his strength. I think if you want tips on how to train a Grimer or Muk, you might want to give "Schlock Mercenary" a read. Or at least, skim the TV Tropes page of "Schlock Mercenary".
Snoozing Lurker chapter 2 . 6/7/2017
Yeah, that's how that would go lol. Canon!Ash is such a noob, eight badges or not.
Your Ash only missed one possibility - Pikachu can jump on Charizard's back if he's close to the ground and Thunderbolt it into oblivion.

It also raises the question why Ash hasn't sought help with Pikachu's Thunder - I'm sure there are some videos of that in the Pokédex, maybe with Lt. Surge or someone. Especially Lt. Surge, now I think of it, since he has been in the military and probably instructed soldiers for a living before he became a Gym Leader. He might actually do something like that as a hobby, who knows :P
Bored321 chapter 1 . 6/5/2017
Ahh, much better. Why put all that effort in drawing up characters with dynamic personalities only to use them in one scene? This way you get some return investment.

I liked it. Giovanni's accurately acute way of picking up on a person's demeanor was a nice touch, and even the Drill Sergeant came off as reasonable. Majority of the time he lets you know he's going to make the next six weeks of your life utter hell (which is the point but whatever), but that didn't' happen here.

Not sure how I feel about Giovanni's goals, though. As is, he looks like a well-intentioned, if slightly nefarious, dude that happens to be running a criminal enterprise. Its like he's only the bad guy because he's has some radically different ideas on how to "fix" the system than others. His goals come off as so noble, even if his some of methods are crude and loathsome to differing degrees, that its hard not too root for him.

Anyway. A good start. Though you might consider creating a Table of Contents so a person can find their favored omake easier. At the beginning, maybe.
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