Reviews for Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Guiding Light
Windskull chapter 85 . 7/24/2020
Alright, so I *technically* wasn't done with the special episode, but the Gallian stuff is different enough that I think it was a reasonable division point.

So to start off, I think all the Gallian stuff was cute. Tooth-rottingly adorable. And I actually loved it. At the same time, it feels like a bit of a slog to get through. I think it's solely because it comes as a followup to Luxeria's story. Between the two of the and the three bonus episodes in between, we've spent 11 chapters away from the main story, which makes it feel like the plot, which had been rapidly picking up, came to a screeching halt.

On the positive side of things, there were some absolutely tantalizing bits in this chapter. Watching Midnight get his butt kicked for being an ass was great. And this bonus chapter dropped some real bombshells and makes me suspicious of Arceus even more than before.
Windskull chapter 77 . 7/23/2020
Here we are again with another special episode. I definitely feel this one was an improvement over the first special episode, and it felt much more relevant to the plot at hand. Also, for some reason it hadn't even occurred to me that Luxeria was shiny. I was just assuming she had off-colored skin like the Ultra Recon Squad in USUM.

Anyways, this was a fun little interlude that both explained a lot and had a lot of fun Scifi tropes (No you fools, why would you bring that mystery space item back to your base? You're asking for trouble!). There were a couple things I find myself scratching my head over though:

First, Luxeria's change in response to Sticky. I don't know if it's because of his change in demenor after getting out of the crystal, her own trauma, having to work with him the last few weeks, or some mix of all of the above, but I hope it will get addressed soon, because it left me curious.

The other thing that I find myself scratching my head over is how the two of them would have ANY of their fancy supplies. I guess the SOL3O was well-equiped and some of that equipment fell to the world with them? Gallian's harness, in particular, is what's really throwing me for a loop. Hopefully that'll be addressed soon, since it looks like the next several chapters have to do with him.

Lastly, I just want to mention that this bonus chapter is raising some... alarming bells, and gives me a feeling this fic is about to go places WRT Arceus. Looking forward to see how that pans out.
Shadow of Antioch chapter 36 . 7/23/2020
I am happy to announce Shane has redeemed himself in my eyes. Even with such a sensitive emotional situation, you did a wonderful job at laying out both sides of the coin—helping the reader at least consider why Shane and Tessa were acting like they were. Truth be told, I sort of downplayed Shane’s own suffering, so angry I was about his intolerable behaviour (and since he’d started it all). When he was drowning in the swamp, it didn’t really sink in how traumatising it has to have been for him—even IF he’d been acting like an asshole. Same Tessa with slapping Shane with a team dissolution note just as he’d woken up from a coma. I didn’t so much as blink while reading it. As the three teammates reminisced about their actions, only then did I realise how brutal and cruel that was on Tessa’s part. And I think that was your intention.

The sheer depth and emotional complexity on display shows just how effort you poured into this character arc, and it absolutely pays off. The team feels more united now than ever—and it’s all 110% earned. Shane’s redemption might have only just begun, but it’s been the undisputed highlight of Guiding Light so far. If the story had been discontinued at the end of Episode 7, I would still probably recommend it for this reason alone. Be proud of your work.

Man, there’s been so many emotional highs lately. All the bubbling tension, the threat of Team Radiance disbanding, Oranguru dying, Tessa’s parents… I definitely hope the next chapters offer a small break. Oh, also: Tessa’s mother isn’t actually communicating with her. I had my suspicions from the very beginning, and now I’m almost certain after you hinted at Zero being the one who’s impersonating her. It’d make sense why her mother’s so insistent that she abandon Shane. The baddies want him, and they need him all nice and alone.

Speaking of Tessa’s mother, that’s a hell of a dilemma she’s in. Not only a former human, but one with a human FAMILY? Husband and child? Yikes. Explains a lot about her behaviour. Despite settling into her new world, and even finding a new mate, I can’t imagine her not reminiscing all the time. She claims to be protecting Lunala, but I can easily see that being an excuse. Heck, hasn’t Lunala fused with Necrozma, and isn’t she now working with the baddies? That means Tessa’s mum is working with the baddies, too. It’d explain Gallian. Tessa’s father is most likely alive at this point, I’m sure of it. Ah, so much conflict yet to come! So many possibilities! My misgivings with Tessa’s character lacking depth are now more or less solved. While she still isn’t my favourite, I can confidently say that I enjoy reading all three main characters. And Team Captivate. And Metagross. And Espy and Umbry. Everyone, really.

A crack in Null’s helmet! It should mean he’s ready to evolve. (It’s not really spoilers since he’s a Silvally in the story cover art :P). I wonder how that’s going to be handled. He should finally gain full control over himself upon breaking free of the helmet, but… it IS supposed to be a restraining tool. One that seems to have worked remarkably well (if you disregard the occasional episode of voices overpowering his will). With the helmet shattered… hm. There might be a part when Silvally goes beserk and Shane and Tessa have to contain him, calm him down again.

I’m still not entirely sure what the deal is with the Solgaleo flashbacks Shane keeps seeing. My first hypothesis was that Shane IS Solgaleo, or was in some past life/form—but how could Solgaleo be communicating with him right now? It could be some past version of himself, but that just sounds too contrived. I suppose Solgaleo is choosing to show him those visions. Why, though? How could they possibly help Shane with his mission? And why choose to do it so suddenly and cryptically instead of just telling him beforehand? Eh, who knows.

Characters aside, I can already tell that the main plot is going to take us all over this world. Maybe to another continent, possibly even to this extradimensional space Zero seems to reside in, perhaps in the final confrontation.

Your descriptive skills have been getting better and better, especially when it comes to characters expressing their emotions. The way they do it still feels a little… exaggerated, at times, but I’ll be damned if it doesn’t work. Although Guiding Light has long shed its cartoonish aspects, it still retains a surprisingly light tone that makes reading it a breeze. It’s been interspersed with darker themes as of episode 7, of course, but I feel that my point still largely applies. Your pacing is also on the brisker side, which I’d argue is a positive since it helps smooth things along. With such a wide world and so many characters to keep track of, and with so many events happening in short succession, anything slower would burgeon the story to two million words.

In short, what you have right now is… yeah, I’m going to say it: perfect. I’m excited to read on, and the million-word number no longer intimidates me as much ever since I’ve been sucked into your world. I’ll see you very soon.
Windskull chapter 73 . 7/21/2020
I finished episode 12 a few days ago and then forgot to do a review so let's do that real quick before I get any further into the fic.

First of all, I'm glad to see that Gallian has come to his senses and is getting involved with helping the team. I was glad to see him back after he kind of fell out of relevance, and even if things aren't completely patched up, its good to see the "what happened to Gallian?" plot thread is no longer left hanging.

And like the previous episode, it was nice to see them come out relatively on top, after suffering so many losses already (congrats to Shane on the evolution, but also rip Lapras 8( )

Now the cat's out of the bag to the rest of the team regarding Shane and Solgaleo, but there's definitely a lot more going on there than meets the eye. I guess we'll have to wait a bit longer to work that out though, since it's flashback special episode time 8) Hopefully I'll be back soon to share my thoughts on that one.
NikelNani chapter 123 . 7/15/2020
SPOILERS IN THIS REVIEW (Sorry for this being so long and somewhat rant, I needed to get this off my chest)
Words cannot describe how much joy (and tears) this whole story brought me, although technically some words just did! xD
I will admit that when I first started reading I wasn't expecting much. I thought it would be a lighthearted tale about 2 partners going on their merry way to save the world, something I could read and not get too invested into. Boy I was wrong. Let's start from the beginning.

The introduction was set up with a little bit of mystery, which was enough to get me hooked. I then met Shane and Tessa, who seemed intriguing. However as the chapters progressed I quickly grew a disliking for Shane. At first his cluelessness was funny, but his arrogance and blatant rudeness to everyone made it hard to sit through because I can't stand that attitude, be it fictional or in real life. I was tempted to stop reading because I questioned if I wanted to go through an entire story with an annoying protagonist. BUT. My mind quickly changed in chapter 34 Bitter Realizations, when Shane finally realized how his behavior was affecting the Pokemon around him. It was then that he got his act together and turned into a character I could love and now call my favorite.

The plot picked up at this point. Team Radiance went to go stop the Prism Virus once more. As they did this more crucial information about the villains and Shane popped up. "Remember who you are?" said Shane's dream. What does that mean? He already knows he's human I thought to myself. The 2 biggest moments of suspense and surprise for me came from Nicky being revealed as Necrozma (his story is quite tragic) and Shane actually being Dark Matter. Some nights I couldn't go to bed because of shock... and I needed to know what happened next. I additionally loved the dark tones interwoven through the adventure that created suspense. And then to prevent it from going too far you incorporated sweet, tender moments that provided a nice respite.

The last few episodes though. Oh man. The battles were epic (although slightly drawn out IMO), the plot twists kept going deeper, relationships set sail. What wasn't to love?
Shane's last words being parallel to his teams motto BROKE me as he went into the sun. ("From darkest night... I'll light the way... To a brand-new world... and a bright, shining day!" WHY IS THIS SO POETIC AND STUCK IN MY HEAD?) It showed beautifully how much he grew as a person. And then the memento/letter he left in Chapter 118 Radiant Sunset? GAAAAAH. I sobbed in bed at 10 in the morning. You left a question asking if you were able to evoke the same emotions from the canon game endings. Suffice to say, you surpassed it and did a damn good job getting the waterworks to come out. It was beautiful. And although Shane, Tessa, and Silvally didn't get the perfect happy ending I hoped for, it was still a great happy ending nonetheless.

Overall, the characterization and world building in here deserves respect. Each character has personality, making it easy to identify them and imagine the scenarios come to life. Everyone has importance as well: the protagonists, the villains, the side characters. Seeing all the Pokemons motives and backgrounds being flushed out is a rare sight, a sight that you accomplished dazzlingly. I didn't think I would get as attached to the characters as I am right now, but I have. I can't even believe I'm craving more moments of Shane and Tessa, even though I despised him initially. The themes of friendship and supporting one another is well demonstrated, and there are definitely important lessons scattered throughout the story that I have kept in mind. The only con I have is that there was a ton of use of the phrase "The former and the latter" in the later chapters, sometimes popping up multiple times in a few paragraphs.

Reading THE END felt like a tiny part of my heart disappeared. Truth be told, I'm not sure I'll be able to enjoy any other fanfic since this one has definitely spoiled me. I'm only sad I can't share this with any of my friends to read. I SINCERELY hope you'll see this and know that this story is priceless (or maybe you already know and this just reassures you). This may sound like an exaggeration, but reading this has changed me. I'm probably going to reread from the start just because I can't get over it. Thank you for creating this. Truly. Team Radiance forever!
Windskull chapter 66 . 7/13/2020
I'm done with 11 already? Wow, that went a lot quicker than expected.

Woo, Tessa evolved! I'm looking forward to seeing how this affects her going forward. Great to see her growing. We also ended up seeing a bit of her relationship with her mom, which was... oof. Not so healthy. I do look forward to seeing her call her mom out, though I wonder how much it will actually matter in the long run.

I will say, the whole "split tribe" thing was kind of cliche, but I think that was intentional (since it was kinda lampshaded), and the plot didn't overstay its welcome, so I can't really complain too much.

One thing I DO wish had happened, though, was that we saw more of Gallian. The opening scene to this episode made me think he was going to be more relevant to this episode, especially with that wham line at the end of the scene. But then he was just kind of... there and gone, and that wasn't followed up on.

All that said, this briefer episode was kind of nice for a change, especially since the heroes managed to be much more victorious in comparison to how things had been going. Sure, they didn't get the piece, but I imagine that's going to lead up to a much-needed confrontation with Gallian soon enough.

Hope to be back for episode 12 soon!
Windskull chapter 60 . 7/13/2020
Man. That was a doozy of an episode that really shook things up, huh? Let's jump right in.

I don't know why, but it didn't really sink in that it had only been two days since Espy and Umbry arrived until somoene pointed it out. I think part of it is just how much has happened in only two days that made it feel like a lot more.

While I am saddened at Umbry's death (as well as everyone elses to some extent. Like, damn, guess that's one way to cull a growing cast), I am also excited for the shake up to the status quo that happened in that chapter. Looks like we're about to have a race to collect the things against the infected team captivate while the big bads are preoccupied.

There was one thing that left me scratching my head a bit: Metagross. While I was admittedly not attached to Metang as a character, the implication that he forcibly fused with a wild metang really... raises some questions about who he was as a person. I figure it's intentional and meant to raise some questions down the line, especially since Metagross is still at large, but right now I feel like it really just complicates matters more than it helps them. With everyone kind of in shock right now after everything that happened, I'm not surprised that it was glossed over. I do kind of hope its something that's explored down the road.
Great story chapter 123 . 7/8/2020
One of the best Pokémon fics I’ve read in a long time
Windskull chapter 49 . 7/7/2020
plugging right along, lets look at episode 9.

Episode 9 answered a lot of questions for the heroes, which was nice, while also raising some new ones. It also gave the heroes a much-needed no-strings-attatched victory in the form of Silvally. And, ngl, it was kind of nice to get that little breather scene where they just had a moment to relax and play tag.

I also wanted to mention that I thought it interesting thatyou chose a growlithe for Nicky's original form, since I see them used as counterparts to vulpix fairly often (being two kanto pokemon evolving by fire stone, I think they're version exclusives insome generations? I'd have to check). I'm assuming that was intentional.

I liked the call back to the third movie with the unknowns making themselves into Entei. Also with this episode, I'm starting to see where theGL/HoC similarities come from. On that note, I think your Null/Silvally origins for a world like this work rather well, though I'll be honest, I was rather surprised by Necrozma's origins. I definitely wasn't expecting Necrozma to be mon-made.

I don't think I have anything else to say on this one? I liked it. It was intense, but ended on a breather. Of course, that just means things are about to get real bad, doesn't it.
Platinum9732 chapter 88 . 7/7/2020
I loved the surfing scene!
Windskull chapter 44 . 7/6/2020
I may have gotten myself just a liiiiitle bit hooked into this story now.

Anyways. Woof. This episode dropped a lot of bombshells. From the suggestion that something is rotten within the guild, especially surrounding Incineroar's death (something that doesn't surprise me too much, considering the hints left behind by Briviary removing both Incineroar's and Gallian's records, and the fact that there's ALWAYS someone there to catch Shane or Tessa from snooping around in Prisma's room alone). Prisma being zero? I mean, I suspected that she was either on Zero's side or killed by her, but actually BEING Zero caught me by surprise. And the stuff with Necky, while I suspected there was going to be more to do with Nicky than what we'd already seen, that one somehow threw me for a loop. I guess because I didn't expect a "human reincarnated as a legendary" plot.

I... actually don't have any issues with this episode? Like, I'm saddened by the loss of Eevee and Sylveon, especially because of where that leaves Tessa, And Dragonair's infection is... bad, to say the least. But as story-telling elements? Oof. I DO wonder if Eevee's and Sylveon's deaths could have carried more emotional weight if they had been alert during that section, but... Well, I feel like it was done the way it was on purpose, so I'm not gonna complain about it.

Well, I'm a third of the way through things now. I'll just keep plugging along.
Dusk-Form chapter 1 . 7/6/2020
...first chapter and I am already intrigued
Windskull chapter 36 . 7/5/2020
So. Let's talk about episode 7. It... definitely took a turn I wasn't expecting.

At first I found myself going "is this what everyone always talks about? This isn't so bad." And then I got to the part where Shane attacks Tessa and went "Shane what the fuck." And. I got to say. I know my tolarence for asshole/unlikable protagonists is higher than a lot of peoples. But I think you did a pretty good job. Because coming out of that, I was mad at Shane, yes. But at the same time, I still both felt bad for Shane, Null, and Tessa, but was mad at them (particularly Shane and Tessa) at the same time. Null did bad things, partially because of something not totally in his control, but he at least owned up to and apologized for them.

And then the secoudn half... oof. That hit me right in an emotional spot. And I really loved the outcome of it. The party and the scene after it were both so nice, and seeing Shane trying to do better was a relief.

All that said, I do wonder if the leadup could have been handled a bit better. IDK why exactly, but although I could definitely imagine Shane picturing the newspaper with the news about Nicky, I also kind of feel like it came out kind of screenplay-like, for lack of a better term. I'll try to elaborate but this is kind of hard for me to put into words.

The way it's worded, talking about a newspaper flashing through his mind, followed specifically by the headline and nothing else, feels more like screenplay instructions for me. The first flash of the newspaper worked well enough but... idk, that one just stood out as kind of weird for me.

Regardless, I really did like this chapter. It took a while, but it was a major turning point for the characters, and one I can apreciate. That ending though... I'm not quite positive yet, but it DEFINITELY pushes me towards my suspicions that Tessa's dreams about Prisma are a trick. Like, the next one definitely will be, though whether the previous ones were isn't quite clear. I'm almost positive they were but... Well. I'll find out soon enough, I suppose.
Windskull chapter 28 . 7/5/2020
Hey there, Amby. Hope you're doing well. I read the first 20 or so chapters of GL a while back with a few others, and then kind of dropped it for a while, swearing I'd always get back to it. Well, I'm back.

Considering I still have... about 100 chapters to go, these reviews are going to be fairly light and just focus on my feelings about each episode, as opposed to discussing the technical side of things. I hope they're helpful, regardless.

With that preamble out of the way, let me talk about episode six. On the positive side of things, looking at Shane as a character, I'm glad he finally had more serious consequences for his actions. And that other pokemon called him out on it. I'll be honest. I like Shane. He's an asshole, but - in my opinion - every single negative action he's done thus far has been very believable based on what I've seen of him so far. Getting so suspicious of Lycanroc that he creates a self-fulfilling prophecy, all due to what equates to him using a nickname he has a sore spot over? Yes, it's assholish, but it also tracks with his actions thus far in the story. Was it wrong and insensitive of him to accuse Galian of being the mastermind in front of Tessa? Yes. But it tracks with his character. We'll see how I feel about him after I get through episode 7 though.

As for Tessa... her inner thoughts during what I would consider the emotional climax of this chapter makes it clear that, even if she hasn't really put a lot of thought into it, she's been using Shane, viewing him as a tool to lift herself up. I dunno. Not that Shane is much better.

As for the actual conflict with Lycanroc, I'm not sure how much the ending lands with me. Yes, it's established that Lycanroc hold grudges and that his pride was wounded but... Pretty much every single pokemon was on his side, and he went and threw that away over one Vupix.

The last thing I want to touch on briefly is the scene in Prisma's room. I'll be honest, after reading that, I'm not TOTALLY convinced that Tessa's mother is actually the one contacting her. Just like I'm not totally convinced Shane has been getting contacted by Solgaleo. Maybe I'm overthinking things, but the behavior of Prisma around Tessa, particularly in her dreams, and the picture painted by her room and what Briviary says to me that there's more to that situation than meets the eye, than what anyone knows. Something ain't right.

I feel like I could say something about the fact that it feels like somethings changing with Espy and Umbry, or how curious it is that there appears to be two Lunalas: the older one, and a younger one posessed by Necrozma. But I don't feel like I've fully formed those thoughts yet. I'll come back to them when I have more information.

Hm... I think that's everything I had to say about this one? See you soon enough for episode 7. Where Shane is TOTALLY going to take things well. Seriously though how did they ever get the idea that Shane would take the idea of disolving the team well?

Until next time.
Neirdae chapter 123 . 7/2/2020
Warning for those reading this review: It contains spoilers.

This was so nice and fluffy. I liked how you were able to express the relief and relaxation in these last few chapters.

For the story as a whole: It was very character focused. You took a huge risk with Shane in the beginning, and that certainly puts off many readers. At first it was nicely balanced, with Shane getting swift, natural consequences for being an idiot. Then it got worse, until it was really hard to read. Perhaps an author's note to tell people that things get better after chapter 33, as FF sees it.

I'm not quite satisfied with Silvally's arc, though. I expected his growth to have setbacks or complications once he was cheerful, due to his nature and biology. It came back to bite him in the finale, but I wasn't sold on a permanent character change when he first got his mind under control.

The official character pairings did not line up the way I thought they would, but that's all right.

The humor was done well. There was a lot of lewd humor, which some like, some don't.

The action got pretty crazy at times. It's hard to really express fight choreography in writing, especially when you get more than 3 characters fighting with supernatural abilities. Towards the end it went full anime fights, including a villain using Omnislash by another name.

Overall, great story. I had fun reading it.
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