With the latest Pokemon games coming out soon, I thought I'd take a moment to talk about five things that would improve the series, like I did with Fire Emblem previously. And, like that list, these are all opinion. Maybe you have your own good ideas for the series. Feel free to leave a comment about those. That being said, here are my ideas in no particular order.

1. No More HMs. 

HMs have long been a staple of the franchise. At first, it was a clever little idea as a plot device to block off areas of the game in order to have a linear progression. However, the idea came with a massive downside. Gamers were stuck with moves that weren't that great and that they couldn't get rid of. Later generations added the Move Deleter to address that but the problem there was that the HMs were still necessary to access various areas, prompting many gamers to create "HM slaves" who served no other purpose but to carry those HM moves. Then we got the sixth generation and something happened, TMs were altered to be permanent, rather than one use items. At this point, there's no more reason to have HMs at all since the major separation betwixt TMs & HMs was that TMs were one time items while HMs could be used as many times as the player wanted. Which was mostly once since HM moves are generally not very good. Just make moves like Cut, Surf and Fly TMs so that they can be readily replaced when they aren't needed. Or do what they did with the Eon Flute in ORAS and provide items that can be used to replace the HMs. HMs had their place but, at this point, they're just out-dated and annoying.

2. Trainer Customization from the Start

Yes, I like character customization. And One welcome addition to X &  Y  was the ability to change your trainer's look by buying various outfits or changing their hair and even eye color. However, the series could do this better by letting you put in those options at the beginning. As it is, you get three pre-set choices after you select your trainer's sex and the same outfit. At least let us select what our hair and eyes look like right from the start and would it really be that bad to let us have some clothing options? 

3. New Game Plus.

One  thing that kind of sucks in Pokemon is that you can't start a new game without losing or transferring everything. But what if Pokemon added some replay value with a new game plus feature? Here's what I'm thinking for it: Items carry over. Outfits you've bought carry over so that you have even more options from the get go. You can carry six level five or lower Pokemon over, enabling you to start with a different kind of team but without giving you something so high level that it would be too easy. Pokedex data carries over, so that if you don't want to bother catching certain things again there's no pressure to. 

4. Allow Players to Require Items on the GTS. 

The global trade system is a great way to get a hold of Pokemon that you have to trade for, but there's a big flaw with it as is. I'm talking about Pokemon that evolve by holding a certain item. If you want an Electivire, Magmortar, Slowking, Politoad, etc... you'd better find someone who will trade you one or trade something ridiculous for one on the GTS. Wouldn't it be so much easier if you could offer a Poliwhirl with a king's rock and request a Poliwhirl with a king's rock? Now, I don't doubt that some people would ask for absurd items and unfair trades. However, that's something they already do. How many people are offering common, readily available Pokemon for legendaries on the GTS right now? It's making it really hard for me to find someone who will give me a Palkia for my awesome Weedle.

5. Gym Fights in Any Order. 

This one probably sounds crazy. After all, the last gym has such high level Pokemon. How would you make this work? That being said, I got the idea from the anime, Pokemon Origins. In that series, we see Brock pick his Pokemon based on the number of badges a challenger has. Wouldn't it be interesting if the gyms in the game had the same kind of system, with them becoming progressively more difficult based on the player's badges? Not only that, but it would add to the replayability since you could play again and take on the leaders in a different order for a different experience. Sure, the game would have to be less linear, but would that be a bad thing? I think not. 

There you have it, my five ideas for making the Pokemon games more interesting. Maybe you agree, maybe you think I'm an eccentric nutter. Feel free to tell me in the comments. I'm always up for hearing about how crazy I am.