I was stupidly optimistic that there would be actual changes. All of the changes (even the Recon Squad) didn't really affect the game. The conversations you have with them are inserted in a way that you could basically remove the Recon Squad and it would change nothing about the scene, really.
Honestly, a real sequel might've been just as cheap, but the way Looker, Anabel, and Nanu (and their actually interesting backstories) were shafted was shit. "Complete" shouldn't mean removing parts that give other characters personality or a history and replacing it with ones that don't. Mina's trial, for example, was cute, but it didn't really add to anything. I thought for sure there'd be at least one more island and the Wormholes/Ultra Megalopolis would be... something?
There's nothing wrong with the region it just felt less "epic" than others and for a while I thought it was size and that the fault was in 3D but XY still managed to have real dungeons and puzzles and even if it had the same amount of content, the content wasn't huge amounts of backtracking.
At this point I want more plot to it. What they started in XY's epilogue has left me wanting more with Looker than ever and I was scammed into buying this one with the hope that I'd get more of SM's epilogue (which when I think about it is really the only glowing review I have of SM). I don't think the region was shit, but it just was lacking and it shouldn't have been, especially when they put all this effort into giving us different geography?