Tag Archives: Pokémon Red and Blue

First Impression: Pokémon Black & White (DS) ~ Late to the party.

Pokemon_Black_Box_Artwork

Official website

Before start this blog, I want to apologize for not posting for a while. I have been quite busy with my personal life. Follow me on my twitter if you need to know more. Anyways, I realize too that I am extremely late starting to play this entry in the Pokémon series. But I have distracted by other games. Yeah, that excuse will convince you. I hope. Anyways, I’m playing it now and as long time Pokémon fan I feel mixed about this entry. And I shall explain why in this first impression. Remember that these is what I think when first playing the game. Anyways, I’m going to play the sequel after this and I will probably buy the next installment on the 3DS. Anyways, let me know in the comments what you think of my opinion and what you thought yourself when you first started to play this game. Oh, and I place the Pokémon Black box-art here since that’s the version I’m playing through.

Updated yet step back.

516677-pokemon-black-version-nintendo-ds-screenshot-title-screenThis game has a few flaws. And I want to direct here. This game feels like how Pokémon Mystery Dungeon – Gates To Infinity cuts a lot of things. It’s a great game in many ways but I dislike many things. One major example is the unhandy menu.

Seriously, who thought of the menu? It’s such a neat idea for having some items like the drowsing machine on the bottom screen but the menu is also displayed on that bottom screen. So what happens is that you have to switch if you want to take something from your bag. This could easily have been avoided or solved if they used tabs in this game to easily switch between your items.

What I feel is a downfall in this game is that the creativity in the Pokémon design is a bit lacking. Some Pokémon don’t look as original as all the previous generations. I keep asking myself, why don’t they stop creating new Pokémon and just use the overflow of Pokémon they have? The legendary Pokémon don’t feel as legendary anymore either.

Also, they removed the ability of a Pokémon running behind you. A feature I extremely liked in Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver. It does make those games more unique and it gives them a reason to replay them yet the PokéWalker was doing that for Nintendo already.

And what I also find disappointing as well is the fact you can’t name your friends. This which such a nice feature in every previous game. Now they just have names already. Awn, no fun Game Freak.

More 3D

imagesVisually this game is extremely well done. In presentation of the world, it’s a great job. The seasons are such an amazing idea and the Pokémon that fly by, it pulled me into the game without a doubt. Yet, I wished that the seasons where set with the calender instead of somewhat random. Since it confuses me that it’s autumn in the game while it’s summer here for me.

Apart from some not so creative Pokémon, this game brings a lot of features I like to the table. A feature where you can quickly access often used features is such a great addition. I said earlier that the drowsing machine has gotten an amazing upgrade. The trainer card is what it’s supposed to be now. You can make a greeting, put your mood and your trainer style! Great work.

I love running through the new world. The camera is such a nice thing. In certain area’s it shows you the area’s from the side or from other directions. Something I felt that was missing from the series for a long time.

The battles, while not perfect, have gotten a major step in the right direction. The battle screen is more animated and the camera moves more with the attacks instead of standing still. The animation is one of the better I have seen in the Pokémon games and it really sets the bar high for the next games.

Nods to the older games

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This game does feel more realistic. But I doubt if this will make the game timeless. But that’s something that we will need to see in the future. But the game’s story is one that caught my attention. It’s different and it’s really fine from what I read now.

But the game has also nods to the older games. It like starting your journey at a young age or the guys of GameFreak putting themselves in the game. Nice easter egg guys.

The music is enjoyable but doesn’t have the magic that older music has. It’s probably the nostalgia factor for me but it’s not bad. The sound effects are what you are used to of Pokémon.

The game has a lot to offer. It seems that this game is extremely long too. And finally, there is now a good reason to choose between the two versions. Pokémon Black and White have a location that is exclusive to that game. The difference isn’t simply some Pokémon and the legendary one anymore. Thank the lords.

In conclusion, this game does a lot to pull you in. There are a lot of features I haven’t yet seen in the game. Like wild battles with two Pokémon instead of one, I haven’t messed around with that enough to give my full opinion. It’s clear to me already that this game is a good game but it’s far from perfect. It’s a step in the right direction for the series. So, another game I will have to review when I finally finished it. Oh dear, I better get back to playing so I can post my final thoughts on it. Take care and thanks for reading!

Review #010: Pokémon Blue/Red/Yellow (GB) ~ Good old days

Blue-and-Red

Wikipedia entry

It’s the year 2000. Pokémon is extremely popular and the first game for on the gameboy is about to reach store shelves. And critics praised it for one of the best games for the system. And it was a launch game. As a child, I played this game an awful lot. Not understanding a word from what they were saying, but I continued on. My basic English comes from this game. But let’s review it now. Has this game given me some nostalgia goggles? Will I rate this game high because it has child hood memories or will I rip it to pieces now that I’m older? Well, let’s take a look into the cult classic Pokémon Red, Blue and Yellow for a proper review.

Shouting everywhere.

While writing this review, the game is running on the TV next to me. Thanks to the SuperGameboy and my trusty SNES. But what I noticed is that many things are shouted. Like “TEAM ROCKET” or any attack name. Image Pokémon like this in real life, each time something important is used, you have to shout it out loud.

pokemon_blue_02

What’s Pokémon about? Well, your goal is that you capture monsters living in the wild, train them to become stronger and so defeating the elite 4. On your journey you need to defeat the eight gym leaders to prove you are worthy to challenge the elite 4.

This concept is great and works extremely well. But in your journey you will have to fight the bad guys named Team Rocket and stop their evil plans. The plot, while basic, is great. It doesn’t go too deep and it’s great for a kids game like this. It’s understandable for the younger audience. At the end, there is also a plot twist. But I’m not going to spoil it since I’m quite sure most of you readers know what I’m talking about.

So, with a good story, let’s move on to the graphical side of things. The graphics of this game are great and not that great at the same time. While it surely looks pretty on the gameboy limited hardware, some sprites for your own Pokémon look bad. Take for example Metapod, he looks kinda scary when you use him as a Pokémon.

A battle of sounds

gfs_4611_2_27So, I said that the graphics look good? Yes, the caves look cave-y. The forests look forest-y. But it doesn’t do anything special. In the sequel, the graphics are way better, but there it’s improved for better hardware.

I can’t be too harsh on the graphics. The artwork and the design of the game follows the anime series extremely well and surely make you feel like you where actually travelling along side Ash. Especially when you played Pokémon Yellow, where Pikachu walked behind you. You were able to click on him for seeing his mood in a small animation.

There is a nice use of animations in the game as well. For the more powerful attacks, the screen can flash and or shake. But some effects have minor issues. For example, when your Pokémon is at low health, the sound effects and the music are having a sort of battle in terms of which sound-effect is allowed to play.

Let’s talk about the music and sound-effects. They are top notch. The music is melodic and sets the tone just right for any situation. Each track might just be around a minute or two long, but it rarely gets old. I even like to play the music when I’m on the road. And when the music plays, I truly can image being on a bike or on the sea.

The sound-effects are doing what good sound-effects are supposed to do. Draw you into the gameplay even more. The let you know if an item is used, when your Pokémon is getting attacked and so on and on. And the library of sound-effects is pretty expansive since all the 151 different Pokémon have their very own tune.

Walking and more walking

177467-pokemon-blue-version-game-boy-screenshot-rattata-vs-kakunas

Okay, we all know the complaint that psychic Pokémon where overpowered in the first generation. But the different Pokémon types are such an amazing addition to the gameplay. It truly makes you think in which Pokémon you are going to take in your party.

Pokémon is set up in such a way that it’s extremely replayable. You can set up yourself many different challenges like the Nutzlocke challenge. (Releasing a Pokémon when it fainted) or trying to catch all the Pokémon.

But you can only do that when you have a friend with the other version of the game. Which worked for friends to have some amazing trades and battles. If I remember correctly, one or two Pokémon only evolved when you traded them, but that could have been in later generations tough.

Is this game perfect, well no. There are some issues with this game I think bring this classic down. For starters, something I don’t see a lot on other reviews is that the characters are so bland. No one of the characters really gets depth nor explained. they are just there. And congrats to the writers making such an amazing tale with such “empty shells” of characters.

Another thing is that some Pokémon spam one status attack. Like attacks that make you sleep or steal health. It’s frustrating seeing this happen over and over again.

The inventory is a mess. Items are everywhere. Lucky for us, in the sequels they have addressed this issue and improved upon it.

Also, this game has hands down, the strangest glitches I have ever seen in a gameboy game. And there are a lot of them. Many glitches I wished where patched.

So, I’m going to leave it here for Pokémon. Let’s get on to the conclusion.

Conclusion

The good:

+ Nice tale.

+ Epic world.

+ Quite lengthy.

+ Highly replayable.

+ Memorable music and sounds.

+ Amazing gameplay.

The bad:

– Sound issues.

– Glitches.

– “Empty Shell” characters.

– Spamming of one attack.

My verdict:

You can’t escape the fact that this Pokémon game is pretty amazing. While it has it’s flaws, it still is able to keep up a certain charm. It isn’t old, and it will never be. Thanks to the various improvements of the sequels and later entries, this game looks dated.

Yet this game stays fun for picking up memories. It’s an easy RPG and it’s fun with the capital F. So, play it now and enjoy it.

Score: 90 / 100