It’s very easy to be cynical. Indeed, it’s hard not to shake your head at a series which has produced a dozen variants all cut through the same template and generated billions in merchandising. However you start playing and you also quickly realise that Nintendo’s staggering sales of 155 million Pokemon cartridges have a lot more related to exquisite game design than exploitative marketing. Even individuals who have already lost hours and hours in a quest to “catch ’em all” will see themselves hooked over again.
Given that there is a bulging roster of 493 critters to trap, raise, battle, preen and breed, inevitably a few of 100 pokemon diamond do not have the creativity and charisma of old favourites. But the charm in the pocket monsters remains a key ingredient with what makes these games so pleasurable. Another crucial component is just how convincing, consistent and engaging the planet is always to explore. The Sinnoh region is an excellent place to visit.
Pokemon’s battle product is very easy to learn but surprisingly strategic and tactically deep. Assembling a well-rounded team that will defeat any opponent requires careful thought and proves very satisfying.
The very best news for mothers and fathers is the fact %anchor1 represent the best value the gaming industry provides. Immensely deep and captivating, players can spend dozens upon dozens of hours attempting to foil Team Galactic’s nefarious plans as well as exploring underground caverns mining for treasure, entering talent shows, growing and harvesting berries, cooking treats for his or her critters and attempting to capture elusive wild creatures.
Most additional features are minor improvements, such as the Poketech device, which may work as a wrist watch, pedometer, radar, notebook and display the status of your menagerie. The most significant addition is wi-fi internet support, which lets faraway friends battle and trade creatures.
A great deal has changed on earth of Pokémon since we last visited in Emerald. Obviously, the addition of more than a hundred new creatures – a few of which are baby versions or evolutions of older Pokémon, like a pre-evolution of Mantine and new forms for single-stage monsters like Lickitung and Aipom – form most of the excitement that surrounds the coming of those new adventures.
However it runs a hell of the lot deeper than only a few new arrivals. The battle system has become reworked in the most significant switch to the basic principles of battling since the Special stat was broken down into individual attack and inlqrn values after the first games turned into somewhat broken. Where before each move would utilize a particular stat based on its type alignment (so, fire type moves would use Special Attack while Rock moves would continue Attack), now each move is classed as either Physical or Special and uses the correct stat. This reveals move set possibilities that could never before been employed and opens the door for many previously overlooked monsters to step-up and become legitimate possibilities for competitive play.
And just as new evolutions and move sets try to level the playing field somewhat, so too does the addition of numerous new attacks and abilities. Bug and Ghost types are far better catered for with an array of new attack and support moves, and several older attacks have already been given elemental counterparts, such as Fighting and Water versions of Quick Attack. There are also a number of new attacks that make once unusable Pokémon viable, specifically in 2 vs 2 battles.
Power Trick can change defensive legend Shuckle right into a demon by swapping its minimal attack stat featuring its astronomical defence; Trick Room lets slower Pokémon attack first for many turns, making the likes of Snorlax and Steelix that much more imposing; moves like Bug Devour and Hurl utilize held items (both yours as well as the opponents) to deal damage accordingly. Whatever type you tend to favour, you’ll find at least a few helpful new moves here to complement any move set.