The Evolution of Pokémon

In 1998 the first two Pokémon titles arrived on North American shores, and I, like almost everyone else at the time, was caught up in the Pokémania of the day. This was the first game that I got into the hype surrounding the title, and when I finally got the game, all I did was hunt down Pokémon and battle my friends at school. The hype wasn’t wrong; Pokémon kicked ass.

It’s been 10 years since I last bought a Pokémon title (the last being Pokémon Crystal for the Game Boy Color). Last Monday I bought Pokémon Platinum for the DS and, if you check out our Facebook fan page at all, you’ll notice that all our posts are either about Final Fantasy XIII or Pokémon Platinum. Again, it’s amazing, but I have the PokéFever and the only cure is to catch them all.

This iteration changes a lot from the old formula while keeping the addictive mechanics which made the originals so great. Now, you can battle people from all over the world and trade Pokémon with anyone over Wi-Fi. Suddenly, the whole struggle to be the very best has become realistic.

Now that I’m older, I realize that this is a deep RPG, perhaps one of the deepest as far as gameplay mechanics go. While the story in these titles has always been a little flimsy, it has never been about the story, but rather about the Pokémon themselves. Now that there are so many of them—and perhaps because I’m so unfamiliar with them—the games have become so much more challenging. Whenever I fight someone in game, they throw out a Pokémon I’ve never seen before. Suddenly, it becomes a race against time to figure out what can take down this unknown Pokémon.

Yeah, so what are these things?

When I talked to my friend about Pokémon Platinum, I told him that this was the best Pokémon title I’ve ever played, which he was surprised about. He figured I’d be a PokéPurist. But everything feels so much deeper now. All the best parts from the previous iterations return and are improved upon, and yes, there are those purists out there that believe there should only be 151 Pokémon, but let’s face facts folks. 151 Pokémon really isn’t that much. Now there are close to 500, and half the fun in the game is discovering all the new creatures.

So why haven’t I played Pokémon before Platinum? Probably for the same reason many people don’t pick up every iteration of Pokémon: the series doesn’t exactly revolutionize itself with every version. Furthermore, and I think this is a fair point, Pokémon has done itself a great disservice by marketing itself to only younger audiences. If you look at some of the newer Pokémon, they look a lot more exciting and a whole hell of a lot less cuddly. Thank God for that.

Way cooler than the other games

I’m not the biggest anime fan, but the movies are ridiculous. I remember sitting in the theater as a kid and feeling embarrassed to be watching Pokémon the Movie; I wanted to apologize to my mom for having to bring me to the movie. They are overtly sentimental, have ridiculously corny moments, and completely take me out of the games. The characters in the games have always taken the Gordon Freeman vow of silence, which is a good thing; if anyone had the same annoying voice of Ash, I would have probably stopped playing the series a long time ago and never have come back. I don’t care about Ash, or Brock, or Misty; the movies can try to get me to care, but all they’ll end up doing is jamming unnecessary contrived plots down my throat.

Lame

Between the anime and the movies, Pokémon has become something just for little kids. The older audiences have nearly completely given up on the games. After all, why play a children’s RPG when you can play something like the Final Fantasy series with its mature storylines and deep characters? We’re the generation of Call of Dutys and Grand Theft Autos, and while there is an older audience still interested in Pokémon, we’ve largely outgrown Pokémon. It’s simply not cool to like these games—it’s like the housewives who go see Twilight in theaters fifteen times so they can get their creepy Edward Cullen fix.

Lamer

That’s a shame. I’ve fallen in love with this game all over again, and since I’m not cool (although I’m certainly not Twilight lame), it doesn’t bother me to like Pokémon one bit, but more people should be into this game. Especially now that you can play against anyone at any time over Wi-Fi, if you’re not playing Pokémon, you’re not playing the best portable RPG available. Ignore the anime and the movies (or don’t if you’re a fan—I know you’re out there, and I’m not hating), get over the hate surrounding Pokémon, and get to catching. I challenge anyone to a battle, because I will be the best PokéMaster.

Bring the pain, bitches.

Look for my official review of Pokémon Platinum next Friday.

Written by Neutrally Chaotic

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One Response

  1. […] Esta semana, las conversaciones Chaotic neutral sobre la serie de Pokémon y por qué usted debe comenzar a la atención de nuevo. URL del artículo original https://moralitypoints.wordpress.com/2010/03/12/the-evolution-of-pokemon/ […]

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