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Pokemon Black 2 Review by Fraser Graham (DS)

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Original Pokemon Red Screenshot

 

 

“Gotta catch ‘em all!” the catch phrase of the ever popular RPG: Pokémon and with the total number of Pokemon rising to a staggering 649 on Pokémon Black and White 2 (that’s not even including the new ones from the pending release of the newest games X and Y later this year on the 3DS) there is a lot of catching to be done!

Now, if you are like me and remember the first incarnations of Pokémon (being Red and Blue on the original handheld beast; the Nintendo Gameboy, then it’s amazing to see just how far things have progressed over the years! Gone are the days of static, pixelated 8-bit graphics and sounds that were worse than your dad’s singing on New Year’s, and here are the days of brightly coloured and detailed 2D/3D animals that attack at your very whim and games that use actual orchestral samples for the in-game music creating original Pokémon songs! In fact one of the gym leaders in Pokémon Black/White 2 is a lead guitarist and singer in a band and as you walk into her gym you get to hear a little Pokémon ditty she sings that is quite infectious!

As for the little critters themselves, well if you thought 151 were hard to choose from in Red/Blue/Yellow, then were bamboozled at the choice of 251 in Gold/Silver and Crystal, flabbergasted at the range of 386 Ruby/Sapphire and Emerald, positively confounded at the variation of selection from 493 in Diamond/Pearl and Platinum then my friends you shall be severely spoiled for choice in the Black and White range of a whopping 649! And let me tell you, they are definitely looking stranger and more intriguing!

As the games have developed from a straight forward mission, that consisted of catching all existing Pokémon, beating the 8 gym leaders, defeating team (insert name here) and then onwards to battle the Elite Four and the current champ to claim your place as a Pokémon master, there has been more than a few additions over the last decade or so. Not only do the progressive titles in the series keep to the original set mission but there are far more things to do in the world of Pokémon. With such diverse things as the introduction of gender, giving the option to become a Pokémon breeder, Pokémon beauty pageants, battle towers, World championships, and the very new option of becoming a movie star at PokeStar studio’s, where you film against a green screen and choose your script to be shown in a cinema, which in turn can make you a famous movie star (provided you perform well!)

Now my next point is a strange one for Nintendo to do, something they haven’t done with any of the previous Pokémon games: Pokémon Black/White 2 is a sequel to the fifth generation of Pokémon games, known as Pokémon Black & Pokémon White. Players return to the captivating Unova region two years after the events of the original Black/White games (the first time in the core Pokémon game series that a storyline has continued from one game to another). Players can explore new areas, discover Gyms with new leaders and see how everything has changed in the last two years. These new games were intriguing to say the least; how would the designers change the game so that it feels like a fresh perspective, would the changes make you feel like you were playing a real sequel or just a follow-up that would have a second rate storyline that would bore you in half an hour or less? Well yours truly has had an extensive go at the new game and I must admit I am shocked at how well they have told this new story. The programmers have changed enough details to make you feel like time has passed, and added a new, in depth, storyline to cement the idea of the sequel rather than a 3rd game of the set. Pokémon has become very advanced in these latest incarnations, there is so much to do, even the most experienced veteran would have a hard time completing the game in its entirety but it is still an exciting and fun game, no matter what age you are.

I gave this game 40/42 and that’s only due to the cross game trading, Pokémon Black 2 can only trade with its immediate predecessors white and black so that unfortunately means you’ll have to do you’re trading over multiple games if you want to catch ‘em all!

 

 

 

Overall Score - 95%