Review by KeyBlade999

Reviewed: 07/21/10

Silver typically means second-best ... NOT THIS TIME!

Ahhh... Pokemon. Admittedly, one of my favorite games - and that means something, considering the number of games I have: 200+! For some time now, it has been rinse and repeat, remake after remake. However, this isn't truly a remake at all. Like you did in Pokemon Silver on the Game Boy Color, you will go through Johto and Kanto. But, this is different. This isn't the era of the Game Boy - it's the DS's time to shine! With new touch-sensitive features, many more multiplayer activities and sidequests, and almost double the number of Pokemon to catch, this game will be one you'll enjoy for many, many years.

Back in the late 1990s, Nintendo decided to go for an idea a little awkward: Pokemon. Like you when it was first introduced, it was met with confusion and doubts. However, Mario was just as weird, and look at his success, so they decided to go with it. In 1998 (I think) of that year, the Pokemon titles Red and Blue/Green (and later, Yellow) were released for the Game Boy. These games were truly a great hit then, and people who have them won't sell them easily - they're that good! It brought about the Pokemon revolution.

Later, the Game Boy Color titles Pokemon Gold, Silver, and Crystal were released. Like Pokemon SoulSilver will, they introduced (and still have) an unique concept and story: becoming the champion of Johto and Kanto.

Almost a decade later, these games are very rare, and the consoles are just as rare. Nintendo decided on one thing that would really bring in the cash - remake what were possibly the greatest games they ever made. Red and Blue has a remake, why not Gold and Silver? And so, with many changes, the game we know as Pokemon SoulSilver came to be,

GAMEPLAY: 10/10.
The Pokemon gameplay has remained the same for the past twelve or so years, why would it change now? Basically, you're going to go across Johto and Kanto, collecting Pokemon and kicking the crap out of other Pokemon. Like in every one thus far, you will, once you beat eight Gyms, attempt to beat the regional champion and enter the Hall of Fame.

But what about Kanto? Well, like before, you're going to go through THEIR Gyms and ... whoa, hold it! The Kanto and Johto championships take place at the same place, against the same people! How are to prove yourself? By beating the person who first stopped Team Rocket single-handedly - Red (or Ash from the anime). It will be the most epic battle you've ever seen.

After this, you can play the various minigames or complete the 493 entries of your Pokedex - a nearly impossible task. New minigames and features are in. The Pal Park allows you to import Pokemon from your GBA games, a quick aid to your quest. The Pokeathelon is somewhat like a Pokemon contest, pitting you against other trainers where performance is based on certain stats. The Battle Frontier is similar to the one of previous Generation III/IV games, but better - with FIVE total areas!

There are also some multiplayer functions. You can battle and trade Pokemon using your DS's Wi-Fi or by using Nintendo WFC. You can do the Pokeathelon against up to three more friends or do some contest at the Safari Zone (never cared for it, anyways). You can partner up with someone at the Battle Frontier over Wi-Fi or WFC, even Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum!

But, after completing everything, even the Pokedex, there is little left to do. The best thing to do is to start over again, or keep it for battles/tourneys.

Included with this game is something similar to what was out around the time of the original Gold/Silver games - a Pokewalker. This allows you to simply walk around with your Pokemon. Like the ...thing that used to be out, it allows you to walk with a Pokemon. However, it doesn't have to be just Pikachu, but any Pokemon!

Using it, you, your actual self, walks around, playing Wii or going to school, gathering steps on the Pokewalker. 20 of these steps make a Watt. These Watts can be used for many things. Okay, really, just two things. The Poke Radar will allow the Pokemon on the Pokewalker to fight another wild Pokemon, which can be caught. The battle system is VERY primitive, the most complex thing being the percentages on which a Pokemon is caught. The Dowsing Rod, the second feature, allows you get an item from a limited group. These items are usually common, and can be berries or other things.

You can also make the Pokewalker communicate with another and battle the Trainer at some place in Kanto, I think.

Another cool feature of this is that if you lose it, you can get the Pokemon back! However, you'll lose all bonuses. The other cool feature of this is that, if you walk enough, the Pokemon can level up!

STORY: 9/10.
One day, in your hometown of New Bark in the Johto region, Professor Elm asks you to do a small errand for him. You are to take a letter or something to a friend of his north of Cherrygrove. At the same time, he wants you to walk around with a Pokemon to see how it behaves differently than one out of a Pokeball. You choose one of the Generation II starters and you're on your way.

Eventually, you come back to let you mom know what you're doing after this - going to beat all eight Johto Gyms! She let's you go and you go on your journey. It is not to be a peaceful one, however. Team Rocket, defeated three years ago in Kanto, has become very active in Johto. You, like Red, end up by defeating and truly finishing them off single-handedly.

Eventually, you become Johto's champion. You are now going to travel to Kanto in the east. There, you fight their eight Gyms, including one owned by Red's rival, Blue, and wonder how to become the true champion. Oak gives you an idea - climb Mt. Silver. An odd idea, yes, but you do so. At the top, you find the legendary Trainer, the first to single-handedly stop Team Rocket, possibly the strongest Trainer ever, Red (Ash from the anime). You will end up defeating him, and truly be a Pokemon Master.

The graphics are quite similar to those of the other Generation IV games: the view is slightly slanted down from the bird's-eye view in all of the other games before Generation IV. This game also has better 3D graphics, as it runs on the same 3D engine-thingy that Platinum runs on! The sprites are vibrant and colorful, as usual, and everything is beautifully remade from the original Pokemon Silver, and even from FireRed/LeafGreen (Kanto, anyways...)! And there is SO much to see. 493 Pokemon, two whole regions, so many new contests and features, and beautifully remade and redesigned graphics. You will enjoy them.

The sound effects are practically all off of Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum. I know, I'm sorry, but it's true. All 493 Pokemon cries, some battle music, and the music in the field. The only new part of these is the music in the Pokeathelon and the Battle Frontier. Nevertheless, I like hearing it all, over again. Why? The DS's speakers do produce virtual surround sound, made even better by the earphone jack. And, oddly, the sound effects sound like they've been cleaned up and remixed VERY slightly. Great, though!

PLAY TIME: 10/10.
I like my games like this - the game can't take one whole day to finish. It took me about 45 hours spread out over about a week or two to finish the main storyline. However, there is one part I dislike - the Pokedex completion quest. Yes, it is quite an accomplishment to do without cheating, but it takes SOOOOOOOOOO dang long! It took me more than a whole year to finish my Diamond Pokedex. The only reason why I finished the SoulSilver Pokedex in much less time is because of the Pokemon I had on Diamond and Pearl.

Well, the actual score depends on how much you completed the game before restarting. If you played for and just the storyline, it is a great idea. You have virtually nothing to lose. But if you completed it all, Pokedex and everything else, you're in for a world of hurt. That file is probably very valuable to you then. Erasing it is erasing all of your long, hard work. In that case, it would be best to keep it and stick to the other minigames in it. In the other case, go right ahead - the story and challenges are always great to re-experience!

THE END: Overall score: 10/10.
Well, there's your review for Pokemon SoulSilver. I hope you've enjoyed and that I helped you decide whether to buy it - which you should. More multiplayer, better graphics, and a larger adventure and Pokedex to complete make this a game truly worth your while.

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Product Release: Pokemon SoulSilver Version (US, 03/14/10)

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