Pokémon Black and White Review

Discussion in 'GBAtemp Reviews & Guides' started by soulx, Mar 12, 2011.

Mar 12, 2011

Pokémon Black and White Review by soulx at 5:13 PM (4,847 Views / 0 Likes) 32 replies

  1. soulx
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    Member soulx GBAtemp Legend

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    [​IMG]
    Time Elapsed: 28:24
    Started Game: March 6th, 2011
    Pokedex: 131[/p]
    I purchased Pokémon White on March 6th eagerly anticipating the adventure I was about to undergo in the game. I opened the package rather calmly and later put the cartridge inside my DS Lite. What happened afterwards perplexed, amazed and astounded me.

    The games begins with the game's professor sending a package to your house with the starters for this gen. You have to choose from the usual fire, grass and water one. Right after that, you battle with two of your rivals inside your home. The game then introduces you to the new battle system. The first thing you notice is that the Pokemon are not static anymore. They move during the battle. This adds a welcome touch to the battle experience. Another thing that you notice is that the camera angle changes throughout the battle. This is a nice touch as the camera highlights certain aspects of an attack animation among other stuff. Like other Pokémon games before it, you then go to the lab of the game's professor who in this case is Professor Juniper. After that, you go on with your journey throughout the new Unova region.

    [​IMG]
    One of the new Pokémon in the Unova region

    As you proceed through the game, you will notice a variety of new Pokémon. Gamefreak made it so that you wouldn't encounter any of the Pokemon from previous regions so as to make the game feel fresh. That works pretty well up to a point. Some of the Pokemon in the game look downright horrible (eg. Trubbish) when compared to the Pokémon of previous generations. Other Pokemon like Serperior and Haxorus look great.

    The plot as with most Pokemon games consists of a team trying to change the world with a legendary Pokemon. The plot isn't exactly the same as previous games, though and has several major differences. The malevolent team (Team Plasma) seeks to liberate Pokemon from humans as they feel that humans strip Pokemon of their full potential and use them as tools. This can be compared to real-life organization PETA as Team Plasma and them have similar goals but with animals instead of Pokemon. Later on in the game, you find out that Team Plasma is not as they seem and have a different goal in mind and a hidden mastermind behind all this. This adds for an interesting plot twist. I'll refrain from delving into this to prevent major spoilers.

    Certain aspects of the game have been improved. TMs (Technical Machines) are not limited to one use, anymore. They're now unlimited allowing you to teach different Pokémon the same move as many times as you want. Pokemarts and Pokemon Centers are now combined into one place. HMs are not used prominently throughout the game so and HM Slave isn't necessary. One of my favourite additions is that there are now doctors on most long routes who you battle. After you win the battle, the doctors fully heal your Pokemon. This is a welcome addition as now players don't have to ride all the way back to a Pokémon Center to heal the HP/PP of their Pokemon. Another thing I've noticed is that the single-player campaign is much longer when compared to Pokémon games before. This is yet another pleasant addition.

    [​IMG]
    The harbor of Castelia City

    Pokémon Black and White is the most enthralling Pokémon game, yet with a number of significant changes. The game feels fresh and is enjoyable to play. I do lament the fact that Gamefreak used the same engine used in the fourth generation of Pokemon games, though. The vast number of changes to the graphics and gameplay of the game make up for it, though. One of the significant changes to the battle system is the addition of triple and rotation battles. These add much-needed depth and strategy to the game's battle system. Sadly, triple and rotation battles are few and far between in the single player campaign. I'm puzzled as to why Gamefreak didn't incorporate more triple and rotation battles throughout the game considering they were advertising triple and rotation battles often.

    This game has tremendous replay value. There's a Battle Subway for battling trainers and gaining battle points. You can also trade Pokémon with people around the world using the GTS (Global Trade System). The multiplayer aspect of the game is great. You can battle random people from all over the world using Wi-Fi or face a friend who lives on the other side of the globe by using friend-codes. My favourite addition to online multiplayer battles is triple battles as this makes online battles much more complex.

    Another new feature in Pokémon Black and White is the C-Gear. The C-Gear is similar to the Poketch and PokeNav of previous generations. The C-Gear can be used to battle and trade quickly using the IR chip in the game card. One of the more notable features of the C-Gear is Game Sync. Game Sync allows you to synchronize the games save file to the Global Link (a multiplayer feature in Black and White) and access the Dream World. I haven't accessed the Global Link, though because it doesn't open in North America/Europe until March 30th. I'll update this review accordingly when the Global Link opens. The most well known feature of the C-Gear is the Xtransceiver. The Xtransceiver allows you to videochat with other players using the C-Gear's wireless feature. It can only be used on the DSi or DSi XL, though because the Xtransceiver uses the camera on those systems. One problem with the C-Gear is that it always has wireless on causing it to drain the battery life of your DS system. Luckily, you can turn it off.


    Elite Four Battle Music
    The music in this game is wonderful as is with most Pokemon games. I enjoyed the music tremendously. Almost every tune in the game is catchy and memorable and brings a smile to face. The tunes in the game do not feel out of place at all. I also enjoy some of the extra touches done by Nintendo regarding music. If your Pokemon's HP is low, the game will play a remixed version of the battle music. This also occurs when you're at a gym leader's last Pokemon. Small touches like this add to the enjoyment of the game.

    Pokémon Black and White also has a new feature called the Wonder Launcher. The Wonder Launcher allows you to use items during multiplayer battles. Items are not used in the conventional way, though. Throughout the multiplayer battle, you earn points. You use the points you earned to purchase items. It works quite well based on my experience.

    Overall, Pokémon Black and White is a great game that I enjoyed a lot. Aside from a few minor problems, the game feels fresh and is really fun. I would definitely recommend purchasing this game!

    Score: 9.5​
    Great game that's worth a purchase​

    This review was written for DSDatabase and GBAtemp only. If you see it posted anywhere else, please notify me immediately. I haven't finished every post-story quest, yet. I've finished enough of the game (entire single player campaign) to get a good enough feel of the game to review it. This review will be updated once the Global Link is open (March 30th, 2011).
     


  2. Devin

    Member Devin "Local Hardware Wizard"

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    *Claps* Summed up the game pretty nicely. I wasn't interested in it at first, considering that when I tried HeartGold I quit it immediately. However, when I tried Pokemon Black out it really created a "fresh" start. The Pokemon could use a makeover, new looks/names. Ducklett is a blue duck sprite, and Beartic is a "Arctic" bear.
     
  3. Demonbart

    Member Demonbart GBATemp's guitar hero

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    TM = Technical machine, not transfer machine.
    Great review nontheless [​IMG]
     
  4. haddad

    Member haddad GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    nice review thanks.
     
  5. Fear Zoa

    Member Fear Zoa This... This is the world we live in

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    Good review....It really is a good game

    My only complaint would be that the sprites in battle are a bit low quality (although I'm almost 100% sure this is due to space issues)
     
  6. soulx
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    Member soulx GBAtemp Legend

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    I doubt that's the reason.

    If Gamefreak wanted to, they could have used high resolution sprites. This would have taken quite a bit of time, though considering there are over 600 Pokémon. The reason as to why they didn't high resolution sprite is probably because of time constraints.
     
  7. Fear Zoa

    Member Fear Zoa This... This is the world we live in

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    Ehhh I don't see game freak being lazy.....

    I just think all the sprites would make the game too big for the card....I believe theres a 256mb limit atm
     
  8. soulx
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    Member soulx GBAtemp Legend

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    There isn't a 256MB limit for the DS game card. DS game cards range from 64Mbit to 4Gbit.

    Well, we can't assume they were being lazy. They may have had to meet a deadline and weren't able to make high resolution sprites of every single Pokémon in time.
     
  9. floydo

    Member floydo GBAtemp Regular

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    This actually makes me want to buy it instead of downloading it. It seems well worth the money
     
  10. Demonbart

    Member Demonbart GBATemp's guitar hero

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    Doo eet. Especially if you have a DSi.
     
  11. Nathan Drake

    Member Nathan Drake Obligations fulfilled, now I depart.

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    lolwut? DS game cards have a limit of 512MB. DS games can also be fairly small, though I don't think I've seen one less than 16MB. That would still be plenty of room for high-resolution sprites though if space was an issue. It would have to be time constraints, or just not wanting to have to design 600 high-resolution sprites more than anything else.

    Nice review. 99% of the new Pokemon suck total dick in my opinion though. Seriously, almost every single Pokemon up to the fifth gym (where I'm at) is just an animal with a palette swap and made cartoony. I mean, it's like there is no effort put in anymore. I pray this is the last generation with new Pokemon added.
     
  12. ZAFDeltaForce

    Member ZAFDeltaForce Specialist

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    Indeed. I hate how the sprites are so pixelated.

    The DS is definitely more capable than that, Gamefreak [​IMG]
     
  13. manu-m3

    Member manu-m3 GBAtemp Regular

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    Good Review but 28 Hours are a long time for only 131 Pokemon in Pokedex! [​IMG]

    But for great Review this time is really good anyway! [​IMG]
     
  14. soulx
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    Member soulx GBAtemp Legend

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    I meant 4 gigabits. Not 4 gigabytes. That's still more than enough space for the sprites.
     
  15. DJ Hobo

    Member DJ Hobo GBAtemp Regular

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    So do you need the IR chip to battle and trade, or does it simply speed up the process?
     
  16. Demonbart

    Member Demonbart GBATemp's guitar hero

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    You need IR to battle/trade via c-gear.
    It's not necessary when going to the union room.
     
  17. TheTwoR's

    Member TheTwoR's Yay I can finally edit this thingy :D

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    LOL I played for 80 hours in Pokemon HG. I haven't completed the game yet and I have less dex entries.
     
  18. PeregrinFig

    Member PeregrinFig A miserable little pile of secrets

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    As the OP said, these games have great music. I find it a lot better than most Pokemon games' music, and love how every town has a unique theme. These are my favorite songs from the game:
    Warning: Spoilers inside!
     
  19. Wizerzak

    Member Wizerzak Because I'm a potato!

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    Very good review and i agree with nearly all of it. Overall it is a very good game but I believe there are quite a few bad points:

    > The music - as soon as you turn it on, especially the intro, the music is pretty crap, compared to platinum (which I think had the best music).

    > No constant run! [​IMG] You have to hold B for nearly the entire time you're playing (until you get the bike that is)

    > Enemy plot isn't that as good (although, i'm only just past 4th gym)

    > When you open your bag it closes whatever registered item you're using (e.g. Dowsing machine)

    > C-Gear should be a key item or similar as it has too much prominence (especially if you have no friends with you or wi-fi connection makes it useless - my favorite use of touch screen so far is Poketch in D/P/Pl)


    Don't get me wrong, it's an amazing game, best in series so far IMO, I was just highlighting some of the bad points.
     
  20. PeregrinFig

    Member PeregrinFig A miserable little pile of secrets

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    Don't judge this game until you beat it. The music gets really amazing starting at the city with the 5th gym, and the plot gets better too. Ghetsis is the best villain I've ever seen in a Pokemon game, much more cunning and sinister than, say, Cyrus.
     

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