Title: Pokémon X /Y
Developer: Game Freak
Genre: Adventure RPG
Platform: Nintendo 3DS
This is the game we’ve all been waiting for. Ever since I first travelled the land of Kanto, my trusty Squirtle at my side, I have longed for a 3D Pokémon game. It has finally been delivered.
First of all, the game looks amazing. I spent the first few hours of my adventure marvelling at the sheer beauty of the character models and environments, and by marvelling I of course mean fangirling. This particular instalment is based on France and it’s very obvious from the architecture and French dialogue scattered around. It even sounds French. Eiffel Tower anyone?
After all the worries and the fear of disappointment we’re presented with something really special. Prior to playing this game I would have said that Ruby/Sapphire was undoubtedly my favourite generation, and while X/Y does lack the features that made Gen 3 my favourite it more than made up for it with new features and those adorable 3D Pokémon – except Mr Mime, he’s just creepy.
We start out strong with a move to a new home (haven’t I heard that one somewhere before?) and four new friends: Shauna, Tierno, Trevor and Calem/Serena. They give you a brand new Pokémon, either Froakie, Chespin or Fennekin, all of whom are adorable but especially Chespin. And then we’re off doing what Pokemon Trainers do, catching Pokémon and battling Gym Leaders.
The storyline sort of wobbles a bit in the middle with Team Flare, who are admittedly one of the least intimidating Teams of the series. Tell me again about your plans to commit felonies because you want to live in a world where only stylish people exist. Sorry Team Flare but your ideas are stupid, you sound stupid and you look stupid. Don’t worry though, in true Pokémon style things escalate rather swiftly towards the end and Team Flare is suddenly the scariest Team ever conceived.
So finally, we come to the new features of X/Y. First and foremost, it is only available on the 3DS so we get 3D features which are cool, but just gimmicky really, but what we also get (most importantly for me) is the ability to use the Wi-Fi features. The DS was very picky about what routers it connected to, you needed specific settings which were awkward and usually meant you went without. But no more. For the first time ever it is possible for anyone to actually complete their Pokédex without the need for real life friends, which for someone who’s friends don’t play Pokémon is kind of a big deal. We also get Pokémon Amie, a cute mini-game where you can interact with your Pokémon by petting them, playing games and feeding them. Doing so gives you bonuses which improve your chances of getting critical hits. There is no feeling quite like spending good, quality time petting the huge ears of your Noivern. Oh, and one last thing, if you make facial expressions into the 3DS camera your Pokémon will sometimes recognise them and make them back. Cuteness overload!
Another mini-game addition is the Super-Training. While I personally haven’t used this, I do have it on good authority that it can be used to train EVs (which I don’t understand) and even boost happiness if you get the Soothing Bag. Finally we have Mega-evolutions. Now how many people looked at Mega-evolutions and thought, ‘Hey, are we straying into Digimon territory now?’ Just me? Well to be honest, I thought it was silly. Why not just make them evolve? Why add more gimmicks? Yes, it is a gimmick, but it’s a useful gimmick. It gives your Pokémon a power boost when it needs it and for the most part it looks cool. Except Mega Mewtwo Y. Just put a tail on his head. Perfect. Is it necessary? No. Does it bring anything to the story? Not particularly. Is fighting a Mega-Gardevoir with your not-Mega-Noivern cool? You bet your ass it is!
And of course, we can’t forget the brand new Fairy type, bane of my existence. Oh fairy types, how I hate thee and thy resistance to every Pokémon type I use. So cute, so evil, so irritating. When I found out there was a Fairy Gym Leader I almost cried. I may be biased in my hatred of this time seen as half of my chosen team is weak to fairies and none of them have any super-effective moves, but I feel it was unnecessary and cruel. My dragons… my poor, poor dragons.
Fully 3D Pokémon and environments
A brand new adventure with brand new Pokémon to collect
Roller-skates and roller-skate tricks
Adorable Pokémon Amie
Team Flare sucks
Roller-skates are difficult to control in small spaces
Fairy Type (ugh)
All in all, if you’re a Pokémon fan and you haven’t played this yet, you want to. If you’ve never even heard of Pokémon you still want to play this game. I have never been so excited to play anything in my entire life and for the first time since Generation 3 I haven’t felt the sad sting of disappointment. So from me, Noivern, Greninja, Pikachu, Pyroar, Tyrantrum and Lucario, have a great day, play some Pokémon and au revoir.