Thursday, 10 October 2013

Review No. 58 Pokémon Diamond - DS (3+)

Strong Points:
107 new Pokémon
VS Seeker is in the game
Berries available to be picked
Pokétch is a good feature with upgrades for extra apps
Large non-linear map
Lots of things to do
Lots of legendries
Good storyline
New trading/battling system is good
Global trade
Resort, survival and fight resorts add more to the game
Contests are back!
Secret bases are also back!

Weak Points:
Global trade has quite a few bugs
Rival is rubbish
Too many ubers
Underground isn't too fun without lots of people

In-depth Review:

Release Dates:
Japan: September 28, 2006
North America: April 22, 2007
Australia: June 21, 2007
Europe: July 27, 2007
South Korea: February 14, 2008

D-Pad: move player
A: Select command
B (hold): run
Y: key Item
X: menu

This is the first game in the 4th generation and the first main series game on DS. With this came a lot of new mechanics that were now capable with the new system. Along with that came 107 new Pokémon, a whole new map, new storyline and enemy, trading/ battling system, online capabilities and the problems that come with it.

But let's not talk about them just yet. First of all, the story. This time you policeman patrolling the streets of the Pokémon world with his trusty Arcanine at his side. Only joking, you're still a 10 year old catching and battling Pokémon (but it would be cool, wouldn't it?) The evil team that you are fighting this time is Team Galactic, a group of evildoers that want to steal Pokémon, destroy the world and create a new one. And they will be thwarted by a ten-year-old.

Yet again, more critters were added to the game (107 of them to be exact) and 13 of these were legendries. While this was great, it did create a lot of ubers and almost unobtainable Pokémon. But they did do something that helped to get rid of this problem and that was an easier way to trade between friends as well as trading online and migrating from older games. This meant that you could finally get those Pokémon from Pearl that you so desperately wanted or trade your Charizard from FireRed or possibly get a legendary from Global Trade.

While the migrating and wireless trade systems were great, Global Trade did have its problems. One was that DS WI -FI was (and is) awful and is hard/ impossible to connect to if you have the wrong router. The other thing is that people ask for Pokémon that are impossible to get (level 9 and below Arceus anyone?)

There are some non-communication features though and these are great. One is that you can plant and pick berries in plots around the world which is a nice touch and adds content and life to the world. The other is the Pokétch. The Pokétch is what covers the bottom screen of the DS and contains lots of useful apps such as pedometer or dowsing machine. They are obtained from different people in the game as well as Nintendo Wi-Fi even.

The minigame for this game is the contests which are back from 3rd gen. There are a few differences though such as the fact that you now get to dress up your Pokémon (something imitated, poorly, by the 5th gen musical) and then compete in a dance (but this time you actually get to do something rather than just watch). The final round is the same as the previous gen. Also, rather than Pokéblock you now have Poffins, basically the same thing but with a different name.

There is also an entire underground system underneath Sinnoh where you can dig for fossils and spheres (the underground currency) as well as build a secret base and defend it and your flag from your friends. It sounds great doesn't it and parts of it are, such as the digging for fossils and building a secret base but other things aren't. For one thing, chasing after someone else's flag with only them chasing you is a lot less fun than when thirty-odd are chasing you but unless all thirty of them come round your house I'm afraid this isn't going to happen. This is because you can only connect to the underground with DS wireless and this only stretches about 30 metres.

Overall this is a great game with loads of content and communication mechanics but was let down by the fact that Nintendo DS Wi-Fi and wireless aren't great.

Rating: 94%

Goodbye for now, Harry

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