I want to be the very best ...

I want to be the very best ...

Random – My home seems to have been re-infested with Pocket Monsters. At one of his scout meetings my son learned to play the Pokemon TCG and suddenly both of them were very interested in Pokemon. Which is interesting because it wasn’t that long ago that they wanted nothing to do with Pokemon XY, maybe the newest tropical location has something to do with it or maybe it's just their age, but now they are poke-maniacs which makes me happy.

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Taking a Break

I've been painting and modeling pretty much non-stop for the past year so I decided to take a little break. The above video inspired me to pick up Pokemon Heart Gold for the Nintendo DS. I remember playing the original game during the heyday of the franchise around 1999, and throughly enjoying the experience.

This version has been updated using many of the features presented in the Diamond/Pearl/Platinum versions of the game and therefore looks very similar. The play-style sticks true to form catch and battle grinding through to level up your characters. Just like in previous incarnations of the game there are creatures that can only be obtained in specific versions of the game or wifi events. To truly complete the game you have to put in some serious time and effort as well as pay attention to promotional events. 

The "Bank of Mom" has been reintroduced as well. This feature takes a portion of your income and automatically stores it so you won't lose all your cash when you encounter a difficult match-up. Annoyingly though "mom" spends your money on items that may or may not be useful and calls to inform you that she's sending you packages bought with your money ... thanks mom.

The phone system is something I don't remember from previous versions and it's just as annoying as real life. Random people will call throughout your quest to "chat" sometimes they have items for you, but most of the time it's just mindless chatter.

One of the neat add-ons the Nintendo included with the game is a pedometer that acts as a storage device to "walk" your Pokemon. This allows you level up your monster as well as gain items and catch monsters that only appear on the device. This is a cool device that encourages kids to be a bit more active (or at least shake the crap out of it). Fun peripherals are a mainstay for the franchise and this one adds to the list.

Most people will see this game as a quick cash grab for Nintendo/Gamefreak as it doesn't really move the series forward and doesn't introduce any groundbreaking features. However if you played the original this is a nice throwback that takes better advantage of the touchscreen features on the DS.

Given the sales figures and hype from the newest Japanese version it sounds like the next incarnation will better incorporate the features available for the DSi as well as change the look and feel of the game as a whole.

It only ends when you catch 'em all.