Tag Archives: Pokemon Dream Radar

Pokemon White 2 Blog - Boxes

Blog – One Full Day of Pokemon White 2

To many of you, waking up this morning was no big deal – just another lazy October Sunday; another perfect excuse to kick back, enjoy some football and drain a few beers. Congrats; you’re the “normal” people, at least on this particular Sunday.

For die-hard Pokemon fans such as myself, this Sunday – October 7 – has been marked on the calendar for months. It’s “Pokemon Sunday” – the only Sunday I ever look forward to, regardless of the occasion, and possibly the most anticipated day of 2012 for countless Pokemaniacs. The reason, of course, is the North American launch of the latest installment(s) – Pokemon Black 2 & Pokemon White 2.

Personally, I already had my copy of White 2 paid off at the local GameStop; I even had a copy of Black 2 on pre-order for my girlfriend, Deanna. On any other normal “Pokemon Sunday”, I would have made the trip to the mall – which opens later than usual – at noon, picked up my game, and spent the rest of the afternoon in nirvana. Unfortunately, due to some other obligations on this very afternoon, picking up my pre-ordered versions was impossible. Therefore, I made a mad dash to the local Walmart at midnight last night just to make sure I got my hands on the games at the first possible chance.

(After all, there was no way in hell I was riding in a car for 2 hours without the brand-new Pokemon game to entertain me.)

So, aside from splitting my attention to the necessary obligations throughout the day, I spent this entire Sunday morning, afternoon & evening exploring the all-new areas, checking out the new game mechanics, and diving into the massively expanded “regional Pokedex” featured in the brand-new Pokemon sequels.

I’ll make my general comments quick, with bullet points and a quick comment about each topic:

  • The Unova Region, RediscoveredOne of the most exciting parts of the original Black & White versions was exploring the all-new Unova region for the first time, catching the regional monsters that you’d never encountered before, learning new battle strategies, and forming new teams of Pokemon that both forced you to take a newer approach and also build Pokemon with more depth than in previous installments.This time around, you start the adventure in Aspertia City – a new location based in western Unova, in an area that was inaccessible in the original Black & White versions. The new hero & rival characters fill their roles well, but I was surprisingly intrigued by the references to the plotline in the original games – Black 2 & White 2 are definitely sequels, and play the part very well.

    In particular, Aspertia City is easily the largest “hometown” in any Pokemon title to date. The lookout scene (pictured above) is simply stunning, speaking in relation to Pokemon series standards. The Virbank City Gym (based on the Poison-Type) is one of the coolest I’ve seen so far; it’s based around a grungy rock/metal music venue, with the Gym’s trailers & leader making up the band playing on-stage. They even sing out “P-O-K-E-M-O-N” as they play. Nice touch! Finally, I’m not too far through the plot – I just found HM01 (Cut) and am approaching my third badge – but already I can see how the series’ exploration factor is fully intact. I have only discovered a handful of areas, but I have spotted secret paths or inaccesible spots to revisit once I’ve found the proper HM/TM abilities.

  • The Expanded PokedexIf Black 2 & White 2’s sole enhancements were the expanded regional Pokedex, I would still be impressed enough as a dedicated fan of the series – the idea of having more of the unique critters to collect, train & battle is certainly exciting, but with all the new moves and abilities that have been introduced over the last few generations, you’d be surprised how fresh and interesting the classic Pokemon start to feel.In addition to all 150 of the “fifth-gen” Pokemon that were found in the original Black & White versions, the sequels have doubled the number to 300, and boast species from all five generations right from the start of the game. There are some old favorites – Riolu/Lucario, Growlithe/Arcanine, the Magmar & Electabuzz families and even powerful beasts like Tyranitar, Metagross & Slaking.Basically, the result is that each area of the game seems to feature more variety and more unique creatures to capture, leading to a greater sense of reward for…well, “catching ’em all”. There may be more to worry about from the get-go, but I legitimately feel motivated to complete the entire Pokedex, just as I did with my original Pokemon White version just a few months ago.
  • The Current TeamAs a seasoned Pokemon player, it’s pretty boring to stick to the same team of Pokemon throughout each “New Game”, particularly in a brand-new installment of the franchise. Since I picked up Platinum several years ago, I have held myself to a pretty strict personal requirement: think outside of the box, and try new things at every opportunity. This has ultimately given me a whole new enjoyment of the games and exploring the entire Pokedex, from #000 – #649.

    In White 2, I decided to choose Oshawott as my starter Pokemon. Basically, I chose Snivy in the original White version, and found that I had never been so disappointed with a starter Pokemon before. Tepig seemed like an interesting choice, but Black 2 & White 2 actually feature more of the best Fire-type Pokemon from the entire franchise…thus negating the need to choose a Fire-type starter. Anyway, I nicknamed the little guy (or, in this case, little girl) “Wotter”, a popular choice for the creature’s original name before Black & White were released.

    I quickly picked up every single Pokemon I encountered along the way, just for the sake of filling out that damn Pokedex. As always, the Normal-types barrage you at the beginning of the game (Patrat, Lillipup), but it doesn’t take long for the sequels to mix things up. With the expanded Pokedex, each area is brimming with various types of monsters, so it doesn’t take long to encounter a full team of monsters that cover a wide range of the different elemental types.

    Anyway, my second Pokemon was technically Genesect – I received the “Mystery Gift” voucher for free in my copy of White 2 – but I quickly stored it in the PC, and caught myself a Mareep. I enjoy Electric-types, and Ampharos is a personal favorite from the second generation. It wasn’t long before I found a few more creatures (Sunkern, Sewaddle, Pidove), but the third Pokemon on my “team” was Riolu – who turned out to be quite an elusive bastard, at least in my experience.

    You see, one of the very early areas in Black 2 & White 2 features wild Riolu, which evolves into the very powerful and very badass Lucario. Unfortunately, I spent hours trying to find a Riolu before realizing that it really only appears during the daytime. After grinding experience for what seemed like a big waste of time, I finally caught a Riolu and trained it to the highest level of any current team member. Unfortunately, it still hasn’t evolved into Lucario – I’m waiting to continue training it until the morning, as it only evolves during the day (and only if its “Friendship” rating is full…shenanigans).

    I also plan to train a Growlithe and use a Fire Stone to unleash the Fire-type monster that is Arcanine. Finally, I’ve got an Elekid – I’ll be damned if I don’t end the game with a pretty badass Electivire.

The ‘Lame Little Let-Downs’

First of all, the Pokemon Movie Studio distraction/side-quest is something I was more or less dreading before Black 2 & White 2 came out – and the expectations weren’t far from the results. Out of all the stupid distractions in Pokemon history, making movies isn’t as bad of a concept as the freaking beauty contests from generations past; on the other hand, the introduction to this entire part of the game overstays its welcome and feels like a really big chore, just as you’re moving on from earning your second badge. I don’t totally hate the movie idea – it’s not difficult to figure out, but it doesn’t really make sense. If Castelia City is based on New York City, why not put an emphasis on Broadway-style plays rather than Hollywood-style film productions? Just a thought.

Moving on, this is where my little Pokemon blog might sound dreary…fear not, the sequels are no less entertaining due to their release on the original DS format, but there were more than a dozen instances in my first five or six hours of play that I suddenly wished Black 2 & White 2 were designed for the 3DS. The graphics? The music? Definitely a step up; the tunes are catchy as always, but sound better and seem to be more intricate & complex than the tracks from past games. Additionally, the animations are smoother and feature more frames in general, not to mention the battle scenes have a bit more detail and the environment effects really dazzle compared to past games.

On the other hand, how much better could this entire experience have looked if it were designed for the 3DS? The “what if’s” are merely for speculation, not criticism – I love these games, but even with the passion for Pokemon, I can honestly admit that I would have been at least ten times as impressed with the production values if the sequels were just not featured on the old hardware.

It is likely that these criticisms could be copied and pasted into my final review of Pokemon Black 2 & White 2; whatever the case, these are some of the biggest problems I’ve encountered in almost a dozen hours of gameplay. To be completely honest, I’ve been having nothing but a blast playing the game – my girlfriend feels the same about Black 2, and has even invested herself into the Pokemon Dream Radar app on the Nintendo eShop. In fact, just this evening she captured the “Therian Form” of Tornadus, the legendary Flying-type “genie” Pokemon. I haven’t checked it out yet myself, but I look forward to seeing how it works, and I definitely want to get some of those sweet-looking “Therian” versions of the legendary genie Pokemon.

Shin Megami Tensei IV - 1

The Daily 3DS Trailers Report (10/6/12) – A Gaggle of New 3DS Videos

I’ve been AWOL for the last three or four days, but apparently Nintendo and its various supporters have been busy launching off a gaggle of brand-new 3DS videos, featuring footage from games such as Professor Layton & The Miracle Mask, Pokemon Dream Radar, Shin Megami Tensei IV, and more.

Perhaps the most exciting is the new footage from the recently-announced Crashmo, sequel to the hit eShop title Pushmo. There’s also a tips & tricks video for any New Super Mario Bros. 2 players looking for a little advice with the Coin Rush mode.

Here are the videos, organized alphabetically by title:

Crashmo (eShop) – First footage

Donkey Kong: Original Edition (eShop) – Gameplay

Nano Assault EX (eShop) – Debut Trailer

New Super Mario Bros. 2 – Coin Rush Tips & Tricks Video

Pokemon Dream Radar (eShop) – New Trailer

Professor Layton & The Miracle Mask – New Features Trailer

Shin Megami Tensei IV – Extended TGS Trailer

Looking Ahead - October 2012

Looking Ahead @ October 2012 – Pokemon, Professors & Princesses

Editor’s Note: Just before the start of each month, I will “look ahead” at the upcoming games that are slated for release; then, taking into account the general level of anticipation and the “buzz” within the media, I will select a handful of titles (two to four) that could be worth checking out when launch day finally comes around. Every month, this column will pinpoint the “cream of the crop”, so to speak – just keep your eyes peeled for the games mentioned here!

Let’s not fool ourselves; September wasn’t the hottest month for the 3DS in terms of new releases. There was Fractured Soul; Endgame Studios’ eShop gem was definitely a refreshing challenge, but it was the highlight of a month that was more about sitting back and waiting for Wii U announcements than playing new 3DS games.

October seems to be changing a lot of that; other than the release of the latest Pokemon games, Nintendo will be shipping the first 3DS installment of Professor Layton. There are even some exciting third-party games to look forward to. Without further adieu, let’s take a closer look at some of October’s most interesting upcoming releases:

Pokemon Black 2 & White 2 [NDS] (October 7)

Speaking personally, there isn’t a single game on this page that I am more excited about than these brand-new Pokemon sequels; Pokemon Black 2 & Pokemon White 2. As a die-hard fan of the series (no joke, walking Pokedex over here), any major change to the formula is interesting – and the thought that these versions are the first actual follow-ups is definitely intriguing. I look forward to the twists and turns of the storyline, which appears to be a point of focus this time around.

With all that being said, I am still the most excited about some of the small tweaks and enhanced nuances that ultimately affect the battle system and the core gameplay – how will the sequels transform the series past the original Black & White versions? Early reviews seem to favor some of the replay value-extending features (as if Pokemon really needed them), such as the in-game “achievements” and the expanded regional Pokedex, which now includes some favorites from the previous Pokemon generations. Finally, I will be playing my copy of Black 2 or White 2 (I’m still undecided on which version I’ll be purchasing) on my 3DS – which brings me to the next exciting October release, which you can check out after this “Legendary Pokemon” trailer for the new sequels:

Pokemon Dream Radar [eShop] (October 7)

This eShop app/game comes out simultaneously and is compatible with Pokemon Black 2 & White 2…basically, Dream Radar uses the AR feature of the 3DS to put Pokemon “into the real world”, allowing you to scan your surroundings for the elusive monsters. As reported in the past, you can catch & transfer Pokemon from Dream Radar to your copy of Black 2 or White 2 – another big incentive to play the forthcoming sequels on a Nintendo 3DS, rather than an older DS system. Here’s a trailer:

Code of Princess (October 9)

Atlus’s 2D brawler/RPG caught my eye several months ago, and I have been following it closely leading up to its release. The fast-paced combat is just one selling point; I was really intrigued by the variety of characters and unique fighting styles that have been featured in numerous trailers over the past few weeks. The multiplayer options also sound appealing…co-op brawling action with RPG-like EXP-grinding? Count me in. The 3DS could always use more RPGs, and Atlus looks to have another winner lined up – stay tuned for a review sometime later this month after I get my hands on my own pre-ordered copy. For now, check out one of the latest trailers:

Professor Layton & the Miracle Mask (October 28)

I have never been into the Professor Layton series myself, but not because I dislike the game – I just never really picked up any of the DS installments; I know I’m missing out. Anyway, Miracle Mask is the first 3DS version of the popular Level-5 puzzle series, and it finally makes its appearance near the end of the month. Check out the video:

The Rest:

I would be foolish to skip out on some of the other games that are also headed to the 3DS this October; these may not be the “cream of the crop”, but who knows…we could see some surprises:

  • Adventure Time: Hey Ice King! Why’d You Steal Our Garbage?? (October 23)
  • Skylanders: Giants (October 21)
  • Zero Escape: Virtue’s Last Reward (October 23)
  • LEGO Lord of the Rings (October 30)
  • Spy Hunter (October 30)
Fractured Soul - 2

The Daily 3DS Trailers Report (9/3/12) – Pokemon, Paper Mario & More

The Daily 3DS Trailers Report will be posted on a regular basis, and includes all of the new trailers for Nintendo 3DS games found each day on the Internet.

Today’s 3DS Trailers Report includes almost half a dozen videos, so there is plenty of new stuff to check out this morning.

For the first-party fanatics, there’s a double serving of Pokemon with footage for both of the upcoming 3DS app/games, Pokedex 3D Pro and Pokemon Dream Radar. There is also footage of Paper Mario: Sticker Star, straight from PAX.

Over the weekend, I overlooked a pair of videos that are coincidentally based on eShop side-scrollers. First, Endgame Studios’ Fractured Soul looks pretty slick, and comes out in just over a week (9/13/12) on the eShop. Finally, the team that brought you Pokemon (Game Freak) is getting ready to launch an all-new platformer called Rhythm Hunter: Harmo Knight. Sadly, it hasn’t been confirmed for release outside of the Japanese eShop…at least, not yet.

Here are all of the embedded videos, mostly shared straight from YouTube:

Fractured Soul – Trailer

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ZULs6anF7I]

Paper Mario: Sticker Star – Off-Screen w/PAX 2012 Demo


Pokedex 3D Pro – PAX 2012 Trailer


Pokemon Dream Radar – PAX 2012 Trailer


Rhythm Hunter: Harmo Knight – Demo Footage


Pokemon Black and White 2

Pokemon Black 2 & White 2 Available Oct. 7; 3DS Dream Radar App Coming to eShop

Nintendo confirmed last week that Pokemon Black 2 & White 2 will be coming to North America on October 7 – the first Sunday of the month. Along with the DS sequels will be the launch of the 3DS “companion game”, Pokemon Dream Radar – available to download for free on the Nintendo eShop.

The launch of the highly-anticipated sequels is something I’m naturally very excited about, but the 3DS app sounds pretty enticing as well. Pokemon Dream Radar is basically a 3D shooter game that allows you to catch some exclusive Pokemon using the 3DS’s AR capabilities.

Imagine Face Raiders, only with Pokemon in your room – and not the horribly-deformed floating faces of your friends. After snagging the monsters, you can transfer them to your copy of Black 2 or White 2. Here’s a trailer:


Any thoughts? Are you picking up a copy of Black 2 or White 2? I’m actually having trouble deciding between the two versions – I have a copy of Pokemon White, but I might get Black 2, considering that the Zekrom/Kyruem mash-up appears on the cover of that version, not White 2. What about Dream Radar? Share your comments below!