Review by TheRedneck14
"The Best Pokemon Game!"
In 1998, Pokemon Red and Blue along with the Anime series came to the United States, and the first games became some of the best selling video games of all time. So, we all knew that Game Freak and Nintendo would release a new game soon, but I don't think any of us expected Pokemon Gold to be as good as it was. But it was good, and if you look around on here people [including myself] consider this to be the best Pokemon game.
The story isn't really that different. You are now in a region called Kanto, and you play as a kid in New Bark Town who gets a Pokemon, and is sent on a quest by Professor Oak and Professor Elm to find all 251 Pokemon in the Pokedex [there are 100 new Pokemon], and to beat all 8 of the Gym Leaders so he can try to beat the Elite Four and become the Pokemon Champion.
Along the way, you have to fight Team Rocket, and in this game they try to take over a Radio Station, and they attempt to make all of the Magikarp in evolve early with Radio Waves so they can be used as a weapon.
It is better than what was in Red and Blue, but Pokemon doesn't really need a deep story anyway. You are just collecting little monsters anyway.
Most of the game still plays like Red and Blue, but almost everything was improved.
Like in all of the Pokemon games, there is an overworld you have to explore so that you can go to all of the different towns, and search all of the different areas to find new Pokemon to catch. You also have to battle the Pokemon trainers you encounter, and the Wild Pokemon that you find when you are in areas with tall grass, or if you are in a cave or the water.
Training still works the same way, you can hold 6 Pokemon at one time, and when you catch Wild Pokemon after weakening them during a battle they will go into a PC to be stored until you swap out another Pokemon for it. Battling also still has the same turn based format it had in the first game. The Pokemon can still learn four moves that they can use in battle to damage the opponent or lower their stats. You also need to learn how to use Type advantages, like how a Fire Pokemon like Cyndaquil has the advantage over a Grass type like Chikorita, or how the Water type Totodile has the advantage over Cyndaquil. And you need to learn how to teach the right moves to your Pokemon, and you need to make sure that your Pokemon's moves have enough PP [power points] to keep attacking for a while in a long battle, or that you have accurate attacks that can still do a lot of damage, and you have to use the right types of moves for the type of Pokemon to be more effective.
But the new additions make the game work even better than it did before. The main improvements are things like making the bag that you carry items in bigger, and there are categories so the items are more organized, there is now a time system where the environments look different during the day and the night, there are also different Pokemon that can be caught during different times. There are also new Pokemon types [Steel and Dark], along with Pokemon Breeding, allowing Pokemon to hold items, a bar that shows how much experience your Pokemon has during a battle, Berries, new specialized Pokemon items, the Pokegear [a radio, clock, map, and a phone], and some of the best Legendary Pokemon in the entire series, which are some great new features that were implemented in the games that came out after Gold.
But one of the biggest things in my opinion was how you are allowed to go back to Kanto [from Red and Blue] and defeat the other 8 Gym Leaders in that region. For the Game Boy Color, this was a huge game with features that vastly improved upon the previous game.
The AI is not very good, the Wild Pokemon are idiots, and besides the Gym Leaders and the Elite Four the Trainers you encounter are wimps compared to what a human player is capable of doing. But catching all 251 Pokemon, including the ones that can only be caught in some special events [Celebi and Mew] will take a lot of work.
Luckily the game is very addictive, so you might not notice how long it takes to do everything you can do in this game.
Navigating the overworld and battles are still easy to control, and navigating the menu has been improved and it is more organized. But some things still take too long to do, like having to save when you change a Pokemon Box in the PC.
Because the Game Boy Color has color now, while the old Game Boy didn't, the graphics look much better than they did in the previous games. The areas are now vibrantly colored, and the Pokemon/Characters are not black and white anymore like they were in the first games. That is all I can really think of that needs to be said, the overworld is well designed, the graphics are colorful, and the Pokemon look good.
Pokemon Gold features my favorite music from the entire series.
The overworld music is alright, but the battle music is very well done, and the music that plays when you battle Elite Four, and when you meet the main character from Red and Blue [toughest battle in the series by the way] is some of the best MDI music I have ever heard. And the sound effects still have the simple but awesome quality they had in the previous game.
Gold immerses you more than the previous games did because there is so much more you can do now. All of the new features make you feel more like a Pokemon Trainer, and the game is better because of it.
To play against someone else, you need a Link Cable and a friend who has a Game Boy and a copy of the game. You can fight with a friend, or you can trade Pokemon with them, which is necessary to complete to Pokedex because there are some Pokemon that aren't in Gold but they are in Silver.
The only thing I don't like is how you need a Link Cable. At least the DS ones have Wi-Fi which makes everything so much easier.
All of the new features, and new Pokemon to catch extend the play time a lot, and playing with a friend is still as fun and addictive as it was when this game came out over 8 years ago.
Great graphics, great music, improved in almost every way from the previous game, addictive, great battle system, new Pokemon are good.
Wimpy AI, takes a long time to get everything, slow menu navigation.
Should you get it:
Pokemon Gold is in my opinion, the best Pokemon game ever made. Get it now, you can probably find a copy for 10 dollars.
Pokemon Gold improved everything from Red and Blue, and it helped make Pokemon one of the best selling game series's if all time. Even the current games have a hard time living up to how good this game was.
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 01/20/09, Updated 03/13/09
Game Release: Pokemon Gold Version (US, 10/14/00)
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