Review by heffnerd2Point0
"A Mediocre Pokemon "Rapid Spin"-Off"
I had seen commercials for Pokemon Ranger, and I had gone on to pokemon.com and had seen it, and it looked like fun. So I got the game, and for the first couple of days, it was fun. But once I started doing the same thing, over and over and over again, it was not fun anymore.
Pokemon has never had a story line as in depth as any Final Fantasy game, but the story here is pretty lame. You start out as some Pokemon Ranger who is on their first day. You are sent to Fall City, and there, you meet Spenser, the head of Ringtown Rangers. Then you have to go out and battle a Minun (if you're a boy, Plusle if you're a girl), your future partner, while Spenser battles a Houndoom. Some other stuff happens, and your brought to Ringtown. There, you make partners with the Pokemon that you battled before.
As the story progresses, you encounter the Go-Rock Squad, the Team Rocket of this game. Later, you find the Go-Rock Quads, four admins in the Go-Rock Squad, and Gordor, the leader, who is trying to create the ultamite capture styler, or something like that.
The idea behind this game, I find, is brilliant. In the field, unlike in usual Pokemon games, you can actually see the Pokemon. Once you run up to it, a battle starts. Now, unlike normal battling, you must capture the Pokemon by drawing a circle around it with the stylus, called the Capture Styler. But it is not that easy. Most Pokemon require numerous circles in order to capture. The Pokemon can run around, as well, and if it touches your circle, the line breaks and you must start all over again. The Pokemon can also use attacks. If these touch your line, then your styler loses HP. If all of your HP is lost, then you lose, and you are sent back to your last save point.
Now, the Pokemon you capture serve two main purposes:
1) You can use the Pokemon to give your styler a certain ability for a specific amount of timw, depending on its type.
2) The Pokemon can use a field move to clear an obstacle. Now, if the Pokemon is the electric type, then it can heal your styler to a certain amount.
Once you have used the Pokemon, though, it's gone. That's it. This adds a somewhat puzzle-like aspect to the game.
There are a couple of flaws with this gameplay, though:
1) Your hand will get tired quickly. After drawing circles for an hour, anyone's hand will get tired.
2) The game destroys the touch screen. All those circles while you're pressing your hand down will give the touch screen a beating.
3) The game is tedious. After a while, doing the same thing gets pretty boring. There is not enough ways to mix it up to keep this game exciting for long. And imaging, trying to catch all 200-some-odd amount of Pokemon. Ugh...
Most Pokemon games have pathetic graphics. Surprisingly, though, the graphics for this game are pretty fair. Because of the touch screen, you can move around at more than just 90 degree angles. The colors in this game are somewhat decent. The graphics have some depth, too.
In terms of music, this game is mediocre for Pokemon. Usually, the music for the Pokemon games is a lot deeper, but here, it is just some notes thrown together like most Nintendo DS or Game Boy Advanced games. The sound effects are just okay, too. They're not annoying like in some other games, but they aren't great.
Final Score: 5/10
Pokemon Ranger is pretty run-of-the-mill game that Nintendo published probably to earn a quick buck. Unless you are a giant fan of Pokemon, I highly recommend using your forty bucks to buy yourself a more worthwhile Nintendo game, Animal Crossing. If you are specifically looking for a Pokemon game, though, I assure you, this is not the one you should buy.
Reviewer's Rating: 2.5 - Playable
Originally Posted: 11/26/07
Game Release: Pokemon Ranger (US, 10/30/06)
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