Review by NinjaZidt

"Another Step Into the Pokemon Universe..."

Ah, the good ol' days of Pokemon. Another new generation has come up. And like before, people are all over this game, even though it involves many kids going on a quest to capture...monsters with a ball. Why is it that people are always eager to buy these games? Is it because of the new Pokemon that's out there? Is it because of the new experience that you'll enjoy. Well, read and find out.

Story: 7/10
Hmm... Let's see here... Team Magma is trying to expand the earth with its land masses by, first, using a meteorite and a strange-looking machine. The planned to make the volcano erupt and cover the earth with this molten liquid until it hardens and creates more land. Great. To me, it doesn't really seem like they really thought this out, plus I never did figure out how a meteorite could manage to make an entire volcano erupt. Their second attempt, using Groudon to their advantage, actually makes more sense. Their Pokemon pretty much has the power of the earth, after all. Seeing how this attempt is reasonable, it kept the score from dropping down to a 6. However, it still doesn't sound all that interesting. Eventually, after you rid the world of Groudon by capturing or defeating it, then everything will go back to normal and that's the end of that. It seems like the Pokemon company didn't really try to put that much effort into a story but even more effort into the gameplay. Though the gameplay was fun overall, they still could've considered many other things...such as this story.

Gameplay: 9/10
Of course, this game is fun. With all the new places to explore, the new Pokemon to capture, and all of the new things to do, it'll always be fun. If you do about everything in this game, you should end up at 70+ hours! We should always remember the joy of buying this game because of the new Pokemon, since that just adds to the fun of this game. The new worlds out there make it fun to travel from town to town, awaiting any scenario that might jump out and stop you along the way. And, of course, how could we forget the battle system? Sure it's old and eventually get boring, but you have to consider the fact that it adds to the heat of kicking your opponent's ass, especially your friends'. However, the problem here is: It gets really old after a while. Sure capturing Pokemon is fun but training them is a pain. A nice pastime, I might say, but that doesn't change the fact that the only reason you're training is so you could hit the Battle Tower or things like that. Is that all? Couldn't they throw in some side quest or something like that? Wow... How depressing. Though Emerald was better, I'm still talking about Ruby here. Battle Tower may be fun but it's really not worth training for, and you feel like you want to stop playing this game forever. Well... I hope that the new few generations will have many more things to do.

Strategizing: 9/10
Here's a new section you never saw coming. By "strategizing", I mean "What kind of strategies can you come up with using these attacks and those Pokemon?" Have you guys ever heard of Pokemon Netbattle? It's this great site where you could pick any Pokemon you want, at any you choose, with any attacks you need. This is the best way to test the strategies you could come up with, which is better than attack breeding, trading, training, finding opponents, or looking for TMs. And after all of the time I had on Netbattle, I realized that there are more ways to beat your opponents that just using legendaries. Swampert with his weakness only to grass-types. Sceptile with its quick speed. Beautifly with its, strangely, Battle Tower kicking skills. Alakazam with its elemental punches. And the list goes on and on, However, it lost a point because those are pretty much the only types of Pokemon in this game who has any really skills. If you want a game where you could strategize your head off, then play Fire Red or Leaf Green since there's a larger array of Pokemon who could whip you in battle *Points to Shuckle*.

Graphics: 10/10
Well... Yeah... A major improvement, no doubt. Everything's much cleaner and brighter. Colorful, if you may. The sprite artworks are fresh and crisp, something that'll make you whisper "Wow..." to yourself. And when you see that really, really big Aggron for the first time, you can't help but be impressed. So, really, this is all I could say about the graphics: It is great, clear, impressive, beautiful, and almost perfect. Though some sprite artwork seem to look awkward, this isn't enough to affect the score at all.

Sound: 7/10
Ehh... Yes. There's nothing really impressing about the sound. It's not bad nor good; usually, you just tend to ignore it most of the time. Like I said before, there's nothing really impressive; there's nothing that hooks you and leaves you standing there, listening to the music track. As for the actual sound effects, it lost a point here. Some of the attacks sound fine, but the Pokemon cries are awful! Why does the company always make Pikachu go "BZZYTAKA"? It's really strange and unnatural, but I bet they can't really do anything about it.

Replayability: 9/10
You won't believe how many times I started a new game just so I could do this entire quest over again. Sure I regretted it sometimes since I lost about everything I gathered up and was forced to go through those damned dungeons again, but it was still fun. You get a chance to try out all three starters and enjoy battling your way through trainers and Team Magma again. For some reason, it's always fun just to start a new quest again on a Pokemon game. It is because of the Pokemon you could retrain to kick ass? Or is it because of the thrill you get to experience once again as you travel through the Hoenn world? Nonetheless, this is the kind of game you would want to start a new game on at least once.

Rent/ROM or Buy?
Buy, Definitely buy this. For a game that'll always be fun and something that'll last you a few years, you must buy it. Always remember that you're going on a quest to capture all Pokemon, first of all. That'll already last you a few...months! Training to defeat the Elite Four should also increase the tension in battle as you make your way up after training for quite a bit. Leveling up for Battle Tower may be frustrating, but it'll be quiet fun when you have nothing to do and decide to take on the unbelievably strong opponents; I always found joy in that. And why wouldn't you buy it, anyway? Seeing how this is a relatively popular game, I would expect many people to already own it; then you could test your friends' skills by battling them via link cable.

Overall: 8.5/10 or 9/10
This is a great game; a step further into the next generation of Pokemon games, and what a way to begin it. But really, you should ignore everything and enjoy playing this game, traveling along your road, and enjoy seeing every new Pokemon you encounter as you try to capture it. Even as a child, I bet you remember the thrill of playing the Pokemon games. You still will.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 04/12/07

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