Nintendo has a knack for creating fantastic remakes that ooze nostalgia, but still hold up among other games. One of my favorite DS games was Pokemon Soul Silver, due to my love for the original Silver Version and from just awesome content overall. Now a new game has crested the horizon.
I got to play the Ruby Version on my GBA in middle school. It was a strange and dark time, when bullies would pick on Pokémon players, yet it was during this time more people picked it up. Friends who I didn’t know played video games were suddenly asking me to evolve their Clamperl. Oddly enough, even though I sunk hundreds of hours into the game, I considered Ruby and Sapphire to be a weak upgrade from Silver.
My main issue with the original games is the scope of the game. The Johto Region is huge, and after beating the Elite Four players, one could visit the Kanto Region to beat up classic Gym Leaders. By comparison the Hoenn Region feel small and the towns are small and condensed.
This is where Alpha Sapphire and Omega Ruby shines. Not only has Mauville City been completely redone, but also many areas feature larger set pieces and sweeping camera angles. Add this with the ability to soar through the sky makes Hoenn feel vast and vibrant.
Aside from the sheer expansion of the world, the new games add all the lovely features from X and Y. Pokémon Amie, Super Training, and the Player Search System are all conveniently under one tab on the touch screen. Players can also use a DexNav, which lets trainers see what Pokémon is shaking the bushes. The more the trainer encounters the same Pokémon, the more information becomes available during a scan. It’s a really cool feature I believe will be abused to gather the ultra rare Shiny Pokémon.
Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire also enhance the way players interact. Using the move Secret Power on specific spots lets the player create a Secret Base. After setting it up with traps, dolls, and more, players can then share their base with others. The coolest way to do this is by creating a QR code which can then be saved on the system’s SD card.
Scouring the internet for Secret Bases is awesome and extremely rewarding for both the finder and the hider.
These games retain the colorful presentation of X and Y. The backgrounds are gorgeous and the special effects are really cool. New Mega Evolutions have also been added, giving new forms to old favorites, including the starters Sceptile and Marshtomp.
So far, I’ve had a blast reliving this memory. I can’t wait to finish the main game to see what lies beyond. Pokémon fans will want to pick this up as soon as possible, but I’d also recommend it to anyone with a 3DS and a love for RPGs.
Raise your fists high, Pokémon has never been better.
Looking for some Friend Codes? Here’s mine: 5472-7523-9877 – Alex. Be sure to contact me on Twitter with your code. Also, send me tons of QR bases. It’s my favorite feature so far.