Pokémon FireRed review
Still fun to Catch Em All After All These Years
If you're one of the 5 people in the first world who hasn't the faintest clue as to what Pokemon entails, don't worry because its actually pretty simple. See in the world of Pokemon there are creatures known as Pokemon who trainers capture and train to take part in Pokemon battles. The goal of these trainers is to beat each of Kantos gym leaders, so that they gain the right to battle the elite four and hopefully be crowned the new Pokemon champion. There's something resembling a plot involving the evil team rocket and you have a rival who is kind of a dick but those are really just excuses to have more Pokemon battles.
These battles are easy enough to grasp the basics of. Fire beats grass, grass beats water, and water beats fire etc. The various types mean that the particular match ups don't always make the most sense; why bug beats psychic I have no idea, but before long you'll get the hang of it all.
See like I said, simple....
At least at first glance. See the beautiful thing about the Pokemon series is that it's exactly as shallow or as deep if you want it to be. So if you just wanna collect and train a core group of Pokemon that you collect early on you can do that. If you want to capture every single one of Kantos Pokemon to fill its pokedex in search of your ultimate squad you have that option too. And with 151 plus Pokemon you'll have quite the lengthy quest ahead of you. Or if you want to get super deep with it then you can mess around with EV training and breeding to play the game on another level that would enable you to smack the casual Pokefan like myself who puts a Steelix in his party 'cos it looks cool'. (Internet feel free to rip me a new one here. Some of my more pokefanatical friends have already explained to me Steelix sucks and that I'm a terrible person for ever using one)
And that's why Pokemon continues to be popular with fans across all ages. The creative creature designs appeal to kids while the amount of strategy that can go into a match between two highly skilled players means that adults can get a kick out of it too.
FireRed holds a special place in my heart because I had missed out on the game boy era of Pokemon but still watched the tv show religiously from its debut with my sister every morning before school started.
Pokemon Ruby was a fun game but it didn't feature the Pokemon that I was familiar with as I apparently stopped watching sometime between the first Pokemon movie and the second which I wouldn't even know had existed if it wasn't for google. FireRed and LeafGreen represent the series at the peak of its creature design and with features borrowed from Red and Blues little brothers, it is the definitive recommendation for those who still sniffle when they remember Ash releasing his Butterfree into the wild.
Yes the game has its faults. It doesn't always fully explain where to go or how to proceed, which can lead to a lot of stumbling around untill you finally give in and just give the guard the hot tea which it turns out didn't actually need to be cooled down, despite what that prick outside the mansion told you. Trial and error is often needed because there are times when the game simply doesn't tell you what to do.
The games battles and animations also run a bit too slowly for my taste. It's not a big deal but it can be frustrating when your just trying to train Pokemon out in the wild.
But when it works it works beautifully. Finally getting your Magicarp to level 20 so that he evolves into the awe inspiring Gyrados, or realizing that you can breed a ditto with an Evee to acquire all of its evolved forms gives you a feeling of satisfaction that only the greatest RPGs can.
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