Take a Nostalgic Trip Back to the Johto Region
Written: May 2, 2012
a Very Helpful Review
by the Epinions community
Pros:Same great battle system, gorgeous graphics, remastered music, great story, all new features.
Cons:Not much to do after beating Red, some music repetitive.
The Bottom Line: I would recommend this game to anybody whether your into the series or not because it is a fun game that is easy to grasp, yet an enjoyable experience.
I can remember playing the original Pokemon Silver in 2000 on my old Gameboy Color like it was yesterday, boy was that amazing. Now imagine it remade with today's technology with new graphics, the modern battle system, remastered music, the same light-hearted story, and new features and you'd have Pokemon Soul Silver. It's time to jump into the world of Pokemon Soul Silver and see if it stands up to the original.
The gameplay consists of the traditional Pokemon gameplay where you explore places like lush forests and dark caves in search of new monsters to add to your team, battle other trainers' pokemon, fight gym leaders, try to fill up your Pokedex, and stop the evil organization Team Rocket from using pokemon for evil. When you are battling a pokemon the screen is set up almost exactly like it is in Pokemon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum. For those who are new to Pokemon, when battling you must use your Pokemon's wide variety of moves to attack the enemy's pokemon until its Hp (Hit Points) are down to zero. Besides offensive moves that do damage, there are also moves like sing, thunder wave, and confuse ray that give the enemy's pokemon a status condition which may hurt it or make it unable to attack for a few turns. Also, you can raise your own stats or lower your enemy's stats by using moves like defense curl, leer, or growl. In the wild there are pokemon that you may catch using pokeballs which are purchased at the Pokemart. In order to capture a pokemon successfully you must bring down its health to a low point and if you want put a status condition on it for good measure. Then, just throw a pokeball and if it doesn't catch right away keep trying. Overall the gameplay is very simple and makes it easy for beginners to jump right in and start playing.
When not in a battle and exploring around Johto 3-D sprites are used. Keep in mind that this game is on the Nintendo Ds so even with limited graphic capabilities it still manages to look gorgeous. For instance the people, the environments, and animations in the 3-D hub world are simple yet charming. Also, carried over from the original is the transition of day and night which looks beautiful, especially when it is in the middle of a gorgeous sun set as it becomes closer to night. In the 2-D battle zone simple animated 2-d sprites are used and while not stretching any graphical capabilities still look quite appealing. However, in my opinion the best graphics in the game come from the opening and the cutscene you see when you are about to battle Lugia. Soul Silver's simplistic and colorful graphics really enhance the Pokemon experience.
Soul Silver's soundtrack consists of remastered tracks from the original. I enjoy the game's music, but there's nothing that I would listen to on my I pod. Some tracks however get repetitive from hearing too much like the battle theme or are just plain annoying like the beeping sound that occurs when your pokemon's health is in the red. The sound is definantly not bad and I like a lot of it, but it's nothing spectacular.
Your Journey starts one day when you, a kid living in New Bark Town with your mom, goes to Professor Elm's Pokemon laboratory to receive your first Pokemon. You may choose from Chikorita(Grass), Totodile(Water), or Cyndaquil (Fire). Once you choose the Professor sends you to deliver a Pokemon egg to Mr. Pokemon. While leaving the lab you meet your neighbor Lyra/Ethan depending on your gender and their Marill. After talking to them you trek through a few routes until you arrive at Mr.Pokemon's house and are greeted by Mr. Pokemon and Professor Oak who gives you a Pokedex to record information about captured Pokemon on. Then you give the egg to Mr. Pokemon so he may research it. Upon stepping foot outside, you are called by Professor Elm and told to hurry back to the lab. While running back to the lab, you encounter a red haired boy who you battle. When you arrive at the lab you are told that someone stole one of the Pokemon in the lab and find out the red haired boy you saw was the culprit. After informing the police, Professor Elm tells you that you should try fighting all 8 Gym Leaders and collect badges so you can become a great trainer. You then walk out the door and begin your journey to collect pokemon, defeat Team Rocket, win all 8 Gym badges, and become the Champion. While the story remains largely unchanged, there is still more to it than there used to be like how the Kimono girls appear randomly throughout the game. The story itself is quite simple and easy to follow ,yet not boring at all because of all the epic events that take place.
While over all almost exactly like the original, it still has its own new unique features. The PokeWalker allows for trainers to put their pokemon on a pedometer so they can gain experience on the go and play games to earn items, pokemon, and new areas. Also new to the game is the pokeatholon where pokemon partake in contests of physical strength, endurance, and speed as they race along the track. I don't really like the pokeatholon, but if your bored it could be something nice to play for a change of pace. There is also a Safari Zone added where you may pay to capture rare pokemon in the wild without using your pokemon to bring down their health. My favorite new feature is definantly the ability to have your pokemon walk around to you. For me it adds to the sense of adventure and you feel like you have your little pokepal right by your side. It's also cute to see them interact with the environmet and sometimes even pick up items. Soul Silver's new features are impressive, but it still does noy stray too far away from the original.
Pokemon Soul Silver is an amazing game and a great trip down nostalgia road for some and a great introduction to the Pokemon series for others. The traditional fun gameplay, nice graphics, remastered soundtrack, simple, light plot, and new features make Pokemon Soul Silver overall a great experience for Pokemon fans young and old who want to relive or taste for the first time the legend that was called Pokemon Silver.
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