I’ve been playing Pokémon since I first got a Gameboy in my hands as a child. The repetitive nature of the style of game was fine when I was a child, but it certainly doesn’t hold my attention nowadays. When I heard about the two new games coming out, my sisters and I all started speculating what they would entail. “Pokémon: Let’s Go” is another remake of the original Kanto region Pokémon games. The twist this time around is that this new iteration is actually a remake of “Pokémon Yellow.”
The run through Kanto isn’t a particularly engaging one for me at this point. I’ve chosen my starter, collected the badges, boarded the S.S. Anne, crushed Team Rocket, caught the legendary birds, thrown a master ball at Mewtwo and defeated my immaturely-named rival at the Indigo Plateau. That being said, it was far easier for me to focus on the changes that make this new series worth the price paid.
“Pokémon: Let’s Go” comes in two versions, which is a staple any seasoned player is used to. There’s “Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu!” and “Pokémon: Let’s Go, Eevee!” to choose from. Each version has some pokémon that are only specific to that title, but the main difference comes in the starter pokémon you play with. One version of the game has players partner up with Pikachu and the other one starts players off with Eevee; I’ll let you decide which is which.
The customization this time around has increased; players can choose from a boy or a girl and multiple skin tones. Options to customize the clothing for both the trainer and the starter pokémon come later as you explore the Kanto region. Little accessories for players’ partners go a long way to getting players attached to their starter pokémon.
Catching wild pokémon has been revamped and it’s a point of controversy for fans of the series. The successful “Pokémon Go” phone game has influenced the latest games through their adoption of the capture mechanics from the phone game. No longer will trainers do battle with wild pokémon; instead, players have to aim their pokéballs and throw them at the cursor. Fans of “Pokémon Go” are used to this kind of capture mechanic, but old-time fans aren’t enthused by this change.
There’s a lot to this game that goes a ways to making it far too easy to beat. Players have their hands held throughout the entire journey this time around, and they can even have a friend play the game with them for two-on-one battles. Far be it from me to be against cooperative play, but this game was never about the challenge to begin with; making the game even easier lessens my desire to play it at all.
Whereas Pokémon appealed to all of its fans up until this point, the “Pokémon: Let’s Go” series seems to be catered specifically towards children and fans of the phone game — I’m neither of those. I can only take solace in knowing a new title in the main series is coming in 2019. Hopefully, it’s a more enjoyable experience than my latest trip to Kanto.
I give this video game 2 out of 5 stars.
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