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Does Black/White Defeat my Expectations, or Does It Faint in the Long Run?

  • Mar 13, 2011

When they announced Pokemon Black/White last year I was extremely excited. I couldn't wait to feel the rush of going on another adventure with my new pal. Pokemon was the first game I ever played in my life. With it's simple controls and easy to grasp concept it was an instant hit for my 6 year old mind. Til this day I still play and enjoy Pokemon games. Black and White are no exception. Since there is so many new things in B&W, I'm just going to touch on certain subjects.
Now let's kick this review off.


B&W is no different than any other Pokemon game when it comes to the story. You play as a boy/girl who starts their adventure with your new Pokemon you just acquired from the town professor. You decide to collect eight gym badges from around the region and challenge the Pokemon league. Just as your journey starts t kick off an evil organization shows up and you must stop them, blah blah blah. This has been the general story for most Pokemon games. This is roughly the same for B&W except on big difference. The evil organization (Team Plasma) actually plays a much bigger role in this game. They have one simple plan to free all Pokemon. Team Plasma feels Pokemon are suffering as pets and they simply want too free them. They go from town to town saying speeches in an attempt to convince people to join the cause. The real master plan involves capturing a legendary dragon and using it's power to force people to free their Pokemon.
The story in B&W plays out to be one of the most enjoyable stories in any Pokemon game I've played. With plot twist (one in specific was very surprising) around every corner and Team Plasma actually being good plot material, made me wonder why most of the other Pokemon games didn't have this good of a story.

Team Plasma is easily one of my most loved organizations to ever grace the Pokemon series.

Graphics/Design *includes Pokemon*

The first thing you will notice about the design of this game is how well everything looks now. From the smallest of towns to the tallest of buildings, you can tell a lot more effort went into the towns. They no longer look boring or dull. It just feels like a lot more effort went into the overall towns designs. The little towns have a nice homey feeling too it, the biggest town is bustling with life and everyone is on the move, simply each towns design matches how it should feel.  The colors really bring the game too life now. Pokemon has always caught my attention with it's pretty graphics but B&W really took the cake. Each town has it's own color scheme and it fits the style and attitude perfectly.
No Pokemon game is complete without those little critters called Pokemon. Some of the Pokemon were just such bad designs though. With this being the 5Th generation of Pokemon, the design team was really scrapping the bottom of the bucket for designs. "whats that?...A garbage bag?...Lets add arms to it and call it Trubbish" or "Give that ice cream cone a face and call it a Vanillite". I understand that after 493 previous Pokemon your going to reach the bottom of the bucket eventually, but at least have the decency to design more imaginative Pokemon. Anyway, Not all of the Pokemon were bad. Most were very stylish and caught my attention (Serperior being my favorite design of all). Some even looked like they belonged in other series entirely (Haxorus seems like he belongs in a Godzilla movie in my opinion). I do have to give credit to the design team for not just drawing random squiggles and calling them Pokemon. The overall great overall designs really helped make this game stand out from it's predecessors.

With an overall fantastic design for the Pokemon, some just didn't need to exist.


This is one of my biggest peeves when it comes to gaming. Without a good soundtrack to accompany a game, I simply can't enjoy it. Since I've played a lot of Pokemon games I've gotten use to the repeated audio you hear over an over at times. I guess that since this wasn't untreaded territory, I wasn't bothered as much by it as I usually am. The random battle and trainer music was tolerable and the route songs were decent. but what really got me was the gorgeous story event songs. They were simply amazing. At some event I would turn up my DS volume to max and not even play the game for about 20 minutes and just get lost in the music. It was either really heart pumping and got me ready for an impending fight or was really soothing and it got me into a soft-hearted mood for a heart breaker of a story event. I have to say B&W really pushed the bar when it came to music.

The fantastic music during story events were like sirens singing in my ears.


With a new game comes great changes. B&W hasn't changed much from the general interface though. You still have a badge case and you can shine them til they shine like the sun and you still have a trainer card that holds your basic information. the Pokemon menu still looks the same as it was from previous DS games. the addition of the C-gear to the bottom touch screen is really helpful if your around other people playing B&W or if your around Wi-Fi. It keeps track of people you've passed by and allows you to quick access the Entralink (I haven't messed with the C-gear much in all honesty). 
The one major change I've noticed about B&W's interface is the Battle layout. it seems much more inviting than it was in previous games. instead of simply having four squares (2X2 layout) right in the middle of the touch screen that read Attack, Run, Bag and Pokemon. the new layout throws that out and replaces it with a tad more interesting layout. It now has one button in the upper middle (Attack) and three buttons at the bottom left corner, bottom middle corner and bottom right corner (Bag, Run and Pokemon respectively). this small addition brought more attention to the touch screen and I actually felt like using it at times. The new interface breathed some life into this somewhat dull battle layout.

B&Ws slightly tweaked new interface doesn't add any major flare to the games look.

With a phenomenal soundtrack, overall great design choices and a slightly tweaked interface/layout B&W really brought life back to the Pokemon series for me. I had started to lose hope in Pokemon after Diamond and Pearl. Although with this breath of new life, B&W really showed me what the Pokemon series still had to offer.

That's it for my Pokemon B&W review.
Check out my other reviews if you liked this one.
Thank you.

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April 29, 2011
man....you have some real in-depth reviews here! I am not into Pokemon but you sure can entertain me with your write up. Thanks!
April 29, 2011
Thanks. It feels great too hear that.
March 15, 2011
Team Plasma is definitely one of the better villians this time around.
About the reviewer
Dominic Peterson ()
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I'm Pretty laid back. Most people see sitting at home playing games all day a waste, I see it as a way to connect to people around the world.   Recently I've taken a liking to doing … more
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About this video game


Pokémon Black Version and White Version (ポケットモンスターブラック・ホワイト Poketto Monsutā Burakku & Howaito?, "Pocket Monsters: Black & White") are role-playing games (RPGs) developed by Game Freak and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo DS. These games are the first in the fifth generation of the core Pokémon series of RPGs. Released in Japan on September 18, 2010, Black and White introduce 156 brand new Pokémon to the franchise, two of which debuted in the thirteenth Pokémon film in Japanese theaters on July 10, 2010. Prior to the games' release, they were the fastest DS games to reach one million consumer pre-orders in Japan.

Like previous Pokémon games, Black and White follow the journey of a Pokémon trainer as he/she trains and battles Pokémon to compete in Gyms and defeating the Elite Four, while destroying the evil plans of a criminal organization, in this case, Team Plasma. The games are independent of each other but feature largely the same plot and, while both can be played separately, it is necessary to trade between them in order to complete the games' Pokédexes.
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Publisher: Nintendo, The Pokémon Company
Developer: Game Freak
Console: Nintendo DS
Genre: RPG
Release Date: March 6, 2011 (USA)
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