Pokemon White & Dragon Age 2: First Impressions.


These games both came out really close together. I was in Gamestop (yes Gamestop haters. I don’t see them ruining the video game industry, and I bought the games new anyway.) on Sunday picking up my copy of Pokemon White, and then back again on Monday for the midnight release of Dragon Age 2. At First I thought that I was going to have to choose between the two, but it seems that my multi-tasking skills have prevailed. I have been able to keep playing both, DA2 while at home and Pokemon while i’m out and a bout. It helps that there is almost nothing to do at work, and when a customer needs help i can just flip it close and the game goes into standby. Playing both and keeping track of what’s going on did worry me at first, but it occurs to me that it’s a lot like reading a book and listening to an audio book, as long as i don’t space time out to much in between each, I still know what’s going on. Now, onto the actual games.

First Pokemon, because that’s the one that I got first. First thing that I really like about this game is that the pokemon center and pokemart are in the same building, it’s one stop now which is really nice. But this does bring me to the bit where after every timeĀ  you get your pokemon healed at the center, the nurse says “hope to see you again.” Essentially, she is saying “please go out and fight pokemon, and they get hurt so you can come back and get them healed.” It’s like a Hospital saying the same thing, which is almost okay, because they’re essentially a business and they want you going to that hospital instead of another one, but when an emergency occurs you’re not going to tell the driver of an ambulance not go to the nearest hospital becuase they overcharge, or the doctors are mean…unless you’re a Scientologist (religious intrigue…?). Same is the case with the centers, you’re not going to go to a different one, you’re going to go to the closest. They look identical and their service is free. Looking at the big picture this may just be left over Japanese manners where they “Thank you come again” is all rolled up in one expression, (Japanese speakers please help me out with this) and in addition with doing the direct translation, they didn’t notice or didn’t bother to change it. Or, in some fun twist to this ramble, they possibly did notice it but it was ingrained with the universe so they decided to keep it that way for nostalgia’s sake “Lalli-Ho” (if you get that reference, it means i did it right and koodo’s)

As for the rest of it, what do you want? It’s a pokemon game. If you like the others, chances are you’ll like this one. Other differences i’ve noticed is that only one of the starters adopts a new type (fire again), you can’t get a flying pokemon until route 3, and the camera moves during battle. now excuse me if that was something they incorporated in other games and i forgot, or it was HG/SS, but i didn’t play those games. There is quite a bit more action going on in the battle, and although it is still disappointing that the pokemon don’t actually say their name when sent out, the movement during combat is entertaining. and not just the camera, the pokemon have a set of movement, including closing their eyes when asleep.

So, right away, pokemon is a good game, and i don’t really expect my opinion of it to change while i continue to play it.

Now, for those just reading this for Dragon Age 2 stuff, stop scrolling here. Fist thing to note, something i just now (yea just now) is that if you look at the cover art, which is the man character and a dragon spreading it’s wings in the background, if you ignore the top half of the dragon, and only look at the bottom of it’s wings, it clearly forms into silhouettes of people. Right then, the actual game. I knew i was going to get this game simply from knowing i liked the first one. I knew i was going to pre-order this game because of how awesome the demo was. Seriously, it’s free, and if you’re even questioning the game, dl it and play it. One of the main annoyances of the first was that it was clearly meant to be played on the PC. Not this one, I mean, yes, it also came out for the PC, but it was obviously made with the fact that most will play it on a console in mind, seeing as the combat is a lot more involved and streamlined. You don’t just tell your character to who to attack and they do it, you have to tell it to do every attack. yes, you still only have access to 6 moves to use at a time, but the way you specialize deems that you will likely only use that many anyway.

As for the dialogue options, they have adopted the radial option that Mass Effect uses for both the conversations and menu screen, but unlike Mass Effect where your decisions are obviously “Good” or “Mean” and effect only your character, how you act in this game still only effects how your party members view you, and it’s not always as obvious as the good or bad, because each of the party members have their own moral compass. It’s also not also a bad thing that they don’t like you, as long as you’re consistent, because they each have certain abilities they gain for being your friend or rival. I just got done with Mass Effect 2, and i really like this radial menu, because you can consider all of your options and the same time. The thing Dragon age adds to it is for a bit of extra help you an image with form in the center of the circle in relation to what sort of response it is. Yes some are more obvious then others, and they’re usually in the same position, but it’s still a nice touch. Another really good addition is that if you have been considering the options for to long and need a refresher of what you’re responding to, the game will help you by putting up what the last line of dialogue was after a short pause.

Once again, first impression and i’m not disappointed. Clearly a great game, and one i will likely play with multiple run-throughs. But before the next time I should really finish the first one, not just to see what happens, but because you can actually upload the save file from the previous game to be what happened. If you haven’t finished, you still can do that, but they fill in the gaps for you if you do. The only really minor complaint i have about this game is that you can only choose your class and gender in the beginning of the game. I liked the option of being another race, but I don’t really miss it. Compared to the rest of the improvements, it’s a small whine along a long list of WOO-HOO!!!s

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