With Pokémon Black Version 2 and White Version 2 being released today, I have turned my attention to the next generation. The next instalments of the main Pokémon games will almost certainly be released on 3DS this time – and this opens up a lot of new, exciting possibilities for the popular franchise.
Here are my top 5 ideas for what should be introduced into the 3DS versions of the game:
1. Free movement!
The first thing that HAS to be done is to remove the four directions of movement – on 3DS, with the Circle Pad, this should be removed. We should be allowed to move diagonally, after all these years! This would really add to the sense of immersion, as your character would feel more lifelike. If this is not put into the 3DS versions of the game, then I will be shocked, and disappointed. Imagine how fun running and surfing could be – it would make the game feel new again. And finally, if this was introduced, I would expect the game to FINALLY go completely 3D – no sprites. The 3D effect would go well with this.
These features of the 3DS are surely made for Pokémon. There are so many possibilities for this – if you look at the Black and White generation of Pokémon, the C-Gear basically acts as StreetPass for the DS – you can see who is playing around you, what they are saying, what they are doing, how well they are doing – you can even send messages to them. This would be an even smoother experience on the 3DS, as you would be able to pass them in the street and see all of this data when you next open your console.
For HeartGold/SoulSilver, there was a PokéWalker bundled with the game. As you walked, this allowed you to get items and Pokémon if you walked a far enough distance, before sending them to your DS – you could also connect to other people’s PokéWalkers and download their team, which you could battle in Viridian City. This kind of system is built into the 3DS – you get Play Coins for walking, which could be used for the same bonuses the PokéWalker supplied. With the 3DS, all of this functionality would be combined into one compact machine.
SpotPass, of course, would make downloading special event Pokémon easy – you could leave the 3DS in sleep mode, and when you come back to it, you have an awesome Pokémon to use! With something as simple as this, though, much more could be sent to your game online – items, new areas, competition data… there are loads of things that could be easily sent to you.
3. Enhanced, thrilling battle sequences
With 3D, the battles in Pokémon could be revitalised – I’m not saying the whole system should be changed, as that could easily ruin the game. But with the introduction of 3D, the next Pokémon games need to develop the moving camera and Pokémon of Black and White so that battles become visually appealing again. Sweeping shots, panoramic views, Pokémon becoming more integrated into the move they use – as long as the combat DOES NOT become real time. Many fans plead for it, but it would take out the essence of the game – the incredibly deep, balanced and most importantly fun gameplay.
4. An extended single-player game
Yes, I know the games can last you hundreds of hours each as it is. But one of the main drawbacks of the first Black and White was that there was little replay value after the story compared to massive games such as HeartGold and SoulSilver. But I am saying: we need bigger. Shake up the system – 20 Gyms, but closer together? A second, unknown region to surprise you after you have explored every corner of the first region? Perhaps a cameo from an older region when you complete the Pokédex (so that it’s actually worth doing…)? Something like this would really add to the game and set it apart.
Personally, my favourite idea is this: A reunion of all the enemies you’ve faced. That would mean Team Rocket, Magma (my personal favourite), Aqua, Galactic, and Plasma. Imagine a story where you have to try and take down the combined organizations, culminating in a final battle with Giovanni, Maxie, Archie, Cyrus, and N/Ghetsis! THAT would be a story.
5. Improved online functionality
With the 3DS, Pokémon has no excuse to not completely revamp the way its online system works. With Friends Lists and Letterbox, Pokémon has everything it needs to make adding friends to games and messaging them easy – the 3DS could work as an upgraded Pal Pad. A version of the C-Gear could display your Friends List, as well as SpotPass updates from LetterBox – so that you know when to go to the Home screen and check up on what your Pokémon-playing friends are doing.
The free 3DS application Pokédex 3D also needs to be mentioned here – when this is inevitably updated for the next main Pokémon games, it needs to be able to open without leaving your main Pokémon game – this would really improve its usefulness as a way to check Pokémon, their strengths, their moves, etc.
Finally, I would like to go back to the DS. The DS Pokémon games support voice chat – they were one of few DS games that did – and this should be supported more on the 3DS. Being able to talk to the people you are playing with is important – playing local multiplayer on Pokémon with your friends is always great fun. The Xtransceiver from Black and White was a good idea in concept, but in reality it suffered from lag and rarely worked – even if it did, it was often a low quality, dimly lit image in the small space that is half a DS screen. But we have seen how well it can work on the 3DS – Star Fox 64 3D used the camera to show your enemies’ faces and it worked well – so hopefully Game Freak and The Pokémon Company can find a way to make it a worthwhile item in the game.
So, there are five of my ideas. I’m sure there is countless other things that you want improved, updated or inserted, so leave a comment below to tell me your idea(s)!