Win a Winner!
Writers & Photographers
Berlitz Summer Camp
by Allen Rausch
Pokémon Black & Pokémon White, by Nintendo for DS, rated E, $34.99
If your kid is a Pokémon fan, you already know it. They’ve got cards and action figures and they watch the cartoon and they’ve already got several videogame versions. Why then, would they want yet another version of their favorite franchise? The reason is that Pokémon Black and White essentially reinvents and reboots the series. Gone are classic Pokémon like Pikachu and Bulbasaur in favor of 150 brand new Pokémon to discover and capture in a new region of Pokeworld. It’s the breath of fresh air the series has badly needed for a while. The games also clear up much of the annoying “grinding” needed to field an effective Pokémon team and add some nice twists to classic Pokémon battling through multi-Pokémon events.
The real attraction of these new Pokémon games, though, is how absurdly wired up they are. The game boasts a new “C-gear” system that allows Pokémon trainers to hook up their systems through IR communication, across the Internet, or even detect other Pokémon players who are playing in the same physical location through a sort of “Pokémon Radar.” This, naturally, brings up the need for parents to be vigilant in their kids’ use of the system. All of the usual warnings about kids and the Internet should apply to this game as well – no personal information given out, be aware when and where your kids are using the game, that sort of thing. That being said, the system makes it much easier for Pokémon trainers to find people to play with and trade Pokémon back and forth (some Pokémon can only be found in the Black or White versions, making trading a necessity if you want to “catch ‘em all.”) In short, if you’re a fan of the franchise, these are a must-buy, and if you’re not, these are a great place to start.
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