You Can Never Go Home (to Kanto)

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Those of you who are even slightly close to as obsessed with Pokemon as I am will be aware of the recent re-release of Pokemon Red, Blue, Green and Yellow. Of course, games released over twenty years ago are bound to be dated and this is true of these games. I’ve grown up with Pokemon, I was hooked the moment I saw the very first episode airing in Australia. When I discovered that it was based on games I became obsessed and oh boy did I play.

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Of the re-releases, I chose to pick up Pokemon Yellow and not because of that one smug yellow pokemon you start the game with. I wanted my Charmander and my Bulbasaur, both of which you are eligible to receive (you can get squirtle as well, but you know, ehh). A lot of people who are going back and playing the earlier games have complained about a few different things. There are the trainers who miss the faster movement and easier control systems of the newer games, but I find a completely different struggle in the game.

It’s the type changes that I’m finding hardest to get used to.

Since the release of the original games we’ve seen the addition of three new types. First we got Steel and Dark, finally a way to make those pesky Psychic and Ghost pokemon pay, and most recently received the new Fairy typing. With these changes, we finally started seeing a stronger balance between the types, no single type truly standing out above the rest.

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Going back to the original games I’m seeing all of my hard learned typings completely break down. Magnemite is no longer weak to fire, but that’s been my go-to for generations. Bite was great against ghost pokemon for five generations and now it literally doesn’t even touch them. It used to absolutely hammer psychic pokemon and now it’s nothing more than a nibble. This isn’t even getting into how I need to get used to using fighting moves against clefairy again.

Don’t get me wrong, I do love these games. They may be a little slower than the latest ones, but Team Rocket is always going to have a special place in my heart as the least horrible team in existence. Sure under different leadership they tried to force magikarp to evolve, but at least they haven’t actively tried to destroy all of creation.  I’m just finding it to be a real challenge to unlearn everything I’ve worked so hard to perfect over the last decade or two.

Capture3What I’ve been seeing since Pokemon X and Y came out though is an increased demand, as there is every generation, for a remake of Pokemon Red and Blue (again). Even Fire Red and Leaf Green had a slightly different feel to the originals that they were based off. It leaves me wondering whether remakes will ever out-do the nostalgia of the originals.

Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire talk about alternate realities where maybe mega evolution was never discovered which does explain the differences between Red and Fire Red. This means that to have mega evolutions in a Red/Blue remake Game Freak would be introducing a third dimension that shares the world of X, Y, Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire.

This makes me wonder, short of replaying the original games, can we ever really go back to Kanto?

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