The Pokemon Trading Card Game is the unknown gem of the widely be
In the late 1990's, Pokemon took the world by storm with its lovable 'animals'. Everyone wanted in on the craze and big business responded with various games, collectible toys, a television series – and yes, even collectible cards. However, even the biggest names in the world produce gems that are simply passed over by the masses. For the Pokemon series, that gem is the Pokemon Trading Card Game.
This gem begins by recognizing that everyone knows Pokemon, but will have little to no idea on how to play the card game. It does this by forcing players to go through a five minute, interactive tutorial that introduces the basic aspects of the trading card game. This tutorial is one of the best ever created as every little detail about the game is clarified. Beyond that, players are given an easy to manage control scheme that has been implemented into the game. The only downfall of the introduction of the game is that it plays to new gamers, forcing experienced gamers to sit through a tutorial they could do with their eyes closed.
At that point, players are introduced to their quest of becoming the sole heir of the Legendary Pokemon Cards. To complete this, you are given a starter deck that is made up of the most common cards in the game. Following that short conversation, your journey begins.
Players navigate through the world to various clubs via an onscreen map. While this map is not visually stunning, it is easy to navigate as each location is clearly labeled. The value of this setup is shown as the linear storyline of defeating all other trading cards players is transformed into you creating your own path to your destiny. Essentially, you are able to battle who you want whenever you want.
This freedom is valuable as the Pokemon type system that classifies Pokemon as either grass, fire, water, fighting, lighting,. psychic or colourless is in full effect. This system makes various Pokemon to be resistant against one type and have an advantage over another. For example, psychic Pokemon have less effect on lighting Pokemon while fighting Pokemon can knock them out easily. Therefore, players are presented with the task of strategically picking which Pokemon they use against each and every opponent.
It is here that the collective aspect of the game is most shown. There are two hundred and forty-nine different cards that players are able to collect over the course of the game. These cards are primarily gathered by winning battles against other Pokemon aficionados. Players are given the ability to use these cards to either upgrade or create another deck. On that note, they are able to make as many decks as their heart desires, but they are only able to carry four at a time. Therefore, players need to be aware of the game situations that they are involved in.
Despite this freedom that is handed to gamers throughout the course of the game, they are not left to survive on their own. From emails sent by the ever-encouraging Professor to the random non-player characters, there is more than enough advice, and free cards to go around.
On the other hand, there is a syndicate trying to derail you on your quest. However, it is not just made up of the combats from the various clubs. It includes your rival, Ronald who is determined to stay one step ahead of you in the now newly discovered universal quest to inherit the Legendary Pokemon Cards.
This game will keep you occupied for several hours as you defeat the Pokemon Trading Card players scattered throughout the world. It will have you playing even longer as you challenge the top players at the Pokemon Dome and as you participate in tournaments at the Challenge Hall. This game does not stop there, instead, it extends further than anyone thought possible as it allows you to go back and battle anyone you desire. Therefore, this game is the ultimate example of replay value as you're guaranteed to be playing until you hate Pokemon – which as history has shown is not impossible, but is highly unlikely.
Graphically, this game presents itself with a few animations and some colourful scenery. Nonetheless, this game could be considered cute at the absolute very most. Fortunately, the graphics may not add much to the game, but at the same time they do not take anything from it.
In a stark contrast to the graphics, the music is beautifully integrated into the game. To illustrate this; imagine being in a battle where a flip of a single coin could mean your untimely demise or the fulfillment of your destiny. Contrast that with a battle where your Pokemon have yet to be attacked and you are rolling on easy street. Essentially, the developers of this game did just that and created the soundtrack to suit those very different situations. By doing that successfully, the soundtrack manages to add a lot to an already good game. Beyond that, the sound effects from dealing cards to the flipping of a coin are spot on.
In short, the Pokemon Trading Card Game is a spin-off of the original Pokemon games. It is a lesser known aspect of the Pokemon series, but it is no less the fun. This game easily provides gamers of all ages with hours upon hours of legitimate Pokemon enjoyment.