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Games : Recommended
Ranking:
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Release Date: November 21st, 2014 Movie Release Year: 2014

Pokémon Alpha Sapphire

Overview -

The Pokemon series is probably one of the most influential and long-standing series within the game industry today. The monster catching and collecting series has been around for quite a few years, and now appeals to the younger, newer audience and the older, longtime fans alike.

As the Pokemon games move into the series' sixth Generation, there is a need to look back at older games of the series, and update them with modern features and make the games (and their exclusive monsters) available to a wider audience. This is the case with 'Pokemon Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire', a remake of the third Generation games 'Pokemon Ruby/Sapphire', for the Game Boy Advance.

OVERALL:
Recommended
Rating Breakdown
VIDEO
AUDIO
Tech Specs & Release Details
Release Date:
November 21st, 2014

Video Review

Ranking:

Since 'Pokemon Alpha Sapphire' takes the 3D engine from 'Pokemon X/Y' for the remakes, this re-imagining of Hoenn looks on the whole, very good. The various routes and Pokemon come to life like never before, giving them a resemblance of vitality and life that was only hinted at in titles before the series made the jump to 3D.

There are, however, some issues. Some of the visual problems that were in 'Pokemon X/Y' are unfortunately still present in 'Alpha Sapphire'. Turning on the 3DS's 3D effects while in battle will result in nasty hits to the title's framerates, and otherwise, many of the portable's unique features go unused. There is also an unusual changing about of art-styles involving Trainers: Essentially, only your rival and a few other characters get full 3D models during battles, while lesser Trainers merely get a 2D still. While it's understandable that Game Freak would not be able to fully render all the Trainers in 3D, having only a few makes for style clash, and the result is a game that feels less visually cohesive.

Audio Review

Ranking:

In terms of sound, there is little to complain about in 'Alpha Sapphire'. Music in the Pokemon series has always been surprisingly good, and of course, the revamped tracks of this title stand the test of time. One of the complaints (or praises, depending on the fan) of the music of the original GBA games was the overabundance of trumpets in various tracks; in 'Alpha Sapphire' the instrumental variety is more evened out, which I feel serves the actual tracks far better than the many trumpets from before.

In the sound effects department, everything appears adequate. Battle sounds have a punch to them, and the Pokemons' cries are still the same chippy noises from yesteryear… except Pikachu saying 'pika', oddly enough. There is no voice acting of any sort to listen to, though, despite many periods of rather wordy exposition throughout. 

Final Thoughts

'Pokemon Alpha Sapphire' is, to put it simply, a Pokemon game. The end goal is to go out, catch 'em all, and become the Champion. These series staples are what help to make Pokemon what it is over the years, and with this being a remake of an older title, it's not surprising to not see any twists on this age-old formula.

That said, that means that if you aren't really a fan of the Pokemon games, or are growing weary of the same old formula again and again, your should probably skip 'Alpha Sapphire'. It's not a bad game by any means, but the game also doesn't offer anything new and exciting besides its visual upgrades, so some may find the game a bit lacking.

For everyone else, though, of course 'Alpha Sapphire' will be worth picking up. This remake offers far more post-game content than 'Pokemon X/Y', and the new look and features are sure to placate Pokemon fans until the next release.