Pokemon SoulSilver Review for DS

On: DS
Pokemon SoulSilver screenshot
Pokemon SoulSilver screenshot

Then there's the PokéWalker. Discard any preconceptions you might have that this is some cheap gimmick employed by Nintendo to sell a few more copies of the game; the device is pure genius. Shaped and coloured like the iconic pokéball, the device combines a pedometer with a Tamogotchi, prompting players to take their Pokémon out into the real world, where they'll gain experience through walking. Based on how many steps you take, Watts are accumulated, which can be used to catch wild Pokémon and exchange for new items. These can then be brought back into the main game whenever you decide to give your legs a rest. You can even connect to another PokéWalker to let your Pokémon socialise with a friend's. It's all as clever as it sounds, and far and away the best addition to the game.

The combined effect of seeing your Pokémon trot along behind you in the main game, and being able to take them into the real world via the PokéWalker is inspiring stuff. Never before has a Pokémon game allowed players to assume the role of a Pokémon trainer so realistically. Believe it or not, I feel genuine attachment toward my team of pocket-monsters. Apollo, Starbuck, Dr. Baltar, Boomer, Caprica 6 and The Chief (yes, Battlestar Galactica is my inspiration for names this time around) are all very dear to me. In fact, Starbuck, my prized Crobat, has joined me on several trips to the pub now, and transferring her to the PokéWalker before I leave the house is quickly becoming second nature.

As always, the multiplayer is where the hardcore will get their kicks. Setting a date and training towards the poké-battle to end all others is still one of the most addictive parts of the Pokémon experience. The Elite Four are pussycats in comparison to some of the opponents you're likely to face in the real world, and this is where the game really proves how deep it is. Putting together the perfect team to defeat your rival in real life is where the hours really start piling up, and extends the already hefty lifespan of the game further. Multiplayer has been made all the easier since WiFi banished link cables to the ever growing pile of redundant gaming peripherals. You can now fight friends and trade critters with players around the world, as well as over local WiFi.

Just as with Diamond and Pearl, players can migrate their Pokémon from previous games in the GBA series. Anything from Fire Red, Leaf Green, Ruby, Pearl and Emerald can be brought into the new games, but must first be caught again in the Pal Park. For the avid Pokémon collector, HeartGold and SoulSilver are the most comprehensive games in the series yet, with some 493 monsters to catch and collect. Most of these can be caught in Johto and Kanto, but those that can't (including the Sinnoh starters) can be traded from Diamond and Pearl.

Pokemon SoulSilver screenshot

The kids that grew up with the original Pokémon games are now in their twenties, but the mechanics at the heart of each game are just as appealing to the seasoned RPG veteran as they are to your six year-old cousin. The odd looks and raised eyebrows that come with playing a Pokémon game are wholly undeserved. Of course bringing your Pikachu to the pub doesn't help matters, but the fact remains that Pokémon is far more than a mere kids game. The role-playing mechanics are in-depth, there are hundreds of hours of gameplay on offer and the game boasts some of most innovative use of multiplayer connectivity ever seen in video games.

The only thing preventing the game from reaching the lofty heights of double digits is familiarity; the game is distressingly similar to all those that have come before it. This isn't necessarily a bad thing depending on your perspective, as HeartGold and SoulSilver are the most refined and well polished games yet to grace the series. It does, however, reinforce the fact that GameFreak need to reinvent the wheel for the fifth generation of games. With HeartGold and SoulSlver the Pokémon series has reached a point where it can't get any better. It's like a level 100 Pikachu; it's as good as it can possibly be, but it's probably about time it evolved already.

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User Comments

devante89's Avatar

devante89

ifn you have wi fi and pokemon soul silver this is my pal pad code my name is dj 502766114894
Posted 04:08 on 28 April 2010
Woffls's Avatar

Woffls

That's the trouble with getting it right first time ;P
Posted 21:40 on 21 March 2010
Neon-Soldier32's Avatar

Neon-Soldier32@ Thel-Win-Man

Yaaaaaaaay! I love milking franchises.
Posted 20:52 on 21 March 2010
SexyJams's Avatar

SexyJams

Yeah, I'm really looking forward to a new region,
but I still love the reboots of old regions.
I can;t wait to get my hands on this game.
Posted 20:52 on 21 March 2010
Thel-Win-Man's Avatar

Thel-Win-Man@ Neon-Soldier32

Neon-Soldier, no doubt nintendo will end up making another new region, with 150-200+ new pokemon, mark my words
Posted 20:40 on 21 March 2010
Neon-Soldier32's Avatar

Neon-Soldier32

I am really looking forward to this, but it begs the question; how many more Pokémon games can be made. I mean, apart from being able to go through Kanto, Jhoto and Sinnoh. But apart the PokéWalker, there doesn't seem to be that much new.

But of course I'll buy it. It's my Call of Duty, in the same way that 12 year olds with an Xbox love Call of Duty.

Although, it would be cool if Nintendo did remakes of Red, Blue and Yellow, that is inna different to FireRed, Leaf Green and 'Electric Yellow?'
Posted 17:39 on 20 March 2010
thompo555's Avatar

thompo555@ Woffls

To the Internet to get a list and which look cooler!! :) thanks :)
Posted 22:34 on 19 March 2010
Woffls's Avatar

Woffls

One has different Pokemon to the other.

Yes, that really is it :laugh:
Posted 19:21 on 19 March 2010
thompo555's Avatar

thompo555@ Woffls

Hehe, tis my test so only smart peoples can answer ;) (alcohol has gon to me head lol, only had one :P)

Anyway, what's the difference?
Posted 19:08 on 19 March 2010
Woffls's Avatar

Woffls

Ah I thought you were talking about the other Chris, that confused me!

Buy Gold because everyone else is buying Silver! It's the most popular for some reason.
Posted 19:05 on 19 March 2010
thompo555's Avatar

thompo555

Somebody persuade poor chris to buy and which one!

Don't ask why I went 3rd person!!
Posted 19:03 on 19 March 2010
Woffls's Avatar

Woffls

Top review bruv.

I question now more than ever if sticking to the same formula is invariably a bad thing. Pokémon has hardly changed in 14 years, but is there anything else quite like it of the same outstanding quality? If the answer is no, then surely changing the formula would deprive us of something unique and magikarp KARP KARP

^_^ can't wait to play this, though I wasn't aware you could go back to Kanto in the original Gold/Silver, which I actually never played.

I have Silver pre-ordered from GAME with the super cool statue. I'm gonna' try my bestest to catch Mesprit etc in Pearl so I can import them as soon as I get my 6th badge or whatever it is.

AGGHHH I love you Nintendo.
Posted 18:58 on 19 March 2010
SexyJams's Avatar

SexyJams

Oh God I love Pokemon.
Sooo much :D
Posted 18:47 on 19 March 2010
Thel-Win-Man's Avatar

Thel-Win-Man

i personally cant wait, i never played g/s, so johto will be a new place 4 me :)
Posted 14:18 on 19 March 2010
Wido's Avatar

Wido

Excellent review yet again Jamin! Keep it up :)

I want this game so bad but I have no money for the game. My money has already been spoken for :(
Posted 13:29 on 19 March 2010

Game Stats

Pokemon SoulSilver
9
Out of 10
Pokemon SoulSilver
  • PokéWalker is an inspired addition
  • 493 of the blighters to catch!
  • WiFi features are as innovative as ever
  • The Pokémon formula is becoming worn out
Agree? Disagree? Get Involved!
Release Date: 26/03/2010
Platform: DS
Publisher: Nintendo
Genre: RPG
Rating: PEGI 3+
Site Rank: 1,251 129
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