Author Topic: IMPRESSIONS: Pokepark Wii  (Read 3802 times)

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Offline NWR_MattB

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« on: January 26, 2010, 07:00:21 PM »
Is PokéPark Wii another quick Pokémon cash-in?

 It's not every day that a quality Pok√©mon spin-off for a home console comes along. So when Pok√©park Wii: Pikachu's Great Adventure came along, many people were expecting a low-quality cash-in from Nintendo. Surprisingly, Creatures Inc. has managed to take the Pok√©mon license and put it to good use in what is most likely the best home console Pok√©mon spin-off since Pok√©mon Puzzle League.    

Pok√©Park Wii is far from your typical Pok√©mon game. In fact, it plays more like the poorly received Pok√©mon Channel released for the Nintendo GameCube back in 2003. In Pok√©Park Wii, players play as Pikachu as he falls into a mysterious world filled with surprises and Pok√©mon. He discovers a vibrant park filled with challenges waiting to be solved. The game plays similarly to an action-adventure game, but instead of embarking on a quest to save the land, Pikachu helps the Pok√©mon in each of the park's different locales. For example, one of the quests has Pikachu helping the beaver-like Bidoof and its evolved form, Bibarel, build a dam at the base of a waterfall. By playing as Pikachu, players will navigate the park searching for crates with wood inside of them. By breaking the crate and carrying the wood back to Bidoof and Bibarel, they'll be one step closer to having their home built. Of course, a handful of wood certainly isn't enough to build an entire dam, so Pikachu must repeat this process several times before it's finally built. While it may sound a little dull on paper, it's actually pretty enjoyable for the most part, as long as you're willing to understand that it isn't supposed to be difficult.    

The entire game isn't centered around tasks like that, though. In addition to helping Pok√©mon build attractions, Pikachu can also try out some of them. In Bulbasaur's Foot Race, Pikachu must compete in a standard sprinting race with six other Pok√©mon. The race is controlled by shaking the Wii Remote, and while it may appear a little gimmicky, it's actually more fun than you would expect.    

Another attraction that proves to be enjoyable is Gyrados' Marine Slide. As you'd expect, this is basically the same thing as Bulbasaur's Foot Race, but set in the water rather than on the ground. By pressing the 2 button to accelerate, and using the Wii Remote's motion control to steer, Pikachu must race through the attraction as fast as he can, avoiding obstacles and passing through gates along the way.    

   Those two attractions are just two of the many featured in Pok√©Park Wii. Some other notable attractions include Empoleon's Snow Slide, Venusaur's Rope Swinging, Tangrowth's Swing Race, and many others. While some of them share the same basic concept, each has its own unique spin on things, resulting in a very enjoyable experience.    

Besides playing as Pikachu in these races, additional Pok√©mon can be added to your roster by completing special side quests, referred to as Trials of Strength. One of these tests is hide-and-seek in which you must search for a certain Pok√©mon in specific areas. Some of the Pok√©mon hide in obvious spots while others hide behind objects. In the end though, it all proves to be entertaining.    

Battling is what the Pok√©mon franchise is primarily known for, but instead of turn-based battles like on the handhelds, another one of Pok√©Park Wii's Trials of Strength has Pikachu battling his opponents in real time. Within 99 seconds, Pikachu must deplete his opponent's health bar while making sure he doesn't get knocked out. You can choose from short and long-range attacks, as well as type-based moves, which work the same way as they do in the handheld games. For example, that means your thunderbolt won't work on ground-type Pok√©mon.    

While those are the two primary Trials of Strength, there are a couple of others, such as Tag Races, Quizzes, and Jumping Challenges. As with the attractions, all of these play decently for the most part, but become a little dull after awhile.    

In the middle of all these different locales is the hub world, which acts as a base for Pikachu. Here he can socialize with some Pok√©mon that will provide services to him, such as Electabuzz, who will power up Pikachu's thunderbolt attack for him. After adventuring through certain areas and completing certain objectives, more Pok√©mon will start to appear here and provide additional services to you.    

One thing that should probably be mentioned is that Pok√©Park Wii doesn't include every Pok√©mon. In fact, it doesn't even come close to containing half of the 493 available. Out of the approximately 190 Pok√©mon available, 14 of those are legendaries that can be unlocked by mastering certain events. Still, with that being said, the character models that are present are miles better than those of the WiiWare Pok√©mon games.    

Another notable thing about Pok√©Park Wii is the presence of a password system to unlock special items and make certain Pok√©mon appear. Most of the items that appear are rather iconic to Pikachu, such as his balloons and his surfboard, but it was somewhat surprising and enjoyable to see these make an appearance.    

When everything is said and done, PokéPark Wii is the most visually impressive Pokémon title to date, as well as the best-playing spin-off Pokémon game on a home console to date. While it isn't difficult to tell that the game is aimed primarily at younger audiences, people of all ages can enjoy what the game has to offer. While the game hasn't been confirmed to be released overseas yet, due to the nature of the series, it shouldn't be too much of a surprise if the game hits sometimes before the year closes. For now though, Pokémon fanatics will have to sit tight and wait for Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver to hit this March.

Offline MoronSonOfBoron

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Re: IMPRESSIONS: Pokepark Wii
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2010, 07:51:42 PM »
Mystery Dungeon, Pokemon Rumble, and now this? Could a full-fledged 3D Pokemon adventure on console be far behind?

I'll tack that on to my wishlist, next to "hardcore Kirby".
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Offline yoshi1001

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Re: IMPRESSIONS: Pokepark Wii
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2010, 11:08:42 PM »
I was wondering why this didn't come up with the RFN 2010 discussion a few eps ago. My guess is Q2/Q3.
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Offline Shaymin

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Re: IMPRESSIONS: Pokepark Wii
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2010, 11:10:26 PM »
If they tie some important piece of download content for the main games to this game, I'm going to invoke stabby death on something or someone.
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Offline Matthew²

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Re: IMPRESSIONS: Pokepark Wii
« Reply #4 on: January 27, 2010, 08:29:15 AM »
I was wondering why this didn't come up with the RFN 2010 discussion a few eps ago. My guess is Q2/Q3.

I'd say a late Q2 release is very likely as it roughly takes about six months for a Pokemon game to make it overseas.

Offline farny101

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Re: IMPRESSIONS: Pokepark Wii
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2011, 05:46:51 AM »
i am looking forward to this game as stated as you said it sounds like a good game to play  ::)  so how much storage does it take?
not may fault that your console doesn't work and mine does so why am i getting blamed huh? let me get my pikachu to spark your console then :3