Saturday, April 14, 2012

Pokemon Black and White 2 Official Trailer

So, I hate to do two Japanese Trailers in a row, especially when I had another post in mind, but, I mean, this is kind of important.  As you know, I was absolutely flabbergasted by the possibility that Pokemon Black and White 2 (Officially Pokemon Black 2 and Pokemon White 2, as in two separate games) were actually -sequels-, direct ones, to Pokemon Black and White, and eventually came to the position that, well, maybe they're not sequels.  Since the above trailer is in Japanese and thus I cannot glean anything from it, I'm going to rely on Siliconera here who has some good info which paints a pretty clear picture for the games being, yes, direct sequels.  Also breaking my heart.

If you've already watched the above video (you probably should if you haven't, that is the point), then you'll notice that there are two new protagonists; a boy who doesn't understand how hair works, and a girl who suffers similarly, but in a much less visually annoying way.  If they're not upstart trainers learning the ropes under the wing of the new professor researcher (Akuroma), I may just go out and buy a hat just so I can eat it.  Also as you might have suspected, the only other person featured in a clearly-not-a-gym-leader-way is the new rival who also suffers from "What the fuck is hair", a terrible terrible affliction.  I -know- it's a slippery slope to start pointing out a 'formula' for one game series and decrying it as a bad thing, but come on, this is blatant Checkbox-ing if I've ever seen it.  The only thing this is all missing is showing off the "Team" of the game which will probably be the clueless remnants of Team Plasma ala Team Rocket in Gold/Silver.  Because it's not going to be the first thing re-purposed from the older games.

From what I've read, the setting of the sequels seems to be that, two years after the events of Black and White, your protagonist, whomever you pick, starts their pokemon journey in a dumpy little town (called a city but apparently there's not a lot there) that has apparently magic'd into existence in those two years.  Also, half the region has gotten really cold and wintery for some reason.  Which isn't directly taken from Pokemon Platinum or anything, no sirree.  Regardless, that's about all we know, but if I were to make something up, add my own little conjecture, I think it would go something like this:  The professor researcher Akuroma (he will probably get a better name in English) tasks the player to go out and explore the world to register the 300 types of pokemon that are in the Unova region, citing that the sudden climate shifts and some other weirdness has caused more species to relocate to the region.  As it has been for a decade or better, thirteen to fifteen year old kids make better data collectors than adults because hell, the kids are gonna run around the nation anyways right?  Again, purely conjecture here.  Just...going out on a limb.

I know I'm being a bit overly critical here, but it's only because I have some real strong feelings about what's going on with this, as you might be able to tell.  While a 'direct sequel' is not exactly new for Pokemon, as in all reality, Gold and Silver (and Crystal) were direct sequels to Red and Blue, since they carried the same plot over and worked at it.  The Team Rocket angle, what with it being disbanded yet some members not knowing that, meeting up with Ash Red, hell, just going back to the region in Red and Blue after some years, it was definitely a sequel.  To my knowledge, Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald and Diamond/Pearl/Platinum didn't carry this on, but in a sense, that's kind of the point I'm making here.  At least Gold and Silver, being a sequel, was wrapped up in being a Pokemon game as well, in that there was a whole other region, and that it was just enough content to be its own game as well as having the sequel hook.  In some ways, the sequel aspect might have been understated and not explored fully enough.  Whereas Black and White 2 offer the same region (with new locales) and seems built around being a sequel that also happens to be a pokemon game, since it follows the formula checklist.  It's partly semantics that I'm playing at here, but I'm sure you get what I mean.

In most cases, this would be the point where I say, "Despite all that, I know I'm going to buy it because I'm a whore" but you know what?  I'm not sure.  There is a good chance that I won't really care about this enough to pick it up, especially with, as I keep mentioning, the wealth of games 2012 is already offering.  Thinking about it, I have never owned a copy of Pokemon Platinum and, considering it never went down in price, there's a good chance I never will unless it's far, far down the road as a digital title on the 3DSi XL or whatever will end the 3DS line (or start the line after it), provided Nintendo goes with an online venture like that which, as everyone has proven, isn't fool-proof and isn't always easy money.  So unless something really wows me between now and its release, I may just go ahead and skip Black and White 2, hoping that something else will come out that will actually innovate the franchise.  Only time will tell if that's going to happen, though!

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