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Pokemon Red, Blue, and Yellow

Stats:
System: Game Boy
Release Year: 1997
Publisher: Nintendo
Developer: Creatures, Game Freak
Players: 1
ESRB: N/A

Plot

You are an 11-year old boy living in Pallet Town with your mother. Your rival lives next door to you. You and your rival used to play nicely together when you were little, but lately, he has become mean. He sees you as his rival because you are the same age and height. You also get similar grades in school. When you hear that Professer Oak is learning about Pokemon, you get excited because you are a curious boy. You walk outside of Pallet Town in search of Pokemon and you hear a voice. "Hey! Don't go into the grass!" It was Professor Oak. "There are wild Pokemon living in the grass," he said. "They can be very dangerous. If you have trained Pokemon, you can let them fight against wild ones." Professor Oak took you back to his lab where your rival was waiting. Professor Oak invited him because he is Professor Oak's grandson. Professor Oak spoke, "There are three Pokemon here, so take the one you like! Now that you have a Pokemon, the rest is up to you..."

And so begins the Pokemon adventure. The first games in a pivotal franchise which all but saved Nintendo in Japan. Three of the four Japanese versions of the game reached the U.S. The first to be released were the Red and Blue versions. The only differences between the two were that certain types of Pokemon could only be found in one version. The Yellow version, Special Pikachu Edition, took a different path from the other two. It's storyline and unique features more closely tied to the Pokemon TV show. The fourth version, Green, was only released in Japan.

Overview

This game was the first to twist the RPG genre, combining the monster-collection system with turn-based battles and role-playing elements. An instant success, dozens of titles have followed suit. The game has every element of an RPG, which before were few and far between on Game Boy. In battle, there are four options - Attack, PKMN, Item, and Run. Attack is self-explanitory - you select one of four of your current Pokemon's attacks, and it will carry them out. PKMN takes you to your party screen, where you can check on another Pokemon's status, or switch your current Pokemon with another. Item, well, allows you to use items. And Run is your best hope at getting out of battle. One of the most interesting features, however, was the ability to capture Pokemon. Using Pokeballs, you can attempt to capture a wild Pokemon and keep it as your own. Catches won't always be successful, but if you use a ball after heavily weakening a Pokemon, your chances of catching it are good. Then, you can select from an array of 149 possible Pokemon to tackle the Elite Four, and eventually go after Pokemon #150, Mewtwo. Graphically, the game isn't stunning, but simplicity is called for in a game of this complexity. The music is surprisingly fitting, though sometimes annoying. The game also features a surprising number of sound effects.