The Pokémon games have always been quite predictable as after all, most titles have always followed the same pattern: two games with opposite names are released first and a “neutral/special edition” comes out a while later. In an interesting turn of events though, Nintendo has done something completely different by officially confirming Pokémon Black & White 2, the first numbered sequel in the franchise. These titles were announced on the February 26, 2012 episode of a popular Japanese television show called Pokémon Smash. When Nintendo stated that they had an announcement to make everyone was expecting a new title in the popular franchise of Pocket Monsters, but no one was predicting this. Since the announcement a lot has been said about the upcoming titles, and even though many fans of the series despise the idea of a “direct” sequel, this is so bizarre that it might actually work. Nevertheless, the craziest detail about Black & White 2 is that they are going to be released for the Nintendo DS.
Taking into account that Nintendo has been trying to encourage users to buy a 3DS, it seems quite weird that they will publish these games for an antiquated system like the DS. On the other hand, considering that Nintendo has sold around 151 million units of the latter it does make sense to release a couple of titles that are expected to sell well before the DS is completely replaced by the 3DS. But what I really like about this announcement is that for the first time in the franchise’s history the Japanese-based company didn’t make what everyone was expecting. In this case, that means announcing Pokémon Grey. After all, most games in the series have always followed a predictable pattern: Red, Blue and Yellow; Gold, Silver and Crystal; Ruby, Sapphire and Emerald; and finally Diamond, Pearl and Emerald. Instead, Nintendo decided to do quite the opposite, leaving a lot of questions unanswered. What we do know is that the game is coming out in Japan in June 2012, with a third quarter released in North America and Europe. Now, considering that we don’t have a lot of details about the titles, what could they possibly be? What should we expect from them? Will their names be the one and only innovation? Here are some of predictions about Pokémon Black & White 2.
Graphics Will Be Improved Significantly.
Being able to see and clearly identify a Pokémon following you around has been one of the best additions to the series, even when it’s a really minor one. I expect those details to make a return, but in addition, I also predict that Nintendo will do something different in terms of graphics. I know that this can be quite hard, especially in a system like the DS where everything seems to have been already done, but I’m pretty sure that graphics will be further improved. Some absorbing cutscenes will be more than welcome.
There Will Be New Cities and Regions.
One of the most appealing aspects of the original Pokémon Gold & Silver was that they were the first to feature a whole new zone. This could be accessed once the player had beaten the first eight Gym Leaders, the Elite Four and the Champion. When this part was completed, a new zone opened and the player could visit Kanto to find new creatures, battle against eight more Gym leaders and much more. I guess fans wouldn’t mind revisiting older regions once again.
More Pokémon Will Be Included.
Although two new legendary monsters have already been confirmed (Black Kyurem and White Kyurem,) I’m expecting some more. I doubt that 100 new Pokémon will be created just for this game, but at least I hope that more legendary ones are featured. If we think about it, capturing the rarest creatures of each title has always been one of the most appealing elements of the franchise.
They Will Have Pokéwalker Support.
From what I’ve heard, most people are expecting some kind of innovative way of connecting Black & White 2 to the 3DS, and even though that is promising I would prefer Pokéwalker support. To be completely honest, one of the main reasons why I bought Pokémon HeartGold with was for the inclusion of this attractive peripheral. Basically, this pedometer device (which came bundled with every copy of HeartGold & SoulSilver) allowed trainers to level up their monsters, capture new ones, get more items and so on and so forth. I used the Pokéwalker for about a year or so and to me, it was one of the most engaging and captivating ideas featured in a game. It was particularly well-suited for Pokémon and I’m pretty sure a lot of other people used it a lot too. Nintendo, please bring it back.
They Will Feature an Improved Online Mode.
Connecting with your friends to battle and trade has always been extremely tedious and the Nintendo DS’ woefully inadequate use of Friend Codes didn’t alleviate these issues at all. The only DS title that I remember featuring a painless online experience was Mario Kart DS as you connected, waited for other players and raced, as simple as that. I just hope that Game Freaks is able to figure this out or I’ll end up capturing a lot of Pokémon and I won’t be able to show Australians who’s the boss.
Of course there are many things that players want to see in these games, but what would you like to see? Secret bases? A region in particular? A new Pokéwalker? A better breeding system? Please go ahead, share your ideas in the comments.