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Jonathan Higgins

Pokémon Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire Demo Impressions Thread

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For those of you who don“t already know, the Pokémon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire Special Demo Version codes have been released into the wild (in North America) starting today. Many who created a Pokémon Trainer Club account and opted to receive promotional emails are getting their codes right now, but there are still plenty of other ways to experience the demo if you've missed out! For more information, check here.

 

I“ve spent a good while with the demo (a little over an hour), and I still have seven scenarios to complete before unlocking every possible reward. The demo has unlimited uses, so everyone who gets a hold of the demo should have ample opportunity to explore without worry. I“ve decided to make a thread dedicated all of our impressions of the demo, as people obtain codes between now and the game“s release. Here comes mine:

 

Before I even begin with the demo content itself, I“d like to say how spectacular the game“s presentation seems. To start: the graphics are greater than or equal to Pokémon X&Y. I could go into greater detail about how I feel regarding subtle improvements like how the water and sand on the beach of Mossdeep City blend together better than similar environments in X&Y, but...I think anyone can tell that the graphics are a bit of a step up just by looking at the various trailers that have been released. Far more noteworthy is the game“s soundtrack. We get a small sampling of it in the demo--from the various battle themes (including Wild Pokémon, Trainer Battle, Team Aqua/Magma), to Mossdeep City (the same town theme as Rustboro City) and the Faraway/Southern Island Music (that was exclusive to Pokémon Emerald as far as I know). I thought the Pokémon X&Y music was a genuine treat for the ears; I have to say they“ve made major improvements over the trumpet-filled Game Boy Advance soundtrack of the original games. If you enjoyed X&Y“s soundtrack, this one won“t disappoint either!

 

That takes care of that. Onto gameplay and Brendan and May--er, Orlando and Anna. I“m fairly certain these won“t be the official new names for Brendan/May and are just names given to you automatically by the demo...Orlando for Omega, Anna for Alpha. You can“t choose your trainer“s gender or name in the demo...and none of the Pokémon you obtain from Steven Stone are nicknameable either, save for the one you can transfer over to the full game. The game“s HUD is way different from X&Y, and some of the menus have changed as well. The top screen is still devoted to the in-game environment, but the bottom screen now has the BuzzNav, which beams constantly changing bits of Pokémon news for you. In addition to that, there“s the easy way to access your items right next to the BuzzNav. Checking your Pokémon“s stats reveals the subtle changes to the menu from X&Y. For example: an additional page to the Pokémon“s stats has been added that show its contest stats (Cool, Beautiful, Tough, Clever, and Cute) on the top screen, while the bottom screen displays the Cool/Tough attributes of the various moves a Pokémon has). The bag is unchanged from X&Y, featuring separate tabs for Items, Medicine, TMs & HMs, Berries and finally Key Items.

 

Battles seem unchanged from X&Y, if not prettier overall. Regarding Pokémon I encountered on the islands during my various missions--I saw Slakoth, Linoone, Nosepass, Loudred, Tropius, Pelliper, Meditite, Chimeco, Absol, Volbeat, Swellow, and Nincada. There were many other Pokémon I encountered during battles like Hariyama and Poochyena as well. Lots of cool Pokémon to find if you“re vigilant about exploring! But beyond the cool new evolution scene, there“s not really much to say about battle.

 

It“s what“s changed outside of battle that“s noteworthy. Rather than the Circle Pad causing Orlando to put on roller-blades and zip around, that button is actually devoted to sneaking up on Pokémon you can actually see from the grass. Funny thing is, if you let go of the Circle Pad while Orlando is in the middle of sneaking, he actually stays perfectly still. The subtle touches to animations like that make me happy!

 

I suppose that“s all I have to say about the Demo if I want to keep things spoiler-free for those waiting to experience the full game. It'll be up to you guys, if you want to tell everyone what happens and what kinds of things you can do. The scenarios themselves are short, and the only rewards are one transferable Pokémon (Mega Glalie, which is nicknameable and whose nature isn't fixed), some Pokéballs, some Heal Balls. and finally some Heart Scales. But it“s a decent thing you can sink some time into, if nothing else! The game guides you through one scenario, then opens up to include many more for up to nine more subsequent playthroughs before all rewards are obtained. Saving is only possible after each mission has been complete, so unfortunately you can“t Soft-Reset to get your Glalie to have whatever nature you“d like.

 

For even more detailed information, check here. I“ll probably wind up with a bunch of codes between now and the game“s release. I may give some away to loyal Game Podunk folk, so keep checking back! Before I go, I do want to announce that I“ll be putting together a weekly Pokémon Feature for Game Podunk starting next week! I plan on alternating between random tips (like this one) and reflections about the series each week, so be sure to check it out!

 

For those who have experienced the demo, what are some of your thoughts?

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SPOILER-FREE IS FOR WIMPS! AND IT'S A REMAKE. SO WHO CARES!

 

I haven't touched the demo, and I doubt I'd get much out of it (plus, Froslass > Glalie). That said, there is a part of me that wants to sell my copy of X/Y and transfer my Pokemanz over to this new game... but I'm also afraid of not touching it much like X/Y. 

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I just played it long enough to get the Pokemon. And assumed that was it. And felt like complaining about how short of a demo that was...

 

I did enjoy it enough to want to get a copy of Omega Ruby (I went with Sapphire the first go-round) when it comes out. But considering how badly I'm wanting that $80 Persona Q edition, I'll probably put off this purchase for now. 

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I think my favorite part was when all the times my character stopping running for no reason whatsoever. There were also a handful of slowdowns for me.

 

Maybe Smash broke my 3DS. I stopped playing once I got the pokemon. I will play more and post a more solid opinion of it at a later date.

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I didn't run into any technical problems, but there were slow downs in battle animations in X & Y so I wouldn't doubt it if there was some here as well. My problem, and ironically it is a problem I had with X & Y as well, it just looks to remain unchanged, is the inconsistent visuals. X & Y used 3D models for the player character, Team Flare members, and your buddies/rivals. It used 2D artwork for Gym Leaders, Elite Four/Champion, and NPC trainers. I hated that. Nothing screams lazy more than inconsistent design. Well it looks like that won't be remedied any time soon.

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I managed to give the demo a whirl and I really appreciate the fact that it's a standalone thing. That being said, I haven't actually finished it yet after having *only* beaten it 7 times.....

 

Also not sure how I'm going to get a US copy here :/

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