Well, considering that absolutely no other notable major video games worth purchasing came out this week, I'd say this would be a good time to finally take a look at Pokémon X & Y, no? Particularly the stars of the game: the various all-new Pokémon that make up this brand new generation.
Now, in case you're wondering where the typical review is and why we're kind of late to the party here...well, that's largely due to personal technical difficulties getting in the way. Plus, it's honestly kind of a hard game to review...but for those of you still wanting to get the basic pros and cons...
PROS: The new graphics and scenery are really damn nice, there are more improved ways to gain experience, online play is easier and better than ever, the gameplay is still solid and fun, Pokémon-Amie can be kind of awkward but is ultimately awesome, and the new Pokémon (mostly) kick ass.
CONS: Pokémon Hordes are annoying, Wonder Trade is pretty much a huge unbalanced load, precision movement can be annoying, HM-required roadblocks are still a pain (and mandatory at some truly annoying points), the game is indeed pretty damn easy, more than a few new features seem superfluous (especially PR videos), Team Flare is just too damn stupid to take seriously, the characters and story feel like a step down from Black and White, Mega Evolutions just feel like silly, blatant fan service, and there are too few new Pokémon.
But I'm ranting here, and no one ever likes that. Besides, leaked info seems to suggest that there may be more Pokémon to add to the game after all...but until then, we can celebrate the current highlights of this new Pokémon generation (not counting the Mega Evolutions as new Pokémon, because even the Pokédex doesn't). Because despite smaller numbers, the franchise can definitely still hit it out of the park when it comes to lovable (and marketable) new critters indeed. But is that fact, or is it my own screwy tastes talking? Press on for more...
...Yeah, gonna be honest, I originally just planned for this to be a Top Ten. but then I realized that the majority of you would kick the living crap out of me if I didn't include the T-Rex Pokémon with the power to crush anything in his path with a massive set of jaws. So I wisely decided that including him would benefit me in the long run.
Plus, you know, he is a motherf***ing T-Rex. Can't deny that kind of coolness.
Oh, I am not going to make any friends for ranking the frigging cotton candy and meringue Pokémon higher than the T-Rex. But I just can't help it, I love the little doofuses. Why? Well, aside from honestly being pretty damn cute, I admit to being a fan of the Cloudcuckoolander type of character (as my secret Pinkie Pie shrine you don't know about would demonstrate, if it existed). And come on, look at the guys and tell me that they don't have "Cloudcuckoolander" written all over them, to the point where they resemble little Pokémon versions of Quina from Final Fantasy IX, right down to the tongue and tendencies to help out in the kitchen.
Silly? Yes, but definitely endearing in their silliness. A weird yet lovable critter definitely worth having by your side. But still weird. Seriously, they require friggin' whipped cream to evolve...
Okay, and including the perfume Pokémon isn't helping things, I know. Truth be told, I was not a big fan of most of the new "Fairy" type Pokémon...I mean, aside from being mostly assigned to every stereotypically "cutesy" Pokémon possible, Game Freak gave them a type advantage against Dark, Fighting, and Dragon types, homes to some of the most badass Pokémon. Basically, if it weren't for the weaknesses to Poison and Steel, I'd think an alternate name for "Fairy" here would be "Mary Sue."
Thankfully, we have Fairy Pokémon like these Spritzee and Aromatisse to add a dash of creativity and attitude to this new type. I mean, fluffy scented masquerading plague birds of (implied) doom? How could you not love something like that? And why did they not have a secondary Dark type? Missed opportunities, dammit. And given that the Kalos region was modeled off of France, bonus points for being the most French Pokémon in the game. Well, aside from the poodle Pokémon that the game will shove in your face at every opportunity to remind you that BY THE WAY, THIS IS FRANCE. I've seen more than a few people show distaste towards Aromatisse, and while I see where they're coming from, I still think these are a couple of cute and unique Pokémon myself. Then again, I also chose Mr. Mime as one of my favorite Gen I Pokémon, so what the hell do I know.
In Pokémon X, the Pokédex immediately describes Goomy as the weakest Dragon-type Pokémon, and Goodra is essentially described as an extremely friendly purple lizard who doesn't look the least bit threatening. Game Freak, did you try to make a wimpy-looking dragon so that the game's Mega Evolutions and older designs wouldn't be overshadowed? Because if so, the sheer amount of fan art I've seen for these guys suggests that this is your Springtime For Hitler.
The evolution of Goomy to Goodra, from Derpy-ish slug to sleek, smooth, wide-eyed ass-kicker is a particularly well-designed one indeed (and one that might even have a touch of mythology to it) that I applaud. And its affectionate nature is indeed pretty sweet, conjuring up the image of many embarrassing yet adorable victory hugs after a battle. I am still surprised by its popularity, though. I just don't get what huge chunks of Japan, and deviantART especially, see in a giant slime monster with tentacle-like appendages that tends to get physically affectionate with its trainer a lot...and having realized what I just typed, I'll shut up now.
Alright, about 90% of why I chose these guys is largely because I just really, really wanted these games to include a frilled lizard Pokémon already. And what do you know, not only did they deliver, they did so in spades! Solar-powered frilled lizards who generate enough energy to do 40 mph runs? Oh, hell yeah! The sun-based color scheme is also a sweet little touch to the design as well, definitely creating an eye-pleasing little lizard. And it has a skittish and hyperactive look to it in both cases, which indeed ends up making it even more damn charming.
Oh, and did I mention that they can learn Surf? Yeah, remember all those times you forced to teach a Pokémon Surf just so you can cross a body of water, no matter how small it was (and yes, they sadly force you to do it in this game to advance as well)? You ever want to get revenge on those sections by electrocuting every damn Water Pokémon in your way with the power of the friggin' sun with the help of your high-voltage lizard friend who can run across water? Of course you do. And that's just one reason you need to love a Pokémon like this.
Now if you still feel that Pokémon X & Y still owe you a truly badass Dragon-type, then you'll be pleased to know that not only did they give you a badass bat dragon; they even threw in a set of built-in amplifiers to boot! Hell, they even incorporated it in Boomburst, one of Noivern's moves where it straight up crushes rocks and opponents with pure sound (insert dubstep/bass cannon jokes here). So basically you have a sleek, badass flying hunter who in milliseconds can switch to blowing you away with boombox ears.
And Noibat's no slouch as well, being able to incapacitate the mightiest of wrestlers (save for one, but we'll get to that) with a similar amount of ease. They're a bit tough to catch at first, but trust me when I say that this wicked duo are more than worth the effort. Bring the noise, yo.