Pokemon White Version
Pokémon Black Version and White Version (ポケットモンスターブラック・ホワイト, Poketto Monsutā Burakku & Howaito, "Pocket Monsters: Black & White") are role-playing games (RPGs) developed by Game Freak and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo DS. These games are the first in the fifth generation of the core Pokémon series of RPGs. Released in Japan on September 18, 2010, Black and White introduce 156 brand new Pokémon to the franchise, two of which debuted in the thirteenth Pokémon film in Japanese theaters on July 10, 2010. Prior to the games' release, they were the fastest DS games to reach one million consumer pre-orders in Japan.
Like previous Pokémon games, Black and White follow the journey of a Pokémon trainer as he/she trains and battles Pokémon to compete in Gyms and defeating the Elite Four, while destroying the evil plans of a criminal organization, in this case, Team Plasma. The games are independent of each other but feature largely the same plot and, while both can be played separately, it is necessary to trade between them in order to complete the games' Pokédexes.
The graphics were further improved from previous games, and includes more cutscenes. When talking to people, the dialog box has been changed to speech balloons, which appear over other characters' heads, allowing more than one character to speak at once. In addition to this aesthetic change, Japanese players will be given an option to switch to having kanji appear on screen, rather than just hiragana and katakana. During battles, the sprites of the Pokémon are fully animated and the camera changes position to highlight specific parts of the battle.
In addition to the day and night cycle first introduced in the Gold and Silver games, Black and White have introduced a seasonal cycle, with the seasons cycling every four months rather than being linked to the actual calendar. Outside areas will appear different depending on the season, such as changing of leaves in autumn or snow on the ground in winter. Certain areas will only be accessible during certain seasons, and different Pokémon can be found in the wild in winter when others were encountered in the other seasons. In addition to these features, the Pokémon Shikijika and Mebukijika have been designed to change their physical appearance along with the seasons of the game.
There are two new battle mechanics in Black and White: Triple Battles (トリプルバトル, Toripuru Batoru) and Rotation Battles (ローテーションバトル, Rōtēshon Batoru). In Triple Battles, both teams must send out three Pokémon at once. Which of the Pokémon can be targeted by any specific attack is dependent on the position of the Pokémon in the line up; Pokémon on the left or right sides can only target the Pokémon directly opposite of them and the two Pokémon in the center position on both sides, while Pokémon in the center can target all Pokémon in the field. Positions can be changed, but this uses up the player's turn. In Rotation Battles, both sides send out three Pokémon at once, again, but instead of a three-on-three match as seen in Triple Battles, it is a one-on-one match where the Pokémon in the front can be switched with either of the two other Pokémon sent out without using up a turn. Depending on the game version, one of these two new battle types will be found in greater quantity than the other; Black has more Rotation Battles than Triple Battles, and vice versa in White. Another related feature are the Combination Moves (コンビネーション技, Konbinēshon Waza); the starter Pokémon from any game can be taught one of the three moves that can be used in combination with each other to produce more powerful attacks. Another battle mechanic is found in the wild, where differently colored and styled tall grass will enable Double Battles against wild Pokémon.
Unique to Black and White is the Pokémon Dream World (ポケモンドリームワールド, Pokemon Dorīmu Wārudo), a game mechanic that is dependent on the official Pokémon Global Link website where the player can befriend Pokémon not normally obtainable in gameplay with unique Pokémon Abilities, which are later captured in an area known as the High Link (ハイリンク, Hai Rinku) after syncing the game back with the Dream World, in a mechanic similar to the Pokéwalker used in HeartGold and SoulSilver. The player can also maintain a house in the Dream World that other players can visit as well as grow Pokémon
The C-Gear (Ｃギア, Shī Gia) is a new mechanic that replaces the Pokétch on the Nintendo DS's second screen. It allows the player to control the various wireless capabilities of Black and White. These include connecting to other players through infrared communication (battling, trading, friend codes, and the "Feeling Check" function), wireless communications with friends in the Live Caster (ライブキャスター, Raibu Kyasutā) video chat or access to the High Link to transfer content from the Pokémon Dream World, connecting to the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection to sync with the Pokémon Global Link servers, and the new Pass By mode which allows the game to communicate with other games through IR when not being played.
The Feeling Check (フィーリングチェック, Fīringu Chekku) function tests the compatibility between two players, awarding them with one of two items depending on the level of compatibility. In addition to allowing players access to Pokémon acquired in the Dream World, the High Link also enables players to interact with each other and perform side games which award points that can be traded for "powers" that improve normal gameplay, such as increasing experience, capture rate or lowering prices of items in Poké Marts. The Pass By feature is another side game in which the player answers various survey questions, and depending on how many other games are interacted with, the players receive an item. Another new feature is Random Match (ランダムマッチ, Randamu Matchi), where the player can battle a random other player. When playing against other players online or in IR battles, a new mechanic called the Miracle Shooter (ミラクルシューター, Mirakuru Shūtā) allows for items to be used in battle to heal or improve the status of the players' Pokémon.
To transfer Pokémon between the older games and the new games, two features have been placed in Black and White. For normal transfer, the PokéShifter (ポケシフター, Pokeshifutā) feature is available after completion of the main storyline. Unlike the Pal Park feature that was in the Generation IV games, the PokéShifter is a mini-game in which after six Pokémon are transferred, the player uses the touch screen to launch Poké Balls at the transferred Pokémon which are moving about on the top screen to catch them within a time limit. Another feature called the Transfer Machine is used to transfer the Pokémon given away in promotions for the Pokémon: Zoroark: Master of Illusions film so the player can activate the special events to obtain the rare Zorua and Zoroark Pokémon. Unlike the PokéShifter, this function is available before the main game is completed.
In addition to the standard battling and Gym challenges, the player can compete in Pokémon Musicals (ポケモンミュージカル, Pokemon Myūjikaru), a side-game similar to the Pokémon Contests of previous games; the Battle Subway (バトルサブウェイ, Batoru Sabuwei), similar to the Battle Towers and Battle Frontiers of previous games; and on the Royal Isshu (ロイヤルイッシュ号, Roiyaru Isshu-gō), a cruise ship that the player can ride daily and fight various trainers aboard.
Black and White are set in the Unova Region, or the Isshu Region (イッシュ地方, Isshu-chihō) in the Japanese releases, a continental mass located far away from Kanto, Johto, Hoenn and Sinnoh. Unlike the previous regions which were based on locations in Japan, Unova is modeled after New York City. Several places in Unova were patterned after NYC districts and landmarks: for example, the Castelia City of Unova represents the lower Manhattan and the Sky Arrow Bridge serves as a stand-in for the Brooklyn Bridge. Unova also has an airport, an amusement park, and several mountain ranges. In addition to a diversity of new landscapes, the Unova region is also home to a diversity of people who vary in skin tone and occupation.
Like other Pokémon games, Black and White's gameplay is linear; the main events occur in a fixed order. The protagonist of Pokémon Black and White is a teenager who sets on their first step to journey through the Unova (Isshu) Region to become the Pokémon master. At the beginning of the games, the player chooses either Snivy (Tsutarja), Tepig (Pokabu), or Oshawott (Mijumaru) as their starter Pokémon as a gift from Professor Juniper (アララギ博士, Araragi-Hakase). The protagonist's friends, Cheren (チェレン) and Bel (ベル, Beru), are also his/her rivals and are Pokémon Trainers who occasionally battle the player. The player's primary goal is to obtain the eight Gym Badges of Unova and then challenge the Elite Four and the Unova region's Pokémon League Champion to win the game.
In addition to the standard gameplay, the player will also have to defeat the games' main antagonist Team Plasma, a group of Pokémon trainers modeled after Knights Templar who seek to liberate Pokémon from human oppression. The group is led by N (エヌ, Enu), a young man who was brought up alongside Pokémon and sees them as friends rather than as tools for sport. Throughout the game, the player will battle N, who will capture one of the two Legendary Pokémon of the region, the Deep Black (originally Black Yin) Pokémon Zekrom in Black and the Vast White (White Yang) Pokémon Reshiram in White. After the player defeats the Elite Four, N challenges the player to a battle as he has become the region's new champion, and the player will encounter the games' version mascot (Reshiram in Black and Zekrom in White), which the player must capture in order to proceed in the game, in the final battle with N. After N is defeated in the games' climax, he will realize that his ideas were wrong, just as his father Goetis (ゲーチス, Gēchisu) angrily laments that he had planned on N forcing all humans to give up their Pokémon so he would be the only one with Pokémon and rule the world. After Goetis is defeated, he is arrested, and the Unova League's true champion Adeku (アデク) resumes his position.
After Team Plasma's high ranking officers are defeated, Looker tasks the player with finding the other members of Team Plasma's Seven Sages so they can be brought to justice. After the Sages are arrested, the player can challenge the Elite Four, again, and then challenge Adeku so the player can become the Unova region's new Pokémon Champion. The player also gains access to the eastern portion of the Unova Region, which contains Pokémon that are obtainable in previous games, as well as access to two areas unique to either game: the ultra-metropolitan Black City (ブラックシティ, Burakku Shiti), home to powerful Pokémon trainers, and the White Forest (ホワイトフォレスト, Howaito Foresuto), home to humans and Pokémon living in harmony. Cynthia can also be found in this area of the game and can be challenged.
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