So, am I going to make this sort of thing a segment from now on? Well, I’ll flat out say that I am probably not going to unless I am thrown a large quantity of high quality and more or less completed Pokemon games. I have ultimately decided that Betas are a shadow of a game’s true quality as they are, well, incomplete titles and I have tried all English completed RPG Maker VX titles according to a listing I had found. But before getting into the only title I actually beat in this little adventure, I have some things to say about two others.
Firstly, Pokemon Island, or as I like to call it, Pokemon Island Alpha, despite how it was listed as complete. The game’s premise is essentially one following the Battle Frontier route more than the traditional Pokemon adventure, centered on going into a series of battles for progression with exploration of areas being unlocked as time goes on. Downside to all of that is that the map design of the main area is very cramped, while the pretty small isolated areas that are unlocked contain some very surprisingly poor map design. As in the creators were clearly not using proper tiles that came with Pokemon Essentials, which all of these games are built off of. Even then, it quickly devolved into a slow grind heavy quest for catching a large number of hard to find Pokemon. Like level three Kangaskhans and level five Scythers in the first area. Although, I am more than fond of the ability to choose the battle music, but that hardly made the game more interesting.
What I did find to be more compelling than Pokemon Island is Pokemon Survival Island, even though I played them for two hours and twenty minutes respectively. Survival Island was described on the Indie Game Database of all places as being Minecraft mixed with Pokemon, which I think was actually a Minecraft mod, but that’s besides the point. The reason why I only played twenty minutes is a simple one, the game is very slow and battles with wild Pokemon take forever. I would list levels here, but the game very much hides away the levels in favor of a question mark for reasons unknown. Point is that I encountered what had to be a level ten Roserade right outside of the starting area, and it brought down my level seven Mudkip down after I spent five minutes trying to take down a Sandshrew. There may be some sort of depth, but one look at the very poorly organized crafting system fueled by the mundanity of berry picking the game boasted made me promptly uninstall the title, likely forever since the game was last updated in summer of 2013.
Pokemon Fusion Generation is a title I reluctantly downloaded, expecting it to be something of a joke taken to new heights. Afterall, the idea of Pokemon fusion was something I pondered back when I was watching Dragon Ball Z’s Buu saga while playing Pokemon Ruby and was a bit of a joke when somebody made a thing that combined every Gen 1 Pokemon. Yet the actual content is actually surprisingly professional, even though there are some twists that make it sound like something from one of those Pokemon sprite comics I loved back when I was twelve. The story is simple, after both the first and third generations, which take place at about the same time for those unaware, the Hoenn champion decides it is time for another journey, this time in Kanto and following a similar, though not exact route as the Gen 1 protagonist did. Yet things get dicey before the first gym as Bill unveils a machine that combined an Eevee with a Pikachu, and ultimately decides that his actions were ultimately wrong after an old man tells him he did the bad thing.
From there, it is a quest to stop the still prevalent and now united teams of Aqua and Magma with the help of fused Pokemon given to you from Gym Leaders along the way. Also there’s probably something more to it in the endgame, but I just stopped after the 44 hour mark when I defeated Red. However, seeing as how it is using Firered and Leafgreen as a base despite not being a mod,it’d be easier to say how the game differs from the solid, although flawed title. Firstly, a misstep that I can easily see being justified is the implementation of Generation 3 movesets, which I expressed upset towards in my prior adventure with Pokemon. It left me with a Growlithe until level 49, when he finally learned flamethrower, which cannot be obtained until the end game, along with about half of the other TMs. All of which are oddly multi-use, but I’d hardly complain about such a convenience.
One thing that would be convenient would be some form of in game trading guide, as there are about forty individuals who have trade exclusive evolutions and Pokemon in this game. Implementing many more Generation 2 and 3 Pokemon into the mix, and ultimately allowing for more diverse and powerful Pokemon. It also made the training process far easier due to the EXP boost they posses, along with something of a godsend in the form of the ability to double and triple the game’s speed. Combine these with a few sections where the game does the Ally thing from Diamond and Pearl, and it made pretty much made every other combat system in nearly every generation of Pokemon games come across as unnecessarily slow.
That said, I found the main area where the game is trying to mix things up, the fusion Pokemon. From what I could tell by looking on the game’s wiki, most fusion pokemon were designed more or less for the sake of design. A move that results in some of the most adorably horrifying designs that left me screaming with glee when I was home alone and nobody would question my actions. Yet, Pokemon can be viewed as numbers through the eye of a team builder, and I pretty much care only about that and types. Neither of which were particularly enticing to me, as the decisions to combine Pokemon like Chancy with Electabuzz and Wurmple with Wailord resulted in very odd Pokemon I wasn’t sure how or even if they should be used.
As for the production values, I was surprised the game ran as well as it did considering I noticed a few not fully finished maps. Two of which certainly make me revoke my former compliment, as they produced a biblical amount of lag and frame rate drop as ice tiles were something that RPG Maker apparently does not like. Still, considering only a few new areas are introduced, I suppose this was hardly a priority and the game does function and even pass as looking official even if May’s sprite does change minor colors during certain animations. A fix that just about anybody with Paint could implement.
The fact that I dropped 44 hours into Fusion Generation and am looking forward to a sequel should be a good enough form of recommendation. It has technical gripes and its main shift does come across as questionable, but it is a Pokemon game that has the ability to speed up the combat to almost insane levels. Not the best, would appreciate a bit of an update in some respects, but it is the best RPG Maker made Pokemon game I’ve tried, and I’ve tried most of the ones I could find even if it was just for five minutes.