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VINE VOICEon October 23, 2013
NOTE: when Pokémon X & Y shipped there was a bug that could break your save game. That has been fixed in an update, so before you play you should run the update. It's really easy to do and the 3DS will walk you through each step--you turn on the network, launch the game, say yes to the prompt to update it, and walk through the prompts to get the update applied.

Pokemon X and Y are a fantastic progression of the Pokemon series, and just like with 'Black' I & II and 'White' I & II, my daughter and I each chose one of the two games--this time around she's playing 'X' and I'm playing 'Y'. It's amazing to see how much more we get in the terms of content, graphics, music, and of course general things to do. However, before I say more I think you should be aware that there is a savegame bug in the out-of-the-box new product that could kill your savegame. I'll post a link to an article about it in the comments, so update your game using your 3DS to get the fix before you get to Lumiose City!

If you're new to Pokemon, the shortest way I could explain it is that you are a young person in a land where many different kinds of creatures exist in the wild called 'Pokemon'. These creatures can be captured and cared for, and for many children this is a kind of rite of passage: you learn how to capture and train Pokemon, travel the land on your own, and have adventures. You use your Pokemon to have battles, against other trainers and against wild Pokemon. If it sounds a bit cruel, keep in mind that this is a game for young people and as such Game Freak goes out of their way to make the story a positive lesson: you have to take care of your Pokemon, they grow to like you, and no one ever dies--they just 'faint' and can be revived. Some creatures can 'evolve' into different forms, and with X and Y we now get 'Mega-Evolution' that adds to our options and makes the possibilities even more diverse.

If you're contemplating buying a Pokémon game for a child in your family, there is educational value to be had here: I'm amazed at the huge and creative variety of creatures, and my daughter has coached me on strategies: type matching and analysis are important skills that require memorization, reasoning, and a bit of basic math. You have to manage money to buy things and plan your inventory before taking a trip out of town. And sometimes your character is asked questions to make them think.

Pokemon X and Y are the latest entries in the series, and they take the new ground that was broken in Pokemon Black and Pokemon White (both of which had sequels, I & II) several steps further. Perhaps the biggest change in X and Y is that you interact closely with your Pokemon:

- play with them: there are fun minigames that you play together
- feed them: you get "Pokemon puffs" that look like little pastries that you can hand-feed them using the stylus
- interact with them: petting them makes them happy, and when they're in a particularly good mood they'll play a game with you in which you get to make faces with them: the 3DS camera will show your Pokemon your smiling, winking, or making a 'kissyface'. Your Pokemon delight in your antics.
- train them: you can play other minigames that boost their stats, allowing you to really bump up their skills! Have a Pokemon that's slow? Do lots of Speed training and they'll get faster. It's been huge amounts of fun watching my favorite Pokemon's stats raise and they really do perform better in battles.

All of this revolves around a central story line, with good guys and bad guys, and the difference between X and Y seems to be that the storyline in 'Y' appears to go into a little bit darker territory than 'X', though both have the same overall story. You are encouraged to use the wireless aspects of 3DS to trade, battle, and 'see' each other's Pokemon when you're with someone else who is playing X or Y. You also get "O-Powers", which can be used to bump up stats as well. And early on in the game you have a chance to choose one of the three first-gen 'Starter' Pokemon and add them to your party, which is a really nice nod to the earlier games.

There is a lot more to X and Y in that your character can now change clothes and mix and match different outfits. You can buy clothes in various boutiques throughout the land, and my daughter loves coming up with her own fashion ideas. Your character can shoot 'promo videos' of themselves, though this bit is kind of weird and a bit lame, like the 'movies' that you could make in Pokemon Black and Pokemon White...not very clear how it works, not sure exactly what the purpose is.

There are huge benefits this time around too: most of the game is animated, and it all has a very nice cel-shaded look (think Sly Cooper or recent Zelda games). Camera angles are fairly dynamic, especially during battles, when the camera pans around or does split-screen effects, etc. Battle is a lot more animated, with more visual effects. The music sounds really great, as if it's been orchestrated this time around. The region you are in resembles a European village, complete with a lot of French-sounding names and places. As a very long-time player of JRPGs, I really didn't mind the look of the prior games at all--but I really LOVE the new look & feel of Pokemon X & Y! But the biggest boosts to the gameplay are:

- Experience Share isn't specific to one Pokemon: it's in your pocket and causes bonus XP to be shared with every member of your party
- It used to be that if you captured a Pokemon, no experience was handed out for the battle: now, you still get XP.
- It also used to be that if a Pokemon fainted during a battle and wasn't revived before the battle was over, they didn't get XP. They do now! I even had a Pokemon faint and level up while fainted. This was a pleasant surprise that makes level-grinding easier to do.

If you're new to the Pokemon games and this is your first one, X and Y are a great place to begin--you'll be a bit spoiled! If you're a fan of the original games, picture this as another step forward, with a whole new look. I've really enjoyed the additions and changes, as most of them seem aimed at making the entire experience of a Pokemon game more enjoyable.
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on January 13, 2014
Ever since I bought this game, my 5 year old cousin has been chanting some diabolical verse about being the best like no one ever was. He has been chasing small animals and throwing balls at them. Whenever I ask him to stop he just tells me he has to catch em all. And just the other day he got enough badges to train Charizard so...I guess you could say I am reasonably concerned about this.
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on October 15, 2013
Let me begin by saying that I am a long, die hard, Pokemon fan. I began back with Pokemon Ruby, and subsequently moved to play the first and second generations. I was absolutely and completely mesmerized by the amazing fun and thrilling rush of playing any Pokemon game. I still remember skipping middle school to stay home and train my Larvitar in Pokemon Silver. I still remember bringing my Gameboy Advance everywhere to try to find Surf in Pokemon Red. I vividly remember beating the Elite Four in Pokemon FireRed for the first time and maniacally pressing A in hopes of catching Mewtwo with the UltraBall.

However, things have changed. I am a college student now. Pokemon Black and White, was for me, a major disappointment. I logged over 100 hours in Pokemon Pearl and Platinum and barely even got my 7th badge in Pokemon Black before completely quitting and never touching it again... I feared the worst, oh god, did I outgrow my childhood? Was I becoming more cynical, more serious, heaven forbid, more mature?! No!! Where was my childhood thrill that I got from training my Dragonite, capturing Lugia, and chasing down Mesprit?! I feared the fun would never return and I was just another grown - up...

Well, Pokemon Y brought it back... and during midterms week.

I have logged in more than 20 hours with Pokemon Y so far, (who needs microecon anyways?) and I barely got my 8th badge, and I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THIS GAME. I feel the same rush I felt when I was in middle school training my pokemon! This game is great! It fixed all of what was wrong with Generation V such as boring and lackluster Pokemon interactions, and revamped the system without taking away my beloved formula of capturing Pokemon.

My Charizard, Raichu, and Greninja are all ready to tackle the Elite Four and I feel like a Pokemon Master again! DEFINITELY BUY THIS GAME IF YOU LIKE POKEMON. Even if you were disillusioned with Pokemon Black and White, give XY a try. I did, and I do not regret it. The graphics are amazing, and the magic is certainly there.

Pokemon Y brought some well needed air to the franchise and I can say that I am a Poke Maniac, once again.

This game feels a lot like Generation III and IV! This feels like a TRUE Pokemon game!
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on October 22, 2013
I've played all the Pokemon games, my favorite is SoulSilver and HeartGold. Black and White, Black and White 2 were bad compared to the other games. Newer players might not care as much, but I feel the games have lost there way. The older games felt more like an open world game and didn't hold your hand and tell you where you need to all the time. You don't have as many "friends" in the old games, but I feel they push them on you way too much, and don't give you reasons to care about them. Anyway here's a list of more of my thoughts on the game.

Up points:

- The new Pokemon are better designed IMO than B and W.

- I like that you get two starters that's a huge plus.

- Customization is very welcomed.

- No more flat world!

- The game is very pretty, and so are the 3D models of Pokemon.

- Gyms are well designed.

Down points:

- Some of the MegaEvolves are very badly designed.

- There are only 3 new legendaries. You can only get 2 of them in either X or Y. I loved to hunt/catch legendaries but it's no fun when the other legendaries in the game are already catchable in SS and HG, and they are so easy to get to. They could at least let us catch legendaries that weren't catchable before. ( eg. Deoxys, Celebi, Jirachi, Mew, Manaphy, Arceus, Victini, Keldeo, Meloetta, Shaymin, and Genesect. )

- Would be that it's a 3DS game but only some parts are 3D. The only conclusion I can draw from this is that they made the game to coincide with the 2DS which came out the same day for some reason...

- Post game is laughable compared to the other games not counting B and W. In SS and HG you can explore another Pokemon's region.

- They close ever area until you progress the story, it really breaks immersion when every time you try to go to a new area they say something like: "Sorry I'm looking for something." And push you back so you can't go buy them.

- There are very few areas that feel like they are just there to explore. You just keep going to the next city A to B most of the time.

I'm sure I have more complaints and probably more things that are positive, but I'll end it there since I can't think of any more right now. Sorry if my views don't compare to yours. Please feel free to debate it with me. I really hope this isn't where gaming is going there's detail in a lot of the games these days, but there could be a lot more care and time into making them. Thanks for reading!

[Update]: One more thing I just learned after beating the game that you can't transfer from black and white or any DS game for that matter until they release apps on Dec, 27 2013. Good thing I didn't care about playing with my old Pokemon, and I'm sure not to pay $5 a year to upload a tiny file to their servers.
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on October 24, 2013
I don't consider myself a huge fan of the Pokemon series. I've played Ruby, Black 2, and Y, and liked them all but just can't get into them as much as other people. With Y, I was hoping that would all change. I wanted to get an Iv/Ev trained team with good Pokemon and learn the strategies, because why not?

But that's currently out of reach. You can't transfer Pokemon from older games. You have to wait for the $5 a year Pokemon bank coming out December 27th, 2013 in US, assuming it isn't delayed. Sure, you get a month free, but that's only good for people who bought it beforehand. Maybe this wouldn't be so bad if I didn't have to wait two months to use it?

Does this detract from the game itself? No, the game is pretty good with excellent graphics, good music and fun gameplay, and of course creative Pokemon. Does it detract from my enjoyment? Yes, it does. I don't want to recatch a ton of Pokemon I planned on training, and I don't want to have to miss out on the extras in Y just because I'm stuck with Black 2. For now, this goes back on my shelf, and I probably won't be picking it up again (I did beat the game).

If you've never played Pokemon before, or you don't care about transferring Pokemon from older games, then this is a 5 star game. I admit, I should have been more informed but despite following many news sites, I apparently didn't pay attention enough to know this major drawback. If I had known, I wouldn't have bought the game, and I wouldn't be making this review. I honestly never thought I would be REQUIRED to use the Pokemon Bank to transfer Pokemon to Y, that baffles me.
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on August 3, 2014
Flat out awful game!

No story line

Bad graphics

You want a real RPG go play Final Fantasy!
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on July 8, 2015
Really annoyed that is dosnt say anything about needing SD card to play this game. My sons other games don't require it.
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on December 18, 2013
I bought it on the 3 day on rout 8 you cant move it is a hornbill game it is bad
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on September 9, 2017
This Pokémon game is absolutely stunning like Pokémon White was back in 2011. The online trading is so fun and the Pokémon present in the game are overall pretty cool! Chespin, the grass type starter is who I picked and he's amazing!!!! Sooooo cute!!! 💛💙 Minor spoiler: I'm so glad Professor Sycamore gives you one of the generation 1 starters a bit into the game!! I picked my all-time favorite Pokémon, Bulbasaur!!!! 💚💚💚💚💚💚 It literally made my day because I was just thinking how I wanted either a Bulbasaur or a Charmander who debuted in Pokémon Red and Blue waaaay back in 1998!! I can't believe how fun this game is it's so cool. I didn't think anything could top Pokémon White but if any game can, it's probably Pokémon Y!!!

Thank you so much, GameFreak for creating such a beautiful-looking game that just sucks hours away! Right now I'm in like the 4th town, Lumious City which is where you meet Professor Sycamore and he gives you a chance to keep Bulbasaur, Charmander or Squirtle after you battle him. He's not too hard either. It was fun though!

Lastly, I'm gonna post a picture of Chespin cause he's so cute!!! He is the cutest starter this generation if you ask me!

5 well-deserved stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
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on December 8, 2015
1) Animation/Game Functionality A+
This game is beautiful and so far I haven’t found a bug despite its sophisticated functions. You can travel many ways and the button work fine. This game also finally figured out how to use the touch pad effectively. It is where we get trades and the mini-games to help with EVs. It also makes organizing the box a lot easier than other games.
2) Exploration- The World A+
This game has the best exploration than any other pokemon game in the series. The places between gyms you go through are numerous. There are about two cities explored between every gym. This game also makes the city have more than pokemon as their center. There are coffee places and hotels in major cities. There are also clothes stores where the character can buy new clothes. The routes are beautiful and diverse as well.
3) Pokemon B
This is where this game gets out of hand. This region has too much pokemon. Around 450 and has 3 pokedexes. Every route has about 4 new species not in previous routes. It can be overwhelming or good for collectors depending on perspective. This game may be better for collectors that do have access to internet and want to collect as much as possible. I consider my self a collector and raiser. I am currently raising two boxes of pokemon to level 100. I normally go for one but this game has too much pokemon to narrow down to just one box. The new pokemon are actually good additions. The fairy type also add new complex but it is annoying encounter a past normal type and not being able to use the same strategies against it.
4) Raising Pokemon Mixed
This is where the problem maybe with this game. Getting experience pts is ridiculously easy. Pokemon don’t split experience like they use to. They now get full points when participating. Also exp. Share works ridiculously well. It is too easy to get experience points. Getting EVs does hurt from this but there is a new mini-game to help raise evs. I am not one that likes in-game mini games so the quality is unclear. Happiness and egg hatching is easier because a lot of items are given to help these things go a lot faster.
5) Trade/ Link Battle A+
Trading has two major changes. One is that there is no need to go to Pokemon Center another is that there is now Wonder Trade. Wonder trade is where you trade a pokemon of yours to get a random pokemon from somebody else. It is either good or bad depending on need. It is good to fill pokedex of easy to moderate to catch pokemon. I find it to be fun because I get easy to get pokemon from Sapphire/Ruby that don’t come in Y/X.
6) The Story C
Pokemon games could use real storyline. Black and White actually had good premise for a pokemon game. This one has the lamest storyline where the bad guys make less sense than Team Galaxy from Generation 4. Nobody plays pokemon for the story but it could help.
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