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Pokemon White Version
Format: Video Game|Change
Price:$46.90+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on March 6, 2011
Quick Personal Statement

I was in elementary school when the "pokemon craze" hit the US and everyone brought games and cards to school. I still have funny memories of getting my cards or gameboy confiscated because I was battling friends or trading during school. (It was much harder to be sneaky when you had to use a cable to connect your systems.) That being said, I only have fond and happy memories of Pokemon. However, as I started getting older, my interest in the series kept declining, but I still bought each new game. Honestly, I was a bit disappointed with Heart Gold / Soul Silver and still have not beaten it yet. I didn't have very high hopes for this game, however, I can tell you this game surpassed anything that I could have hoped for and is by far one of the best Pokemon games that I have ever played. My interest in the series has been reinvigorated. The core battle mechanics remain the same tested and true old formula, but the presentation has improved leaps and bounds! The graphics and environments are some of the best that I have seen on the DS. There are full 3D environments that look astonishingly good. Furthermore, Black and White will have seasonal cycles, as well as night/day cycles. Another added feature is triple battles where each trainer sends out 3 pokemon. I have only had a few hours to play the game, so I cannot speak for the plot as a whole or the post-story activities, but my brief experience with the game has been nothing but pure nostalgic fun.

Anyways, I'll leave the detailed reviewing of the game itself to someone else. I'll move on to what I really want to talk about: the differences between Black version and White version.

Differences -- Pokemon - White Version vs Pokemon - Black Version

Normally, it really doesn't matter which Pokemon version you get, because both are essentially the same thing, except for minor pokemon differences. However, surprisingly, for the first time in a Pokemon game, there are actually significant differences between the games. This time, there are unique regions to each game and the visual theme of each game is quite different.

~~~ Visual Theme ~~~
So, what do I mean by the visual theme? Well, Pokemon Black has more urbanized, industrial locations, whereas Pokemon White shows a more natural world. This can be seen throughout the game. You will see small differences such as a gardening patch in Mistralton city in Pokemon White compared to a building in the same spot in Pokemon Black. Most of the cities give off a natural atmosphere in White. In White, the cities have more grass, plants, and trees, and in Black the cities have more concrete, asphalt, and buildings. The cities in Black are more developed, and in some cases slightly futuristic-looking. Opelucid (Souryuu) City is the most notable; the city look almost entirely different between the two versions.

~~~~ White City / Black Forest ~~~~
Pokemon Black has Black City and white has the White Forest. These are the version exclusive regions I mentioned earlier. They fit the visual themes set forth by each game: Black City is a heavily urbanized area with several trainers to battle with Pokemon from lvl 40 to the mid 60s. There are also many item shops with items that can you help you in game. White City, on the other hand, is a natural forest with low leveled, unevolved Pokemon that you can catch. Black City will definitely help you more in terms of raising your own Pokemon's levels and getting supplies for future battles. However, White City will cater more to people who plan to collect Pokemon and try to complete their pokedex.

~~~~~ Special Battles - Triple and Rotational ~~~~
In both Pokemon White and Black, there are 5 special battles. Pokemon White has 4 Triple Battles and 1 Rotational Battle. Pokemon Black has 4 Rotational Battles and 1 Triple Battle. In both of these special battles, both trainers send out 3 pokemon. These special battles are a bit hard to explain without visuals. The mechanics the battles will be better explained in a simple way during game.

Triple Battle:
It is a 3 on 3 battle, however, the order you place your pokemon matters. The pokemon in the middle is can attack the enemy's middle, left, or right pokemon, but your pokemon on the left can only attack the enemy's pokemon on the left and the middle. Similarly, your pokemon on the right can only attack the enemy's pokemon on the right and the middle. So, your pokemon on the left cannot attack the opponent's pokemon on the right, and your pokemon on the right cannot attack the opponent's pokemon to the left. To further complicate things, attacks that damage all pokemon such as explosion or earthquake cause more damage when done by the pokemon in the middle, but also inflicts more damage to the pokemon in the middle.
** When I say left or right, I am saying it from the perspective of behind your trainer.

Rotational Battle:
Like the triple battle, both trainers send out three pokemon. However, this time, the pokemon are not fighting against each other all at the same time. Even though all three are sent out, the battle appears like a 1 vs 1 match. Each trainer sends one pokemon forward to battle as one would in a normal battle. But here's the twist: at the start of your turn, you can rotate between any of the three to send forward. You can think of this as basically a pokemon switch without wasting a turn. This adds to the battle strategy when considering types. For example, if your opponent has a grass type forward and you have a water type forward, you would rotate your water type to put a fire type in front.

Hopefully, my explanations made sense. If not, don't worry, they are far less complicated when the game explains it to you. If you like the Rotational Battles better, then you might want to gt Pokemon Black since it has 4 of those and only 1 Triple Battle. Maybe rotational battles aren't your thing and you want to do Triple Battles. Then, you should consider Pokemon White.

~~~~ Trainer Differences ~~~~
There are sometimes minute differences in the pokemon line up of different trainers. I don't really feel that this is significant to talk about. However, one somewhat large change is the gym leader in the 8th gym. Pokemon Black features a stern old man, whereas Pokemon White shows a young girl. These gym leaders have the same pokemon, the only thing different is their appearances/avatar.

Pokemon Black has the white Legendary Pokemon, Reshiram, which is a Dragon/Fire type.
Pokemon White has the black Legendary Pokemon, Zekrom, which is a Dragon/Electric Type.

Strategic Note: The sum of the base stats for both legendaries is 680, however, the spread is slightly different. Both have base 100 hp and 90 speed. Reshiram has 120 attack, 100 defense, 150 special attack, 120 special defense. Zekrom has 150 attack, 120 defense, 120 special attack, 100 special defense. This means that Reshiram is better suited to deal and take special attacks, while Zekrom is more suited to deal and take physical attacks.

In my honest opinion, I think the Dragon/Electric legendary will be far more useful for competitive battling. One of the best electric type pokemon is Zapdos. However, Zapdos is stunted by its flying type, leaving it vulnerable to devastating attacks such as a 50% health loss from Stealth Rock. This new legendary should easily be able to replace that spot. Plus, the versatility of a dragon type may put it ahead of other notable electric types such as Electivire.

~~~~~~~~Version Exclusives~~~~~~~~~~~

And of course, like all previous pokemon games. Each version has a few pokemon exclusive to only that version. I wouldn't stress out at the loss these pokemon though. You can get all of them through online trades later, if you really want to complete your pokedex and catch 'em all. Check the bottom of the review for a list.

~~~~ Conclusion ~~~~
Pokemon Black/White is definitely one of the best pokemon games to come out. I definitely recommend it to anyone of any age. Don't waste time deciding whether or not to get the game: get it. Now, the only decision you have is whether to get Black or White. I decided to go with Pokemon White. White version just appealed more to me and seemed more "open". Black version looked cluttered, in my opinion. Also, I feel that the Black Legendary (found in white version) would be more useful in battle. Try checking out a few screenshots online to help you decide which visual style you like better, then get whichever version you like better!

Pokemon - Black Version
- urbanized theme
- Black City (battle trainers and buy items)
- Dragon/Fire Legendary
- minor trainer differences (Old guy as 8th gym leader)
- more Rotational Battles

Pokemon - White Version
- natural theme
- White City (catch low level pokemon)
- Dragon Electric Legendary
- minor trainer differences (young girl as 8th gym leader)
- more Triple Battles

List of version exclusives:

Pokémon Black

#13. Weedle
#14. Kakuna
#15. Beedrill
#198. Murkrow
#228. Houndour
#229. Houndoom
#285. Shroomish
#286. Breloom
#311. Plusle
#313. Volbeat
#430. Honchkrow
#546. Mommen
#547. Whimsicott
#574. Gothita
#575. Gothorita
#576. Gothitelle
#629. Vullaby
#630. Mandibuzz
#641. Tornadus (legendary flying)
#643. Reshiram (legendary dragon/fire)

Pokémon White

#10. Caterpie
#11. Metapod
#12. Butterfree
#46. Paras
#47. Parasect
#200. Misdreavus
#261. Poochyena
#262. Mightyena
#312. Minun
#314. Illumise
#429. Mismagius
#548. Petilil
#549. Lilligant
#577. Solosis
#578. Duosion
#579. Reuniclus
#627. Rufflet
#628. Braviary
#642. Thundurus (legendary electric/flying)
#644. Zekrom (legendary dragon/electric)
+ Several Unevolved Pokemon you can catch in the White Forest:
- Pidgey
- Nidoran
- Abra
- Machop
- Bellsprout
- Gastly
- Rhyhorn
- Porygon
- Togepi
- Hoppip
- Magby
- Wurmple
- Seedot
- Ralts
- Slakoths
- Aron
- Trapinch
- Shinux
- Happiny
- Surskit

Update: I just beat the game. It was a fun RPG and I think I am going to now start prepping for competitive battling. I think what drew me into this game the most was that all the characters are brand new until you beat the elite 4. The base plot style is still the same: beat 8 gyms, collect pokemon, navigate through a few caves, solve some little puzzles, defeat enemies from an evil group in a big building, defeat that evil group at their hideout again, fight rivals, elite 4, etc. This style has become standard for Pokemon and the sales data shows it works remarkably well. This game brought back the feeling of the original red / blue as you had to guess what type each Pokemon was, learn new movesets, get legitimately surprised during evolutions, etc. This game really brought back the mysteriousness of Pokemon and their mystic allure that originally piqued your curiosity a decade ago when you first played. Since the game had all new Pokemon, the game inherently took more steps to lead you in and actually is far more beginner friendly than other games.

Looking toward the future: (purely speculation and personal opinion)
This little section isn't really part of the review; it's just a place for me to dump my stream-of-consciousness about how I feel about the inevitable sequel. With 649 Pokemon, I'm not sure if Nintendo will decide to make a whole new fresh set of Pokemon in their next game as they did in this one (then again, people on forums said that were doubtful of a follow up to 2nd gen ages ago when we hit 251). I think Nintendo may just add a few (around 100) new Pokemon and include many of the current 649 in the next game. Now that we have a 3DS, it's only a matter of time before Nintendo starts dropping hints and teasers for the next 3D Pokemon RPG. Even though I love Pokemon games, the thing that keeps me coming back for more isn't the story, but rather the battle mechanics and strategy involved. In my opinion, it seems like each new Pokemon game just applies the same plot template and changes a few things. It's clear from the sales data that these games are raking in money and are hugely successful, but I actually would like to see some variation in the next game. The general plot idea seems a bit overused and trite now after being adapted for 5 generations of Pokemon games. I actually really enjoyed the gamecube Pokemon RPGs Colosseum and XD. Maybe Pokemon could incorporate more RPG elements in terms of exploration and interacting with the world, perhaps a Collosseum-like RPG game modeling styles of other Nintendo RPG series like Zelda. Actually, now that I think about it, I realize that I don't know what exactly I would change; I just want to see something a little new. A new Pokemon game with the same plot line will sell millions, so I don't think GameFreak and Nintendo will gamble on something new when they found something that sells. Well, that's just my opinion; I'm sure many people would disagree with me. Regardless of plot, the battle mechanics have me hooked and I will definitely be buying the next Pokemon game. If you have some time to spare, drop a comment about what you want to changed/added/removed in the next game.
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on April 5, 2014
A great Pokemon game, but the newer Pokemon are kind of lame, some features have been taken out that existed in the past game (like the phone option and rematches in G/S/C/HG/SS), and the in-game backpack is horribly cluttered, reminding you of Gen I more than anything else. (WHY did they have to un-seperate Poke Balls from general items? I prefer HeartGold and SoulSilver's "too organized" backpack over this cluttered and confusing one.)

Also, C-Gear, the Nintendo DS's wireless communication system for the game, is extremely annoying and everytime you turn on the game, it'll prompt you numerous times if you want to turn on C-Gear and use it (which also quickly drains the DS' power and you'll rarely ever use C-Gear).

- Unova, Pokemon's version of the New York City area, is fun to explore. Its possibly the best region and may even be better than Johto.
- Pokemon learn moves at a much faster rate, even after evolving. For Smart Trainers, this means holding off evolution for a shorter time.
- The gym leaders are more detailed and likable than in the past, and their gyms are (mostly) challenging-but-fair.
- For the first time, TM's now have infinite uses, which adds a HUGE element of challenge for competitive battling (Egg Moves are however, still just as hard to obtain).
- Variety of new Pokemon per area and the new dual-type combinations (like Ghost/Fire or Grass/Steel) are pretty cool.
- The art and graphics are great and really use the power of the 96-bit Nintendo DS.
- The Trainer Card is good and you can now customize your own personality and Trainer Class.
- The shops (now merged with Pokemon Centers) usually have most items you'll need.

- Most of the new Pokemon kind of suck. So far, only the starters and a few (like Herdier, Tranquill, and Throh) have been good. Hate to admit it, but Generation I and Generation III still have the best overall Pokemon.
- Disorganized and hard-to-access backpack. Not enough separate pockets!
- Wild Pokemon level-curve is steep. Often times, wild Pokemon will jump 4 to 5 levels in ranges inbetween one route and another. Such as being as high as level 25 in one route, but then jumping up to 32 in the next route.
- The new interiors of the Pokemon Centers are tight, condensed, claustrophobic, and just plain UGLY.
- The Battle Subway is LAME and is not a great Battle Frontier replacement.

- No Pokemon application gadget to have rematch against NPC trainers with (like Pokegear, the PokeNav, or Poketch).
- The Xtransceiver (in-game smartphone) is under-utilized and would've been a nice equivalent of PokeGear or a PokeNav.
- C-Gear is ANNOYING!!! It does not replace the previous-gen Pokemon app devices at all. It is just a pain to use (or rather, select to not use).
- The Dream World is hard to access and overall, not worth it. Dream World is stupid.
- Too many pointless and stupid social networking items and apps that you'll likely never use.

Overall, the game is fun, but it doesn't feel like that new of an adventure. If you've played one Pokemon game, you've played them all. I now miss the Kanto Pokemon I've raised a thousand times before... What I wouldn't give for a Farfetch'd or Eevee or Smoochum in this game.
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on June 23, 2014
I skipped over several Pokémon games over the years. I was a Generation 2 guy playing Pokémon Gold in the days where 250 whopping Pokémon to collect. But when I purchased a 3DS in 2011 I decided it was time to get back into Pokémon. I purchased the Gold remake first and then played it intently. A few years later I pre-ordered and played Pokémon Y to completion. I had Pokémon from HeartGold I wanted to transfer but the new transfer system would not work with that game.

So I set forth to purchase a copy of White and White 2.

First of all, Pokémon White treats its audience like intelligent participants in a world that is unfriendly and wild. This is clearly an E +10 game and is in no way a hardcore title... but it presents a complex question to it's audience... Is fighting Pokémon, collecting Pokémon, and trading Pokémon ethical? And like any good question there is no straight answer. Even the best player of Pokémon has a Pokémon in their PC storage that they have not used in a very long time. Is that Pokémon lonely? Are they hungry? Are they claustrophobic? None of this is truly answered.

But beyond that, this game plays smoothly as an individual title with small rewards if you play the associated Pokémon Black title. Unfortunately for collectors, you cannot trade Pokémon between White and it's older peers Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, HeartGold, SoulSilver. There is an annoying minigame to transfer these Pokémon six at a time from one cart to another, but it requires patience. It irked me that I could not simply trade between them. Speaking of trading, Pokémon White 2 has full trading capability to the best of my knowledge.

The Pokémon in this title are some of the best I have seen. I am still favoring the Gen 1-2 style but the Gen 5 Pokémon really set the environment well. From lumbering stone ghost golems to brilliant blustering eagles, this set of Pokémon is worthy to collect.

As a whole, I would recommend this title to anyone from ten years old to thirty five. It asks good questions about the game played and sets a standard for Pokémon games in the future. While not perfect, it really seems to be the definitive DS incarnation of Pokémon so far. And White 2 improves upon the shortcomings of White with more activities, seasonal changes, competitions, mini-games, and good ol' fashioned Pokémon battles. If you are planning to get Pokémon White's PokeBank then I would certainly suggest getting this game to round out your collection.
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on January 16, 2017
I enjoyed Pokemon White. It was a significant upgrade over Diamond and Pearl in terms of in-game visuals, although as always the gameplay itself stayed the same. A much better game from a mechanical standpoint, although the creativity in terms of storyline and new characters is very painfully lacking.

>Updated graphics system, engine runs in 3D in multiple locations.
>Lots of new Pokemon, abilities, etc. Fun to play!
>Battles themselves are rendered better, more fun to watch and more varied sound and animation effects.

>Storyline for me was a little odd. Seemed inspired by animal rights movements, which was an interesting semi-political thing to bring into Pokemon.
>Some of the new Pokemon seem really forced in this generation. Garbage bags, ice cream scoops that evolve into more ice cream scoops, gears that evolve into more gears, etc.

Giving this game three stars. The game is fun, and I enjoyed it. Creativity lacking, technically well done. I'd recommend to fans, but not newbies.
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on January 9, 2018
Only bought this version so I could have the experience of catching all 156 Pokémon without resorting to other regions.
Totally worth it, not gonna lie.
Still waiting on Gray 3 and Grey 4.
Assuming no one takes Isshu with those names' striking and offensive asymmetry.
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on January 16, 2013
I am 24 years old and was in fourth grade when Red and Blue came out in America. I remember many happy hours spent with my GBC. After Gold and Silver, I was "too cool" to play and took a twelve year hiatus.

White & Black version brought me back. Aside from being wowed about the gameplay on a DSi (! backlit screens!) the game is engaging, sufficiently challenging, and even though it's the same old formula that Nintendo's been using for over a decade it still feels "new."

The game has lots of post Elite 4 activities too, which I like, as I'm not into competitive battling or EV training. In my opinion, the storyline of this game is a little more interesting than in previous ones - same old "struggle against evil people who want to misuse Pokemon" but White & Black version give it an interesting twist. The only irritating thing is that because I only play a few hours a week it took me a while to get to the White Forest, and I don't have any grass or wild pokemon in it because the timer ran out.

This is a great game to pick up for old and new fans alike. I'm in graduate school and it's the perfect distraction for relaxing in the small amounts of spare time that I have.

On a final note, it's nice to like Pokemon as an adult. What used to seem like an unaffordable bajillion dollars to ten year old me is now just the equivalent of a trip to the supermarket. Score one for growing up!
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on December 12, 2011
Pokemon White for Nintendo DS

I have been anxiously awaiting this game ever since they showed sneak peeks from Japan. Having played through Pokemon Platinum and SoulSilver, I had high hopes for White and was not disappointed.

Although much of the premise is the same as previous Pokemon DS games, there are some new 3D-style graphics for the cities/locations and the Pokemon are animated during the combat sequences. The biggest change that I noticed was that TM's are re-usable now. So instead of buying/storing large quantities of TM's, they can be re-used as many times as necessary.

My complaints about previous Pokemon games still applies to White, and that is the repetitive leveling process and the need to catch the correct type of Pokemon to successfully combat the bosses/opponents.

Overall: 4/5 stars, TM's are now re-usable and the 3D-style graphics are nice.
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on April 6, 2011
(This review also appears for the Pokemon Black version which I wrote first.)

Amazon had the best deal around for Pokemon Black, White, and the Special Edition Guide book. I have been playing Pokemon since the days of the GBA when I got the games for my sons. They grew out of them; I never did. lol When I heard that these titles where coming out; finally with new Pokemon not just a rehashing of the old titles, I was thrilled. Game Freaks has done an excellent job of coming up with an engaging story that is nothing like any of the games before it. They have also developed a host of new battle modes which keep basic play easy enough that brand new or younger players will still have fun and seasoned veterans will also be challenged. There are new ways to connect with other players around the world; can't wait for the Dream World to go active. I love the Pokemon games and so far these two have been the best. There will be enough room to store all Pokemon which means I have a few more to catch in previous if we could just get Nintendo and Game Freaks to release the really rare ones again like my Pokemon dreams. :)
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on December 1, 2015
I like it, but to me as a Pokemon fan since red and blue (played Yellow, Gold Silver Crystal, Ruby/Emerald, FR/LG, Colosseum, XD, Diamond/Platinum, Heart Gold, Soul Silver, Y and Omega Ruby) these games make me feel limited. The initial pacing is really slow. Your 2 friends Cheren and Bianca get really annoying real fast. The Pokemon are great however, and battles are super fun, I had several favorites like Darmanitan, Carracosta, Braviary, Haxorus, and Excadrill and liked most of the Pokemon besides the raccoon and the starters. If you like linear adventures this game is perfect for you, buy I always felt limited in the places I could go in the game as story always came first. I wanted to explore more.
I hear the sequel games fixed these problems and wish I bought one of them instead. (The real reason I bought this, it was cheaper and let me transfer my old Pokemon to gen 6)
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on April 23, 2012
Pokemon has been an awesome series since it started and I have had a game from every generation of Pokemon. This game adds a new 150 Pokemon to the series, which brings a lot of the excitement of not knowing what a Pokemon is back into the game. The game is fun playing through, with a lot more interaction from the gym leaders in the actual plot line and a more pertinent story than there usually is in the Pokemon games. One thing I found really interesting was that three cities remained closed off up until after you beat the pokemon league. After that you can visit these cities, where you will be able to find a lot of the pokemon from the older games. However, when you get to these areas, the Pokemon trainers there, somehow have pokemon that are a good 10 lvs higher than the elite four that you just faced.

The newly added features of the Dream World and the new forms of linking between players were all very interesting. The Dream World itself is a little kiddish, and if you are a fan who has been playing the series since it first started, you are probably at least 17ish years old and the idea that the Dream World is a significant part in finding some of the old pokemon is a little bit of a turn off. Other wise the built in semi-coop with the entralink forest is a really cool idea, but I haven't been able to test it out quite yet.
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