Poké Ball Z?! Pinkie Reviews: Dragon Ball Z Team Training

My sweet Island guests! Hi how are you doing today?! Hope you are well! Two of the fandoms I am most active in is Pokémon and Dragon Ball, so when you get the chance to play a rom hack that combines these two things are bound to be good. Time to evolve to a Super Trainer and use Explosion on a wild Yamcha as we venture into Dragon Ball Z team training!

<Editting Pinkie Here! What Bad Luck I lost my own images! I posted them in a wrong place and now I can no longer acces them so while the images you see will not be of my journey! I can assure you I definitely finished the game!>

Dr Brief introduced my female trainer Pinkie to the wonderful world of Dragon Ball, in this world I have to train up powerful fighters and make my ways across gyms all across the land so I can prove my worth as a fighter trainer and eventually I can take on the four Kais. It’s a journey that will take you through locations such as Mount Paozu , Namek, The Red Ribbon Army Base and Makyo City.

Yet before I can venture out into this , slightly,  Dragon Ball themed world I have to pick my starter first.  We get the choice out of Goku, Vegeta and Adult Gohan. All can evolve multiple times. With Gohan being able to go Super Saiyan and Ultimate, Vegeta being able to go Super Saiyan and Majin Vegeta and Goku being able to go Super Saiyan and Super Saiyan 3.  However End game all can go beyond, with everyone learning super Saiyan God and even Super Saiyan Blue.. and Goku being able to go Ultra Instinct as well. Goku also is able to go Golden Oozaru and Super Saiyan 4 and if you pick Goku you can also catch a Vegeta later on and can fuse them together.  Goku gets a tiny bit more love than the other two ..but hey  that’s how the show does it as well!

I picked up Goku…as I really wanted to make him go Ultra Instinct.. mostly because I wanted to see how ridiculous his stats would be!  I did not give him a nickname because… well I kinda feel bad giving these characters nicknames as they have their own names so ..I decided to go nickname-less. If I had chosen to go nicknames I would have made silly ones…like naming Piccolo Eggplamber or something! Still I had a serious job..defeating the four Kais.  So I grabbed  hand full of capsules and began tossing them on Krillin and Piccolo  as I build myself a team of canonical good guys! Choosing that route proved to be a mistake. 

Dragon Ball Z has always been about transformations, stronger opponents and bigger challenges, this is reflected in the game as well.

Perfect Cell at level 30 has way higher stats than Lvl 30 Final Form Frieza. Lvl 20 Super Saiyan Goten is stronger than Lvl 20 Yamcha, by a fair margin. This makes the game get it’s unique feeling.. your team is always changing. Krillin is quite good to have until level 25 or so but after that he becomes utterly useless as even the wild encounters you meet will have better stats. My level 22 second form Frieza had better stats than my level 31 Krillin. Some characters are exceptions to this, for example Piccolo stays fairly relevant throughout the game in terms of power, he can match with the non legendary characters. Not being that much weaker than Perfect Cell or even Kid Buu. 

He does however..get in trouble later on because he does not learn any good new moves. The third gym lets you fight the androids (Cell is the fourth gym)  so around the low level 30’s Piccolo learns Hellzone Grenade and after that.. nothing really.  Capsule Moves  you find can help.. but overall .. Dragon Ball Z Team training focuses on advancing getting better stuff rather than making stuff work.. so it plays quite a bit different from regular pokemon. It’s a change I hated at first, but later came to appreciate. It is willing to move away from Pokémon to be more Dragon Ball, not the Dragon Ball Hero stuff either.. where suddenly characters all become hyper powerful.. no it follows the Z story..if a character stops being relevant in the story it kinda becomes less relevant as a game character as well. That does make this game a bit grind heavy though…and for the first time ever in a Pokémon game.. I had to use 3 legendaries plus two characters who have near Legendary stats in order to win against the Kais.  You always have to be aware of more powerful creates and you have to make that swap. (Well unless you like grinding into insanity.. but still your better of improving) 

This does mean the game is not as tactical, rather it’s a bit of a resource management like game. Finding fighters with good stats or move pools, searching for fusing items and good techniques and the best way to do this is to know stuff about Dragon Ball Z. You’ll want to pick fighters that evolve and how do you know people evolve? By having watched the series but also the extra content. Super Saiyan Bardock is a thing, but you can also transform him , Raditz or Nappa into an Oozaru using a Moonstone. You can catch a Trunks and Goten and fuse them together into a Gotenks and yes you can even make Gogeta or Vegito. If you do not know about these though, you’ll never guess the Fusion combinations because there are well over 100 fighters in the game. If you do not know Frieza is stronger than Aqua or if you don’t know Bunyon and Giran are just from Dragon Ball , you will struggle to know what is good on your team. So If you are a  just a Pokémon Fan, wanting to play a interesting Rom Hack this isn’t for you. If you are a Dragon Ball fan who knows nothing about Pokémon but just want more content..this game has a few quirks and issues as well. So this game is only for fans of both. It’s literally a fusion!

While on the surface combining these two ideas can still result in a rather interesting game, this Rom Hack doesn’t really pull it off for me.

Mostly due to its poor balancing. There are only a few types that really matter in the game, being Fire, Fighting, Steel and Dark.  Ice , Grass and Electric are in there as well as a few rock and Psychic type moves but it’s extremely sparingly.  Officially typing matchup should have remained the same.. but I don’t think quadruple damage is a thing..or maybe it’s only quadruple damage that is a thing.. I can’t figure this out. Hitting Frieza who is a Dark Ice type with a fighting  type move is super effective, while hitting him with a Kamehameha is effective normally. I can not just forget the old typing system and since it does still refer to the old typing system this is something I seem unable to master. Fire not super effective against Ice? I just don’t get it.. Electric still beats water, fighting beats dark. Who knows! 

As a result I just end up doing “something” spam powerful attacks, 90% of the moves are fire of fighting type moves anyway.  This feeling is enlarged by the fact that the game is mostly based on the Japanese version of Dragon Ball Z. What I mean by this is that we for example do not get Android 18 but instead C-18..as in the original they are referred to as cyborgs or just numbers. That isn’t a bad thing but it might leave you scratching your head if your a dub kid. What IS a problem for Dub-people is that all the techniques are phonetic Japanese as well. So  Special Beam Cannon is Makankosappo, Solar Flare is Taiyoken, After images is Zanzoken and the Spirit Bomb is the Genkidama. I love the sub and I know the techniques by those names but if you are one of those Dub is better folks, you’ll wonder what techniques are which.. and since half of the charm this game is recognisability of all the characters and such I can see that being an issues for you! There still is plenty there and once you get used to it , it will be fine but I can imagine how this would not feel as YOUR Dragon Ball… so  this is a a game for fans of both Dragon Ball and Pokémon but mostly catered to those that watch subs?! That’s a specific niche right there.

While that did not effect me I felt it did needed to be said, what did bother me however is how poor the artwork can be at times. While I do use techniques for my content very similar to these.. like using pre-existing assets wherever possible this game really uses a lot of different styles. Most character sprites come from games like Dragon Ball Z Super Sonic Warriors, but Bunyon’s sprite is from Dragon Ball Advanced Adventures, while some sprites like general Red are made by the team itself. As a result it can feel a bit hotchpotchy.  Goku base form for example is a very thick outlined sprite and when he evolves he goes into his Super Sonic Warrior Sprite, while Gohan and Vegeta  already use earlier sprites from the get go. It just takes a bit of consistency out and makes some evolutions feel REALLY disappointing.The same can be said for the order towns are laid out in, while we do progress throughout the story , Pewter City is Saiyan Saga, Into Cerulean being the Namek Saga, into  The Android saga.. we suddenly get Makyo town after that which is Garlic Jr’s story…which takes place before the Android saga.. I do not mind persé that stuff is out of order.. but I have a bit of trouble with doing  both in AND out or order it makes the game feel needlessly sloppy.

Since this game is a Romhack the map is exactly the same as it was in Kanto.. just buildings have replaced sprites , like Mount Paozu having capsule homes and Namek having green water and blue grass.

Yet in its core the game is still the exact same game as it was in Kanto, the official Pokémon game however explained way better where to go to next. If you do not know, this game can have you search a bit.  Some buildings and locations HAVE been replaced however, for example both “rocket hideouts” are  now in the same town. Capsule Corps and the Game Corner are both in Gingertown, While Satan City now has the developer building. The way to the Power Plant is also different. So since it is so familiar but randomly tosses stuff around , it can also be a bit confusing to fans. It’s a shame  the game choose for this half and half route as I like that some things are different but treading familiar ground for 90% of the adventure makes those 10% a bit frustrating. I actually do love to explore, but when something is so familiar with for like the majority of the game.. .Either I find myself disappointed they did not do more stuff like that.. or I search around aimlessly as they chose to change one trivial thing.

The game would also have been more fun if they chose a story slightly more Akin to fighters where not everyone can use their full abilities so the playing field could be more even. I at first struggled big time during the pokémon league. Everyone around their level 50’s  gets so little Power Point in moves that you burn out in no time and the level hike was quite large. I was seriously underleveled by the end.. but since every Kai had something like A Krillin or a Zarbon 2 in their team I just send out Shenron, let him boost up his attack  since weak characters can barely damage it, heal up and sweep a team. This also worked if I used Broly, or Frieza or whoever had a setup technique. Everyone has that one weak fighter that completely unbalanced any fight. It was nice that some technique was required for the final part.. but it felt more like an exploit and not that excited.

I was going to play the post game and get myself a Ultra Instinct Goku but the post game is locked behind having to have caught 60 fighters. Since most of them are so useless, I did not particularly bother with catching so I had just so many work left to do that I just gave up. Dragon Ball Z Team Training is not a bad game, it’s just a crazy little Dragon Ball experience but the system is to unbalanced and fighters are too useless to sell me on the collecting aspect. In the end these two franchises do not mix very well.  I had my fun exploring the world, I had an enjoyable time but I would have had a better time playing either pokémon OR Dragon Ball Super Sonic Warriors. In the end I’d compare it to a Peep Box.. it’s fun to stare at it for a while wondering where everything goes and discovering the scene but if you stare at it long you notice some things are cut out a bit iffy and there isn’t that much going on. Fun to experience  but in the end what you get is only paper thin. It’s fun to recognise things but not particularly fun to play.

The Verdict!

I had some good times time with this game but mostly in the first half the second half got quite frustrating having to substitute my entire time all the time, also I do not really know who this game is for.. it really asks some knowledge of Dragon Ball Z and Pokémon to play.. and in terms of Dragon Ball the sub specifically. Do you know of a Rom Hack or Fan Game I should play next? From now on once per 4 weeks I shall review a Pokémon fan game! You can help me determine what is next! Thank you for reading and if you like my content and would happen to have some funds you do not know what to do with..consider supporting me on Ko-Fi and join Camp Coconut!

Gotta Steal them All: Pokémon Fire Red Rocket Edition

Prepare for Trouble! Horsea use Bubble!
 To protect Kanto from Devastation! To steal peoples pokémon across the nation!
To denounce the evils of Oak and Lance!  I now play a Rom-hack on Gameboy Advance!
Pinkie

Plays!
Team Rockets  New Rom-hack of Fire Red!
So boot up the Rom.. and start with a rat!

Pinkie! Reviews that!

For the first time since pokémon Gold, I am a male Pokémon Trainer! And not just any pokémon trainer.. A Team Rocket Grunt… with pink hair! His name is Pinkie… how fitting! Pinkie is not me because he is one mean S.O.B… well he had the chance to be either a good spirited Rocket who doesn’t steal much Pokémon or be one who steals everything.. given how this game is actually about being evil it did not seem to make sense to go with the goody two-shoes route as it would invalidate one of the special mechanics of the game.

That would be kind of like installing a mod in Skyrim that improves human custom characters.. and then you play an Argonian. Or installing an extra hard difficulty level.. and then play on Normal. So this Pinkie had to be one S.O.B.  But let me stress that this guy is not me! He gets a Rattata out of a box of Rattata as we start our adventure in the Cerulean Game Corner Rocket Hideout.  That is such a clever idea! We also meet Ronnie.. an enthusiastic looking fellow that is a new recruit as well. He teaches that since we are lowly grunts we can only steal from young children and old people! As we can intimidate those into handing us their pokémon!

He takes me out to Celadon City Square and we find a girl playing with her two new pokémon she got for her birthday! Rattata  beats up  her Pidgey and her Spearow and I get to steal one of her beloved new friends!…Oof This is going to be harder than I thought. I just have to remember I am not this Pinkie! I reluctantly steal her Pidgey. Troughout the remainder of the adventure I would never steal from someone who only has one pokémon. Because Ronnie stole her Spearow.. leaving the girl with 0 friends.. the poor thing.  I wasn’t even going to use the Pidgey but I had no choice!  I decided to nickname my Pokémon very random names. Like Xibu and Ipsor.. just a random collection of consonants and vowels so I don’t see them as other peoples pets! Still getting Pokémon this way is kind of interesting! It reminded me a bit of the Coliseum games! Yet more evil! A few towns in and I was stealing left and right.. with the only rule never to leave someone without a single pokémon! Because everyone deserves a friend!

Otherwise I tried to be as evil as possible.. in a game where you have to be mean , you better be mean so I beat up people’s boyfriend, I snatched someone’s gold tooth , I robbed a Pokémart and more! Evil. it pained my heart at times but sometimes it felt good! like when I stole a hooker from a Pimp and gave her a better life in a pokécenter whose Nurse Joy was fed up with it all. It felt wrong.. but also right! I was so happy I was a male trainer.. because this guy was not me! He was someone else.. that became my most important rule in this game and I would need it for the story that was to come.

Pokémon Fire Red: Rocket Edition follows the story of Red and how he stops Team Rocket and Giovanni’s scheme to take control of Kanto and the Pokémon Mewtwo. Yet we do not follow it through the eyes of Red.. we follow it through the eyes of Pinkie who is not me! Fresh off the boat we get send to Mount Moon to obtain some fossils when the group gets stopped in their tracks by a Spikey Haired kid with a Wartortle and an even stronger kid with a cap and Charmeleon. We then get to meet Giovanni for the first time who wonders why these two kids have War-Pokémon. We then realise something.. the world Red sees is not the actual world. It’s the world through the eyes of a kid the actual world is much more dystopian. Bill, Oak, Blaine, Surge, Koga heck even that old guy with back troubles in Viridian city.. everyone has secrets but they would never tell that to a kid. The kid would not be able to comprehend… He also never really speaks to asks questions he is just a good boy to Oak.

It doesn’t take long for us to meet Bill. Apparently Blaine had been making Porygon for Team Rocket.. as a way to provide them with income..having an infinite supply of porygon for their game corner ..so people waste their cash for such a rare but secretly not so rare pokémon.
Since Blaine is to scared to help the crime organization we have to ask Bill.. bribing him with some goodies which include two tickets aboard the S.S. Anne Cruise. He doesn’t like that gift ..but he likes the other stuff we give him so it’s all good. We also sell trade steroids to LT Surge so we can use the SS Anne to smuggle Pokémon.. stuff like that. Yet we discover there is more about Team Rocket than we originally thought. They are not just criminals.. they want an Independent Kanto. We find out that Kanto lost the great war to Johto and it’s general Lance has taken over from the Elite Four of Kanto. Oak, Fuji, Giovanni.. and Shingeki.. or something.. a name I keep forgetting and that doesn’t come into play until much much later.  During the war these were involved to create the ultimate weapon. A Pokémon that could destroy Lance.. based on the DNA of Mew.. codename Mewtwo.

I will not spoil the story any further but for those interested in finding out I am more than willing  to spoil on demand, let me just say that the story of this game is quite amazing. It utilizes so many fan theories along side with later made revelations. We see how Silver became the douche he is in Pokémon Gold and Silver, seeing the toxic relationship with his father Giovanni and his mother Arianna. We see the man Giovanni and his convictions to bring back the Kanto he once loved through extreme measures. We even see the dark side of Professor Oak. No one in the Pokémon World is a saint. The team Oak had in Blue and Red that got scrapped but still was in the code..comes into play here. We see Oak use these pokémon. We see why  characters walked away from the Mewtwo project and we even see what link that old man in Viridian city has with the creature on the east coast of Cinnabar island. There is so much lore here, it is very impressive.

The game offers some interesting new mechanics. Due to how easy it is to steal Pokémon, managing your team is quite a bit harder. We get less XP , Less Money and more Pokémon.. as a Rocket it doesn’t take long to feel like we are behind the curve in levels.. to reflect your status as a Rocket.. we may be able to beat trainers but it’s a lot harder for us than it was for Red.  There is a promotion system that actively changes our sprite as we move from Grunt to Executive to Admin and even beyond. 

Ranking up allows us to steal pokémon from a wider pool of trainers. Like Teens and girls when we become an executive, males when we become an Admin.. and eventually we can even steal from Gym Leaders and Elite Four members. Yet there is always an upside and a downside to things. Steal a Pokémon from a Gym Leader and you do not get a Technical Machine. Get a high enough bounty and team rocket will reward you with powerful battle items like a life orb, or a kings rock. Keep your record clean long enough and the police might reward you with an Exp Share, A lucky egg or powerful moves.

So there are several ways of power, the Rocket way allows you to battle more viciously while the good way makes the game a bit easier.. as if you where playing an actual normal main character.  It is also interesting how the world acts around a character that in the original game would be considered an “npc”. You can not get the coin case you normally get because that is meant for Red.. people do not want to give it to a Rocket Criminal. People rip on Surge gym puzzle because when you are not a kid you realise how stupid that particular puzzle is.  We see how people interact with you while you do not have a trainer passport.

We do not have a pokédex either so our inventory feels so weird. As a result this game feels so unique yet so familiar and right. A lot of thought went into this and while the plot really delves deep into fanfiction and fan theory .. every piece of dialogue and every option you have fits into that.. they even go as far as to explain why mechanics in the original games worked like they did.. stupid little things you never wondered about suddenly fall into place. To a certain extend even going as far as to explain why Samuel doesn’t know his grandson’s name.

This game is such an easy recommendation to anyone who loves the franchise but thinks it’s just a bit to kiddy and to lighthearted. It’s great for anyone who thinks Pokémon is just a bit to easy. It’s amazing to everyone who at least knows the story of the first generation a bit basically. It’s infinitely better if you read some theories though, Missing No for example is a story element, if you at least know how to get it things will resonate more strongly.  If you noticed that Blue suddenly stopped Raticate in his team and afterwards he can be found in Lavender city.. things will immediately click.. it’s faith has always been a popular theory but here you finally get the talk from the other side. We see why Blue is so bitter and why he eventually becomes the Viridian Gym Leader. There is so much to experience..and for an amateur it’s just .. a simple more mature version of pokémon with a crime mechanic.. for those who know Kanto trough and trough.. this is the ultimate fan fiction experience.

The strongest point is the story, but also the gameplay has been updated. Even though it’s fire Red.. all the 18 typings, including fairy types and new movesets exist. So they even dealt with my biggest gripe, having to remember old systems. Special Attack and defence is split,  moves can hit physical and specially regardless of their type and all those things have been brought into pokémon as we know it. Add a backstory in the veins of.. Pokémon as we  suspect it was.. and a twist story that reveals the existence of a counterpart of Mewtwo and these are a few hours well spend to anyone who either watched the first pokémon movie or played the first game. The more you know about Pokémon the more there is to love!  I had a blast! Even if my character ended up in jail for 46 years!  That’s a good thing.. he was a bad man.. and definitely not me! He got what he deserved.. and with this game. .as a fan I got what I deserved too!

This game is such an easy recommendation to anyone who loves the franchise but thinks it’s just a bit to kiddy and to lighthearted. It’s great for anyone who thinks Pokémon is just a bit to easy. It’s amazing to everyone who at least knows the story of the first generation a bit basically. It’s infinitely better if you read some theories though, Missing No for example is a story element, if you at least know how to get it things will resonate more strongly.  If you noticed that Blue suddenly stopped Raticate in his team and afterwards he can be found in Lavender city.. things will immediately click.. it’s faith has always been a popular theory but here you finally get the talk from the other side. We see why Blue is so bitter and why he eventually becomes the Viridian Gym Leader.

There is so much to experience..and for an amateur it’s just .. a simple more mature version of pokémon with a crime mechanic.. for those who know Kanto trough and trough.. this is the ultimate fan fiction experience. While strongest point is the story, but also the gameplay has been updated. Even though it’s Fire Red.. all the 18 typings, including fairy types and new movesets exist. So they even dealt with my biggest gripe, having to remember old systems. Special Attack and defence is split,  moves can hit physical and specially regardless of their type and all those things have been brought into pokémon as we know it.

This game is us!.. Pokémon as we  suspect it was.. and a twist story that reveals the existence of a counterpart of Mewtwo and much more! These are a few hours well spend to anyone who either watched the first pokémon movie or played the first game. The more you know about Pokémon the more there is to love!  I had a blast! Even if my character ended up in jail for 46 years!  That’s a good thing.. he was a bad man.. and definitely not me! He got what he deserved.. and with this game. .as a fan I got what I deserved too!

I got everything I expected and so much more! There are some glitches..but for what this is I could not expect more!

I would like to thank you all for reading! Feel free to ask questions about the game if you are interested! Or tell me your experience with in the comments. Did you feel as badly as I did when you stole pokémon?! Do you not like to steal? Do you prefer to reverse steal?! Well have I got good news for you! I have a Ko-Fi thingamajig! Just saying! Not robbing you here!

This is now a button!

Pokémon can be Anime Girls too!

In my previous blog I tried I tried to add some depth to this blog by telling you about my beliefs and go a bit philosophical. Since I aim to mostly be kawaii and endearing though I gotta bring some cuteness to this place as well. Hopefully this title already drew you in .. because it is absolutely true! Pokémon can be anime girls too! The fusion between these things is a phenomenon called Moemon!

I want to be Kawaii-Desu
Like no one ever was!

Welcome to the wonderful world of rom-hacking, where goku can be in a pokémon game! For many years people have added their favorite things into the world of pokémon! Like candies, memes and fusions. Yet of course only the most briljant of minds have come up with the ultimate idea. We made guns and warships into anime girls, we made soda cans into anime girls and even bowser. If we can try to wrinkle our sheets with Soda surely some underaged pokémon cosplayers should be possible right?! YES!

In the world of Moemon you catch little girls in your balls and command them to do whatever you want. I am sure this idea will please some of my readers but me myself I mostly like it because it is super cute. All the girls have adorable outfits and it is just a treat to find your new cute anime girls and make them do battle. There is something about a cute maid girl using rest that I just find much more charming than an actual Snorlax using it. Also my brain works over time. What if Ash got a Moe instead of regular Pikachu? Some scenes clearly would have to be rewritten. The ketchup thing would hold up nicely though! Bye Bye Butterfree would suddenly have some clear Yuri implications so I do see this show really working!

It’s a Shoujo World we live in.
TUTUTUTUTU

Now Moemon is not just a pokémon fan game it’s a phenomenon a series of hacks that still get better and regularly receive updates. The most complete version you can play and the most commonly found around the web is the Fire-Red rom hack. In this day and age it has added new moves, it added the fairy typing (which only existed after Kalos.. thus not in most playable rom hacks)  and even adds some Mega evolution Moe to the mix. Kawaii! However this is also the only one that is currently not optimised for randomisation. For those who don’t know what I mean.. there are little programs you download that reshuffle your pokédex order in some shape way or form so you don’t always have to pick from Bulbasaur, Squirtle and Charmander in the beginning, it might be randomised to anything.

It can also randomise, field encounters, static encounters and even pokemon trainers use…as well as items , trainer names, their sprites and more So who knows.. instead of a pidgey you might encounter a Mewtwo. You just run a rom through your randomiser, pick some settings you like and ponf! It spits out a new rom! For the moe surprise effect I really would recommend playing a randomised version.

(Giggity)

Luckily Moemon is also available for Pokémon Platinum, Pokémon Heartgold and Pokémon Emerald. These can be randomised for the most crazy shoujo experience you ever had. I might do a Emerald Randomiser Moemon Nuzlocke slow blog at one point if you people would be up for it! I really don’t want to walk across Kanto anymore for a while. Johto or Hoenn I would be fine with! Unfortunately these games are not that easy to download. It requires patching some roms fiddling with emulators and applying a randomiser yourself. It’s all fairly easy stuff but you need some help of our good friend google to actually get it right. I am really terrible with these kinds of things for some reason so if I ever do that let’s play thingy don’t shoot me if something completely glitches out!

I wanna be a Moe!
MOEMON ADVANCED

Unfortunately Moemon .. as for right now at least, is not a lot more than a sprite swap. Which means that the story is exactly the same as in the original games. Moe’s are still referred to as Pokémon and no dialogue or trainer models have been replaced.  While the fire red version has received modern updates and features the fairy typing , altered stats , mega evolutions and the likes you still fight Giovanni and Lance.. and of course that guy with the really good knows that always keeps smelling you later.

Trough yet another mod you can install onto the game you can replace Moe Umbreon and Moe Espeon by Moe versions of Glaceon and Sylveon respectively that is where the changes end. I would love to see a game that features Moe in the story and perhaps a certified trainer sprite. Instead of Giovanni maybe we can fight Brock.. who has plans to …. well everyone who saw a few episodes of the series can fill this in.  You know I would like a Moemon world.

That being said however there is still plenty to love when just playing for the sprites. They are all so cute and there has gone a lot of effort and work into these.  Which is why I vastly prefer to play Emerald or Heart Gold.. . there are more Moe’s to catch and with the randomiser you never know what will show up where. Lapras on the starting route? Pidgey on Steven’s team.. depending on how you randomise it can all happen in a bonkers little adventure that has never looked cuter. The Moe’s all look soooooo good. I haven’t encountered a single ugly one! Now I kind of would like to play Heartgold Moe because there is even more monsters for me to find but it is the hardest one to mod! Not sure if I will be able to make it work!

Diamond-Senpai and Pearl-Chan

Moemon is a passion project and it shows from how many versions there actually are. Most games have their own separate sprites for their Moe’s so maybe the Charizard from Heart Gold is just a bit more tsun looking while the one in Fire Red might be more adorable. It shows the gargantuan amount of work that went into this project and makes it fun to play all the games because everything is their own thing.

Sprites are improved upon, so the next time you return to the same game it might look different as well. It has a fairly healthy, or at least alive, community. They keep creators keep plenty of variety in their moes as well. Of course the basic and stage 1 moemon look younger than a stage 2 as it should be and overall you can really feel the hard work  of everyone involved.

While Moemon might not be the most interesting Romhack in terms of gameplay it at least knows how to not mess with a classic. The games are the original so they are nice and easy and you can breeze through without too much trouble. Which is perfect for a game about Moe girls pretending to be pokémon. We don’t really care about the gameplay of those lewdable ship games either, so this should not be an exception either. It’s about cuteness and great pixel art.

It’s about how Pokémon can be cute girls too .. instead of flower-frogs or sleeping bear like things. Snorlax can now choose to be a nun!  So many of these sprites are such nice and lovely designs and I want to cosplay them all! Unfortunately as a dutchie I am fairly tall so I need to find a way to shrink myself down first. Anyway I am sure to embark on a journey with Pika-Kun and Voir-Senpai soon! I do hope i can share this journey with you but whatever you do .. never lewd MY moes!

Review: Pokémon Snakewood

Hey big reader people, it’s finally time for me to play games again.. and I played a very special game for Halloween. A pokémon game that is set in Hoenn… that has suffered through a zombie apocalypse. Along the way not only do you fight zombies and zombie pokémon but ghosts and demons as well.  So I prepared for horror .. but nothing prepared me for Pokémon Snakewood. 

Nasty Plot

Pokémon Snakewood starts out promising. Your character wakes up with no memories in a completely destroyed Littleroot Town. Among the wreckage of Professor Birch lab, you find three pokéballs. A Koffing, A Baltoy or a Paras, I knew this game was about zombies so I thought.. they are probably using poison thingies a lot! Let’s pick Koffing! I named it Orby back then.. but later on I would rename it Chokes. Apparently I play the younger sister of Brandon…but he is named Landon here. The game is set just a few years after his winning the pokémon league. Landon has vanished alongside his girlfriend May (awww I am so glad they got together)  and it’s up to you the protagonist to find him again, assisted by professor Birch who wants his daughter back safe. Landon being the champion can surely help against his invasion of the undead. Along the way the protagonist finds out they have a much bigger role to play in this story as they originally thought.

Now this in theory would sound like a story I can get behind, unfortunately after reaching Rustboro town, the original location of the first gym, the story starts to fall apart. It’s still okay by then.. but the first cracks begin to show. The Romhacker Cutlerine uses a lot of humor and fourth wall breaks , which is honestly something I normally love. The plot has a lot of random elements and Seth-MacFarlane-esque humor and storytelling. Again these are things I kinda love! This is coming from a girl who had a good time with A Million Ways to die in the West. While inspired by McFarlane  Cutlerine misses two crucial elements to the golden formula. Restraint and timing. The plot of Snakewood is atrociously bad, filled with very obscure references weird in jokes and poorly timed twists. Basically you have an Ally for one or two cities , after which they stab you in the back, and this loops over and over again. The zombie killing guy?! (While obvious) He’s an enemy.. those who convince you he is a bad guy.. they throw you under a bus, then you find yet another party.. but find out they can’t help that much.. after which you find out that enemy you had on Dewford Island.. no that’s a friend! A good plot twist isn’t bad here and there.. but here it happens in every town give or take. In the end we end up with people frozen into a carbonite chamber, while the evil guy bakes you a cake.. totally destroying the world, after which you have to defeat him with the power of Haiku and References end it ends with a party in your honour.. that gets skipped for some limp endgame content. 

If written with timing and restraint this could have worked still but instead this all is resolved through fourth wall breaks. ‘Oh they are frozen in carbonite looks like Cuterline isn’t even trying anymore’ ‘Oh this happens, that sure is convenient to the plot’. The main character is aware of the bad story and comments on it, which can at times be funny but at the same time the story has no narrative impact as there is no logic connected to how the plot will go. You even face the Elite four somewhere in the first half  of the final act. There is a very big chunk of the game left after that, and that bit seems to fizzle out quite badly.

Mean Look

Technically this game doesn’t far much better, the female protagonist sprite glitches constantly, turning from a normal human into a pale grey, or sometimes even other shades. When diving the sprite of May  and not the protagonist is there. It makes the game feel sloppy. While I give the hacker credit for creating a lot of custom maps, with some of them being neat improvements.. others feel lackluster, usually in the more optional parts. We encounter stuff like invisible walls , which sometime are there  as part of a puzzle but sometimes are just there for cutting you off and sometimes even exist as glitches. at totally random spots that aren’t hidden items. It just feels so sloppy, and I know fangames and rom hacks are prone to this but I am not comparing it to the main titles I am comparing this to other hacks and these errors are way more present than in for example Pokémon Sweet Version or Pokémon Clover.

There is little new sound design, which is detrimental to the tone of the game again. A destroyed Littleroot town should not have the Littleroot town theme, while it is hard to implement this .. again other Rom Hacks have managed to do so and this one could have benefitted from it a lot. In the last part of the game there is some swap arounds but never truly great. I ended up muting the music in the end , but more on that when we discuss the gameplay. Sound design is not bad as in it’s not entirely detrimental to the experience nor does it glitch or is ugly but it is very clear the team of the Cutlerine lacked a sound designer making the hack feel more amateurish. Nothing to bad but I’ve seen a lot better .. and just adding some horror music would have done sooo much for this game. 

The game also has some Fakemon , custom made pokémon and some are actually great. The zombified pokémon all look great. Yuck.. the pokémon that looks like Muk.. but swallowing a little child was absolutely amazing.  The reskins of the kantonian starters.. excellent work. Latios and Latias stitched together bravo. These are really well done.
Then they decided to add in their own custom pokémon and they all look horrible. Like absolutely horrible. I can not do better because I am not a drawing person, but I could conceptualise cooler ones and get an artist to make some well within the time that it took me to finish this game. Nearly 50% of it is like a singularly shape pokemon.. like a rock.. or most commonly circles or an egg. Evolutions are quite lazily designed though compliments to Dragooon and Diamantix , respectively evolutions of Linoone and Steelix.. the sprites look like doodoo but at least conceptually you can sorta make out what they were going for which seemed interesting.. but otherwise most of their pokemon evolve by changing colour.. or becoming a circle. Bleh.

Spite

All in all we don’t have a very solid game just yet.. but it is an intriguing one so maybe some good gameplay can rescue it?! I can quite honestly say that gameplay wise this is the single most AWFUL pokémon game I EVER played. It’s honestly quite atrocious. Once again the first third  of the game feels solid enough. Challenging as but solid. I made the mistake of starting with a skitty as my second pokémon, I had to trade that in fairly quickly when I found a makuhita. The pokémon battle gameplay is solid throughout the first half of the game. Puzzles however are broken from the very first moment we encounter them. They are .. again Family Guy inspired or something .. because they are completely random.
Example one :  ‘I invaded an enemy based and the floor is laced with pressure sensors.. meaning if you step onto the wrong tile, you get reset back to the beginning of this area’ Now this would be manageable, because you only have three options every time, so for about 10 to 20 tiles of traversal this is doable.  However this game decided it was FUNNY to stretch it out for over at about 90 or so tiles. With characters that you have to use (south straight from the last  in a gauntlet of them) to navigate.. glitching in and out of existence, this process is truly hellish.

Example 2: A series of completely random, unanswerable questions (Is fire better than octopus?) wil reset you back to the entire line of questions for every wrong answer. About 30 gates that on first try have about a 50/50 chance to reset your progress. Of course after which you get a reward chest…. that resets you anyway so you also have to know to skip that. Powering an elevator.. can’t use your electric pokémon for that.. you have to catch a very specific one that can be found inside this dungeon, track back (As by now you will have 6 pokémon)  get that pokemon out of the pc.. to power the elevator.. .. catch a ditto so that it can turn into a key.. which afterwards it never can anymore. This would even be okay if you did not already visit this dungeon once where the puzzle solution was a simple item hunt thus forcing you into that mindset. Finally there is also a very particular teleporter puzzle, that if you choose wrong.. will put you in a no win scenario fight..unless you cheated by then.. which losing will put you outside the entire dungeon. And yes.. it’s that 70 tile memory game one where this occurs. 

Being a rom hack this game is meant to be emulated and sped up, save states made to clear these puzzles and so on. The puzzles are virtually impossible otherwise. Never did I have to look up a walkthrough on a pokémon game nor hack to progress through the game as my goal always made sense to me.. here I had to look it up 7 times.  There is a part where you have to find a Hard Rock CD and put it on a stone.. of course the only place to find this cd is on a Rock Lobster.. that is hiding out in a SINGLE dive tile, no where near the area I need to be in. And this is MISSABLE! If you killed the Rock Lobster.. as far as my research goes.. you can not truely finish the game, even if this is technically endgame. Other story mandatory puzzles involve talking to a random girl to give you an item, flying to another town to get some food, Red Stew and feed it to a mirror.. because something something bible reference. It doesn’t even tell you , you need to find the Red Stew,having it in your inventory will cause one of the dialogue options to have a different outcome, so you cant even deduce you are actually missing an item.  There is a joke inside there somewhere but if you don’t get it.. you do not get the puzzle. 

Finally there is  the battling and the grind… oh dear Arceus the grind. Endgame requires your pokemon to be somewhere in the level 75 area. Using speed up to level I clocked about 120 hours to finish this game.  Which means that is about 120 hours worth of grinding.
And I haven’t even leveled much more than my actual chosen 6.. I could have picked up some stronger pokémon with a guide and used legendaries.. but  I wanted to see if this could be done with regulars.. and one legendary because I worked very hard on that. Early in the game you get an egg… it hatches into a MYSTERYEGG, .. which is an egg.. i figured a legendary would be in here.. so i leveled it up until it evolved into SECRETEGG.. I was close to making it evolve just one more stage.. and it evolved into HYPEREGG. Never has a pokemon been able to evolve beyond their second evolution stage.. but HYPEREGG can, I found out by accident because yet again.. trainers intuition would tell you.. this is it. Most pokémon you are handed are sub par to deal with the enemies completely overpowered beasts… there even is a lvl 100 Kamina (yes the one from Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann)   and a lvl 65 , non 1 hp , wonder guard pokemon that I could only hit with toxic. It just made every minute of the second half of this game feel so tedious and frustrating..I wanted to pull my hair out and banish this game to my trash can. Yet I wanted to beat it and I did… and I was rewarded with nothing… no credits.. no nothing.. my char wants to discover herself still.. but that I did before the rest.. so I never really got any payoff.
*Curse Words*

Smelling Salts

I am so salty right now.. that the game ended like that… I put in the time and the work and got nothing in return.. so my judgement is very biassed.  Did I objectively enjoy this game? No.. but the first half was kinda nice just glitchy.. the second half was hell. There is way too much insider humor in it , including an entire act based around what I would assume is another game they made, that sounds kinda like a mix between Devil Survivor 2 and Digimon, the references are often to obscure.. like who of us has read the book of Genesis?  I sure did not! While it has potential it also manages to strangle that same potential completely by catering to a very specific group of people throughout the entire hack, essentially nullifying their biggest boon, their humor only leaving the cool zombie theme as their other.. and who wants to play a zombie game that ends up with Carbonite trapped prisoners and Haiku rap battle final encounters…  I am pretty sure it’s no one…and that is the same amount of people I would recommend this game too.

While this rom enjoys some popularity, that seems to stem from the first half of the game.. which is good and worth a look, however as soon as Mauville city is passed this game plummets like a brick into my most hated game so far. I even had to stop playing multiple times in order to collect myself so I could finish it another day. Be smart and stay clear of this one, at least if you are looking for an actually decent game..for the Family Guy experience go ahead… but just watch Family Guy.

The Pinkest Poké Blogger is blasting off again!
XO
Pinkie 

Review: Pokémon Sweet Version

Now Pokémon is already a pretty cutsie franchise. Of course there are some though ferocious beasts to deal with as well and quite a few world ending schemes to be had but overall we can still say a majority of our pocket monster pals can be deemed cute.  Now what if we told you this cuteness can be put in overdrive? A game so sweet hat 9 out of 10 dentist recommend that you do not play this game. Chibi Pinki’s teeth might have rotted away.. she can’t stop smiling! It’s time to review Pokémon Sweet version.

The Concept

This game is sooo fun! It’s like super cute and amazing and sweet, but it’s also a bit tricky to get.  You see Pokémon Sweet version is a Romhack.. that means it used to be a rom for a gameboy emulator and some pretty nifty egghead people changed it around into a new game. Kinda like how you would find a person you like well enough but are a bit tired off.. then peel off all their flesh leaving just their vital systems intact and then building a new person from it..but less bloody. So it means you have to download an emulator and the rom. If you are unlucky you’d have to download an emulator , the original rom and a patch file taking you about 10 to 15 minutes or so. That’s longer than my attention span. 

(Hehe I got Blue Balls)

Anyway in Pokémon Sweet version.. which is free to play,  you travel to CandyLand, where roads are made out of fudge and the grass is not covered with dew but with frosting. Instead of trees cupcakes will grow and instead of fences people use candy canes. You live in rural Cookie Village where the road has been eaten by a woman. Because you are bored you decided to walk inside Professor Cinna’s lab, who was wanting to give her three apprentices a so called pokésweet. Yet one of them overslept.. your friend and rival ‘placeholder name Garysprite’ so she decides to give you a pokésweet instead.  Pokésweets are like pokémon..but sweeter they like to be eaten and grow back after they do. You can choose from Brownisaur the Cherry and Chocolate flavoured brownie, Strawmander the strawberry headed and tailed lizard and Squirpie the apple pie with a turtle body. Alongside your Pokésweet you are sent on a mission to catch all the other sweets to complete the cookbook for the good professor. Meanwhile you can obtain some gym badges from other pokésweet users so you can compete to be the pokésweet champion housed at Cake Castle. Pretty sweet right?

Well not everything is great in the land of Candyland! An evil team named Team Sour is after the secret of rare candies and wants to manipulate the two deities of the land , who happen to be two chocolate bunnies, to get their evil ways. It is up to your to salvage the rare candies and save Chocobun and Dark Chocobun.. the last one is like Chocobun but edgier. Team Sour is not the only obstacle in your way though, there is also the dreaded Candy Pirates who want all the pokésweets for themselves and their pink little outfits. Instead of pokémon typings each pokésweet has flavours, including but not limited too, vanilla chocolat , blueberry lime and orange! As flavours clash you’ll have to create a good enough flavor profile to overcome even the toughest of trainers, while harder than the original fire red.. victory in this game is double as sweet

The Atmosphere 

While Candyland is basicly Kanto but from Candy one would suspect a bit of a lazy copy past but nothing is further from the truth. This game is such a treat to play. With a lot of attention to detail. There’s about 150ish pokésweets but rather than the original 150 it takes pokémon from all across the first five generations to create the ultimate sweets. A lot of moves have been renamed , retyped and refitted to pokémon for optimal enjoyment. Instead of Snorlax knowing Rest and Snore.. we get Smorelax.. the marshmallow pokésweet that restores his health by using Zest, and while it sleeps it can use the move S’more to harm his foes. Strawizard learns to use Fruit Punch and Squirt Pie can use Apple Toss.  While a Pokésweet can still get burned , fall asleep or be paralysed they would not go poisonous as it would harm the flavour of the world. Instead a Pokésweet can go hungry and will begin to nom itself.

There is no ocean to swim on.. instead the sea is replaced by cream.. the lakes are filled with grape juice. Not a single element is out of place in Pokémon Sweet version. The number of items has been drastically reduced, most of the unnatural stuff is gone, replaced by extra rare candies, lemonades and berries. Berries can be used in the regular way to heal status or health.. but they can also be used to BAKE new Pokésweets. That’s right some Pokesweets you can only obtain by gathering the right ingredients and baking one. Every single cookbook entry has been customly made and they are all adorable!
Spinacake for example spins vanilla cake for unwilling visitors. Piestoise  has grown candy cane cannons which it uses to fire muffins at his opponents to make them happy again.Chocowool loves hugs.. but when you hug it it can leave blobs of chocolate on your clothes.
It’s all just how it should be. Very sweet!

The people are loving and helpful and help to flesh out this quirky world out greatly.  The custom soundtrack can be a bit repetitive. The Mario Kart Snes music plays a bit too oftenly.. but I kinda like it. It makes the journey feel cute rather than epic and that is exactly what it should aim for. At times you feel it has been made by a small team and they went like… just fit this in here and it’s going to be fine but that is perfectly understandable and excusable for a romhack. I’ve seen rom hacks break down regions and completely building their own.. but such a journey was never these guys ambition nor would it have worked this well. This game is so different that the safety of where to go next felt like a warm blanket. This game is about the pokésweets and gathering them.. not to tell a compelling and grand  tale. Team Sour and Candy Pirates! This game knows what it is and what its want you to do… and it does that very well and in it’s very own charming way.

Technical Thingies

Now Rom Hacks are a bit different when it comes down to judging the technical thingies. They are not professional games, but unlike fully created custom games the skeleton is there so there should not be to much errors there in the first place anyway.  Yet at the same time because it’s not their own code .. things can conflict much easier. Overall I’d say Sweet Version does a great job. The flavor system ..which is way more than just a name swap from the other games (as there’s only 12 flavors) and all weaknesses are custom. For example Banana and Lemon are weak to each other, which we’ve never seen in a regular pokémon game. The game feels mostly balanced though the chocolate type is quite powerful and the orange flavour has quite a few weaknesses. I am not sorry how the balance is as I can not play with every little sweet and the type chart is a bit more ungraspable than the typing chart.

I can imagine why water beats fire.. or how grass beats water. Deducing why Apple beat Orange or why raspberry beats blueberry is  somewhat less natural. As a result the sense of balance is gone a bit.. but I do not mean that in a bad way…it’s like pokémon battling without the training wheels. The game definitely spiced up in terms of difficulty but in a good way. Trainers who stick to one pokésweet will usually outlevel you if you commit to a entire team. This make sense because in a way it enforces the rules of the game on the npc’s. Solid design but it does mean you’ll need a bunch of items or a lots of trips to the pokésweet center. Baking the Pokésweets works perfectly which are new mechanics they build in.. now you get locked into a gym and have to finish it in one go works like a charm and all those little things work wonders. Dialogue however has a few oversights. Quite a few trainers have their old dialogue intact. Mostly the one you never really notice unless you talk to them after combatting. But because this world is so new I talked to them all.. and I noticed quite a few of them slipped up and broke the suspense of disbelief. Some stores are a bit glitchy because items have been added or removed. Since emulation can already result in a few glitches I am not sure what I can and can’t blame on them so since it’s nothing that stops me from playing or even hinders me I don’t mind it too much. It just looks a bit sloppy. Like a bit of whip cream spilling out of  desert. Still tastes good even if it doesn’t look like it’s supposed too.

The Gameplay

Delicious as this game might be, it is not for the faint of heart. Pokémon Sweet version is pretty hard. I try to spend as little money on items as i possibly could but in Sweet version I carry a lot of medicine on me because the game wants me too. Not only do we get locked inside gyms and whiting out  means repeating ALL the trainers also the moves we work with are drastically reduced. Pokésweets are less offensive than Pokémon, they have limited good attacks. Instead nearly every sweet gets access to status inducing moves. Nearly every trainer battle is also a double battle, meaning you have to be prepared for two types or even two attacks onto a single sweet. With all that cream filling flying about I guess hitting moves is a lot harder as well because accuracy has proven to be quite a bit more of an issue. Not only can you toss sprinkles in your opponents eyes to make them less accurate, a lot of the 100% hitting moves are simply gone for more risky moves. This means you have to think a lot more about your actions and that’s good. 

I enjoyed this battle system so much, reminding me more of classic rpgs where you rarely get a new attack other then a support type move here and there. I love how they changed obstacles around though. HM’s are as good as gone with only fly and surf still existing, though these other obstacles are all non consequential the no hm method allows us to be so much more free in what sweets we carry along. Gym’s are infinitely repeatable making grinding up levels a breeze as long as we skip those with annoying gym puzzles like the Blueberry gym. When I say skip I mean for the grind of course you have to complete it once. The game has been thusly altered that you can basically complete the entire cookbook yourself. All starters will become available and there are no trade evolutions. I still have to discover how to evolve some of these but it’s just a delight to see your babies grow up and read all their adorable pages. The plethora of status can be a bit annoying when you start but these are pokésweets not pokémon.. they don’t like attacking so it’s something you will just have to get used to. It’s different.. not worse..as long as you carry medicine at least.


It’s a long game, longer than the same run would take you in Pokémon Fire Red (the rom it’s based on), a lot longer. Pokésweets are super cute and you will be very tempted to try them all out the way they designed the game also means that you actually get better things to put on your team as you get along. Some sweets will get outdated  or outclassed or just outlived. You’ll need to level quite a bit more than in the legitimate game but you’ll be given plenty of options for it as well. So while it does require some effort of you as a player this game features enough content to sink your teeth into.

The Verdict

Okay this game will not be a 10 out of 10 but it’s definitely something special. It’s something we will NEVER EVER see again and it’s something I have never seen before it. While other Rom Hacks change the game.. in some cases better than this little game, Pokémon Sweet version reinvents the entire concept. Recognisable to  keep the old charm while innovating enough to add a whole lot of sweetness. I can not in good conscious gave a game as cute as this where you walk onto a pink world anything lower than my highest ranking! This game is my soul emulated. Feel free to disagree .. but this game is sweet.

What do you think about Pokémon Sweet Version? Did you ever play a rom hack? Do you have any suggestion for me to play? Let me know in the comments and I will see you all in the next post!

The Pinkest Poké Blogger is blasting off again!
XO
Pinkie