*days may or may not be concurrent.
Lets face it during the mid 90’s Nintendo was not doing so hot. The N64 was not were Nintendo would of liked it to be. Sony was killing them in sales and a lot of 3rd parties where jumping ship to the Playstation. Things were looking grim. However there was one huge big shinning light that came out of no where and caught the whole world by storm and it would be remiss to talk about the great Game Boy games without even taking a look at this game.
I always felt like I was too old for Pokémon, I would have been 16 by the time the games out down here & lets face it the common outlook by most people was that Pokémon was for kids. Then again I’ve always felt like I’m a huge kid who never grew up. So yes I did watch the Pokémon cartoon when it came out, but that was more because I had heard of Pokémon before I saw it and it was made by Nintendo. Yes I am that much of a fanboy in that I watched the cartoon series only because it was made by Nintendo (cause lets face it their track record with cartoons was stellar up until that point Captain N the Game Master).
I heard about Pokémon I think a year or so before the series came out in Australia. A UK N64 mag was showcasing some Japan Nintendo event (either TGS or maybe Space World) there where pictures of these strange looking creatures, I had no idea what they were but they were everywhere it seemed. Then the Pokémon bomb hit and it was all over from there, the world was caught up in Pokefever. So the cartoon comes out, hooks kids on the concept of the show and the great slogan “Gotta catch them all” and oh by the way if you love the cartoon heres this awesome little game you can play. I was cool with that, its smart marketing, but then everything else came out. The card game, the merchandising hell I'm sure I even saw a series of battling marbles you could buy. However it was all very smart marketing, Nintendo made an assload of cash of this thing and still do. For all the hate the series seems to get, Nintendo has been very smart with the way they have marketed it.
So yeah as I said I started playing the game during all of this, the way I went about it was just focus on the games and lock everything else out. For what it was the game was a really solid game, plus you look at the sheer size of the game there was nothing as big as Pokemon on the Game Boy when Pokemon came out., the game was freaken huge. You'd think just being a Game Boy game it would be nice and simple, hell no, the game is surprisingly deep. When you look at it 151 different Pokemon each with their own move sets, stats and then you add in the 10 different types plus you can have a party of 6 at a time the amount of strategy and depth that can go into making a team is huge. I'd say its one of the most complex RPG systems I've ever seen. Yet just because its targeted at children people won't give it a chance, they see it as something below them, something for the kids.
So yeah I got Blue in 1998 when it came out (around about the same time I got my Game Boy Colour in fact), why Blue, its my fav colour. Starter Pokemon was of course my all time fav Bulbasaur, he just looks soo awesome. Played it up until the 3rd Gym I think & then my brother picked up Pokemon Red so I restarted my game and then we spent a whole day having my brother just restarting his game over and over so we could both have a full team of all the 3 starters. Then it was a race to see who could amass the best team first and beat the game. I think he beat the elite 4 first but I was 16 and in High School and had lots of other stuff to worry about at the time. But end of the day I beat the game, got all 151 Pokemon when they had an event in my city to get Mew.
I can remember playing the game and the excitement of catching a new Pokemon or having one of your current ones evolve to something completely new and different. Back then it was an age of wonder, it was pre internet for me so I didn't know what new moves I would get or what Poliwhirl would turn into. Or when I came across a legendary Pokemon and would try and be soo careful not to kill the thing so I could catch it or miss out on my chance forever. Playing Blue now it does feel dated compared to the later games. Theres no Day/Night cycle, moving around takes forever and just seems sooo slow. Theres no breeding, theres only 151 (having said that you could also say that those 151 are the best out of the whole Pokemon series). It may be hard to play now but when I think back to my first play through of it I was blown away by it.
Looking at my old game of it now I spent 136 hours in the game which is not a lot when I know there are people out there who leveled everything up to 100 and devoted their lives to the game. But I think I got the most out of it. It was a great game and a game that is almost as important as something like Super Mario Bros 1. The only sad thing is everything that came after it, Yu Gi Oh, Beyblades and so on. It was original when Nintendo pulled it off but now that every company needs to have their own Pokemon its just getting old. Having said that Pokemon has continued on over the years going from strength to strength its lasted the distance and its gonna last a hell of a lot longer. If only Nintendo would give me that Pokemon MMORPG I want soo damn much.
OH NOES ITS TEAM ROCKET