Review: Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Red & Blue Rescue Team

Game Boy Advance/Nintendo DS

Rating: 9

October 30, 2006

Definitely not your usual Pokémon game

Introduction
Chunsoft has been the creator of many Fushigi no Dungeon (or Mystery Dungeon) games for over 10 years. This is one of the many versions of the game that exist and was actually released in English. It is totally different than any other Pokémon games. Read on...

Story: 10/10 What if one day you woke up as a Pokémon?
Exactly as the quote above says, you wake up one day as a Pokémon. You start out wondering why you have been turned into a Pokémon. The quest is to find out the answer to this question. To get there, you must do rescue missions and help out others in need. It's a pretty good story, different than any other Pokémon game.

Gameplay: 10/10 Over 50 dungeons and 50 hours!
This game will keep you hooked. As you have 386 Pokémon to recruit, INFINITE Pokémon to save, and an interesting story, this game could easily take between 50 and 200 hours to complete! Like Animal Crossing, each "day" you get new missions. Unlike Animal Crossing, it isn't real time. After completing any number of missions simultaneously, you can save and it'll be a new day. Speaking of saving, you can save anytime you can go home or see a Kangaskhan statue. When using "Quicksave," you get a temporary save in a dungeon. If you continue it, it'll be erased. In addition, there are ratings for the missions. So, depending on how much time you have, you can choose a mission that meets your time restraints.

Music: 10/10 My ears don't bleed--they rejoice!
Many dungeons of the game have its own theme music--some even have two themes. But many of them also share themes. There is also a boss battle theme and a theme for all the areas in the mainland (like the Square and Friend Areas). Just about all the songs fit the mood of the area nicely, with the perfect tone, style, rhythm, and instrument.

Sound: 8/10 Nice variety, but has room for improvement.
Not too much too say here. It has good sound but can be helped. Many sounds are the same, but does anyone really care? Not really. Because they fit the general model pretty well you can easily associate a zap with Thundershock or a whoosh with Surf or a rumble with Earthquake.

Controls: 9/10 Had this been the GBA version, it would've been 8/10.
The game has very complex controls. It has a learning curve of approximately 30-60 minutes. After your initial two missions, you should get most of the controls. The manual lays out many of the helpful shortcuts like L+A = set attack and L+B = set item. The best part is the use of diagonal moves. R can help when it's really important. The Touch Screen has handy shortcuts to the various menus and, amazingly, the entire game can be played with only the Touch Screen. So, whatever you prefer, by all means, use. Just about all the buttons are used. The controls are very intuitive.

Graphics: 7/10 Nice.
The graphics are very pretty. Each Pokémon has a sprite and is very smooth. Each item has its own graphic. The whole world has very nice tiled graphics. However, there are some instances in which your Pokémon sticks its nose in front of a tree while behind it, which looks odd. Otherwise, well done! Who cares if it's just GBA graphics?

Replayability: 10/10 One of few games where "infinity" is true.
Yes, it's true. This game really shines in this category. You can endlessly (literally) get mission after mission after mission... The game lasts forever. You can also just pick it up and get into it, which is one of the key elements of the game!

Miscellaneous Tidbits: 8/10 Includes several extras, batteries not included.
Okay, not really too much. Another "imagination" game. You can create your own challenges or do a randomly generated one. You could just go out and capture a random Pokémon. There are loads of items. Have fun collecting one of each of them, for example. The Touch Screen's shortcuts and Top Screen's map/team view are a couple. A nice addition is the Makuhita Dojo. Train here for a little challenge (sort of like Gym Leaders). There is also Wondermail in this game, meaning if you can't do a rescue you can pass it on to someone else. Somebody even created a program to make your own rescue missions with the Wondermail option. But really, the game is all about the collection and the rescue missions.

Final Word: 10/10, Buy If you do not own this game, GET. IT. NOW!
Why exactly are you here? Do you like Pokémon, Mystery Dungeon games, games that won't wear out, or did you just buy a DS? Then buy the game! This is a great game for just about anybody. Have fun with the game if you get it.

Breakdown with weights:
Story: 17/20
Gameplay: 45/50
Music: 20/20
Sound: 8/10
Controls: 36/40
Graphics: 22/30
Repalyability: 30/30
Miscellaneous Tidbits: 24/30
Final Word: 45/50
Extra Weight: +10
Sum: 257/280
Score: 92% (9/10)

Final Quote: "What's a Groudon?" - Your partner