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Proposal Review: Pokémon Green Review

Started by The Law February 10th, 2019 5:48 PM
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  • 2 replies

The Law

Critical, but well meaning

Male
Seen 4 Weeks Ago
Posted July 13th, 2019
13 posts
339 Days
(This is the first draft of a review of Pokemon Green Remix
If you'll have me, I'd love to take request for games to review.
On top of that I majored in Game Design and I felt like I learned a lot,
so I'd love to write some articles about game design and such to help people out.

I do plan on adding images to reinforce or illustrate some of my points. The main purpose for now is regarding the tone of the review.
I do believe I can come off as harsh and rude in my writings. I just want to ensure I don't do that, so I want to hear your opinions on this piece before going further with it.)

Pokemon Green Remix

Introduction
I was approached by a member of Pokecommunity if I was interested in writing some editorials every now and then to go on the forums.
But they also wanted to see what I could do with my reviews. A perfect opportunity arose with one of the members of Pokecommunity
approached me, asking for feedback on their fangame.

With that in mind, here is my review of Pokemon Green Remix.

Presentation
The game starts off with a good presentation. The opening title screen has a nice background and graphics to it.
On top of that the introduction with Professor Oak is similar to the one in the original Kanto games, but set
in the overworld with a nice little custcene of Oak walking with the sprites dynamically changing.

The Oak speech takes place in the overworld
This presentation works well since it takes the source material and changes it around to give it new life and charm,
whilst still remaining faithful to what it is adapting.


The Region
First of all I want to get this out of the way since this point is entirely subjective.
I can’t stand Kanto.

Green Remix takes place in Kanto
I have seen Kanto quite a few times over the years, and truth be told. Kanto is just a very boring region for me.
I have tried a number of Kanto fan-games and none of them so far have managed to make me enjoy Kanto.
Green Remix doesn’t succeed for me in this area. But at the same time I accept that I am just not a part of the target demographic as a result.

The Roster
Alright so I am not a big fan of Gen I’s roster. And given how all the Pokémon I encountered so far were Gen I,
with the only exception being my starter, I didn’t enjoy the roster available. I am aware that Delta types and Randomizers
are available, but I’d rather experience the game as it is without these to judge it on how it was balanced without them.


The starter selection includes all starters from Gen I through VII

The Music
Let's talk about the music. Because it honestly isn’t great.
The music is an assault of messy piano tracks stacked on top of each other that is hard on the ears.
It’s like someone took a track and ran it through a midi converter and all the instruments were turned into Pianos.
The tracks are remixes of the original music, but they are butchered so badly I just prefer to play without music.
Even with music some areas completely lack music and it sucks out so much atmosphere from the game and leaves it barren and the world feel empty and lifeless.

The trainer battles lack encounter music. The background music from the are you are in keeps playing whenever you enter a battle. Albeit from what I have heard, the dev is working on adding encounter music.

Framerate and Performance
One of the first things you will also notice is how poorly the game runs. At least for me,
the game has issues with keeping a stable framerate. On top of that the controls are clunky and jerky.
They lack the smoothness the controls the main games have and feels off. To any person who has played
a lot of Pokémon games, the games control and feel will very likely be off putting.

Graphics
The menus look gorgeous, and are pleasant on the eyes. The colours don't clash and the design doesn't shove so much information in your face that you end up with information overload.




The general spritework looks great. Much of it is lifted from HG/SS but it works well and I can't critique it that much.

However the “dual” screen setup hurts the game more, than it helps. You'll notice this in some of the cutscenes. But you can sometimes see
the NPC’s waiting for you off screen. The first cutscene with Oak when you attempt to walk into tall grass has him pop out of nowhere to stop you,
and when he walks off he disappears into thin air. This just makes it seem like the game was made with one screen, but during the last minute
they just decided to change it to this “dual” screen setup without adapting anything to it.

Balancing
The majority of the battles you will be in will have Pokémon which are level 1, and their levels barely
increase. Even when you face the 3rd badge you aren’t even up against Pokémon above level 10.


Two of Misty's Pokémon. The levels are definitely way too low for a 2nd Gym.

To top of the Trainers and wild encounters, some of them are not fit for the level you meet them at.
You can find a level 1 Deoxys right after Pewter City and many of the trainers, whilst still having mons
that don’t cross level 10, some of them are fully evolved, and I have personally always hated those “illegal” Pokémon.


Mapping
The gyms are lifeless. They are now a singular room with only the Gym leader.
Gone is the guy that gives you advice and believes in you at the entrance, as well the statues that tells you what trainers have beaten the leader.


The Gym's have been downsized, and subsequently lost their charm.

The marts have 5 shop options and I question the need for so many of them. Other than the 5 vendors the Marts’ are empty
and so are the Pokémon Centers. There are no NPC’s other than the staff which only contributes to the overall empty, void world.

The one custom map that was added, which was not a part of Kanto before is in Mt. Moon, but it’s so big, bland and empty with so little in it,
that it doesn’t justify it being here. Some of the building looks like they are copy pasted and some of the changes to the layout are questionable.
Which is a shame given I liked how the Underground Path looked, but the weird traffic cones that appears to be there just to inconvenience you,
makes me question the map design a lot.


The custom area in Mt Moon is vast, but empty.

Sound Design
The sound effects do not sound like they belong in a Pokémon game. Some of the locations don’t make sense, like your own house which for some reason,
despite being a small 2 story house, has 2 sets of stairs to the same floor. When you beat a trainer their sprite appears in the wrong location.
The move animations do not fit the style of Pokémon at all, with the only move I felt like matched the feel of Pokémon Games was Absorb.

Interface
The battle screen as a result looks empty and the space available simply isn’t used properly. The moves for your Pokémon and the menu options
are bundled up around your Pokémon, but it could easily have been turned into something like we had in the DS titles. Heck we could have had
Pokétch for when we are in the overworld. It is just empty white space that hurts the game more than it allows for creative expression.


The battle interface has so much whitespace that could be used.

Final Verdict
Overall Green Remix as it is right now is not very good. It lacks the charm and many of the elements to make it feel like a Pokémon title.
Many small flaws and some glaring ones drag it down and heavily outweigh the good.

There is a long way to go for this title. However I do believe if it is refined it can become a good Kanto-fan title.
Albeit I probably won’t personally play it. I hope the game improves, because as it stands right now, it’s sadly quite a mess.

-The Law

Laslow

Ashe – House of Blue Lions

Male
Melbourne, Australia
Seen 12 Hours Ago
Posted 3 Weeks Ago
While I don’t care for balanced reporting, this draft does stick a lot into the "bad" column, and that might not fly. Perhaps file your thoughts into different categories of interest instead of filling up comments under a "The Bad" heading?

It might otherwise intimidate our readers.

bobandbill

This is fine.

Male
A cape
Seen 7 Hours Ago
Posted 15 Hours Ago
15,270 posts
11.7 Years
Hi, sorry for the delay. Have some more comments! More focused on general comments here.
Introduction
I was approached by a member of Pokecommunity if I was interested in writing some editorials every now and then to go on the forums.
But they also wanted to see what I could do with my reviews. A perfect opportunity arose with one of the members of Pokecommunity
approached me, asking for feedback on their fangame.
I don't feel that the backstory of how you were asked to do a review needs to go in the intro - people wanting to read about the game won't care much about it, so I would suggest making the introduction more about the game itself. You could say "I was asked to provide a review on this game, so here is my review on ___. It is about ____", for example.
Presentation
The game starts off with a good presentation. The opening title screen has a nice background and graphics to it.
On top of that the introduction with Professor Oak is similar to the one in the original Kanto games, but set
in the overworld with a nice little custcene of Oak walking with the sprites dynamically changing.
With the layout, don't make a new line every sentence or two, as it looks odd (especially when done mid-sentence). Keep everything paragraphed together - like how my post here has been done. You can also check other articles as a reference. Even on mobile screens article widths are automatically adjusted anyway.
First of all I want to get this out of the way since this point is entirely subjective.
I can’t stand Kanto.

Green Remix takes place in Kanto
I have seen Kanto quite a few times over the years, and truth be told. Kanto is just a very boring region for me.
I have tried a number of Kanto fan-games and none of them so far have managed to make me enjoy Kanto.
Green Remix doesn’t succeed for me in this area. But at the same time I accept that I am just not a part of the target demographic as a result.
Fair enough - I like that you explain your reasons on why you don't like e.g. Kanto. Maybe you could mention something pertaining to how the game uses Kanto - is it the same maps as previous games, or does it make any changes to layout? Any added routes?

Similarly for the roster. You mention that there's all the starters gen gen I to VII, but another detail or two would tell us more about the game.

The trainer battles lack encounter music. The background music from the are you are in keeps playing whenever you enter a battle. Albeit from what I have heard, the dev is working on adding encounter music.
Area you are in? And the second bolded bit could start a bit smoother (e.g. "However, from what I have heard...").
To top of the Trainers and wild encounters, some of them are not fit for the level you meet them at.
You can find a level 1 Deoxys right after Pewter City and many of the trainers, whilst still having mons
that don’t cross level 10, some of them are fully evolved, and I have personally always hated those “illegal” Pokémon.
Fix the double space and refer to Pokemon in full, rather than 'mons'.
The marts have 5 shop options and I question the need for so many of them. Other than the 5 vendors the Marts’ are empty
and so are the Pokémon Centers. There are no NPC’s other than the staff which only contributes to the overall empty, void world.
five over 5.

I do agree with Laslow that you could try to be a bit mor balanced, especially as (I assume) this title is a work in progress, given it will have more music made for it. It would be worth rewriting to frame it in that regard - that there are areas to improve, pointing out those that could use more work, but also highlighting more positives while refraining from calling things straight out "bland".

Hope that helps - do ping us when you have a new version with the above edits applied so we can take another look. In the meantime, you can PM myself or Laslow a desired username and email address so we can make you an account on Daily - then you can port your new version to a draft article over there.
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