Many nineties kids consider themselves blessed to have a video game console as grand as the Nintendo 64 thriving in their era. Many others agree as well that the Nintendo 64 outlived its generation, giving us games like Super Mario 64, Zelda the Ocarina of Time, and Pokemon Stadiums one and two. It’s understandable why many gaming fans would be excited for Pokemon Battle Revolution’s release, being Stadiums’ sequel. With a two generation of consoles upgrade, there was more than a fair bit of anticipation. Too bad it was such a bust in the end.
Compare the ign.com ratings for said games: Pokemon Stadium clocked in with an 8.2, Pokemon Stadium 2 checked in with a 7.5 (expected for a direct sequel), and Pokemon Battle Revolution, after a six year wait, came up at an even five. Foremost, referring to a certain magazine article on video game ratings, the system works in such a way that eights are good games, sevens are tolerable or good babysitting tools, and everything below is complete trash. Perhaps I’m confused, but I’m fairly certain that a five is less than a seven, making Pokemon Battle Revolution, well, trash. I entirely agree. The game, even with the use of my own team, was nothing more than battle after battle after battle with no real sense of accomplishment, no appeal. Essentially, all the “coliseums” were just the en-route tedious trainer battles the player could find on the hand held, just with more animations, an irritating narrator, and no reward. Regardless of how many battles were fought, the game would reward the player with nothing more than another battle. Of course they tried to spice it up a bit, what with the gimmicks at the different areas. For instance, one coliseum had a rule where only Pokemon at or below level five were eligible. While it wasn’t a tackle-growl-leer routine, as TM and egg moves are fine, it was more than a bit unexciting; either the Pokemon are too weak to do any damage, or they have a move that one-hit KO’s all twenty of the opponents health. There were other gimmicks too, but my reaction was the same with each: “Well, this is crap.”
This game ended up being one of the most tedious, irritating, boring game I’ve played. What’s more, I finished it for the mystery gifts Magmortar and Electrivire, which were far from worth it, I’ll tell you. Now, the argument may be made that the original Pokemon Stadiums were tedious too, being a number of trainer battles also lacking experience. The difference I feel, though, is the polish, a Nintendo trademark. Playing the game would actually amount to secrets and bonuses, giving the player a drive to continue. Moreover, mini games and additional modes covered for players when they either finished the game or reached a point of needing something more. Though simple, the mini games were probably a maker in the first two Stadium games, and are notably missing in Pokemon Battle Revolution. Oh? What’s that? You can customize your character instead? Oh, jolly day! Now I can unlock that hat and go listen to the announcer in another battle! Sorry, that sounds great but I have a busy day of banging my head against the wall planned.
For those of you who were as unfortunate as me to have wasted money on this game, let’s hope your local GameStop retailer will be in a generous mood. Those who rented the game, me and my wallet have envied you for four long years. Those who were considering the game, go dust of that Nintendo 64 and head for Craigslist.