It has been a long-running joke in the Pokemon fan community that anything even remotely related to Hoenn would be met with cries of “3rd gen remakes confirmed!” Many fans wanted remakes of the third generation of Pokemon games (Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald) while others were of the opinion that as the Pokemon from those games could still be sent to the current games, a remake is unnecessary.
Well, there’s no reason to argue anymore, because whether or not it’s necessary, we’re getting them. Pokemon has announced the release of two upcoming games, Pokemon Omega Ruby and Pokemon Alpha Sapphire for the Nintendo 3DS and 2DS. These games will take players back to the Hoenn region, where Team Aqua and Team Magma fight to reshape the world with water or land.
“Pokemon fans first enjoyed Pokemon Ruby Version and Pokemon Sapphire VErsion when it launched in 2003 for the Game Boy Advance,” the website states. “Now, a whole new generation of Pokemon fans will experience the dramatic storyline that unfolds in Pokemon OMega Ruby and Pokemon Alpha Sapphire.”
Fans won’t need to contain their excitement for too long, either, as the release date has been set for November 2014.
Now that we have all the facts, let’s look at the games and a little speculation.
While players can still transfer Pokemon from their Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald versions to the current sixth generation games, it’s a bit of an arduous process, first requiring transferring the Pokemon from the Game Boy Advance game to a 4th generation Nintendo DS game via a DS that’s old enough to include a GBA game port. Following that, they need to use two DS systems to transfer them from a 4th generation game to a fifth generation game, then upload them from the 5th gen game to the Pokemon Bank on the 3DS before getting them onto the 6th gen game. It’s doable, of course, but still takes some time, and players new to the game will likely be unable to do that even if they get their hands on the games, which are over ten years old at this point.
Of course, these games will be compatible with the Pokemon Bank, which is designed to support all games from the sixth generation and on.
Is it too soon for a third gen remake? It may feel that way to older players, but as previously mentioned, it has been over ten years since they first came out. Wandering through Hoenn is still fresh in my memory, as it is for those who have been with Pokemon for a long time, but Pokemon is always bringing in new, young fans, who have never had to deal with all the surfing Hoenn required. The game has gone through more than enough systems to provide a significant improvement in graphics since it first came out – from the Game Boy Advance to the Nintendo DS to the Nintendo 3DS – so replaying the game in 3D will provide a nice change in gameplay.
The original Ruby and Sapphire games had players team up with either Team Aqua or Team Magma to fight the opposing team, while Emerald had the player take both of them on. It is likely that the remakes will follow the paths of the original games, as much as I liked Emerald’s storyline.
However, one thing we can hope the remakes take from Emerald is the Battle Frontier, an area accessible after clearing the main game that contains many battle facilities that put a new spin on combat, or present challenges to the trainers as they search for the goal, winning battle points and facing challenging bosses as they do.
Players who have managed to access the game data for Pokemon X and Y have found that the data for Mega Evolutions for Latios and Latias exists, but the Mega Stones required are not available. It is highly possible that they will be available in these new games, as Latios and Latias were introduced in the third generation.
There is also a possibility, though this is just a guess, that the Strange Souvenir, an item available in X and Y that has until now served no purpose, may have some sort of use when sent over to the remakes, as it is given to the player from a character from a region far away.
The only thing we know for sure is that the games are coming, and they’ll be available on the 3DS in a matter of months. So until more newsis announced, all we can do is wait and hope for the best, while preparing to take on an old region anew.