One of the most highly requested generations of Pokémon is BACK in the form of Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl. Advertised as faithful remakes of the 2006 games that were originally released on the Nintendo DS, we return to the Sinnoh region to take down Team Galactic, become the Sinnoh League Champion, and climb Mount Coronet all over again but this time on the Switch with an all-new art style. Are you nervous about if you want to visit Sinnoh for the first time? What about if you haven’t yet decided on if you should buy The Pokémon Company’s latest release developed by newcomer ILCA? Well, here are 3 reasons why you should hurry to your nearest store and catch Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl (BDSP).
It is a great mix of old AND new
While being faithful remakes, I was surprised to see just how many new features were in BDSP. For instance, the ability to access your boxed Pokémon anywhere has returned. That’s right! You can still change out your Pokémon any time you want (except in battles… for now)! Same for newer mainstays like consistent EXP share and the ability to turn off the prompt to name your Pokémon every time you caught one. For me, it was daunting to hear that BDSP would be so faithful because the newer quality of life changes in more modern Pokémon games made the series more approachable for newcomers. But that isn’t completely the case.
We still get to explore Sinnoh with all of its mysteries but with all the new features that we’ve come to appreciate on our Pokémon journeys. There are still some older elements that remain though. Like, while the Fairy type is still present, there is still just the Sinnoh Pokédex without any newer Pokémon past Generation 4 making an appearance during your playthrough. Plus there are no changes to the story. We get to experience the original Diamond and Pearl beat-for-beat (with the occasional mention of a new feature) with a shiny coat of paint on it.
It laughs with you about past Pokémon games
If you weren’t around during the Hidden Move (HM) era, or are an HM hater, you may be asking yourself if one of the most universally hated parts of Pokémon generations 1-6 is showing its ugly head again. Yes and no. HMs are technically back, but in a way that is much appreciated. Back when Pokémon Diamond and Pearl were originally released, just about every trainer I knew, including myself, had a Bidoof that was used exclusively as an “HM slave.” HMs were abilities that could be taught to certain Pokémon but could not be unlearned and were required for progression. These came in the form of Surf, Cut, Fly, Rock Smash, Strength, etc. Just about every generation had a Pokémon that was unconsciously chosen to be the HM slave, and Bidoof pulled the short straw in generation 4.
In BDSP, however, with the handy use of your Pokétch (read Pokémon watch), you still use HMs but it calls upon a wild Pokémon to perform said action out in the open world. You can still assign these moves to your Pokémon, but they’re not nearly as essential as they used to be. Plus, each time you use one, it calls upon the same Pokémon, and for moves like Cut and Rock Smash, it’s a wild Bidoof that comes to save your day. So, thank you to every wild Bidoof out there, and sorry I had you keep bashing your heads into rocks so I can progress in my game.
It’s a great way to prepare for Pokémon Legends: Arceus
One of the highly anticipated games in 2022 is The Pokémon Company and Game Freak‘s next release, Pokémon Legends: Arceus, which takes place in the Hisuian region. Fun fact, Hisui is ancient Sinnoh and will feature a past look at this beautiful region. It will also feature the legendary Pokémon Arceus as one of the driving forces. In BDSP, we get to learn about the history of Pokémon and the Pokémon world, including how all Pokémon were believed to have originated from Arceus, as he is literally Pokemon God. While I suspect we’ll get a good history lesson of Arceus in Pokémon Legends: Arceus, you can play through it and its 6 children(Giratina, Palkia, Dialga, and the 3 lake Deities)’s original debut to the series.
Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl are available now on Nintendo Switch.