Where are my trumpets?
As an addendum to my other article about why Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire are both great and not-so-great Pokémon games, I’ve decided to specify six things that I think could have made the 3DS remakes even better. What would you have liked to see in the new Pokémon games that didn’t end up getting in? Sound off below.
Please note: Spoilers!
6) Battle Frontier
Putting this at #6 because it’s the most obvious pick. Battle Frontier is a staple from the third generation of Pokémon games (specifically Emerald) and one of the most beloved new things to come out of the GBA generation. When you get to the Battle Resort after beating the Elite Four and Delta Episode, there are extremely obvious hints towards a Battle Frontier that isn’t in the final game. Whether this means we’re getting a Delta Emerald game next year (I hope not) or representation in whatever upcoming X and Y sequel/third version Game Freak pushes out remains to be seen, but Battle Maison just doesn’t cut it for this game.
Considering Deoxys, Latias, Latios, all four Regis, and almost every other legendary under the sun get representation in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, it’s a travesty that Jirachi doesn’t get its own event as well. I would have loved to see a Level 90 Jirachi event take place as the final super-duper legendary encounter after the Delta Episode, maybe hidden in the same way Rayquaza was in the old ones, off to the side behind a rock that disappears after you properly beat the game.
4) More and Better Hoenn Mega Evolutions
I know, I know. We can only have 20-30 Mega Evolutions in each game so we don’t run out of creatures to Mega Evolve. But man, where is Mega Flygon? Where is my Slaking Mega Evolution that drops Truant and picks up Pure Power or Adaptability as its ability? Where is Mega Jirachi and Mega Deoxys? Why do we get Mega Diancie and Mega Beedrill instead? And some of these creatures look ridiculous. Why do Mega Latios and Mega Latias look like commercial airplanes? Why does Rayquaza look like Shenron? What even is Mega Salamence (banned from OU, but besides that)?
3) Better Early Game
As I stated in my other article, one of the biggest flaws in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire is its lack of substantial early-game enhancements. You get a legendary Pokémon halfway in, you get the sneaking mechanic, and Mauville has turned into a living nightmare, but the rest of the early game plays almost identically to the original games. The pair of games should have had a few more story events to sink into and maybe even an expanded Dewford Town (which ultimately got slightly worse thanks to its inferior version of Granite Cave, and, in my opinion, needed improvement more than Mauville). It’s just a little dull to see the game be such a straight remake for so long, even if the game it is based on is as good as Ruby and Sapphire.
2) GBA Sounds
In the HeartGold and SoulSilver remakes, there was an obtainable item called GB Sounds that would allow you to play the game with a redone soundtrack of the original Gold and Silver. The Game Boy Color sounds added a great nostalgic twist to the game, so it was especially disappointing to see that GBA Sounds was nowhere to be found. Criticize the trumpets all you want, but I love how weird the soundtrack of the original games are, and they have some of the catchiest and most memorable songs in the series to me.
1) Hard Mode
Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire may very well be the easiest games in the series. Even if you fail to consider the Latios/Latias the game gives you halfway through as well as the Exp. Share, the game just feels too easy. I would have liked to see two difficulties for this game a la Black 2 and White 2: Easy and Hard (available from the beginning in this case). Easy Mode is the game we got, with all of the Exp. Share and free legendaries you can handle. Hard Mode has no Exp. Share whatsoever, Latios/Latias is made a roaming legendary, and all of the gym leader and trainer battle Pokémon levels get a small boost. It would be a subtle difference, but one that allows everyone to get an ideal Pokémon experience.