5 Things to Expect from Pokemon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire
Nintendo finally announced that the long-awaited remakes of Game Boy Advance classics Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire are en route to the 3DS. Not only do Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire exist, but they're scheduled to arrive worldwide later this November, meaning that trainers the world over won't be waiting too long to get their hands on the games. While the news is good, the teaser trailer announcing the titles didn't provide fans with much in the way of gameplay details, footage or even screenshots.
The Pokemon Company may not be ready to show off the pair of new Pocket Monster titles in a grandiose fashion yet (E3 is just around the corner), but we think we have a pretty good idea about what to expect from them. There are a lot of great features that debuted in the original games that we expect to see return, but there are also a couple of updates that will have to happen to keep Ruby and Sapphire relevant to modern gamers.
Taking all this into consideration, we've compiled a list of five things we expect from Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire.
Revamped Hoenn Region
This is one of the more obvious revisions that'll be happening in the upcoming remakes, but it's one that's worth getting excited about. Making the jump from a pixelated 2D aesthetic to a full-blown 3D environment is far from an easy feat, but it's without a doubt the largest selling point for the pair of new games.
Hoenn has been a controversial region as a result of the sheer amount of water that covers it (requiring an ample amount of surfing from players), but the end result was a diverse experience that differentiated itself from other iterations. Whether or not Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire will change up the map to appease fans remains to be seen, but we're thinking that gamers will get a very familiar experience — warts and all.
Bottom line, we can't wait to see what Hoenn will look like rendered in the Pokemon X and Y engine.
Admittedly, it's fun to boot up an older version of Pokemon and revisit the exact same adventure that's painted such a warm, nostalgic picture in the minds of fans, but a lot has changed since then. Aside from the heaps of new Pokemon that have popped into the realm of existence since Ruby and Sapphire debuted in 2003, there are some important mechanics that have been added to the series that need to be recognized.
Mega Evolutions are sure to be a part of the remakes, but many fans will know that this requires a Mega Ring, a Mega Key, and the Pokemon of choice needs to be holding a Mega Stone that'll allow them to temporarily transform. These are items that will be introduced either during or after the main adventure, so get ready for some kind of explanation for its inclusion.
Add in other features like the new Fairy-type and things won't exactly as fans remembered them.
New Mega Evolutions
Tying in with the previous mention of Mega Evolutions, gamers should expect new forms to make their debut in Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. There are a number of Pokemon that instantly come to mind when thinking of monsters that deserve Megas, and two of the more prominent are without a doubt Sceptile and Swampert. Since Blaziken already has a Mega form, it'd be a bit of an unfair advantage for Torchic trainers if Treeko and Mudkip were left out.
It's also important to note that Latias and Latios (two Gen. 3 Legendaries) have a Mega Evolution that's currently not available in Pokemon X and Y, and it's possible that players will finally be able to unlock their alternate appearances when the new titles arrive later this year.
It's bound to happen so the question becomes: "Which Pokemon will be on the receiving end of a Mega transformation?"
Those who never played Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire missed out on what was quite possibly the coolest feature the series has ever had - Secret bases allowed those setting out to become a Pokemon Master to create a place of their very own, but the best parts about it were that players could choose where it was located and completely customize it. Whether trainers wanted to fill it with dolls, furniture, or a slide, each and every base truly felt like a private oasis tucked away in the Hoenn region.
Even cooler yet, players connecting with their friends could transfer their buddy's pad over to their game, and upon visiting their cohort's base gamers could battle them with the Pokemon their chum had on them during their last interaction. Since the 3DS has Street Pass abilities, a Friend List, and online features, the implementation of the secret base would make for a revolutionary feature to reintroduce to the franchise.
There's just too much potential that bases bring to the table to be excluded, so expect to see them return.
There's a lot of excitement that surrounds every new Pokemon game, but it's just nice to finally see the return of Groudon and Kyogre as cover creatures. There's still a lot left to see of Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, but right now fans are just content with the promise of revisiting Hoenn — it has been over 11 years since we last explored the region, after all.
For now, we're confident that players can expect all of the previously mentioned features, additions, and much more. What aspect of Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire are you most looking forward to in the 3DS remakes? Which features (new or old) do you expect to see in the new games?
Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire can be caught on the Nintendo 3DS in November 2014.
Follow Riley on Twitter @TheRileyLittle.