My Journey to be the Very Best

Some of my physical collection I've kept through my years of training, battling and collecting Pokémon. [Photo by//Caleb Workman]

by Caleb Workman
The Lance – News Editor

There are few games that reach out and have the ability to make you want to spend countless hours on them and there are even fewer that stand the test of time.

In my journey through gaming, both casual and hardcore, there’s only one game where I can switch from generation to generation at any time and still enjoy it as much as when it first came out.

Originally released in 1996, “Pokemon” stole the hearts of children around the world, including my own. I started playing a few years later but “Pokemon Red” was the first one I ever picked up and started playing.

My experience with Red was countless hours of nothing else but training my one starter “Pokemon” – Charizard, obviously – and rushing through to beat the champion and my rival, of whom I named Poohead. The experience – riveting, the battling – amazing and my feel of accomplishment – nothing to compare to.

I took the concept of “Pokemon,” that being to catch them all, and completely ignored it but still enjoyed my experience to what I thought at the time was the fullest. It’s funny how as you grow up you learn more about everything, even things you thought you knew years ago.

Since my initial play through when I was five, I have gone back and played Red multiple times, I still have the same cartridge. On top of that, I’ve gotten to experience “Pokemon” six more times with all the new generations, spin-offs and iterations of each game.

With these new generations and replays of many, I have learned a lot about the game which I ignored initially, such as ‘catching them all,’ breeding, individual values, effort values and so much more that the game has to offer.

In terms of living a life in a game, “Pokemon” is the game that most inspired people to want to be in that world and live that life. It looks like people might actually get the opportunity to live that like with the upcoming “Pokemon Go” but that’s another story.

From Generation 1 to Generation 6, I have not missed one and the experience is changing but I will say it has always stuck true to what it is, even if there’s lacklustre with the designs.

Many people complain the series lacks originality and the compel factor that is required for people to play but to that I say as long as new Pokemon are being released, as long as new experiences are available and as long as the Pokedex is ever evolving and changing, “Pokemon” will always be a major player in the lives of many.

It’s a game where you can be as casual or hardcore with. There are no limits to how far you can go, other than 99, but even then there’s always more to experience.

“Pokemon” has been and will always be something I can go back to and enjoy. It’s not by any means my favourite game but no other game has ever had the drawback factor that this series has.

I look forward to the future of “Pokemon” and the release of the upcoming titles “Pokemon Go” and “Pokemon Sun and Moon.”

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