The day Pokemon fans have been waiting for is finally upon us, with the launch of Omega Ruby and Alpha Saphire merely one day away. To celebrate, The Pokemon Company has announced a few new details about the game, as well as an animated short introducing trainers to some of the tiny (and not-so-tiny) critters they’ll be catching and training in the weeks ahead.
Today’s new animated video --which I’m guessing will be shown in the game proper if you don’t press the start button fast enough on the opening menu or something like that-- shows off ORAS’ lead characters, as well as their starting Pokemon and several other monsters they’ll be facing in the soon-to-launch title. For gamers on the east coast, that launch will actually be coming sooner than normal if you’re planning on going digital this time around. The Nintendo Store will update as soon as it hits midnight on the other side of the country, which means that some folks can start downloading the new game as soon as 9 p.m. rolls around this very evening.
For everyone buying physical, however, you have to wait until tomorrow to get your hands on the new game, assuming there isn’t a special midnight launch event happening in your area, of course.
The road to ORAS has been an interesting one. Pokemon X/Y implemented some much needed changes to the long-running series, the most important of which being a big, 3D world for players to explore instead of the standard 2D backgrounds. Many of those changes have been carried over into ORAS, a remake of one of the series’ best-received titles for the Game Boy Advance. On top of all the extra bells and whistles like Power Training and Pokemon-Amie interactions, payers can expect new locations, Pokemon and activities that were not present in the original version of the game. Mega Evolutions will also make a triumphant comeback, alongside the even more powerful Primal Reversions.
There’s even going to be a new way to get around, for those of you who grow weary of walking, running and biking.
“After catching the Pokemon Latias or Latios, players can learn to Soar, allwing them to hop on the back of these Dreagon- and Psychic-type Pokemon and fly high above the Hoenn region,” reads the official launch statement. “This ability lets players access new areas and discover even more Pokemon, including very powerful Legendary Pokemon from previous games in the series.”
There’s also a new mapping system called PokeNav Plus, that lets players more easily navigate the area and learn about the native Pokemon. The device gives you detailed info on the critters, which can also be helpful with the new sneaking maneuver needed to catch certain ‘Mon.
So there you have it. More Pokemon, more new features and some new tweaks that sound like they’ll make the series better than ever before. Get ready, folks, because the train heading for the Hoenn region departs very, very soon.