I kind of implied it in yesterday’s entry but you just won’t get a lot of mileage out of My Pokémon Ranch if you don’t have a copy of one of the DS games to connect with it. But, shocker of shockers, I certainly do have one of the DS games to link up with it.
You might be asking yourself why on Earth would I want to buy another Pokémon game. And to that I can only say that you apparently don’t know me very well. I just kind of like the series, that’s all. The games are as deep as you want them to be, and I have the opportunity to catch innocent wild creatures and force them to do my bidding, satiating my God complex… Okay, not really. I just like goofing around with it, trying out the different moves, checking out the variety of monsters, and generally trying to create my super-awesome nigh-unbeatable team… which actually usually turns out to be quite beatable.
There is a story in this game, but it really is just kind of a framework for you to work in that slowly introduces you to the world, its inhabitants, and the bizarre organized pokémon fighting culture that has somehow pervaded its world.
Or you could catch them and dress them up to participate in contests instead of fighting them. Or you could dispense with fighting completely and navigate the underground network and attempt to find hidden treasures.
But probably the most interesting part of the game is that it takes advantage of the DS’s wireless capabilities to connect to the Nebulous Internet. You can use this newfangled tech-a-nology to trade whatever you’ve collected with other folks around the world. The interface could use a little work. You can’t, for instance, search for something unless you’ve seen it first. This makes it kind of tough to ‘catch ‘em all’ since lots of the ones you’ll need to actually do that will never cross your paths without some… creative shenanigans.
You might remember that the DS, on the bottom, has a slot that will accommodate one Game Boy Advance cartridge. Once you reach a certain point in your DS adventure, you can utilize the kinda super-secret transfer method to move your monsters that you worked so hard to get in the Game Boy titles over to your DS game. Which certainly will help speed things along, but will definitely leave your prior-generation title bereft of all your hard-gotten uber-characters, which would make it kind of tough to go back and play it… if you were so inclined. Which, history has shown, will happen from time to time.
Of course, if you have a family member who gives you a copy of one of the GBA games that she found in the parking lot of some school, and the game was run over a few times, but still worked fine. Then you would probably not have any qualms about taking all of that kid’s monsters.
At least, I didn’t.