When I had a look around in the Japanese shop I quickly discovered Poketoru. It got its own banner, is free to play and I just gave it a shot. I’m not too fond about the whole free to play model in itself. The gameplay always has its flaws solely for the purpose to lure you into spending some money. It’s alright, it’s a business but I would much rather just pay up front and get a game where I don’t have to make micro payments in order to enjoy it. One of the biggest strength of the [easyazon_link asin=”B00NAW5R0I” locale=”US” new_window=”default” nofollow=”default” tag=”japateas-20″ add_to_cart=”default” cloaking=”default” localization=”default” popups=”default”]new 3DS[/easyazon_link] is the faster processor and wifi. Really makes that much of a difference when you’re handling the little machine. You don’t think twice if the download should start later or immediately. You click on a demo and if your internet connection is decent enough you have the game in a couple of minutes.
I’m a sucker for puzzle and strategy games and just gave Poketoru a try. You need to make combos in tetris style (three or more in a row) to give the Pokemon you’re trying to catch a hit. When the “battle” is over you get the chance to try your luck catching the little monster. And now comes the pay to win into play. You have 15 tries to get as much hits as you can. The less you use, the better are you chances to capture the Pokemon. Or just just spend some money on a super Ball. You choice. What you can also do is just paying for 8 more tries before starting the game
Here is the street where you meet one Pokemon to conquer after the other. What bugs me most about Poketoru is that I always feel little cheated with the “random” pokemon styled puzzle pieces that come down one after another. I’m always thinking that game just wants to lure me into buying more tries. Sometimes you get lucky and do some unbelievable combos. Just one after another and everything fits so perfect. A little too good to be true. I’m just thinking about me as little boy playing this game. Feeling ultimately superior when I’m on a Poketoru roll like this.
I still had some fun with the game even if I didn’t take it too seriously. What it did though was made me hungry for more puzzle action again and I tried Puzzle and Drahons Z for the first time. Really a fun little game (with furigana).
They tried to put a Pokemon-esque (sounds fancy) story around it. The characters look horrible and you can’t really call the “son heads out to conquer the monsters because he is old enough” story attempt actually one. Regardless, the gameplay seems amazing and we all heard how great it has to be. This time on the 3DS completely without any micro-payments and other annoying stuff.
Would probably make a nice addition to my list with great games to learn Japanese with. In Japan Poketoru has to be pretty popular and I bet it brings in quite a lot of money. Slowly luring the kids into play making them feel extra special when one combo hits the next and then when you already captured a couple of Pokemon, it gets tough.
Nintendo even released an eshop prepaid card in Japan with a special Poketoru design. With this you get some in-game benefits as well.