With Pokemon seeing it’s 20th Anniversary of it’s original launch (the Japanese launch, that is), Nintendo have decided to commemorate this event in a pretty spectacular fashion.
Whilst it isn’t a secret any more that they are re-releasing Pokemon Blue, Red and Yellow again for the 3DS Virtual Console, some new, tasty titbits have been unveiled by Nintendo coming in the form of some pretty great 3DS hardware based bundles. For those in North America, Nintendo have decided to treat them to a special edition New 3DS (the normal sized version, not the XL) that will come with swappable cover plates, as per one of the selling points of the normal sized New 3DS.
However, what makes this one interesting is that included in the bundle there will be both Red and Blue focused cover plates in the box with the New 3DS. The face plates will have Charizard one of them, and Blastoise on the other bringing them in line with the original box art for Red and Blue respectively. Even better, Nintendo will be pre-loading Red and Blue onto the system. It hasn’t yet been confirmed however if you’ll be able to swap the game exclusive only Pokemon between the two games on the same system, or if you’ll still need to find someone else to trade with over wireless connection. Curiously, there hasn’t been any mention of a Pokemon Yellow cover plate, or preloaded game in this bundle, nor have they mentioned that it’ll be getting it’s own unique system bundle.
What makes this even more bizarre is that those in Europe will be receiving three separate bundles for Red, Blue and Yellow, each with their own version of the game. The difference here though is that it is the 2DS models and not the New 3DS that is being offered. Also, the shell of each system will be a translucent colour to reflect the game that’s coming preloaded onto the device. Whilst we welcome this move from Nintendo, why not keep it the same as the North American offering rather than give the 2DS instead? In all honesty, it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, especially since those that are most likely to want to play these games again are ones that grew up with it. If you don’t have a 3DS currently and were thinking about getting one for the re-release of Pokemon, how many are genuinely going to get the more child friendly 2DS instead?
Although there is also the other argument that the 2DS is more akin to the original GameBoy, and for those just wanting to play Pokemon again, the 2DS is a cheaper option. Oh, and the translucent shells are pretty cool looking. We do hope though that the Mew code that is being included in the Japanese Virtual Console release will also make it to other regions, failing that, hopefully the good old Mew glitch will still work in these Virtual Console versions on 3DS.