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Generation I review
I'll be reviewing each Gen in this format.

Here it is: the pair of Gens that started it all. Initially released as Red and Green in Japan, the international release renamed Green as Blue. Yellow was later released to draw parallels to the anime, and much later, the games were remade as Fire Red and Leaf Green to accommodate for Gen III's lack of connectivity with the first 2 Gens.

Setting: The Kanto region. Has a strong theme of genetic engineering with its Pokémon, particularly Mewtwo.

Story: You pick 1 of 3 starter Pokémon and collect 8 badges from each gym while fighting the crime syndicate Team Rocket, led by Giovanni, who turns out to be the final Gym Leader. Not the most interesting plot but you have a good idea of what you're fighting against. You ultimately fight the Elite Four and face the Champion, who turns out to be the same prick whose ass you've been kicking throughout the game. You gain access to Cerulean Cave, fight Mewtwo, and the show's over. The remakes include the Sevii Islands.

Pokemon: Many of this Gen's 151 Pokémon remain fan-favorites, particularly the fully evolved fire starter Charizard. They not only have appealing designs, but generally have well-balanced, if not extremely high stats, allowing them to remain useful as new Mons come in. Sadly, there are many fans of Gen I who refuse to acknowledge anything past this point (except maybe Gen 2, being a direct sequel) as any good, often spouting hypocritical complaints like the supposed lack of animal-based Mons while loving a Gen that included a ball of magnets, a mime, and a woman of (initially) controversial skin color.

Verdict: Gen I undoubtedly deserves praise for starting a legend in video game history. However, to consider the actual Gen I GAMES higher in quality than any sequel would display a blatant Nostalgia Filter. Even by late 90's standards, these games were glitched up the ass. Psychics dominated the metagame with their powerful Special stat (which would be split into Sp. Atk and Def. next Gen) and lack of weaknesses. Finally, the game is practically over once Mewtwo is caught. You don't want to miss this Gen, but I would suggest Fire Red and Leaf Green for all the improvements.


Don't miss my next review of Gen II!
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The one that started it all
It was on my eighth birthday when I received Pokémon Yellow, and I felt it was the best day of my life. To this day, it remains up there on my list of "best days ever". I liked the anime, it was the game that cemented my love for the franchise that continues to this day.

At first, I got a lot of help (well, it was technically cheating) for a little bit before I could find my way around the game. I slowly learned of its secrets, of the creatures in the game, the story, the twists that made my jaw drop, and the excitement of self-fulfilled victory. My brothers eventually received Red and Blue, respectfully, so more was opened up to me as well in discovering the differences between games and the famous glitches. I took my Game Boy and Yellow cartridge everywhere I could. I have started the game over a few times (mostly unwillingly), but in hindsight, it was good fun gaining a slightly different team and game play each time.

Sadly, my Yellow version doesn't work anymore, but I still hold fond memories. It helps that FireRed and LeafGreen were released, and I was able to relive nearly everything. I was literally close to tears when I heard of it, and when I got my hands on a copy. I may have technically finished the game and thus don't play it anymore, but I cherish it still, and will go back for the nostalgia from time to time.

I love Pokémon, and I hope to continue loving Pokémon for years to come. These games are what remains of my childhood, and I am thankful I was able to experience the beginnings of Pokémon, and be part of the start of its pop culture status in America.
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