Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky
Embark on a journey after you get turned into a Pokémon as a result of a freak accident, causing you to lose your memory as well as contact with and knowledge of your previous adventuring partner, with whom you were on a secret mission to save the world. Watch your story unfold in a dungeon crawling rogue-lite experience as you form your very own rescue team with a new partner of your choosing.
Reviews View More
This is pretty long, and it's full of opinions, with a bit of critical view of the game (there also may be grammatical
errors I'm not aware of, sorry in advance).
The fact that this is a Pokémon game still confuses me more than it actually should.
It's a Pokémon game because there are pokémons everywhere, they use moves, they use items, and you (kind of) build your pokémon team, just like a regular pokémon title, despite being different.
When I was a kid I wanted to get this game because I saw "Pokémon" in the title. And so my dad bought me the game. And Chunsoft move was successful. This is why the fact that this game (which is an entry in the Mystery Dungeon series, which originally didn't have pokémons) is a Pokémon game is a plus.
Everytime I told my friend who didn't play this game, they responded: "Uh, it's a different game than Pokémon, you don't catch pokémons, you don't train them, I don't like it". This is why the fact that this is a Pokémon game is a con.
Sure, it has pokémons, and I've heard many people making favourites pokémons out of this game (Grovyle, Celebi, Wigglytuff, many of the starters, etc...), and I've recently seen sorts of "recruit 'em all challange" gameplays on youtube, but the fact is another.
This is not just a Pokémon game, it's more.
It could have been a *blank* Mystery Dungeon game, with the same story, the same plot twists, the same music, the same graphic, and with characters with a different aspect: my opinion wouldn't change. The fact that there are pokémons, to me, is just an appreciated icing on the cake.
Having said that, gosh this game is underrated as hell. 5/5 may not be an objectively fair score. It has is flaws, of course; the perfect game does not exists.
The main story builds up a bit slowly, but once you're into it, it's beyond amazing. The post game is really good (unlike Rescue Team's). The special episodes? Three of them are ok, two of them are as wonderful as the main story. Every single character has his personality. Every, single, character.
And yeah, the OST is timeless, but those are tastes.
The graphic and sound quality? It's bad. It's a portable game, I couldn't expect less, and as a kid I didn't care. After replaying it as an adult, I cared, but it didn't stop me to enjoy the overall experience.
The difficulty is unbalanced, and can be quite frustrating for many players, so everyone who always complains about how easy (most of) the main series games are should have what they always wanted.
The more I got defeated, the more I got my poké-money reward reduced cause of the Guild's rule, the more I lost every item cause of a defeat, the more I ran into a monster house, the less I felt frustrated, and this helped me getting less frustrated at every injustice I got in real life. I'm not joking. This game actually helped me becoming a better person.
This is my favourite game of all time. I can't recommend enough to everyone (expecially non pokémon fans) to give it at least a try, and if you don't like it, it's completely alright.
It's not the best game ever made, far from it. But it has received an undeserved treatment from the critics, that was about to ruin its reputation, if it wasn't for fans.
If you haven't played this, I guarantee it's better than you think it is.
Explorers of Sky would potentially sit right at home if adapted as a Saturday morning cartoon, its entire story and sequential chapters making solid episodic content, especially alongside Sky's new chapter additions that function as side episodes within select characters from the cast. It would join the leagues of Avatar: The Last Airbender and Infinity Train in that regard, because its lighthearted exterior builds a foundation to unravel a story with real depth to it.
That's where most of the appeal of Explorers of Sky comes from, and it certainly had a profound impact on me in my childhood, of which still lingers to this very day with every replay. Every particular scene has charm and real intent behind it, slowly showcasing the epic that is Explorer of Sky's narrative. The music helps too, with absolute bangers ranging from Treasure Town to Through the Sea of Time, emphasizing the emotional weight behind some of these story moments. Not a single hour went by where I wasn't immersed in the mysticism and engaging world on offer here, even shedding a tear at certain scenes.
It's a little disappointing that the somewhat below standard roguelite rpg gameplay that underlines it isn't particularly interesting or good, although I have found it to be less irritating over time. That has more to say about my unapologetic love of the game though than it is to say that it does actually get better. There is postgame on offer that does make use of its sparse mechanics, but generally it is something to give your hands something to do in between scenes. It takes up more than a solid 1/3 of the runtime though, so it's something to consider before jumping in.
That being said, I would recommend Explorers of Sky wholeheartedly. It's still one of my favorite games to this day, and my heart still wails after the end credits. At the very least, I do hope you give it a try, for a grand tale of time and darkness awaits you! (8.5/10)
You're just straight up fucking lying if you played this and didn't cry by the end.