Trainers, get your pokeballs ready. Late last night, Nintendo unveiled the next chapter in the Pokemon series. This newest game, called Pokemon Black and White, will be a brand new experience – unlike the recent HeartGold and SoulSilver, which hung new bells and whistles on an older release.
Now on "generation five," Pokemon has changed very little over the years. The wildly popular series still revolves around capturing, training, and battling cute and imaginative creatures. As the digital menagerie grows, Nintendo has added some new layers, including the new Pokewalker pedometer that turns real-life exercise into in-game rewards.
Details on this newest title are scant, but this is what we know for sure:
– Pokemon Black and White will come out in Japan by this fall. No word on a western release date. These games often take a while to reach US shores, partially because of the task of translating and localizing the game for American players. For example, HeartGold and SoulSilver hit Japan in September 2009 but only came to America four weeks ago.
– The upcoming title will come with new Pokemon. So far, Nintendo has only taken the wraps off of two: Jiroa and its evolved form, Jiroaaku. Well, those are the Japanese names. Others have translated their names as Zorua and Zoroark.
– Nintendo will release more information via the official Japanese Pokemon site on April 15.
Fun fact: Just as Topeka temporarily changed its name to Google, Kansas (and sparked the search engine April Fool's joke), the state capital previously changed its name to ToPikachu in 1998 to honor the Pokemon franchise.
What do you want from a new Pokemon game? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
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Update: For the latest Pokemon Black and White news, check out our new article here.