New Gold Era
September 16, 2022
Don't Want to Read?Pokemon Gold, 100 years into the future, with urbanization taking over the Pokemon World with new towers and locations to explore.
- Massive changes to both regions with new areas and places to explore.
- Unique HM order, with cut not being found until later that changes up the usual exploration order.
- First ROM Hack I've seen use the upstairs of Pokemon Centers for unique stuff.
- Repetitive Dialogue can get old (see drinking game below).
- Extremely high number of unavoidable trainer battles, often walking into a room can trigger two back-to-back.
- Difficulty spike in Kanto can be annoying to work through.
- Almost all progress is gated behind clunky NPCs who tell you to go somewhere and pick up an item. They then disappear, it is not an item they need, they just want you to go pick it up for your own edification.
- Incredibly overpowered items available at incredibly low prices (Sacred Ash is cheaper than a normal revive).
Taking place 100 years after the original Gold and Silver, New Gold Era has a new story and a focus on urbanization and its affect on nature. You start out in Goldenrod where you live in the Pokemon Center and take a teleporter to New Bark Town to get your starter before you travel across Johto and Kanto to get all 16 badges before you can challenge the Elite 4.
- New starters: Houndour Natu, and Mankey. Also you get an Eevee before the starters.
- Gym order is different in both Johto and Kanto
- Themed challenge towers (including ones for Team Mystic, Instinct, and Valor) dot the cities in both regions.
- All Kanto Gym leaders now have a secondary job (Lt. Surge's Gym is now also a restaurant?).
- Increased difficulty levels in Kanto.
- More legendary and shiny events.
- 25 new TMs
Drinking Game (for the Suicidal)
- Every time someone mentions urbanization
- Every time someone mentions friendship, particularly studying friendship.
- Every time someone says "Go away boy!"
- Every time a stranger knows your character's name for no reason.
- Finish off your glass every time you walk into a new screen and immediately have to do two trainer battles before you can move at all.
- Finish off your glass every time an NPC tells you to go pick up an item or TM from some cave so you can progress. Not so they can have it or they need it, just because they feel like you need to have it before entering route 12.
I wanted to like this one a lot more than I actually did. I really liked having some new areas, new starters, and new order of operations for both gyms and HMs. While clunkily told (everyone just says out loud 'urbanization sure is a theme of this hack'), I enjoyed a Pokemon game exploring some of the themes the story touches on. However, the longer it went on the more it overstayed its welcome. Routes are much narrower due to more housing filling them and very few of the many trainer battles on them are avoidable at all, often walking into a building requires you to fight two simultaneously. This even happens in normal buildings like the TM shop in Goldenrod.
The game's economy makes little sense as well. You can buy every type of berry early on for 10 pokedollars each. Even the berry that heals PP or HP by 30. This means you get a better potion, a full heal, and a PP restoring item for 1/20th the standard price of a potion before your first badge. Before my second I had multiple sacred ashes as well as any TM I could want.
I enjoyed using the new starters and it was cool to explore some of the new areas, but they were not too fleshed out and many of them were long gauntlets of teleporters and trainer battle after trainer battle with no real puzzles or areas to explore. It can be fun to play for a while, but don't force your way to the end, just stop playing when you start to lose interest. Though I did love the game breaking the fourth wall to tell you the reason all the same characters are around after 100 years is because time works differently in their universe, pointing to Ash's age as the example.