Pokémon Diamond/Pearl… So Close…

Is anyone else as psyched as I am about the rapidly impending release of Pokémon Diamond/Pearl for the Nintendo DS? Less than two months to go until I’m battling and trading online with friends and foes alike!

I’ve been following the Pokémon series from the beginning (back when I was trading Bellsprout to my brother to receive the coveted Oddish), and I can honestly say that I haven’t anticipated an entry in the series this much since the excellent Gold/Silver edition. Ruby/Sapphire was fun and all, but the omission of day/night functionality and weekly scheduled events saddened me to no end; needless to say, Diamond/Pearl adding FIVE times of day has got me sufficiently pumped.

But of course, the biggest feature of all (it certainly ain’t having two screens or touch control) is the ability to connect to other players via the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection! This is something I’ve dreamed about from the very beginning, before people were even talking about console games hooking up over the Internet. It was always a pain carrying around the rat’s nest of link cables just so you could track down an extra Articuno to make up for the one you accidentally knocked out (good experience though). From what I’ve read across the Interslice, the game employs a clever trade request system: post on the equivalent of a bulletin board with the Pokémon you’re looking for and what you’re willing to give up for it. If someone accepts the request, the trade will go through – even if you’re not currently connected! And of course, battling on a worldwide network is going to rock all kinds of worlds, especially with the inclusion of voicechat. I’m sure we’ll all get our asses handed to us at first if we’re allowed to link up to the Japanese games, since they’re had a several month headstart.

See you all April 22nd!