The last few years have seen Nintendo embrace mobile and touch-based platforms. Their iconic franchises like Mario, Pokémon and Fire Emblem have been reimagined in order to make the most of newer economic models as they have garnered huge numbers of downloads.
Pokémon Masters is their latest offering, a game that has been downloaded over ten million times in the last week!The game is built on a very simple premise where you arrive on the artificial island, Pasio, and meet most of the iconic characters.
Just off the start you meet Brock and Misty and then go on to meet several characters from other adventures. This game re-creates the much-loved partnerships between Pokémon trainers as you watch Brock train with his Onix and Misty form bonds with Starmie.
Focused purely on combat, this is a game where you collect combinations of trainers and their partner Pokémon (called sync pairs) as cards. Each sync pair has been a given star rating and you can find rare and epic combinations by opening packs. Sync pairs also unlock special moves during combinations called sync moves which can either be attack, defence or recovery centred.
The iconic combat system returns as you build teams of three in order to fight against other teams and clear chapters in the campaign. The game is single-player in nature and, at times, you feel that a potential opportunity for multi-player has been missed here.
The graphics, combat visuals and music are top-notch, but the game comes across as a little unpolished. There are a few stutters and the targeting system in combat is at times difficult to control. This will be a fantastic trip down memory lane for lovers of classic Pokémon games who grew up playing on their game boys. Everyone else could make their first acquaintance with the adorable Pikachu.