Gotta Snatch’Em All!
This game has one of my favorite stories of any Pokemon game. Part of that opinion comes from it simply being different from the run of the mill pick-a-starter-and-collect-the-badges type story of the handheld Pokemon titles. I am not saying the story itself is perfect, as some of the dialogue is a bit odd and nonchalant at times, despite serious implications being made.
The game starts with a scene of someone entering into a building. He steals an item that looks like a fashion accessory at first glance. They ride away on a motorcycle as the facility explodes. He doesn’t seem like a hero, but this person is the main character and protagonist of the game.
I want to focus on him for a minute. We learn early on that the main character is not your typical pure hero type. He has a darker past, as we saw from the introduction of him breaking into and robbing a place. Part of what stuck with me about him is his smile. It is probably one of the creepiest smiles I have seen in a game. Whether this was by choice or not I now see it as a fitting look. Even more fitting of the character is the fact he isn’t a naive trainer getting his first Pokemon. He is already someone familiar with them and has two Pokemon from the start already. He has an Umberon and Espeon.
The story follows around Team Snagem. And if their name gives anything away, it is probably the fact that they have been stealing Pokemon. With the very device that was taken from them in the opening sequence. After stealing them, the organization has been turning captured Pokemon into Shadow Pokemon. This resulted by closing off their hearts, incidentally making them more powerful. Shadow Pokemon do not seem different to everyone. Our protagonist partners up with a girl who can see and pin-point these corrupted Pokemon.
When you find them, you are able to catch them like you would normal Pokemon. As a matter of fact, you will only catch Shadow Pokemon in this game. So instead of filling up a Pokedex, you go about just getting all the shadow Pokemon that are out there. Another point is that these shadow Pokemon are only caught in trainer battles. Random and wild encounters are not present in this game.
Needing to capture the Pokemon in battles is a part that I found amusing. I remember playing the handhelds, and at least once out of naivety when I was younger, try to throw a Poke Ball during trainer battle because I wanted the Pokemon that the random trainer had. This game it is required, and some of the oddity in the dialogue comes from the trainers not really reacting when you take their Pokemon sometimes.
Shadow Pokemon can then be used. They will only have the Shadow Rush move at first. Through using them and having them with their hearts will begin to open and allow access to more of their abilities. Shadow Rush, while a strong move, has a recoil and the use of it can cause Pokemon to enter Hyper Mode. In this mode, the critical chance of Shadow Rush increases. However, trying to use any other move may result in them not listening to the order. Items cannot be used on a Pokemon in Hyper Mode.
Pokemon Colosseum shook up the franchise with a new and interesting story. Even after the main story is done, more areas are unlocked and you are given the chance to catch any of the remaining Shadow Pokemon. There are 48 in total. Once that is complete, even another portion of content is unlocked. As I said at the beginning of this article, this is still one of my favorite Pokemon stories as it brings variety to the franchise.