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|| Basic info
|| 2 players simultaneous
|| Game Freak
| Part of:
|| Release dates
|| September 12, 2009
| North America:
|| Spring 2010
|| Spring 2010
| South Korea:
| Hong Kong:
Pokémon HeartGold Version (Japanese: ポケットモンスター ハートゴールド Pocket Monsters Heartgold) and Pokémon SoulSilver Version (Japanese: ポケットモンスター ソウルシルバー Pocket Monsters Soulsilver) are paired Generation IV remakes of the Generation II games Pokémon Gold and Silver.
Much like Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen revisited the Generation I story of Kanto, HeartGold and SoulSilver retell the story of Johto, with the player's starting area being New Bark Town. While the games feature several expansions in key areas, the overall plot follows the same direction as the original Gold and Silver. Some aspects exclusive to Crystal are also included. Like FireRed and LeafGreen could link up with Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald to complete the Pokédex by trading regionally-exclusive Pokémon, HeartGold and SoulSilver can link up with Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum to obtain Pokémon unavailable in Johto and Kanto, such as Starly.
Kris, despite being the female counterpart of Crystal's player character Gold, is not included as the female player character, with a new character instead taking her place. Whether she is chosen to be the player character or not, she will still appear in the game, taking a pseudo-rival role similar to the unselected characters of Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald, Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum.
The games were released on September 12, 2009 in Japan, and are scheduled to be released in Spring 2010 in North America and Europe. The Japanese release date is the same day that Pokémon Yellow was released in 1998.
Changes from Pokémon Gold and Silver
- Gold receives a redesign while a new player character replaces Kris.
- All the game's music is rearranged to better utilize the DS's sound capabilities. A key item allows the player to switch back and forth freely between the arranged soundtrack and original chiptune soundtrack.
- The PokéGear has been redesigned. There are a range of skins that can be used and changed at the player's will.
- Much like Kanto's was for its remakes, Johto's Pokédex has been redesigned. Unlike Kanto's remakes, which contained the same regional Pokédex as the originals, the original regional Pokédex for Johto has been slightly altered, including several Generation IV evolutions for Pokémon found in Johto.
- An image of certain locations, similar to that of FireRed and LeafGreen, appears when entering the location. Some of these images change depending on the time of day.
- Team Rocket Grunts are designed like they were in FireRed and LeafGreen.
- Rocket Executives are also redesigned from Generation II, with four separate ones appearing: Athena, Apollo, Lambda and Lance.
- Ho-Oh and Lugia have their own battle music (they used the standard wild battle music in all Generation II games), while the legendary beasts each use a remixed version of their battle theme from Pokémon Crystal.
- Kurt and Apricorns make a return to the series along with their respective Poké Balls. Apricorns can now be carried by the player in their own bag with a new item, the Apricorn Case.
- All former Berry trees have become Apricorn trees.
- Gym Leaders and Elite Four members have animated battle sprites and battle intros (A Re-Styled Version) as in Platinum. Many Gyms have been redesigned as well, some with new puzzles.
- Rock Smash, previously a TM usable on the field in the originals, is now a full-fledged HM as it has been since Generation III. Defog loses its HM status to the returning Whirlpool.
- Ambient sound effects are used with greater frequency than in previous games; for example, running water and the player walking through grass will produce audible noises.
- The Magnet Train's tracks can be seen overground in locations such as Route 32.
- Pal Park is located where the closed Kanto Safari Zone once stood.
- Elm's Lab has an upstairs level.
- Maps have been remade to match the design style used in Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum.
- The Battle Tower west of Olivine City, introduced in Pokémon Crystal, returns, bringing with it an entire new Battle Frontier.
- Two new routes, Route 47 and Route 48, are introduced near Cianwood City. They lead to a new Safari Zone.
- Mt. Silver is much bigger and Viridian Forest is not cut down.
- Cerulean Cave and the Seafoam Islands remain as they were in Generation III (though Blaine still takes part of the Seafoam Islands), allowing the legendary Pokémon that live inside them to be battled. Moltres, formerly found in Victory Road and Mt. Ember, can be found in Mt. Silver.
- The Fighting Dojo in Saffron City takes a role similar to the Battleground.
- All 493 Pokémon are capable of following the player similar to Pikachu in Yellow. CoroCoro showed examples of several examples including Steelix and Wobbuffet. Shininess is apparently retained. In battle, like Yellow's Pikachu, they are sent out from the side of the screen, rather than from a Poké Ball.
- Similarly to the event Shaymin and Regigigas's effect on Platinum, the Pikachu-colored Pichu to be given to those who have pre-ordered tickets to the twelfth movie will unlock an event near the Ilex Forest Shrine featuring the Spiky ear Pichu.
- The Pokémon storage system, bag, party interface and the screen that pops up when pressing the Start or X buttons in the previous games all use the Nintendo DS's touch screen.
- Legendary Pokémon from other regions can be caught in the games. Groudon and Kyogre will appear in SoulSilver and HeartGold, respectively, after the Elite Four, and Rayquaza can be caught in both games once the other members of its trio are brought into the game. Latias and Latios will roam in Kanto.
- Cynthia and Arceus are shown together in a new section of the Ruins of Alph named the Shinto Ruins. This event will allow players to obtain either Dialga, Palkia, or Giratina at level 1.
- Eusine, a major character from Pokémon Crystal who was not in the original Gold and Silver, appears, as do other aspects originally featured in Crystal.
- A new sidequest, the Pokéthlon, will feature ten mini-games that pit Pokémon in athletic competitions. Its system appears to be analogous to that of Contests from previous games.
- Using the Apricorn Shaker, Apricorns can now also be mixed into drinks that increase Pokémon's Pokéthlon stats.
- Berries can be grown portably using the Berry Planter, where the Squirtbottle is controlled via the touch screen to water four Berries at a time. It is currently unknown where Berries can be obtained in the first place, but it appears that they do not grow on the trees where their Generation II counterparts were found, as those are used for growing Apricorns.
- The Running Shoes are obtained in Cherrygrove City and can be permanently selected using the touchscreen menu. The selected item (from pressing Y or SELECT in previous games) is also on the touchscreen. Two items can be selected as opposed to just one.
- The Radio Card for the Poké Gear is compulsory to continue in the game.
- Starter Pokémon from Kanto and Hoenn can be collected from Professor Oak and Steven Stone once certain conditions are met.
- Commemorative Photos can now be taken around Johto and Kanto with the player's partner Pokémon, team, Gym Leaders, and certain notable citizens.
Like the GBA Wireless Adapter that came with FireRed and LeafGreen, HeartGold and SoulSilver will be packaged with a bonus: a Poké Ball-shaped pedometer called the PokéWalker that will link to the games and hold a Pokémon, increasing its experience and happiness as the wearer walks.
As in Pokémon Gold and Silver, the primary Pokémon of the remakes are native to the Johto and Kanto regions. Due to advances in gameplay since the second generation, the regional Pokédex used in Gold and Silver (the New Pokédex) has been updated to include those Pokémon which evolve upon learning a new move. Rather than simply excluding these evolutions (as Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen did with happiness-based evolutions), an improved Johto Dex was established with 256 Pokémon: five more than the New Pokédex.
Similarly to other recently released Pokémon games, Pokémon from outside the regional Pokédex can be captured after defeating the Elite Four and earning the National Dex. Pokémon native to Sinnoh and Hoenn can be found in various methods. Swarms of Pokémon sometimes break out across the Johto and Kanto regions; oftentimes these are not native to either of the regions. Pokémon from other regions can be located by playing one of two special stations on the PokéGear's radio function. There is a channel for Sinnoh Pokémon which plays only on Thursdays; the Hoenn channel only plays on Wednesdays. By having either of these programmes turned on when in tall grass the chance of finding a foreign Pokémon increases. The Bug Catching Contest also hosts, from time to time, Hoenn and Sinnoh Pokémon. They will only appear on Thursdays and Saturdays. The Johto Safari Zone's customization option also allows for the finding of Pokémon from other regions.
In an apparent attempt to remove reliance on Generation III cartridges, starter Pokémon of Kanto and Hoenn can be obtained late in the game from Professor Oak and Steven Stone respectively. Some legendary Pokémon which were not included in the Generation II games, such as Mewtwo, and the more recently released Latias and Latios can also be captured.
As in all main series Pokémon game, there are a number of Pokémon which can be found in one of the paired games, but not the other. A list of these Pokémon follows below.
The touch screen menu, as well as the three starters shown with the player character.
Shiny Pichu HGSS event.png
Gold and Kotone in New Bark Town. "Yeah! How about you show your mom, too?"
Gold vs. Silver. "The passer-by boy challenged you to a battle!"
Inside Professor Elm's laboratory. "Oh, Soul! I've been waiting for you to come!"
- These games will mark the tenth anniversary since the release of the original Gold and Silver Versions for Game Boy Color.
- As remakes, these games have been speculated since the release of Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen.
- The games' engine seems to be based on that of Pokémon Platinum. The reverse happened in Generation III, where Pokémon Emerald was based on FireRed and LeafGreen's engine.
- As Gold and Silver were considered sequels to Red and Green, HeartGold and SoulSilver are thus sequels to FireRed and LeafGreen.
- Like FireRed and LeafGreen, as well, HeartGold and SoulSilver implement features introduced in their namesakes' third version (though the only major change from Red and Green to Blue was the alteration of the catch rates of several Pokémon, itself retained since Blue, whereas Pokémon Crystal featured several notable differences).
- These games were released in Japan almost exactly one year after the Japanese release of Pokémon Platinum, being released the day before the anniversary.
- The font used for the English titles of these games are different than the font that has been used since Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire, while the Japanese logos are still in the same style used since those games. FireRed and LeafGreen also used a different font than the Hoenn games, however, it was still the same color.
- Additionally, the Ho-Oh crest shaped like a heart and Lugia soul are used in the English logos, while the fire and leaf that appear on FireRed and LeafGreen's Japanese logos were not used in the English release.
- These games mark the first time that the English versions are announced before the games themselves come out in Japan.
- Because of HM05's conversion from Defog to Whirlpool, these games are the only games in which all available HMs teach damaging moves.
- Unlike Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen, most Trainer classes keep their DPPt sprites in battle.
- These are the first games in which major characters offer their Pokémon for a trade with the player, with Gym Leaders Brock, Lt. Surge, and Jasmine and Hoenn's former champion Steven Stone offering Pokémon of their specialty type in exchange for another.
- Unlike how FireRed and LeafGreen had their intro the same as their namesakes, HeartGold and SoulSilver have an entirely new intro, using none of the footage from the intro of Gold and Silver. The intro though, uses some music that was in the original.