Reader Review: The Pokéwalker

Do you have what it takes to get a review published right here on Kotaku? Steven does, as he pokés the long road and walks it.

Yes, that’s right, we’re now publishing reader reviews here on Kotaku. This is your chance to deliver sensible game purchasing advice to the rest of the Kotaku community.

And thanks to the very kind chaps at Madman Entertainment, purveyor of all kinds of cool, indie and esoteric film, the best reader review we publish each month will win a prize pack containing ten of the latest Madman DVD releases.

This review was submitted by Steven Bogos. If you’ve played with the Pokéwalker, or just want to ask Steven more about it, leave your thoughts in the comments below.

The Pokéwalker (DS)

The Pokéwalker is the latest instalment in the ever-popular Pokémon franchise from Nintendo and Game Freak. It retails for $69 AUD, but Game Freak has generously decided to pack in a free copy of some Pokémon game with every Pokéwalker!

Loved

You Get Points: Doing stuff in real life sucks. Do you know why? Because there aren’t any points. You don’t unlock the ‘Found out where that smell was coming from’ achievement when you clean your room, and you don’t get +10 to the Mum faction for washing the dishes without being asked. The Pokéwalker finally gives us a way to earn points for doing all of those annoyingly necessary things in meatspace, such as eating and going to work. It really becomes quite addictive, and it’s pretty cool the way that just walking somewhere makes you feel like you’re still playing Pokémon, even though you’re not.

Belt Clip: I love pockets. I keep a lot of stuff in my pockets. Wallet, mobile phone, keys, Swiss army knife etc. Unfortunately, some of these things do not mix. Thankfully, Game Freak has saved me the misfortune of having my keys scratch the crap out of my Pokéwalker by including a belt clip attachment.

Hated

One Level at a Time: Any Pokémon sent to the Pokéwalker can only gain a maximum of one level per ‘walk’. You then have to send them back to the DS to reset it’s counter. While usually this isn’t a problem, on days when you might have a particularly long way to walk, it feels like a bit of a waste, especially if you have a lower level Pokémon in the walker.

No Duels: Can you imagine the disappointment I felt when I linked my Pokewalker with a friend of mine’s, only to see my Pokémon simply ‘play’ with his, and return with some kind of arbitrary gift? The whole draw of Pokémon is the battles, so why the heck can’t I battle my Pokémon against other Pokéwalker users? Digimon was doing this back in 1999, and as the Pokewalker is essentially a fancy Digimon, I was fairly shocked that this obvious feature wasn’t included.

The Pokéwalker is a nifty little gizmo that is sure to please anyone who is a fan of Pokémon. If you’re not a fan of Pokémon, you are probably best off just getting a standard pedometer.

Reviewed by: Steven Bogos

You can have your Reader Review published on Kotaku. Send your review to us at the usual address. Make sure it’s written in the same format as above and in under 500 words - yes, we’ve upped the word limit. We’ll publish the best ones we get and the best of the month will win a Madman DVD prize pack.


Comments

    I completely agree with you.

    Unfortunately my Pokewalker screen is quite scratched after many shifts sharing my pocket with my box cutter/ name tag/ coins :(

    I love your decision to review this as the pokewalker that happens to come with a game. ;) It's so true. Great review, with a clever twist, I'm impressed!

    Hahaha.

    Good review.

    lol i like it :) very humorous.

    Oh. My. God. I WANT ONE!!!

    If I buy 5 more on top of the one I already have and wear all 6 on my belt, does that mean I'm like a real Pokeyman trainer?

    Also, I like that they keep giving us PokeWalker courses. I quite frankly figured they'd stop a month or so after release; once all the "hype" had died down, but here we are, a Big W event finished a few weeks ago and a new PokeWalker course announced.

    I would add one more thing into hated - You're pokemon don't learn new attacks when leveling via pokewalker. This basically means that you have to look up what levels your pokemon gets what and make sure it isn't in the walker for any of the abilities you may use.

    To me this changed the pokewalker from some awesome device to blur the distinctions between reality and the imaginary pokemon universe to nothing more then a gimmick i use for a supply of free ultraballs.

    Hated: Very losable.
    I've lost both of mine. One of them disappeared in the 2 metre path between my kitchen and laundry. :(
    One good thing about that is you can return a pokemon without the walker as a last resort.

      Haven't managed to loose mine yet, but a friend of mine has. Do you use the belt clip?

    Not that this is particularly important but where it says, "You then have to send them back to the DS to reset it’s counter", there shouldn't be any apostrophe in "its".
    Er... sorry... I just hate that mistake!

      Quick - run and tell all your friends you found a grammatical error on the Internet!

      What's that? Oh. Well, go tell your mum. (Say hi from me.)

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