Pokémon Rumble U Is Much Better With NFC Toys. Weird.

The coolest feature of Pokémon Rumble U only works with the collectible figures purchased separately from the downloadable title, making it a mediocre game with optional improvement. Interesting idea.

In Pokémon Rumble U, players can collect and battle up to 649 different Pokémon by picking up capsules in the game's various story arenas. Power levels seem to be determined by the level they're captured on, and skills are predetermined.

The physical figures, on the other hand, can be modified extensively. Using coins earned in the game, which would otherwise just sit there, doing nothing, players with physical toys can swap out powers, raise levels and change special traits. Stats are saved to each toy, so if I were to bring my Lucario to a friend's house, he'd still be a super-powered badass.

So I have seven Pokémon I am invested in (in more ways than one), and another hundred and change I could care less about.

Nintendo calls them optional, but the NFC figures add a level of depth and engagement to an otherwise shallow experience. If you're planning on playing Pokémon Rumble U, they are essential.


    Couldn't care less. *grumblegrumblegetoffmylawn*

    Anyone taking bets on how long it will be before someone reverse engineers the protocol between the toy and the Wii? Could make an Android app that uses a phone's NFC capabilities to emulate the toy.

      I'm surprised this has not happened yet, for this or Skylanders (unless I missed the article about it).

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