E3 2010: Hands-on with Pokemon Ranger: Guardian Signs

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Pokemon Ranger Guardian SignsWhile I’m normally not a fan of the Pokemon Ranger DS series, Pokemon Ranger: Guardian Signs lured me in with its cuteness. Maybe it was the fact that the demo involved saving a ukulele playing Pichu which was incredibly adorable. Maybe it was because I could get a Pokemon Ranger notebook if I tried it out. Nonetheless, I played through the demo and was pleased with the result.

The Pokemon Ranger: Guardian Signs demo began with said ukulele pichu being abducted by Pokemon Pinchers. A male pokemon ranger runs up just in time to see it happen, and the villains speed away on what look like hovering segways. I then had 10 minutes to rescue the pichu. This meant battling the three Pokemon Pinchers, encountering wild pokemon and summoning Entei along the way.

The battling and capture mechanics are the same as usual. The pokemon will appear on screen and you must circle it repeatedly with the stylus to convey your feelings of love and peace to it. It will attack while you’re doing so, making you stop so you don’t break your capture tool. If you’re having trouble, or facing multiple pokemon, you can call on one of you pokemon partners to come in and perform a brief attack to help you out.

The legendary summoning is new to the Pokemon Ranger series. While running around, I encountered some boulders. It was Entei time. By drawing a symbol on the screen, Entei would appear and I could ride him around. He could smash into boulders if I double-tapped directly behind them, and if I tapped him he would roar. Roaring is good for scaring out certain wild pokemon.

While I’ve never really gotten into Pokemon Ranger before, I was really impressed with my time spent with the Pokemon Ranger: Guardian Signs demo, and am looking forward to checking it out when it comes out in Fall 2010.

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