Welcome to a NEW running article feature of the site, “PJ Plays”.  I’ll be trying out pokemon side games from the past and present and writing about them as I play (instead of a review-style overview).  So join me as I tackle Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky.  I’ve never played any of the previous Dungeon installments so even though this is the 5th game it’ll be an entirely new experience for me (a disclaimer because I can’t complain about how similar it was to the last games).  Even though I don’t have previous experience I do know a lot about the games since I’ve covered them from a news aspect.  Find the article after the break!

Starting Explorers of Sky you have to take a personality quiz which determines what pokemon you become in the game.  I answered these all very honestly and ended up getting the Green Ribbon and the ‘Brave’ personality rating which resulted in me being… a pikachu.  Luckily I am in tune with myself enough to know I am NOT a pikachu type of guy.  I am a grass pokemon at the very least.  Because I was unable to cope with being an electric rodent I had to look up a guide to get the result I wanted, turtwig.  That means, yes, the webmaster of this site is a borderline cheater.  Sorry.

After getting the result I wanted and choosing my partner, cyndaquil, I started in on the actual game.  Washing up on a beach with amnesia is hardly a new plot device and was kind of boring.  Cyndaquil seemed to be having some sort of trouble in front of a scary looking Wigglytuff shaped building and then discovered me lying on the sand (I was near death… exhausted and dehydrated I probably would have died had he not come along).  Soon after waking me up I encountered the first two villains of the game… Koffing and Zubat, who were out to steal cyndaquil’s prized possession (a piece of rock).  This led to the first “dungeon” I got to explore after agreeing to help the poor fire pokemon.

Inside the dungeon I was amazed that this was a DS game.  The screenshots of the game didn’t do justice to the absolute blandness of the 2D backgrounds.  It is all so empty and walking around felt like a chore (certainly didn’t feel like “exploring”).  The new type of battle system was pretty easy to get used to, but the top screen being used for some control instructions seems like some major wasted space.  I think that may be temporary for this tutorial area though.

One question that did occur to me however was “Why are all these pokemon here gunning for me?”.  In the main series of games it’s generally accepted that if a human is going to walk through an area with wild pokemon in it a few might jump out.  The games and anime generally paint a picture full of harmony though when pokemon are alone together.  Not in this world apparently as I was chased around the dungeon by a few shellos, kabuto, and others.

After beating the dungeon I agreed to form a team with cyndaquil and we’re now known as “Team Minions” (in honor of all my minions here).  I ended my first play session when I went to sleep in what looked like big bird’s nest.  The gameplay hasn’t engaged me yet, but I’ve already made up my mind to get through the game no matter what.  Wish me luck!

<3 pokejungle

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Paul has run PokéJungle Network for 10 years. He started the site on free hosting while he was in middle school, but now maintains it on a dedicated server. He recently graduated college with a major in Communication Studies focusing on journalism and a minor in Japanese. He resides in Tokyo, Japan and enjoys eating curry daily.
  • Miltos

    Very intresting indeed.Keep it up!

  • Hey PJ, I just finished playing this game a while ago, actually, and there are just a couple of things I’d like to tell you about it. (Don’t worry I won’t give any story spoilers ;D )

    Anyway, I think you’ll come to like the game and hopefully you’ll soon understand why they call it “exploring”. (Basically because it’s necessary to explore many different places) It’s not as boring as it seems, and you’ll find out that their is SO much strategy involved in this game, right down to how you move to how much you move, and so on. Also, once you continue to progress in the story, it’ll only be a little bit from where you are now, you’ll understand the significance of the Wigglytuff building and the “piece of rock”, as they are more important than they may seem. Finally, you should soon understand why all of the pokemon in the dungeons are gunning for you, it makes sense, don’t worry.

    One more thing, the story may seem bland at first, but it gets into a much more exciting story later on, with plot points that seem to be a little more serious than some of the main series games. I think you will also like the fact that you can make some choices in the game, because you are given options a lot of the time, and it makes it seem more personal. (Also, if you don’t like the thing you see on the top screen when you are in a dungeon, the do this. In a dungeon, open up the menu, go down to options, and you will see that their are many things you can change to make your exploring much easier and to your taste.) Hopefully, this rant will help you a little, and didn’t spoil anything. (I am SOOO sorry if I did) I hope you have fun with the rest of the game, and I look forward to the rest of your articles on this game. If you have any questions, just ask me and I’ll do my best to answer them spoiler-free and as short as possible. Happy playing! 😀 (and sorry about the rant, I REALLY like to write 😛 )

  • Chardan

    Nice article, make sure you keep it going. I might just pick up this game myself too, since I only played a little bit of the Gameboy version on a ROM (which wouldn’t let me save). I realise that graphically, the game isn’t really up to much, but still It looks like a nice experience. I guess I’l buy it soon, but I would like to see how you deal with the game before I do.
    I really want to play as a Charmander and have a Treeko pal, that would be shweeeet!

  • masterm

    there is an option that allows u to see the map of dungeon on the top screen

  • zenmaster_pfc

    This article is nice. Side games for a change

  • ami

    Name a recruit after meeeeeee.

  • so pj, did you go on serebii.net to get cheating advice? oh and plz for hecks sake, plz don’t look at how to beat bosses from serebii.net or else you’ll lose minions

    • pokejungle

      No I used GameFAQs :p

  • I like pie

    i really liked all the dungeon games

    • Bristeel

      and pie

      • I like pie

        yep i like pie

  • polo123321

    Go to the options menu and change top screen and waking speed to fast. It will REALLY help. I love these game personally, by the way.

  • I think what I really liked about the Mystery Dungeon games was not only the fact that it’s fun and different, but for once, you got to BE the Pokemon instead of being the one controlling the Pokemon. 🙂 And we got to see Pokemon talking! 😀

  • Bristeel

    Iiii was pikachu 😛 my partener was torchic

  • Meta-Kirby

    The Pokemon are attacking you because the Pokemon world is disrupted by ….well, that’s a story thing, but you learn eventually.

  • When I played I was a Cyndaquil and my partner was a Piplup 🙂

  • Keyblader Jahu

    YAYZ! We’z a gonna convert PJ to a PMD fan~ *dances*


  • This is awesome xD nice pj

  • Sponge

    I really like the dungeon games, even though graphically they’re not great they still have charm….and I do get attached to the characters.

    I really like how there is more storylines even after the main storyline has finished, it’s something the main pokemon games could take note of.

  • Great job, PJ!
    But if you think the top screen is wasted with the controls, you should use controls, and then game options, and then top screen i think, and then you can choose what you want to see at your top screen. I’d choose the one where you see my team (with those kind of pictures), then i think it is less wasted place !

    • Keyblader Jahu

      Agreed! Mine is a dungein map with team stats. :3


  • tsutarja fan

    i beat mystery dungeon:explorers of sky about a few weeks after i got it when it came out.i was a pikachu(i love pika,and no,i did not cheat)and my partner was riolu(lucario pre-evo,dont think i spelled it right).honestly,love the mystery dungeon games,hope there will be a 5th generation version soon!!if they do,i will still be pikachu,and make my partner tsutarja,that would be cool!!

    • Sounds like a plan… As for the spelling. Yup, riolu it is.

      • Also, Black and White only came out a while ago in Japan, and it hasn’t even come out in North America so I wouldn’t expect a PMD for the 5th Gen. any time soon. (But I can’t wait until we do get one 😀 )

  • kslafjsdlk

    Don’t worry PJ, the plot gets better. It’s one of my favorite DS games of all time <3

  • I haven’t played Explorers of Sky yet. I loved the other ones though, so I might give it a try.

  • Rikuo88

    really guys
    ill play any pokemon game just not these ones
    the dungeons are just so mundane and annoying
    its a challenge yes but damn is it boring
    i just put it away and started training my real pokemon for competative play

  • Katreborn24

    I’m a Skitty with a Shinx partner– I didn’t want to be a Bulbasaur (I kept getting bulbasaur, turtwig, and treeko THE WHOLE TIME.)

    I beat the game with a Charmander and Pikachu before, but got bored because I couldn’t beat up one of the “After all the easy stuff” bosses…. I restarted with a kitty….

  • I like pie

    the only way i can beat a mission is with pikachu

  • I like pie

    certain mission i cant say

  • I like pie

    and im a skitty