Iwata Asks: Pokémon Black and White 2 (Pt.4 of 6)

Hey guys, Kriffix here. Please enjoy the latest translation. Thanks as always to pokejungle for hosting and also a special thanks to NL. Look forward to part 4!

4.Putting a Pokémon Center in the first town.


Iwata: This time round the game is set two years later isn’t it. Since you didn’t start from scratch did you not worry about how to provide a fresh installment, compared to the previous?

Unno: Well… Even a sequel loses its freshness if its just using the same old material. New protagonists, new towns and a new tale; we used these three things to portray things from a different point of view.

Iwata: So it’s traveling the same world from a different point of view.

Unno: Yes. For those who are playing for the first time it’s all fresh and for those who have played the previous instalment can watch the tale unfold once again from a different point of view. The antagonists from the previous game, Team Plasma have split into two factions due to an internal conflict of ideas. Therefore I had great interest in how the individual members of Team Plasma viewed the Unova region and thought “I would like to portray it from a different point of view than last time”.

Iwata: You really wanted to express that this time round didn’t you.

Unno: Yes. I thought it would be great if we could get the players to once again view the tale from a different point of view so that they can find their own answers.

Iwata: Since with each Pokémon game there are fans who are playing for the first time as well as those who have been playing faithfully since its initial release, there is always an effort to maintain the superb balance that, especially in the introductorial explanation part, Pokémon is known for. In what way were you conscious of that when making the game? I mean, a sequel in this form is a first so theoretically there was no example to follow?

Masuda: Yes. It wouldn’t be an overstatement in saying that the desire to make it easy to play for beginners was present in the whole team.

Iwata: But all of you at Gamefreak are so knowledgable on Pokémon so isn’t it hard to figure out how people who are playing for the first time feel whilst making?

Masuda: Yes. Actually we even play through the game putting ourselves in the position of a elementary school, tweaking things as we go along, paying very strict attention to the early stages.

Unno: Also we added a Pokémon Center to the first town, which oddly enough we had never done before.

Iwata: What kind of new sensation has come about by adding a Pokémon Center in the first town?

Unno: Traditionally, If it were an entirely new game we would have to give a lot of lecturing in the beginning, which would lead to having to put time aside to help them get a feel for the world they are in. But since it is a ‘sequel’, by putting a Pokémon Center in the first town, it allows for both people playing for first time swell as well as fans who have been with us a long time to get a feel for the world whilst also having fun, in turn making the plot run smoother.

Iwata: Among those who will play Black and White 2, there are two groups,  those who are playing for the first time or the first time in a long time, and those who played the previous instalment. If you were to try to get across the appeal of Black and White 2 to those people, how would you go about expressing this, Mr.Ishihara?

Ishihara: For those who have played Pokémon Black and White I think it’s really a matter of “Just how different is it?” for them. Stuff like “Oh so the town is like this now!” or “Oh, so these Pokémon are in the first patch of grass!”.

Iwata: The difference this time round is so much bigger than the colour difference that has been seen up until now.

Ishihara: Yes. Whats more, the fact that there is more new game play, a brand new story, and the mystery of just how things will turn out gives the game long-lasting content.

Iwata: This time its a different story, setting and protagonist, so its a ‘new game’ in the the same world from a different view.

Ishihara: Yes and whats more those who played Black and White will probably be surprised by all the appearance of all of the new Pokémon they’ve never seen before. Also I’m sure they’ll be pumped to find just what the connection is between Black and White and Black and White 2.

Iwata: How do you feel about this Mr.Masuda?

Masuda: Even if the the journey is the same, if you take a different route, it’s a whole new experience. Kind of like when you take a different route on the same vacation; the location is the same but the experience is completely new.

Unno: I think there are many fresh surprises for those who played the prequels. And in contrast, there are many points in which those who have not played the prequels will be made to wonder “just what went on in the last game?”.

Iwata: So those who have not played Black or White will suddenly begin to want to play them, won’t they.

Unno: Yes. Having people compare the two is one of the major draws this time round. Please go ahead and do things such as compare the maps and standing in the same place in the same town. There are many small changes prepared for you that will leave you with a grin on your face, so I think it would be nice to have a look around.

P.S. Also a special thanks to everyone out there for all the encouragement. It makes all the difference. We have such a lovely community here, but we’re getting bigger and better everyday so we best enjoy it while we can. Major sites draw in all sorts. Just remember you guys were here supporting it all from the early days! 😀