The game is an enhanced remake of Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire, adding to the third generation of Pokémon games. Much like the games it was based on, the player controls a Pokémon trainer, whose general goal is to traverse around the Hoenn region and conquer a series of eight Pokémon gyms to earn eight Gym Badges and then take on the Elite Four, defeat the Pokémon League Champion and succeed him/her. Like Ruby and Sapphire, the game features the third generation Pokémon, but also adds some second generation Pokémon that were once limited to Pokémon Colosseum. The National Pokédex is also available without trading.
The game follows the same storyline as Ruby and Sapphire, through it adds new elements such as the Battle Frontier, where the player can enter a variety of areas with different Pokémon competitions.
Setting and Plot
The main antagonists that the player faces are Team Magma and Team Aqua, which differs from Ruby and Sapphire in which one team was the antagonist and the other was the protagonist, trying to stop the other team. Instead of one team awakening a legendary Pokémon, both teams succeed in each awakening a legendary Pokémon: Groudon and Kyogre. The two Pokémon do not obey either team and begin fighting, causing the weather to alternate between sunshine and rain. The player must awaken the legendary Pokémon Rayquaza, after which it will swoop down and force the two combatants to stop, returning Hoenn to normal. In the beginning there is 3 Pokémon to choose: Treecko, Torchic, and Mudkip.
Once the player defeats the Elite Four, Norman gives the player the S.S. Ticket for the S.S. Tidal at the player's house. A news bulletin appears and says that a colored Pokémon is in flight through Hoenn. A little later, the player receives a phone call, whereupon he or she will be allowed to enter the Battle Frontier through the S.S Tidal. Latios and Latias can later be found roaming across Hoenn.
- While Emerald's relation to Ruby and Sapphire is similar to that of Pokémon Yellow to Pokémon Red and Blue and Pokémon Crystal to Pokémon Gold and Silver, it also adds much more dramatic changes and revamps than its two predecessors.
- Emerald introduces several changes in battling. In Ruby and Sapphire, 2-on-2 battles were clearly marked, and those trainers would not challenge the player unless the player turned and talked to them. 2-on-2 battles are now more sporadic, with two separate trainers coming together to battle as a pair. Paired trainers will also challenge the player if the player gets too close to them as well. After the Elite Four is defeated, the Gym Leaders may also demand a 2-on-2 rematch with the player. Also, within battle, Pokémon sprites are animated similarly to Crystal, which are usually stationary in its predecessors.
- The game includes many graphical changes. For instance, both Brendan and May now have green outfits. Some routes and areas have also been redesigned with different layouts and more trainers to allow for more random 2-on-2 battles. Also, the layout of the gyms themselves were altered significantly.
- Unlike the previous games, both Team Aqua and Team Magma appeared equally as often in Pokémon Emerald.
- Some Pokémon locations have been changed as well. In Ruby, the player could only capture Groudon, while in Sapphire, the player could only catch Kyogre. In Emerald, both Legendary Pokémon can be caught in separate caverns after defeating the Elite Four. The player can also choose which running Legendary Pokémon to catch (Latios or Latias). Previously, the player could only catch Latios in Ruby and Latias in Sapphire. The Safari Zone also has new areas that allow the player to catch many Pokémon that originated from the Johto region, with most that can be found in this version without having to rely on Pokémon Colosseum or Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness. Also, Emerald features a new area called Altering Cave, where Pokémon in this cave alter when the player uses a Wonder Spot in real life.
- Another change to this game is that when using the PokéNav, the player can now call a trainer that they had already battled previously.
- Wallace is the now the Pokémon League Champion, and replacing his place as Gym Leader would be his mentor, Juan. Steven can be battled at Meteor Falls after obtaining the National Dex. Players can only battle him once.
One of the most significant changes is the addition of the Battle Frontier, an expanded version of the Battle Tower that was present in Ruby and Sapphire. During the game, a man will meet the player frequently. As the player progresses through the game and wins more badges, he will become more impressed. After the player defeats the Pokémon League Champion, the man will call and invite the player to the Battle Frontier.
The Battle Frontier is divided into seven areas, one of the areas being the Battle Tower, and the others, completely new. When the player wins matches, he or she gains Battle Points, which can then be used to purchase prizes. After several consecutive victories, players will face the facility's Frontier Brain, who will be awarded with a Frontier Symbol (The equivalent of a badge).
Tate and Liza
Elite Four and Champion
The Pokémon that appeared in Ruby and Sapphire that were not transferred into Emerald are:
Pokémon Emerald has been generally well received by both gamers and reviewers alike. However, Eurogamer gave Emerald a score of 6/10, praising it for looking better than either Ruby or Sapphire and for having harder and longer gameplay, but criticizing it for being more of a "director's cut" than a half changed update, with most of the game still resembling that of Ruby and Sapphire. The changes and additions in the game have been considered by many to be major ones, and the popularity of the Pokémon franchise has seen the game meet commercial success. Emerald was 2005’s second best-selling game in the United States, and went on to sell 6.32 million copies, making it the third-best selling game for the Game Boy Advance.
- This is the last game in which the classification of an attacking move as "physical" or "special" was tied entirely to its attack type.
- This is the last game in which eggs hatched at Level 5 instead of Level 1.
Title screens and screenshots