|Pokemon XD: Gale of Darkness
|Developed by||Genius Sonority|
|Australia||November 19th, 2005|
|Europe||November 18th, 2005|
|Japan||August 4th, 2005|
|United States||October 3rd, 2005|
The second RPG Pokémon game released on home console. Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness is the sequel for Pokémon Colosseum, taking place in the same region of Orre but with a brand new protagonist and a new story. Just like its predecessor, It features amazing graphics and sound effects, even though it is said to have recycled animation and models from Pokémon Colosseum.
Gameplaywise, The game tried to cover the lacunas of Colosseum by introducing many new features such as the Poké Spots which allow the player to lure and catch wild Pokémon, and the purification machine that provides a faster purification process. The game still uses the same battle mechanics, with most battles being two versus two style. Furthermore, the story is a little similar, with the goal of finding the shadow Pokémon and purifying them, all while facing the evil team Cipher.
Official DescriptionExperience The Extra Dimension!
Using Shadow Pokémon, an evil organization has unleashed a sinister plot of world domination. With Eevee as your companion, and with the help of numerous friends along the way, you must fight against terrible foes and race against time to snag a purify the Shadow Pokémon and save the world!
Engage in fantastic battles with your friends! By connecting with a Game Boy Advance—using a Nintendo GameCube Game Boy Advance cable—you can import and battle with your Game Boy Advance Pokémon from Pokémon Emerald, FireRed, LeafGreen, Ruby and Sapphire!
Plot / StoryPokémon XD: Gale of Darkness starts out with the cinematic of the S.S Libra ship being attacked by Team Cipher's Helicopters and high jacked with the help of a shadow Lugia. Next, the protagonist Michael finds himself in a battle simulation, conducted as a test to help Professor Krane and Lily in the Pokémon Lab HQ. The first task the player is given, is to retrieve his P★DA from his room and look for his sister Jovi. Once the task completed, Michael returns to the Pokémon Lab HQ and receives the Snag Machine but suddenly Cipher goons show up and kidnap Professor Krane.
Michael is then sent to Gateon Port to retrieve a crucial missing part for the Purification Chamber. There, he encounters Mr. Verich who protects his sister from a thug named Zook. Upon returning to the Pokémon Lab HQ, the protagonist learns about Agate Village where Pokémon can be purified. He eventually heads there, meets the leader Eagun and gets allowed to use the purification stone. Michael then starts his quest to defeat the evil organization Cipher. He defeats the first Cipher Admin called Lovrina at the Cipher Lab and saves Professor Krane, he then battles the Cipher goons that took over ONBS.
Later on, the protagonist hears that Cipher also took over Phenac city, so he heads there and defeats Snattle, the second Cipher Admin. Michael gets a request to save a Pokémon on the S.S Libra. He successfully heads there, yet the Pokémon escapes and he gets attacked by Team Snagem that knocks him out and steals his Snag Machine. Eventually, the protagonist attacks the Snagem Hideout while battling a load of Snagem goons, then defeats Gonzam their leader and retrieves the Snag Machine.
Surprisingly, Gonzam reveals he has the same goal as Michael and decides to team up with him to take out Cipher. They head to the Cipher Key Lair, where the Michael defeats the third Cipher Admin Gorigan, while successfully shutting down the shadow Pokémon Factory. Upon defating Gorigan, Mr. Verich appears on video, revealing he's Greevil the boss of Cipher who's hiding on Citadark Island.
Michael takes the fight to the last Cipher Hideout. In Citadark Island, he battles the three previous Cipher Admins and Ardos and Eldes who turn also to be Cipher Admins. The final challenge is then to defeat Greevil and his shadow Lugia. After the Cipher Mastermind is defeated, he surrenders along with Ardos to the Police while Eldes escapes. Michael can now participate in the Orre Colosseum where plenty of characters will reappear for battle, like the five Cipher Admins and Team Snagem and its Leader Gonzap.
The Bad Guys
Team Cipher: An evil organization that corrupts the hearts of Pokémon, closing them and turning them into shadow Pokémon. Its ultimate goal is world domination. In the game, they're based in Cipher Lab, Cipher Key Lair and Citadark Isle.Team Cipher members :
- Team Cipher Peons : Trainers that chose the evil path and follow the orders of the Team Cipher Admins. The player will encounter a lot of them during the game.
- Lovrina: The first Cipher Admin the player encounters, at the Cipher Lab. A narcissistic and hyperactive trainer who prefers beautiful looking Pokémon. She runs the Cipher's Research and Development Team with the goal of creating the perfect shadow Pokémon that's immune to purification. She reappears in the Citadark Isle and Orre Colosseum.
- Snattle: The second Cipher Admin the player will encounter, at Phenac City. An egocentric man who prefers Pokémon with celestial shapes. His goal is to grant Team Cipher political power by becoming the Governor of Orre. He reappears in Citadark Isle and Orre Colosseum.
- Gorigan: The third Cipher Admin the player encounters, at the wreck of S.S Libra then at the Cipher Key Lair. A weird trainer that has the appearance, moves and acts of an ape. He favors Humanoid looking Pokémon. He reappears in Citadark and the Orre Colosseum.
- Ardos: First encountered at Gateon Port, when he saves Michael's sister. He's one of Cipher Admins, Eldes twin and Greevil's son. He prefers fast Pokémon and has a high sense of loyalty toward Cipher, he even suggested blowing up the whole Citadark Isle, despite the number of casualties, just so that Cipher could survive. He managed to escape at the end and reappears in Orre Colosseum.
- Eldes: The second Greevil son and the twin of Ardos. He's encountered first in Gateon Port, then in Mt. Battle and finally at Citadark Isle as one of Cipher's Admins. Unlike the rest of the Admins, he isn't evil and is troubled by Cipher's motives. He stopped his brother and father from blowing Citadark Isle and even convinced his father to surrender to the police.
- Greevil: The Grand Master of Team Cipher and the Mastermind behind all Cipher's plans. He's first encountered at Gateon Port, with his bodyguards who turn to be his sons. He appears a second time on TV when Michael defeats Gorigan, and reveals he's Cipher's boss. His final appearance is in Citadark Isle, where he gets defeated by Michael and gets his Ultimate Shadow Pokémon Lugia snagged. The defeat breaks him morally, and he listens to his son Ardos advice and surrenders to the police.
Team Snagem : A criminal organization that once allied with Cipher that gave them the Snag Machine, allowing them to steal Pokémon from their trainers. Team Snagem doesn't make much appearance in Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness. In fact, Michael only encounters them twice when the Snagem grunts steal his Snag Machine and when he attacks their Hideout, which seems to be their only base in this game.
Team Snagem members :
- Snagem Grunts : Evil trainers that seek to unleash terror, stealing Pokémon and doing mischievous acts. Michael encounters three of them named Wakin, Biden and Agrev on the S.S Libra, who unfortunately knock him out with sleeping powder and steal his Snag Machine. More are battled in the Snagem Hideout.
- Gonzap: The leader of the Snagem Team. A muscular man with large mustache and scars covering his body. He's encountered at the Snagem Hideout when the player tries to recover the Snag Machine. After his defeat, he cooperates with Michael and helps him infiltrate Cipher Key Lair. He also reappears at the Orre Colosseum.
Can I catch 'em all?Similarly to Pokémon Colosseum, Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness focuses on catching Pokémon in their shadow form. Yet, it also offers the new ability of catching wild ones with the Poké Spots. Within the game, the player can Snag up to 83 shadow Pokémon, with the last one unlocked after snagging 82. Here's how to get some of the others:-
- Johto Starters can be obtained by defeating 100 trainers at Mt. Battle with the same party. The players get to choose only one, and can redo the challenge to earn the 2 others.
- Elekid can be obtained by trading a purified shadow Togepi to Hordel.
- Miditite, Shuckle and Larvitar are traded by Duking for rare Pokémon from the Poké Spots.
- Both Munchlax and Bonsly from the next generation appear in the game yet they cannot be obtained. Bonsly is even in the games trailer.
Purification TechniquesPokémon XD: Gale of Darkness offers two options to purify Pokémon: whether the player uses the Purification Stone or the Purification Chamber.
To purify Pokémon with the Purification Chamber, the player has to put 1-4 Pokémon in a circle and the shadow Pokémon in its center. The Pokémon placed in the circle and their number will affect the tempo of the circle and thus provide a faster notification. The player can go back to doing the quest and they'll be notified, once the shadow Pokémon is purified.
On the other hand, purifying Pokémon with the Stone take a different process. First the player has to make the shadow Pokémon's Heart Gauge reach a certain level, before taking it to the stone in Agate Village to purify it. Upon reaching the purification point within the Heart Gauge, the message " The Pokémon's heart is about to open! Undo the final lock!" is displayed, when a Pokémon is ready to be purified.
There are several factors that can help reach the purification point of the Heart Gauge:
- Walking anywhere while having the Pokémon in party.
- Use it in battle.
- Calling the shadow Pokémon out during battles, once it reaches its Reverse Mode.
- Using Cologne Massages, bought at the Agate Village, on the Pokémon
Purifying Pokémon with the Stone grants them the accumulated exp of the player, while purifying using the Chambers grants no exp, but is a way faster process.
Poké SpotsThe new feature added in Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness, which allows the player to catch wild Pokémon. There are three different Poké Spots in which the player can put snacks as bait for Pokémon. Once a Pokémon takes the bait and appears, the player will be notified. Sometimes, an old lady's Munchlax eats the snacks instead and the lady gives the player 10 Poké Snacks as reconciliation. There are 8 catchable Pokémon in total with the Poké Spots: Hoppip, Phanpy, Surskit, Zubat, Aron, Wooper, Sandshrew, Glidar and Trapinch. Some of these Pokémon can be traded with Duking for rare Pokémon.
Integration with other titlesLike the previous game, Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness can be linked to other GBA games too. In fact, it can be linked to all the GBA Pokémon games, allowing the trade of all the different Pokémon in between them. Establishing links with other games also allows the use of a battle mode in which players can duel each other.
VideosCheck out these videos relating to Pokemon XD: Gale of Darkness. The videos include TV Commercials, the current world record holding speed run of the game and the opening cinematic/intro.
The official trailer for Pokemon XD: Gale of Darkness
A Japanese TV Commercial for Pokemon XD: Gale of Darkness
A video of A Pokemon XD: Gale of Darkness speed run by Ry Guy, the current world record holder.
Trivia & Facts
- The highest level snaggable Pokémon in game is Dragonite, while Lugia is second with the level of 50, despite it being very important in the storyline.
- Pokémon Colosseum and Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness are the only RPG Pokémon games, after Pokémon Crystal's release, that doesn't allow the choice of player gender.
- If a Pokémon is traded from this game to a GBA game then to Pokémon Colosseum, the Pokémon would have the info "met in a distant land" despite the fact that the two games take place in the same region Orre.
- Before its release Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness was said to be a whole different game and not a sequel to Pokémon Colosseum, yet it was quite the opposite.
- The only Pokémon Console title to have a Box Mascot.
- Some fans actually believed that the last evil boss in Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness was meant to be Wes from Pokémon Colosseum, yet it was changed because it gave a dark aspect to both games.
- The "XD" in the game title actually means Extra Dimension. It also a reference to XD001, the shadow Lugia.
Sales figuresPokémon XD: Gale of Darkness turns out to be quite a commercial success, selling nearly 1.27 million of copies, of which : 0.79m in North America, +0.19m in Europe, nearly 0.31m in Japan and around 0.03m in the rest of the world.
Review scoresDespite getting some critics about the large amount of recycled animations and features from the previous game, Pokémon XD: Gale of Shadow was quite well received, getting good scores on major review sites. Let's take a look at those scores:
- Greg Mueller of GameSpot reviewed the game and scored it 6.9/10, which equates to "fair" on the GS scale.
- Craig Harris from IGN liked the game but was disappointed with how it copied a lot of stuff from the previous one. He scored it 6.8/10, the equivalent of "Okay" on their scale while stating : "This GameCube sequel isn't all that much different to Pokemon Colosseum apart from a couple of minor tweaks and additions to the graphics and gameplay."
- The game also reached 66.91% on GameRankings, a good score so far.
Media & DownloadsOfficial Artwork Gallery from Pokemon XD: Gale of Darkness
Box Art from Pokemon XD: Gale of Darkness including numerous regional variations + editions
Screenshots from Pokemon XD: Gale of Darkness