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Pokemon Snap (Nintendo 64) artwork

Pokemon Snap (Nintendo 64) review


"Pokemon Snap. These two words have caused children to shiver with fear. They have ruined the reputation of the Pokemon franchise and caused, I’m sure, numerous depression cases across the country. Pokemon Snap, released on June 30th, 1999 in the U.S. was a new concept was to test an original concept for Pokemon; photography. The game was designed to give kids (hence the game’s E rating) the experience of photographing pokemon. However, this “genius” scheme soon went immediately downhill. In ..."



Pokemon Snap. These two words have caused children to shiver with fear. They have ruined the reputation of the Pokemon franchise and caused, I’m sure, numerous depression cases across the country. Pokemon Snap, released on June 30th, 1999 in the U.S. was a new concept was to test an original concept for Pokemon; photography. The game was designed to give kids (hence the game’s E rating) the experience of photographing pokemon. However, this “genius” scheme soon went immediately downhill. In this review, I will assess all the aspects that contribute to a gamer’s experience and give my thoughts on each individual category.

The graphics of Pokemon Snap is the first aspect of the game I would like to discuss. Good graphics, most gamers would say, are one of the most important aspects that go into making a good video game. In this game, the player enters a cart, and goes along snapping pictures of different pokemon encountered on the ride. The concept of the game, photography, fails alone in this category. How is a gamer expected to take quality pictures of pokemon when it’s nearly impossible to make them out, or get them to come within phototaking range? The game works with the better pictures getting more points, however, the powerful and rare pokemon are always too far away to snap even a decent picture. Snapping a photo of a Pidgey that looks like a flying duck surely won’t get you too many points at the end of your little ride.

Not to mention, catching 2-D pokemon is never too fun. Perhaps the game would be more entertaining and grasping if the pokemon actually came into your vision, thus allowing you to take higher quality photos. Perhaps if the pokemon were actually designed in the right shapes and color tones the game would be more realistic. There are numerous flaws in the graphics, however there are one or two positives. The pokemon in the game who are “flying” type actually do fly, “water” pokemon actually are in the water, etc. This makes the game relatable to the pokemon games such as Pokemon Red, Blue, and Yellow, which is a positive for players familiar with the franchise.

The next thing I will be discussing is, in my opinion, the most important part of a videogame, the gameplay. As I have already discussed, the game is designed for players to photograph their favorite pokemon. You’re given a camera and go along for a ride in a cart, take pictures, and then have them assessed by Professor Oak getting points for the quality of your photos. The only replay value in the game is playing on the two different tracks; the beach and the cave. Otherwise, each time you start a new ride the game is the exact same. The pokemon make the same movements, are in the same spots, and the tracks are exactly the same. This causes the player to not desire to play the game over and over again if they were foolish enough to buy the game in the first place.

Now to the points system. When Professor Oak gives you the points you collected from your last run, these points go into your point bank. However, this little bank is completely pointless. There are no items to buy, nothing to spend these points on. The game would have some potential if these points could unlock new pokemon, new tracks, or serve any purpose at all, however, the only things these points do is pile up in your collection box. This game has little to none replay ability and the concept of this game is completely pointless due to flaws in its creation.

Looking back on this game, I have no fond memories. I remember the hour or two I spent playing and wishing I could have something better. I do not recommend this game to any pokemon fan or video game fan in general. The game was boring, pointless, and supplied no fun. I wasted five dollars on the game, and, frankly, would give anything to get my refund. Pokemon Snap ruined the Pokemon franchise’s streak of great games and tarnished their record for giving their gamers a great, fun gaming experience.

Overall, I would recommend you to stay as far away from Pokemon Snap as possible. The game had horrible graphics and gameplay that provided a negative gaming experience rather than a positive one. After playing the game as an older and more experienced gamer, I fail to see the point of Pokemon Snap and its creation. Seeing 2D Pokemon too far away to take quality photos for three minutes does not provide me with entertainment. I feel as though this is one of the worst games for the Nintendo 64 console and easily the worst game of the Pokemon franchise.


Rating: 3/10

bostonfuse51's avatar
Community review by bostonfuse51 (February 16, 2008)

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