When the original Pokemon Gold, Silver and Crystal, you were able to buy an strange cross between a pedometer and a Tamagotchi virtual pet known as the Pokemon Pikachu 2 GS. This digital device could be clipped to your belt and would count the number of steps you took. These steps could then be traded in for “watts.” Watts had two purposes. The first was that they could buy presents for the virtual Pikachu pet contained within the PP2GS so that it would like you more. The second was that you could trade the watts through the PP2GS’ infrared port. It would then communicate with the Game Boy Colour’s port and then allow you to download items through Pokemon GSC’s “Mystery Gift” option. Well with the release of Pokemon Heart Gold and Soul Silver, you’ll discover that there is a pack-in with your copy of the game known as the Pokewalker. This device builds off the premise of the PP2GS and expands to a degree no one had ever thought of before. Join us as we give you some information on this strange little bonus item and how you can use it to maximize your experiences in Pokemon Heart Gold and Soul Silver.
The core aspect of the Pokewalker is the same as the Pokemon Pikachu 2 GS. However, with the Pokewalker, you aren’t stuck with just Pikachu. At anytime you can transfer a single Pokemon into the Pokeball shaped disc. Then as you walk around, the pedometer aspect of the Pokewalker takes effect and it slowly raises your Pokemon’s happiness as well as your level. Let’s say you’re going on a ten mile hike. Transfer in say, a Scizor, and then strap the Pokewalker to your pants. By the time you get back you’ll happy a significantly more powerful Pokemon as well as one with a high happiness rating. This is an excellent way to evolve those Pokemon like Chansey into Blissey or Igglybuff into Jigglypuff.
Gotta Catch ‘Em All?
The biggest difference between the Pokewalker and the Pokemon Pikachu 2 GS is that not only will you be walking around while wearing the Pokewalker, but your Pokemon will be walking too! You’ll have over two dozen locations to eventually choose from, but you’ll have to unlock most of them by playing through Pokemon Heart Gold and Soul Silver.
Once you have chosen your location you can use Watts to trigger Pokemon battles within the Pokewalker. If you don’t have enough Watts, you won’t get to battle. Once you initiate battle, you are given a choice of four pieces of grass. You must choose one and, if you choose correctly, a Pokemon will pop out and you’ll be able to battle. You’ll only have two battling options in this case: Attack and Dodge. Both are self-explanatory. Once you’ve weakened the opposing Pokemon, you can try to catch it. You can only store three Pokemon on your Pokewalker before having to send some back to your main game, so you might have to be choosy with what you keep.
One of the more interesting things about these battles are that some Pokemon can ONLY be caught through the Pokewalker while others might have different and/or unique moves only available on the Pokewalker. One example is the Yellow Forest Pokewalker area, which can only be obtained by downloading it through a Wi-Fi connection. This special location only contains Pikachu Pokemon, including rare Flying and Surfing Pikachu. Of course they’ll be a bit hard to catch, but how fun will it be to have one of those, right?
Exclusive Pokewalker Pokemon
These Pokemon can only be found and captured within the Pokewalker unless you transfer Pokemon over from Pokemon Diamond, Pearl and Platinum. Numbering is based on the National Dex.
Another neat option in the Pokewalker is the Itemfinder aspect. Each use of the Itemfinder costs three Watts. When you choose to activate the Itemfinder, you are then given a choice of six bushes. You have to pick one of those bushes, and hopefully an item will appear. Items have a common, uncommon and rare frequency but as some of the rare items are exceedingly valuable it’s definitely worth using three measly Watts to try and get one of them. For example, if we stay with the previous example of the Yellow Forest, a common item would be something mundane like a Big Mushroom. Rare items however run the gambit from a Thunderstone to the all-important (for Pikachu) Light Ball. You can store up to ten items of the Pokewalker so if you can’t get the item you are looking for right away, at least you have plenty of chances before you have to transfer items over.
One of the classic aspects of Pokemon is the ability to trade things with your friends, usually Pokemon. Trading can now be done through the Pokewalker as well. As long as you and a friend have one, you can swap items between the two of you. Unlike trading Pokemon where sometimes you have to unlock an in-game event in order to swap Pokemon from a previous title, The Pokewalker will let you trade even if you have a course your friend doesn’t and vice versa.
When you hook your Pokewalker back up to the DS and your cart of either Pokemon Heart Gold or Soul Silver, you’ll be given diary entries similar to what you had in Pokemon Fire Red and Leaf Green. These diary entries will tell you what Pokemon you captured, what items you found, who you traded with and more. These entries don’t add anything to the game per say, but is a cute little piece of fluff that help to further integrate the Pokewalker with the Heart Gold and Soul Silver experience.
It’s wonderful to see the Pokewalker as a free pack-in when you purchase Pokemon Heart Gold or Soul Silver. The original Pokemon Pikachu 2 GS was between ten and twenty dollars, so this is a great addition to the overall package. Much like with how Pokemon Fire Red and Leaf Green came with Wi-fi adapters if you purchased the games new, this is a wonderful way to reward gamers for purchasing these titles instead of doing something just for pre-orders. This was people who can’t buy a game on release day still get a little something extra besides the game itself. I love how the Pokewalker is more than just a pedometer and Mystery Gift addendum this time around. I think I’m most happy about how much easier it is to get a Spiritomb here than in Pokemon Diamond and Pearl. I mean, if you didn’t have a Wi-Fi connection, you pretty much couldn’t get it. Now everyone has an opportunity and I think that’s awesome. Best of all the Pokewalker is something that rewards you for doing exercise. Whether you walk to a friend’s house, go on a bike ride, or get on a treadmill at the gym, you’ll not only be improving your Pokemon, but your own body as well. Very cool.
Below is a list of all the Pokewalker courses (albeit with Japanese course names) with a list of the Pokemon you can catch on them.
Beyond the Sea
Night’s Sky Edge