Ranking the Pokemon Video Games

New artwork for the remakes of Ruby and Sapphire coming out this week. (Source Unknown)

New artwork for the remakes of Ruby and Sapphire coming out this week. (Source Unknown)

We all have things we carry with us from our childhoods. If you’re allowed to have your Disney films, I am allowed to have the Pokemon franchise.

And it’s a childhood carry-over that I hold very dear to my heart. The first game of the franchise that I ever played was Yellow version, way back in 1999 when the entire concept of the games was revolutionary. I’ll never forget waking up before school and laying on the couch, playing Yellow version until I became too afraid of the “Ghost” in Pokemon Tower to play on (never fear, I overcame that and beat the game years later). The game opened up an entirely new universe to my young brain, and it still astounds me that such a vast world can fit in a small cartridge.

That game has since spawned five more “generations” of games, each expanding on elements of the last and adding new things to keep the process fresh. Over the last several years, I have played through the various generations of games in my free time to get an all-around feel of what each story is all about.

Friday marks the release of Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, which serve as remakes of the main third generation titles. The nostalgia factor of these remakes has inspired me to rank-order the generational output of the Pokemon franchise from worst-to-first. It’s something I’ve wanted to do for a long time, and now seems as good as any to do it. Read the rest of this entry »

Album Review: Foo Fighters – “Sonic Highways”

The album artwork for Sonic Highways.

The album artwork for Sonic Highways.

A couple months ago, I wrote a retrospective review of Rush’s Signals album posing a question, and it’s the same question I’m going to ask here: how does a band follow up their most critically and commercially acclaimed album?

The answer, as it has been proven by bands like Rush and countless others before and after them, lies within change. Your best album is typically the greatest realization of who you are as an artist, or as a band, and that opens a door to try even more ambitious things. And that’s where Foo Fighters found themselves after Wasting Light came out three springs ago. Read the rest of this entry »