*This Detective Pikachu review is written from the perspective of a big Pokémon fan. Our Detective Pikachu review comes from a neutral perspective and remains spoil free from major plot points. *
Detective Pikachu is on the case!
Pikachu has THAT voice? That’s probably the first reaction from most Pokemon fans upon hearing the cabbie driver voiced Pikachu speak for the first time. A far cry from the normally cute-as-a-button soft-spoken “Pika” voice heard most commonly with the Pokemon franchise. However, having Pikachu talk in this way really adds to the somewhat mature theme and flow of this new and quirky clue gathering Pokemon adventure. You start the game playing as a brand new human protagonist named Tim Goodman, a generic jean wearing, red jacket hoodie main hero who is looking for his father who has gone missing over two months ago.
In the very first opening chapter, you will run into the Danny Devito Esq Pikachu, who it turns out can only speak to Tim, and vise versa. They form a close partnership rather quickly. This comes in handy in solving the cases, as both heroes will need to use each other to talk and gather clues from both human and Pokemon alike. Welcome to Clue meets Pokemon!
Detective Pikachu Review- Gameplay
One thing readers of this Detective Pikachu review might notice right off is the gameplay. The gameplay marks similarity to games such as Carmen Sandiego; you know, those classic school computer room staples that made it seem like you were cheating in school by playing video games. The gameplay here is in many ways similar, by gathering clues and evidence, which automatically gets recorded on your 3DS touch screen menu. You and Pikachu will build a stronger case, and ultimately, using the evidence gathered, figure out exactly what happened in each chapter. Of course being a Pokemon game, all of the crimes to solve are kid-friendly. Some crimes include locating a missing stolen necklace or figuring your way out of a cave.
For younger players, you have the option during your first playthrough to add a hint button. Hints guide you to the proper destination or provide you the correct evidence in order to help solve the case. Some of the older players will probably figure some of the cases out ahead of time. Figuring things out feels rewarding as it means you were paying close attention. And when it comes time to provide the evidence needed, you’ll have everything down to breeze right through to the next chapter. Detective Pikachu still looks like the #25 Mouse type Pokemon everyone knows and loves. But his personality shines a lot more with a human voice. Even with this type of voice, you can’t help but still love him. He can even be somewhat snarky at times!
Detective Pikachu Review – Graphics and Value
One thing to note in this Detective Pikachu review is that the graphics are closely comparable to most of the 3DS Pokemon games. It is sunny and cheerful. The game only comes with 2D formatting. Unfortunately, there is no option for a 3D experience on any of the 3DS systems. The voice acting is plentiful and often, both from the main playable character Tim, as well as Pikachu. Their interactions and relationship with each other are both endearing and charming. You can speak to Pikachu at any time with a button located on the touchscreen. There are moments when Pikachu will call out to grab your attention. This urges you to click the button for fresh clues or commentary leading to hints.
Certain parts of the game require action button reactions, such as pressing A repeatedly or pressing a button at the right moment to proceed forward. Even though this game is called Detective Pikachu, many other familiar characters from the Pokemon universe make cameo appearances throughout. The game has an estimated total playtime at around 8-12 hours, which makes for a nice and unique casual game. Unlike the main Pokemon games where battling is the focus, and losing is plentiful, this game is more adventure driven. So if you fail to guess the clues correctly, you’ll just have to choose again. This makes for a more relaxing overall gameplay experience.
*The person in which submits this review purchased their own copy of the game. We consider this important information to anyone reading our Detective Pikachu review.*