The Pokémon Mystery Dungeon games have always been controversial amongst Pokémon fans due to how different they are from the mainline games. The Mystery Dungeon games rely on roguelike gameplay mechanics to create ever-changing dungeons to explore, a stark contrast to carefully crafted RPGs. Is the gameplay loop of Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Rescue Team DX enough to keep most people entertained? Compared to other dungeon crawlers, I’m not convinced it does.
Unsurprisingly, most of the game takes place in randomised dungeons. Your movement and actions are all turn-based, though this doesn’t have much of an impact until you start to find other Pokémon to battle. The combat lacks the same tactical feel of the RPGs, and exploring the dungeons feels more like a grind rather than being rewarding. As you may have guessed from the beginning, if you weren’t a fan of the original games then you probably won’t care much for the remake. I’d recommend playing through the demo before picking up this game to get a feel of the remake. If you enjoy the demo, you are able to take your save into the full game.
The art style has been reworked to look like something out of a picture-book thanks to the watercolour aesthetic. Given how much nicer the remake looks compared to the original games, there won’t be many people clamouring for the old art style. Performance-wise, the game runs at a locked 30FPS which is incredibly disappointing for what is essentially a Gameboy Advance game. Fortunately, the frame rate isn’t super important in a game like this, and with the addition of Auto Mode, the only thing players will have to think about is their plan of attack.
If you love the Mystery Dungeon games, you’ll be pleased to know Nintendo has tweaked the gameplay enough in the remake to make the game familiar yet different enough to feel the improvements to the formula. Additions like Awakening & Mega Evolution bring back a much-loved mechanic, and the inclusion of Auto Mode helps to speed up some of the monotony of exploring dungeons. Those of you looking for a different type of Pokemon experience that provides much more of a challenge than Sword & Shield, this just might be the game for you.