I cannot idly stand by while this once-great series is turned into a toddler-only playland sideshow. Seriously, Nintendo needs to stop making Pokemon spin-offs aimed at babies (see: Pokemon Snap and Hey You, Pikachu! for Nintendo 64). Channel is the worst offender yet; it's a simplistic bore of a "game" where you watch Pikachu as he watches channel after uninteresting channel ot virtual Pokemon programming over and over. Or, should you tire of the game's "watch as much TV and buy as many Pokemon products as humanly possible" concept, you can also fiddle around with a virtual Pokemon Mini game system or watch Pikachu cavort around your house and the surrounding areas. But none of that is much fun either. My question is, who is this game for? Its main attraction is a Pichu Bros, animated short (that you have to watch over and over) clearly made to enchant kids ages 3 to 5. But then, Channel's got a lot of text and directions those tots won't get, and anyone older will avoid it because it's a baby game. Maybe I'm being too hard on it, but I'd cancel my cable if this Channel came on.
The Bible was wrong. Hell does not look like a giant lake ot fire. Hell looks like Smoochum Shape-Up, a typical program from Pokemon Channel, where you watch a Pillsbury Doughboy in drag grind through hip-slimming aerobics while uttering high-pitched squeals. Unlike Pokemon Snap or Pinball, Channel isn't...well it's not really a game. Playing catch with Pikachu or guessing which Pokemon is behind a curtain is about as interactive as it gets; mostly, you just collect Pokecrap and watch Pikachu watch insanely repetitive, horrifically annoying TV. Do not buy this for yourself or your kids or anyone you know--you do not ever want to be in a room where it's being played.
Here's the deal with Channel--it's not really a game, per se. It's more of a virtual pet crossed with one of those "edutainment" PC deals (like Humongous' Putt-Putt or Pajama Sam titles). Any Pokemon fan over the age of 5 will quickly become very bored, but it's a decent game for parents to play with their small children (tykes will need help with all the reading). The various diversions here are cute, slickly produced, and entertaining, assuming you really, really dig Pokemon.