This edition of Nostalgia Game Review takes a look at Pokemon's third generation. This was the Game Boy Advance generation and the last generation before the physical/special split. It consisted of five GBA games: Ruby, Sapphire, FireRed, LeafGreen, and Emerald. There were also two Gamecube spinoffs in Pokemon Colosseum and Pokemon XD: Gale Of Darkness, with the entire generation of games being released from early to mid-2000's.
Of the three generations before the physical/special split, this feels like the smoothest. You have a wider selection of items to use in battle and each type is expanded upon, from the pokemon themselves to the moves they use. For example, Aerodactyl, a Rock/Flying pokemon, can now learn Earthquake to combat Electric, Rock and Steel-type pokemon. Yes, the physical/special issue is still a thing. But the third generation made the competitive metagame a drastic improvement over its predecessors.
An example of this is the addition of abilities and natures. Abilities are what help (or even hinder) a pokemon during battle. For example, Weezing has Levitate, which erases its Ground-type weakness unless it's hit with Skill Swap. Natures are what boosts a particular area of stats for a pokemon while reducing another stat's growth. An example of this would be Metagross having an adamant nature. Metagross would get a boost in its attack stat, but wouldn't have much growth in its special attack. With this, the concept of EV training was born.
As for the games themselves, the gameplay felt right. The music was quite nostalgic and while the storyline was basic: fight a criminal syndicate, collect eight gym badges, the story offered plenty to play for, especially with endgame content. This is especially true with Pokemon Emerald and the Battle Frontier. Also, the eighth generation of Pokemon (Sword and Shield) wasn't the first to initially cut the roster. This generation did that, which is why I'm going to bet on a Diamond/Pearl remake in the near future.
Aside from physical and special attacks being confined to type, the third generation of Pokemon had everything you could ever want in a Pokemon game. Expanded move sets, great endgame material, and a nostalgic feel. If you don't like the current crop of Pokemon games, give this generation a shot.
My life! Food, sports, school. It's what it is!