On Saturday, Nintendo Life was lucky enough to get a sneaky preview of Nintendo and Genius Sonority's most bizarre upcoming release, Learn With Pokémon: Typing Adventure. The version we demoed was the Japanese version, Battle & Get! Pokémon Typing DS, complete with the Japanese Bluetooth keyboard add-on.
The aim of Pokémon Typing is to type as quickly as possible the names of the Pokémon that hop towards you. If you successfully type out the critter's name, you will 'capture' them with a Typing Ball; the further you play into the game, the rarer the 'mon become, so keep a look out for Reshiram and Zekrom in the latter stages. There are 60 different areas for you to play through, each with different types of Pokémon living there and over 400 of the creatures for you to discover. At the end of some levels you may come across a boss battle, which sees you manically typing different letters and quickly spelling out the rare Pokémon's name in order to catch it. You will be awarded a score and a medal at the end of each level, which marks how quickly and correctly you can touch-type, and there are 180 medals in total for you to collect.
While the gameplay may seem rather straight forward at first, it's quite odd how entranced you can become rapidly tapping keyboard letters as different Pokémon come hurtling your way. However, the gameplay is never difficult (even when playing the Japanese version) and is quite clearly targeted towards helping younger children learn how to type, not for those who are already well-acquainted with keyboards.
The Nintendo Wireless Keyboard, meanwhile, is a great size; just small enough to pack in a bag and carry about with you, but large enough to fit all of the standard QWERTY keys in neatly without being squeezed too close together. The keyboard also feels quite well-built, is compatible with other Bluetooth products and also looks the part in ice-white, but there is also a black keyboard edition. The complete Pokémon Typing bundle also comes with the Nintendo DS Compact Stand, so that you can keep your DS or 3DS (as well as their XL counterparts) still, while you type away and catch some 'mon.
If you are a huge Pokémon fan who could use some help with your keyboard skills, then this game should be a fun and educational experience. However, if you're just a Poké-maniac, who simply needs to own every game, it might be more worthwhile importing the region-free Japanese version, as then you will be able to learn over 400 different Pokémon names in Japanese too!
Learn With Pokémon: Typing Adventure will be available in Europe on 21st September. You can alternatively import the Japanese version, Battle & Get! Pokémon Typing DS now from sites such as play-asia, at around $39.99 or £25.76 for the white keyboard edition or $69.40 or £44.70 for the black edition.