The classic Pokemon photography game is finally available for the Wii U Virtual Console.
From Game Freak, Nintendo, HAL Laboratory, Inc. and The Pokemon Company, Japan’s “Pocket Monsters” has seen numerous iterations over its 20 year legacy: The handheld RPG series has been going strong with installments on every Nintendo handheld since 1996, though several off-shoots have graced Nintendo’s consoles in the past 2 decades, including Pokemon Pinball for the Game Boy Color, the digital-pet sim Hey You, Pikachu! on the Nintendo 64, Bandai Namco’s 3D Fighter Pokken Tournament in arcades and on the Wii U, and the widely-popular mobile ARG (Augmented Reality game) Pokemon GO.
Hidden somewhere in there is 1999’s Pokemon Snap, a rail-shooter/photography hybrid for the Nintendo 64. Professor Oak tasks players with capturing Pokemon in the wild, but this time on film instead of within Pokeballs. Snap is presented entirely in first-person through a camera, with movement restricted to a preset track through each environment; the cart can be slowed down, but it can’t be manually stopped except for triggered hidden events. Players are rewarded on the overall composition of each photo, including the rarity of the photographed Pokemon and their pose; certain Pokemon can be manipulated into performing tasks by throwing food or Pokeballs in their general direction. Professor Oak will also reward those who discover environmental secrets, such as the Dugtrio in the mountains and the Kingler “forced-perspective anamorphosis” sculpture.
Following its release for the Wii Virtual Console, Pokemon Snap is finally available as a digital title for the Wii U. The current release is still presented in its original 4:3, however players are free to use the Wii U GamePad, Pro Controller, Wii Remote/Wiimote or Wii Remote + Classic Controller.
Pokemon Snap can be purchased through the Wii U eShop or directly through Nintendo online for $9.99.