One of the biggest gaming franchises in the world is definitely Pokémon. Over the years, the notable gaming franchise released some good titles, and most of them got sequels or remasters, just like Pokémon Black and White got two years after the original title’s release. Pokémon Black and White were released in 2010, while the sequel Pokémon Black and White 2 came out only two years later, and this time the Pokémon trainer is exploring the Unova region. In this article, we will compare Pokémon Black and Black 2 and see which is better for you to play.
If you value lore and story progression, you should go for the original Pokémon Black game. However, if you prefer more Pokémon, areas, and overall features of the game, you should definitely play Pokémon Black 2. The original game emphasizes the fifth generation of Pokémon, while the sequel gives players access to all existing Pokémon until that point. In the end, it’s all about preferences – ultimately, you should try both of them.
We will discuss this topic more by comparing two games, shoutout their good and bad sides, and determining if one is more worth playing than the other. If you are interested in this topic, stay with us until the end.
Differences between Pokémon Black and Pokémon Black 2
Before we conclude this topic, we first need to compare these two games. Pokémon Black was released in 2010, while Black 2 got released two years later. Both games were released by the Game Freak and were positively received. However, despite the similar titles and only a two-year gap, Black and Black 2 have many differences, which prompted discussions on Pokémon forums about which game people should play.
Graphics in sequel Pokémon games are usually not that different from the original game, and that is the case here – Pokémon Black 2 looks slightly more “clean” than the original game.
However, other sections of the games are noticeably different, especially locations and gameplay. In the tables below, we present you with different aspects of each game, and then you can decide whether they are factoring into your decisions to play the games.
Let’s start with the locations and aesthetics of the game:
- New locations are available in the newer Black 2, including Aspertia City, Virbank City, Floccesy Town, and more.
- All Gyms got redesigned,
- Game Freak added new battle animations,
- Unova Pokédex has been massively expanded,
- Addition of Pokémon World Tournament.
When it comes to gameplay, Pokémon Black 2 gained a lot of new additions in this section as well:
- A cool feature called Memory Link, which is essentially NPCs acting as “fillers” for what happened between Pokémon Black and White and Pokémon Black and White 2,
- Many more legendary Pokémon are added in the post-game,
- Pokémon Zorua and Zoroark are fully implemented in Black 2,
- TM and HM are in different locations around the Unova region,
- A feature called Hidden Grotto is added to the game, and it allows the player to find Pokémon with hidden abilities or items that were unobtainable before,
Lastly, we will list some of the changes in the storyline section of the Pokémon game that occurred in Black and White 2:
- Move Tutors from Pokémon Platinum are added back in Black and White 2.
- The new starter town is not Nuvema Town but already mentioned Aspertia City,
- New characters replaced the old guard from Pokémon Black,
- With new characters came new antagonists, Team Plasma with an updated roster,
- Pokéstar Studios’ side quest is added to Black 2, where players can participate in different scenarios that include battles and, at the same time, contribute to the Pokémon movie,
- Previously limited areas in Black and White are now available to explore in Black and White 2,
- Iris is the new champion of Unova.
Many changes and additions occurred between Black and Black 2, but were they necessary? Let’s find out!
Which Pokémon game is better?
Now to the hardest question on this list. We listed all additions that were added in Black 2, and there were many; however, some fans didn’t like everything.
The story of Pokémon Black was dark, intense, and really good, especially for new players who rated their character’s journey over most things. The protagonists’ stories and how they need to beware of Team Plasma are really interesting and immersive for Pokémon games. Despite Black 2 adding so many other features that mostly made the Pokémon Black game richer, some fans weren’t that fond of them.
Specifically, the added content to an already good Black game overwhelmed some fans during the gameplay. While Pokémon Black was always hauled for great story and lore, there were some limited areas and species of Pokémon one couldn’t catch outside the Unova region. Pokémon Black 2 changes that and adds so much more to the post-game content than the original game.
Overall, Black 2 did good with added features and game mechanics, especially for players who like doing a lot after completing the game’s main walkthrough.
So if we had to choose which game is better, you should probably go and see for yourself, because there isn’t a better answer if you don’t try it yourself.
Do you love the characters’ storylines, journeys, and main game? Go for Pokémon Black; you will enjoy it immensely. However, if you love more Pokémon, cool legendaries, harder challenges, and long post-game content that is almost as long as the main story, go for Pokémon Black 2; you won’t regret it. Ultimately, it all comes down to personal preference, and Pokémon games aren’t easy to judge before you at least try it.
Do you need to play Pokémon Black before Pokémon Black 2?
Our recommendation for these games is always to play the original games before direct sequels because they are closely connected. Pokémon Black does a really good job of immersing its players into the story, and Black 2 only continues the already great story.
Of course, if you are new to Pokémon games, it’s best to start with the original game to grasp the basics and then continue your journey through the Unova region with the knowledge that will come in handy for new Pokémon Black 2 features and add-ons.
In conclusion, start with Pokémon Black and White, transition to its sequel with newfound knowledge, and kickstart the hunt for great legendaries and the rest of Generation V of Pokémon through the Unova region.