Pokemon Emerald Version

Game Boy Advance

Generally favorable reviews - based on 28 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 19 out of 28
  2. Negative: 0 out of 28
Buy On
  1. 95
    A fine addition to the Pokemon line-up. It is able to take everything good about Ruby and Sapphire and improve on it, both enhancing the original Ruby and Sapphire feature as well as adding new ones.
  2. Of course, no amount of polish can change the fact that this is still a Pokémon game, and it carries the same flaws consistent to the series. It's certainly a respectable time sink, but-despite the evolutions to the core gameplay-it continues to offer extremely little to win over holdouts. However, it is an ideal starting point for new initiates to the Pokémon franchise.
  3. While Pokemon Emerald is really designed for people who haven't already picked up "Ruby" or "Sapphire," gamers will find a decent amount to do in Emerald. Features like the wireless adapter support, new battle styles and more 2 on 2 fighting make Pokemon Emerald a better version of a classic GBA title.
  4. Don't be fooled as I was – Pokémon Emerald is a great strategy RPG.
  5. 80
    And at the very least, Pokemon Emerald is the game to get if you have yet to put down the funds for a GBA Pokemon game.
  6. While Emerald is hardly a massive change to the series, it's still varied just enough to keep things interesting for any long-time players, and there's certainly no reason for new players not to start with it.
  7. Pokemon's winning concept refuses to crumble with age, and Emerald is as much fun as our old friends Red and Blue were back in 1998. [NGC Pocket]
  8. 80
    This is a solid, deep and involving game that still managed to drag me away from important work for a few hours even though I'd played it all before.
  9. It is the answer to those who have bitterly and rightfully complained that not much creativity has gone into the gameplay as the series has progressed.
  10. 80
    Although the turn-based combat system brings nothing notably new to this party, it remains mesmerizingly awesome when you unleash the right variety of attacks to make your Pokemon opponents "faint."
  11. 80
    If you've never played a Pokémon game before but have always wanted to try it, this is the version to get.
  12. 80
    Not only is it packed with just enough content to warrant a look, but for beginners it's a great starting point...well...as great a starting point as any of the Pokemon games.
  13. Game Informer
    There simply aren't enough changes to make this a must-buy. [July 2005, p.126]
  14. If you need something to satisfy your thirst for the next Pokemon adventure, Emerald is perfect.
  15. If you've heartily devoured Ruby and Sapphire, however, you're probably better off waiting until the next full-fledged new adventure to check out the latest improvements.
  16. For those new to the series the deep RPG play will hook you for at least 30 hours or so and the on screen sights and sound get the job done.
  17. Despite being made mostly of recycled parts, Emerald proves that the Pokémon formula still works.
  18. The graphics and sound are GBA standard, which is to say cute but unimpressive (and reasonably tinny).
  19. I admit the series is beginning to run dry in the gameplay innovation, but at its core Pokémon Emerald is still a solid RPG with pretty graphics, an overall well made game.
  20. Electronic Gaming Monthly
    The problem is, "Ruby" and "Sapphire" have been out for two years, and Emerald doesn't offer enough new content to differentiate itself. [July 2005, p.116]
  21. Nintendo Power
    Groundbreaking? No. A must-buy if you don't own Ruby or Sapphire? Absolutely. [June 2005, p.96]
  22. 70
    Ultimately, it's a difficult thing to judge. Pokemon Emerald is one of the most complete, involved, and rich RPGs -- from a gameplay standpoint -- on the GBA. But from another perspective, it's one of the most basic and cynical products on the market.
  23. Cheat Code Central
    Only you know how badly you want this game and if you could really care less about it one way or the other, I would suggest "the other."
  24. There's simply not enough new content to warrant a purchase.
  25. It's bad when great games from yesterday lose their steam. It's worse when that very same game's mechanics are implemented in an all-new title.
  26. It just would be nice for Nintendo and Game Freak to supply the other demand next time: the demand of something actually more different, or at least palpably new, for our hard earned. Let the pitchfork laden debate begin.
  27. 60
    Without a doubt Pokémon Emerald is the best Pokémon RPG to date, but if you've played Ruby and Sapphire and didn't care enough to catch them all and memorize all of their cute little names, then there probably isn't much here for you.

Awards & Rankings

#2 Most Discussed Game Boy Advance Game of 2005
#1 Most Shared Game Boy Advance Game of 2005
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 307 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 30 out of 307
  1. JackS.
    Jul 11, 2005
    Best pokemon game ever!
  2. Jun 18, 2013
    Great Pokemon game and especially great game for GBA.
    It had te biggest jump in graphics of all Pokemon titles (from the previous fugly and
    Great Pokemon game and especially great game for GBA.
    It had te biggest jump in graphics of all Pokemon titles (from the previous fugly and hideous GSC) and it would be stupid to do a remake of this one.
    Lots of different enviroments, contests, berry blenders it was definitely also the biggest improve in the gameplay with so much added stuff.
    Best Pokemon game for its time after the original games.
    Also the third generation was the last generation that I liked (Pelipper) but that is very subjective.
    Full Review »
  3. May 18, 2011
    Despite some additional Pokemon and animation, Pokemon Emerald is an unnecessary enhancement that barely enhances Ruby and Sapphire at all.Despite some additional Pokemon and animation, Pokemon Emerald is an unnecessary enhancement that barely enhances Ruby and Sapphire at all. For Pokemaniacs only. Full Review »