Artwork by the talented Rhinne.
Poké-Warfare: Torn World is stated to be PG, and while I concur with this rating, it also seems like it will easily branch into PG-13. It is a story about war taking place in some of the regions, all Pokemon and no humans. It is NOT Pokemon Mystery Dungeon, as judging from the author’s reaction to a question on humans, SetsunaFSeiei from Marriland, there will be none to avoid that similarity. This is a refreshing change of pace, and not something I see very often. War? I see that. Pokemon only stories? I see that as well. War, and Pokemon only, in the modern day regions? THAT is not something I see, and it intrigued me.
The prologue is simple and immediately sets the stage for action, as a Weavile and his team infiltrate the Whirl Islands. It shows an immediate use of war tactics and battle, as well as very interesting uses for “man made Pokemon”, such as using Electrode as effectively a dynamite charge. More are revealed as the story progresses, but that will be left for you to discover the clever uses by reading. The story is currently at two chapters with a prologue (or two prologues, I’m not entirely sure), complete with a directory of members for each team, but lacking a directory of chapters. Not a problem now, but it could become an issue later.
First off, I like the use of information for locations. It is done in a way which does remind me of games such as Call of Duty and such, providing a look at what is going on like reading through a classified file. This story is played out with a combination of dialogue and description – just enough description to get the idea across but a lot of dialogue to paint a picture of the situation. Normally this would be a detractor, but I think it actually works very well considering the theme of the story. It is war, and in war, there is very little time to take in a detailed look at your surroundings – you are moving, fighting, and taking orders. Your greatest view of the world is through a communication unit or the scope of a gun (which even has a humorous Pokemon twist in itself).
I also adore the use of “man made Pokemon”, although I have some complaints on some of them as I do not view them as being created artificially. I can understand many of them, but others I cannot and they seem a bit out of place. As you read, you may understand which ones I am talking about, and to avoid spoilers, I won’t put them here. The chapters are a decent length, but with the large lack of description, I feel that there can be more to them. However, because missions can be short or long, I suppose it will ultimately rest on what mission is in the chapter.
As stated before, I also find issue with the lack of a directory for the chapters. The team listings and terms is nice, but finding the chapters can be a pain, especially since they are hidden in Spoiler Tags. However, I find this to be a good story that has a different view of the world, and clever use of Pokemon and relatively realistic combat dialogue makes it enjoyable to read. There is a lot that has to be discovered, and I look forward to seeing what develops.