Pokémon Platinum Version is a 2008 role-playing video game developed by Game Freak, published by The Pokémon Company and Nintendo for the Nintendo DS handheld game console. It is an enhanced version of Pokémon Diamond and Pearl and is part of the fourth generation of the Pokémon video game series. It was released in Japan on September 13, 2008, and later in North America, Australia, and Europe in 2009. The developers made Platinum with the intent of making it a stronger version of Diamond and Pearl, which they described as the “ultimate” Pokémon titles.
In Platinum, players control either a male or female character and start with one of three Pokémon given to them from Professor Rowan. The mascot Pokémon is Giratina, who plays a central role in the game’s plot. While it only had one form in Diamond and Pearl, it is given a new alternate form alongside a new area called the Distortion World, which features altered physics from the normal land of Sinnoh, where the game takes place. The gameplay stays true to traditional Pokémon mechanics. Players explore a large area, which ranges from mountains to bodies of water, grasslands, populated areas, and snowy expanses. Similar to previous titles, players have their Pokémon fight turn-based battles against other Pokémon.
Pokémon Platinum has been met with generally positive reception, holding aggregate scores of 84 and 83.14% on Metacritic and GameRankings, respectively. It was praised for being the best Pokémon game ever made and also praised for the additions and changes made to Diamond and Pearl by publications such as IGN, Nintendo Power, and GamePro, although it has also been criticized for being too similar to them. IGN ranked it as the ninth-best Nintendo DS game ever made, as well as nominating it as one of the best DS role-playing games of 2009. It was the fastest-selling game in Japan at the time, and had sold 7.06 million copies worldwide by March 31, 2010.
Pokémon Platinum is a role-playing video game with adventure elements. Its basic mechanics are the same as those found in Diamond and Pearl. As with all Pokémon games for handheld consoles up to that point, the gameplay is in third-person overhead perspective, and consists of three basic screens: a field map, in which the player navigates the main character; a battle screen; and the menu, in which the player configures their party, items, or gameplay settings. Players begin the game with one Pokémon and can capture more using Poké Balls. The player can also use his or her Pokémon to battle other Pokémon. When the player encounters a wild Pokémon or is challenged by a trainer to a battle, the screen switches to a turn-based battle screen where the Pokémon battle. During a battle, the player may use a move, use an item, switch the active Pokémon, or flee. Fleeing is not an option during battles against trainers. All Pokémon have hit points (HP); when a Pokémon’s HP is reduced to zero, it faints and cannot battle unless revived with a Pokémon skill or an item.
If the player’s Pokémon defeats the opposing Pokémon by causing it to faint, it receives experience points. After accumulating enough experience points, it will level up; most Pokémon evolve into a new species of Pokémon when they reach a certain level. Apart from battling, capturing Pokémon is the most important element of Pokémon gameplay. Although other trainers’ Pokémon cannot be captured, the player may use Poké Balls on a wild Pokémon during battle. A successful capture adds the Pokémon to the player’s active party or stores it in the PC if the player already has the maximum of six Pokémon. Factors in the success rate of capture include the HP of the target Pokémon and the strength of the Poké Ball used; the lower the target’s HP and the stronger the Poké Ball, the higher the success rate of capture is. Platinum features largely the same Pokémon as in Diamond and Pearl, with some added and some missing. Platinum features the Pokétch, a wristwatch-like device, introduced in Diamond and Pearl. It features simple applications such as a calculator, map, counter, and drawing pad. Platinum also features the Underground mode, where players can dig for spheres and Fossils.