- A whole lot of fusion possibilities
- Travelling around one region is really fun
- A cool remix of the original Pokemon Red story
- Gets rather tedious before completion
- Doesn't offer a very wide gameplay variety
Pokemon Infinite Fusion is probably the most talked-about Pokemon fan game in the last year or so, with it exploding onto TikTok.
The most curious thing about it is that it’s not actually a ROM hack, which is how most people play Pokemon fan games, but is a game designed in RPG Maker, running off its own EXE file and not using an existing ROM as a base (well, it uses sprites, characters, and models, but it’s not like Pokemon Unbound where you have to patch a file on top of another file).
But how is the actual game? Is it any good?
We’ve played the entire game and found out, just for this review.
The story of Pokemon Infinite Fusion, basic as it is, takes place 3 years before Gold and Silver and sees you traveling around the Kanto region to get all eight Gym badges and challenge the Pokemon League.
Along the way, you’ll run into Team Rocket, who are up to no good yet again. The story is actually just a very slightly restructured version of the story from Pokemon Red and Green, incorporating the new Fusion mechanic into the story but not modifying much else.
Once you’ve beat the game though, you’re not quite done though. Like with Gold and Silver, you can explore the entirety of the Johnto region and battle eight more Gym Leaders and a whole new League, before facing a secret final boss that might be the coolest encounter in the entire game.
Of course, the main attraction of Pokemon Infinite Fusion is the Fusion part of that title.
You can fuse together any two Pokemon in the game to create a new Pokemon, which also comes with a brand-new sprite.
There’s every single Pokemon from Generations 1 and 2, with all of their evolutions, with 101 Pokemon added from Generation 3, Generation 4, Generation 5, Generation 6 and Generation 7.
While you can fuse together any two Pokemon, as long as you have the necessary DNA Splicer, select Pokemon actually have handcrafted unique sprites that the community has created.
There are over 50,000 custom sprites that are all based on designs from the community, and any other potential fusion is just randomly meshed together (which can result in some truly horrific Pokemon that will give you nightmares).
There are also 25 legendary Pokemon that, yes, you can fuse together to make new Pokemon and can create some truly powerful combinations.
Combine this with the fact that Pokemon Infinite Fusions adds moves and abilities from Gen 5 to 7 and adds battle mechanics from every generation up to Gen 7 and you’re presented with an overall much more complex and thought-provoking Pokemon game than some of the best Pokemon ROM hacks.
Same Old, Same Old
The big issue that Pokemon Infinite Fusion faces, especially with the sheer amount of Pokemon and Gyms on offer is tedium.
After a certain amount of time, you do get bored with the very samey dynamic of visiting a gym, solving a puzzle, fighting a few people then fighting a gym leader before travelling to the next gym and repeating.
Had the game been kept to specifically one region, be that Johto or Kanto, then maybe this could have been forgiven, but as it is you’re likely going to be trouncing your way through that second region without much thought.
Though completing the Johto region does unlock an extremely cool final boss (spoilers incoming!) that slightly makes up for the basic tedium of traveling through.
The very final boss of Pokemon Infinite Fusion sends you to the Fusion through the means of a Pokemon (you can probably guess which one) and you face Trainer Red at the top of Mount Silver.
It’s EXTREMELY cool to see somebody from the original Pokemon game here, but with their Pokemon changed and merged to be fusions of Pokemon that Red wouldn’t have discovered in the original games.
It’s an extremely challenging fight too, one that could take you a LONG time to beat, it’s just a shame it’ll come when you’re likely starting to feel burnt out with the game.
It doesn’t help that there are side quests along the way of the main game. While in most Pokemon games these would have been extremely welcome and added a sense of replayability to the game, here they just add to the tedium.
They’re the same basic side quest loop again and again, and never usually take that long to really complete.
Pokemon Infinite Fusion is fun.
It’s not much more than that, though, with several issues arising from the desire to keep the story from Pokemon Red and Green, the main one being that it causes a player to just not be able to get engaged with the story.
There’s also a sense of tedium that comes once you’ve beat the main story and moved on to the Johto Gyms since you’ll have really experienced everything that the main gimmick could give you.
Still, if you’re bored, it’s worth playing just for how cool the gimmick is for that first region, and how funny some of the fusions can actually be in the game.
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Ryan is a seasoned retro gaming features writer with bylines at Fanbyte, PCGamesN, Lost In Cult and more. When he’s not writing, you can find him playing retro video games.