Great job trainers, let’s show them who are the very best!
It is no longer “what game has the best graphics”. At least, not in terms of what looks most real or amazing in terms of engine capability. Pokemon X & Y, by far, does not have the best graphical capabilities of the games on the list. (Not to mention the ridiculous lag if you even try the 3D in battles. hurp)
Rather, I’d say it has come mainly to “which game has the best aesthetics”— in other words, which style is best. What style both enhances the experience, message, and story best?
This has always been a minor issue with me— games with great graphics can have terrible aesthetics, or poorly applied aesthetics, which can truly dampen the experience of an otherwise solid game.
Pokemon is a great example of aesthetic that has evolved to service the experience of the game, making the jump from 2D to 3D almost flawlessly. But the graphics did not become hyper-real, or even particularly great—they are constrained by the system, after all. They only become more refined in accordance with the aesthetic and purpose of the game as a whole.
And that’s what makes it great.