VIZ Media has been so kind and sent me a copy of Pokémon Adventures Collector’s Edition Volume 4. I’ve read through the manga now and it’s an interesting one. As the cover suggests, Crystal finally enters the picture and is the main focus for a good chunk of the volume. As always, I’m trying to not spoil the main story, but the manga is almost 20 years old, so I’m sorry if I somehow ruin this for you.
Once again, I found myself struggling to really connect with a main character. Crystal (or Crys) is an expert Pokémon catcher. She specializes in capturing Pokémon and is way more competent at working for Professor Oak than anyone else. She’s extremely efficient, but has a very warm heart. She does care deeply for her Pokémon and it’s a little hard for her to welcome Chikorita to the team at first. However, she does make room. One thing I did appreciate about this volume is we finally learn why Pokémon Trainers are limited to 6 Pokémon at a time. It’s simply because Trainers can’t spread their love and attention to more than 6 at a time. You know what, that’s fair.
We do get some interesting stories with Crys though. She ends up not being able to capture Pokémon for a bit so she has to retrain and that’s interesting. We also get a lot of story revolving around Suicune as she goes after the legendary beast. There’s actually a lot of interesting stuff happening when we get closer to connecting Crys’ story to Gold and Silver. We are able to find out who the new leader of Team Rocket is (it’s not explicitly said, but very obvious), the Gym Leaders from Kanto and Johto are getting together for a tournament, Ho-Oh is on its way back to wreak havoc, Suicune finds someone to be its human partner, and Lugia shows up to the scene. There’s a lot of really awesome stuff in this volume. Yes, I struggled with most of Crystal’s story, but as it got connected I got more into it and it ended very awesome.
I’ll get to read the conclusion of this story in Volume 5, but the pay off I’ve already seen is really good. You definitely can’t get away with only getting Volume 4, but it’s a fantastic addition to any Pokémon fan’s collection.