1UP writes: "If you've played 2006's Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Blue & Red Rescue Teams, you have a pretty good idea of what to expect from the upcoming sequel, Explorers of Time & Darkness. If not, though, Nintendo's latest chapter in the imminently marketable Pokémon franchise is likely to take you somewhat by surprise. It's a far cry from the series' core titles, even though it still falls squarely in the RPG genre.
To hear Nintendo tell it, the difference is that the spin-off places players in the role of an actual pokémon rather than as a human trainer. (This is one of its many similarities to its predecessor.) But for the experienced RPG fan, the real difference is that it's a Mystery Dungeon game in a Pokémon costume. Chun Soft's dungeon crawler series has been around for ages, and is finally starting to net a bit of much-deserved respect in America after last month's release of the brutal-but-addictive Shiren the Wanderer -- but at heart, these Rogue-inspired games are very much the antithesis of Pokémon. Nintendo's monster-gathering RPGs are about steady progress through a well-defined world while capturing and leveling hundreds of creatures; the Mystery Dungeon games are about dying repeatedly and returning to level one every time you're overwhelmed by the randomly-generated monsters who lurk in the randomly-generated corridors."