Pokémon HeartGold Version (Japanese: ポケットモンスター ハートゴールド Pocket Monsters HeartGold) and Pokémon SoulSilver Version (Japanese: ポケットモンスター ソウルシルバー Pocket Monsters SoulSilver) are paired Generation IV remakes of the Generation II games Pokémon Gold and Silver.
Much like how Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen revisited the Generation I story of Kanto, HeartGold and SoulSilver retell the story of Johto, with the player’s starting town being New Bark Town. While the games feature several expansions in key areas, the overall plot follows the same direction as the original Gold and Silver. Some aspects exclusive to Crystal are also included. Like how FireRed and LeafGreen could link up with Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald to complete the Pokédex by trading regionally exclusive Pokémon, HeartGold and SoulSilver can link up with Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum to obtain Pokémon unavailable in Johto and Kanto (such as the Sinnoh starters) and vice versa.
Kris, despite being the female counterpart of Crystal’s player character, is not included as the female player character, with a new character instead taking her place. Whether she is chosen to be the player character or not, this new character will still appear in the game. The unselected protagonist will take a pseudo-rival role similar to the unselected characters of Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald, Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum.
The games were released on September 12, 2009 in Japan, February 4, 2010 in Korea, March 14, 2010 in North America, March 25, 2010 in Australia and March 26, 2010 in Europe (this excludes the Netherlands, Luxembourg and parts of Belgium due to an in-game save error, with the patched copies later released on April 2, 2010)
The plot of Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver is mostly the same as Gold and Silver with a few changes and included plot elements exclusive to Pokémon Crystal. The player, either Ethan or Lyra, begins his/her journey from New Bark Town, running an errand for Professor Elm to Mr. Pokémon’s house to discover what he was so excited about. Elm supplies the player with one of three Pokémon, Chikorita, Cyndaquil, or Totodile, for this errand. After Mr. Pokémon’s discovery turns out to be an Egg, the player returns to New Bark Town, only to find that a suspicious red-haired boy seen lurking outside of Elm’s lab earlier has stolen one of Elm’s Pokémon— the one that the player’s choice is weak to, coincidentally. Upon defeating him and returning to New Bark Town, the player gives the name of the boy (the player can choose any name, provided it fits under the seven-character limit; his name defaults to Soul in HeartGold and Heart in SoulSilver) to a police officer who has come to investigate the incident. Elm is amazed by the Egg and insists on studying it, allowing the player to keep the Pokémon they traveled with as a starter Pokémon. From here, he encourages the player to journey across Johto and challenge the eight Gym Leaders, Falkner, Bugsy, Whitney, Morty, Chuck, Jasmine, Pryce, and Clair, and eventually the Pokémon League. With the first Gym in Violet City nearby, the player heads off on their adventure.