I think I understand where you're coming from, the Originals [not that i've ever really played them] have that special Classic Magic x] [I came to this conclusion via the storyline & place arangement in FR/LG].
The new ones don't to be honest have a sense of dangerous adventure to get to the next town, you know like Violet City to Azeala Town- going throught the Routes' & the cave x].
My favourite part in the Pokemon Games is when you have to travel loads to get to the next place, without a Pokemon Centre for a while, it's such an overwhelming sense of excitement x3
That is why I cannot wait for HeartGold & SoulSilver to come out x]
New Jersey sounds...Interesting x] Funny though, it sounds similar to where I live- 30minute drive either North OR South to get to a beach, not near Cities for a bit [although there are very developed Towns xL] & there is a Nature/Bike Trail at the foot of my town x].