Generation II was the first Generation where Pokémon began to expand, introducing 100 new Pokémon which could not be found in the original Generation I games. Many of these Pokémon expand the evolution families of older Pokémon, while a majority of them are brand-new evolutionary families.
These games were initially called "Pocket Monsters 2". Generation II events occur three years after Generation I.
Chronologically, Gold, Silver and Crystal take place around the same time as Generation IV.
The three Starter Pokémon in Gen. II are:
Advances in gameplay
Generation II kept the system from Generation I in almost every aspect, but added new features to the series, many of which have been kept in every Generation afterward.
- 100 new Pokémon.
- 8 new Gym Leaders.
- 2 new Pokémon Types: Dark (Japanese: あくタイプ Evil type) and Steel (Japanese: はがねタイプ Hagane type).
- Pokémon now have genders. Some Pokémon are exclusively female (ex. Chansey), exclusively male (e.g. Hitmonchan) or without gender (Magnemite).
- Pokémon Breeding. Some Pokémon (e.g. Pichu) can only be obtained through breeding. Some moves can also be learned exclusively through breeding.
- The Pokémon maintain a degree of happiness. Some Pokémon only evolve when reaching a certain degree of happiness (e.g. Eevee).
- Backward compatibility with Red, Blue and Yellow versions.
- Internal clock: Included for the first time. Times of day are also separated into Morning, Day and Night.
- Different Pokémon are encountered at different times and certain events only happen during certain days of the week.
- An EXP bar was added to the battle screen to show how much is needed to level up.
- The SPECIAL stat was separated into Special Attack and Special Defense.
- The Pokémon may carry items equipped that they can use themselves in battle Pokémon.
- Berries are introduced (in the third generation would be replaced by other types) and differentiate between objects that the Pokémon can be used by themselves in combat and those who do not.
- Certain Pokémon are now able to evolve when traded while holding a particular item.
- Pokérus appears for the first time.
- A new feature called the PokéGear appears that has the capabilities of a mobile phone, allowing trainers to challenge you to a rematch, and radio, with various radio shows and music.
- Some Pokémon are updated with new types or characteristics (Magnemite and Magneton become Electric/Steel type, for example).
- In-battle weather effects are added.
- Ghost-type attacks are super effective against Psychic Pokémon. Poison attacks do normal damage to Bug Pokémon, Bug attacks now do half damage to the Poison Pokémon. Ice attacks are now ineffective against Fire Pokémon.
- Some attacks have changed their type, e.g. Bite changed from Normal to Dark type. New movements are added, highlighting the Bug to balance the weaknesses of Psychic-type Pokémon.
- A new evolution stone, the Sun Stone was added.
- New evolutions for Pokémon that previous didn't evolve (e.g. Scyther) and alternative evolutions for others (Eevee, Gloom, Poliwhirl).
- For the first time, Legendary Pokémon appear as version mascots, each obtained earlier in their respective game than the other.
- The backpack where objects are kept were separated into different compartments.
- New types of Poké Balls, many of them created from Apricorns.
- The ability to find differently colored Pokémon, Shiny Pokémon, is added.
- Possibility to visit Kanto years after Red/Blue/Yellow, with trainers with high levels, the opportunity to complete the eight Gyms in Kanto (being 16 in total in the game), and the ability to fight both Blue, rival from the previous generation and Red, the protagonist of the previous generation.
- In Crystal, a female player character, Kris, can be chosen for the first time.
- In Crystal, moving sprites are given to opposing Pokémon and Pokémon on their stats page.
- Gold, Silver and Crystal feature infra-red connectivity to the Pokémon Pikachu and Pokémon Pikachu 2 pedometer using the mystery gift feature.
Gym Leaders, Elite Four and Champion
- Generation II was the first generation in which none of the starters or they're evolved forms are dual types. The other being Generation VIII.
- The European releases of the Gold and Silver games featured no connectivity to the Pokémon Pikachu 2.
- Also, this Generation is the last of the Pokémon games for the Game Boy Color.
- This generation was the first to have full color.
- Generation II was the first and so far only Generation (excluding Generation IV remakes) to have the player go to a different region.