The Master Ball (マスターボール Masutaa Booru) is the rarest ball available in any game.
It was originally manufactured by Silph Co. in Saffron City, but only a few were produced, as Team Rocket hijacked the building and attempted to steal them. Due to this, the Master Ball as a whole was discontinued.
Only one can be found during the course of the story in each game. However, starting from Generation II, additional Master Balls can be won, albeit very rarely, from the in-game Lottery if the player character has the exact number. More can also be gained by trading a Pokémon holding a Master Ball from another game. It is possible to get up to 450 Master Balls without hacking.
It has a two-shade purple top forming two brighter purple circles on the sides of the top, as well as a white letter "M" printed on the top. The Master Ball is guaranteed to capture any wild Pokémon without fail, completely ignoring the capture system as a whole. Players should be careful about using the Master Ball, as in most scenarios, there will only be 1 Master Ball at the player's disposal.
- Red, Blue, Green and Yellow: Given by the CEO of Silph Co. after defeating Giovanni in Saffron City.
- Gold and Silver: Given by Professor Elm after getting the Dragon Fang from the Dragon's Den.
- Crystal: Given by Professor Elm after answering the Elder's test at the Dragon's Den.
- Ruby, Sapphire and Emerald: Found in a room of the Magma Hideout (Ruby) and Aqua Hideout (Sapphire and Emerald) between 2 Electrode and a Nugget*.
- FireRed and LeafGreen: Given by the CEO of Silph Co. after defeating Giovanni in Saffron City.
- Diamond, Pearl and Platinum: Given by Cyrus after defeating him at Team Galactic's HQ.
- HeartGold and SoulSilver: Given by Professor Elm after answering the Elder's test at the Dragon's Den.
- Black and White: Given by Professor Juniper after defeating Iris and Drayden in Opelucid City; Trade 50 Pokémon through the GTS.
- Black 2 and White 2: Given by Professor Juniper in Mistralton City; Defeat Colress on the Plasma Frigate after defeating the Elite Four; can be won from Join Avenue's Raffle Shops.
- X and Y: Reward by the manager of the Poké Ball Factory after defeating a Team Flare Grunt and Mable.
- Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire: Found in a room of the Magma Hideout (Omega Ruby) or Aqua Hideout (Alpha Sapphire) between 2 Electrode as fake items and a Nugget.*
- Sun, Moon, Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon: Given by Gladion after storming Aether Paradise.
- Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!: Given by president after defeating Giovanni in Silph Co.
- Sword and Shield: Given by Professor Magnolia after becoming Champion.
- Sword and Shield Expansion Pass (Crown Tundra): Given by Peony in the Freeze Inn after the player is given all three Legendary Clues.
- The Master Ball was introduced as a new item in the Super Smash Bros. series in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U as a second item from the Pokémon series, it almost always opens up Rare and Legendary Pokémon, except on rare occasions when the Master Ball will release a Goldeen (which only uses Splash) instead of a Legendary Pokémon. It is a very powerful item to use, as the Pokémon obtained can aid the player character.
- This ball completely ignores the capture system that regular Poké Balls follow, as the ball will always capture the Pokémon.
- Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 are the only games where more than one Master Ball can be obtained without using the Lottery or trading Pokémon equipped with one; this is because Professor Juniper awards the player with one in Mistralton City, and a Master Ball can be obtained from defeating Colress (on the Plasma Frigate) after the main story narrative.
- Though production of it is believed to have been discontinued by Silph Co. following Giovanni's and Team Rocket's attempted takeover, given its appearance in other games it is more likely that the company still produces a limited number of Master Balls for use mainly by Pokémon researchers (like Professor Oak and Professor Elm), high-ranking members of the Pokémon League (such as the Elite Four and League Champion), those given away as Lottery Prizes, and possibly some for use by Silph employees. It is also possible and likely that due to their capture rate, their production and distribution is monitored and regulated by Pokémon League. Given Cyrus having a Master Ball in his possession, it is likely that a few may have made their way into the hands of criminals, via either theft or purchased on the black market.
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