Pokémon is the name of the franchise, and originally, a series of video games, TV shows and more developed by the company Game Freak and published by Nintendo. The name "Pokémon" is from the shortened katakana form of Pocket Monsters (ポケモン, romanized Pokemon), ポケットモンスター (Poketto Monsutaa) in full in Japanese, although the franchise name may even be shortened to Pokémon as well sometimes. Although several spinoffs for other Nintendo systems have been released, the main series games are exclusive to Nintendo's hand-held platform, for which 18 games have been released, as well as 6 remakes. Pokémon was created by Satoshi Tajiri, who still has a hand in the production of the games. Pokémon was created in 1995.
The main Pokémon games all center around the strategic manipulation of creatures called Pokémon, from which the series takes its name. In the games, the player takes the role of a male or female human who has just received a license to catch Pokémon. The player usually goes to the local Pokémon Lab to receive a Starter Pokémon. In every main series game, the player is given a choice of three Pokémon; a Grass-type, a Fire-type, or a Water-type. A person possessing a Pokémon that trains it is called a Pokémon Trainer.
Using their first Pokémon, players are now usually free to set off on their own adventure, in which they will collect Badges by defeating Gym Leaders. Once the player has collected eight badges, they can battle the Elite Four; four representatives of the Pokémon League that are considered the best Trainers in their respective region.
Another goal of the game is to try to catch every Pokémon available; in the first Generation, there were 151 Pokémon available, but with every new Generation the number of Pokémon increases. Currently, there are 898 known Pokémon, and eight regions/generations, with the possibility of more being introduced in every new Generation.
Pokémon can be caught by weakening them with other Pokémon, and then capturing them in a Poké Ball, where they can be stored for future use, to battle and help capture more Pokémon. Each Pokémon has a health gauge, and whomever gauge runs out first loses; however, a trainer can have several Pokémon, so if one Pokémon's gauge reaches zero (called "Fainting"), they can send out another Pokémon. Each trainer can carry a maximum of 6 Pokémon although many more can be caught and stored in a PC. In order to try to knock out the opposing Pokémon, order your Pokémon to attack the opposing team's Pokémon. Pokémon can learn up to four attacks, although there are many more attacks that they are capable of learning, so you can replace one of your moves when they are ready to learn a move. When all of a Trainer's Pokémon have fainted, the trainer must depart to a Pokémon Center and give up an amount of money.
Pokémon was the brainchild of a Japanese man named Satoshi Tajiri, born August 28, 1965. As a child, Tajiri was fascinated with insects and loved to hunt and collect different species of them, as well as devise new methods to attract them. The franchise was originally made for young women and teenagers, but developed male fans instead.
Eventually, whilst Tajiri was in his early teens, most of the areas where Tajiri liked to hunt for bugs were replaced with modern establishments or demolished. No longer having the opportunity to collect insects, Tajiri created a fantasy in his mind about his adventures, his thoughts eventually evolving into a complicated idea. During the same time, Tajiri gained an interest in video games.
In 1982, Tajiri formed a magazine with a few of his friends dedicated to video games. The name of this magazine was Game Freak. Over the years, Game Freak's focus changed from covering gaming news into creating games — they officially announced themselves as a video game developer in 1989, and released their first game, Mario & Yoshi, in 1991, for both the Game Boy and the NES.
They subsequently released several other games, but in 1995, they struck gold; they, along with the help of Creatures and Nintendo, released Pocket Monsters Akai and Pocket Monsters Midori in Japan. The games were both a hit, with Akai doing best, and Nintendo decided to translate the games to English and release them in North America and Europe. Before this, they remade the games with the improved Pocket Monsters Blue, and thus incorporated the improvements into the two games to be released in North America. Since Pocket Monsters was already trademarked by another company in the United States, they needed to change the name – so, they just combined the words to form Pokémon. Since Midori did not sell well, they decided to change some aspects of it for the American release — including changing the name from the translated Green to Blue (although a "Blue" version was also released in Japan earlier, which improved on the original games). Pokémon Red and Pokémon Blue were both very successful in North America, and a series was born. The past English-language catchphrase was: "Gotta Catch 'em all!"
The games are generally released in pairs. For example, two games will be immediately released that are basically the same, except with several minor changes, and later, another improvement upon the last two games will be released. After this, work will begin on a new pair, which will have a vastly different story and various gameplay improvements. Examples of this are Pokémon Red and Blue, which are generally the same game, except certain Pokémon can only be obtained in either one. Shortly after the release of Pokémon Red and Blue, an improvement on these games was released; Pokémon Yellow, which featured improved color, and the addition of a Pikachu which followed the main character.
The following lists all of the games in the Pokémon franchise:
- Pokémon Red and Green Version (Japan)
- Pokémon Blue Version (Japan)
- Pokémon Red and Blue Version (International)
- Pokémon Yellow Version: Special Pikachu Edition (also known as Pokémon Pikachu in Japan)
Game Boy Color
Game Boy Advance
- Pokémon Diamond and Pearl Version
- Pokémon Platinum Version
- Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver Version
- Pokémon Black and White Version
- Pokémon Black and White Version 2
- Pokémon X and Y
- Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire
- Pokémon Sun and Moon
- Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon
- Pokémon Let's Go Pikachu and Let's Go Eevee
- Pokémon Sword and Shield
- Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl
- Pokémon Legends: Arceus
Game Boy Color
Game Boy Advance
- Pokémon Dash
- Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Blue Rescue Team
- Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time and Explorers of Darkness
- Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky
- Pokémon Trozei!
- Pokémon Ranger
- Pokémon Ranger: Shadows of Almia
- Pokémon Ranger: Guardian Signs
- Learn with Pokémon: Typing Adventure
- Pokémon Conquest
- Pokédex 3D
- Pokémon Rumble Blast
- Pokémon Dream Radar
- Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Gates to Infinity
- Detective Pikachu
- Pokémon Shuffle
- Pokémon Rumble World
- Pokémon Battle Trozei
- Pokémon Picross
- Pokémon Super Mystery Dungeon
- Pokémon Battle Revolution
- My Pokémon Ranch
- PokéPark Wii: Pikachu's Adventure
- Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Stormy, Blazing, and Light Adventure Squads
- Pokémon Rumble
- PokéPark 2: Wonders Beyond
- Pokémon Say Tap? (Japan)
- Pokémon TCG Online
- Camp Pokémon
- Dance? Pokémon Band! (Japan)
- Pokémon Shuffle Mobile
- Pokémon Duel
- Pokémon GO
- Pokémon: Magikarp Jump
- Pokémon Playhouse (North America and Europe)
- Pokémon Rumble Rush
- Pokémon Masters
- Pokémon Quest
Main series Games
1997-2002 (Generations I and II)
- The main symbol of Pokémon as a whole is the Poké Ball.
- The second symbol of Pokémon is Pikachu (mainly anime).
- Counting Mew, there are 151 original Pokémon.
- Mewtwo comes before Mew in the National and Kanto Pokédex.
- According to Tsunekazu Ishihara, the Pokémon Company's CEO, he revealed that Game Freak originally did not intend to bring Pokémon to the USA because they thought American kids would not like RPG games "with a lot of texts". However, this gamble ended up profiting them, paying off around $100 billion.
- In addition to insects, Satoshi Tajiri launched the series inspired by kaiju, especially the equivalents from Godzilla and Ultraman.
- Satoshi Tajiri originally wanted to call the franchise "Capsule Monsters", but had to settle for its current name due to copyright.
- Junichi Masuda said it usually takes at least six months to design a Pokémon from concept art stage to finalizing a design. But the more important Pokémon like Legendary Pokémon and Starter Pokémon typically have a design process for over a year.