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The History and Future of Pokemon

Updated on May 25, 2020

Pokemon Logo


The History of Pokemon

Pokemon is a very popular and famous franchise currently published and owned by Nintendo. It was created by Satoshi Tajiri in 1996 based on his love for collecting bugs and insects. Pokemon is one of the most popular and successful series in the entire world. Pokemon merchandise includes video games, toys, books, a trading card game, etc. Although Pokemon is targeted towards a young audience of gamers, many older children as well as adults play the Pokemon games. Between the eight generations of Pokemon, there are currently 890 known Pokemon.

Generation I

The first generation of Pokemon took us on an adventure like no other. It started off with Pokemon Red and Green in Japan, followed by the international versions Pokemon Red and Pokemon Blue. Due to the popular Pokemon Anime Series, Pokemon Yellow came out as well. These games gave us a whole new way to play on such a basic handheld. Who could ever forget their first gym battle with Brock, your first Pokemon evolving, or finally figuring out how to use the Mew glitch to find the famous MissingNo. No matter how many new Pokemon games come out, Generation I will always be at a special place in our hears for long time Pokemon fans.

Generation II

Generation II became official with the release of Pokemon Gold and Pokemon Silver. The game took place in the Johto Region, just west of the Kanto Region where Generation I took place. The game added about 100 new Pokemon, making the total number of Pokemon 251. Soon after Gold and Silver, Pokemon Crystal were released, which was an upgrade. It was the first Pokemon game to let you choose the gender of the hero. With new features such as the ability to capture a rare shiny Pokemon, or the unique Pokerus, and being able to travel back to the Kanto region to get a total of 16 badges, Pokemon Gold, Silver, and Crystal was a different and an unique experience like no other.

Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire Logo


Generation III

The release of Pokemon Ruby and Pokemon Sapphire, the Generation III era of Pokemon was here, as well as the new Game Boy Advance era. Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire took place in the all new Hoenn Region, where new Pokemon, people, and adventures awaited. Soon after Ruby and Sapphire came the release of two new games: Pokemon Firered and Pokemon Leafgreen. These two games brought old and new players back to the Kanto region. Then, if that wasn't enough, an upgrade of Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire came to us: Pokemon Emerald. Emerald brought some exciting new features, most importantly, the Battle Frontier. The Battle Frontier was a place where Pokemon Pros can test their Pokemon in battles unlike any other. Overall, both the new Pokemon Ruby, Sapphire and Emerald, and the remakes, Pokemon Firered and Pokemon Leafgreen, were enjoyable for both the new Pokemon fans, and the ones from the very beginning.

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Generation IV

Generation IV began with the release of Pokemon Diamond and Pokemon Pearl on the Nintendo DS. Pokemon Diamond and Pearl took place in the Sinnoh Region, where new Pokemon, gyms, and adventures awaited. Pokemon Diamond and Pearl introduced both new and old features, such as the Day and Night System from Pokemon Gold, Silver, and Crystal. Since the game ran on the Duel Screen DS, the main game ran on the top of the screen, while the Poketch (Pokemon Watch) was on the bottom once obtained. Like previous generations, an updated version of Pokemon Diamond and Pearl was released: Pokemon Platinum. This game brought back a new Battle Frontier, as well as other features from Pokemon Diamond and Pearl. The last games to be released for this Generation was remakes of Pokemon Gold and Silver, Pokemon Heartgold and Pokemon Soulsilver. This brought players back to the Johto and Kanto Regions, where players can collect 16 badges, see and capture old favorites, and once again stop Team Rocket from taking over the world.

Pokemon Black 2 And White 2 Box Art


Generation V

When Pokemon Heartgold and Pokemon Soulsilver were released, Pokemon Fans anxiously awaited Generation V. This wait was over with the release of Pokemon Black and Pokemon White. Pokemon Black and White's adventure takes place in the Unova Region, where no other Pokemon from previous Generations roam. These games have many new features, such as PokeMarts are now in the Pokemon Centers, as well as the Global Trade Station being there too. The all new criminals, Team Plasma, are up to no good, telling people to release their Pokemon for the sake of the Pokemon. The towns of the Unova region have been improved as well, with a completely 3D city can be explored.

After Pokemon Black and White were released, a lot of Pokemon fans were expecting another remake series, this time of Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire, Instead, Pokemon fans now get to enjoy the Unova Region again, two years later, in Pokemon Black 2 and Pokemon White 2. These games let you capture Pokemon from previous Generations in the wild, as well as explore new and old places in the Unova Region. Characters from Pokemon Black and White still reside in this Region, as well as new characters too.

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Generation VI

Generation VI brought the Pokemon series to the new Nintendo 3DS with Pokemon X and Pokemon Y. Released worldwide on October 12th, 2013, it brought trainers to the new Kalos Region, based on Northern France. These games were the first to bring a 3D world, 3D battles, and 3D models to the main games. The games introduced several new Pokemon, including the new starters, Chespin, Fennekin, and Froakie, and the star legendaries, Xerneas for Pokemon X, and Yveltal for Pokemon Y. Even though the Pokemon Games brought the least amount of new Pokemon to date, they made up for it with the new Mega Evolutions, which gave certain Pokemon a temporary evolution during battle, to make them stronger, change their appearance and stats, their abilities and even their types. Also, for the first time since Generation II, a new type was added, the Fairy-Type. Several old Pokemon gained the Fairy-Type for a secondary type, such as the Ralts Line and Jigglypuff Line, and some Pokemon just became only Fairy-Types, Like the Clefairy and Snubbull Lines. Also, the games brought back several old features and enhanced them, such as the GTS (Global Trade Station) can now be used anywhere, and has a search option where you type the name of the Pokemon you want, even if you don't have that Pokemon registered in your Pokedex. Trainer Customization can be used to change your character's hair style and color, outfits, accessories, even eye color, to make each character unique.

Pokemon X and Y added many new features that utilized the Nintendo 3DS functions. Your Nintendo 3DS Friend Code is used to add Friends, instead of a seperate friend code for the game. Also, two separate application, Pokemon Bank and Poke Transporter, can be used to transfer Pokemon from Pokemon Black, White, Black 2, and White 2. Pokemon Bank has a yearly fee, and when download, will let you access the Poke Transporter. Pokemon Bank is a cloud storage to store up to 3000 Pokemon, similar to Pokemon Box and My Pokemon Ranch. Lastly, the previous Pokemon Global Link used for Generation V games has been taken down and replaced with the new Pokemon Global Link which utilized Pokemon X and Y. On the Pokemon GL, players can track their progress in the games, earn PokeMiles for rare items that cannot be purchased in the game, play games, earn medals for accomplishments, and can check any Pokemon News for tournaments or events.

On May 7th, 2014, remakes of Generation III Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire was announced. Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire were released on November 21, 2014 and November 28, 2014 (European and Indian Releases). The remakes included concepts from Pokemon X and Y, such as new Mega Evolutions and the ability to use the Pokemon Global Link. The games also added new features and characters, such as a young girl name Zinnia, who plays a big role in the Delta Episode Side Quest.

Pokemon Sun and Pokemon Moon Logos
Pokemon Sun and Pokemon Moon Logos | Source

Generation VII

Generation VII continued the series with Pokemon Sun & Pokemon Moon released worldwide in November 2016. Trainers started in the Aloha region, inspired by real world Hawaii, USA. Pokemon Sun & Moon, like previous entries, brought new changes to the series, many remaining exclusive to this particular regions.

Trainers in the Aloha region will have the choice of Rowlet, a Grass/Flying type that trades it's Flying for the ghost type at it's final evolution, Litten, a Fire type who gains the questionable Dark type at it's final evolution, and lastly the Water type Popplio, who becomes a Water/Fairy at the end of it's evolution. The star legendaries are Solgaleo in Pokemon Sun, and Lunala in Pokemon Moon. In addition to the staple legendaries, each one of the four islands in the Aloha region has their own "Island Guardian", legendary Pokemon who rarely show themselves to humans, but are always watching and protecting their islands.

The islands themselves have their own traditions as well. While in other regions, trainers go on an adventure fighting the many gyms of their respective region, Aloha trainers take on The Island Trials. Each trial is unique to and reflects their Trial Captain's personality, and have a powerful Totem Pokemon in the end of them. Trainers who complete a trial earn special Z-Crystals to unlock the new Z-Moves in battle. While on the Island Trial, trainers may encounter the mischievous Team Skull, and the mysterious Aether Foundation.

A year after Pokemon Sun & Pokemon Moon, the "enhanced" Pokemon Ultra Sun & Pokemon Ultra Moon was released worldwide. While the enhanced versions follow trainers again in the Aloha region and the Island Trials, there are additional features and changes from it's predecessors, including an altered story plot and additional post-game features. Many Pokemon fans consider Ultra Sun and Moon to be the superior version of the games.

Finally, in November of 2018, Pokemon Let's Go Pikachu and Let's Go Eevee was released worldwide. It has been debated by fans around the world if Let's Go was considered a "mainline" game in the Pokemon series, as well as it's placement in the generation system.

Let's Go Pikachu and Eevee were the first main series games to release on the Nintendo Switch, returning us again to the Kanto region with an altered storyline. Depending on which game you are playing, your starter Pokemon will be a special Pikachu or Eevee, unique to the wild versions in the game. Your starter cannot evolve, and is capable of learning all of the "HMs" in the game, called Secret Techniques. Your partner can also wear special outfits similar to their Trainers, and rock unique hairstyles.

Let's Go catch system is based off the popular mobile game, Pokemon GO. Trainer battles still occur like previous games, and Legendary Pokemon require a battle before you can attempt to catch them. Wild Pokemon can be seen for the first time in the over world. Some may have a red/blue aura, which gives a size bonus when caught, and they will have stars above them and show their alternative colors if they are shiny, making shiny hunting much more obvious. Pokemon caught can follow your trainer around the overworld, and some Pokemon can even be ridden or flew!

While Let's Go Pikachu and Let's Go Eevee is limited compared to other Pokemon games, it can stand alone on its own with the unique changes limited to the games, especially for fans of Pokemon GO.

Pokemon Sword and Shield with their legendaries
Pokemon Sword and Shield with their legendaries | Source

Generation VIII

Finally, we are on Generation VIII as I update this article. Generation VIII began with the global release of Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield on the Nintendo Switch. Pokemon Sword and Shield brought the "true" main game experience to console, while stirring up quite a bit of online controversy with some of the changes to the games.

Pokemon Sword and Shield take place in the region of Galar, based off of Great Britain in our world. Trainers can choose between 3 adorable starter Pokemon, the Grass Type Grookey, the Fire Type Scorbunny, and the Water Type Sobble. After choosing their starters, both the trainer and their main rival, Hop, take on the Gym Challenge, for a chance to defeat Hop's older brother, the unbeatable Galar Champion, Leon.

New features include Dynamax, where Pokemon grow to extremely large sizes and get boosted moves for a few turns, while some having special Gigantamax Forms.

Pokemon from previous generations may return with Galarian Region Forms, and may even evolve into to brand new Pokemon.

In the middle of the Galar region is a special place called The Wild Area, where many Pokemon can be found and special Max Raid Battles can be encountered with up to 3 other players.

Finally, on January 9th, 2020, the creators of Pokemon Sword and Shield announced an expansion pass to the games, replacing the 3rd entry or enhanced versions of previous generations. The Expansion Pass contains two large DLCs to be released through 2020. The first is slated to come June 2020, and is called the Isle of Armor. The second is set to be released Autumn 2020, and is called The Crown Tundra. Many classic Pokemon will found in these locations, and can be traded and shared with all players, even those who choose to not buy the pass.

More info will be added once the expansions have dropped!


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