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The official logo for the Pokémon franchise.

This article is about the franchise itself. For other articles with the same name, see Pokémon.

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 actual name "Pokémon" means Pocket Monster or known as ポケットモンスター (Pokettomonsutā) in Japan. Although several spinoffs for other Nintendo systems have been released, the main series games are exclusive to Nintendo's hand-held platform, for which 14 games have been released, as well as 4 remakes. Pokémon was created by Satoshi Tajiri, who still has a hand in production of the games.


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 649 known Pokémon, and five 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, Pokémon attack each other. Pokémon can learn up to four attacks, although there are many more attacks that they are capable of learning. When all of a Trainer's Pokémon have fainted, the trainer must depart to a Pokémon Center and hands 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.

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 focous 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 1996 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!"

Game Releases

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 game play 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.

List of Games

The following lists all of the games in the Pokémon franchise.

Main Series Games

Game Boy

Game Boy Color

Game Boy Advance

Nintendo DS

Spin-off Games

Game Boy

Game Boy Color

Game Boy Advance

Nintendo DS

Nintendo 3DS

Nintendo 64

Game Cube


Upcoming Games

Nintendo 3DS



  • The main symbol of the Pokémon as a whole is the Poké Ball.
  • The second symbol of Pokémon is Pikachu (mainly anime).
  • There are 151 (if you count Mew) original Pokémon.
  • Mewtwo comes before Mew in the National and Kanto Pokédex.

See also

External links