Pokémon is one of the most iconic franchises of our time. The cute pocket monsters in this colorful universe have been around for over two decades at this point, and new entries continue to add more amazing characters to the already massive roster.
We don’t really think there’s a bad Pokémon game out there since they are basically iterations on a proven, popular formula. However, some games in the franchise manage to stand out due to their innovation and mechanics.
Without further ado, let us take a look at some of the best games in the Pokémon series.
Pokémon Diamond & Pearl – Nintendo DS, 2006
Diamond & Pearl deserves special mention as the first DS entry in the monster-battling franchise. It introduced fans to a bunch of new features, most of which was the ability to battle other trainers around the world over the Internet or local multiplayer capability with the DS Wireless.
It also changed the number of “times” per day from three to five, brought a fresh new twist to the moves system and as is a tradition – introduced a bunch of colorful critters to the pantheon.
Pokémon Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon – Nintendo 3DS, 2017
Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon is an enhanced edition of Sun and Moon, with a few notable additions such as new story missions, some upgraded character forms for the legendary Necrozma, and a few Ultra Beasts to keep things fresh.
You can also spend a lot of time hanging out in this game doing fun things like surfing, taking nice pictures with your favorite Pokémon and collect Totem Stickers to add to your collection.
Pokémon Gold & Silver – Game Boy Color, 2000
The Game Boy Color was a great platform to launch Pokémon Gold and Silver, a game which first introduced a real-world clock to the universe to keep track of the date and time in the real world. This was a valuable addition because as we all know, it is super easy to lose track of time when you’re fulfilling your destiny as a Pokémon collector.
This game is also notable for introducing Shiny Pokémon, which are rare creatures that have a notably different color palette. It also introduced Steel-type and Dark-type Pokémon.
Gold and Silver also introduced items that your Pokémon could wield for different combat effects, along with some new Poke Balls. It also introduced the Pokegear, which is a way cooler version of our boring smartphones.
Pokémon Red & Blue – Game Boy, 1998
Pokémon Red & Blue deserves special credit for launching the Pokémon juggernaut. It introduced the first 150 characters in the series including perennial fan favorites Pikachu, Eevee and Charmander. It also allowed you to link two Game Boys and engage in high-octane multiplayer battles and trading.
Looking back at the series, it is notable how little the series has deviated from the roots laid during this first entry in the two decades that followed.
The game still plays out in third-person perspective when you’re controlling a character. You have to engage in turn-based battles, explore a large overworld that contains surprises and secrets, and go into the wild to find New Pokémon.
Pokémon Black & White 2 – Nintendo DS, 2012
Pokémon Black & White 2 is a unique game in the series because it’s the first (and only) one that is a direct sequel to a previous game in the franchise. Picking up a couple of years after the events of Black & White, this game takes you to several new locations and fleshes out the Unova region by adding a slew of interesting Pokémon to add to your collection.
One of the most hilarious and fun features in this game is a mini-game called PokeStar Studios, which gives you the ability to don the director’s hat and film your own masterpiece using your lovable Pokémon as actors. Another interesting addition is the Pokémon World Tournament, which lets you pit your skills against hallowed trainers from previous games in the series such as Gym Leader Brock and the Water-type expert Misty.
Pokémon Platinum – Nintendo DS, 2009
Platinum is the souped-up version of Pokémon Diamond and Pearl. It is most notable for introducing the Wi-Fi Plaza, which is a mall-type meeting where players from around the world can walk around, interact with other players and play 20 different mini-games using Nintendo’s Wi-Fi feature.
The Wi-Fi plaza can hold up to 20 players at once and allows a group around 30 minutes of playtime. Platinum also allowed players to record their battles and trade over the Internet. As is tradition, this game also introduces new forms for several Pokémon.
Spanning seven generations, the Pokémon series is one of the most prolific in gaming history. So what is the Secret of Pokemon Success? The franchise is stronger than ever, with several new releases and mobile games adding to the huge variety of titles.
What are your favorite Pokémon games? Let us know in the comments!