Skip to main content

Pokemon facts - 30 little known pieces of trivia from the classic franchise

Ruby/Sapphire is the only game in the main series where you see the stars father

One of the stranger aspects of Pokmon is the absence of fathers in the world. In every main game but Ruby/Sapphire, your character has a mother, but the player never sees the characters father in the game. Generation III shook things up some, not only by introducing your characters father, but making him one of the Gym Leaders you have to defeat. However, after Norman, the series has return to leaving its protagonists fatherless.

Gold and Silver was planned to include a skateboard

Its a blessed moment when a trainer finally is given a bike in the game, allowing them to traverse the game world much faster. But when Gold and Silver were originally announced in Japan, developer Game Freak wanted to mix things up by also including a skateboard, but this was ultimately cut for unspecified reasons.

Pokemon had a game on SNES (kind of)

Many Pokemon games have the pixelated qualities people associate with the SNES, but the series didnt start until after the N64 had replaced the Super NES as Nintendos main home console. Despite that, there was a single Pokemon game made for the 16-bit system, though it only came out in Japan. Picross NP was a series of puzzle collections that were based on Nintendo franchises, with one volume based on Pokemon. Even more interesting is that the game was based on a cancelled Pokemon Picross game that had been planned for Game Boy.

Pokemon Puzzle League was never released in Japan

Longtime Pokemon fans are used to getting games months after they're released in Japan, and occasionally some Pokmon games are never released outside of Japan. Pokmon Puzzle League was the very rare reversal of that situation. Intended for US fans of the anime, it was decided that the N64 had gotten too unpopular in Japan to make importing worth it, and it remains the only Pokemon game not officially released in Japan.

Pokmon Snap was originally for the 64DD and not a Pokmon game

For many early Pokmon fans, Pokmon Snap occupies a special place in their heart. The virtual photo hunt dropped players right into the wonderful world of Pokmon, so its surprising to learn it wasnt originally planned to involve the loveable creatures. As revealed by former boss of developer HAL and current president of Nintendo, Pokmon were added to the game after development on the photography title had begun, and it was also intended for the seemingly revolutionary N64 Disc Drive. Of course, when that add-on flopped in Japan and was cancelled in America, those plans obviously changed.

The white hair of the male hero in Ruby/Sapphire is actually a hat

The stars of the Pokmon series are pretty fashionable for kids that are basically on an extended nature hike. With each generation the character designs got more involved, though the character in the first GBA title really stood out thanks to his shock of white hair. At least, based on the not so detailed in-game model, we always assumed it was hair. Turns out it was a hat all along that covers the characters black hair.

Pokmon Conquest originally pitched as a Dynasty Warriors game

Pokmon Conquest was one of the stranger mainstream games released this year, combining the pocket monsters with the obscure strategy series Nobunaga's Ambition. But originally the developer, Tecmo Koei, had pitched to Nintendo combining Pokemon with their more popular franchise, Dynasty Warriors. Nintendo instead suggested a teaming with Nobunaga, partially because the Warriors games are a little more violent than they like the Pokmon to get.

Game Freak once created a game published by Sega

Based on its love for Pikachu, Pokmon developer Game Freak clearly has a thing for electric-powered heroes, but it predates Pokmon. Despite their very close connection to Nintendo currently, pre-Pokmon Game Freak made games for several different companies, including a game called Pulseman for Nintendos then-rival, Sega. Not released outside Japan until recently on the Wiis Virtual Console, the game never got a sequel, but you can see Game Freaks continued love for its would-be mascot in the form of Gen IV Electric/Ghost Pokmon Rotom, which bears a striking resemblance to the Genesis hero.

Ash's Japanese name is a tribute to Pokmons creator

American fans have known him as Ash Ketchum since the cartoon premiered stateside in 1998, but that's not what Japanese fans know him as. From the start Ash was known as Satoshi, a common enough name, but also a clear reference to Pokmon creator and Game Freak boss, Satoshi Tajiri. Meanwhile, Ash's original rival, Gary Oak, is known as Shigeru, an obvious tribute to the creator of Mario, Zelda, and too many others to name, Shigeru Miyamoto.

Parasect has rare connection to real world

In the mythology of Pokemon, the world of the games seems to reflect reality, but it isnt filled with actual locations from the planet Earth. The Kanto and Kalos regions certainly have connections to Tokyo and Paris (respectively), though the games never mention their real life counterparts. Parasects early Pokedex entries are one of the very rare exceptions of the games referencing a real country. In Pokemon Stadium, the Pokedex says that Parasects spores are used as medicine in China. That fact was then repeated in the Pokedex of the FireRed remake for GBA. Perhaps China is one of the few countries thats shared in both Game Freaks imaginary world and our own?

Henry moved from the suburbs of northern Florida to work at GR+, and hasn't looked back once in seven years. When not collecting Mario toys, you can find him constantly checking his Twitter.