Pokémon Index

The playthough of Pokémon Emerald:
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Pokémon is the best video game franchise ever. Period. The sooner this basic truth is universally accepted, the better. (It’s also the most complicated Gameboy Advance game, though that doesn’t really say much. :P)

Bulbapedia is one of the best sources of information as Pokémon goes – you could at least take a peek.

Perhaps some of you, and I hope not, is asking “what the [expletive removed] is Pokémon?” Using an allegory, you enslave these little demons, you make them stronger by slaughtering weaker demons, and then you gamble with other enslavers regarding which demon can maul the other first. Cockfighting at it’s finest.

Photobucket

Each player takes turns to make an action:
Fight: The Pokémon does a “move”, of which it can have a four of. Can have direct damage (loss of hit points) or indirect damage (reduced stats, incur a status effect etc.)
Pokémon: You can have up to six Pokémon in your party. Switching to a different Pokémon has great tactical application, but consumes a turn.
Bag: Use an item as aid in the battle effort, such as a Portion for healing or a Ball for catching. Not available in competitive battling.
Run: Flee, you coward. Can only be used against wild Pokémon.

Defeating Pokémon yields experience (EXP). After getting a certain amount, which is dependant on the species and the level it’s currently at, it gains a new level. A new level means increased stats, and Pokémon learn new moves and evolve at certain levels.

Evolution: Some Pokémon evolve. The most common way to do so is levelling up. A Squirtle evolves to Wartortle at level 16, and to Blastoise at level 36, for example. Evolutionary stones, such as Fire Stone and Water stone, can be used to evolve certain Pokémon. After reaching a certain level of happiness, Pokémon evolve next time they level up. Pokémon also evolve if they are traded to another player, sometimes they have to hold a certain item as they are traded for successful evolution. There are a few other ways a Pokémon can evolve.

Every Pokémon also has stats, which plays a large part in it’s performance. These are Hit Points, Attack, Defense, Special Attack, Special Defense and Speed. Hit Points is how much damage the Pokémon can take. (Special) Attack and (Special) Defense stats has a big impact on how much damage the Pokémon can take and how much it can dish out. The Pokémon with the highest Speed gets to attack first. (Unless Quick Attack or similar moves are used. If both Pokémon have equal Speed, each have a 50% chance to attack first.)

What’s the difference between Attack/Special Attack? Each move has a type, which can be physical or special.
Physical types are Normal, Fighting, Ground, Flying, Bug, Rock, Ghost, Poison, and Steel.
Special types are Fire, Water, Electric, Grass, Ice, Psychic, Dragon, and Dark.
Note that Ghost is physical and Dark is special, which is slighly counter-intuitive.

Keep in mind that while the most common way for a Pokémon to learn new moves is by leveling up, it can also learn by Technical Machines (TMs), Hidden Machines (HMs) (the difference being that HMs must be used to progress in the game, and can be used an infinite amount of times), as well as Egg Moves (which is learned through breeding).

Regarding types, each Pokémon has either one or two types. Using a move of a certain type can either be super effective, not very effective or not do any damage at all. Here’s a chart from Wikipedia:

Type Chart

All damaging moves have a certain power. Tackle, for example, has 35 power, and Earthquake has 100 power. If a Pokémon and the move it’s using is of the same type, it gets a Same Type Attack Bonus (STAB), which raises the power of a move by 50%, which is very significant.

A Pokémon can also be inflicted with Status Effects. There are five “proper” status effects, and a couple of others such as Flinch, Perish Song etc. They reveal how truly sadistic the game is.
Burn – The Pokémon loses 1/8th of it’s Max HP, and it’s Attack stats are cut in half. (Pokémon with the Guts ability do not compromise their Attack). Fire types and Pokémon with the Water Veil ability are immune to Burn.
Freeze – The Pokémon can’t fight. Every turn, it has 10% of thawing. Ice types and Pokémon with the Magma Armor ability are immune to Freeze.
Paralysis – One of the most common status effects. Speed is reduced to 25% of Max, and the Pokémon has 25% chance of not being able to attack. Pokémon with the Limber ability are immune to Paralysis.
Poison – The Pokémon loses 1/8th of it’s HP each turn in battle. Pokémon can also be Badly Poisoned, in that case the damage taken every turn is expansive. Outside of battle, it loses HP every four steps. Poison and Steel types are immune, as are Pokémon with the aptly named Immunity ability.
Sleep – The Pokémon can’t fight. Will wake up in 1 to 5 turns. The sleeping Pokémon can use moves such as Snore and Sleep Talk, and moves like Dream Eater and Nightmare can affect the sleeper. Vital Spirit and Insomnia makes the Pokémon immune.
And then there are volatile status effects (goes off once the Pokémon is taken out of battle): Attraction, Confusion, Curse, Flinch, Leech Seed, Nightmare, Perish Song, Taunt and Torment.

Moves like Leer and Dragon Dance can affect your or your opponent’s stats. Fairly useless in single player (with the exception of Accuracy and Evasion), it is quite important in competitive battling. Items can also affect stats.

Regarding Accuracy and Evasion, they’re an exception since it’s stats which Pokémon don’t innately have (the exception being Pokémon with the Compoundeyes ability), but can nevertheless be tweaked in battle to affect the likelihood of moves successfully hitting. Moves have different accuracy rates as well.

Pokémon can hold items, to use in both battle and on the field, depending on the circumstances. Berries are automatically used by Pokémon to heal HP, Status Effects and so on. Items such as Mystic Water can raise a type’s effectiveness. There are many uses for held items.

Abilities: Every Pokémon has an ability, which is dependant on which sort of Pokémon it is. They can only have one ability, but certain species have two different abilities (they may have one of them). Some are rather useful, some are rather useless, some are outright [expletive removed] awesome and some can even harm the Pokémon.

A word about Power Points (PP): Moves can only be used a specific amount of times. If the Pokémon is out of PP, it can’t use the move. Once the PPs for all moves are depleted, it uses Struggle, which does damage to the user every turn.

Individual Values (IVs): All Pokémon are equal, but some are more equal than others. A Pokémon’s individual value determine how big it’s stats can get. Not too much of your concern unless your anal about it, I suppose. (I try not to get Pokes with crappy IV, myself. :P)

Effort Values (EVs): Trained Pokémon are stronger than Wild ones, even though they’re at the same level. Why? EVs. Every time a Pokémon defeats another Pokémon, they get EVs in a particular stat, depending on the defeated Pokémon. After a certain amount of EVs, the Pokémon gains a new stat point. A Pokémon can only get a specific amount of EVs.

Natures have some impact on a Pokémon’s stats, since a Pokémon can get 10% increase in one stat and 10% dcrease in another. An Alakazam, for example, would benefit the most from having a Modest nature since it increases Special Attack and decreases Attack. Check out the Bulbapedia page for a nifty chart.

A note about happiness: Certain Pokémon evolve when happy. The moves Return’s and Frustration’s power is based on how happy the Pokémon is. It can also make Pokémon breed faster (hehe).

Catching Pokémon: You can catch wild Pokémon, using Poké Balls. Keep in mind that a Pokémon’s HP is very significant in how likely it is for a Pokémon to be caught, as is Status Effects – it is even more important than the quality of Poké Balls, though that is quite important as well. Legendaries are notoriously hard to catch, and requires cunningness and patience.

Breeding: If you leave two Pokémon at a day care center, they may have eggs. Eggs are hatched by walking (seriously); after a certain amount of steps, the little critter hatches. Pokémon you hatch from eggs are generally superior to their wild counterparts, since you can get those desired IVs at a faster pace. Baby Pokémon are only available through breeding.

Pokémon can breed with another Pokémon of a different species, if they are in the same egg group. A Pokémon may be in two egg groups. Check out the Bulbapedia page for more information. Genderless Pokémon and Baby Pokémon can’t breed.

The mother defines what sort of Pokémon will hatch, but that doesn’t mean the father is insignificant. If the father has a TM, or a Egg Move the hatched Pokémon can get in no other way, the hatched Pokémon will get moves. TMs can thus, in a way, be recycled.

I think that’s all I can think of for now. One learns new things about Pokémon every day. Let it not be said that Pokémon is simplistic. 😛

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