The Finest Pokémon Video games, Ranked from Finest to Worst


For greater than 25 years, developer Sport Freak has discovered a technique to reinvent the Pokémon franchise for every new technology of players. Each brand-new Pokémon trainers and Pokémon masters are captivated by these cute (and generally scary) little monsters. Perhaps it’s the drive to catch ’em all that retains gamers coming again. Or maybe it’s how cute these little pocket monsters may be. Regardless of the cause, gamers proceed to return to or begin exploring the Pokémon franchise.

Every recreation has a fairly constant really feel to it. Every follows the one earlier than it however builds a little bit extra into the Pokémon world. With each new iteration of Pokémon, new options and Pokémon are delivered to the desk. Though Pokémon veterans could discover every recreation acquainted to the final, every holds a barely new and immersive approach of bringing gamers into the world of Pokémon. And it appears to be like like the subsequent new Pokémon installment, Pokémon Legends: Arceus, may break the mildew completely with a brand new, open-world recreation that appears a bit like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild. This franchise positively is aware of find out how to maintain gamers coming again for extra!

Additional studying

Since Sport Freak has been round for therefore lengthy and has produced so many various variations of Pokémon, we determined to share which Pokémon video games we predict can be greatest for newcomers. We’ve additionally included among the greatest spin-off Pokémon video games and Pokémon recreation remakes so new gamers can discover the huge world of Pokémon in several methods. It’s vital to keep in mind that, on the earth of Pokémon, “greatest” and “worst” are relative. Each entry on this listing is nice, however when you’re in search of a superb entry into the universe, these are what we propose.

1. Pokémon Gold/Silver/Crystal (technology 2)

Starter Pokémon: Chikorita, Cyndaquil, Totodile

Pokémon Gold and Silver added 100 Pokémon to the unique 151, together with arguably the very best trio of starters Pokémon has seen. Past including to the Pokédex, technology two made nice strides in a number of areas over the unique. For starters, you now had to consider the time of day when attempting to catch new Pokémon, because the day/evening cycle neatly added a layer of depth to your time spent within the lengthy grass.

Gold and Silver added the Kanto area to the map, connecting Johto with the landmass that began the phenomenon. With 16 gymnasium leaders to greatest, Gold and Silver stay the deepest, lengthiest Pokémon video games ever created.

Including to the techniques seen in Pokémon Yellow, technology two leaned into dual-types, permitting you to make a extra diverse and strategically numerous group to deliver into battle. The Johto area occurs to be our favourite to discover as properly and has the very best legendary birds (Lugia and Ho-Oh). This installment additionally added the three legendary canine Pokémon — Raikou, Suicune, and Entei — which might be discovered roaming all through Johto after an preliminary static encounter.

We’d be remiss to not point out HeartGold and SoulSilver, the improved DS remakes of Gold and Silver, however we’ll get to that in our remake-specific part beneath.

2. Pokémon Crimson/Blue/Yellow (gen 1)

Pokemon blue and red

Starter Pokémon (Blue/Crimson): Charmander, Squirtle, Bulbasaur

Starter Pokémon (Yellow): Pikachu

Partly as a consequence of nostalgia, partly as a consequence of how these video games nonetheless really feel nice right this moment, technology one’s trio of fantastic Pokémon video games take our second spot. To today, technology one has the very best assortment of Pokémon. We’ll always remember the unique 151 nor Ash’s first journey. From the opening moments in Pallet City to picking your first starter, racking up gymnasium badges, preventing off Crew Rocket and defeating the Elite 4, Pokémon Crimson and Blue simply really feel proper.

Positive, among the deeper mechanics the collection is understood for now aren’t current within the unique video games, however there’s one thing about their streamlined identification that also brings a smile to our faces. Pokémon Yellow introduced the collection to full colour, and having Pikachu by our aspect made us really really feel like we had been Ash on a journey to catch ’em all. Technology one will all the time maintain a particular place in our hearts. It’s magical.

3. Pokémon Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald (gen 3)

Pokmeon Ruby and Sapphire

Starter Pokémon: Treecko, Torchic, Mudkip

Technology three is when Pokémon video games actually began to lean into natures, EV techniques, and IV techniques, emphasizing not solely the species however the particular member of that species in your celebration. The ability of the very best Sport Boy Advance video games made every mannequin of the now 386 Pokémon extra vibrant.

Whereas we predict the 135 new Pokémon as a bunch didn’t examine to the 100 added in gen two, Ruby and Sapphire had one of many neater areas. The Hoenn island area felt bigger than earlier areas and was typically a extra fascinating space to discover. A pair of stellar gen three remakes, Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, can be found on Nintendo 3DS.

4. Pokémon Sword and Defend (gen 8)

Pokemon Sword and Shield

Starter Pokémon: Grookey, Scorbunny, Sobble

The newest Pokémon video games are the primary mainline titles launched as a Nintendo Swap recreation, and Sport Freak has lastly realized our longtime dream of getting a completely 3D Pokémon journey on a house console. Within the British-themed Galar area, you possibly can enterprise into the brand new Wild space and seize monsters, or comply with the set pathways from city to city which were within the collection for the reason that very starting. Both approach, Pokémon at the moment are simply out and about as an alternative of being hidden in randomized encounters, so frustration is vastly diminished.

With 400 Pokémon to catch and the addition of the Dynamax system to energy up your monsters, Pokémon Sword and Defend can maintain you busy for hours. Nonetheless, the elimination of longtime monsters from the sport, together with Psyduck and Squirtle, does imply you possibly can’t catch ‘em all this time. Fortuitously, with the arrival of the sport’s Isle of Armor DLC  and Crown Tundra DLC, you’ll have an opportunity to see new environments within the Galar area, catch new Pokémon, and battle new foes.

5. Pokémon Extremely Solar/Moon (gen 7)

Pokemon sun and moon

Starter Pokémon: Rowlet, Litten, Popplio

Solar and Moon and the improved Extremely Solar and Extremely Moon switched up the usual Pokémon development a bit. Set throughout the islands of Alola, Solar and Moon launched gamers to Crew Cranium and the Aether Basis, a bunch devoted to defending Pokémon. Relatively than progressing via numerous cities’ gyms, you needed to full island trials, which usually included a small dungeon and a battle with a robust Pokémon. Afterward, you’d be capable to battle the island’s Kahuna.

The 80 new Pokémon had been among the most fascinating to be added for the reason that early video games, and the Alolan variations of unique Pokémon felt impressed. Z-Strikes, Extremely Beasts, and an expanded tackle Mega Evolutions added welcome mechanics into the fold. There was even a Pokémon Snap-model mini-game, making this among the best 3DS video games you should buy.

6. Pokémon X/Y (gen 6)

Pokemon X and Y

Starter Pokémon: Chespin, Fennekin, Froakie

Pokémon X and Y marked the collection’ first really 3D expertise. The digicam perspective switched from top-down to a more in-depth, behind-the-body angle, which gave the world of Pokémon a way of scope it hadn’t seen earlier than. The France-inspired Kalos area had aptitude and elegance and featured one of many largest mega-cities we’d seen to date.

Although X and Y solely launched 72 new Pokémon, it did mark the start of Mega Evolutions. The storyline considerably disappoints, however the increased constancy presentation supplied by the Nintendo 3DS {hardware} made Pokémon fashions really pop throughout battle sequences, permitting for crisper preventing animations.

7. Pokémon Diamond/Pearl/Platinum (gen 4)

Pokemon Diamond Pearl Platinum

Starter Pokémon: Turtwig, Chimchar, Piplup

Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum served an vital position within the evolution of Pokémon. They regarded markedly higher than gen three Pokémon, because of the Nintendo DS, however they primarily confirmed the place the franchise would finally go. Technology 4 introduced a vital characteristic: On-line buying and selling and battling. This made filling out the Pokédex, which then neared 500 with the assistance of the brand new 107 pocket monsters, extra of a world effort.

You didn’t should know individuals with copies of the sport to commerce. As an alternative, you may simply hop on-line and make a commerce for what you wanted. On-line battling enables you to actually see who was the very best coach for the primary time in collection historical past. Technology 4 is nice due to its technological improvements, however it’s one of many extra forgettable Pokémon time durations total.

8. Pokémon White/Black and White/Black 2 (gen 5)

Pokemon Black and White

Starter Pokémon: Snivy, Tepig, Oshawott

Technology 5 was an oddity. It was the primary within the collection to get a direct sequel, with Black 2 and White 2 releasing a 12 months after the originals. The sequels did retread acquainted territory, however instructed a brand new story and featured some new areas and new Pokémon. Technology 5 additionally holds the report for essentially the most Pokémon, with 156 new Pokémon to catch.

Much more so than Diamond and Pearl, although, gen 5, particularly the sequels, felt like a stopgap for the collection’ subsequent evolution. Whereas we regard technology 5 because the “worst,” we nonetheless assume it’s fairly darn good. It didn’t introduce a lot new in any respect, however the true sequel idea was intriguing nonetheless.

The perfect Pokémon recreation remakes

When you could have a profitable formulation, it’s exhausting to wish to change it. The Pokémon video games have discovered their area of interest viewers and have managed to maintain this viewers entertained no matter graphics. Nonetheless, the Pokémon franchise has managed to push out just a few remakes which might be value your time. Though these video games are virtually an identical to the video games listed above, they do have some enhancements to every recreation that make them value trying out and had been normally appropriate with the newest installment in the primary collection, permitting for some fascinating cross-generation buying and selling and battling.

1. Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver (gen 4)

Pokemon heartgold soulsilver

Starter: Chikorita, Cyndaquil, Totodile

In the event you haven’t guessed but, Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver are enhanced variations of their predecessors, Pokémon Gold and Silver. This recreation was launched to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Gold and Silver, which had been initially launched in 1999. The creators labored to make sure that the sport felt like a brand new recreation whereas additionally making certain that it revered the sentiments of those that beloved the originals.

The video games maintain just a few new options that initially solely Pokémon Crystal had. It’s additionally the primary Pokémon recreation that allowed the participant’s celebration to comply with them within the outer world. It was just like how Pikachu would comply with you round in Pokémon Yellow. There have been additionally a handful of minigames that had been added. Gamers might use the Nintendo DS touchscreen to compete within the Pokéathlon. Moreover, the GB Sounds was a brand new merchandise and would change the background music to the unique 8-bit music from Pokémon Gold and Silver.

2. Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen (gen Three remake)

Pokemon firered leafgreen

Starters: Charmander, Squirtle, Bulbasaur

The primary remake for Sport Freak, FireRed and LeafGreen are the 2004 enhanced remakes of the unique Crimson and Blue. Though they had been made based mostly on Crimson and Blue, they’re truly a part of the third technology of Pokémon video games. The sport takes us again to the Kanto area, giving us reminiscences of among the Pokémon we’ve seen earlier than.

Nonetheless, on the finish of the sport, we’re welcomed to the Sevii Islands, which is a totally new space that wasn’t out there in both Crimson or Blue. This island stands out as a result of it holds Pokémon that had been usually unique to the Johto area and has just a few post-game missions that may be enjoyable. What’s extra, as soon as the missions on the Sevii Islands are accomplished, gamers had been capable of commerce Pokémon with gamers who had Ruby or Sapphire, making it attainable to have Hoenn-exclusive Pokémon as properly.

3. Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire (gen 6)

Pokemon Omega Ruby Alpha Sapphire

Starters: Treecko, Torchic, Mudkip

These of us who most well-liked Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire had been invited again to the sport with Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. The sport is a part of the sixth technology of Pokémon video games and was performed on the Nintendo 3DS. Though the sport is a remake, Sport Freak labored to make sure that it had among the modifications from later generations.

We noticed Pokémon with cut up sorts from the fourth technology and had limitless TM utilization and triple battles from the fifth technology. In addition they added options from Pokémon X and Y, similar to Tremendous Coaching and Mega Evolution. One of many new mechanics that stood out was the power to make use of Latios or Latias to fly round Hoenn. It is because when utilizing these Pokémon to fly, we might run into “mirage spots,” which had Pokémon that weren’t in any other case out there within the Hoenn area. This contains quite a few legendary Pokémon from earlier generations.

4. Pokémon Good Diamond and Shining Pearl

Standing in the secret base full of Pokémon statues.

Starters: Turtwig, Chimchar, Piplup

The 2021 launch of Pokémon Good Diamond and Pokémon Shining Pearl lastly introduced players a pair of long-requested remakes. The 2 traditional Nintendo 3Ds titles come to the Nintendo Swap with up to date gameplay, enhanced visuals, an expanded endgame.

We praised the sport in our evaluation for faithfully translating Pokémon Diamond and Pokémon Pearl in a approach that felt genuine to the originals. That may be a little bit of a double-edged sword, because the linear path and lack of difficult gameplay might be interesting for younger players, however could flip off collection veterans. The Underground has been expanded into the brand new Grand Underground. This finish recreation space now accommodates a sprawling dungeon, the place you possibly can battle and seize Pokémon of assorted sorts. It’s nice for gathering XP or filling out your Pokédex.

5. Pokémon Extremely Solar and Extremely Moon (gen 7)

pokemon ultra sun ultra moon

Starters: Rowlet, Litten, Popplio

As a part of the seventh technology of Pokemon video games, Pokemon Extremely Solar and Extremely Moon improve the variations of the unique Solar and Moon in a approach that makes them fulfilling. Critics and gamers had been a bit divided on how this recreation felt. On one hand, the extra options had been wonderful. However, it didn’t stray too removed from the unique story, which made it really feel like the identical recreation over once more.

Nonetheless, we noticed some nice new options added to the sport. Issues like Extremely Beasts, new types of legendary Pokémon Necrozma, and a brand new Lycanroc kind. We might additionally journey across the Alola area to gather Totem Stickers, which might then give us an opportunity to get a Totem-sized variant of a Pokémon. We additionally had just a few new actions: Mantine Surf allow us to surf throughout the area’s seas, the Alola Picture Membership obtained us to take footage with our Pokémon, and Extremely Warp Trip allow us to journey via Extremely Wormholes and encounter Extremely Beasts in their very own world. In fact, there have been additionally the brand new Z-Strikes for a handful of Pokémon and the improve to the Rotom Pokedex, which added Roto-Loto.

Finest Pokémon spin-off video games

Exterior of the mainline video games, there are dozens upon dozens of Pokémon experiences. A few of them diverge barely from the core formulation, and others are completely totally different. Make no mistake about it, the Pokémon franchise has produced plenty of duds that felt like money grabs. (Pokémon Thriller Dungeon collection, anybody?) However some Pokémon spin-offs work fairly properly. Listed below are our favorites.

1. New Pokémon Snap

New Pokémon Snap is the newest launch within the Pokémon franchise and one of many collection’ greatest. Half amusement park trip, half puzzle recreation, New Pokémon Snap duties you with gathering footage of Pokémon as you’re carted round on a self-driving automobile. You earn factors and stars based mostly on the standard of the photographs as you enterprise throughout a number of maps. Getting the proper shot usually comes right down to cautious timing and studying what lures or actions in your half get the fitting response from the Pokémon. There are hidden pathways to search out, and the wild Pokémon develop into more and more snug with you on repeat visits, resulting in much more alternatives to snap an fascinating image. Seeing these cute creatures of their pure habitat is enjoyable and charming, and New Pokémon Snap is the proper recreation to calm down with.

2. Pokémon Stadium

Pokémon Stadium

Pokémon Stadium introduced our pals to 3D lengthy earlier than the mainline collection when it launched on Nintendo 64. The sport used the usual turn-based battling system, rendering your entire favorites from the unique 151 within the glory they deserved.

Working our approach via the stadium cups and enjoying multiplayer towards pals was a blast. The perfect half about Stadium, although, was the Switch Pak. The N64 controller attachment enables you to insert your copy of Pokémon Crimson, Blue, or Yellow to make use of your private assortment within the recreation’s thrilling 3v3 battles.

3. Pokémon Conquest

Pokémon Conquest

Pokémon Conquest for Nintendo DS spun the Pokémon formulation into a beautiful ways expertise. Set within the new Ransei area, it instructed a completely unique story stuffed with warlords and waging factions. Whereas the turn-based ways gameplay wasn’t as deep or difficult as video games similar to Hearth Emblem and Last Fantasy Techniques, it was an ideal introduction to the style and contained all of Pokémon’s patented allure.

4. Pokémon TCG On-line

Pokemon TCG online

Pokémon started its life as a collection of video video games, however the buying and selling card recreation has taken on a lifetime of its personal. Revealed within the West by none aside from Wizards of the Coast — the identical firm behind what may be the most well-liked buying and selling card recreation on the earth, Magic: the Gathering — Pokémon’s bodily spin-off is easy to know however rife with depth. Pokémon TCG On-line is a free, on-line model of the tabletop recreation, match with the newest expansions and a modern interface. Even higher, every pack of bodily playing cards comes with a redemption code, permitting you to double down digitally.

5. Pokémon Snap

Pokémon Snap

An on-rails shooter about taking candid pictures of Pokémon of their pure habits for Professor Oak? Signal us up. The unique Pokémon Snap as a Nintendo 64 recreation targeted extra on the great thing about these magical creatures somewhat than their deft fight expertise. We beloved each second of it, particularly after we captured a completely good picture of a fire-breathing Charizard.

6. Pokémon Go


Pokémon Go is essentially the most profitable Pokémon recreation of all time by way of participant depend. The cell sensation enables you to be a real-life Pokémon coach anyplace on the earth. Utilizing AR know-how, Pokémon pop up whether or not you’re strolling down the sidewalk or hanging out in your personal yard.

7. Pokémon Unite

Gameplay from the Japanese Pokémon UNITE beta test.

Pokémon meets League of Legends in Pokémon Unite, the first-ever Pokémon MOBA. Customizable trainers battle 5 versus 5, utilizing among the hottest Pokémon from the collection. It has traditional assault strikes, evolutions, and cute outfits for Pokémon to put on. What’s to not love?

8. Pokémon: Let’s Go

Pokemon: let's go

Pokémon: Let’s Go for Nintendo Swap is extremely near being thought of a mainline Pokémon recreation. In spite of everything, it’s a largely devoted remake of Pokémon Yellow rendered in stunning 3D visuals, full with battling, the gymnasium badge development, and the Elite 4. The place Let’s Go differs is the act of catching Pokémon.

Utilizing Pokémon Go as an affect, a simplistic catch mini-game commences when operating right into a wild Pokémon. Let’s Go additionally depicts wild Pokémon roaming the overworld, so that you all the time know what you’re stepping into beforehand. Pokémon: Let’s Go is an excellent melding of two sorts of Pokémon video games.

9. Pokémon Puzzle League

Pokémon Puzzle League is basically simply Tetris Assault with a distinct coat of paint, however it’s nonetheless one of many extra entertaining Pokémon video games outdoors of the primary collection. The sport is easy: the participant’s board is on one aspect of the display with the opponent’s on the opposite.

Each boards will refill with the tiles and gamers should rearrange the tiles to create strains of three or extra in a row. Doing so will clear the tiles out of your board and ship blocks to your opponent’s, which they’ll should filter. The sport is simple however difficult and is especially enjoyable to play towards one other particular person. The presence of assorted characters from Pokémon additionally provides it a heat feeling of nostalgia.

10. Pokémon Pinball

Pokémon Pinball for the Sport Boy Shade is surprisingly addictive for a recreation with solely two tables. Hitting sure objects on the desk will trigger Pokémon to seem, and gamers can then catch them by hitting them with the ball a number of occasions earlier than the time restrict runs out.

Although it’s a primary recreation, there are some fascinating features to it. It has a misshapen recreation cartridge that accommodates a battery-powered “rumble” characteristic so as to add some haptic suggestions. This was a singular novelty for the Sport Boy when this recreation was launched.

11. Pokémon Café Combine

Pokémon cafe mix

Pokémon Café Combine is a free-to-play recreation that requires you to finish puzzles. The sport stars you and an Eevee, who’re house owners of a café the place Pokémon come and order Pokémon-themed meals and drinks. To satisfy every order, you need to full a puzzle to organize the corresponding merchandise. You’ll have to clear Pokémon icons on-screen by linking them collectively in a hoop. Whenever you end a degree, you’re capable of improve your café with custom-made flooring and designs that draw in several Pokémon. After some time, these Pokémon can even develop into a part of your workers.

This recreation is just like plenty of cell video games in the marketplace. First-time gamers who attempt it out will get the grasp of it pretty shortly. It’s a enjoyable and remedy recreation for gamers on the go to check out. You’ll be able to play the sport on each the Nintendo Swap and cell gadgets, however the recreation is simply supported within the Swap’s hand-held mode. Pokemon Cafe Combine isn’t an modern recreation that may garner particular awards, however it’s a enjoyable recreation for Pokémon followers to play.

12. Pokken Match DX

Pokken Match DX is a Tekken-impressed preventing recreation that places you in direct management of your chosen Pokémon, battling your technique to the highest. This deluxe model is an expanded and upgraded port of the 2016 Wii U launch, bringing with it expanded rosters and gameplay modes to the Nintendo Swap.

The motion shifts between 3D and 2D, and efficiently blends Pokémon powers with conventional melee fight. The result’s a recreation that’s welcoming to Pokémon followers however deep sufficient to fulfill preventing recreation aficionados. Pokken Match encompasses a single-player marketing campaign however actually shines in its on-line aggressive multiplayer mode.

13. Detective Pikachu

Detective Pikachu

Detective Pikachu is the primary of its sort throughout the Pokémon franchise. It’s an journey recreation that takes you thru a robust narrative. You play as Tim Goodman, who stumbles upon a Pikachu that he can oddly perceive. We come to search out out that this specific Pikachu is definitely the Pokémon of Tim’s father, Harry Goodman. We additionally come to be taught that Harry has disappeared. Now it’s as much as you and your new Pikachu to search out Harry and unravel the secrets and techniques of the Pokémon Complete Laboratory.

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