It’s finally here! The new animated sequel to Origins; Pokémon Generations has hit the internet, and it’s awesome. The Pokémon Company released the anime shorts online. Each one excitingly recounts every generation of the video game series. All six Pokémon Generations installments are out, and they don’t disappoint.
Here are full recaps of first 13 Pokémon Generations episodes, along with helpful explanations of the classic game moments the episodes are referencing.
Updated Dec. 23 to include all current episodes.
Episode 1: “The Adventure”
The first few seconds of the first episode will bring players of series way back, back in time. The inaugural segment opens with the 1996 Pokémon Red intro. What a way to start an anime based video game. However, unlike in Red (or Pokémon Go) the protagonist seems to start with a Pikachu during his first venture into the woods. And thus the adventure begins. From Kanto to Kalos, Pikachu battles them all, seeing many of the famous encounters from just about every mainline Pokémon title. And then the too brief fun culminates in a final confrontation with the legendary Zygarde from Pokémon Sun and Moon, a perfect segue into the upcoming game.
Episode 2: “The Chase”
The second episode, ‘The Chase’ focuses strictly on the events of the first generation of Pokémon games. We encounter Detective Looker, who’s in search of Team Rocket’s leader, Giovanni. After raiding one of Team Rocket’s criminal fronts, the casino in Celadon City, Looker and his squad are closing in on the nefarious Giovanni.
After questioning a Team Rocket henchman, we learn that Team Rocket failed to take over The Silph Company (thanks to the Red/Blue protagonist). The scene brought me back to Pokémon Red where as a young child I got lost in the massive Silph building and had to make a few healing trips to the Pokémon Center.
Going back to the episode, Looker finds out that Giovanni is hiding out at the Viridian City Gym. If you don’t remember in Pokémon Red/Blue and Pokémon Advance you were unable to battle Viridian Gym leader. But, after collecting the other seven Gym Badges, the Viridian Gym reopens, and you got to fight the boss Giovanni.
Yet, in the anime, we see that Detective Looker is too late, and Giovanni has already fled the gym. Upon further inspection of the crime scene, Looker finds traces of a Pokémon battle. After a follow-up investigation, we find out that Giovanni awarded badges to two trainers. This would be the protagonist and their rival. However, where the series and the games contrast are on the future of Team Rocket, who have become a mystery.
In all, it took me less than 10 minutes of these videos to fall in love Pokémon again and search for a Pokémon Red copy (though who still has a working Game Boy?). Not only does Generations bring a sense of nostalgia to the series as a whole, but it also is a smart marketing trick to convince fans (and nonfans) to buy Pokémon Sun and Moon so they can continue the fun. And for me, it worked! I can’t wait to purchase the game and to watch the next episode.
Episode 3: “The Challenger”
The third installment of Pokémon Generations just landed on YouTube, and this episode captures an integral yet challenging part of the campaign in Pokémon Red/Blue: the Elite Four. And more importantly, just who defeated them.
We begin with the Elite Four discussing their strategies for defeating this new challenger whom surprisingly collected eight badges very quickly. However, instead of meeting our hero Red we meet the arrogant Blue a.k.a. Gary Oak in the anime series. As Red/Blue players recall, Blue defeated the Elite Four and subsequently became the Champion you face at the games’ conclusion. Without any trouble Blue beats the first three members; however, the real challenge begins when he faces off with the Elite Four leader Lance. And it leads to an impressive styles clash that also shows Generations’ version of Blue picked Squirtle as his starter.
In the end, we see Blue as the new Champion of the Pokémon League, and he’s ecstatic to face off with Red. While this stage of Pokémon Red/Blue was downright impossible (unless you had cheats) for a lot of players this was not the case for Blue. Will the next episode give us a glimpse of Red and Blue’s showdown? Or will we see a different famous scene in Pokémon history? We’ll likely find out next week.
Episode 4: “The Lake of Rage”
In the fourth episode of Pokémon Generations titled “The Lake of Rage,” we once again see the leader of the Elite Four, Lance. But, this time, he’s investigating the rumors around the Red Gyarados raging in the titular Lake of Rage. In Pokémon Gold/Silver after the player catches, defeats or flees the Red Gyarados, Lance will talk with the protagonist about the secret Team Rocket HQ in Mahogany Town. The episode follows up this interaction as we see Lance, Lance’s Dragonite, and the hero raid the base.
The event is fully packed with battle scenes courtesy of Lance’s badass Dragonite. With just one move it stopped Team Rocket’s Pokémon in their tracks. (Though you won’t see anime specific Rocket members like Jesse and James.) After releasing all the Electrodes that were powering the electromagnetic waves machine, we once again see the elusive Red Gyarados. But this time in a much more peaceful manner. Ironically, most Gold/Silver players would catch the Red Gyarados right after this quiet moment. How could Lance pass up an easy Shiny like that?!
Episode 5: “The Legacy”
To cap off the series, The Pokémon Channel released the final two episodes on the same day. In Episode 5, titled “The Legacy,” we once again meet Detective Looker who’s still in search of Team Rocket’s leader Giovanni. In the wake of Team Rocket’s takeover of the Goldenrod Radio Tower, Detective Looker’s investigation leads him to an enigmatic young trainer, Silver. In Pokémon Gold/Silver, Silver is the main villain and — like in Generation II — he is the son of Team Rocket leader Giovanni. However, Silver doesn’t provide much information on the whereabouts of Giovanni. Instead, he tells Booker why Giovanni disappeared in the first place.
Following the events of Episode 2, “The Chase” — which took place three years prior to Episode 5 — Giovanni decides to leave Team Rocket after two young trainers beat him. Thus, for him to create a stronger organization he has to leave and become stronger himself. However, this does not sit well with Silver, who vows to become stronger than Giovanni.
Back in the present, Silver tells Looker that he made it all the way to the Elite Four by doing things his way. Looker then asks Silver that if he hears anything about Giovanni to contact him. However, Silver arrogantly tells him that he would rather stay away from his father’s affairs.
Episode 6: “The Reawakening”
With ancient Japanese music playing in the background, Episode 6 “The Reawakening” follows how the Legendary Beasts came to be. Players first meet Eusine in Pokémon Crystal. Like in the game we see him researching the Burned Tower sans Morty. However, instead of battling the player, Eusine takes us back to ancient Johto.
There in Johto he recounts how during a time of conflict a beautiful tower caught fire engulfing three nameless pokémon in flames. The Legendary Pokémon Ho-Oh brought the three pokémon back to life. They then became the Legendary Beasts Raikou, Entei, and Suicune. People feared these new beasts who — seemingly without explanation — came back to life. Feeling the people’s hatred towards the Legendary Beasts, they decided to leave.
Back in the present, sensing Eusine, the Legendary Beast Suicune appears; however, he quickly vanishes. While Eusine is walking away, one of Ho-Oh’s feathers falls on the ground. Though Eusine failed to capture any Legendary Beasts in Generations, in Pokémon Crystal players can do so. After completing this nearly impossible mission, Eusine will wait for the player to summon Ho-Oh.
Episode 7: “The Vision”
This week’s episode titled “The Vision” takes place during Pokémon Omega Ruby and is part of the Nintendo 3DS enhanced remakes of the Generation III title Pokémon Ruby. In case there was any confusion, Pokémon Generations is more for older players than young kids, and “The Vision” makes it clear of that.
This latest installment of Pokémon Generations picks up steam. We see the protagonist and his Sceptile break into Team Magma’s headquarters. As you may recall, Team Magma is one of two criminal syndicates active in Hoenn. Tabitha, the admin of Team Magma, barks out orders to the grunts to deal with this intruder. In the meantime, Maxie — the leader of Team Magma — asks admin Courtney to stay behind to deal with the intruder while the rest of them take off in the submarine.
While admiring the red siren, Courtney gets a vision of the world changing, a.k.a. a Primal Groudon obliterating the surrounding islands and the rest of Team Magma. Afterward, the main protagonist runs into Courtney and thus begins the epic battle between your Sceptile and Courtney’s Camerupt. Sadly, super fans are left wondering if the protagonist in the anime found the Master Ball during the Team Magma undersea headquarter mission.
Episode 8: “The Cavern”
Like in the game Alpha Sapphire, we see Team Aqua’s leader Archie achieve his greatest goal, to return the world to how it once was by awakening Primal Kyogre. But, instead of seeing the protagonist (aka the player’s character), we see Admin Shelly running in to save the day. She tries to warn Archie that the power of Primal Kyogre wouldn’t create his ideal world., he dismisses her warnings and uses the
Unfortunately, he dismisses her warnings and uses the Blue Orb to rouse the sleeping Kyogre. After being awakened, the ancient Pokémon breaks out of the cavern and creates massive waterspouts driving the weather all over Hoenn out of control.
While Archie, Shelly and the rest of the grunts are in the submarine, admin Matt reports in and gives Archie some unsettling news. Things are going bad, way bad. Archie gasps, as Shelly explains that their would-be utopia rests on the bottom of the ocean.
Archie tries to command Primal Kyogre to stop, but he quickly realizes that he can’t control the Primal Kyogre’s power. Suddenly, Kyogre turns around and summons waves to attack Team Aqua’s submarine. In the last few seconds, we see Kyogre charging at Team Aqua and its leader Archie.
Episode 9: “The Scoop”
Once again, Pokémon Generations takes us to Hoenn where after avoiding a meteoric destruction, reporter Gabby and her cameraman Ty try to uncover the story of a lifetime. If you don’t remember this duo, Gabby and Ty are a pair of co-workers who can be found interviewing trainers all over Pokémon Ruby/Sapphire, as well as the remakes Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire.
In the first few seconds of episode 9, “The Scoop,” we see what appears to be a Pokémon destroying a meteor that’s dangerously close to Earth. Next, we see the duo hack the Mossdeep Space Center computers trying to find out more about the destruction of the meteor. Thus, “The Scoop” retells the adventures the player goes through during the Delta Episode in Omega Ruby/Sapphire.
However, the duo’s presence doesn’t go unnoticed as one of the scientists sees that their database is being hacked. While Gabby is uploading files to her very cute pen drive, she clicks on a video documenting the events that the meteorite almost hit the planet. The video shows that a Rayquaza with a trainer on its back destroyed the meteor. That danger was averted, but from the remnants comes a black triangle which opens up and unleashes Deoxys. What happens next is an epic battle between the protagonist’s Rayquaza and Deoxys. Ending with the trainer capturing this “space” Pokémon.
Back at Mossdeep, Gabby is so captivated by this battle that she wants to find the trainer at its center. Just when they’re about to leave, the reporters caught by a security man and the scientist. But, thanks to Gabby’s quick thinking she and Ty managed to escape with the evidence at hand. The scientist looks back and says that it’s too soon for the world to learn that information.
Episode 10: “The Old Chateau”
Late at night a young travel and her Chansey get lost. However, the are “lucky” enough to find an old chateau to spend the night. Inside the Butler says to them that they are welcome to stay. While walking up the stairs the eyes of a painting turn red and follows the young girl and her Chansey. In the dining hall, there seems to be a large table covered with food, however, when the traveler and her Chansey sit down to eat there is nothing on the table. Yet they don’t seem to notice this and start eating.
After dinner, the Butler escorts them through the hallway. This is when the pair finally realize something is wrong. Out of nowhere the Butler turns into a Haunter and swallows them whole. They wind up on a couch in the library where books fall onto the ground and a piece of a paper lands on the girl’s lap. On it says, “something so peculiar should make out….” Suddenly, a little girl’s spirit appears. What we hear next are the Traveler and Chansey’s screams.
Unlike in Pokémon Diamond/Pearl, the ghosts in “The Old Chateau” have a more active role and seem to be real spirits instead of catchable Pokémon, such as Rotom. While how these spirits came to be is still uncertain there’s a creepypasta circling around that Rotom was behind their deaths.
Episode 11: “The New World”
It’s happening once again in Pokémon history. Another villain wants to either take over the earth, destroy it or create their own. That’s the core plot of this episode of Pokémon Generations titled “The New World.” In the first few seconds, we see Team Galactic commanders, Mars and Jupiter. Therefore, we’re still in Sinnoh region a.k.a. Pokémon Diamond/Pearl. The boss of Team Galactic, Cyrus summons two Legendary Pokémon, Dialga – Master of Time – and Palkia – Master of Space and Dimension. Cyrus’ goal is to command these Legendary Pokémon to destroy the universe so that he may start it again as its god. Cyrus says it’s because he believes that the human spirit is ruining the world, though that’s weak rationalization.
However, Cynthia a.k.a. The Champion comes in with her Garchomp and demands that Cyrus releases the Legendary Pokémon. Just then, the ground begins to shake and a “Pokémon that comes from the shadow” swallows Cyrus. When Cyrus wakes up, he concludes that he’s been transported to Giratina’s world.
Then he quickly realizes that “there’s nothing here, and there’s nothing to here” and thus this place of nothingness is his ideal world. Back at Team Galactic’s headquarters, we see Commander and Head of Team Galactic, Saturn, frantically shouting for Master Cyrus. In the end, we hear Cyrus telling his team to not to look for him. In the closing seconds, we see Saturn understands.
Episode 12: “The Magma Stone”
This episode is set soon after the events of last week’s. We see Charon, Commander of Team Galactic, and two grunts awaken the Legendary Pokémon Heatran deep within Stark Mountain. Heatran doesn’t appreciate that, going berserk. You see, in the games, only the Magma Stone is able to control Heatran. He’s wild and destructive without it, just as Team Galactic wants.
Out of nowhere a red-haired boy appears with a Claydol to stop Team Galactic and Heatran. But, just as Claydol is about to attack he is blasted away by Heatran’s attack. Luckily a Croagunk appears and punches Heatran and Team Galactic, consequently disabling them. Accompanying Croagunk is none other than Detective Looker, although a bit younger and more handsome than in previous episodes. A battle ensues, but this time it’s two against Heatran. However, their combined powers are no match to Heatran’s blasts.
The red-haired boy sees something at the top of a peak that might help them in their battle. With the aid of Claydol and some fancy footwork, he manages to restore the Magma Stone. Afterward, Detective Looker congratulates the young man for restoring peace back to Stark Mountain and saving the Sinnoh region. Meanwhile, Charon and the grunts get away. Outside the mountain, the boy introduces himself as Buck – in the game, he’s the one that keeps the Magma Stone – and his goal is to become the greatest trainer ever. The short closes with Looker and Buck jokingly agreeing to fight some day if they ever cross paths again. Though where was the Diamond/Pearl protagonist in all this? Because they’re there for these moments in the games. Oh well, just another mystery for the series.
Episode 13: “The Uprising”
This week’s episode titled “The Uprising” features the long-awaited Pokémon Generation’s version of Black and White. Yup, we’re headed to the Unova region. We see Gym Leader Iris with her Druddigon running on a desolated field. All of a sudden, lightning strikes the ground and a castle rises from the ground with an elderly man, one of the Seven Sages, spewing sermons about G-Cis, the leader of Team Plasma and the Seven Sages.
One after another, spires of this huge castles come appear, each of them with a sage. Team Plasma grunts along with their Pokémon come running out of the castles. Iris tries to fight them off, but the grunts are too much for her. Thankfully, an Excadrill saves Iris from an attack, and it appears to be that the Excadrill belongs to cowboy aficionado and Gym Leader, Clay from Driftveil City.
Suddenly, all of the Unova Gym Leaders appear to help stop the sages, with each of them stating their personal reason why they want to stop Team Plasma. In the game, The Gym Leaders appear when the player chases after the villain N. Consequently, the Gym Leaders keep the sages busy while the player searches the castle. Though there’s no sign of the protagonist just yet in Generations.
Episode 14: “The Frozen World”
With Thanksgiving, just a few hours away the Pokémon Channel decided to release the new episode on Wednesday. Titled “The Frozen World,” we leave the forest and head to Opelucid City. We once again see Gym Leader Drayden, but this time he’s defending the city against an onslaught of Team Plasma’s Liepard and Purrloin.
From a safe distance, the Sage Zinzolin comes to the conclusion that their Pokémon are no match against Drayden and his Haxorus. Nevertheless, the actual nature of Team Plasma’s plan is revealed as a giant blimp covers the sky of Opelucid City. There we find Colress giving orders to fire the Kyurem Canon. In Pokémon Black and White 2, Team Plasma managed to capture the Legendary Pokémon Kyurem, however how they’ve managed to do so isn’t revealed. Their intention for the Legendary Pokemon is to turn it into a freeze canon.
Back on the ground, we see an exhausted yet reluctant Drayden staring at the sky. Zinzolin comes up to him demanding that he gives him the DNA splicer. Much like in the games, Team Plasma wants to merge Kyurem with either Zekrom or Reshiram into Black Kyurem or White Kyurem with the help of the DNA Splicer. Back in the blimp, Colress forces Kyurem to release more of his power, which unfortunately for Opelucid City it does. The second shot manages to freeze the whole city including its citizens. In the end, Zinzolin walks away with the splicer all the while boasting about Team Plasma’s triumph.
Episode 15: “The King Returns”
Following last week’s episode, we see Team Plasma’s leader Ghetsis making one last attempt to bring Unova under his icy grasp. However, N – the former king of Team Plasma – arrives with the Legendary Pokémon Reshiram, intending to stop Ghetsis. Seeking retribution for N’s betrayal Ghetsis uses the DNA Splitter on Kyurem. Thus, an epic battle ensues between Reshiram and Kyurem. Nonetheless, Kyurem’s power ‘s too great Reshiram, and it’s instantly transformed into a ball of light. Which is absorbed by Kyurem, consequently turning it into White Kyurem.
Spawning fire wings from its back, N can’t believe his eyes that such fusion could exist. Still angry at N’s refusal to be king, Ghetsis orders White Kyurem to attack N. But, what’s left of Reshiram still present in White Kyurem fights this command. Aggravated by White Kyurem refusal, Ghetsis lashes out saying that Pokémon and N are just mere tools in his master plan. Hearing everything, N starts to refer to Ghetsis as his father, explaining to him that Pokémon and humans elevate each other. Fuming from son’s wise words, Ghetsis orders White Kyurem to once again attack N. Yet a fire beam stops the attack, and it turns out to be Zekrom with the Black/White protagonist on its back.
Episode 16: “The Beauty Eternal”
Looks like the series has gotten all the way to Pokémon X/Y. Opening like it was a giant tech event; we see a very charismatic Lysandre — boss of Team Flare and company’s president — and his Pyroar introducing a new product called the Holo Caster. In the event, he shares to the public that the goal for the Holo Caster is to bring the Kalos region closer together, but how it actually will isn’t revealed.
During a flashback, Lysandre is talking to Diantha, an established Kalos actress. Diantha says to Lysandre that beauty isn’t everything and that she looks forward to playing more roles as she gets older. However, Lysandre points out that her duty is to be beautiful forever and that everything beautiful should stay that way forever. And that he will to end the world in an instance so that beauty never fades. Not the most reasonable plan.
Back in the present, Malva (a member of the Elite Four) reports on the success of the Holo Caster and that Lysandre will donate medical equipment and give a grant to a Pokémon Center. However, the news is quickly overshadowed when a pesky reporter asks Lysandre of a secret project called “Project Y.” Consequently, the board members of Lysandre Labs asks the Team Flare Boss about this secret project. But, he quickly informs them that there is no need to concern and that they should put their trust in him.
While in his office he gets some surprising news and he quickly jumps in his helicopter to Geosenge Town. There, he goes to an underground headquarter and is pleased that his plan is almost to complete. “This beautiful world will not just fade away,” he says. Last, we see that the Legendary Pokémon Yveltal, the Destruction Pokémon, has awakened.
Episode 17: “The Investigation”
In the alley of Lumiose City, we see a someone in a suit battling and consequently stealing a woman’s Pokémon. Luckily, Detective Looker is on the case, and he notices something suspicious about this robber. As does Looker’s Espurr Mimi, who nuzzles the leg of this robber, like it knew her. However, the Poké-robber kicks it away in disgust and blasts off.
As Looker chases after her, we flashback to see how Mimi used to nuzzle Emma‘s leg the same as it with the robber. Consequently, Looker begins to suspect that this robber is actually Emma. Looker recounts that Emma was an unfortunate orphan he hired her as his assistant, and recently, she’d been vanishing without explanation.
Soon enough, Mimi and Looker corner the culprit. Mimi delivers a powerful kick to the robber’s helmet which instantly cracks the headpiece open. It turns out that it was indeed Emma committing these crimes. But, it seems that someone has been experimenting on her with Emma having no memory of her actions. So, what exactly happened?
In Pokémon X/Y, Emma grows worried that she and Mimi are a financial burden on Looker. Therefore, Emma sets off to find part-time work at a café which is owned by Lysandre. Consequently, Emma is tricked into being a test subject for Xerosic, the Head Scientist of Team Flare. Xerosic’s Expansion Suit explains her disappearing for long periods of time, which worries Looker greatly. When in the Expansion Suit, Emma is given the codename Essentia and gets superhuman abilities. On top of that, it’s possible to control the suit remotely. allowing for Xerosic to control Emma’s action without her having any recollection.
Just one episode left in Pokémon Generations. Will the series conclude with an epic battle between the protagonist and his nemesis from X/Y, a moment from Sun/Moon, or will it feature something completely new and different? We’ll find out real soon.
Episode 18: “The Redemption”
Sadly, Pokémon Generations comes to its end with “The Redemption.” During the festivities celebrating a new champion — it seems that anyone can become a champion, except for Ash — a tall disheveled man walks to the podium. The mysterious man challenges the champion to battle. A young bystander notices that the mysterious man is similar to one in her stories, and the little girl’s mother takes the viewers back to a time before the events of Pokémon X/Y.
Thus, begins the redemption story of AZ, the former king of the Kalos region. During an ancient era of great strife, there was a man that cared very much for his Floette. However, he lost his close friend during the Kalos War. Several years after being separated from Floette, AZ receives a tiny coffin holding his beloved Pokémon. Grief-stricken, AZ builds a machine to return Floette back to life. And although his beloved monster is resurrected, AZ’s anger won’t go away. He wanted revenge on those who hurt Floette. Thus he turned the machine that brought Floette back to life into a weapon, The Ultimate Weapon, to end the war. But, when Floette realizes that so many lives were sacrificed to bring her back, she abandons AZ, leaving him the broken man we see today.
Back in present time, the champion (aka X/Y‘s protagonist) defeats AZ’s last Pokémon. Now that he lost, AZ feels free from all of his sorrow and most of all the part of him seeking redemption. Sensing AZ’s new lease on life, Floette glides through the sky and returns to its master. It’s a lovely, happy ending, and a great way to conclude Pokemon Generations.
This fascinating series of animated shorts brought to life some of the most memorable of each generation. Let’s hope that some day we get another installment covering Sun/Moon and all the entries still to come.
The adventures of the Pokémon and their trainers continue in Pokémon Sun and Moon out now for the Nintendo 3DS.