Gotta Catch 'Em All? Top 10 Pokedex Strategies

The Pokemon games (and let's be clear, the games came FIRST not the TV show) were created in Japan in 1996 by GameFreak, the development studio that is behind almost the entire Pokemon Empire.

Originally the games consisted of Pokemon Green and Red, but when the decision was made to release the games outside of Japan the color scheme was revised to Pokemon Red and Blue.

Later the wizards at GameFreak came up with the “Joining Game” concept - that is a third color that included pretty much all of the content from the first pair in the gen.

To be clear there were always TWO colors per generation - the idea being that the two versions would add up into almost a complete Pokedex when their version-exclusive Pokemon were swapped between them. That encouraged players to find a partner with the other half of the generations game and play with them.

As time passed and new generations were introduced and released very little changed - and one element that did not change at all from gen to gen was the need (the overpowering desire) to Catch 'Em All!

Completing your Pokedex might sound like a very straight-forward proposition but in reality it is far from that. The long-term goal to complete the Dex - especially in later generations - prompted players to devise their own strategies so that eventually there were dozens of individual strategies, most of which were variations on a theme.

Regardless of how close or far those variations were, the excitement of both the story and the secondary goals of collecting them all and embracing the online player-vs-player side of Pokemon game play means that for a lot of players their own personal strategy tends to dominate their play and, as a result, knowledge of alternative strategies is not so widespread.

That being the case we decided that it was time to take a look at the different strategies, collect them in one place, and then rank them - making for the perfect subject of one of our Top 10 Features!

Making Sense of the PokeDex

Pokemon Logistics

While building in a mechanism to allow lucky trainers to actually obtain the rare and Legendary Pokemon has been an evolutionary process, today it is a very well-designed and workable one. That is compared to when it was not.

Up until Gen-4 for a trainer to have full sets of the Legendary for their game was very rare. Generally great effort was required to make that happen, but today that is no longer the case.

While the process still requires significant effort, it is not so monumental that it is the exception to the rule any longer. The games are divided into generations with full trading and connecting within each gen but very little outside of each.

In the early generations that required the use of a “link” or game cable, but in recent generations it has all gone WiFi and so is far simpler and easier.

The official Generations List

So here are the generations for Pokemon divided by the gen that the specific game belongs to in terms of release and logic (but not necessarily reality).

Bear in mind that Alpha Sapphire and Omega Ruby are released as part of Generation Six - but in reality since they are the re-release of an expanded and updated (read that “Improved Version”) of Pokemon Ruby and Pokemon Sapphire, that makes them part of Generation THREE of the games!

Of course neither Alpha or Omega can actually link with or talk to either Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald, or for that matter Fire Red and Leaf Green, all of which are also part of Gen-3, the point is rather academic...

The Pokemon Game Generations

Gen-1: Pokemon Red, Blue, Green and Yellow.

Gen-2: Pokemon Gold, Silver, and Crystal.

Gen-3: Pokemon Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald, Fire Red, and Leaf Green.

Gen-4: Pokemon Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, Heart Gold, and Soul Silver.

Gen-5: Pokemon Black, White, Black 2, and White 2.

Gen-6: Pokemon X and Y, Alpha Sapphire, Omega Ruby.

Officially we are now on the sixth generation of the main Pokemon Games Series, and the games that were released as part of this generation - X&Y and Alpha and Omega - can link and trade with each other just like the Black and Whites could and so on, but games from previous generations can not.

So for example you can not link and trade Pokemon from Diamond or Black with X or Y and vice-versa, however that only applies to two-way trading.

Starting with Gen-3 there was a mechanism put in place for one-way transfers of Pokemon from the closest previous generation to the next one - the idea being to allow trainers to move their treasured Pokemon from the previous gen to the current gen.

While that will not allow you to move, say for example, a Pokemon from Gen-3 to Gen-6, you CAN move your Gen-3 Pokemon to Gen-4, then move them from Gen-4 to Gen-5, and so finally get them into Gen-6!

What is The Pokedex?

When Professor Oak was 10-years-old every Pokemon Trainer carried around a hardbound book called the Pokedex that contained a set of pages on which a Trainer could enter details about the Pokemon that they encountered and paste in a photo or two.

A lot has changed since Oak was a sapling!

For one thing, when Ash Ketchum attained his tenth birthday and struck out on the long road to becoming a Pokemon Master the science of Pokemon had finally been quantified, with the professionals from researchers to Gym Leaders, Champions to Chumps all agreeing to form an International body to oversee the sport and science attached.

One of the first things that this new standards body did was to formalize the data collection process, and set the technical standards by which the Pokedex was created. That was critically necessary because despite the fact that the Pokemon collection, training, breeding, and battling systems had been in place for literally generations (human generations mind you) they were STILL discovering previously unknown Pokemon and they continue to to this day!

That being the case, the expanded electronic Pokedex, with all of its sensors and special bits is more important than ever - which begs the question: What is a Pokedex?

The Modern Pokedex

A Pokedex is a special hand-held electronic device that is part encyclopedia, part PDA, and part PC. Over time it has evolved to include telecommunications capabilities, network connectivity, digital cameras, and much much more in much the same way that the wireless phone has evolved.

Even the crudest early examples were able to record and retain information on the various Pokemon of the world and read that data back to the trainer in the field. As the devices became more complex they offered far more functions, making the information they contained far more useful.

Designed to passively find and record data on every Pokemon that the Trainer who owns and carries the device encounters, the Dex will add new Pokemon as they are found.

Once the Trainer actually captures an example of the Pokemon, the Dex will interface with the digital storage device in which the Pokemon is stored (the Pokeball) and will then finalize its entry and upload it to the Pokemon Database via the closest Network Connection as soon as it can make one.

While the games have not included much detail in terms of model and tech for the Pokedex, the Trading Card Game has revealed some basic information about the devices... For example the first commercially successful version of the device - and the one that was used for Gen I Trainers - is the Pokedex HANDY505 model..

The second major Dex model is the HANDY808 (Gen 2), while the HANDY 909 (Gen 3) and HANDY910i (Gen 4) are the next revealed.

While the Pokedex model for the current Gen (Gen 6) is still the HANDY910, word has it that its revision number is vii, and while it is using the same basic hardware as the HANDY910i its firmware has been upgraded and its software updated.

So now we know the answer to the question.

The Minimum Requirements

Moving on to the answer to the next logical question - what are the requirements to have Caught Them All? - the answer is different for each game generation!

To have Caught Them All and completed your Pokedex you must:

Generation 1: Have owned all Pokemon but Mew.

Generation 2: Have owned all Pokemon except Mew and Celebi.

Generation 3: Have owned all except Jirachi and Deoxys for base games, and all except Celebi, Deoxys, Ho-Oh, Lugia, Mew, and Jirachi for remakes.

Generation 4: Have owned all except Arceus, Celebi, Darkrai, Deoxys, Ho-Oh, Jirachi, Lugia, Manaphy, Mew, Phione, and Shaymin

Generation 5: Have owned all except Arceus, Celebi, Darkrai, Deoxys, Genesect, Jirachi, Keldeo, Manaphy, Meloetta, Mew, Phione, Shaymin, and Victini.

Generation 6: Have owned all except Arceus, Celebi, Darkrai, Diancie, Genesect, Jirachi, Keldeo, Manaphy, Meloetta, Mew, Shaymin, and Victini,

So with that in mind, we thought we would point out that you know, you don't actually have to CATCH them all, you just have to OWN them all...

And even then you know, the word “ALL” is very loosely interpreted to mean “The ones we say and not every one we list” so hey! Yeah! There we go!

At the risk of repeating ourselves, with that in mind here are the Top 10 Strategies to the process of Catching (and Owning) Them All:

Posted: 31st Mar 2015 by CMBF
Pokemon Omega Ruby, Nintendo DS, Gameboy Advance,