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Generation IV

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Get it? Because the name is unknown. The subject of this article has no official name.
The name currently in use is a fan designator; see below for more information.
Generation IV
Pokémon Pearl Version
Title screen of Pokémon Pearl Version
Debut En April 22, 2007
Jp September 28, 2006
Pokémon 493 (107 new)
Main games Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum
Region introduced Sinnoh
Other RPGs HeartGold and SoulSilver
Contains remakes of Generation II
Battle arena games Battle Revolution
Storage games Ranch
End En March 4, 2011 (1412 days)
Jp September 18, 2010 (1451 days)

The fourth generation of Pokémon games is the fourth set of Pokémon games released.

Like Generation II followed from Generation I, Generation IV follows from Generation III, although it is unlike Generation II in that it is not a direct sequel (Hoenn is inaccessible in all Generation IV games). Like previous generations, Generation IV focuses on one main region across three games, the Sinnoh region featured in Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum on the Nintendo DS, released in 2006 and 2008 (and 2007 and 2009 outside Japan). Also like Generation II, the Generation IV games retain much compatibility with their Generation III counterparts, though in a different manner, and introduce many new Pokémon which are related to those of the previous three generations.

Much like Generation III remade the Generation I games, the Generation II games also received much anticipated remakes in the form of HeartGold and SoulSilver, and through details revealed in the five main games, Generation IV is thus known to be contemporaneous with Generation II, occurring three years after Generation I and Generation III. Like all generations, the handheld games are joined by home console games; Pokémon Battle Revolution and My Pokémon Ranch were released for the Wii during this generation.

Advances in gameplay

Much like how Generation II enhanced Generation I mostly by building on its features, Generation IV builds on the features introduced in Generation III. The advancements introduced in Generation IV include:

  • The addition of 107 new Pokémon, bringing the total to 493. New evolutionary relatives abound in this generation, including those of Electabuzz, Magmar, and Eevee.
  • The addition of 113 new moves, bringing the total to 467.
  • The addition of 47 new Abilities (and removal of the unused Cacophony), bringing the total to 123. Many older Pokémon can now have one of two Abilities, rather than the single Ability they could have in Generation III.
  • Four more boxes in the Pokémon Storage System, bringing the total to 18, for a total of 540 Pokémon.
  • Another new region to explore, Sinnoh, yet again with its own Gym Leaders and Elite Four. Player characters are again changed.
  • Four new variants of Poké Ball, retaining the seven introduced in Generation III.
  • A new villainous team, Team Galactic, whose intent is to capture Dialga and Palkia, said to be the creators of the Pokémon universe, and remake it in the image of their leader, Cyrus.
  • The return of the real-time and days of the week system from Generation II, with enhanced transitions between the time periods of the day.
  • A three-dimensional rendering of the overworld, rather than just sprites, with the same style seen in previous games.
  • Moves are now designated physical or special based on the move itself, rather than its type. There is also now the category of status that includes moves that do not do direct damage such as Toxic, Recover, and Destiny Bond.
  • Pokémon are now able to be traded and battled over the Internet through the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection.
  • When items are bought and sold, the item's proper plural is used, rather than a conditional (s). In past generations, the conditional (s) rendered selling some items, like the Silk Scarf or DeepSeaTooth, odd, with "SILK SCARF(S)" and "DEEPSEATOOTH(S)" used regardless of if one or many were sold. Selling one of these items now renders as "Turned over the DeepSeaTooth and received PokémonDollar.png100," while selling multiple renders as "Turned over the DeepSeaTeeth and received PokémonDollar.png200."
  • Many words previously displayed with all letters being capital are now displayed correctly, such as SmokeScreen instead of SMOKESCREEN or Pokémon instead of POKéMON. Names of Pokémon, however, remain fully capitalized.
  • Pokédex is now updated to show Pokémon forms, including back sprites.

Alterations from Generation III

Further additions in Platinum

  • Another new Battle Frontier, with several different facilities from the one in Hoenn.
  • The ability to record and share battles with other players and in the Battle Frontier over the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection.
  • The expansion of the Sinnoh Pokédex, making the total of 150 (in Diamond and Pearl) and 210 (in Platinum) Pokémon in the Sinnoh Pokédex.

Further additions in HeartGold and SoulSilver

  • The re-introduction of the seven Poké Balls made from Apricorns, unavailable since Generation II.
  • The first Pokémon in the party can now follow the player outside of battle almost anywhere in the overworld.
  • Instead of Contests, the Pokéathlon games are used.
  • Ability to register two key items instead of just one.
  • The Pokédex can now show the different forms of Castform and Cherrim, whereas in Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum, it could not.

Regions

Sinnoh

Sinnoh
Main article: Sinnoh

Like Generation III, Generation IV introduces a new region disconnected from all previous ones, the Sinnoh region, found far north of Kanto. Being that it is so far north, snow can be found on its northern tip, as well as in the mountainous center of the region. Despite the region's northern location a part of Sinnoh has a tropical climate, and overall the climate varies greatly throughout the region. Much of the western half of the region is rural, while its east is comparatively urban, in a similarity to the continental area shared by Johto and Kanto, respectively. The southern area of Sinnoh is lush and green with big cities and small towns.

Sinnoh is said to be the first region to be created in the Pokémon world, and is home to several locations that have certain mythology or history associated with them, both natural and human influenced sites.

Starter Pokémon

Though it was initially rumored that the Grass/Fire/Water setup that had been the norm for the past three generations would be replaced with a Dark/Psychic/Fighting trio, these rumors were later proven false. At the beginning of the journey, players must choose from the Grass-type Turtwig, the Fire-type Chimchar, and the Water-type Piplup to defend themselves from a wild Starly in Diamond and Pearl, or be given one of the three by Professor Rowan directly in Platinum.

Gym Leaders

Like the other five regions, Sinnoh has its own set of eight Gym Leaders. This set specializes in the same types as Gym Leaders from other regions, though not in the same order. Like always, Badges and TMs are given away by defeated Gym Leaders.

Sinnoh League
Gym Leader
Japanese
Location
Japanese
Type Badge
{{{size}}}
Roark
ヒョウタ Hyouta
Oreburgh City
クロガネシティ
Kurogane City
Rock Coal Badge.png
Coal Badge
{{{size}}}
Gardenia
ナタネ Natane
Eterna City
ハクタイシティ
Hakutai City
Grass Forest Badge.png
Forest Badge
{{{size}}}
Maylene
スモモ Sumomo
Veilstone City
トバリシティ
Tobari City
Fighting Cobble Badge.png
Cobble Badge
{{{size}}}
Crasher Wake
マキシマム仮面 Maximum Mask
Pastoria City
ノモセシティ
Nomose City
Water Fen Badge.png
Fen Badge
{{{size}}}
Fantina
メリッサ Melissa
Hearthome City
ヨスガシティ
Yosuga City
Ghost Relic Badge.png
Relic Badge
{{{size}}}
Byron
トウガン Tougan
Canalave City
ミオシティ
Mio City
Steel Mine Badge.png
Mine Badge
{{{size}}}
Candice
スズナ Suzuna
Snowpoint City
キッサキシティ
Kissaki City
Ice Icicle Badge.png
Icicle Badge
{{{size}}}
Volkner
デンジ Denzi
Sunyshore City
ナギサシティ
Nagisa City
Electric Beacon Badge.png
Beacon Badge

Johto

Johto
Main article: Johto

Much like Generation I's version of Kanto was featured a second time in Generation III, Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver caused Johto to be featured a second time in Generation IV.

Starter Pokémon

Much as Kanto's Generation III starters were the same as in Generation I, Johto's starters have not changed. Professor Elm offers Chikorita, Cyndaquil, or Totodile to the player as protection on an errand to Mr. Pokémon's house on Route 30.

Gym Leaders

As would be expected, Johto's Gym Leaders are the same as before, but many give out different TMs than they gave out in Generation II.

Johto League
Gym Leader
Japanese
Location
Japanese
Type Badge
{{{size}}}
Falkner
ハヤト Hayato
Violet City
キキョウシティ
Kikyō City
Flying Zephyr Badge.png
Zephyr Badge
{{{size}}}
Bugsy
ツクシ Tsukushi
Azalea Town
ヒワダタウン
Hiwada Town
Bug Hive Badge.png
Hive Badge
{{{size}}}
Whitney
アカネ Akane
Goldenrod City
コガネシティ
Kogane City
Normal Plain Badge.png
Plain Badge
{{{size}}}
Morty
マツバ Matsuba
Ecruteak City
エンジュシティ
Enju City
Ghost Fog Badge.png
Fog Badge
{{{size}}}
Chuck
シジマ Shijima
Cianwood City
タンバシティ
Tanba City
Fighting Storm Badge.png
Storm Badge
{{{size}}}
Jasmine
ミカン Mikan
Olivine City
アサギシティ
Asagi City
Steel Mineral Badge.png
Mineral Badge
{{{size}}}
Pryce
ヤナギ Yanagi
Mahogany Town
チョウジタウン
Chōji Town
Ice Glacier Badge.png
Glacier Badge
{{{size}}}
Clair
イブキ Ibuki
Blackthorn City
フスベシティ
Fusube City
Dragon Rising Badge.png
Rising Badge


Kanto

Kanto as seen in HeartGold and SoulSilver
Main article: Kanto

In its fourth appearance, Kanto returns in HeartGold and SoulSilver much in the same way as it did in Generation II (as a post-League area).

Gym Leaders

Kanto's Gym Leaders are the same as in the original Gold and Silver, changing slightly from the group who were there in Generation I and Generation III. All Kanto Gym Leaders give TMs, unlike in Generation II.

Indigo League
Gym Leader
Japanese
Location
Japanese
Type Badge
{{{size}}}
Brock
タケシ Takeshi
Pewter City
ニビシティ
Nibi City
Rock Boulder Badge.png
Boulder Badge
{{{size}}}
Misty
カスミ Kasumi
Cerulean City
ハナダシティ
Hanada City
Water Cascade Badge.png
Cascade Badge
{{{size}}}
Lt. Surge
マチス Matis
Vermilion City
クチバシティ
Kuchiba City
Electric Thunder Badge.png
Thunder Badge
{{{size}}}
Erika
エリカ Erika
Celadon City
タマムシシティ
Tamamushi City
Grass Rainbow Badge.png
Rainbow Badge
{{{size}}}
Janine
アンズ Anzu
Fuchsia City
セキチクシティ
Sekichiku City
Poison Soul Badge.png
Soul Badge
{{{size}}}
Sabrina
ナツメ Natsume
Saffron City
ヤマブキシティ
Yamabuki City
Psychic Marsh Badge.png
Marsh Badge
{{{size}}}
Blaine
カツラ Katsura
Cinnabar Island
グレンタウン
Guren Town
Fire Volcano Badge.png
Volcano Badge
{{{size}}}
Blue
グリーン Green
Viridian City
トキワシティ
Tokiwa City
Various Earth Badge.png
Earth Badge


Other Generation IV games

Pokémon Battle Revolution features a Pokémon Stadium-like arena for battle, allowing Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, HeartGold, and SoulSilver to link to it through wireless communications between the Nintendo DS and Wii, much like previous generations' games would link to Colosseum, XD, Stadium, and Stadium 2. Battle Revolution also features online battles with players around the world via the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection.

My Pokémon Ranch lets players of Pokémon Diamond and Pearl deposit their Pokémon, via wireless communication, to a ranch owned by Hayley, who will also bring Pokémon to the ranch. Players can interact with up to 1,000 of their deposited Pokémon. An update for this game enables support for Platinum, as well as allowing storage for 500 more Pokémon, however, it was not released to players outside Japan, while players of HeartGold and SoulSilver cannot connect with the game at all.

Generation IV also included 3 new Mystery Dungeon games available world wide and 3 exclusively available in Japan. Explorers of; Time, Darkness, and Sky were available world wide. The Mystery Dungeon games exclusive to Japan were Pokémon Mystery Dungeon:; Keep Going! Blazing Adventure Squad!, Let's Go! Stormy Adventure Squad! and Go For It! Light Adventure Squad!

Pokemon Rumble was introduced in Generation IV.

Discussion of Generation IV

The Physical-Special split introduced in Generation IV as well as the introduction of powerful items such as the Choice Scarf, Choice Specs, and Life Orb made competitive battling far more advanced and popular. This was also increased due to the GTS increasing the chance of finding a Pokémon with Pokérus and EV-enhancing items for a specific stat being introduced also made it far easier to EV train a Pokémon, which added another dimension to competitive battling as EV training is no longer as painstaking as it was before. Due to these additions this generation is widely praised by competitive battlers. The GTS also paved the way for the Masuda method through the transaction of foreign Pokémon, and this in addition to the Poké Radar made it far easier to acquire Shiny Pokémon.

After Diamond and Pearl, Platinum continued improving the series, adding a new Battle Frontier, as well as introducing many new additions to the games (such as VS sprites and animated battle sprites for certain important NPCs, such as Gym Leaders and Rival). Platinum is also an important part of the series' continuity, as the storyline of the game is referenced in Pokémon Black and White, showing where Generation V is placed on the timeline. The overall generation introduced many characters, some of whom play notable roles during the following generation. HeartGold and SoulSilver brought older and newer players back to the Johto region with improved graphics and sound and other additions to the storyline and characters.

Sinnoh thematic motif

The theme of this generation is history of the universe, and myths and legends. The three starters' evolutions have references to myths and legends in themselves—for example, Torterra is based on the legend of world turtle, Empoleon has references to the god Poseidon, and Infernape is based on Sun Wukong. This also reflects on its legendary Pokémon, as Arceus is the literal creator of the universe and created the rulers of time, space and anti-matter, who are Dialga, Palkia and Giratina, respectively. All three of them are involved in Sinnoh myths, as are Uxie, Azelf and Mesprit: the embodiments of knowledge, willpower and emotions.

Some standard Pokémon are also connected to myths and legends, such as Drifloon and Drifblim that in folklore are said to take children and people to the Underworld and Spiritomb who is said to be made up of 108 spirits.

Some towns still preserve their history and myths. Celestic Town is said to be present since the beginning of Sinnoh, and has a shrine that dates back to ancient times, as well as a cave painting. Some other examples are the Solaceon Ruins, which contain Unown and is said to be as old as the ruins of Johto; the Snowpoint Temple, which was created long ago to contain Regigigas; Eterna City, which contains a statue of Dialga/Palkia; Floaroma Town, which was said to be a wasteland long ago, but then was transformed into a beautiful landscape by Shaymin; Mt. Coronet; and the Spear Pillar. Canalave City houses the first Pokémon library, which transcribes many of the legends of the region. Sinnoh was meant to establish the origin of the Pokémon universe and be more mysterious and historic than other regions.

Japanese title screens

Pokémon Diamond Pokémon Pearl Pokémon Platinum
Japanese DiamondTitle.png Japanese PearlTitle.png Japanese PlatinumTitle.png
Pokémon HeartGold Pokémon SoulSilver
Japanese HeartGoldTitle.png Japanese SoulSilverTitle.png

Trivia

  • Every player character in all Generation IV games has a Wii in his/her room, referencing its status as the current Nintendo console during the generation. Previously, in Generation III, Brendan and May had Nintendo GameCubes in their rooms, Red and Leaf had an NES, and Red in Generation I had a Super Nintendo. In Generation VI, Calem and Serena had a Wii U in their rooms.
  • Generation IV is the only generation in which two core series game names have the same first initial in English (Pearl and Platinum). However, other languages have had the same initial in their game names, with Spanish Azul and Amarillo for Blue and Yellow, and German Saphir and Smaragd for Sapphire and Emerald.
  • Generation IV is the first generation to include:
    • Level 1 Pokémon legitimately obtainable in the core series.
    • Compatibility with both the generation preceding and following it.
  • Generation IV is the only generation to have all its games released in the spring in North America, and in the fall in Japan.
  • Generation IV is the longest Pokémon generation in Japan, falling only 10 days short of being four years long.
  • Generation IV is tied with Generation III for the largest number of core series games, with five each.
  • Generation IV introduced the largest number of evolutions for Pokémon of previous generations, at 29.
  • Generation IV introduced the largest number of legendary Pokémon, with 13*.
  • Generation IV is the only generation that did not introduce a Water/Rock-type Pokémon.
  • Generation IV is the first generation to have one of its games (Platinum) do a different Gym order from the rest of its core series (Diamond and Pearl).
  • Generation IV features the largest number of playable core series regions, with three.


Generation I: Red & GreenBlue (JP)Red & BlueYellow
Generation II: Gold & SilverCrystal
Generation III: Ruby & SapphireFireRed & LeafGreenEmerald
Generation IV: Diamond & PearlPlatinumHeartGold & SoulSilver
Generation V: Black & WhiteBlack 2 & White 2
Generation VI: X & YOmega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire
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