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Generation II

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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 II
Pokémon Crystal Version
Title screen of Pokémon Crystal Version
Debut En October 15, 2000
Jp November 21, 1999
Pokémon 251 (100 new)
Main games Gold, Silver, and Crystal
Region introduced Johto
Battle arena games Stadium 2
End En March 19, 2003 (885 days)
Jp November 21, 2002 (1096 days)

The second generation of Pokémon games, sometimes called the metal generation, or the metallic generation by older players due to the names of the paired versions, is a sequel to the Generation I games Red and Green, Blue, Red and Blue, Yellow.

Beginning with Pokémon Gold and Pokémon Silver and later joined by Pokémon Crystal, Generation II began the Pokémon series's expansion-focused nature, introducing to the world 100 new Pokémon which did not exist and are unable to be obtained in the Generation I games and the new region of Johto. Many of these Pokémon expand the evolution families of older Pokémon, while a majority of them are brand-new evolutionary families.

The initial hint that Generation II was on its way came in early 1997, with the release of the anime's first episode. A Pokémon appears to Ash Ketchum on the first day of his journey, shortly after he and Pikachu become friends, that cannot be identified by the Pokédex. This magnificent golden bird, later revealed to be the legendary mascot of Gold Version, Ho-Oh, was the first Pokémon from a future generation to debut in the anime. The games, initially named directly as "Pocket Monsters 2", were set for release in late 1997, but were pushed back to 1999 with the intention to redevelop the games to work with the Game Boy Color better.

Details in the games indicate that the storyline of the Generation II games occurs three years after the one in Generation I and Generation III, while the storyline of the Sinnoh-based Generation IV games indicate that they occur similarly contemporaneously to Generation II as Generation I does to Generation III.

Advances in gameplay

In addition to retaining the system from Generation I in almost every aspect, several key innovations were made to the series, most of which have been retained in every generation since.

Major additions

Major alterations from Generation I

  • A change in the types of four moves (Gust, Sand-Attack, Karate Chop, and Bite). All formerly Normal-type, they are now Flying, Ground, Fighting, and Dark, respectively.
  • The addition of Steel as a secondary type for Magnemite and Magneton.
  • An improved stat system, with the former Special stat being split into Special Attack and Special Defense.
  • The Bag is no longer one 20-item container, but has four separate sections for different items: Normal items, Poké Balls, TMs and HMs, and key items.
  • A key item can be set to and then subsequently accessed with the select button, for convenience on the field.
  • Opponent Pokémon Trainers are given individual names.
  • Exp. All is upgraded into the Exp. Share and is made a held item.
    • The definition of "upgrade" and not "replacement" in this situation is due to the items having the same name in the Japanese versions, suggesting an improvement on the item's mechanism and not necessarily a complete and independent substitute.
  • In the previous generation, a Pokémon could gain enough experience to jump straight from one level to another, thus missing out on any moves it could have learned in the levels between. From this generation onwards, if a Pokémon is currently in the battle, it level ups more than once if it gains enough experience to do so, meaning it does not miss any moves it could learn by level up. While other Pokémon still jump straight from one level to another, they do not miss any moves.
  • Town Map is replaced with an electronic device, the Pokégear, which also has cellphone and radio capabilities, alongside map functions.
  • The way the game handles color on the world map has been improved. Overworld sprites such as the surfing Pikachu no longer change their palettes when moving between areas.
  • The Type chart has changed somewhat from Generation I:
Attacking type Defending type Old effectiveness New effectiveness
 Bug   Poison  Super effective Not very effective
 Poison   Bug  Super effective Normal effectiveness
 Ghost   Psychic  Not effective Super effective
 Ice   Fire  Normal effectiveness Not very effective

Further additions in Pokémon Crystal

Regions

Johto

Johto
Main article: Johto

Generation II introduced a new region to the Pokémon universe, Johto, located directly west of the Kanto region featured in Generation I. Johto's culture is notably more old-fashioned than Kanto's, especially in the more rural areas, which are more plentiful than in Kanto. Like Kanto, it has a sea to the south and mountains to the north.

Starter Pokémon

The starter Pokémon introduced in Generation II follow the same Grass-Fire-Water alignment as those of Kanto. Despite this, they are not the same trio as in Generation I. Instead, Professor Elm offers Chikorita, Cyndaquil, or Totodile to the player as protection on an errand to Mr. Pokémon's house on Route 30.

Unlike other generations, where the first Gym is strong against the Fire-type and weak to Grass and Water, in this generation, the first Gym is strong against Grass, while Fire and Water both have an opening. Also, Pokémon available can cover for the weaknesses of the starter types very early on in the game, unlike in Generation I.

Gym Leaders

Johto's Gym Leaders specialize in types different from Kanto's Gym Leaders, with eight of the nine types not covered by Kanto being the specialty types of these Gyms. Like Kanto, these Gym Leaders will give out Badges and TMs on their defeat.

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
Main article: Kanto

Unlike later games in the series, the Generation II games offer the player the chance, once Johto's Gyms are conquered and the Elite Four is defeated, to return to the Kanto region where the Generation I games are set. Here, players will find that many things have changed over the past three years.

Gym Leaders

Unlike in Generation I, the Gym Leaders of Generation II Kanto will for the most part not give away TMs; only Janine and Erika do this.

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
グレンじま
Guren Island
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


Discussion of Generation II

Pokémon Gold and Silver were among the most-hyped games in the Pokémon franchise, with the innovations introduced in them becoming staples of the series. The later-released Pokémon Crystal began the series' focus on legendary Pokémon of the regions in which the games take place, first bringing them into the plot of the game. Due to these improvements, Generation II is highly acclaimed among long-time fans. Unlike future games, Generation II stood as an extension and a sequel of Generation I, and has been criticized by some for this.

Like Generation I's games, the popularity of the Generation II games proved great enough that remakes were made during Generation IV as sequels to Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen. Another reason why remakes were made was the fact that the original versions are incompatible with Generation III and onward.

Johto thematic motif

The second generation of Pokémon games were more directed towards mythology and tradition. The three starters were all "pure" element types, fitting the classic Water > Grass > Fire cycle all starters adhere to. Unlike two of the fully-evolved starter Pokémon in Generation I, and at least one of every starter trio since, the fully-evolved Johto starters maintain their single types.

This was the first installment that put emphasis on legendary Pokémon being actual legends in-game, in contrast to Mewtwo and the legendary birds of Generation I. Ecruteak City fleshed out the legends of Ho-Oh and the three beasts, their relationship with one another, and the story behind their departure (the Burned Tower). Suicune was, unlike Raikou and Entei, unavoidable in Crystal Version if the player wanted to beat the game; the remakes HeartGold and SoulSilver give the same treatment to Ho-Oh and Lugia, respectively. Lugia was also glimpsed by an elderly man in Ecruteak City, and others, who stated it looked like a dragon in the sky. Even the uncatchable Celebi was mentioned as the "Forest's Protector" at the shrine in Ilex Forest.

The Kimono Girls upheld ancient tradition in both battling Pokémon and dancing. The buildings in both Ecruteak City and Violet City have an older structure to them as well. The player must navigate Johto and Kanto, beating the new Elite Four, sixteen Gym Leaders and the original Pokémon Champion Red. This is after defeating the newly revitalized Team Rocket, searching for the fallen Giovanni. The second generation expanded upon trading through use of held items evolution through the addition of friendship, and breeding to attain pre-evolution or baby Pokémon. Kurt offered a more traditional means of creating Poké Balls via Apricorns which proved variably superior to manufactured Poké Balls. Johto is physically connected to Kanto and these games added depth to both regions.

Japanese title screens

Pokémon Gold Pokémon Silver Pokémon Crystal
Japanese GoldTitle.png Japanese SilverTitle.png Japanese CrystalTitle.png

Trivia

  • Generation II is the smallest generation so far with only seven games and three core series games.
  • Generation II is the only generation where:
    • The starters are initially holding an item.
    • The starters remain single-type Pokémon throughout their evolutions. They are also the only trio whose evolutions do not share any weaknesses with each other.
    • The total number of moves are equal to the total number of Pokémon at the time.
    • Each Pokémon has a different sprite in the original pair of games (except for Unown and the Johto legendary trio).
    • New Fossil Pokémon were not introduced, nor can any Fossils be found or revived (though an Aerodactyl can be obtained through an in-game trade).
    • A Dragon-type pseudo-legendary was not introduced.
    • A two-stage, cat-like evolutionary line was not introduced.
  • In terms of release dates, Generation II is the shortest generation in Japan, with exactly three years between the release of Gold and Silver and Ruby and Sapphire.
  • Generation II leaves the least extra space for Pokémon in the Storage System if one of every species is caught. Only 280 Pokémon may be obtained at once; there are 251 different Pokémon species available in this generation.
  • Generation II features the first main series game, Crystal, whose Japanese title is in katakana only and that uses an English word, rather than using the Japanese counterpart word in kanji. No game since has been named in kanji.
  • Unlike other Generations, should player use a cheat in Generation II game to get into tall grass without a Pokémon, the fight will instantly end (and be treated as victory in case of Trainers), instead of sending a glitch Pokémon.


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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