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| Pokémon Crystal Version|
Pokémon Crystal Version's boxart, depicting Suicune.
|| Release dates
|| December 14, 2000
| North America:
|| July 29, 2001
|| September 30, 2001
|| November 2, 2001
| South Korea:
| Japanese boxart
Boxart of Pocket Monsters Crystal Version.
Pokémon Crystal Version (Japanese: ポケットモンスタークリスタルバージョン Pocket Monsters: Crystal Version) is the third and final Generation II core series game for Game Boy Color. It was released as a sister game to Pokémon Gold and Silver, which were released one year before. It was released in Japan on December 14, 2000, in North America on July 29, 2001, and in Europe on November 2, 2001.
It featured various fixes and some new additions, most notably the introduction of the option to play as a girl. It takes place in the region of Johto like Gold and Silver, with access to Kanto granted later in the game, with the player's starting town being New Bark Town.
The Japanese version had far more new features, all related to a mobile phone-related linking technology usable through the Pokémon Mobile System GB when connecting a Mobile Adapter GB to a Game Boy Color or Game Boy Advance (original or SP).
The player is called to Professor Elm's lab to run an errand. He provides the player with one of three Pokémon: Chikorita, Cyndaquil, or Totodile to help him/her get to Mr. Pokémon's house. The player (known by default as Gold or Kris, depending on the gender) meets Kanto's own Professor Oak during the errand for Elm. Oak, convinced that the player has started his/her own Pokémon journey, gives him/her a Pokédex. On the way back, the player is attacked by a spiteful and mysterious Pokémon Trainer. Upon his/her return to New Bark Town, the player is informed that someone has broken into Professor Elm's lab and has stolen a Pokémon, the same Pokémon that the Trainer from earlier battled with (the Pokémon that the player's starter is weak against); even more so, that very same Trainer fits the description of the Pokémon thief. This Trainer will become the player's rival for the course of the game, having several conflicts with the player as to what it means to be the world's greatest Pokémon Trainer.
Team Rocket has returned with a new attitude, since the disappearance of their leader Giovanni, and once again tries to take over the world, starting with the Johto region. They begin with petty things (such as cutting off the tails of Slowpoke to sell as food for a high price) before becoming more devious, such as a plan to use radio frequencies to artificially induce evolution in some Pokémon at the Lake of Rage near Mahogany town. When the player defeats or captures the Red Gyarados rampaging in the lake, Lance will arrive and congratulate the player for his/her battling and requests that the player help him find the source of the radio signals. When the player returns to Mahogany town and enters the Souvenir Shop, he/she will find Lance and his Dragonite threatening the man in the shop. A secret door will open to the Rocket base, which was revealed by a Rocket Grunt to be an old ninja hideout. After the player defeats the Rocket Executive found in the hideout, Lance asks the player to help him knock out the Electrode powering the machine producing the radio waves.
After completing this task, Lance thanks the player and gives him/her the HM Whirlpool. After the player defeats Pryce - the leader of Mahogany Gym - Professor Elm will call the player and tell him/her about unusual broadcasts from the Radio Tower in Goldenrod City. When the player reaches Goldenrod City, it is revealed that Team Rocket has taken over the Radio Tower, their intent being to try to contact their missing leader, Giovanni, and persuade him to return to Team Rocket. Also, the Director of the Goldenrod station has been kidnapped and replaced by an impostor. After the player defeats the impostor, he will tell him/her the location of the real Director. When the player frees the real Director, he will give the player the Card Key, which opens the door on 3F of the Radio Tower and leads to the Rocket Executive currently in charge of the group. The player defeats the executive and Team Rocket officially disbands for a second time. The Director rewards the player with a Clear Bell.
Throughout the adventure, the player will also come across Suicune, a legendary Pokémon that traverses Johto after the player awakens the three legendary beasts from their sleep at the Burned Tower. Unlike Raikou and Entei, Suicune takes notice of the player; similarly, Eusine shows interest in Suicune, having sought it for ten years and finally taking a glimpse at it thanks to the player. As Eusine challenges the player to a battle near Cianwood City, it becomes clear that Eusine wants to earn Suicune's respect so that he can find out what it is that it looks after. However, it is when the player is entrusted with the Clear Bell that the Wise Trio allow them to enter the Tin Tower, where Suicune has arrived to put them to the test. Later in the story, after the player has proven their ability to touch the souls of Pokémon by catching all three of the legendary beasts, Ho-Oh returns to the Tin Tower after 150 years of testing humans from afar.
As in all previous games, the main goal of the player is to defeat all the Gym Leaders of Johto, win all eight Badges, and take on the Elite Four and the current Pokémon League Champion. Afterward, the player will be able to travel to the region of Kanto and take on the Kanto Gym Leaders for their Badges. After winning all eight badges, Professor Oak will give the player permission to go to Mt. Silver and face the protagonist from Generation I, Red.
|| Spoilers end here.
The latest in the Gold & Silver series!
Travel back to the world of Johto as the Gold & Silver series continues with brand new features! Whether you're reading the fresh descriptions in your Pokédex, using the unique sort function to organize your Pokémon in new ways, watching the all-new battle animations, or discovering another way to capture Suicune, you'll need all of your Poké-skills to master Pokémon Crystal on your Game Boy Color!
- Unlock the mysteries of the Unown! All-new puzzles and rewards await you in the Ruins of Alph!
- Fight through the Battle Tower, a challenging tournament featuring Johto's best trainers!
- For the first time, play as a male or female trainer!
- Trade with Gold, Silver, Red, Blue, and Yellow versions to catch 'em all!
- Compatible with Pokémon Stadium 2 for the Nintendo 64!
Changes from Pokémon Gold and Silver
- A female player character, Kris, was introduced, marking the first time players could choose the gender of their character.
- The choice is purely aesthetic and does not affect gameplay.
- Kris will disguise herself as Ethan before using any of the multiplayer features, so the player's gender is not apparent in multiplayer.
- The Ice Path was redesigned with an ice-like appearance. Some of its puzzles were also changed.
- The Burned Tower was redesigned on the exterior and interior. The outside was altered to look more liked a burned building rather than a short one (see the Burned Tower page for more information).
- Lance's room at the Indigo Plateau was redesigned to have a draconic appearance, with the statues in the room being replaced with Dratini statues.
- Raikou, Entei, and Suicune have their own special battle music when the player encounters them in the wild, making Crystal the first game to sport special legendary Pokémon battle music.
- The Dragon's Den was subtly altered; now the Dragon Shrine is open, and some Headbutt trees were added to the back of the Shrine.
- The Goldenrod Department Store had a roof area added.
Pokémon sprites are now animated.
- More work was done on Pokémon sprites:
- Pokémon sprites now play a short animation upon entering the fight and a longer one when the Pokémon's profile is viewed, a feature that would not be seen again until Pokémon Emerald. In this game, only the front sprites are animated.
- While most of the Pokémon retain their sprites from either Gold or Silver, certain Pokémon, such as Houndoom and Croconaw, were given new ones. This includes some Pokémon who had identical sprites in both original versions, like Sneasel and Suicune. The W Unown was redesigned, its new design was used in all future games.
- A few Pokémon, such as Spinarak, Magnemite and Sneasel, were recolored to more closely match their official artwork.
- Several of the Pokémon that were redrawn gained new back sprites.
- The user interface used during link cable trades was redesigned. Gold and Silver used a simple black on white trading interface that was identical to the one used in the Generation I games, mainly to retain compatibility with older Game Boy systems. In Crystal, the menus were revamped with full color on a black background, a design which better suits the capabilities of the Game Boy Color.
- A fountain was added to the center of the pond in the National Park.
- The inside of Mt. Mortar was changed.
- Certain Trainers have their dialogue changed.
- Extra grass was added to the route west of Violet City, and in this grass, Growlithe can be caught, allowing players to acquire a Fire-type Pokémon much earlier than in other versions (assuming they did not choose Cyndaquil), and making a large difference in the availability of Fire-types for areas like the Azalea Gym and the Sprout Tower, where Fire-types are super-effective.
- Just like in Pokémon Yellow Version, changes were made to available wild Pokémon:
- On one hand, several Pokémon that were exclusive to Gold or Silver are available in the wild, like Gligar and Skarmory. On the other hand, some species that were available in both Gold and Silver are a no-show this time around, like the Mareep family.
- Sneasel appears in the Ice Path, whereas in Gold and Silver, it did not appear until reaching Mt. Silver.
- Magmar no longer appears in the Burned Tower, instead appearing exclusively in Mt. Silver.
- Some of the wild Pokémon that appear in Kanto were altered.
- Some Trainers were repositioned on the map.
- Several new trainers were added. Some one of them can only be battled when certain conditions are met (example: Pokéfan Jaime on Route 39 who can only be battled at night) . Some of them won't approach the player themselves, and, when spoken to, won't play the "encounter" music before engaging in battle.
- Ho-Oh cannot be caught until Raikou, Entei, and Suicune are all caught.
- Changes were made to the Ruins of Alph. This included more common Unown, as well as a new subplot-– completing enough puzzles allows the player to read a secret message left behind by the Unown. It suggests that the Unown were left behind by the ancient civilization that constructed the Ruins of Alph, and that the statues that line the interior were made by those people.
- Previously, Trainers who called on the cell phone all said the same phrase, with only the names of the Pokémon they reference changing. Trainers are now given distinct personalities (one talks about shopping, another about grooming), and call for reasons other than battling, such as giving the player items, or informing them of a rare Pokémon appearing (Wade gives the player Berries, Alan gives them a Fire Stone, etc.).
- The Buena's Password radio show was added, which players can listen to on their Pokégear and receive points in order to redeem prizes.
- The new rooftop area of the Goldenrod Department Store has occasional sales, which the player is informed about if Camper Todd's number is registered in the Pokégear.
- The menu to reset the clock in non-Japanese and non-Korean versions of Gold and Silver remains, although it is now more difficult to access.
- On the title screen, the player must first hold the ↓, Select, and B buttons.
- While holding Select, they must release ↓ and B.
- Still holding Select, they must now hold ← and ↑.
- Finally, the player must release Select.
- Kurt can now make multiple Balls from same colored Apricorns simultaneously.
- The Day-Care Man now gives the player an Odd Egg.
- Some Pokémon have changed level-up movesets, however, all but one of them have only one change.
- Suicune, instead of being a side legendary Pokémon, has a prominent role in the game's storyline. Awakening the Lenedary Beasts is now a prerequisite for challenging Morty. After this, the player will constantly find Suicune in various locations throughout Johto. After receiving a Clear Bell (where in Gold and Silver, the Rainbow or Silver Wing would be obtained instead), the player will have a chance to battle and capture it in the Tin Tower, and it will not run away.
- A new character, Eusine, is added to the game. He is searching for Suicune as well, and will battle the player in Cianwood City to earn its respect.
- The chain of events to obtain the Rising Badge is altered. Where previously, it involved a trip to the Dragon's Den to retrieve the Dragon Fang, it now involves entering the Dragon Shrine within the Den. There, Clair's grandfather and leader of the dragon-user clan quizzes the player on their style of battling. Clair arrives and still refuses to hand over her Badge after the player passes. In response, her grandfather threatens to tell her cousin, Lance, of whom Clair is terrified. If all the questions are answered correctly, the player will receive a Dratini that knows ExtremeSpeed upon returning and speaking with Clair's grandfather.
Pokémon not found in Crystal
These Pokémon must be traded from the other games of Generation I and II, as they cannot be found in Pokémon Crystal.
The localized releases of Crystal, while improving on the mechanics of Pokémon Gold and Silver, did not reprise a number of newer features that the Japanese version had received:
- In the Japanese version, Celebi may be caught at Ilex Forest after completing a short side-mission. A special Pokémon Mobile System GB event allowed players to obtain the GS Ball. This item, given by a nurse at the Pokémon Communication Center in Goldenrod City, may be taken to Kurt in Azalea Town to investigate. After a day passes, Kurt gives back the GS Ball to the player and asks him/her to check the restless Ilex Forest. Taking the GS Ball to the shrine at Ilex Forest summons a level 30 Celebi to battle. Despite the fact that the GS Ball was unavailable overseas without cheating or modification of the saved game, the event was translated and adapted to the regular Pokémon Center in Goldenrod City from Gold and Silver, indicating that it was intended for the localizations to include the event, but was later scrapped.
- Goldenrod City's Pokémon Center was replaced by a much larger building, the aforementioned Pokémon Communication Center. Other than reverting the change from the Japanese Crystal back to a regular Pokémon Center in the localizations, the GS Ball event was also adapted to it but left unused, as mentioned above.
- Players could link to trade or battle through the use of the Mobile Adapter GB.
- Players could leave a Pokémon and a request the Pokémon species that it be traded for at the Pokémon Communication Center's Trade Corner. A player could also view Pokémon up for trade from other players, and trade with them. This feature was later used for the Global Trade Station in Generations IV, V and VI.
- The News Machine at the Pokémon Communication Center updated over the Pokémon Mobile System GB. Pokémon News was compiled from the saved game data of players across Japan, allowing players to read about other players' adventures.
- The Day-Care Man at the Pokémon Day Care on Route 34 gave an Egg Ticket which, when taken to the Trade Corner at the Pokémon Communication Center, could be traded for an Odd Egg which carried a rare Shiny Baby Pokémon knowing Dizzy Punch. In the localizations, the Day-Care Man instead gives away the Odd Egg himself.
While Gold and Silver introduced the majority of Generation II's contributions to the game mechanics, Crystal also featured several additions to the franchise that continue into the future. First, Crystal introduced the option to play as a female character. The game also featured the first Move Tutor of the series, as well as the first Battle Tower. This was the first game to include animated sprites for Pokémon, though this only applied to front sprites (back sprites remained still as they did in previous games). This feature was absent in later games until it was reintroduced in Pokémon Emerald, after which it became standard. Back sprites did not become fully animated until Pokémon Platinum, which also added animations for important Trainers such as Gym Leaders. In Pokémon Black and White, sprites remain animated throughout the battle; before these games, Pokémon Crystal was the only game that had more than two frames per animation.
Even though Pokémon Gold and Silver were the first games to use legendary Pokémon (specifically Ho-Oh and Lugia) as version mascots, it was Crystal that incorporated them into the plot for the first time. The story additions involving the legendary beasts (most prominently Suicune), Ho-Oh and Unown were unprecedented, since up until then no Pokémon had been referenced in the dialogue on more than one occasion. This was also evident in the fact that the legendary beasts received a unique battle theme, and in that the plot climax was no longer limited to thwarting Team Rocket, instead culminating in the battle against Suicune at Tin Tower. Later generations focus on their version mascots as part of the plot involving the villainous team of the respective region (with the only exception being the remade versions; Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen follow Pokémon Red and Green's footsteps, and Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver are similar to Crystal in keeping the two stories separated).
The Japanese version of Crystal notably introduced the ability to link to a wireless connection and interact with other characters (via cell phone). The Game Boy Advance Wireless Adapter also enabled this ability in Generation III (albeit to a far lesser extent, due to the Wireless Adapter's limited range), and the Wi-Fi capabilities of the Nintendo DS completely optimized the concept in Generation IV games. The GS Ball event was the first time where an event Pokémon (in this case Celebi) could be caught in-game as opposed to being directly downloaded to the cartridge; this went on to be the case for several such Pokémon in subsequent generations.
Pokémon Crystal received good reviews, although they were not quite as positive as those of Pokémon Gold and Silver. Like Pokémon Yellow before it, and subsequently Pokémon Emerald, it was criticized for being too similar to its sister games, with IGN commenting, "there's not much in this edition that makes it a 'must buy' for folks who already own a copy or two of the previous editions". IGN still gave the game an "Outstanding" rating of 9/10. The game received an average score of near 80% from GameRankings, about 10% lower than Pokémon Gold and Silver.
Copies of Pokémon Gold and Silver typically lose the ability to save after a period of about seven years, due to the internal battery running dry (this is due to the constantly-running clock). However, the battery is replaceable with another one of the same kind, a CR2025 lithium cell, although replacing it will reset the game's data. The problem appears less often with Pokémon Crystal.
One sign that the battery will soon lose the ability to save is that the game will not keep track of the time correctly while the game is not being played.
- Main article: Staff of Pokémon Crystal
- Main article: Pokémon HeartGold & Pokémon SoulSilver: Super Music Collection
Most of the game's music comes from Pokémon Gold and Silver, which have not had any sort of official soundtrack release of the games' original tracks. The closest approximation to such a release is Disc 3 of Pokémon HeartGold & Pokémon SoulSilver: Super Music Collection, which is based on the GB Sounds item and the Pokémon Past Archive radio program of HeartGold and SoulSilver that is meant to emulate the style of chiptunes. However, not all of the old-style music is available on the CD. Additionally, Discs 1 and 2 of the aforementioned soundtrack contain remixes of the music originating from Pokémon Gold and Silver (and Crystal). Moreover, several tracks that are exclusive to Japanese Crystal have not received official releases.
- Main article: Pokémon Crystal beta
- People buying a Game Boy Colorwhere? during the release of this game were given the option of buying a Game Boy Advance that came with Pokémon Crystal in the package.
- During battles, Japanese midline horizontal ellipses ("⋯") are used in the English versions instead of regular ellipses ("…") due to an oversight.
- Why the Pokémon Mobile System GB features were not made available outside of Japan has never been officially revealed; Nintendo says that they had FCC issuessource? but it is more likely a result of children with cell phones being not nearly as common outside of Japan in 2001 and there being a plethora of different styles of phones in use overseas. While the Pokémon Mobile System GB did not make the cut, the maps and text for the functionality can still be found in the localizations, indicating that it was initially intended for an international release (and the features were still shown in the demo of the game in North Americasource?).
- The game's opening shows several Unown communicating with Suicune over radio waves, alerting it to the Ruins of Alph. Oddly, this is not part of the game's story, with the Ruins of Alph sidequest being independent of the plot involving Suicune. That said, the Unown are referenced by the Wise Trio as having a cooperative bond with Suicune.
- The Japanese Super Game Boy border of Pokémon Gold (labeled Pocket Monsters Gold Version) but not of Pokémon Silver is unused in all releases of Pokémon Crystal.
- This is the last localized core series game to use the slogan Gotta catch 'em all!.
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