From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
A Multi Battle (Japanese: マルチバトル Multi Battle), referred to as a Tag Battle (Japanese: タッグバトル Tag Battle) in the anime, is a type of Double Battle in which each of the four Pokémon is controlled by a separate Pokémon Trainer.
Starting with Generation III, Multi Battles occur when the player has teamed up with another Trainer. If the player has teamed up with another Trainer as part of the storyline, their Pokémon total as well as that of their opponents may exceed the limit of six Pokémon per team imposed by party restrictions for other types of Pokémon battle.
In the games
Multi Battle mode
A Multi Battle in Generation IV
In Generation III, up to four players can battle with each other in a Multi Battle via Game Link Cable by choosing the "Multi Battle" mode in the Pokémon Cable Club Colosseum. Players decide which side to battle. This is the only way to have a Multi Battle in Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire and Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen
In Generation IV, the Pokémon Cable Club Colosseum was renamed to the Pokémon Communication Club Colosseum, but Multi Battles can still be conducted by selecting "Multi Battle".
In Generation V, Multi Battles can be conducted through the IR section of the C-Gear, and you can select an opponent and pair with somebody through the IR function.
In Generation VI, the player accesses Multi Battles with the Player Search System's Battle option. After selecting a connection type, the player must then change the number of players to four, and select three other players on the touch screen.
In Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!, players can call on the player character of the opposite gender, referred to in-game as a Support Trainer, to accompany them at any time by turning on a Joycon or Poké Ball Plus, giving it to another player, and shaking it. The second player will battle alongside the main character in Trainer Battles, taking control of the second Pokémon in the party. The second player shares the same hair color, eye color, and skin tone of the host character, and wears a matching set of clothing.
Pokémon Center Receptionist
- "Multi Battle is for four Trainers with one or more Pokémon each."
- "Each Trainer can have one Pokémon in battle at a time."
Since Pokémon Emerald, Multi Battles have been possible at various points throughout the games.
- In Pokémon Emerald, at the Mossdeep Space Center the player battles Maxie and Tabitha of Team Magma alongside Steven.
- This is the only battle when a partner Trainer receives experience points from defeating a Pokémon. It is also the only Multi Battle in which the player can use items on the partner Trainer's Pokémon or knock out the partner Trainer's Pokémon to get experience points.
A Multi Battle in Generation V
A Multi Battle in Generation VI
Since Pokémon Emerald, Multi Battles have been possible in battle areas.
- In Emerald, in the Battle Tower during the Multi Battle mode the player can team up with either an NPC (including the apprentice) or a friend via Game Link Cable or Game Boy Advance Wireless Adapter
- In Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, HeartGold, and SoulSilver, in the Battle Tower during the Multi Battle mode the player can team up with either another player via DS Wireless Communication or with one of the stat Trainers (Cheryl, Mira, Riley, Marley, and Buck). In Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum, these partner Trainers will only appear after the player finishes exploring with them in their areas.
- In Pokémon Black and White, in the Battle Subway on the Multi Train the player can team up with either another player via DS Wireless Communication or with Hilbert/Hilda.
- In Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, in the Battle Subway on the Multi Train the player can team up with either another player via DS Wireless Communication or with Nate/Rosa.
- In Pokémon X and Y, in the Battle Maison during the Multi Battle mode the player can team up with either another player via 3DS Wireless Communication, an NPC avatar of another player on the player's Friend List, or with Tierno, Trevor, or Shauna.
- In Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, in the Battle Maison during the Multi Battle mode the player can team up with either another player via 3DS Wireless Communication, Brendan/May, Wally, Steven, or MaxieOR/ArchieAS.
- In Pokémon Sun and Moon, in the Battle Tree during the Multi Battle mode the player can team up with either another player via 3DS Wireless Communication or a special Trainer previously encountered and defeated at the facility.
- In Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, in the Battle Tree during the Multi Battle mode the player can team up with either another player via 3DS Wireless Communication or a special Trainer previously encountered and defeated at the facility. They can also pair with Lillie after completing Episode RR.
In the anime
ready for a Tag Battle
While Ash has been involved in many "illegal" Tag Battles conducted by Team Rocket long before the concept was introduced to the games, his first official Tag Battle was in The Bicker the Better, when he teamed up with May to battle against Oscar and Andi. At first, Ash had gotten into an argument with May but ended up making up with her and becoming in sync with her during battle.
Hearthome City has its own special tournament known as the Hearthome City Tag Battle Competition, which took place from Tag! We're It...! to Smells Like Team Spirit!. Tag teams are chosen randomly, with each Trainer receiving a card with a number on it and partnering with the Trainer whose number is paired with their number. The tournament was entered by Ash, Dawn, and Brock, who were respectively paired with Paul, Conway, and Holly. Ash and Paul managed to win the tournament despite working very poorly together.
Ash and Dawn have teamed up on numerous occasions over the course of the Diamond & Pearl series. Their first Tag Battle together took place in The Champ Twins! when they faced off against Ryan and Bryan. They initially had trouble working in sync, but after both of them acknowledged their flaws, their teamwork improved and they managed to defeat the twin brothers in a rematch.
In Bagged Then Tagged!, Ash and Dawn had a Tag Battle against Lyra and Khoury inside the Lilypad Colosseum. They managed to defeat the Johto Trainers despite the unexpected Evolution of Khoury's Totodile. While visiting Emeragrove Town in Once There Were Greenfields, Ash and Dawn paired up to battle James and Gardenia. Using their Aipom and Pachirisu against James's Cacnea and Gardenia's Turtwig, they won the match.
Ash and Brock have also been shown to work well together as a team. In A Full Course Tag Battle!, the two went up against the owners of the Seven Stars Restaurant, Roman and Kylie. Their cooperation proved successful and they managed to win the battle. In the same episode, May and Dawn teamed up and were also victorious in their Tag Battle. In Hot Springing a Leak!, Dawn and her childhood friend Leona went up against Ash and Brock. Their battle ended in a draw.
In Lost at the Stamp Rally!, Ash and Cilan fought in a Tag Battle against Ingo and Emmet, which Ash and Cilan lost despite fighting excellently. In Evolution Exchange Excitement!, Ash and Cilan battled and won against Bianca and Professor Juniper. Ash and Cilan also fought together in a Tag Battle against two brothers named Soren and Rocko in A Surface to Air Tag Battle Team! and managed to win here as well. In New Places... Familiar Faces!, Ash and Nanette battled against Iris and Cilan, though the battle was interrupted by Team Rocket in their attempt to capture Pikachu.
In Tag Team Battle Inspiration!, Ash and Tierno partnered up against Serena and Shauna, but the battle was called off.
In Party Dancecapades!, Monsieur Pierre prepared a surprise Tag Battle for the Performers attending his dance party. Entrants were given a card upon registration, and four of these cards had a special mark so the people who received them would take part in a Tag Battle. The special cards ended up with Ash, Serena, Miette, and James and they faced off near the end of the party, with the team of Ash and Serena emerging victorious.
In When Regions Collide!, Lana and Mallow had a Multi Battle against Misty, while Sophocles and Lillie had a Multi Battle against Brock. However, both of these battles were called off.
In The Young Flame Strikes Back!, Kiawe had a Multi Battle against Viren and his henchmen, but he ended up losing the battle.
Tag Battles have been featured in a few Pokémon movies as well. In Destiny Deoxys, Ash visited the LaRousse City Battle Tower where he battled alongside Tory against Sid and Rafe. Due to Tory's fear of Pokémon and lack of battling experience, he and Ash ended up losing the match. In Arceus and the Jewel of Life, Ash and Dawn defeated Kiko and Kato using their Pikachu and Piplup against a Beautifly and Heracross.
In the manga
In the Pokémon Adventures manga
Although multiple Trainers battling a single opponent (such as Sabrina vs. Red, Blue, and Green or Bill and Lt. Surge vs. Bruno) were common prior to Generation III, actual Tag Battles were uncommon. The first true Tag Battle occurs when Gold and Crystal fought against Sham and Carl's two Pokémon together.
Much later, as with the then recently released Pokémon Emerald which fully introduced this feature, the two protagonists of the Ruby & Sapphire chapter, named appropriately after the two games, would fight together against Archie and Maxie in both the Seafloor Cavern and after Groudon and Kyogre's return to their slumber. Silver and Yellow also fought against two opponents, but as Yellow didn't begin to attack until after the former was losing, it is dubious as to whether it can be called a true Tag Battle.
Several Tag Battles also occur during the Diamond & Pearl chapter, including those of two pairs fighting many opponents.
- When battling alongside Steven in Emerald, his Pokémon are shown to gain experience after the defeat of an opponent Pokémon. This does not happen to a partner's Pokémon in the Multi Battles of Generation IV.
- Having the player's party be defeated in the Multi Battle with Steven will cause the player to white out. This was also changed in Generation IV, where a white out will not occur until both the player's and the partner's Pokémon are all knocked out.
- The Multi Battle against Mars and Jupiter in Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum as well as the battle against Flint and Volkner in Pokémon Platinum have the potential to be twelve-on-six fights, due to Barry's full party.
In other languages