Counter (Pinball)

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The Counter (Japanese: カウント・ライト Count Light) is a game mechanic in Pokémon Pinball and Pokémon Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire.


The Catch! Counter (Japanese: ゲット・カウント・ライト Get Count Light) is mentioned in the manuals of both Pinball and Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire. The Catch! Counter uses the word "CATCH!" in the Catch 'em Mode, as described below.


The Counter is located below the Pokémon Panel, at the bottom of all playing fields.

Catching Pokémon

In the Catch 'em Mode, the Counter displays the word "CATCH!", while the Pokémon to be caught is displayed in the Pokémon Panel. Languages other than English use equivalent words, such as Japanese "GET" and French "GAGNE!".

At the start of this mode, the Counter is empty and the Pokémon is seen as just a black silhouette. To display both the whole "CATCH!" word and the Pokémon to be caught, the player is required to hit the Bumpers three times (Voltorb in the Red Field, Shellder in the Blue Field, Chinchou or Lotad in the Ruby Field, or Shroomish in the Sapphire Field).

Whenever the player hits a Bumper, one of three pieces of the word "CATCH!" appears (in this order: "CA", "TC", "H!"), and some square pieces of the Pokémon are revealed as well. Other languages have the word divided in three pieces in similar ways. For instance, the German version in the first game is "SCHMAPPMODUS", divided into "SCHM", "APPM", "ODUS".

Evolving Pokémon

In the Evolution Mode, the Counter displays the number of Evolution Items acquired by the player. The Evolution Items are three instances of the same object found somewhere in the field. For instance, if the player attempts to evolve a Vulpix into Ninetales, they will be required to find three Fire Stones on the table.

In Pokémon Pinball, the Counter starts empty but can be filled with three images of the current Evolution Item. For instance, whenever the player gets a Fire Stone somewhere on the playing field, an image of a Fire Stone appears on the Counter, until all three Fire Stones are acquired, completely filling the Counter. In Pokémon Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire, the Counter consists of the word "EVO" (in all languages but German, which uses "ENT" instead); there are no specific images in the Counter for each kind of Evolution Item, unlike the previous game. Whenever the player gets an Evolution Item, one of the three letters of "EVO" lights up.

In both games, the Center Hole opens above the Pokémon Panel open when the player has finished getting the three Evolution Items (thus completing the Counter), allowing the player to evolve the current Pokémon.

Bonus Stages

The Counter is able to display a number of Poké Balls for the purpose of unlocking Bonus Stages (such as the Meowth Stage in Pokémon Pinball, or the Duskull Stage in Pokémon Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire). This is the default state of the Counter outside the Catch 'em Mode and the Evolution Mode.

The Counter starts empty (with no Poké Balls), and can display up to three Poké Balls. It increases by 1 when the player catches a Pokémon, and by 2 when the player evolves a Pokémon, up to the maximum number of Poké Balls. (for instance, if the Counter already has 3 Poké Balls, it can't increase any further even if the player catches or evolves a Pokémon; if the Counter has 2 Poké Balls, evolving a Pokémon will only increase the Counter by 1, instead of the full amount of 2 Poké Balls)

When this Counter has three Poké Balls, the text "Go to Bonus" appears in the Pokémon Panel with an image of the currently available Bonus Stage. Once this happens, the player enters that stage when the ball enters the Center Hole. When the player returns to the main gameplay, the Counter resets (returns to 0 Poké Balls).


Pokémon Pinball

English Pinball Counter Catch.png Pinball Counter Ex.png Pinball Counter Link.png Pinball Counter Fire.png Pinball Counter Leaf.png Pinball Counter Moon.png Pinball Counter Thunder.png Pinball Counter Water.png Pinball Counter Balls.png
Japanese Pinball Counter Get.png
French Pinball Counter Catch French.png
Spanish Pinball Counter Catch Spanish.png
German Pinball Counter Catch German.png Pinball Counter Ep.png
Italian Pinball Counter Catch Italian.png Pinball Counter Es.png
Catch Experience Link Cable Fire Stone Leaf Stone Moon Stone Thunder Stone Water Stone Bonus

Pokémon Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire

English Pinball RS Counter Catch.png Pinball RS Counter Evo.png Pinball RS Counter Balls.png
Japanese Pinball RS Counter Get.png
French Pinball RS Counter Catch French.png
Italian Pinball RS Counter Catch Italian.png
Spanish Pinball RS Counter Catch Spanish.png
German Pinball RS Counter Catch German.png Pinball RS Counter Evo German.png
Catch Evolution Bonus
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