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Artwork drawn by Hitoshi Ariga
depicting the first Ultra Beasts to appear in the series
The Ultra Beasts (Japanese: ウルトラビースト Ultra Beast) are a group of extradimensional Pokémon originating from Ultra Space. They possess power that transcends humans' understanding of the world.
Ultra Beasts infrequently appear from Ultra Wormholes in Alola. These appearances are apparently as unexpected for the Ultra Beasts as for Alolans, which tends to make them combative. They are especially drawn to people who have passed through an Ultra Wormhole, due to the residual wormhole energy on them, apparently expecting to find a wormhole they can use to return home.
There are currently eleven known Ultra Beasts:
All Ultra Beasts share the Ability Beast Boost.
When encountered in the wild, the residual energy from traveling through an Ultra Wormhole manifests as an aura that boosts one of their stats at the start of battle, similar to Totem Pokémon. Wicke theorizes that they store this energy in their bodies.
Most Poké Balls have difficulty recognizing Ultra Beasts as Pokémon due to their extradimensional origins, impairing their ability to effectively catch them. Only the Master Ball and Beast Balls escape this impairment.
Although unconfirmed, Aether Foundation scientists hypothesized that Cosmog is also an Ultra Beast, due to its ability to create Ultra Wormholes. Necrozma's Pokédex entry also states that it is "reminiscent of the Ultra Beasts", but when it was in the wild, the International Police reported that all Ultra Beasts it had detected had been caught, and Beast Balls are not effective at catching it. Additionally, Dulse refers to Necrozma as "a creature almost like an Ultra Beast" in Pokémon Ultra Sun.
Although an extremely rare event, legends in Alola tell of fearsome Pokémon appearing from Ultra Wormholes. The legends also tell that the guardian deities would fight fiercely against them.
Years prior to the events of Generation VII, Professor Mohn published a theory on Ultra Wormholes and papers describing Nihilego.
The Aether Foundation also conducted research on the Ultra Beasts. This included the development of the Beast Killer project to create a Pokémon—Type: Full—that could fight against Ultra Beasts. The Beast Killer project ended in failure, and the three known Type: Full were cryogenically frozen and their names changed to Type: Null. It also developed the Beast Ball to catch the Ultra Beasts.
The International Police have also tracked Ultra Beasts in the past and into the present under a secret division known as the UB Task Force. The UB Task Force is tasked with investigating the ecology of Ultra Beasts, protecting people from harm from them, and either safeguarding or destroying the Ultra Beasts. Ten years prior to the events of Sun and Moon, a three-person team composed of Looker, Nanu, and an unnamed Faller came to Alola to track down and destroy a Guzzlord; in the process, the Faller was killed. The International Police refer to each of the Ultra Beasts by code names.
The first reported sightings of Buzzwole, Pheromosa, Xurkitree, Kartana, and Celesteela were after the incident at Aether Paradise where Lusamine forced Cosmog to create an Ultra Wormhole and used it to travel to Ultra Space.
The first reported sightings of Stakataka and Blacephalon were after the incident at the Altar of the SunneUS/Altar of the MooneUM whenDusk Mane NecrozmaUS/Dawn Wings NecrozmaUM opens many Ultra Wormholes across Alola. The first reported sighting of Poipole was through the Ultra Recon Squad.
In the games
Pokémon Sun and Moon
During the main story, the player encounters Nihilego at Aether Paradise during their first meeting with Aether President Lusamine, when it emerges from a spontaneously appearing Ultra Wormhole. During the player's confrontation with Lusamine after she captures Nebby, Lusamine uses Nebby's power to open Ultra Wormholes across the Alola region, bringing Ultra Beasts into the region; Nihilego is seen emerging from the portal near Lusamine, while BuzzwoleS/PheromosaM is seen emerging from a portal over Melemele Island and battling Tapu Koko. The player also encounters several Nihilego in Ultra Space after arriving with SolgaleoS/LunalaM and Lillie.
After the player becomes Champion, some Ultra Beasts remain at large around Alola. The player receives a card from a stranger directing them to visit the motel on Akala Island's Route 8. When they enter the guest room, they will find Looker and Anabel, who invite the player to join the International Police's UB Task Force and protect the Ultra Beasts currently loose in Alola. Upon accepting, the player begins a series of missions to capture the Ultra Beasts, spanning all four of Alola's islands, each time based out of the island's motel (or the restaurant on Poni Island). In some missions, there are multiple of the same species of Ultra Beast to be captured, and in some missions they may be found at either of two locations. If the player flees from or defeats an Ultra Beast, it remains in the area and the player will still be able to find it again immediately (either at the same place or at the alternate location, if applicable). When the player is in an area where there are Ultra Beasts during a mission, the music changes from the area's normal score.
All Poké Balls except Master Balls and Beast Balls have a catch rate multiplier of 1× against Ultra Beasts; the Beast Ball has a catch rate multiplier of 5× for Ultra Beasts. If a Beast Ball is used against any other type of Pokémon, its catch rate multiplier is 0.1×.
Unlike regular Pokémon, the Pokédex will not record Ultra Beasts as seen; it will only register them when they are caught. If an Ultra Beast is not in the Pokédex, its name will show as ??? in battle.
Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon
During the story, the player encounters Poipole as the main Pokémon used by the Ultra Recon Squad member DulseUS/SolieraUM. Like in Pokémon Sun and Moon, Nihilego appears at Aether Paradise after meeting with Lusamine. During the player's confrontation with Dusk ManeUS/Dawn WingsUM Necrozma, it proceeds to open multiple Ultra Wormholes all across Alola, unleashing Ultra Beasts into Alola. BlacephalonUS/StakatakaUM appears on Mahalo Trial, facing against Hala, Hau, and Tapu Koko. Additionally, Olivia finds BuzzwoleUS/PheromosaUM on the Ruins of Life, Nanu finds Guzzlord on the Ruins of Abundance, and Hapu finds Xurkitree on the Ruins of Hope.
The first seven Ultra Beasts can be reached in white Ultra Wormholes in the Ultra Warp Ride. Nihilego can be found in Ultra Deep Sea, BuzzwoleUS in Ultra Jungle, PheromosaUM in Ultra Desert, Xurkitree in Ultra Plant, CelesteelaUM in Ultra Crater, KartanaUS in Ultra Forest, and Guzzlord in Ultra Ruin. They can be caught once per visit. After defeating Necrozma at Megalo Tower, the Ultra Recon Squad offers Poipole to the player, and after the player becomes the Champion, the player can catch two BlacephalonUS/StakatakaUM at Poni Grove.
As with Sun and Moon, the Pokédex will not record Ultra Beasts as seen. It will only register them when they are caught, and their names will be shown as ??? in battle until then. However, there are several exceptions in which they will be recorded as having been seen, as the player will be informed of their names — Poipole after battling the Ultra Recon Squad in Paniola Ranch, Kartana after battling an Ultra Forest KartenvoyUS, and BlacephalonUS/StakatakaUM after encountering one at Poni Grove.
In the anime
Nihilego debuted in a flashback in A Masked Warning!, in which Gladion revealed to Ash that Lillie was once attacked by one when she was younger, resulting in her present fear of touching Pokémon. It appeared again in another flashback in Mission: Total Recall!.
In Faba's Revenge!, Faba managed to summon another Nihilego from an Ultra Wormhole. Lusamine, Gladion, and Ash briefly battled the Ultra Beast before it took Lusamine into the Ultra Wormhole and disappeared. They were given the proper name Nihilego in The Professors' New Adventure!.
Multiple Nihilego appeared in Rescuing the Unwilling! in Ultra Deep Sea.
Nihilego appeared again in a flashback, and Poipole debuted in The Professors' New Adventure!. It would eventually be caught by Ash in SM067.
Buzzwole debuted in SM061, where it wreaked havoc throughout Melemele Island until the Ultra Guardians captured it in a Beast Ball and released it back into Ultra Space. In this episode, it is also revealed that despite being Pokémon, Meowth cannot understand what Ultra Beasts are saying.
Celesteela debuted in SM069, where Sophocles found one while camping at Bamboo Hill. He and his classmates dug it out of the ground, and although the Ultra Guardians failed to catch it due to its large size and the fact that it was rooted down, it eventually flew off back into space. Unlike other Ultra Beasts, this Celesteela had been growing in Alola for more than 200 years.
In the manga
In the Pokémon Adventures manga
The Ultra Beasts debuted in the Sun & Moon chapter, after Gladion loses against Sun, he contemplates about losing his chance to get to the Guardian deities that he promises to get stronger to confront them.
At Lush Jungle, Moon and Mallow found Tapu Lele in battle with a Xurkitree emerging from an Ultra Wormhole. Moon attempted to capture the Xurkitree, but it managed to retreat back inside the Ultra Wormhole and escape. Later, the two chose to give it the codename "Lighting" to avoid having to describe its appearance every time when talking about it.
In the TCG
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Ultra Beasts were introduced to the Pokémon Trading Card Game in the Crimson Invasion expansion as a classification of Pokémon cards. Certain attacks, Special Energy cards, and Trainer cards interact specifically with Ultra Beast cards. Unlike the core series of games, the TCG considers Dusk Mane Necrozma, Dawn Wings Necrozma, and Ultra Necrozma to be Ultra Beasts. Every Ultra Beast card has an attack that affects or is affected by the player or opponent's Prize cards. In the case of an Ultra Beast GX card, this is always its GX attack. With the exception of Necrozma's forms, each Ultra Beast's GX attack uses its code name.
In other languages