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Video Game: Pokémon Red and Blue aka: Pokemon Fire Redand Leaf Green
"You've finally been granted your Pokémon Trainer's license. Now, it's time to head out to become the world's greatest Pokémon Trainer. It's going to take all you've got to collect 150 Pokémon in this enormous world...can you develop the ultimate Pokémon strategy to defeat the eight Gym Leaders and become the greatest Pokémon Master of all time?"
— Blurb on the back of the boxes of Pokémon Red and Blue Versions
The first installments of the Pokémon franchise hit the Game Boy in 1996 in Japan (as Red and Green; see below) and in 1998 in North America. Taking place in a part of the world called Kanto (later shown to be east of a region called Johto; three years after Team Rocket is taken down in Kanto both regions are explored by a kid from Johto) based on the Japanese region of Kanto, the plot is simple: you, an eleven-year-old with aNice Hat, are offered your very first Pokémon by Professor Oak, the local authority on Pokémon. He gives you a choice of three different types: Bulbasaur, Charmander, or Squirtle. His own grandson, your long-time Rival, gets second pick, and takes advantage of this to snag whichever one happens to be strong against your chosen partner.In exchange for your first Pokémon, Oak wants you to run an errand for him: travel around the region and collect as many different Pokémon as you can, recording all of them in your Pokédex. Of course, along the way, you're more than welcome to challenge the eight Pokémon Gyms, collect their badges, and take on the Elite Four in hopes of becoming the Champion of the Pokémon League. Then there's the emerging threat of Team Rocket, a proudly evil organization that uses Pokémon for its own selfish ends. Somebody's gonna have to deal with them, too — and who better than an eleven-year-old and his team of trained monsters?While the game's balance is undeniably broken (Balance? Psychic types LAUGH at your pitiful thoughts of BALANCE!), and glitches abound (Missingnoooooo!)... it's Pokémon.It should be noted that in Japan, the first two games were released as Red and Green. Blue was released later as a third version, with a bit of a graphical improvement over the originals. For the international releases, the names Red and Blue were used. Although the Japanese Blue provided the graphics and game script for translation, the Japanese Red and Green provided the wild and version-exclusive Pokémon for the international Red and Blue respectively. Aside from its codebase, this makes the Japanese Blue the only main series game to lack an international release.As evidence of its incredible popularity, Pokémon Yellow was later released as a fourth version in Japan in 1998, and as a third international version in 1999. Yellow took elements from the TV series and transported them back into the games, however loosely. Instead of picking one of the usual trio, a wild Pikachu ends up as your starter, and follows you everywhere rather than getting into the usual Poké Ball. The familiar Team Rocket trio also show up, although Meowth acts as a normal mon as opposed to an equal member to Jesse and James, acting as the third member in their party alongside Ekans/Arbok and Koffing/Weezing.After a successful run, Red, Blue, and Yellow were followed by the Game Boy Color-enhanced (though they can still be played on a previous incarnation of the Game Boy, as well as later ones) Gold and Silver, taking place three years after Red became champion and featuring that kid from Johto mentioned above, the return of Team Rocket, and improved the graphics that Yellow didn't (back sprites, etc.).Jump ahead a couple gens, and Red and Blue reappeared once more in the form of their Video Game Remakes on the Game Boy Advance: FireRed and LeafGreen. These allowed players to relive the classic games with many of the new benefits, tweaks, and balances of the second and third generations, though it took some Retconning here and there, and added in some new areas to explore after finishing the familiar challenge(s).These games have received two animated adaptations. The first one is the first season of the main Pokémon anime. The second one is the anime special Mini Series titled Pokémon Origins, which aired on October 2, 2013 in Japan (10 days prior to the release of the tie-in games Pokémon X and Y) and November 2013 in the United States. This miniseries essentially serves as a more accurate depiction of the plot of Red and Blue/Green, being a Truer To The TextAnime of the Game in comparison to the main Pokémon anime.Another detail worth noting is that many of the tropes listed under Red and Blue's category also apply to Yellow, FireRed, and LeafGreen.
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Tropes used in Red and Blue
Absurdly High Level Cap: It's possible to take your Pokemon up to level 100. this is really only useful for competitive battling, though, as you'll be able to complete everything within the game with your Mons around level 50-60.
All There in the Manual: The manual explains the basic background of you and your rival, states your age, and states the events that lead up to the start of your adventure.
Always Accurate Attack: Swift is specifically coded to never miss. (It being a Normal type move, Ghosts are still immune.)
American Kirby Is Hardcore: The translation team made some interesting choices that have since been grandfathered into the series. Take the low-level move "Tail Whip" — with a name like that it should be some kind of badass Tail Slap that leaves the opponent's Defense physically weakened, right? Wrong. Its proper (i.e. Japanese) name is the decidedly-less-badass "Tail Wag" (and its description in later games supports this).
The Anime of the Game: While of course they were the inspiration for the long running Pokémon anime, there is also the miniseries Pokémon Origins, based more closely on Red and Blue than the main anime is.
Antidote Effect: In general, because you can only carry 20 types of itemnote You could carry up to 99 of a single item, like Potions or Poké Balls, but there were only 20 inventory slots, it is wise to carry as little as you could get away with. You could store up to 50 additional items in the PC, but this can only be accessed while in Pokémon Centers, not out in the world. A few specific examples:
Awakenings become useless as soon as you get the Poké Flute. It will wake Pokémon up inside or out of battle, and has no limit.
Once Full Heals become available for purchase, most of the single-effect healing items (Antidotes, Paralyze Heals, Burn Heals, etc.) are no longer worth carrying. While more expensive than any of them individually, carrying a stack of Full Heals only takes up one precious inventory slot and could cover any effect you come across.
Apocalyptic Log: The records of Mewtwo's birth, found in the Pokémon Mansion.
Moves that take two turns to charge up, such as Solar Beam, Skull Bash, Sky Attack, etc. The charge-up turn leaves you vulnerable to attack in the meantime, and if the opponent uses something like Fly or Dig, your attack will miss anyway.
High damage but low accuracy moves, including the One-Hit KO moves. While awesome when they hit, they're simply too inaccurate to be reliable. They also generally have low PP, meaning you'll get to use them fewer times. This is why you'll see most players using weaker but more accurate/higher PP moves, such as Thunderbolt instead of Thunder or Flamethrower instead of Fire Blast.
Boring but Practical: The bog-standard Normal/Flying type Pidgey and it's evolutions. A Pidgey may very well be the first Pokemon you catch yourself, and if raised diligently, can be one of the most reliable Pokemon on your team throughout much of the game. Its final evolution, Pidgeot, only starts to become outclassed around the time of Victory Road, and by then you'll likely have captured one of the legendary birds to replace it with.
Bowdlerize: The grumpy old man in Virdian City who initially won't let you pass because... he hasn't had his coffee yet. Before it was ever confirmed, many gamers correctly guessed that in the original Japanese version of the game, the old man was actually drunk.
Breakout Character: Three: Charizard, Pikachu, and Mewtwo. They're arguably the three most popular characters in the series. Pikachu, thanks to the anime, became the mascot of the franchise and even had Updated Re-release in Pokemon Yellow to cash in on its popularity. Charizard and Mewtwo both got two mega forms in the Gen VI games, even being the first two Pokémon whose mega forms were confirmed.
Broken Bridge: In addition to the NPC Roadblock examples mentioned below, there are the two Snorlax blocking your way south to Fuchsia City after falling asleep in the middle of the road.
A simple Bicycle costs 1,000,000 Pokédollars, one more than you can even carry. (Luckily, you get a voucher to acquire a bike for free.)
Beverages can only be purchased one place: on the roof of the Celadon Dept. Store.
Simple fishing rods aren't available for purchase anywhere. You can only get them as gifts from specific NPCs.
Com Mons: Just about anything you can catch up through Mt. Moon qualifies. In particular are the Pidgey, Rattata, and Spearow you can catch around Viridian City as well as the Bug-types in Viridian Forest.
There are trainers with evolved Pokémon at lower levels than that Pokémon actually evolves at. For instance, your Rival will have a Pidgeotto at level 17 when you battle him in Cerulean City. Pidgey evolves into Pidgeotto at level 18...
NPC Pokémon will never run out of PP for a move (This is changed in later games).
Several trainers have Pokémon who know moves they cannot learn. Lance's Dragonite knowing Barrier is a particularly flagrant example.
Convenient Weakness Placement: In several locations, you can find Pokemon which are strong against the local gym leader. For example, Diglett's Cave outside of Vermillion City is full of Ground-type Diglett, who are immune to Lt. Surge's Electric-type attacks. Just outside of Celadon City, there is a patch of grass where you can catch either Growlithe or Vulpix (depending on your version,) both Fire-types to counter Erika's Grass-types. In order to get to Cinnabar Island, home of the Fire-type gym leader Blaine, you have to pass through the Seafoam Islands which are full of Water-type Pokemon to counter him.
Critical Hit: They exist and, unlike later games in the series, are not based on the move itself but the Pokemon's base speed.
Critical Hit Class: As a result, speedy users of the move "Slash" (which has a high Critical Hit chance) like Scyther and Persian were very viable, even in competitive battling, because of this.
Crutch Character: Butterfree and Beedrill. Their pre-evolutions can be caught early (before the first gym) and they evolve at level 10. They pack quite a punch that early and Butterfree's various "powder" attacks make catching other Pokemon much easier. Their usefulness tends to peter out around the fourth gym once you've caught and evolved a few other Pokemon.
Demonic Possession: All the channelers in Pokémon Tower are possessed by Ghost Pokémon (until you defeat them).
Desperation Attack: "Struggle," a move only used when the PP for every other move is gone.
Difficulty Spike: The reason for the Forced Level Grinding between the 8th gym leader (Giovanni), whose strongest Pokemon is a level 50 Rhydon (with 4 others at level 45 or less,) and the first Elite Four member, Lorelei, who has a team of five all at level 53 or above. With proper typing, you can easily defeat Giovanni with a team in the low-mid 40s, meaning you'll want to grind each of your Mons about 8-10 levels before even attempting the Elite Four (who only get stronger after Lorelei and must all be faced one after the other.)
Early in the game, there's the Magikarp Salesman. 500 Pokédollars for a Magikarp might be a waste, but getting a Gyarados before you'd normally get a fishing rod isn't. (Even waiting until you get a rod will still allow you to catch a Magikarp incredibly early, as you get the Old Rod in Vermillion City, home of the 3rd gym. Drop off your Magikarp with the Day Care Man while you complete the SS Anne and the gym then return for it. It should be close to Level 20 where it evolves.)
Before passing through Viridian City, head over to Route 22. You won't be able to pass through the Pokémon League Gate yet, but you can catch a Nidoran. Get it to level 16 (it only takes a little grinding) and pick up a Moon Stone in Mt. Moon. Use it, and you'll have yourself a Nidoking or Nidoqueen before taking on the 2nd gym. It won't learn many good moves naturally, but teach it a few moves using TMs and it will curb stomp most foes through the first half of the game. Teach it Dig and use it against Lt. Surge to make the battle with him embarrassingly easy.
Speaking of Dig, it counts as a Nuke move. It deals damage closer to that of an end-game move, is available after completing the 2nd gym, and can be learned by many Pokemon, including two of the starters.
Trading in a higher level Pokemon from another game. The game makes an attempt to Nerf this by making higher-level traded Pokemon disobey in battle, meaning it will refuse your commands about 3/4 of the time and sometimes fall asleep. But when it has such a massive level advantage, it will only take Scratch Damage from opponents while dishing out One Hit KOs during that 1/4 of the time it does attack.
Lass: (after approaching the player from a few steps away) Eek! Are you touching me?
Early Game Hell: Very much so. Arguably the most difficult part of the game is the early part up until you beat Misty, the 2nd gym leader. In terms of Pokemon, you're limited to your starter, Crutch Character bug Pokemon (if you bother to Level Grind them,) and Com Mons such as the early game bird Pokemon and Rattata. (You can try trading for Pokemon to get around this, but you run the risk of them being disobedient in battle.) There are also only a limited number of trainer battles, meaning you'll be low on money and will have to grind mostly against weak wild Pokemon. Viridian Forest isn't too difficult if you start with Charmander or teach a Pidgey/Spearow Gust/Peck, but you run the constant risk of being poisoned by Weedle's Poison Sting. Brock will be a breeze if you start with Squirtle or Bulbasaur, but will be more challenging to a Charmander trainer. Then you get to Mt. Moon...a labyrinthine multi-level cave full of trainers, Geodude, and Zubat (who are fast and will gleefully Confuse your Pokemon with Supersonic.) Eventually, you get through Mt. Moon...only to encounter your Rival in Cerulean City. Finally, you battle Misty, whose Starmie is considered That One Boss by many, many players. Survive all of that and the game then opens up, becoming much friendlier and giving you more options in terms of Pokemon to catch, trainers to battle, and places to explore.
There's only one Special stat, covering the job of both Special Attack and Special Defense in later games.
The Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors has a number of oddities. Due to a bug, Psychic mons are immune to Ghost attacks, which are played up by NPCs and the anime as their primary weakness. Intentionally, Fire is merely "not weak" to Ice instead of resistant, and Bug and Poison are both super effective against each other.
Critical Hit ratios are not inherent to a move, but calculated based on a mon's speed. Their base speed, a trait not of the individual mon but the species, and it doesn't go up as you level. Focus Energy, which is supposed to boost the critical ratio, instead quarters it. Moves with a high critical hit ratio do exist, but instead of just having a higher % chance, they use a different formula entirely which nearly guarantees a crit on every move. And crits ignore all stat changes, not just the ones that would be convenient to ignore.
Paralysis and Burn cut speed and attack respectively, as intended and carried on into all future games, but the stat change is stacked into the normal stat modifier, instead of being its own thing. Waking from Sleep consumes a turn, which makes the status nigh-unbeatable if your mon outspeeds the enemy.
Due to glitches, moves with a "100%" hit chance (whether from their base stats or accuracy boosts/evasion drops) will still miss 1/256 of the time (though Swift is immune, being specifically coded to never miss), and recovery moves will fail if the mon's HP is exactly 255 or 511 below its max.
Roar and Whirlwind can't be used for "pseudo hazing", because instead of forcing a switch in trainer/link battles, they just don't do anything.
Speaking of Haze, it's such a good Status Buff Dispel in this game that it removes status ailments, too...but that aspect only works on the opponent.
Unlike future games, when a Pokemon is stored in the PC, they are not automatically healed. A certain Let's Play of Pokemon Green lampshades this on why their Voltorb is not cured from poison after taken out of the box right after catching it.
The appearances of many Pokémon were codified by the anime and the later Yellow version. In Red and Blue, some of them are unrecognizable from how they're widely known now. Take a look at Geodude◊, Cloyster◊, and Gastly◊, for example.
Not to mention Koffing having its skull and crossbones above its face rather than below like in every other appearance.
There's also the odd open-endedness of a good part of the game. Most of the successor titles would make you take on the Gyms and events in a very set order. While you still need to foil Team Rocket plots in order, you may do so at your own pace and once you beat Misty, you are free to challenge the next four Gyms (Lt. Surge, Erika, Koga, Sabrina) in whatever order you deem fit.
The TM list is weird, ranging from moves as basic as Rage, Bide and Water Gun to the likes of Bubblebeam, Swords Dance and Fissure.
When trying to catch legendaries, a failed catch attempt is rendered as "You missed the POKéMON!" instead of the standard "Oh, the POKéMON break free!" and its variants.
The Generation I Pokemon games remain the only installation in the series in which it is possible to migrate Pokemon back from their sequels, thanks to Gold, Silver, and Crystal versions all being released for the same system. Because of the changes in platforms and system overhauls in between generations, any ability to transfer Pokemon forward to the next generation is a one-way trip.
End Game Plus: After becoming Pokemon Champion, the credits will roll and you'll be returned to your home in Pallet Town. Cerulean Cave will now be open, and you're free to challenge the Elite Four again or battle against your friends. Stops short of being a Playable Epilogue (like the later games in the series have) because no one will recognize your achievement as Champion. Other than the NPC Roadblock in front of Cerulean Cave being gone, the game world is exactly the same.
Escape Rope: The Trope Namer. Escape Ropes are items that will return you to the last Pokemon Center you visited. The moves Dig and Teleport can be used outside of battle to similar effect, with the former working in dungeons and sending you to the entrance and the latter sending you to the last Pokémon Center you used when used in outdoor areas. The move Fly expands on Teleport's function, allowing you to fly to any town (and, in some games, any rural Pokémon Center, such as the one outside Mt. Moon in FireRed and LeafGreen) you've set foot in, essentially making it a more flexible upgrade to Teleport (with the catch that not all Pokémon that can learn Teleport can learn Fly).
Fake Longevity: You'll spend a good portion of your total play time doing two things: walking and Level Grinding. Your walking speed is painfully slow, and while the bicycle helps, it can't be used everywhere. As for grinding, expect to be doing a LOT of it. (Future games, including the remakes, helped alleviate this by adding Running Shoes to the game which increase your walking speed.) Several players have used cheats to get unlimited Rare Candies and used them to raise their Mons to appropriate levels, skipping the grinding altogether while not making them overpowered. Those players have discovered that you can complete the game in only half the time necessary to complete it while grinding. (Though you miss out on as many opportunities to catch new Pokemon.)
Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Kanto = the Kanto region of Japan, and eastern Chubu as well, with Johto from Generation II being based on the western part of Chubu in addition to Kansai. Kanto is the only region in the Pokémon games to share its name with the Japanese region it is based on.
Anti-Grinding: An unintentional example, due to a glitch. You are training a low level Pokémon on something that's much stronger, and it gains enough experience to skip a level or two? Hope it doesn't learn anything on the level it just skipped, because it won't learn it!
If you didn't add any new caught data to the Pokédex nor bought any Poké Balls by the time you beat Blue on Route 22, you can go to Prof. Oak for free Poké Balls. Outside of Yellow, this will probably need grinding.
Nowhere in the game itself does it tell you what certain moves actually do. This is especially frustrating when a Pokemon is trying to learn a new move. All you get to know is the name of the move, the type of the move, and the move's PP. Is it stronger or weaker than another move your Pokemon already knows? Can it inflict any status effects? Who knows?
Heroic Mime: Played with. You never hear your trainer speak, but attempting to talk to the "Copycat" girl in Saffron City produces dialog, subtitled as your own, of a one-sided conversation; it's the Copycat's dialog, mimicking the things the trainer implicitly said to her.
The Dragon type was probably intended to be this, being equally effective against all other elemental types, despite that there was only one evolutionary family of Dragon-types, and the only actual Dragon-type attack, "Dragon Rage", was a Fixed Damage Attack exempt from Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors altogether.
The Psychic type quickly became broken, and not just because the strongest Pokémon in the first generation (the legendary Mewtwo) belonged to that element. Due to a programming error, the type's intended weakness to Ghost-types was instead turned into an immunity. It was weak to Bug-types, but there were few strong Bug-type attacks or Bug Pokémon. Furthermore, most Bug-types and all Ghost-types had Poison as a secondary type, which was weak to Psychic. On the subject of Poison-types, Poison was far and away the most common elemental type of Generation I, including most Bug- and Grass-type Pokémon. On top of that, Psychics tended to have a strong Special stat back when Special was the One Stat to Rule Them All. It was telling that most of the things Gold/Silver added or changed were specifically designed to counteract Psychics (adding Dark and Steel types, splitting Special into two stats).
Normal only has one weakness, which was Fighting, which is easily covered (Psychic), and it does regular damage to everything except Ghost (immune) and Rock (resist), the former and latter can be covered with Earthquake (wide distribution, and every Ghost-type in the game being Poison-typed helped), and every Rock-type in at the time is weak to Grass and/or Water.
The increased power of Fighting-types over the next few generations and the addition of Steel (which resists Normal-type attacks) nerfed the Normal-type.
Infinity +1 Mon: Mewtwo, hands down. Massively powerful on his own, made even more powerful by being a horribly broken Psychic-type. Only available after becoming Pokemon League champion and comes at the massive level 70. (You generally only need Pokemon in the level 50-60 range to defeat the Elite Four.) Due to his status as this trope, his use is banned from virtually all forms of competitive play.
Infinity -1 Mon: The legendary bird trio (Articuno, Zapdos, Moltres) and Mew (who can only be acquired via glitches.) Like Mewtwo, they are also usually banned from competitive play.
Several non-legendary Mons also qualify. Your fully evolved starter is one of the strongest of his type in the game and will usually be your most reliable Mon throughout the game. Dragonite is known as a "pseudo-legendary," being difficult to obtain but not unique, as well as very powerful. Alakazam basically functions as a "Mewtwo Lite," both being the game-breaking Psychic-type, but unlike Mewtwo, Alakazam is not banned. Gyarados also qualifies despite his crippling 4x weakness to the commonly used offensive Electric-type. Due to the bugged way in which Critical Hits are determined, speedy "Slash" users like Scyther and Persian become this on the competitive scene since they can deal critical hits on almost every move.
Inventory Management Puzzle: In your bag, you are limited to 20 individual slots for unique items. For instance, whether you were carrying one potion or 99 potions, it only takes up one inventory "slot." Because of this, it is wise to carry as few unique items as you can get away with. You can store an extra 50 unique items in the PC to help alleviate this somewhat, but the PC can only be accessed in a Pokemon Center, meaning those items won't be available to you in the game world.
Leaked Experience: The "Exp.All" item. If you have it in your inventory, it splits the experience gained from a battle between all of the Mons in your party. (Later generations, since item-holding becomes a mechanic, replace it with the much less cumbersome "Exp. Share".)
Level Grinding: Expect to be doing quite a bit of it throughout the game. The most flagrant case comes after beating the 8th gym but before taking on the Elite Four, where you'll need to gain about 10-15 levels with each of your Pokemon in order to stand a chance.
Magic Is Rare; Health Is Cheap: Potions of various strengths which can be used to heal HP can be purchased from PokeMarts and found all over the game world. Ethers and Elixirs, which restore PP, cannot be purchased and are extremely rare to find. (It's best to save them all for the Elite Four, where you'll have to fight 4 make that 5 difficult battles in a row without being able to restore the PP of moves at a Pokemon Center in between.
A few other Mons also qualify, though not to the same extent as Magikarp. First are the Bug-type Pokemon Caterpie and Weedle. They know only one weak offensive move (Tackle for Caterpie, Poison Sting for Weedle) and evolve into their cocoon forms (Metapod and Kakuna, respectively.) However, at level 10 (extremely low by the standards of most Pokemon,) they evolve into their much more powerful final forms: Butterfree and Beedrill. You can read more about them in Crutch Character above.
Abra also qualifies. When you catch it, it only knows one move: Teleport. Teleport allows it to flee battle, making it very hard to catch without putting it to sleep first. It will effectively be useless in battle for you, but grind it to level 16, and it evolves into the much more useful Kadabra. You can then immediately trade Kadabra to a friend and then trade it back, giving you an almighty Alakazam.
Metal Slime: Abra. While not an uncommon encounter, it has the annoying habit of using its only move (Teleport) to flee from battle, making it incredibly difficult to catch. If you are able to catch one (likely by putting it to sleep before it can teleport,) you can evolve it into the much more powerful Kadabra (and later, Alakazam,) giving you an extremely powerful Pokemon.
Mundane Utility: The HM moves allow your Pokemon to perform actions outside of battle. Unfortunately, they take up a spot from a potentially better move, and only Fly, Surf, and Strength are of any use in combat. This led to many players keeping an "HM Slave" or "HM Mule" in their party who can learn the crappier HM moves (Cut and Flash.) Woe be to anyone who taught their starter Cut in ignorance, as Move Deleters didn't exist until the next generation of games...
The Needless: On Routes 19, 20, and 21, you will encounter swimmers who do nothing but swim and float around. Given the fact that ocean water is very salty and a poor conductor of heat, it's a small wonder how they will never expire from hypothermia and dehydration.
No Campaign for the Wicked: To the frustration of some players, there is no option to take up the offer of the Team Rocket recruiter on Nugget Bridge.
NPC Roadblock: All over the place. There's the old man in Viridian City who won't let you pass until he's had his "coffee" (which he has only after you deliver Oak's Parcel,) the guy in Pewter City who won't let you pass to Mt. Moon until you beat Brock, the gate guards who won't let you into Saffron City until you give them a drink, the cop in front of the burgled house in Cerulean City who only moves aside after you talk to Bill at Cerulean Cape, the guy who stands in front of Cerulean Cave until after you beat the Elite Four and the Champion, etc. etc. etc...
Off Model: Several of the in-game Pokémon sprites in Japan's Blue and the international releases. While the sprites in the original Japanese Red/Green were simply badly drawn, those from Blue and the international releases were genuinely off-model, getting some of the monsters' most recognizable characteristics plain wrong: for instance, Koffing's skull mark is shown above its face instead of below, Cloyster's shell is horizontal instead of vertical, Kingler has two claws of the same size instead of having one claw bigger than the other, the center egg of Exeggcute being larger than the others instead of them being all the same size and so on. All of the sprites were changed again for Yellow to make them more closely resemble the official artwork.
Made worse in France because it was released there in October 1998, a year after The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX, to which it compares unfavorably in terms of graphics (just look at trees, for example, or the 2x scaled "back of your pokemon" sprites), making it look extremely dated. Most people there had no idea the game was actually three years old and preceded LADX by two years.
Old Save Bonus: If the player beats the Master Cup in Pokemon Stadium or its sequel with a Pikachu in their party will have their Pikachu learn surf (a move Pikachu otherwise cannot legitimately learn).
Pokémon Yellow took this unlockable a few steps forward. First of all, there's a special overworld sprite for when Pikachu uses the move outside of battle. Also, in a house south of Saffron City, the player can play an Excite Bike clone called "Pikachu's Beach". Sadly, the remakes Subvert this trope. While a Surfing Pikachu can be obtained leginimatly through Pokémon Box, the mini-game is not there (although a Dummied Out house in the same location was found by hacking, so it was probably intended to be there).
One Stat to Rule Them All: "Special" dictated both attack and defense power in regard to special-based elements (Fire, Ice, Lightning, Psychic, etc.). It was toned down a great deal in Generation II, wherein it was divided into separate Special Attack and Special Defense.
Rare Candy: The Trope Namer. Rare Candies are rare items which, when given to a Pokemon, increase that Mon's level by one instantly.
"That rotten PRESIDENT! He shouldn't have sent me to the TIKSI BRANCH! (...) It's in Russian no man's land!"
Schmuck Bait: The Magikarp salesman. While a level 5 Pokemon with no useful moves is hardly worth that much money, the good news is you encounter him early in the game, before you can obtain the fishing rod needed to catch a Magikarp normally. So a subversion if you intend to obtain a Gyarados much earlier than normal.
Sequence Breaking: Lt. Surge, Erika, Koga, Sabrina, and Blaine can be fought in nearly any order. The only constraint is that you have to beat Koga to get to Blaine, since Surf is required.
The Game Corner Rocket Hideout can be skipped entirely by using a Poké Doll on the Marowak ghost in the Pokémon Tower.
When you first encounter him, one Hiker trainer in Rock Tunnel says, "Hit me with your best shot!" After the battle, he says, "Fired away!"
Also in the Rock Tunnel, one of the Pokémaniac's (Pokémaniac Ashton in FireRed and LeafGreen) introduction quotes is "Pokemon fight! Ready, go!"
The use of a PC to store your monsters seems lifted directly from the original monster collecting game, Shin Megami Tensei.
Sidetracked by the Gold Saucer: In an in-universe example, every Gym has an NPC standing near the entrance who offers general advice about the Gym's leader — except in Celadon City, where he's too busy playing slots at the Rocket Game Corner.
Socialization Bonus: Like many monster collecting games, trading is necessary to catch 'em all and Pokémon took a step further by having four Pokémon (Machoke, Graveler, Kadabra, Haunter) to only evolve when traded. There is no other reason for this to be implemented other than to encourage trading among players.
Spiteful A.I.: Wild Electrode and Graveler will use suicide attacks like Self Destruct and Explosion for no real reason other than to cripple your Mons. Trainers using these Mons will do the same thing in battle, even if it's their last Mon and causes them to lose.
Standard RPG Items: Pretty much every one listed on the trope page has an equivalent here.
Take That: When starting a new game, before entering the characters' names, the player's name is initialized to NINTEN as a Shout-Out to MOTHER, and the rival's name to SONY.
Teaser Equipment: The bicycle. When you first arrive in Cerulean City, it is on display for 1 million Pokédollars (one Pokédollar more than your carrying capacity). After advancing the plot in the next town, you get a voucher to acquire one for free.
Too Awesome to Use: Most famously, the Master Ball. It will catch any Pokemon without fail, but you only get one. To a lesser extent, rare healing items like Max Revives and PP restoring items like Ethers and Elixirs also qualify. You can get more than one of each, but they cannot be purchased and exist only in a limited number.
Updated Re-release: As mentioned above, the international "Red" and "Blue" versions are actually based on the updated game engine of Japan's updated rerelease, importing the version differences from the original Japanese Red and Green versions. Eight versions of the original game were eventually released:
Red Version and Green Version were the original pair, released in Japan.
Blue Version was the original "third game", updated from the first pair, also released only in Japan.
Red Version and Blue Version were the first two games released internationally, based on again-updated code from Japanese Blue and the differences between the original Red and Green.
Yellow Version was released both in and outside Japan, updated yet again from Red and Blue as the third game internationally and the fourth in Japan.
FireRed Version and LeafGreen Version were later released on the Game Boy Advance as updated versions to match Ruby and Sapphire.
Warp Whistle: The Fly ability, outside of battle, will allow you to return to any Pokemon center you've already visited. It can only be used outdoors, however.
We Can Rule Together: The Rocket grunt at the end of Cerulean Bridge wishes to recruit you into Team Rocket after seeing you battle. .
Where It All Began: The map is naturally designed to send you back to your hometown of Pallet after you get the Volcano Badge; additionally, Viridian City, the first town you arrive at after Pallet, is both the location of the 8th Gym, and where the road to the Indigo Plateau starts.
Whip It Good: The Ace Trainers (then named Cooltrainers), Tamers, Rocket Grunts, Cue Balls, and Sabrina◊ have whips.
This is actually thought to be a holdover from the old "Capsule Monsters" concept, where the trainer would've been more active in combat and taming would've worked differently. It's quite noticeable how nearly all the whips disappear from Gen II on, Sabrina's most conspicuously - only "Tamers" retain them in FRLG, and that trainer class vanishes after the Gen 1 games.
Canon Discontinuity: Pretty much every change in this version was ignored by Pokémon Gold and Silver, which instead derived everything Kanto-based from Red and Green aside from Red's team (Pikachu + three starters). Fire Red and Leaf Green also incorporate very little of Yellow's gameplay.
Granted, this version was based on the anime rather than what would become the canon of the game series...
Canon Immigrant: A few characters from the anime can be found in early routes, like AJ and Giselle. Melanie and a much nicer Damien show up to give you Bulbasaur and Charmander as well. Officer Jenny and Nurse Joy show up too. And, of course, there's Jessie and James, who are recurring enemies. Because of game mechanics, though, they aren't named.
In the original games, Metapod didn't learn Harden upon evolutionnote It did at Level 1, but it was impossible to get ANY Pokémon at that level back then (and Caterpie didn't evolve until Lv. 7, making it plainly impossible), barring Mew glitch, and there was no move relearner to teach it the move, so only wild Metapod could learn it; you had to catch another one yourself if you really wanted that move. Ash's Caterpie, when it evolved into Metapod, learned Harden in the anime, and so too does yours in Yellow version. This has stuck around in later games.
Convenient Weakness Placement: Those mentioned above from Red/Blue are still present, but more are added here. In particular, you can now catch a Mankey on Route 22 near Viridian City. The Fighting-type Mankey is extremely helpful when battling Brock, whose Rock/Ground-types are immune or resistant to all of Pikachu's moves.
Idle Animation: Pikachu will start to look around randomly if you leave your character alone for a while, or jump or spin around after you jump down a ledge and leave Pikachu above.
Koga the fifth gym leader suddenly tosses out a Level 50 Venomoth. Trainers and wild Pokemon nearby did not even come close to this standards at that point. Sabrina, Giovanni and the rival * his second-last encounter have Pokemon in their fifties as well, but at least the Kanto gyms can be challenged out of order after Brock, Misty and Koga so you can fight them last (doesn't help much due to the slow grinding speed of Gen 1 but still).
Because your starter is a Pikachu, you're likely going to have a much tougher time dealing with Brock than in Red and Blue. Fortunately, you can now catch a Nidoran and make it learn Double Kick much earlier than you could in those games. You also have the option to pick up a Mankey on Route 22. Both are there specifically for beating Brock.
In general, the NPCs took more advantage of TMs after largely relying on their Pokemon's natural learnsets in Red and Blue.
Wake-Up Call Boss: Surprisingly, Misty serves as the wake-up call here. Several nifty tricks were added to help you get past Brock (which is necessary, as each of his mons are immune or resistant to everything a reasonably leveled Pikachu can throw at it by this point.) Most players will go into Cerulean City Gym with a spring in their step, ready to wipe the floor with Misty's Water-types using their juiced up Pikachu. They are in for a world of hurt, as Misty's Pokemon are ludicrously over-leveled. Her Starmie in particular has ridiculous numbers of hit points and can absorb 3+ super-effective Thundershocks while sweeping your entire team in one shot apiece.
Tropes used in FireRed and LeafGreen
Adult Fear: Lostelle's father is sick with worry that she hasn't returned home yet. You find her weeping, lost deep in a forest, being pursued by a wild Hypno.
Ascended Meme: Many new features and secrets seem to call back to the wild rumors that surrounded the original games. For instance, Bill granting you access to a new area (in this case, the Sevii Islands) and the ability to find something by the truck near the S.S. Anne.
Gambler-class trainers had their titles changed to gamer, leading to things like, "I'm a rambling, gaming dude!" That subverted rhyme aside, the change is less jarring considering that gambling is often referred to as "gaming" nowadays (i.e. Indian gaming, the Las Vegas Gaming Commission, etc.).
Lavender Town's Pokémon Tower had a possessed woman say "Give...me...your...all"; contrast with the original line, which is "Give...me...your...soul." This particular instance of Bowdlerization seems a bit unpredictable, as there's another woman whose line remains as "Give...me...blood." in all versions. The "give me your soul" line was mentioned on a Christian Fundamentalist website as an example of how the game was Satanic. Perhaps this specific condemnation was common enough that the developers noticed it.
Console Cameo: Instead of updating the SNES in the player's bedroom from the original Red/Blue to a newer console, it is changed to an older one. (A NES to be specific.)
Crutch Character: As mentioned above, the Bug-types Butterfree and Beedrill still qualify. However, Butterfree gets an even bigger boost now thanks to its "Compound Eyes" ability. This makes its status effect inducing "powder" attacks significantly more accurate. It can now cripple opposing Pokemon with Paralysis and Poison more easily and put wild Pokemon to Sleep with greater success, making them easier to catch. The addition of this ability takes it from a crutch to near-Disc One Nuke territory.
Damn You, Muscle Memory: Players who rushed to the top floor of the Celadon Department Store to buy drinks for the thirsty guards will be disappointed since the guards in FRLG accept hot tea instead, which is obtained from an old lady in the building next to the Pokémon Center.
The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: Key items from Ruby and Sapphire, while unavailable via standard methods, have descriptions different than they were in Ruby and Sapphire. For example, the Scanner:
Due to the Dead: On Five Island, there is a memorial for a dead Onix nicknamed Tectonix. The Player can set down a lemonade next to the one that is already there. This earns gratitude from the Trainer next to you, and he gives you TM42 Facade as a thanks.
When it comes to the music, FireRed/LeafGreen are the only games post-Ruby and Sapphire not to have the Pokémart leifmotif introduced in the Hoenn games and the only post-Ruby and Sapphire games not to include the expanded form of the Hall of Fame theme introduced in Ruby and Sapphire. Even the remakes of Pokémon Gold and Silver had them retconned into the games (to the point where there's a GB Sounds equivalent of the Pokémart theme). It's also the only remakes to recycle the gym theme from the mainline generation games - all the other remakes either have their own remix of the theme (in the case of HeartGold/SoulSilver) or uses an updated version of the original game's incarnation (in the case of Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire).
The ability to teach your final form starter Pokémon Frenzy Plant, Blast Burn or Hydro Cannon to your starter Pokémon was introduced within these games. However, unlike in later generations, only the Kanto starters could learn them.
Extended Gameplay: After defeating the Elite Four, the Sevii Islands start opening more so than after Blaine was defeated. The islands are one of the few places in the third generation games where you can capture Johto (or Hoenn) Pokémon.
Forced Tutorial: Even more so than in the originals, and considering they were the first installments that's saying something. Professor Oak insists on explaining how a Pokémon battle works during your initial battle with your Rival, and before you even play the game, there are mandatory introductory screens showing you which buttons do what and telling you about the world of Pokémon in even greater detail than Professor Oak. It's understandable the game's producers simply wanted to help newcomers along, but come on.
One particularly egregious example occurs right in Pallet Town. A certain woman just has to show you what's written on a newly-placed sign near the lab, to the extent that you will not be able to leave Pallet Town unless you either read the sign or hear her recite what it says — and all it says is press Start to open the menu.
Fun With Palindromes: The passwords for the Rocket Headquarters on Five Island are "GOLDEEN need log" and "Yes, nah, CHANSEY".
Gameplay and Story Segregation: There's one ranger on Seven Island who claims that city trainers (meaning trainers from Kanto) "sure are tough". This is despite the fact that the Sevii Islands are the Extended Gameplay, so any trainers living on them are guaranteed to be inherently better than nearly any Kanto trainer.
Inconsistent Dub: Unlike most examples, the error is present in the Japanese version as well: the Karate King, who was nameless in Generation I like every other Black Belt, was named Kiyo (Nobuhiko in Japanese) in Generation II, in which most Trainers gained names. In the Generation III remakes of the former, which added names to previously nameless Trainers, he's named Koichi (Takenori in Japanese); however, the Generation IV remakes of the latter went back to using the correct name.
In the corner of Fuschia City is a young girl named "Charine", who self identifies as Koga's daughter in training. Janine, you mean?
Same case as the Karate King for some Bug Catchers, as well - one on Route 3 mentions that he saw you in Viridian Forest and then compliments you for beating him again if you fight him, but in every version of the Gen III remakes he has a different name from any of the Bug Catchers in the forest.
Last Disc Magic: These games started a trend of including a late-game move tutor who will teach your fully evolved starter (and only your fully evolved starter) an elemental version of Hyper Beam depending on your starter's type. In FR/LG, the tutor in question is located on the Sevii Islands which are inaccessible until you defeat Blaine, the 7th gym leader.
Mythology Gag: During the credits, the Generation 1 mascots are shown changing from the in-game sprites to poses they had on the Japanese boxart of their respective games.
No Name Given: The female player character doesn't have an official name. Most fans have settled on Leaf.
Now, Where Was I Going Again?: Resuming your saved game gives you a quick recap about some of the things you were doing before you saved and quit.
Pink Girl, Blue Boy: The speech text for most non-player characters is color-coded this way - males will have blue text and females will have red text.
Playable Epilogue: Upgrades the original games' End Game Plus into one. Cerulean Cave still opens the same way, but there are other changes as well. More of the Sevii Islands open up for exploration and you can start to catch Pokémon not native to Kanto.
Retcon: In the original versions, there were only 151 known Pokémon in the whole world. In the Game Boy Advance remakes, this was changed to there being only 151 Pokémon known to inhabit the Kanto region.
Which is a blatant lie itself. Until you get the National Dex, the game locks you out of Pokemon like Blissey or Crobat, both happiness-related evolutions of the Gen I Pokemon Chansey and Golbat respectively, simply to keep up the illusion.
Significant Anagram: "Tanoby" is an anagram of "botany" and the Tanoby Chambers are named after plants. The Japanese name is an anagram of Nanakusa and the chambers are named after Nanakusa-no-sekku.
Optional Stealth: If you run, you will draw the attention of most trainers. They will turn to the side you are about to pass them by and challenge you to a battle. Walking allows the player a chance to slip by them.
alternative title(s): Pokemon Red And Blue; Ptitleevcce3c2; Pokemon Red; Pokemon Blue; Pokemon Green; Pokemon Yellow; Pokemon Fire Red; Pokemon Leaf Green; Pokemon Red Blue And Yellow; Pokemon Fire Red And Leaf Green; Pokemon Fire Red And Leaf Green; Pokemon Red And Green; Pokemon Red Blue And Yellow; Pokemon Red Blue Green And Yellow; Pokemon Red Blue Green And Yellow; Pokemon Red; Pokemon Blue; Pokemon Green; Pokemon Yellow; Pokemon Fire Red; Pokemon Leaf Green