Video Game / Pokémon Stadium
aka: Pokemon Battle Revolution
A series of battle-focused console games in the Pokémon
series. They are all compatible with the corresponding handheld games in the series, though they can be played in a limited capacity without those games. Current games in the series are:
- Generation I (Nintendo 64)
- Pokémon Stadium (Japan): The first game in the series, which was only compatible with 42 out of the then-151 Pokémon; it was really just intended as a visual tool for tournaments, since those 42 were generally high-end competitive 'Mons, and wasn't intended to be a major consumer product. The sequel was out in Japan only a few months after Red and Blue were released in the US, and after their release in Europe, so this game was skipped in those regions in favor of the more complete sequel. Fans tend to refer to this as "Pocket Monsters Stadium" when needing to distinguish it from the commonly known US release.
- Pokémon Stadium: Called Pokémon Stadium 2 in Japan, it was fully compatible with the Game Boy games, including support for all the Pokémon, and was produced as a much more complete product after consumers clamored for something more in the wake of the very simplistic first release. It included several tournament levels, a Gym Leader Castle to battle the Gym Leaders from Red, Blue, Green and Yellow, the Kids Club to play minigames, a Pokémon Lab to manage the Pokémon and items on your games, including trading and transferring Pokémon between games and keeping them on the N64 cartridge, and the Game Boy Tower to play the Game Boy games on the TV through the Transfer Pak.
- Generation II (Nintendo 64)
- Pokémon Stadium 2: Called Pokémon Stadium Gold/Silver in Japan, it was compatible with all of the first generation games as well as the second-generation games, Gold, Silver, and Crystal. It included most of the same features as the original Stadium, plus others such as an in-game Mystery Gift and a Trainers' School area where one could learn basic and advanced game concepts and even fight puzzle-style training battles.
- Generation III (Nintendo GameCube)
- This generation got the Pokémon Colosseum games instead of new Stadium games. While they did include some elements of the Stadium games, and included the ability to wage battles between Game Boy Advance versions of Pokémon on the TV, they had their own stories and included less of the utility and tournament functions of the Stadium games. (The utilities were put into Pokémon Box.)
- Generation IV (Wii)
- Pokémon Battle Revolution: A Wii game, compatible with Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, HeartGold, and SoulSilver versions. Developed by Genius Sonority, the same team behind the Colosseum games. Not technically a Stadium game, but it counts here because of its return to the battle focus of those games- more so in fact, as it lacked the minigames and any sort of storage (which would end up in My Pokémon Ranch). Featured several different battle styles, Character Customization, and the ability to battle random opponents over the internet.
- Notably, Generation V completely lacked any kind of Stadium title - the online battling was now handled by the DS games themselves. This has continued into Generation VI and VII, with no Stadium-esque title announced for the Wii U, and with the storage utility, Pokemon Bank, being a separate app for the 3DS. With the main series handheld games now featuring high quality 3D graphics, it would seem that there would be little point to doing so.
These games include examples of:
- Action Bomb: The Super Nerd in Pokémon Stadium 1 uses an entire team of pokemon that use Self-Destruct or Explosion as his main strategy for Petit Cup and Gym Leader Castle. The male Rocket Grunt also uses this strategy in Pokemon Stadium 2's Gym Leader Castle. Both of them are aware of the self-destruct clause, and won't blow up their last pokemon though.
- Adaptation Dye-Job:
- Lt. Surge has sandy blond hair instead of bright blond.
- In Stadium 1 Erika has green hair instead of black.
- all lowercase letters: The names of the Cueball's Pokémon in Stadium 1.
- Announcer Chatter: Has its own section at the bottom.
- Artificial Stupidity: In the second game any Pokemon that knows Dynamicpunch will repeat this move until it hits once before using its other moves even if you have a ghost type out. Chuck is especially bad because each of his Pokemon knows this move making it nearly impossible to lose if you brought something like Gengar.
- Bald of Evil: The Gamblers in the first Stadium game. You know why they're evil.
- Battle Tops: A mini-game in Pokémon Stadium 2 is a battle between four Hitmontop with the goal of knocking the others out of the ring.
- Bowdlerize: Believe it or not, Nidoqueen's animation in the Japanese version is this◊.
- The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: The games are quite notorious for this:
- Chance is very strongly stacked in the computers favor. To name a few examples, unlike the player, the computer will have a much higher chance of a critical hit than normal, inaccurate moves like Dynamic Punch and Zap Cannon will strike you far more often than normal, status-affecting moves will have a much higher chance of inflicting a status on you, when the computer uses a move that increases their evasiveness, you'll almost never be able to strike them, even after it uses the move just once, if you manage to inflict a status move on your opponent, they will almost never be affected and they'll be able to attack far more than you despite the status. The worst part about all of this though is that it isn't even something that happens just in round 2. This happens very often in round 1, usually against the later gym leaders and the Elite Four, making the easier round 1 feel far harder than it should be at times.
- The computers' Pokémon have nicknames with numbers in them, otherwise impossible until Gen. III.
- A juggler in Koga's Gym in the first Stadium has his name highlighted in pink because his Slowbro knows Metronome, which is impossible without cheating.
- In Stadium, Mewtwo has infinite PP when you fight him. Granted, you're fighting him six against one, so it's hardly fair to throw stones...
- In the Pika Cup in the first game, some of the trainers have Pokémon that cannot be obtained at their level in that generation. For example, Hiker (Round 1) and Swimmer (Round 2) have a Seadra at level 15 and 17, respectively. The minimum level a Seadra can be legitimately obtained in Gen 1 is at level 20 in the Yellow version.
- There is also a large amount of trainers' Pokémon that have move combinations that are illegal and impossible to obtain. Should you attempt to use a Pokémon who knows a move they shouldn't, the game has a mechanism in place that prevents you from doing so. In other words, the game can cheat as much as it wants, but you're punished for it.
- Pokémon Stadium 2 goes the extra mile in cheating; all of the rentals are effectively useless. The AI has hacked movesets and hacked stats; the rentals available to you have stats that are about 10% lower than they should be and the evolved Pokémon know utterly useless attacks. Unevolved rentals know decent attacks, but have far more pitiful stats that render them even more useless than their evolved counterparts. It is pretty much impossible to make any progress in Pokémon Stadium 2 without using homegrown Pokemon, as long as they're not from a Yellow Version... the game is known to delete saved games on Yellow Versions.
- Bribing Your Way to Victory: Almost a staple in the series. It is nearly impossible to tackle many of the challenges and end game content with just rental Pokemon due to them having awful move sets and poor stats, thus you're encouraged to bring your own Pokemon that you raised yourself in another game.
- Confusion Fu: Metronome teams, which are a very common strategy of the Jugglers in many rounds. The Gamblers also uses this strategy in other Prime Cup rounds, whenever they are not using that other strategy.
- Com Mons: You're pretty much guaranteed to run into at least two or three trainers with a Wigglytuff, a Butterfree, or both per tournament in Battle Revolution.
- Convection Schmonvection: Battle Revolution's Magma Colosseum is set just above the lava of an active volcano. The weather can't even be sunny at the start of the battle to show for it.
- Crippling Overspecialization: The Tamer, who's main theme is using a team of one trick ponies, with very little coverage, poor variety, and less than 4 moves. The Juggler to a lesser extent, sometimes using only metronome.
- Critical Hit Class: The Tamer's favorite tactic, as the most common of his Crippling Overspecialization strategies. Giovanni's Persian is a particularly nasty example.
- Damn You, Muscle Memory!: Stadium was created before many of the changes from Pokémon Gold and Silver were introduced. This means that types aren't the same as in post-Gen 1 titles and that some moves work differently. For example, "Bite" is a Normal type move instead of a Dark type move.
- Double Knockout: Averted; Destiny Bond (if the user faints, so does the foe) fails in 1 on 1, while a trainer that uses a suicide move on their last Pokémon loses (even if they KO the foe's last Pokémon with it).
- Drama Queen: Most Pokémon take a few seconds to go through their fainting animation, rather than just collapse. Especially noticeable when compared to animations in X and Y.
- Easter Egg:
- If you import your starting Pikachu from Yellow to the Stadium games, it has Ikue Otani's voice acting like in the Anime (and the Super Smash Bros. series), rather than using the standard cry.
- In the first two Stadium games, a Pokémon with a certain pattern in its nickname (reversed syllables, one syllable followed or preceded by another word, etc.) changed the creature's color. It's pretty fun trying to figure out what patterns will cause what changes.
- Completing the Master Cup in the original with a Pikachu in your party will give the player an opportunity to make Pikachu learn Surf. When Pikachu uses Surf in the game, it will use a surfboard in the move animation, while its evolved form Raichu will ride on its tail. In Pokémon Yellow, the overworld Surfing sprite will change to Pikachu on a surfboard. It will also allow the player to play an Excite Bike clone called "Pikachu's Beach" in a house south of Fuschia City. As a Call-Back to this, in Battle Revolution, Surfing Pikachu can be unlocked as a Mystery Gift by completing the game.
- Emulation: The GB Tower in the first two games is essentially a Super Game Boy that uses the Transfer Pak to read your game save. Naturally it only works with Pokémon games, but it does allow you to quickly access ingame features, training and such. Completing certain goals will even unlock the ability to speed up the emulation.
- Expy: The male protagonist from Stadium looks a lot like Red's classic design except with a "P" sign on his hat and brown hair. The female protagonist introduced in Stadium 2 looks a lot like Kris from Pokémon Crystal except with brown hair and different clothes.
- Final Boss:
- Mewtwo in Stadium 1. Yes, just Mewtwo, and you get to use up to 6 Pokémon in Anything Goes rules to try and take it out. This more than anything illustrates Mewtwo's standing in Gen I. And if that isn't hard enough for you, in round 2 it has maximum stats and uses Amnesia.
- Silver in Stadium 2 ups the ante, on paper, by throwing in Lugia and Ho-oh with Mewtwo. Unfortunately, the former two have shared weaknesses, the latter was (mercifully) nerfed, and it's still 6 against 3. There's plenty of room for Self-Imposed Challenges, though.
- Flawless Victory: Completing a match without losing a Pokémon gives you a continue. Building them up the early matches is quite helpful.
- Flying Seafood Special: Some water Pokémon summoned into battle fall into this, especially the fish-like ones, who float aboveground as if they were in an aquarium (except, of course, for Magikarp...).
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: "Questionable" animations of some Pokémon, such as Flareon's butt-shaking taunt (which is even more risque if animal psychology is applied) when idle and Nidoqueen's body-swaying taunt. Magnemite's and Magneton's fainting animation, where they go into a spasm then fall apart. As noted above, Nidoqueen's animation is, in fact, a Bowdlerized version of her original Japanese animation◊.
- Good Thing You Can Heal: The Scientist in the Prime Cup sometimes specializes in moves like Recover, Rest, and Leech Seed. He is fairly tame in round 1 Great Ball, with some minor annoyances like Porygon, though Reflect Chansey can be a right pain, but in Round 2 Prime Cup Ultra ball, he is possibly the most annoying enemy, as he has Starmie, Alakazam, and Porygon with Recover, Chansey with Softboiled, Snorlax with Rest, and Exeggutor with Leech Seed, all with buffed stats and Pokémon compared to Round 1.
- Ground Punch: This is how Earthquake is animated: the user punches the ground and ripples travel out to break the ground under everyone else.
- Instant Awesome: Just Add Dragons!: The Old Man/Gentleman from the first game's Poke Cup really loves the Dragonite Family, and will always use Dragonair in the Great Ball division, and Dragonite in the Ultra Ball division, but may alternate with another level 55 in the Master Ball. In the Petit Cup, one of the Pokemaniac's strongest pokemon is a Dratini. Strangely subverted with Lance in Round 1, who only uses Dragonair (Probably due to not evolving at level 50, though Stadium 2 plays it straight) and averted with Lance in Round 2, at least with the genuine typing.
- Irony: For all the underleveled, illegally obtainable fully evolved pokemon in Pika Cup, such as Dugtrio, Electrode, Tentacruel, Muk, Golem, Machamp, Dragonair, Dewgong, as well as the Dragon Rage users in such a low level setting, the most powerful, insurmountably difficult, and mercilessly destructive enemy pokemon you fight in Pika Cup is not only legally obtainable, but one of the easiest pokemon to acquire; a Level 20 Alakazam with Psychic and Thunder Wave. While some of the "illegally obtained" pokemon can be challenging for rentals, the Level 20 Alakazam is the only pokemon in the entire cup that is genuinely impossible to beat with Rental Pokemon barring miraculous freeze hax that you'll only have one chance at pulling off or else you die or getting lucky with the strongest rentals like Starmie. The guides even recommends the player to just use the transfer pack, or pray that you face the level 20 Dragonair instead.
- Kabuki Sounds: Various ones used in the Sushi Go-Round and Clear-Cut Challenge minigames.
- Luck-Based Mission: The "Challenge" Cup, which randomly generates your team (NOT your opponent's).
- Mythology Gag: The Gym Leaders' castle sections reflect a certain Ascended Extra pair from the anime. Brock in the first game (Round 1) has a Vulpix and has a Forretress in the second game. Misty in the second game (Round 1) has a Togetic. Forretress is an odd case of foreshadowing, as Brock's Pineco hadn't evolved yet in the anime at the time Stadium 2 was released.
- Nintendo Hard: For both Stadium and Stadium 2, which are considered to be the hardest Pokemon games in the series, easily surpassing future Battle Tower or other simulations in terms of difficulty, especially in Round 2. Computer Is a Cheating Bastard complaints non-withstanding, you can’t use healing items like in the original games, the computer can make very accurate predictions, using the correct moves or switch ins, and many enemies utilize various strategies and type coverage. You can bring six pokemon, but you can only use 3 for a 3 vs 3, which is ironically more fair than Battle Tower in that aspect. With duplication clause, Gym Leader castle won’t use a complete team of their specialty type, such as using Gengar and Dragonite, however, they usually always use their signature pokemon alongside wildcards, and tends to have good stats and movepools. If you don't have a transfer pack, you will have to settle for rentals, that are often inferior to many enemies.
- No Fair Cheating:
- The game highlights moves a Pokémon shouldn't learn in pink. This becomes most obvious in Generation 1, when trading from Generation 2, where Pokemon can learn moves they can't in earlier games, so it'll use the pink highlights even if the Pokemon is, in fact, completely legit. Fortunately, this doesn't actually affect your ability to battle.
- Battle Revolution prevents the uploading of anything it reads as hacked-it turns the hack into a bad egg. Potentially annoying if it's legit but has a special event move that makes the game think it's hacked.
- No Name Given: The protagonists of the Stadium games are near featureless and can't even be named.
- Obvious Rule Patch: The games introduced the standard clauses that typically get used in any "competitive" environment (in game or in versus battles). These include the Sleep clause (only one Pokémon a team can be asleep outside of self-inflicted sleep, such as with the Rest move), the Freeze clause (same as Sleep clause but with frozen solid), the Uber clause (Mewtwo, Mew, Ho-oh, Lugia and Celebi are banned) and the Double KO clause (see double KO). Without these, battles could get very boring. Pokémon Battle Revolution removed the legendary ban, though they were banned in online play for a while due to a glitch.
- Off-Model: Pokémon Stadium introduced 3D models for the first 251 Pokémon. Given the Nintendo 64's hardware limitations, they looked great. However, these models continued to be used from Colosseum up through Battle Revolution, which caused the lower-res textures and lower-polygon models of the first 251 to stick out against the better-constructed Pokémon models from the third and fourth generations (probably most noticeable with Charizard's paper-thin wings).
- Old Save Bonus:
- The games are all very difficult without one of the handheld games, as the rental Pokémon usually have very poor movesets. Using a handheld game makes each game much easier.
- There's also a few Secret Characters in Pokémon Stadium 2's minigames that are unlocked if the player has a certain Pokémon in their party or box.
- If the player has a Crobat, the player will be able to play as Crobat in Gusty Golbat.
- If the player has a Scizor, the player will be able to play as Scizor in ClearCut Challenge.
- If the player has a Girafarig, the player will be able to play as Girafarig in Furret's Frolic.
- If the player has an Omanyte, the player will be able to play as Omanyte in Tumbling Togepi.
- If the player has an Igglybuff, the player will be able to play as Igglybuff in Streaming Stampede.
- If the player is using Pokémon Yellow, the player will be able to play as Pikachu in Pichu's Power Plant.
- Psychic Powers: Sabrina from Gym Leader Castle, and the Psychic trainer from Poke Cup, both of whom uses psychic type pokemon and are especially powerful in Stadium.
- Pstandard Psychic Pstance: Mewtwo does this when attacking.
- Save-Game Limits: While the Nintendo 64 games only have one save file that accommodates all your games, Battle Revolution has four save slots, each one synced to one DS game. Which means that if you own all five games in Generation IV, one will miss out on playing PBR.
- Mewtwo's animation when it uses Psychic and various other attacks looks suspiciously similar to the Kamehameha motion. Whoever animated his motion had taken a definite stance on the "Giegue or Frieza?" argument that Mewtwo's appearance has so often sparked.
- Hitmonlee's faceplant when KO'd looks an awful lot like the Flair Flop.
- SUBMISSION GOING DOOOOWWNN!!
- Stock Footage:
- Pay close enough attention to every game in the series and you'll notice that they only ever create new models for the new Pokémon. Even in the latest games, Gen I Pokémon still have the same animations as they did in the first Stadium game.
- Despite using the same models, Battle Revolution offered texture and special effects updates to the older Pokémon.
- Sudden Name Change: Several Trainer Classes in the two Stadium games. For example, Youngsters are called "Lads".
- Surfer Dude: If a Pikachu knows Surf (which is obtainable in each of the games), a special animation will play if it uses the move, which consists of it riding a wave on a surfboard.
- Trash Talk: Almost all of the Stadium 2 opponents will taunt you in some way, shape, or form. (The biggest exception being Red.)
- Triumphant Reprise: the final boss theme from Revolution is an orchestral variant of Gateway Colosseum, the first arena in the game.
- The Unreveal: If Diglett or Dugtrio somehow manages to use the move "fly", they'll be animated as if their bodies are somehow made up of only their heads and the gravel around them (as this video demonstrates).
- Up to Eleven: One of the announcer's lines in Battle Revolution uses this exact phrase.
- Versus Character Splash: Before each battle in both Stadium games, Colosseum, XD, and Battle Revolution, you'll see who you get to face and their Pokémon. You and your Pokémon are also shown. Averted in the main story modes of Colosseum and XD.
- Vocal Evolution: The three Stadium games use more realistic sounding noises than the digitized cries of the handheld games. This was stopped with Colosseum.
- Wake-Up Call Boss: In Stadium 2's Johto Gym Leader Castle, Jasmine of the Olivine Gym serves as the wake-up call. She will switch out her Pokémon to get the advantage on you, and her team is more varied compared to previous trainers and Gym Leaders. If you plan/react wrongly to Jasmine's switching, she will have the advantage and can defeat you. Though if you anticipate and react to her switching correctly, she can be pretty easy especially if you exploit her team's weaknesses. Jasmine basically reminds you that your future opponents can switch their Pokémon on you to give themselves the advantage over you.
- Westminster Chimes: Used at the beginning of the "Clefairy Says" minigame in the first game, and for battles in Earl's Academy in the second.
The announcer has unique chatter for the following:
- Broken Record: One-shot an opponent's Pokémon at the beginning of a match, and you might get these three lines in succession:
"A mighty blow from the word 'Go'!"
"TAKEN DOWN ON THE WORD 'GO'!!"
"This is a wild one from the word 'Go'!"
- Captain Obvious:
- "The Pokémon are entirely different types!"
- "OH! It's [insert Pokémon name here]!"
- Continue Your Mission, Dammit!:
- "The trainer hasn't issued an order. What's the matter, trainer?"
- "They're staring each other down."
- "They're eying each other warily."
- Critical Hit: From the Stadium series: "Nailed the weak spot!"
- Curb-Stomp Battle: "It was casually cast aside." (defeat a foe in one hit with a NVE move)
From Stadium 2: "Taken down with one hit, that was just too quick."
Also from Stadium 2: "Is there anyone that can stop this incredible Pokémon force?"
- Death of a Thousand Cuts: "Oh! It's finally taken down!"
- How Much More Can He Take?: From Stadium 2 where the last surviving Pokémon on each side wittle their HP down to critical levels:
"This has turned into one wild, roller-coaster ride."
- Incredibly Lame Pun: The Revolution announcer likes to make these depending on the Pokemon and/or moves that were just used. These are just a few examples you'll hear:
- (When there's 2 Ghost/Ice/both Pokemon on the field): "Is it just me, or is it getting a little chilly in here?"
- (When being KO'd by a burn): "It's all burned up now!"
- (After an Electric move was used): "The air in the Colosseum is tense and charged!"
- Irony: "Such irony ... Its own teammate was the only one to go down!" Earthquaking with a weak partner while both opponents are using Protect will do that.
- Large Ham Announcer:
- The Stadium 1/2 announcer is very dramatic:
"OH!! It's [Pokemon name]!"
"RIDE THAT SURF!"
"TAKEN DOWN ON THE WORD GO!!!"
"IT'S A ONE-HIT WONDER!"
"THAT WAS BRUTAL!!!"
- The Battle Revolution announcer gets worked up a lot:
"RRRRIPPED BY ROAR OF TIME!"
"IMMOLATED BY BLAST BURN"
"JUDGEMENT HAS BEEN DEALT!"
- Never Say "Die": Averted. Occasionally the announcer will mention that a Pokémon is "about to die" if you send it out while their HP is low.
- No Pronunciation Guide:
- "OH! It's Niddorun Male!"
- "OH! It's Eekins!"
- "OH! It's Raychu!"
- One-Hit KO: "Taken down in one hit!" "It's a one-hit wonder!"
- Senseless Sacrifice: "It was a heroic move, sacrificing itself like that, but it was the only one to go down!"
- Standard Status Effects:
Toxic/Poison (Stadium 2): "The poison will steadily weaken the victim!"
Burn (Stadium 2): "Oh! It got burned!"
Paralyze (Stadium 1): "Oops, it's paralyzed!" "It's paralyzed on the spot!"
Fainted (Stadium 1): "Waah! Going down!"
Attract (Stadium 2): "Hey, hey, it became attracted to the opponent!"
Sleep (Stadium 2): "It's fast asleep and can't be moved!"
Confuse (Stadium 2): "Oh no, it attacked itself!"
Freeze (Stadium 1): "It's frozen rock-solid!"
Curse (Stadium 2): "A curse was cast!" "Oh, it's been cursed!"
- That's Gotta Hurt: Usually preceded by an "Ooh!"
- What the Hell, Player?:
- "What would make it attack its OWN TEAMMATE?" In Battle Revolution.
- If said teammate actually faints from the attack:
"The Blue/Red Corner loses a Pokemon to an attack from its OWN TEAMMATE! What's going on here?!"
- You Can Barely Stand:
- "One looks raring to go, but the other appears weak!"
- "It's barely hanging on!" in Battle Revolution.