Video Game / Pokémon Sun and Moon

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1996. 1999. 2002. 2006. 2010. 2013.
And in 2016, it all comes together in an all-new Pokémon adventure!

Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon are the first games in the Seventh Generation of the main Pokémon game series, which were released for the Nintendo 3DS.

Sun and Moon take place in the Alola region, based on the US State of Hawai'i, one of the most ecologically diverse places on Earth. The games begin when a family moves to Alola, and a new trainer sets out on an adventure across the four islands that make up the region. The games mark a major shift in some of the series conventions, such as including a Fairy Companion in the form of the Rotom Pokédex, more realistic graphics instead of the stylized caricatures which were used prior, the introduction of new variations on old Pokémon, and the addition of Z-Moves, which allow for any Pokémon to release a powerful attack based on a single type, but can only be performed once per battle.

The existence of the games was leaked via a trademark registration website in Europe, and were announced the next day on the February 27, 2016 (the franchise's 20th Anniversary) via Pokémon Direct. They were released for most of the world on November 18, 2016, and delayed until November 23, 2016 for Europe. Sun and Moon retain the multilingual support of Pokémon X and Y, rather than all languages being on separate game carts, adding simplified (Mandarin) Chinese and traditional Chinese to the seven languages available in X and Y, although as before, choosing a specific language locks the game to that language until saved data is deleted.

  • The first announcement trailer for the games can be viewed here.
  • The Pokémon Direct presentation focusing on the games can be viewed here.
  • The first gameplay trailer for the games can be viewed here.
  • The official website for the games can be visited here.

Not to be confused with the first set of Robopon games, which had Sun, Moon, and Star versions.

On June 6th 2017, Game Freak and Nintendo revealed Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon for the Nintendo 3DS, which is a significantly Darker and Edgier alternate retelling of Sun and Moon with different Pokémon available, including new Solgaleo and Lunala forms for Necrozma.
Spoiler Warning: Pokémon Sun and Moon is very popular and contains lots of spoilers here and its subpages. Due to this, it is recommended to have the spoiler view turned off if you don't want to be spoiled. This game has many plot twists and surprises, and most spoilers are marked. Some of them are unmarked, however. You Have Been Warned.

Tropes that Pokémon Sun and Moon provide:

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    # to A 
  • 3/4 View: Sun/Moon are the first handheld games to fully avert this, bringing the camera down to proper third-person perspective. This being said, the camera is still situated in a way that evokes the camera style of the previous installments.
  • Artificial Atmospheric Actions: The Rotom Dex does this all the time. Often, it'll have a single line of dialogue for the specific area in the story you're currently supposed to be at, regardless of whether or not you're currently following the story or just catching mons and participating in sidequests. it'll repeat this line every time the game loads like a broken record. Once you beat the game's main storyline it repeats the same few lines for the rest of the entire endgame. Which is ironically, very immersion breaking.
  • Abusive Parents: Lusamine to Lillie and Gladion. Mostly the emotional variety though there is some physical behaviour in there as well.
  • Absurdly Youthful Mother: The protagonist's mother jokes that she could probably pass for a child to take on the Island Challenge.
  • According To My Calculations: The Rising Star at the Battle Buffet seems to choose his dishes this way, going by his dialogue. It's shown that he's not that wise, though, since he picks dishes at random just like other trainers at the counter, and his comment after losing is that he took calorie count into consideration for some reason.
  • Action Prologue: The game starts as it usually does (entering name and gender) but then goes completely off script, shifting to a cutscene where Lillie is being chased by mooks. Then, once you get to the first town, you have to rescue Lillie's Pokémon from attacking Spearow, only for both of you to be rescued by Tapu Koko. THEN you're given your Starter. (And the action gets more intense from there.)
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: In every game previous to this one, the Hiker Trainer Class has always been a rather rotund, middle-aged man; however, in the Alola region, the Hiker is younger and looks more like a buff Surfer Dude. Male swimmers are typically fit but otherwise homely looking fellows, whereas in Alola they're hunky, ruggedly handsome men who pose appropriately before battle. On the other hand, the Gentleman went from a classy Quintessential British Gentleman type to a plump Hawaiian-Shirted Tourist on vacation.
  • Added Alliterative Appeal: Many Z-Moves have alliterative names, such as Continental Crush, Extreme Evoboost, Twinkle Tackle, and Shattered Psyche, considering that the "P" is silent. Several new regular moves are also alliterative, such as Baneful Bunker, Smart Strike, and Pollen Puff.
  • Adult Fear:
    • Trial Captain Kiawe is shown to have trouble saving up money so that he can afford to travel overseas to study dance. His sidequest in Sun involves him being downsized from a job at the Thrifty Megamart, and he challenges you to a Pokémon battle in an effort to help deal with his stress.
    • The Eevium-Z sidequest in the postgame highlights the sad reality of a group of trainers that have not aged gracefully, with several in dead-end jobs, a few more suffering from ill health and aging, and one of them having passed away and entrusted her Pokémon to her granddaughter.
    • A side event that you can witness involves a lady visiting the grave of her husband, who died in an accident that only his Machamp survived.
    • Team Skull's members are composed of runaways and failed Trial-goers, the trainers who made some bad life choices in their childhood and couldn't grow up gracefully.
    • Gladion has been living alone in a motel for the past two years after having run away from an abusive mother and working as a hired gun for a gang just to try to make ends meet. It's strongly implied that he's not paid well enough to live off of.
  • Affectionate Nickname:
    • Professor Kukui refers to the protagonist as "cousin."
    • Molayne calls Sophocles "Soffy". Sophocles in turn calls Molayne "Big Mo".
    • Hau calls Hala, his grandfather, "Tutu", and the protagonist's mother "auntie".
    • Lillie calls her Cosmog "Nebby".
    • Acerola calls Nanu "Uncle", though she's not actually his niece.
    • The use of familial terms like "cousin", "uncle", and "auntie" to refer to friends is actually a very common practice in Hawaii, due to the cultural perception of close friends being an extended family of sorts.
    • Harper and Sarah call their older sister Lana "Sissy".
  • All Deserts Have Cacti: The scenery of the desert during encounters shows Saguaro cactus. Hawaii does have cacti on some of the western sides of the islands, just not ones of this type.
  • Aloha, Hawaii!: The new region is called Alola and is based on the American state of Hawaii, the fourth state to receive representation in the franchise. The first was Arizona in Pokémon Colosseum and Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness and the second and third were New York and New Jersey in Pokémon Black and White and its sequel. The four islands are based on each of Hawaii's largest islands with geography to match, and each island is named according to its real-life counterpart's official color in Hawaiian.
  • Aluminum Christmas Trees: The Alola Sandshrew and Vulpix lines changed to thrive in snowy habitats...in a tropical region based on Hawaii. But what many don't know is that it actually can snow in Hawaii on the highest mountain peaks— which happen to be where these Ice Types are found.
  • Always Accurate Attack: Z-Moves do not perform accuracy checks, meaning they will always hit the target without fail. However, they'll still miss if the opponent is using a move like Fly or Dig.
  • Ambiguous Syntax: The Rotom Dex has a couple of moments wondering about location names:
    • Wondering if the Trainer School is a school for trainers or a school where trainers are teachers.
    • And if the Ruins of Hope are hopeful ruins or hope's end.
  • Americans Hate Tingle: In-Universe with Pyukumuku's popularity: only Alolans consider them cute, while most people from other regions hate them. There's even a job at the Hano Resort for chucking Pyukumuku back into the ocean, for Pyukumuku's benefit as well as the tourists'.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • The new interface shows which moves are effective, non-effective, or super-effective against the opposing Pokémon; how much a Pokémon's stats have been raised or lowered; and many variables that players had to memorize in previous games, such as non-volatile status effects (e.g. Leech Seed, Confusion, etc.), how long weather will last, and the presence and strength of entry hazards, among others. This makes it so players no longer have to memorize which buffs or debuffs are in effect or recall/look up type charts during battles. Really handy since many new Pokémon introduced in this generation don't look their type.note 
    • When using Z-Power, if more than one attack will use the unique Z-Move, but one will make the Z-Move more powerful than the other, the game will mark the Z-Move that has more power with a glowing filter.
    • NPCs that battle the player on sight now have visual cues that distinguish them from harmless NPCs. They have a battle pose, and if the player gets close, the screen gains a letterbox effect.
    • Hyper Training allows your Pokémon to gain stats equal to what its maximum IV would provide as long as that Pokémon is level 100.
    • When you catch a new Pokémon or try to take an Egg with a full party, you have the option to swap out a member of your team right there rather than having to backtrack to a PC. If you choose to send a new catch to the PC and it's holding an item, the game will inform you and give you the option to send the item to your bag before the Pokémon is boxed. If you choose to box an existing team member and it's holding an item, the game will let you take the item first. It also allows players to check what nature a Legendary Pokémon has immediately instead of having to wait through a cutscene first.
    • The Rotom Pokédex helps keep track of the player's objectives, which in previous games could sometimes be unclear. It also activates when a Pokémon is registered via trading or evolution, something it did not do in previous games, the information becoming more readily available.
    • The HM mechanic is gone entirely (though some of the combat-practical HMs are converted to TMs); it is replaced by Ride Pokémon.
    • The Rotom Pokédex and QR codes allow you to better track down wild Pokémon, down to the specific patch of grass they can appear in.
    • Your Bag has a "Free Space" pocket, returning from Black 2 and White 2, where you can register items you frequently use (like healing items or Repels) into one pocket for easy access, rather than having to scroll through the rest of the bag.
    • Pokémon Refresh lets you heal status effects without using up precious items or backtracking to a Pokémon Center, which also means you won't need as many items to begin with since many players wait until after they finish a battle before healing up.
    • Poké Beans can be "bought" by purchasing a drink at the cafe - the drink itself doesn't seem to actually have an effect other than receiving some beans from it. However, you can only receive 12 of them once a day.
    • In the previous games, if you evolve a Pokémon at a later level than normal, the Pokémon would miss out on any moves that the Pokémon would have learned upon evolution. In Sun and Moon, the Pokémon would instead learn the move after the evolution itself, permitting later evolution and earlier access to moves, given that the Pokémon learns stronger moves at earlier levels if the Pokémon is at an earlier evolutionary stage.
    • In a similar vein, the Move Relearner now teaches every move in a Pokémon's level-up learnset, instead of the ones it would have learned at an earlier level, meaning that you no longer have to put off an evolution until the Pokémon learns the move you want.note  This also has the added effect of, should you so desire, certain Pokémon (the ones that require specific moves) evolving almost instantly.
    • The "breeding" and "leveling" aspect of the Pokémon Day Care have been separated. The new "Nursery" is now solely a breeding facility, which lets you breed Poké without worrying about their movesets getting overwritten, which used to be a huge thorn in the player's side as they were trying to breed on Egg moves. As for where the leveling bit went, that's now a Poké Pelago feature, and allows up to eighteen boxed Pokémon to gain EXP at once while you're off doing your own thing - and that thing doesn't even need to be related to the game, as Poké Pelago runs in real time regardless of if you're playing or not. You can also donate Beans to accelerate the process further.
    • The Hidden Power checker is now in the breeding center, saving you a trip when breeding for a particular Hidden Power.
    • The Poké Pelago in general helps cut down on having to travel to four different locations to do some tedious things. It has a Berry Farm that no longer requires checking in to get the max yield, a cave that can get you various items, including evolution stones, a training area that can not only level up Pokémon but also their stat EVs, and finally a Hot Springs that not only helps raise Friendship of Pokémon but can slowly hatch Eggs as well.
    • The post-game allows a Fast-Forward Mechanic, by way of traveling to a parallel universe with a twelve hour difference, to bypass all the time-restricted events such as encounters and Zygarde cell collection.
    • You can take a job once per day to remove Pyukumuku from the beach and receive 20,000 Pokédollars, cutting down on the money grinding and having to go though the Battle Buffet and Elite four runs. In addition, you sometimes receive sellable items from some Preexisting Encounters and by fishing and breaking rocks.
    • The stats judge, instead of having to go to him for an evaluation each time, will instead install a judge feature onto the PC, allowing you to check all of your Pokémon at a glance from any PC in the game, saving you lots and lots of trips whenever you're hatching eggs. In addition, it now shows you all the values in a hexagon chart with labels, with "Best" being a maximum IV and "No Good" being a minimum IV. Unlocking this feature is still a Guide Dang It! task, though.note 
    • While the two versions of the game have their own version-exclusive Legendariesnote  they also grant the player the chance to obtain multiple copies of each exclusive, so trading for the one you're missing isn't anywhere near as painful.
    • You no longer have to go back to the PC to free up a space in your party just so you can take an egg from the Pokémon Nursery, whereas previous installments of the series forced you to free up a space in your party just so you could take one. Additionally, you have the option of sending the egg directly to the PC if you don't want to hatch it immediately instead of having it added to your party whether you like it or not or being forced to box one of your other Pokémon.
    • Due to how helpful the Move Reminder is and how scarce Heart Scales were in previous generations (forcing players to constantly hunt and catch Luvdisc in the hope that they would be holding one), Sun and Moon gives players a number of Heart Scales every time they visit the local Island restaurants and buy a meal. Unfortunately, this isn't pointed out to the player and they can easily run right past the restaurants as they're never required to enter them, thus being a bit of a Guide Dang It!. In addition, they can also be a tad pricey at times (with Sushi High Roller costing 4,000 per meal). Luckily, if the player defeated the local Kahuna, then once a day, the last item on each menu can be ordered for free, since the Kahuna pays for them. The Kahunas aren't interested in keeping their Heart Scales, so the player also receives double the amount than usual.
    • The Ability Capsule costs a whopping 200 BP in the 6th Generation for an item that only works once and doesn't give you access to Hidden Abilities. In these games, their price was reduced to 100 BP.
    • Unlike most Legendary Pokémon, Tapu Koko will reappear without defeating the Elite Four if the player defeats it for the first time as the player has to fight Tapu Koko before the credits roll.
  • Anti-Grinding:
    • Sun and Moon use the experience system from the 5th generation games, where Pokémon gain less experience upon defeating a Pokémon whose level is lower than the victor's, and more experience after beating a higher level Pokémon, making leveling up Pokémon harder than the previous games. The games do have the Gen VI version of the Exp. Share, which gives every party member that didn't fight half of the experience gained. You cannot rematch any of the Trainers, either, and there is currently no known way of doing so. Just like with X and Y, you can only rematch Trainers you meet in the restaurants, GAME FREAK Morimoto, and the Elite Four in the Pokémon League, making grinding that much harder.
    • That, however, is subverted by the Trials, as long as you do not complete them. If you leave in the midst of a Trial for whatever reason, be it being under-prepared by not training, having insufficient materials, etc., then that means you will lose any and all of your current progress you have made and will be forced to start from the beginning. However, in certain Trials, you cannot start over from the beginning since you cannot leave, but that does not mean you cannot grind. This special case applies to Kiawe's Trial; you can continue to play dumb, even though the answers are straightforward as broad daylight, if you still believe that you need to grind to anger the Alolan Marowak and fight them for Experience.
  • Anti-Rage Quitting: Like in Pokémon X and Y, disconnecting in Rating Battles will put a hit on your online ranking, and enough disconnections will disqualify you from online competitions. This time, however, Mega Stones missing from the normal game are given out as participation prizes. There is still no penalty for rage-quitting in Free Battles, however, and expect to see that happen at least occasionally.
  • Arc Number:
    • A whole category of them: The Ultra Beasts are themed around prime numbers. All of their base stats are prime numbers, and with the exception of 1, learn moves only at levels that are prime numbers. Necrozma, Cosmog, Cosmoem, Solgaleo, and Lunala also share this trait.
    • The number 4 also shows up a lot in the game. Four islands, Kahunas and Tapus, four trainers to battle at the Trainers School, four Pokémon in a Battle Royal, and the story arguably focuses on the journey of 4 characters (the player character, Hau, Lillie and Gladion). "Four [X]" is Kukui's Mad Libs Catchphrase as well. Fitting, as he plans to establish Alola's first Pokémon League.
  • Aristocrats Are Evil: Downplayed but still present as a theme. In Alola's past the four kingdoms of the islands fought in wars, even petitioning their island's Tapu into using their Guardian of Alola powers to fight for them. The destruction that was wrought led the Tapu to remove themselves from being so involved in human affairs. Presumably they were dethroned around the same time, if the local Olympus Mons viewed as guardian deities removed their support. Furthermore, their pampering of the Normal-type Meowth led to the line developing into Dark-types (known as Evil in Japan) and Trial Captain Acerola, their descendant, is a Ghost-type trainer (though she is a very sweet and noble character).
  • Armor-Piercing Attack:
    • Attacking Z-Moves bypass protection moves like Protect and Baneful Bunker, although the damage dealt is quartered.
    • Psychic Fangs works like Brick Break, destroying Light Screen/Reflect/Aurora Veil and then damaging the target.
    • Darkest Lariat, Incineroar's signature move, ignores the target's Defense and Evasion stat changes.
    • Moves used by Pokémon with the Mold Breaker Ability are not affected by the target's Ability. Sunsteel Strike and Moongeist Beam, the signature moves of Solgaleo and Lunala respectively, have a built-in Mold Breaker effect.
  • Art Evolution: A subtle one, but now everyone has different sizes in the overworld, rather than have almost everybody the same chibi-size.
  • The Artifact: Bluk and Pinap Berries can be obtained from the employee giving out free Berries in the Thrifty Megamart, despite the fact that they're completely useless. They even retain their description from Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire, in which Pokeblocks are brought up, which Alola does not have. Hilariously, they also cannot be traded.
  • Artificial Brilliance: Some of the Totem battles have great battle strategies.
    • Totem Wishiwashi's next summon is an Alomomola, which can use Heal Pulse on Wishiwashi when its HP is low so it can go back into School forme at the end of the turn.
    • Totem Salazzle summons its basic form Salandit, and gets the brutal Combination Attack of Toxic, which badly poisons the target, Venom Drench, which lowers both offense stats and speed of a poisoned Pokémon and Venoshock, which doubles its attack power (from 65 to 130) if the target is poisoned. It's not hard for this to sweep an unprepared team. Steel-types will not save you here, as Salazzle and Salandit's Corrosion ignores Steel-type immunity to poisoning, and Salazzle knows Flame Burst to melt it down.
    • Totem Lurantis holds a Power Herb to make its first Solar Blade a 1-turn attack. It can also summon a Trumbeak that has Rock Blast to eliminate Bug, Flying and Fire-types that may threaten it. Take care of the Trumbeak, and it would then send a Castform. This might sound confusing, until you realize it can use Sunny Day to make Solar Blade a 1-turn attack again and boost the healing capacity of Synthesis.
    • Totem Vikavolt has a Charjabug as a partner — Charjabug's ability of Battery boosts Vikavolt's already high Special Attack, something the two are said to do in official lore. Subverted, because all of the Totem Vikavolt's offensive attacks are physicalnote , meaning that Charjabug's Battery boost will be useless on it. Totem Vikavolt holds a Occa Berry, which reduces super-effective damage from Fire-type moves.
    • Totem Kommo-o will summon a Scizor as its second partner after the first, Hakamo-o, is dealt with; since Kommo-o has a double weakness to Fairy-type moves and Dragon-type moves have no effect on Fairy Pokémon, Scizor is the perfect counter to anyone who would bring a Fairy-type Pokémon to the battle. Totem Kommo-o also carries Flash Cannon to deal with Fairy-type Pokémon itself. In addition, it may use Protect on the first turn to protect itself from attacks and it can summon its ally with little to no risk. And it holds Mental Herb so it will heal from any move-binding effect once.
    • When fought as the Final Boss, Professor Kukui proves his chops as a researcher specializing in Pokémon attacks. On his first turn, he sends out Lycanroc, which will use Stealth Rock if not defeated quickly. Later on, his Braviary can make your life hell by repeatedly using Whirlwind to drag your team across the rocks and whittle their health down. Of course, this can be easily remedied by knocking Braviary out, unless the player's team isn't up to snuff, that is...
    • A number of AI trainers can now switch Pokémon if their current one isn't doing much, which they may use to try and take the player by surprise. Also, instead of bringing out their Pokémon in order, they may instead choose one out of their team that would have a type advantage against yours.
  • Artificial Stupidity:
    • The AI doesn't know how most abilities work. For example, a Hypno will try over and over to put the player's Komala to sleep, despite its Comatose ability making it immune to major status conditions.
    • Kukui will regularly have his Magnezone blast your Pokémon with Electric attacks, even if it would hurt it in turn...like, say, a non-Ground Alolan Marowak with Lightning Rod. He will wise up and switch out at some point, however.
    • The AI seems to like using Pain Split far more than necessary without taking into account the actual HP of either Pokémon, resulting in situations where the AI hurts their own Pokémon and heals that of the player.
    • The AI is unaware that Misty Terrain now prevents confusion, resulting in some opponents wasting turns trying to inflict it.
    • If Hau ends up with a Primarina, he may end up targeting your Pokémon with its Z-Move (Oceanic Operetta) when he's your partner in the Battle Tree. This is due to Sparkling Aria being a Herd-Hitting Attack that's also tagged as a support move because it heals burns, which confuses the AI since Oceanic Operetta is a single-target move.
    • Hau in general just makes some downright questionable choices. During a battle where he starts with Alolan Raichu against two Water/Psychic Pokémon, he may elect to spam Psychic rather than the super-effective Thunderbolt.
    • In the Battle Royal, some opponents may gang up on you and use not very effective moves repeatedly, even if you heavily resist them, such as opponents using Psychic on something like a Mega Metagross, which 4x resists it. This tends to happen most in the higher ranks when they tend to put their biggest priority on finishing you off.
    • From the Battle Tree, there's a particular Florges with Misty Terrain and Grassy Terrain. However, the AI will never settle on which terrain they want, causing Florges to do nothing but keep using a terrain move to replace a different terrain that she already activated.
  • Artistic Age: Zig-zagged with the returning characters. Red and Blue look visibly older than they do in preceding generations, but Wally (who is around their age, considering generations I and III take place at around the same time) looks barely older than he does in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire.
  • Ascended Extra: Anabel, the Battle Tower's Salon Maiden from Pokémon Emerald, returns in the post-game as Looker's boss to help you hunt down the Ultra Beasts. She's apparently a "faller" from another dimension, having come through a wormhole similar to the ones the Ultra Beasts came out of.
  • Ascended Meme:
    • One possible Poké Finder comment claims "7.8/10 Too much water."
    • When the player reaches Kukui's lab for the first time, he can be heard shouting "My body is ready!"
    • GAME FREAK took notice of how players will run back and forth on straightaway routes to hatch eggs, and an NPC on Route 6 (Sun and Moon's straightaway route) will lampshade how there are always people stampeding back and forth to do it.note 
  • Ascetic Aesthetic: Each of the Aether Foundation's bases of operation is decorated the same way. Their headquarters, Aether Paradise, is an entire artificial island made of Ascetic Aesthetic.
  • Attention Whore: The Totem Beast of the sixth Trial seems to fit the description. To complete the trial, you have to find it and take its picture, and to do that, you have to snap pictures of the ordinary Pokémon to draw it out - it really likes having its picture taken. (Ironic, seeing as it's a Ghost.) Then again, it is a Mimikyu, and all Mimikyu wants is the love and attention Pikachu gets.
  • Attract Mode: Just like Pokémon X and Y before it, if you don't press start fast enough, it'll show an interesting little dance animation, and then go into this mode.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking:
    • Kahunas are the leaders of their respective islands, and the most powerful trainers on said islands.
    • The Captains who orchestrate the Trials don't battle the player during said Trials, but there are a few opportunities to do so at other times, and they're pretty good, too.
    • Totem Pokémon are Minion Masters that summon weaker, related Pokémon during their battles. As one of the final challenges in their islands, they're no slouch themselves.
    • After you become the Pokémon League champion, you get to pull off one of these. Unlike other games, where the old champion remains the champion even after you beat them, you get to defend your title as champion.
    • Several post-game bosses too. Principal Akusa heads the Trainer's School, and is pretty tough, while Anabel (Looker's boss) will flatten you if you're unprepared for the battle, her Pokémon are not only strong, but her team is diverse and well-balanced.
  • Automatic New Game: Unlike previous entries, starting the game without an existing save on the cart will bypass the title screen and immediately start initial setup and trainer customization before jumping straight to the prologue cutscene.

    B to D 
  • Babies Ever After: In the post-game, if you go to the Altar of the Sunne/Moone with the cover legendary (Solgaleo in Sun or Lunala in Moon), you can travel to an alternate dimension with a 12-hour time difference and a culture that follows your Legendary's counterpart. Solgaleo and Lunala meet on the altar in that alternate world, and they generate a Cosmog for you.
  • Background Music Override: The music for Vast Poni Canyon and Mount Lanakila remain even if you use a Ride Pokémon.
  • Badass Teacher: Professor Kukui may fit the Trope even more than Sycamore from the previous game does; he fills the role of Champion of the Pokémon League, meaning he's the Final Boss of the main game, after the Elite Four.
  • Bag of Holding: The player's unlimited bag space is lampshaded by a bellhop at the Tide Song Hotel.
    "You can fit absolutely anything inside of a Trainer's Bag, huh! If it was me, I'd sure like to tuck myself in a Bag and tag along on someone's adventure!"
  • Balance Buff:
    • Several Pokémon receive some permanent stat boosts just like in Pokémon X and Y. Others gain access to moves that they can't learn in previous generations, such as Dodrio now learning Swords Dance and Jump Kick.
    • Weak Armor now sharply raises the owner's Speed instead of just raising its Speed by one stage.
    • Leech Life's Power is increased from a measly 20 to a respectable 80.
    • Fell Stinger's Power is increased from 30 to 50. In addition, instead of sharply raising the Pokémon's Attack stat after defeating an opponent with Fell Stinger like how it did in Generation VI, it drastically raises its Attack stat (+3).
    • Battle items such as X Attack now sharply raise a Pokémon's stat.
    • The Figy, Wiki, Mago, Aguav, and Iapapa Berries now heal 1/2 of the holder's max HP when eaten, up from 1/8.
    • Misty Terrain can also prevent confusion now.
    • Super Potions now heal up to 60 HP instead of 50.
    • The Lure Ball, Net Ball, Repeat Ball, and Nest Ball all had their capture rates improved.
    • The Power items now increase a Pokémon's Effort Points by 8 instead of 4.
    • When a Pokémon Mega Evolves, the game checks for the Pokémon's new Ability and Speed during that turn, not the turn after. For most Mega Evolutions, like Mega Beedrill and Mega Diancie, this is a big boost, as they no longer have to put up with their low Speed on the first turn. This is a Nerf for some others though—see below.
  • The Battle Didn't Count: A heroic example. Some battles, such as the one with Hau upon first arriving at Ula'Ula Island and the battle with Lusamine at Aether Paradise will permit you to lose and still continue on with the game's story, just losing out on the experience and money winning battles can provide. Same goes for the 4-way battle at Royal Avenue, with the characters reacting in the same way regardless of whether you win or lose. Not all battles will do this, however- most regular trainers, Kahunas, the fight with Lusamine in Ultra Space, and the Pokémon League still cause blackouts as usual.
  • Because You Were Nice to Me: Plumeria says Guzma likes Lusamine because she was the only adult who ever seemed to see how strong he was.
  • Big Bad: Lusamine.
  • Big Blackout: Sophocles' Totem summoning machine works as it should, but not without knocking out the power to Hokulani Observatory.
  • Big Boo's Haunt:
    • There are a couple cemeteries that have their fair share of Ghost-types haunting them.
    • The Thrifty Megamart is a long abandoned supermarket where many ghosts have taken up residence.
  • Big Eater:
    • You are. The protagonist trainer can grab up to 50 servings of food at the Battle Buffetnote , and scarfs down all of it after doing so. It's possible to eat 24 servings of food and still be completely unsatisfied and still hungry. And that's not even mentioning the intricate detail your character puts into a dish when eating in one of the Heart Scale restaurants. And guess what? You can eat however much you want, wallet permitting!
    • The kahunas, when they treat you to a meal at their local restaurants after you defeat them, will be surprised that you can't keep up with their eating habits. So the protagonist, someone who can eat a load of food at the buffet, can't finish a dish that the local kahuna can polish off.
    • Not to mention the Buffet Queen, who challenges you to an Eating Contest if you eat at the Buffet enough. Her stated goal is to find restaurants like this. (And much like your character, she's thin as a rail.)
  • Big Guy, Little Guy: Every Totem Beast is a Big Guy who can use S.O.S summoning to summon a Little Guy.
  • Big "WHAT?!":
    • Hau's reaction to Lusamine telling him she's over 40.
    • Beauty Carolyn gives a "Whaaat!" when she's defeated at the Battle Buffet.
  • Bilingual Bonus:
    • Team Skull's leitmotif and the voiceclip heard when sometimes spotted by male grunts features the Japanese word for skull, Dokuro, regularly.
    • Nearly every place name in Alola means something in Hawaiian.
    • It helps to know (or memorize) greetings in several languages in order to get more Festival Coins in the language lesson mission at the Festival Plaza.
    • In the post-game Ultra Beasts story, a Running Gag involves Looker yelling "It's a disaster!" in various languages whenever he receives more information about an Ultra Beast.
    • Bloom Doom (the Grass type Z-Move)'s Chinese name (絢爛繽紛花怒放) features one. The last two characters are a pun on 怒 (rage) and 怒放 (bloom).
  • Bishonen Line: The Alola Starters all get more humanoid toward the end of their evolutions. With Decidueye, it's less noticeable (due to the fact that owls are already kind of humanoid-looking to begin with), but Primarina is a sea lion resembling a mermaid, and Incineroar basically amounts to a humanoid musclebound tiger.
  • Bittersweet Ending: At the end of the game, the player becomes Alola's first Champion, Lusamine is apparently open to changing her ways, and everything seems peaceful again. Then Lillie decides to leave for Kanto in order to find a treatment for her ill and weak mother Lusamine, as she still has Nihilego's neurotoxins in her system. Finally, it's revealed that there are Ultra Beasts around Alola, ready to possibly wreak havoc.
  • Blazing Inferno Hellfire Sauce: In the fourth Trial, Mallow makes a poi-like meal to lure the Totem Beast qualifies: the Beast doesn't eat all of it, and it proves so spicy that Kiawe and Lana can't handle it.
  • Bleak Level: Po Town is in ruins, covered with graffiti, and only inhabited by Team Skull members. There's no usual catchy theme here, only somber ambient music, and it rains heavily all the time.
  • Blood Knight: According to the Pokédex, some Pokémon become this upon Mega Evolving. For example, it's stated that the combat instincts of Mega Sharpedo have exploded and Mega Lucario's fighting style is described as heartless.
  • Bomb Whistle: The animation for Fissure includes a cartoon "falling" sound as the target is dropped through the fissure.
  • Book Ends: On the first island during the main story, Rotom will wonder if the Trainer School is where trainers learn or a school where trainers teach. On the final island, it wonders if the Ruins of Hope are hopeful ruins or where hope goes to die.
    • The game begins with the protagonist moving from Kanto to Alola. The game ends with Lillie moving from Alola to Kanto.
  • Born Under the Sail: The Seafolk, who live in a flotilla of Pokémon-shaped houseboats and travel the seas nomadically in search of new wonders to bring back to Alola for trade. The Seafolk Village where they’re found isn’t even a true village so much as a system of docks, with the houses simply being the Seafolk boats that happen to be at anchor there when you visit.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing:
    • In most areas, there's usually one trainer that cannot be challenged until every other trainer in the route is defeated. These trainers are tougher and usually use powerful Z-Moves and form strategies around held items like the Red Card or Focus Sash.
    • Early into the game there's a trainer with a Miltank with Rollout, Stomp and Milk Drink. This is very difficult compared to most NPC trainer classes in the game.
    • In rare instances, a wild Pokémon may call for help and summon its evolved form. This can quickly turn a standard battle against a wild Pokémon into an unexpected boss battle.
  • Bragging Rights Reward: Eat at the Buffet enough times and you'll encounter the Buffet Queen, who challenges you. Not to a Pokémon battle, but to see who can eat more. The only reward you get if you win is the right to her title. (And you don't get the usual prize either, making it a waste of a daily event.)
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: When GAME FREAK Morimoto challenges you to a battle, he says he forgot to save first, but knows he's not going to win anyway, so it won't matter.
  • Bridal Carry: Hapu's grandmother grants the protagonist the ability to call the Ride Pokémon Machamp, who carries the protagonist this way as it runs around. Long before that, the player meets a woman and her deceased husband's Machamp at a cemetery, also carrying her in its arms.
  • Brick Joke:
    • In Heahea City's ferry terminal, you can find a kid who does online link battles under the name Electriwin. In Malie City, an entire island later, another kid laments always losing to someone by that name.
    • When you sleep on your bed, the screen fades to black, and you are later awoken by your mother's Meowth, who gives you an Awakening. If you sleep on Hapu's bed at her grandmother's house, the Alolan Meowth there scratches you awake, and then gives you an Awakening.
  • Brief Accent Imitation: When you first arrive to Paniola Town, Rotom speaks a line with a southern twang.
    Rotom: Ahhh...Now this izzz a mighty fine place. I reckon I could get to like it here, pardner.
  • Broken Bridge:
    • As always, events seem to crop up to keep you from going places you shouldn't, but in this case, some are integral to the story. For instance, an unwieldy Tauros blocks your path to Hau'oli City (until you discover a rapport with Pokémon that other characters recognize that calms it).
    • It also invokes it with the island challenge blockades, which are removed after the respective trials' completion.
    • A literal example is the rope bridge leading to the Ruins of Conflict on Melemele Island. You're on the bridge when it collapses early in the game (requiring Tapu Koko to rescue you), and it isn't repaired until you've become the champion.
  • Broken Record: If you open the menu or Ride Pager while the Rotom Pokédex is talking, it will repeat the same line until you wait for it to finish and allow its dialogue box to disappear.
  • The Bus Came Back:
    • After an absence from the Gen VI games after their debut in Black and White, female Backpackers can be seen and battled again.
    • Red, Blue, and Cynthia have returned since their last appearances in Pokémon Black 2 and White 2. They can be encountered in the Battle Tree.
    • Surprisingly, Professor Burnet appears, having married Kukui sometime between the events of her debut in Pokémon Dream Radar and Sun and Moon.
    • Anabel from Emerald makes a return as well, helping you dealing with the Ultra Beasts. Judging from what Looker says, this is THE Anabel from Emerald, not the mega universe counterpart (as opposed to Cynthia, Colress, Red, and Blue/Green).
    • GAME FREAK Morimoto returns as a post-game Bonus Boss, reprising the role from Black and White and B2W2 after an absence in Generation VI.
    • Colress and Grimsley make their first reappearances since Black 2 and White 2.
  • Buffet Buffoonery: The Battle Buffet, naturally. Here, Trainers will challenge you for the dishes you try to pick up, with dishes that differ in quality and servings depleted each turn. You have ten turns to grab as much food as you can, and your prize at the end depends on a satisfaction score, Max Revive being the best prize.
  • But Not Too Black: Averted. The character customization feature allows you to pick from four different profiles: Pale with blond hair, light with black hair, brown with brown hair, and dark with black hair.
  • But Thou Must!:
    • There are many instances in the games where someone will ask you a yes-or-no question and both answers are "Yes" and something similar, such as "I guess..." or "Of course!"
    • When you undertake Kiawe's trial, you watch Marowak dance twice and point out the difference between the two. During the final dance, the Totem Salazzle photobombs the scene, and all four available answers to "What's different?" are variations of "Salazzle". Speaking of said Trial, once you begin it, you cannot leave until either you have felled all of your opponents or they have felled you.
    • In an example of But Thou Must Not, many players would be utterly delighted to catch a Pokémon with stats akin to a Legendary as early as level 27. Too bad you first fight Nihilego in Aether Paradise, whose Poké Ball Jammer prevents you from doing exactly that.
    • After dealing with Lusamine in Ultra Space, you return to the Altar of the Sunne/Moone and find that Nebby wants to keep going on adventures with you. You must catch Nebby. Knocking it out will only make it appear and battle you again.
    • Post-game, during the Ultra Beast sidequest, the player is told that they must be either captured or destroyed due to their danger. The player cannot merely knock the Ultra Beasts out; they need to capture them to move on.
  • Call-Back:
    • During the post-game, Wicke tells you that Lillie took Lusamine with her to Kanto for her journey to become a trainer to see Bill because she heard about him accidentally fusing with a Pokémon a while back, and Lillie wants to see if he can help her remove what's left of Nihilego's neurotoxins in Lusamine.
    • When entering Malie Garden again after beating Team Skull there, you can find people recreating the Nugget Bridge, right down to the Pokémon used and levels and dialog. Lampshaded, they did this on purpose.
    • A picture of Cosplay Pikachu can be found in the small back room of the abandoned Thrifty Megamart.
    • Back in Pokémon Black and White, Grimsley once said that a coin may not land heads or tails, and might not even land at all. In one option, he plans to con you in a coin flip guessing game here by having a Skarmory catch the coin, but you can call him on it, and he will fess up if you do.
    • The man in Haina Desert who wants to see a Solrock or Lunatone is implied, after you bring him said Pokémon, to be related to the Pokémon Center men from Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire (the Lunatone/Solrock produces the O-Power noise to make him regain his memories, after which he states that he gave the Lunatone's/Solrock's power to a group of men).
    • On Route 14, a Hiker says he's heard of a Pikachu who knows Surf, a reference to the surfing Pikachu from Pokémon Yellow and the Johto games.
  • Calling Your Attacks: Each Pokémon has a few that it can dramatically use via Z-Power.
  • Canon Discontinuity: It's been explicitly mentioned that the events of the demo are separate from that of the game.
  • Canon Immigrant: Playing the demo version of the game will net you a special Greninja that'll change into Ash-Greninja, making the hop from the anime. His moveset is almost identical to his anime counterpart; the only difference is that he has Night Slash instead of Cut.
  • Can't Catch Up: With the exception of the Moss Rock in Lush Jungle, the other two location-based evolution areas (Vast Poni Canyon and Mt. Lanakila) are placed close to the endgame (with one located on the final island that requires lots of effort in reaching and the other directly before the Pokémon League.) Thus, players will be stuck with being unable to evolve Magneton, Eevee (if they desire a Glaceon), Nosepass, Charjabug, and Crabrawler until late into the game.
  • Captain Obvious:
    • The first time you meet some Team Skull mooks, Ilima delivers a line that plays this trope straight.
      "Only thieves steal people's Pokémon. I won't stand for it."
    • The Ferry Terminal's sign at Heahea City:
      "Take a ship - it's surely faster than swimming."
    • At the Battle Buffet, you can tell how many servings of a dish are left by examining it. If you've just won a battle and taken a dish, you can examine the empty counter.
      "There's no food left at all!"
  • Cassandra Truth: At the climax of the Looker episode in the post game, Looker rushes in, announcing that he thinks he's seen a new Ultra Beast; both Anabel and Wicke reject this notion, as their equipment would have detected another, and they both think Looker is working too hard. He eventually agrees with them and drops the idea. As it turns out, Looker is half-right. The events have indeed caused a powerful Legendary to appear - Necrozma - it is technically not an Ultra Beast.
  • Cavalry Betrayal: Wild Pokémon may call for help during battles. For some Pokémon, though, their natural predator (such as Mareanie to Corsola) may arrive and attack them instead of the protagonist's Pokémon.
  • Central Theme:
    • The role of family and how it influences who one is and what they can become.
    • Growing up and growing old, and learning to move on from the past.
  • Cerebus Retcon:
    • Pokédex descriptions reveal that Mega Evolution has adverse physiological and psychological effects on the Pokémon that undergo it. This may be a reference to Mega Lucario in the XY anime, which went psychotic the first few times it underwent Mega Evolution.
    • A more minor example: Previous Pokédex descriptions for some Pokémon would sometimes describe a diet that mostly consists of berries, even when the Pokémon is based on a carnivorous animal. Sun and Moon drops that pretense and go into detail on predator and prey relationships.
    • A related concept is the idea of humans eating Pokémon. For example, cutting and eating Slowpoke tails was considered a heinous act in the Gold and Silver games while its just a regular part of Alolan cooking in Sun and Moon.
  • Cerebus Rollercoaster:
    • One of the biggest examples of this happening in a single game in the franchise. The beginning of the game is all "Welcome to Alola, paradise in the Pokémon world! Yeah!" You soon find that many Pokédex entries are pretty dang dark. But hey, the Rival's a really nice and upbeat guy, Team Skull has a hilarious rap motif going on, and those Aether Foundation people seem like good folks except their President, who turns out to be the mother of this cute girl with a Pokémon in her Bag you've befriended, has actually gone completely insane, and among other things, nearly kills that Pokémon by using its power to open wormholes all over Alola letting in Ultra Beasts. But in the end you save Alola, you prove to be a true role model to Lillie, and you become the first ever Champion of the region! Oh look, Lillie's leaving for Kanto to help her mother and try to make amends, and, as it turns out, those Ultra Beasts that were released earlier are still on the loose.
    • The postgame sidequest involving the Eeveelution Trainers delves into some pretty dark themes involving old age and nostalgia, while the Ultra Beast arc again starts mixing in some moments of humor involving Looker.
  • Character Customization: This feature returns from Pokémon X and Y after being skipped in Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire. Once again, you can select your Trainer's skin colornote  and change clothes to taste, with the added option of removing hats.
  • Collection Sidequest: The game has a sidequest where a player has to gather Zygarde Cells and Zygarde Cores that are scattered throughout Alola.
  • Colony Drop: Continental Crush, whose Japanese name is "World's End Fall".
  • Color-Coded for Your Convenience:
    • Along with the colors indicating what percentage of Power Points a move has left, Sun and Moon points out super-effective attacks with text written in yellow.
    • At the Battle Buffet, some dishes provide more satisfaction than others. The tastiest/most popular dishes have gold covers, second-best have silver covers, and the least popular have bronze.
    • Apartment doors you can enter are green, the ones you can't are white.
  • Colorful Theme Naming: Each of the four islands is named after the Hawaiian word for the official color of its real-life counterpart.
  • Combat Pragmatist: While it's not uncommon for an opposing Trainer to show this in the more recent titles, some of the Totem Beasts themselves are rather savvy while using S.O.S battles. For instance, the second trial involves a Totem Wishiwashi, which can summon an Alomomola or a normal Wishiwashi; both these Pokémon can use Helping Hand and a move that heals the Totem Beast, which in turn, helps it maintain its Schooling Ability. The fourth is a Lurantis that can summon a Castform who uses Sunny Day, which strengthens the Grass-Type Totem. The fifth is a Totem Vikavolt, whose partner is a Charjabug with the Battery Ability, which makes the Totem's Electric attacks more damaging. (And the Vikavolt itself has Vice Grip to punish any Trainers who think they can use a Ground Type to bring it down easily.). The last one, Totem Kommo-o, has Flash Cannon, a Steel-type move and can summon a Scizor to easily punish those thinking to curbstomp it with a Fairy-type to take advantage of Kommo-o's double weakness to Fairy.
  • Commonplace Rare: The currency for Hyper Training is bottle caps. They are very rare items that you can only find through sending your Pokémon on cave expeditions for treasure, trying your luck at the Treasure Hunt stall in the Festival Plaza, or trading shards for them, or, very rarely, by fishing them up. No, you can't get them by simply buying drinks, that would make too much sense.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard:
    • Within Ilima's trial you can battle level 11 Alolan Raticate or Gumshoos, and the Totem Raticate or Gumshoos is about level 12 on top of the Defense boost it gets from the Totem. Rattata and Yungoos don't normally evolve until level 20.
    • When you battle Ilima the second time around, he sends out a level 15 Gumshoos.
    • There is a rare chance that a wild Pokémon will summon its evolved relative. However, some of the evolved Pokémon will appear at a level said pre-evolution doesn't evolve at. Most notorious is a level 10 Salamence summoned in by a wild Bagon as early as Melemele Island, the first area of the game.
    • There's a random scientist with a level 29 Magneton, 1 level early.
    • The Totem Lurantis and Totem Salazzle are several levels below the levels their pre-evolved forms evolve at note 
    • Mallow's trial has you battling either a level 22 Parasect or Shiinotic depending on the version. Both Paras and Morelull evolve at level 24.
    • In the Battle Tree, there used to be a Kommo-o with the move Shell Smash, which Kommo-o cannot learn. The Version 1.1 patch replaced that move with Draco Meteor, which every Dragon-type Pokémon can learn via tutoring.
    • Speaking of the Battle Tree, opposing Trainers can have access to powerful Held Items that are currently unobtainable in Sun and Moon for players, including the very powerful Custap Berry (at low health, it gives the next move used priority) or Mega Stones not able to be purchased/found (for the most part this one is less of an issue since all of these Mega Stones are available via Mystery Gift, for a time).
  • The Computer Is A Lying Bastard: The new feature of telling you the effectiveness of moves against your opponent only takes typings into account; it ignores abilities (e.g., Levitate nullifying a Ground-type weakness) and move effects (e.g. Gravity nullifying a Ground immunity). Justified, since a Pokémon's Ability is supposed to be hidden from the opponent under normal circumstances.
  • Confusion Fu: Alluded to by an Ace Trainer in Poni Wilds.
    "Pokémon that can learn many different moves can, by doing so, deceive the opposing Trainer!"
  • Console Cameo: As with the previous games in the series, the player has Nintendo's current home console in their room, once again a Wii U.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Dexio reminisces about those five friends in one meeting with you.
    • Alolan Marowak's Ghost-typing is a reference to its role in the story of the Generation 1 games, and Cubone's Pokédex entry referencing how it wears the skull of its dead mother.
    • At one point in the game, a few Team Skull grunts capture a Slowpoke in an attempt to sell its tail.
    • In the Hau'oli City mall, you find a woman standing in front of a set of posters, who comments that there's no switch under a poster, calling back to the fact that the entrance the Team Rocket HQ in Pokémon Red and Blue was behind a poster in the Game Corner.
    • In the postgame, Wicke says that Lillie is going to Kanto to get help for her mother's condition from Bill, since Bill had also fused with a Pokémon once.
    • Lana claims she once reeled in a Red Gyarados. (Whether the protagonist believes her or not is up to the player.)
    • At the Battle Buffet, one of the dishes uses an Eggant Berry, one of the e-Reader exclusive Berries that only appeared in Gen III.
    • One of the workers in the Geothermal Power Plant once mentions how the Kanto power plant lost power because of one missing machine part, and it had been long abandoned before that, but the legendary Zapdos once appeared before someone there.
    • A man on Route 14 says he once saw a Pikachu that knew how to use Surf.
    • During the post-game, Looker's explanation of the concept of a "Faller" and how Anabel got to this world is very much reminiscent of his (or, possibly, his counterpart's from another dimension's) predicament in Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire.
    • At Malie Garden, the Nugget Bridge challenge from Red and Blue is emulated, down to each Trainer using the exact same Pokémon and the final trainer offering the player the opportunity to join Team Rocket. After the protagonist battles him, he admits everyone on the bridge was just having fun and that it's ridiculous to ask the player to join Team Rocket because Team Rocket disbanded years ago.
    • If you meet her in the Battle Tree, you'll find that five of Anabel's six possible Pokémon are based on the ones she used in Emerald's Battle Tower. Before the fight, she'll remark that something about the Battle Tree feels nostalgic to her.
    • The Fortune Teller Tents may give you a phrase from the region they're named after, which were lines from core-series games in previous generations. For example, you can get "You better have Burn Heal!" from the Kanto Tent.
  • Convenient Weakness Placement:
    • In Route 2's Pokémon Center there is a NPC willing to trade a Machop for a Spearow. Perfect for taking on the first trial and its Normal (or Dark/Normal)-type totem Pokémon. In case you don't want to use Machop, the route also has Makuhita roaming in the grass and chance that Crabrawler are in the berry piles. Not only that, but the TM for Brick Break can be found in the trial site itself.
    • An NPC in Route 5's Pokémon Center will trade a Bounsweet for a Lillipup, which ensures you have a Grass-type ready for the trial in Brooklet Hill right next to it.
    • Brooklet Hill, the site of Lana's Trial, has plenty of Water-type Pokémon close in level to your party, just in time for Kiawe's Fire-type trial.
    • Kiawe's trial in turn is in Wela Volcano Park (with the Totem's den being away from natural wild Pokémon spawns). The area has the Fire/Poison Salandit, which will let you come full circle with this trope and Akala's trials. The last Trial before the Grand Trial is Mallow's, with a Grass-type totem Pokémon. And before you even reach Lush Jungle, Colress will come and gives you the TM for Flame Charge, meaning that you will have a good Fire-type move before the trial.
    • All of this leads up the to Grand Trial of Akala, the Kahuna Olivia, who uses Rock-types. That means that the Pokémon you can find in Brooklet Hill, Lush Jungle and Diglett's Tunnel (what you actually have to pass through to even get there) can make short work of her team.
    • Before the Dragon Trial in Vast Poni Canyon, you can not only find the TM for Dazzling Gleam, but you are given the Fairium Z without needing to do anything for it, meaning that you have something what is super effective against the Pokémon in the trial. And in case you needed another move against them, the trial site contains the TM for Dragon Claw.
    • The Post-Game quest involves you capturing (not defeating, you won't progress until they're captured) several Ultra Beasts. Before the credits roll, you battle and can even capture Tapu Koko, which can learn False Swipe and Thunder Wave via TM. It also has Nature's Madness, which is basically a glorified Super Fang, and you receive the Tapunium Z after defeating/capturing it, which can upgrade Nature's Madness into Guardian of Alola, which removes 75% of the opponent's remaining health instead of the usual 50%. You'd be hard pressed to find a better Pokémon to catch others with.
  • Contractual Boss Immunity: Totem Pokémon cannot have their SOS ability disabled, unlike wild Pokémon.
  • Creator Cameo: Like in previous core series games, the player can visit the game developers, who are found in an office building in Heahea City. Shigeki Morimoto can be battled once a day once the player has beaten the Elite Four, and his team consists entirely of Gen. I Pokémon: Kangaskhan, Machamp, Dragonite, Flareon, Jolteon, and Vaporeon.
  • Cross-Popping Veins: The moves Swagger, Bide, and Super Fang involve red veins in their animations.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!:
    • Only the circle pad can be used to move the player character, as the D-pad is assigned to Alola's Poké Rides. Even among Pokémon games made for the 3DS, this is unprecedented.
    • The HM system has been removed in favor of Poké Rides. It's accessed by pressing Y, but if you're a veteran of the series, don't be surprised if you find yourself opening the Pokémon menu when you need to fly. The NPC who gives you the Fly TM remarks on this change, and the two NPCs at Poni Breaker Coast also tell you they can't sell Surf and Waterfall as HMs.
    • You now switch Pokémon by first pressing Y in the Pokémon menu instead of it being part of the list of options on a Pokémon. Downplayed if you were accustomed to moving them by dragging and dropping them with the stylus; now you have to hold the stylus on the Pokémon you want to move for a second before you can move them that way, otherwise you get the same menu as if you'd selected it with A.
    • In previous games, when healing up at the Pokémon Center, the nurse would say something in the vein of "Let me take your Pokémon for a moment" and then heal your Pokémon. In Sun and Moon, an extra A-press is required when the nurse says that line.
    • In the 6th generation, when a Pokémon Mega Evolves, its speed and ability before Mega Evolving is used to calculate turn order. Now, the Pokémon's speed and ability after Mega Evolving is used to calculate turn order.
    • Unlike the two previous generations, this game no longer allows to instantly close all open menus at once by pressing X. The X button now has different functions depending on the menu, none of which involves closing the menu.
    • In the previous generation, you can check a Pokémon's moves during battle by holding L while selecting the move with either A or the stylus. Here, you can only check moves with L+A; selecting the move with the stylus will use the move, regardless of whether or not L is held. This won't affect you if you prefer using buttons instead of the touchscreen, but if you're used to the stylus controls, this can lead to situations where you accidentally use a move when you were checking to determine whether or not you actually wanted to use it.
    • Closed doors require an A-press before you can enter a building or room, when in previous core series games, you could either walk through them or have the player character open them automatically.
    • Since there are more than 4 Poké Rides, you can't map them all at once. This leads to the player having to shuffle the Poké Rides on the D-Pad.
  • Dance Party Ending: At the end of the main story the player is treated to an extended cutscene in which the various captains, kahunas, and other major characters throw an elaborate festival in honor of Alola's new Champion.
  • Death Glare: Pokémon under the effect of a Totem aura or Z-Power glare at their opponents.
  • Delayed Reaction: When Hau discovers the President of Aether Lusamine is over 40, he just says, "You are?" After a pause, he gives a Big "WHAT?!".
  • Department of Redundancy Department:
    • Konikoni City's Lighthouse Point has a sign there that reads, "Lighthouse Point: The point that has a lighthouse."
    • When you leave a Pokémon with the Nursery Lady, she says, "I'll take care of your [Pokémon] for a while. Come back again after a while."
  • Developers' Foresight: Has its own page here.
  • Developer's Room: Much like other games, you can meet the developers of the game during your adventures. This time in an office in Heahea City. You can even talk to Shigeki Morimoto (one of the programmers of the Pokémon games) and battle him once you've beaten the game and become champion. He'll even remark on Pokémon that originated from the Virtual Console releases of Pokémon Red and Blue.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: While they're Eldritch Abomination level monsters, it is possible to defeat the Ultra Beasts and even capture them.
  • Difficulty Spike:
    • Poni Island marks a jump in Pokémon levels. Prior to Poni Island, the strongest trainer the player faces has Pokémon all at Level 41. The wild Pokémon on Poni Island are all Level 43 to 44, trainers with Pokémon whose Levels are 44 to 45, and not too far in, the player faces the Kahuna, whose ace Pokémon is Level 48.
    • Motherbeast Lusamine fight has all her Pokémon at Level 50, after a cutscene you then fight Solgaleo/Lunala right after where they are Level 55. Thankfully they are quite easy to capture.
    • The Final Boss has his ace Pokémon at Level 58. The first boss the player faces in the post game storyline has Pokémon all at Level 61.
  • Disappeared Dad:
    • As par for the course for the series, the player character's father is nowhere to be found.
    • Hau's father left the region after being fed up with the kahuna's customs.
    • While the game never explicitly states what happened to Lillie's and Gladion's father, it's implied that an Ultra Beast-related accident caused him to disappear - and reappear on Poké Pelago with no memories.
  • Disconnected Side Area: The northeast corner of Konikoni City is blocked off by a white fence. You have to go all the way around through a secret part of Diglett's Tunnel to get there, requiring Machamp Shove (the final Poké Ride, which you get long after your visit to Konikoni). The weirdness kicks in when you notice the townspeople apparently walled off the short, safe path to their own lighthouse for no real reason.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: The story has Guzma and Team Skull, who are revealed to be working for the Aether Foundation.
  • Disc-One Nuke:
    • There's a very rare chance of you finding a wild Salamence on Route 3. (About 1%, and only in S.O.S Battles with Bagon, which itself has a 1% encounter rate.)
    • A special Munchlax could be obtainable via Mystery Gift before January 11th, 2017. Despite starting out at Level 5, it has solid stats. And as soon as obtaining that Munchlax, the player can receive Snorlium Z, though it can't use it unless it has Giga Impact. Its moves include Happy Hour (which can increase money gained from battles) and Hold Back (which always leaves a wild Pokémon with at least 1 HP remaining, making catching them easier.) What's more is that the Munchlax is marked as your own rather than as a traded Pokémon, so obedience will never be a problem.
    • You can gain a Machop pretty early via in-game trade, right before the first Trial where the Boss is a Totem Gumshoos or Raticate depending on the game.
    • The Festival Plaza is one you have from nearly the beginning of the game. Among all the buildings you can have are: Food stalls that can provide stat boosts or level up Pokémon by several levels, item stores that can sell the best items, including stat boosting ones, early in the game, Bounce Houses to boosts Pokémon's stats, and lottery stores that you can draw from daily that have a better chance of getting rarer items the higher rank it is (including the coveted Master Ball from a "Big Dreams" lottery store). There's even a dye store where you can die White-colored clothes your favorite color (though the store of the Color you like might be exclusive to the other versionnote , you can bring it to your Plaza though other players). The best part is that you don't need the game's normal currency to buy anything there, you use Festival Coins, which are earned very easily and quickly thanks to assisting other player characters that come to your Plaza or doing missions with other players online, which are constantly happening. The only downsides are the fact that when stores run out of inventory, they don't restock until the next day, and stores like the Haunted House or Lottery Stores can only be used once a day, but they're both easily negligible downsides.
    • Just before the second trial, you can obtain the TM for Scald, a very powerful (80 base power) Water-type move that may also burn the target. Teach it to one of the easily found local Water-types like Wishiwashi (whose Schooling forme has stats on par with legendaries) or Dewpider (whose Water Bubble ability doubles the power of its Water-type attacks), and you can run right over anything that doesn't resist Water for a large portion of the game.
    • Eevee can be found in the wild not too long after you reach Akala Island, and you can get an Eevee egg from the Nursery by talking to one of the breeders there. Because the Soothe Bell is obtained on Melemele Island, and Pokémon Refresh is available since the game's first hour, it's highly possible to obtain an Espeon, Umbreon, or a Sylveon before even facing the the first totem on Akala. Evolving them gives a pretty large boost to their stats - and Sylveon is trivially easy to obtain. Further, similar to Salamence above, the wild Eevee on Routes 4 and 6 may call for help and summon an Espeon (during the day) or Umbreon (at night). This allows you to catch one directly and skip over the friendship grinding.
  • Doing In the Wizard: Solgaleo/Lunala are revered in Alola for being the child and emmisary of the sun/moon, akin to the mythical power over nature past legendaries had. Then it turns out they're merely Ultra Beasts from a different world, and are anything but unique specimens with a relation to celestial bodies.
  • Down on the Farm: Paniola Ranch, on Akala Island has the same feel. It has fields of grain (where Pokémon are hiding) and cattle (Miltank and Tauros, of course), along with Captain Mallow, a Farmer's Daughter type.
  • Dub Name Change: A notable aversion in comparison to the larger franchise, for the English script at least; due in part to the theme of the game this time around (folks from different regions coming together), Game Freak and TPCI are making an effort to ensure that the names of the human characters are unified across regions and that the names of many of the natives are recognizably Hawaiian. The only ones who are really different in English are some of the trial captains (Lana and Sophocles being the big standouts), Faba, and Samson Oak (he falling victim to being related to a Legacy Character). The names in the various Romance language scripts still tend to vary a bit more.
  • Dummied Out: Datamining of the games has uncovered walking and running animations for nearly every Pokémon. Apparently Game Freak planned to include following Pokémon like there was in HeartGold and SoulSilver, but left it out, the likely culprit being that the 3DS couldn't handle it in certain situations.

    E to G 
  • Early-Bird Cameo:
    • Quite literally, as a few shots from the announcement trailer show Alola's regional bird, Pikipek, being rendered.
    • Early in the gameplay trailer, as the protagonist is leaving his house, Rockruff can be briefly seen standing next to an NPC.
    • Solgaleo and Lunala were seen in the starter reveal trailer, both in-game and on the box art, before their names and types were revealed.
    • The September 6, 2016 trailer featured a brief shot of Ribombee.
    • If you look carefully at the Alola region's official artwork you can make out a small island with a large plant growing out of it which resembles a lone palm tree or a giant beanstalk. On October 4th 2016, it was revealed that it is Isle Abeens, one of the islands of the Poké Pelago.
    • A picture of Lusamine (the Big Bad) can be seen in a book in the intro.
  • Easter Egg:
    • If the Player Character is made to spin around in place for long enough, they will eventually start doing a ballerina twirl.
    • If you mash (instead of hold) run/B button while the Player Character is moving, they will lose their balance (comparable to Platform Game characters who stand near edges).
    • Lying in some of the beds you come across doesn't grant you a nap and restore your Pokémon as in previous games, not even your own bed. Instead, your character will lie down and make observations about the owner of the bed.
    • Sitting in chairs is not completely gone- you can sit in most if not all throne-like chairs.
    • There is a Sightseer class trainer checking out brochures by the cafe in the Poni Island Pokémon Center. He'll battle you with a shiny Exeggcute, one of the only programmed shiny encounters in the game, and will give you six Big Nuggets if you win.
  • Eccentric Mentor: Professor Kukui is weird. His style of dress - baseball cap and no shirt under his lab coat, Cool Shades, and sneakers- is rather unorthodox, and the first time you visit his lab, his research (as Lillie calls it) sounds like fighting (and she says he does that a lot.) And on top of all that, he apparently has a side job as a masked wrestler.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The Ultra Beasts are mysterious creatures with code names whose power can threaten humans and Pokémon. One Ultra Beast, UB-01, looks like a jellyfish, but it's made of a glass-like substance, is constantly changing shape, and its movements are said to resemble those of a young girl. In reality, the Ultra Beasts are Pokémon from another universe, and they can bring other things with them— including people.
  • Eldritch Location:
    • The abandoned Thrifty Megamart where you do the sixth Trial counts; you confront the Totem Beast in a small room which isn't there, according to Acerola. And she's right; if you go into the store again, the door to the room is missing. Of course, the Pokémon inside are Ghosts...
    • Haina Desert functions as this, as the paths loop back on themselves and trying to go north in multiple instances will lead to the same dead end, unless you follow the rock formations in the correct order.
    • Ultra Space, the home of the Ultra Beasts. The player visits Ultra Space to subdue Lusamine. While the game doesn't show much of Ultra Space, there's something very alien about the area. Lillie mentions it's hard to breathe, and the Rotom Dex is inoperable.
  • Empty Room Psych:
    • Those Roadside Motels turn out to be very important for the post-game Ultra Beast quest.
    • The final room in Resolution Cave is empty except for a few items, but during the post-game UB story, the final Ultra Beast is found there.
    • The Lake of the Sunne/Moone contains a single TM and absolutely nothing else. Unless you bring your mascot legendary there in the post-game.
  • Enemy Rising Behind: Played for with dramatic effect in the fourth trial. Mallow, Kiawe, and Lana clearly see the Totem Luranis looming behind your character before you do. (It might have been a lot scarier if said Totem didn't look like a pink, fluffy mantis-bunny hybrid that looked like it was trying too hard to be scary.)
  • Enemy Summoner: A new battle mechanic is SOS battles, which allows wild Pokémon to call for help, summoning a lower-leveled Pokémon to aid it in battle. This most notably seen during the Totem Battles in the Island Trials, but it can happen with most wild Pokémon. If it happens, the battle becomes a double battle and your Pokémon can gain more Effort Points, and as a result, increase the chances of finding a Shiny or a Pokémon with Pokérus. It's also the only way to catch certain wild Pokémon, and can be encouraged via use of an item called an Adrenaline Orb and by using a Pokémon with Unnerve, Pressure, or Intimidate.
    • For the random encounter Pokémon, this can lead to Summon Bigger Fish, as they will occasionally summon a more powerful Pokémon to help. The most common case is when a pre-evolution calls in an evolved one, such as a Magby calling in a Magmar.
    • Doesn't work out for Corsola if a Mareanie is nearby. Mareanie are predators, so instead of helping the Corsola fight the player, it will help itself to a Corsola sandwich. The same applies to Carbink who may summon a jewel-hungry Sableye by accident.
  • Equipment Spoiler: If you browse the GTS, you may find some Pokémon are caught in a strange blue and gold Poké Ball never seen during the main game. Then when you see Lusamine using one to send out UB-01, you'll probably catch onto what they're for before you even get them.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Once Guzma finds out the deeper evil plot going on, and what exactly it entails, he wants no part in it.
  • Experience Booster: Just like the previous generation, raising a Pokémon's affection up to two hearts in Pokémon Refresh (instantly granted by feeding a Pokémon a Rainbow Bean) grants a 20% bonus, and just like all core series games, traded Pokémon get an experience boost. In the postgame, Kukui will also reward a Lucky Egg after registering at least 50 entries in the Pokédex.
  • Exposed to the Elements:
    • Inverted with returning characters Cynthia, who keeps her all-black ensemble and longcoat, and Colress, who appears in a thick button-up coat instead of his lab coat. Neither outfit is particularly practical for the Alolan tropical climate. Though in Colress' case, an NPC who met him mentions that his lab coat is filled with a coolant technology.
    • Wicke probably has good reason to be wearing a thick pink sweater around Aether Paradise.
    • Played With when Kukui talks to you right before you enter the Elite Four; he's still in his usual sandals, long shorts, and lab coat without a shirt when you talk to him on the snowy peak of Mt Lanakila, and you can lampshade this by asking "Aren't you cold?". However, considering most of the shirt options are either short sleeves or tank tops, and most of the pants options are either shorts or (if you're playing as a girl) skirts, you're probably not much warmer than he is.
  • Face–Heel Turn: Guzma founded Team Skull after he failed to become a Trial Captain.
  • Failed a Spot Check: During the photo montage in the credits, there's a Masked Royal mask hanging on the wall right behind Kukui and Burnet. Since she doesn't know that Kukui is the Masked Royal, she is either rolling a lot of ones on her spot checks, or she puts up a good act.
  • Fairy Companion: The Rotom Dex helps players along the way with finding Pokémon and letting them know where to go next.
  • Fandom Rivalry: An In-Universe example: Moon's Pokédex entry for Seaking says more of their Trainers than of the Pokémon:
    Trainers who are crazy for Seaking are divided into horn enthusiasts and fin enthusiasts. The two groups do not get along well.
  • Fantasy Helmet Enforcement: The safety gear that comes with Ride Pokémon includes a helmet. Makes sense, since the protagonist is a kid, and crashing through boulders and riding across a rocky path invite injury (but not in-game, of course).
  • "Far Side" Island:
    • The Poké Pelago is a group of tiny islands where you can send your boxed Pokémon to train them, get various items like Pokébeans and evolutionary stones, farm berries and even obtain wild Pokémon. One of the islands, Isle Abeens, resembles a Far Side Island with a beanstalk-like plant in place of the singular palm tree.
    • In areas off the coast where Lapras/Sharpedo can be ridden, there's always one or two tiny islands with a palm tree and usually an item to pick up.
  • Fascinating Eyebrow: Cooks, a trainer class debuting in these games, raise one eyebrow while smiling in their post-battle pose, and male Rising Stars raise their eyebrow while frowning in their post-battle pose.
  • First Town: Iki Town is where the player receives a starter and has their first battle, but it is actually not where they live.
  • 5 Bad Band: The leaders of Team Skull and the Aether Foundation, each with their own unique title:
    • President Lusamine is the Big Bad, having driven the plot in her attempts to capture Nebby for its ability to create Ultra Wormholes.
    • Guzma is The Dragon, being second in command to Lusamine
    • Branch Chief Faba is The Evil Genius, in charge of the Aether Foundation's R&D and being implied through his journal to have been one of the people behind Type: Null's creation.
    • Gladion is The Brute, being the guy who serves as Team Skull's enforcer, and he also happens to be Lusamine's son.
    • Admin Plumeria serves as the Dark Chick, being the Team Mom to Team Skull, albeit as a rougher sort than most examples.
    • Sixth Ranger Traitor: Wicke turns out to be the Sixth Ranger Traitor, having been a mole for the International Police the whole time.
  • Five-Man Band:
  • Floral Theme Naming: Most of the characters introduced are named after flowering plants, particularly those native to Hawaii.
  • Flower Motifs: Alongside characters' names, some NPC Trainer classes use flowers in their designs. Dancers, Gentlemen, Madames, Youngsters, Bellhops, and Teachers/female Office Workers have flower patterns on their clothes. Lasses have flowers in their hair, and Sightseers wear flower hats, and the female protagonist features flowers in her default outfit.
  • Flunky Boss: Totem Pokémon have the ability to call ally Pokémon into battle, though the player is still only allowed one Pokémon out at a time.
  • Food Porn: Eat in any of the restaurants and you will be greeted with descriptions so intricate, your character might as well be a food critic. And that's not even mentioning the Malasadas, which has TV shows that describe their taste with such detail.
  • Forced Tutorial: In true Pokémon tradition, players have to undergo the standard "learn how to throw Poké Balls" tutorial. Additionally, the first couple of hours of the game are essentially a forced tutorial, with players having to spend time at a Trainer School no less, and being told that moves have types.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • In X and Y, the player can receive an item called the "Strange Souvenir", which depicts a Pokémon said to be worshipped as a guardian in a distant and previously unknown region. Not only does this perfectly fit the description of the Tapu, but said Souvenir can also be found for sale at a store in Alola. The item has no actual use in either game, however.
    • The first shot you see of Professor Kukui is his hand wearing a wedding ring. Later on, you meet his wife, Professor Burnet.
    • A subtle one in-game, but if you look closely at the walls around Po Town, which was taken over by Team Skull, they look oddly similar to the stainless white you saw during your brief tour at Aether Paradise, hinting at Team Skull's alliance with the Aether Foundation.
    • Another subtle one, you can hear a few riffs of the Aether Foundation's leitmotif in Guzma's battle theme.
    • Lillie mentions early in the game that she only wears clothes that her mother chose for her. When you first visit the Aether Foundation, Lusamine comments that children would be happier if they simply listened to the adults around them, and suggests taking Hau out to buy him new clothes of her own choosing. He refuses, and wagers only she and Lillie could pull off clothes like hers.
    • After you encounter your first Ultra Beast, the Aether Foundation President gains a Slasher Smile (which is explicitly given camera focus and zoomed in) and expresses interest in "protecting" it.
    • The "Train On" series of pre-release promotional videos conclude with Shohei and Hoku trading a Lunala and Solgaleo to one another. You're given an extra Cosmog with which to follow suit, making it possible to have both cover legendaries on a single cart without losing out on one of them.
    • When you're invited to Aether Paradise for the first time, Lillie expresses a bit of unease and opts out of tagging along. Upon arrival, you'll quickly recognize it as the place Lillie and Nebby escaped from in the prologue. As the game progresses, you'll find out why they did.
    • Early on, after clearing Illima's Trial, he mentions how anyone can pass the roadblocks if they're escorted by/are a strong Pokémon trainer. As that particular one opens up for you, Professor Kukui comes from the other side, by himself. Being one of the strongest trainers in Alola, of course he's allowed to go anywhere he wants.
    • During your playthrough of the main story, you'll notice that this region's "Punk" trainer archetypes almost look identical to the Team Skull Grunts. After Team Skull's disbandment, the grunts that leave presumably become this archetype evidenced by a female punk apprenticing as a chef in Mallow's family restaurant after the main story.
    • After defeating Guzma for the second time, he declares his intent to beat you down someday no matter whose help he needs to do it. Not too long afterward, you learn of his alliance with Lusamine.
    • After your first battle with Lusamine, she shrieks, "All that I want is my precious beast! I don't care about any of the rest of you!" Guzma is also in the room. Later, you find him sitting alone in Ultra Space, having been used and abandoned by her.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: Doubling as a Funny Background Event, look behind the player after Acerola claims the back room in the abandoned Megamart doesn't exist. You can just barely see Mimikyu walk by, explaining why Acerola got goosebumps before she left.
  • From Bad to Worse: Wild Pokémon can call for help, another wild Pokémon might appear and fight along with it. Though this isn't the case for some Pokémon as the Pokémon that it call for help will attack it instead.
  • Full-Body Disguise: There are two examples of people wearing Pokémon disguises, which are good enough to fool the protagonist. Both use the overworld models of those Pokémon, so as far as the player can tell, the disguises are flawless.
  • Fun with Palindromes: Along with being derived from aloha, "Alola" is a palindrome.
  • Fusion Dance: In Ultra Space, Lusamine willingly fuses with a Nihilego in order to defeat the player character. Once the battle is over, she is un-fused when Nebby knocks her out of the air.
  • Game Face: Any Pokémon surrounding itself with Z-Power will get this before it unleashes its Z-move.
  • Gameplay and Story Integration:
    • A minigame involves throwing Pyukumuku on the beach back into the sea for money, which ties in with its flavor text of people taking part-time jobs for Pyukumuku cleanup since it's disliked by tourists. Additionally, Pyukumuku are said to always return to a spot they like, and the Pyukumuku in the minigame are always found in the same spots.
    • Several Pokémon are only found in ways that relate to their dex data or flavor text. Crabrawler, for example, can only be found in berry piles.
    • Some Pokémon called in SOS Battles are the natural predators of the Pokémon that summoned them, and will proceed to try to knock them out rather than help them.
    • The Pokédex mentions that Bagon like to jump from high cliffs in an attempt to fly. While they can be found as a rare wild Pokémon on Route 3, they're slightly more common in Kala'e Bay. In the former they can rarely SOS Call for Salamence, while in the latter they can call for Shelgon. The latter's grass patches are directly overlooked by Route 3, so the Bagon likely got there by hurling themselves off the cliff, at which point they train in order to evolve into Salamence so that they can get back up.
    • In order to begin a battle with a wild Wimpod, it usually must be chased down with Tauros, since it's very fast and will flee as soon as the player character gets near it. Fittingly, Wimpod's highest base stat by far is Speed, at 80.
    • Big Bad Lusamine calls the player out that her cryogenically freezing her favorite Pokémon is really no different than the player removing Pokémon from their party and sentencing them to the same fate trapped in a PC. While such an argument would ring true in about any other generation, in this game PC Pokémon are sent to the Poké Pelago, a series of tropical islands where they can frolic and relax, which proves Lusamine's methods wrong.
    • The Pokédex says that Guzzlord, having an immense appetite, eats everything in its path and hasn't been seen to leave any waste. In the game, most Pokémon who can learn Stockpile also learn both Swallow and Spit Up, but Guzzlord can only learn Stockpile and Swallow, not Spit Up.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation:
    • The idea behind the Alolan variants is that they're the result of the original variants adapting to the Alola region over time. Yet if you transfer a Pokémon that doesn't have an Alolan variant but evolves into a Pokémon that does (e.g. Pikachu and Cubone) from another generation, it will still evolve into the Alolan variant and not the original, as if Alola has the power to magically influence a Pokémon's evolution regardless of its region of origin. Breeding regular variants in Alola without an Everstone somehow produces the Alolan variant.
    • All but one of the Poké Rides are in the Alola Pokédex. However, having them in your Ride Pager does not mean they get registered in your 'dex.
    • Withdrawing Pokémon from your Box has no detrimental effects on certain facilities in the Poké Pelago. Even if one or more of your withdrawn Pokémon are sent into Isle Aphun earlier to mine for stones, or as your berry "gardeners" in Isle Aplenny. This has to do with the fact that the Pokémon that hang out in either island (as well as Isle Abeens) are randomized by the computer.
    • As the League Champion, you are forced to face challengers for your title. Losing doesn't mean you lose your title, or does it require you to rematch the challenger note  to reclaim the title.
  • The Gardener: The Pokémon left at Poké Pelago are mundane gardeners, helping to grow berries that are planted there.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: An In-Universe example; Pikachu, a Kanto-native, is very popular in Alola (to the point where this fame is why Mimikyu wears Pikachu merch, so it can be as beloved).
  • Get Out: The two words (and nothing else) Gladion says if you enter his motel room and talk to him.
  • Global Currency Exception: There are both returning GCE (Battle Points [BP] for the standard battle facilities, the Battle Royale Dome and the Battle Tree; and Heart Scales for the Move Reminder) and some new ones: Festival Coins in the Festival Plaza (which technically replaced Pokémiles introduced in the previous generation) and Poké Beans for the Poké Pelago.
  • Go-Karting with Bowser: Come the post-game when Team Skull's evil motives are no more, Plumeria, the admin, shows up as a potential challenger in the Battle Tree who may show up every 10th battle in Super Battles if you're playing Sun. Moon players instead get Guzma. Plumeria is also one of the ten challengers to your Champion title.
  • Good Costume Switch: After Team Skull is disbanded, all of the Grunts have taken off their Team Skull articles and look like Punk Girls and Punk Guys. Guzma has removed his tattoos and necklace, replaced his asymmetrical glasses with a pair with round frames, and covered the skull on his jacket with a red X. Plumeria has removed her tattoo and white eyeshadow, and she wears a Salazzle-themed bandanna and trousers instead of skull hair clips and black sweats.
  • Got Me Doing It: The Team Skull Grunts pepper their speech with "Yo". When you enter Po Town and go to the Pokémon Center, one of the Grunts there asks if you'd like to pay 10 Poké Dollars to heal your team, and you answer with either "Sounds good, yo", or "No thanks, yo"."
  • Gotta Catch Them All:
    • Besides the obvious (Pokémon is the Trope Namer, after all), the Battle Tree allows players to encounter trainers from other generations, such as Sinnoh Champion Cynthia, Hoenn Rival Wally, and Unova Elite Four Member Grimsley, and then recruit them to be available as your Multi-Battle partners. They only appear every 10 battles in the Super-versions of the Battle Tree challenges, and you have to beat them (and spend 10 BP) to scout them, so getting them all can take a while.
    • Gameplay wise, this trope is downplayed relative to the rest of the series and made more practical by eschewing a National Dex. This leaves a Regional Dex split between four islands, with only version exclusives and trade evolutions as any major obstacles. Needless to say, this makes it a lot easier to earn the Shiny Charm.
  • Graceful Loser: These are the first games to show NPC Trainers striking a pose pre-battle and having a different pose after losing. A few of them take their loss rather well. For example, Veterans extend their hands for a handshake or applaud the winner, female Preschoolers appear to be jumping for joy, and Cooks have an eyebrow raised while smiling.
  • Grail in the Garbage: You can buy the artifacts of several legendary Pokémon, including those of Dialga, Palkia, Giratina, Groudon, and Kyogre at a small shop in a mall. This is an Enforced Trope, as it is impossible to transfer items between generations.
  • Graphics Induced Superdeformed: Averted. Unlike Pokémon X and Y and Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, which, while upgraded to 3D models, still retained chibi-esque properties such as abnormally large heads and roughly similar character heights (AZ notwithstanding) for overworld characters as holdovers from the previous sprite-based titles, Sun/Moon are the first handheld games in the franchise where overworld character models are now normal-sized and realistically proportional to each other.
  • Green Hill Zone: Melemele Island counts as this because most of the locales around the player's house is grassland. The trial grounds are in even in a location called Verdant Cavern.
  • Guide Dang It!:
    • The Festival Plaza is this in spades: there is no explanation given to how each facility works (or what they sell) until the player tries it for themselves, the game doesn't give any signs that some facilities are exclusive to one version. The only way to find out that the facility directly to the right of the bridge into the castle (the first slot) is what is shared to other players if they ask "Do you know any good facilities?" is also easily missed.
    • Good luck finding all of the Zygarde cells. For one, nothing in the game tells you that some only appear in the daytime and others only appear at night. Likewise, you're not told just how many are left on a given island, meaning you could turn the entire region over just to find the very last one you missed.
    • Some Pokémon cannot be found by standard running through the grass, surfing on the water and so on. You'll need to do SOS battles, which is basically having the Pokémon call for help. Which Pokémon calls which and which Pokémon needs an SOS battle may require a little bit of reading.
    • Veteran players already know that certain Pokémon need exposure to a magnetic field to evolve and therefore need to level up in a specific area. However, the given area in these games is extremely counter-intuitive. One would guess the magnetic area is Blush Mountain, the area where the Geothermal Power Plant is located and some Electric-type Pokémon like Elekid, Togedemaru and Charjabug can be found. Instead, the magnetic area is Vast Poni Canyon, which isn't related to electricity at all.
    • The stats judge is first seen as very sleepy and brushes you off for not showing him something remarkable. The solution to wake him up is to hatch more than 20 eggs, something that his dialogue doesn't suggest at all.

    H to L 
  • Hair Color Spoiler: Lillie and Gladion are Lusamine's children, something that is evidenced by their identical hair and eye colors. Mohn, Lusamine's husband, shares these and has a hairstyle that resembles Gladion's.
  • Halfway Plot Switch: While visiting the first two islands, the Island Trials are the main focus of the game, with Team Skull members showing up from time to time. This changes during the adventures on the third island, where the plot with Team Skull and the Aether Foundation takes over the story, while the Island Trials simply happen to be on the way.
  • Hammerspace: A Magmar in Paniola Town gets a Quick Ball from "...well...somewhere!" and gives it to the player as a gift.
  • Harmless Electrocution: If you get the quiz questions wrong at the observatory, the security system will zap Sophocles. It's a far from pleasant experience, but he's perfectly fine afterward.
  • Haunted Technology:
    • Your Pokédex is designed to let a Rotom take over it. It acts as a Fairy Companion.
    • It's implied that the reason your Poké Finder starts up on its own (sending the view to first-person) in the abandoned Megamart is that Mimikyu briefly took over it.
  • Heroic Self-Deprecation: More than one:
    • Nanu isn't really a bad trainer or a bad cop, but he clearly doubts his abilities in both areas and it's left him in a deep blue funk as a result.
    • The Team Skull Grunts have serious self-esteem issues, one of many reasons they're in Team Skull. The ones guarding the door to their headquarters even assume you've come to mock them (which you have not).
    • Team Skull Admin Plumeria, despite being a powerful Trainer and a Cool Big Sis to her Grunts, has self-esteem issues herself. After her Heel–Face Turn, when she loses in subsequent Pokémon League Title Defenses against the Champion, she says, "I failed again...like I always do. I promised myself I wouldn't! I told myself I would never fail again!"
  • Hitbox Dissonance: Walking NPCs will stop and eventually turn around if you get in their way. You can stand at about arm's length away from them and still be a roadblock to them. At the mall in Hau'oli City, despite the entrance hallway being very wide, standing in the center causes every NPC coming in and out to halt and walk the other way.
  • Henpecked Husband: Downplayed - an elderly man in the Malie apparel shop tells you it's easier on him if he just lets his wife pick out his clothes.
  • Hero of Another Story: By the end of the main storyline, Lillie goes off to Kanto to start her own journey and to see if there is a way to fully purge Nihilego's toxins from Lusamine.
  • Hold the Line: Assuming that you can't defeat the mysterious Pokémon a.k.a. Nihilego at the Aether Foundation before a certain number of turns, "???" decides to turn tail and run, leading to victory by default. There is no penalty for letting it escape, aside from not getting any experience.
  • Hold Your Hippogriffs: The Hawaiian phrase Aloha, used in English as both a greeting and a farewell, becomes "Alola" in the Alola region.
  • Hotter and Sexier: Many of the female NPC and important adult characters look this way due to the lack of Super-Deformed sprites. Female adult characters like Plumeria and Olivia have quite the Sexy Walk going on, too. There's also a lot more adult sexual innuendo at times, too. That said, the fanservice is made to be much more self-aware at times in the story with it constantly pointing it out.
  • Horse of a Different Color: Trainers can now ride certain Pokémon around the region, which can be summoned at any time after they are made accessible, but will not be added to the player's party.
  • Hot-Blooded: Just like in Gen. VI, any of your Pokémon can be this during battle if they have enough Affection.
    [Pokémon] melted the ice with its fiery determination so that [Trainer] wouldn't worry!
  • Human Aliens: If you show the red-shirted man in Haina Desert a Solrock or Lunatone, he'll outright say that his home is in space and then teleport upward.
  • Humanoid Abomination: Some of the Ultra Beasts look eerily human.
  • Hurricane of Puns: The Poké Pelago island names are "Isle Abeens"note  (lure Wild Pokémon with beans), "Isle Aplenny"note  (grow berries), "Isle Aphun"note  (treasure-hunting), "Isle Evelup"note  (training and stat-boosting), and "Isle Avue"note  (raise Happiness and speed up egg-hatching).
  • I Can't Do This by Myself: A literal case: The ritual to evolve Nebby into either Solgaleo at the Altar of the Sunne or Lunala at the Altar of the Moone, depending on the game version requires two people to play the Sun and Moon Flutes at the same time.
  • I Got Bigger: Red and Blue, the two main characters from Pokémon Red and Blue, return as grown men.
  • Impending Doom P.O.V.:
    • The battle with the Totem Lurantis is preceded by a short scene from its POV as it approaches the player.
    • Sophocles' trial features several scenes set from the POV of the Totem Vikavolt as it's making its way to the trial site.
  • Impossibly Delicious Food: Rainbow-colored Poké Beans apparently are so delicious, feeding three of them to a Pokémon in Pokémon Refresh maxes out its affection.
  • Infinity -1 Sword: In addition to the Regional Pseudo-legendary, the Jangmo-o line, it is no exaggeration to say that Ash-Greninja and Wishiwashi's school forme are stronger that most of the region's actual legendaries.
  • Instant Costume Change: The device you get to summon a Pokémon mount also does this, switching your character's clothing to the appropriate a riding outfit. (Complete with helmet, by the way.) Notable in that this is the first time your trainer actually wears a swimsuit while traveling over water.
  • Instantly Proven Wrong: Some time after your second battle with Hau, Lillie will tell you that she'll keep a better eye on Nebby so it won't escape from her bag. Seconds later, Nebby creeps out from behind her.
  • Insurmountable Waist-High Fence: Some of the roadblocks are rather flimsy excuses, particularly because what used to pass with sprites and four directions no longer does as well with full 3D models and omnidirectional movement:
    • You can't exit Heahea City through the east exit directly outside the Pokémon Center at first because a trainer is using Stoutland Search, and his Stoutland refuses to move until it's checked the area thoroughly...ignoring the fact that the Stoutland blocks not even one-third of the road, and that's not counting the sidewalks, giving no reason why an on-foot trainer couldn't slip past.
    • A later example has two Sudowoodo blocking your way south from Paniola Ranch, forcing you to finish the first Akala Island Trial before you can make them move. However, they don't block the whole path, leaving a sizable gap...but said gap is blocked by a random kid trainer, who just comments on how annoying it is for the path to be blocked (and rewards you later when you send the Sudowoodo away). Possibly justified, as the Sudowoodo (if they aren't too set on trying to stand still and pass for trees) might move to block or attack anyone who attempted to squeeze past.
    • While Diglett's Tunnel is available as soon as you first set foot on Akala, Olivia herself prohibits you from venturing through most of the cave and into Konikoni City, limiting you to the small area around the Heahea entrance. She will stay there until Mallow's (Akala's third Captain) trial in Lush Jungle is completed.
  • Interface Screw: If you listen to the Abandoned Thrifty Megamart music with headphones on, there's an electronic drone throughout, and the music randomly cuts out in either channel, giving the impression your headphones are broken.
  • In-Universe Game Clock: Wild encounters once again differ depending on the time. Furthermore, while Sun functions as normal, Moon's in-game time is shifted twelve hours ahead of the player's, meaning it's night in-game when playing during the day and vice versa. Once you become the champion, you can use the Ultra Wormhole at the Altar to travel into the "world" of the other game. This allows you to instantly switch between night and day, no matter what time it is in real life.
  • Ironic Name: The names of the four Tapu ruins evoke this based on their location— The Ruins of Conflict are on the rather peaceful Melemele island; the Ruins of Life are next to a graveyard on Akala island; the Ruins of Abundance are past a seemingly endless desert on Ula'ula island; and the Ruins of Hope are on the Poni Breaker coast, which has black, volcanic soil everywhere, and is near the ruthless Vast Poni Canyon. However, they're also Meaningful Names because they match the nature of its resident.
  • Jungle Japes: The Lush Jungle on Akala Island, which is the largest dungeon area the player encounters by the time they reach it, a natural maze.
  • King Mook: Totem Pokémon, who are faced at the end of a trial. They are bigger and stronger than usual and can summon allies to aid them.
  • Knight, Knave and Squire: The player, Gladion, and Hau respectively.
    • The player, being The Hero, naturally fits the Knight archetype.
    • Gladion is a loner who relies on his own strength and his only aim to become stronger, fitting the Knave archetype.
    • Hau is by far the most optimistic of the three and started his journey at pretty much the same time as the player.
  • Knight of Cerebus:
    • Totem Mimikyu's trial marks a darker tone shift that lasts right until Lusamine is defeated for the second time.
    • Lusamine, when she reveals her true nature, is easily among the darkest villains in the mainstream games to date, if not the whole franchise. And surprisingly, she's as tragic as much as she is evil.
    • Guzma surprisingly comes off as this. In contrast to his goofy grunts, the boss of Team Skull is actually intimidating due to his violent and erratic nature.
    • The Ultra Beasts are unlike any Pokémon in the series; their alien nature makes them terrifying opponents. In particular, the first one you encounter (at Aether Paradise) is also the first genuinely threatening villain the player meets.
  • Last Disc Magic: The Move Relearner sets up shop in Mt. Lanikala, just outside the Pokémon League. This is because the Move Relearner now teaches all moves that a Pokémon can naturally learn regardless of its level.
  • Last Lousy Point: Zygarde Cells/Cores can easily become this if you just pick them up along the way if you're trying to track them down in the postgame - especially since some of them will only show up during daytime or nighttime, and the game doesn't bother telling you this.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: When the official website updated its Pokédex, it made no effort to hide the Ultra Beasts, their names, and the fact that they're not distinct entities from Pokémon as one is led to believe. Nor does it hide the fact that Solgaleo and Lunala are related to Cosmog, and by extension, each other through evolution.
  • Later Installment Weirdness:
    • Instead of HM moves needed to navigate the field, the player can summon Ride Pokémon to navigate around Alola. Tauros and Sharpedo can smash through rocks, Lapras and Sharpedo can be used to surf, Charizard can fly, and Machamp pushes heavy boulders. The old HM moves still exist for battle use, but as TM moves instead.
    • It's no longer possible to use any moves outside of battle at all, even non-HM moves like Sweet Scent and Dig.
    • There are no Gyms in the game, with the token of plot advancement instead being the Island Trials. Gym badges are replaced with Z-Crystals.
    • A Bicycle isn't available in this game as the player can ride Tauros and Stoutland, who move pretty fast.
    • Fishing is only possible in certain bodies of water, and even then it can only be done in certain spots.
    • There is no Pokémon Day Care in the games at all. The closest thing is the Pokémon Nursery in Paniola Ranch, which exists only to breed Pokémon. Instead, Trainers who want to train Pokémon not currently in their party have to use the Poké Pelago, which is an in-game function slightly similar to Gen V's Pokémon Dream World.
    • There is no Itemfinder or Dowsing Machine in the games. It is replaced by Stoutland.
    • Trainer battles have animation that has evolved to the point where the opposing trainer is on screen during the entire battle, as opposed to the beginning and end. It more resembles Pokémon Colosseum than a typical handheld Pokémon game.
    • The PC is now used exclusively for storing Pokémon. In previous games, it could also be used to see the Hall of Fame, and to have the Pokédex appraised. The Hall of Fame is now seen by talking to a man outside the Pokémon League, while the Pokédex has a built-in appraisal system.
  • Layman's Terms: In the post-game Ultra Beasts story, Looker and Anabel explain that your first mission is to capture UB-01 Symbiont. Your character doesn't understand what that means, so they attempt to put it in layman's terms by saying it's Nihilego's code name. You still don't get it, so they explain outright that it's the Ultra Beast that you first encountered in the Aether Foundation.
  • Leaning on the Fourth Wall:
    • Pikachu's popularity started picking up twenty years ago, according to game lore. That's when the first Pokémon games were released and Pikachu started capturing the hearts of players.
    • The shirt that Red wears says "96" - Pokémon Red and Blue were released in 1996.
    • An Aether Foundation employee talking to a Poliwhirl who's hogging the water cooler says that its HP must be full by now, one of the rare in-story references to Pokémon health represented by discrete points.
    • Early in the game Hau mentions he could hear you walking and recognized you by the sound of your footsteps. Your character is notably the only character in the entire game to have a sound effect when they move (even if they're simply turning around), regardless of what footwear you have on.
  • Left the Background Music On: Two examples in Sophocles' trial:
    • When his device knocks out the power to the Hokulani Observatory, the BGM goes as well.
    • The final question in the trial is "What appears when you hear this music?" Then the Totem Pokémon Leitmotif starts playing.
  • Leitmotif: There is a different one for each of the four islands. In each case, the base song plays in the first grassy route you reach on that island. Certain important characters, like Lusamine and Guzma, have their own, too.
  • Lemony Narrator: Some of the Pokédex entries are quite casual, snarky, or otherwise unprofessional in tone compared to previous games. And since this Pokédex is the first one in the series to truly be sentient, we should know where all the flavor might be coming from.
    Gengar: Should you feel yourself attacked by a sudden chill, it is evidence of an approaching Gengar. There is no escaping it. Give up.
  • Lethal Joke Weapon: Splash, Celebrate, and Hold Hands, moves that normally do nothing, become this with a Normalium-Z. Z-Splash boosts Attack by 3 stages if used this way, while Z-Celebrate and Z-Hold Hands boosts every stat by 1 stage.
  • Lethal Lava Land: Wela Volcano Park is an active volcano and is home to many Fire Pokémon as well as Kiawe's Fire-type trial.
  • Letterbox: If the player gets close to an NPC that will battle them, the screen will narrow, focusing on the player and the NPC while the rest of the screen is black.
  • Light Is Not Good: The Team Skull members are pretty dark and are clearly criminals. However, they're only the secondary bad guys, the actual villains being a group with spotlessly clean suits with predominantly white and gold colors, who maintain a place where is seems to exude brightness and radiance. They even use it as a shelter for endangered Pokémon, who seem rather happy and content on the surface.
  • Limit Break: Z-Moves, which are powerful moves that can be performed by Pokémon once per battle, if the trainer has a Z-Ring and Z-Crystal. Some Pokémon, like Snorlax and Alolan Raichu, have their own personal Z-Moves.
  • Loophole Abuse: Normally, the trainers at the Battle Buffet can only be fought once a day. However, if the player leaves before 10 turns have passed, then the player can start over from the beginning, allowing players to use the Battle Buffet as much as they want.
  • Luminescent Blush:
    • Both male and female Sightseers sport this.
    • Professor Burnet blushes as she leaves the Ruins of Life, wondering (or perhaps "wondering") who the Masked Royal is.

    M to N 
  • Magikarp Power: A few examples:
    • The trope namer Magikarp itself is available as always and still provides a great example.
    • Wishiwashi is pathetically weak until Lv 20, whereupon entering battle it grows into a monstrous form with greatly heightened attacking and defensive stats. It's similar to Magikarp in a sense, though it's a form change rather than an evolution, and like Magikarp, the player has to deal with its weak attacking stats to get it to Lv 20. Its stat total is 175, the lowest in the series, but in its Schooling Form, it jumps up to a beastly 620, which is higher than most Legendaries.
    • While Grubbin and its evolved from, Charjabug, have decent enough stats, but its special attack is nothing compared to what it becomes as a Vikavolt. You're likely to get a Charjabug before you leave the first island, but it only evolves into Vikavolt at Vast Poni Canyon on the fourth island, one of the final areas of the game. You can mitigate this by giving it an Eviolite and heightening its already decent defenses, however.
    • The Mareanie line is this from the defensive side of things. As a Mareanie, its overall stats are pretty underwhelming, but once it evolves into a Toxapex, it will receive a huge boost in both its Defense and Special Defense stats (which is a flat 90 in each), turning it into a formidable Stone Wall.
    • Salandit is underwhelming, but Salazzle is quite fast and she has a great Special Attack stat. In order to make use of Salazzle though, you have to look for a female Salandit, but the Pokémon's gender ratio of 8 to 1 means that you have a 12.5% chance of encountering a female one.
    • The Bounsweet line, like the Ralts-line beforehand, has quite mediocre stats, but upon fully evolving into Tsareena, all of its stats skyrocket.
    • Wimpod and Golisopod as well: Wimpod has poor stats except for Speed. Unlike Magikarp, Wimpod is capable of learning more than three offensive attacks, ensuring it isn't dead weight during training. However, Wimpod's only attacks by level up are Struggle Bug and Sand Attack, the former of which uses its inferior Special Attack (compared to its Attack), making leveling up without triggering Wimp Out or using TMs on it difficult. It's not so wimpy anymore once it evolves into Golisopod.
    • The ultimate example of this trope is Cosmog. Like Magikarp, it has the same pitiful overall stats of 200. At level 43, it evolves into Cosmoem, increasing both its Defense and Special Defense stats by 100 points, but at this point, it only knows Splash, Teleport, and Cosmic Power. However, all of this changes when it reaches level 53, where it evolves into Solgaleo (in Sun) or Lunala (in Moon), becoming a powerhouse as Legendary Pokémon tend to be.
  • Meaningful Name: While the names of the Tapu ruins are ironic in regards to their location, they do reflect the nature of their residents: the Ruins of Conflict is home to Tapu Koko, who likes to fight; the Ruins of Life is home to Tapu Lele, whose scales can cure people; the Ruins of Abundance is home to Tapu Bulu, who can help plants grow; and the Ruins of Hope is home to Tapu Fini, who inspires hope that it can heal people.
    • Alternatively, others argue that the ruins are meant to be a series of Ironic Names. Tapu Koko lives in the Ruins of Conflict, but is seen fending off the Ultra Beasts (even if its intent was to just fight them) and rescues the player from falling, removing them from conflict. Tapu Lele lives in the Ruins of Life, but holds little regard for the living. Tapu Bulu lives in the Ruins of Abundance, but destroyed Tapu Village. The Ruins of Abundance are also in a desert, a very arid play. Finally, Tapu Fini lives in the Ruins of Hope, but because of the fog, it is essentially hopeless to track it down.
    • Elio and Selene (The protagonists of Sun and Moon)'s name come from the Greek gods Helios and Selene, the sun and moon god respectively.
  • Mega Corp.: The Aether Foundation is a corporation made to protect Pokémon.
  • Męlée ŕ Trois: In a Battle Royal, four Trainers are pitted against each other at the same time with one Pokémon out each, and they can target anyone on the field. The battle is over when any one Trainer has run out of Pokémon, and the winner is determined by number of opponents knocked out. A Trainer whose Pokémon have all fainted can't win even if they have the most KOs.
  • Menswear Ghetto: Like in X and Y, male and female characters have roughly equal number of articles of clothing, but choices for males are restricted to a handful of styles in different colors (shorts, tees, tanks, sneakers, backpacks, and baseball caps), while female characters have more to choose from. Female characters also have more hairstyle options and can change their bangs.
  • Mid Boss: A new game feature introduced in this Generation are the "Route Bosses," aka the toughest trainer on a route. They will only battle you if you have already beaten all the other trainers on the route and their team employ tactics you'd often seen in the competitive scene.
  • Milking the Giant Cow: All NPCs have an animation they do as they speak, which usually involves waving their arms. They can come off as over-acting when they don't have much to say or the player keeps their dialogue box open long after they should've finished, and they keep making their motions even when the text describes an action, not diologue. Team Skull Grunts' animations are especially dramatic, doing wild gesticulations like stereotypical gang bangers.
  • Money Spider:
    • Post-game, you can meet Sightseer Marcus at Seafolk village and battle him. He only has one Pokémon (a shiny Exeggcute which is pretty easy to beat) but when you defeat him, he gives you six Nuggets!
    • Some trainers in the Battle Buffet are this, which in conjunction with the Amulet Coin and quitting before finishing 10 turns to bypass the 'once a day' limit allows you to rack up money quite fast, especially after becoming champion, when all Trainers have much higher leveled Pokémon and pay much more. The biggest example would be Madame Kathleen, who pays 22000 post-game, as much as a member of Elite Four and only has Delibird in her team. Gentleman Ronald pays about as much.
  • Multi-Mook Melee: The SOS mechanic means that any wild Pokémon encounter has a chance of going off the rails and becoming one.
  • Musical Spoiler: Subtly done with Guzma's battle theme, which contains a short, distorted snippet of the Aether Foundation theme, hinting that he's working for them. This video explains it in detail.
  • My Name Is ???: The Ultra Beasts appear as "???" in battle until they are caught and registered in the Pokédex. Importantly, Looker and his team have given each of them codenames before they are caught. The only exception during the main story is Nihilego which is UB-01.
  • Mysterious Backer: Lillie at first seems to fill this role, being a ditzy, emotional, and confused type who follows the player on their journey. In this case, however, her personality should be taken at face value. The Pokémon she carries, on the other hand...That's a little different.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • The Alolan Rite of Passage has several similarities to the anime-exclusive Orange League.
    • Alolan Raichu's light blue eyes and Surfer Dude theme may be a reference to Puka, an aged surfing Pikachu that appeared way back in a Filler episode during the Indigo League in the anime. Another possibility is that it is a reference to the tendency for some games to depict Pikachu on a surfboard should it use Surf.
    • The Snorlax Z-Move, Pulverizing Pancake, looks like a souped-up version of what Snorlax does as a Poké Ball Pokémon in Super Smash Bros..
    • The Poké Finder is said to make taking photos "a snap!".
    • One of the pictures in Totem Mimikyu's room appears to depict Ash Ketchum in his Original Series outfit with his Pikachu.
    • At the beginning of the game, Nebby is being attacked by a flock of Spearow, and you try to defend it, and shortly afterwards Nebby creates a giant explosion to try to defeat them. After being rescued, you are treated to the sight of a rare Legendary Pokémon. Sounds familiar?
    • Female Sightseers have smartphones, and at the beginning of a battle, they swipe the screen in a way that suggests they're playing Pokémon Go.
    • In several early games of the franchise, a female Swimmer trainer would claim she was a mermaid before the battle started. In this game, swimmer Alexandria on Route 15 quips, "I'm not a mermaid, I'm a trainer in a bikini!" (Maybe because she likes to flaunt it?)
    • Professor Burnet gives the player the Reveal Glass; in her debut in Pokémon Dream Radar, the player's goal is to catch the very Pokémon that use it (Tornadus, Thundurus and Landorus).
    • The Pokémon Breeder trainer class resembles the Rancher and Cowgirl trainer class from Pokémon Diamond and Pearl. Similarly the Backpacker looks exactly like the female Backpackers from Pokémon Black and White, with the same pose and all.
  • Nepotism: Molayne mentions that due to "some, er, unusual circumstances" on Ula'Ula Island, he appointed a Trial Captain instead of leaving the job to the Island Kahuna. While assuring himself and Sophocles that he made the right choice, he brings up that they're cousins, suggesting that he's aware he may be biased during selection.
  • Nerf:
    • A number of healing items have had their effects reduced: Fresh Water has been reduced from 50 HP to 30 HP, Soda Pop has been reduced from 60 HP to 50 HP, Lemonade has been reduced from 80 HP to 70 HP, and Hyper Potions have been reduced from 200 HP to 120 HP.
    • The Paralysis status effect now only drops the Speed of afflicted Pokémon by half instead of quartering it.
    • The Burn status deals less damage to afflicted Pokémon. They only lose 1/16 of their total health at the end of each turn instead of 1/8. This also has a side effect of increasing the longevity of Pokémon with Guts and a Flame Orb.
    • The Confused status now has a 1/3 chance of causing a Pokémon to hurt itself instead of 1/2 like previous games.
    • The second hit dealt by Parental Bond deals 1/4 damage compared to first hit, rather than 1/2 as it does back in Generation VI.
    • Bar some specific exceptions, moves given priority by the ability Prankster will now fail against Dark-types.
    • The ability Gale Wings now only works when the user is at full HP, compared to how in Generation VI the HP didn't matter.
    • Pixilate, Refrigerate, and Aerilate now boost the Normal moves they convert by 20% instead of 30%.
    • Gengar has Cursed Body as its ability instead of Levitate, so it's now susceptible to Ground-type moves like it was back in the first two generations. On the other hand, it will now get to enjoy the benefits of various Terrains if necessary, while also being able to absorb Toxic Spikes to support its team.
    • Several abilities and a new Terrain, Psychic Terrain, are introduced that prevent priority moves from working.
    • Dark Void's accuracy has been reduced from 80% to 50%. In addition, it only works if Darkrai uses it, or a Pokémon impersonating Darkrai through Transform or Impostor. If anything that isn't functionally Darkrai uses Dark Void, it will fail.note 
    • Tackle's Power has been decreased from 50 to 40, bringing it back in line with other early moves such as Pound and Scratch.
    • Sucker Punch's power has gone down from 80 to 70.
    • Thunder Wave was previously 100% accurate. Now it's 90%.
    • Field moves like Teleport, Sweet Scent or Dig are no longer usable outside of battles, limiting their uses.
    • Destiny Bond, instead of activating every time it's used, now runs on the same accuracy counter as Detect, Protect, and Endure: The more times in a row it's used, the less likely the move will be executed.
    • The Soul Dew now only boosts the power of Psychic- and Dragon-type moves by 20% when held by Latias/Latios instead of boosting Special Attack and Special Defense by 50%.
    • When a Pokémon Mega Evolves, the game checks for the Pokémon's new Ability and Speed during that turn, not the turn after. For most Mega Evolutions, this is a big boost (see Balance Buff above), but for a few Mega Evolutions, like Mega Ampharos and Mega Garchomp, this means they don't get the benefit of their higher Speed on their first turns. Mega Sableye is nerfed in a different way in that it used to be able to use both Prankster and Magic Bounce during the turn it Mega Evolves, but now it can only use Magic Bounce.
  • Nature Is Not Nice: Sun and Moon have a lot of dark Pokédex entries. Almost every one seems to revolve around Pokémon hunting or attacking each other (or humans). Hau outright mentions that nature can be scary.
  • Never Bare Headed: Averted for the first time in the main games outside specific circumstances: players will finally be able to completely remove their hats via character customization. Lampshaded, however, in that the player's Nice Hat is the first piece of equipment he/she receives, and is complimented on by your mentor.
  • Never My Fault: Lusamine thinks of her children as ungrateful for running away from her, even though she was horribly controlling towards them.
  • Never Say "Die": Averted. "Death" and similar terms are used freely just like in Red and Blue, as are religious terms such as "god" and "demon" for the first time in the series (presumably because of their use in other family-friendly Nintendo games such as The Legend of Zelda and the Pokémon-featuring Super Smash Bros.). Type: Null is even referred to as the "Beast Killer".
  • New Transfer Student: Some Japanese ads for the games involve a Japanese boy moving to Hawaii and bonding with local children over the games. This mirrors the actual game, where the player character is a boy/girl from Kanto who has just moved into Alola.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh:
    • Lusamine and Professor Burnet both laugh this way, though Burnet comes off as endearing.
    • Among the Pokémon, Tsareena has one that is adorable.
  • No Fair Cheating: If a trade is interrupted, networking features of the game are temporarily disabled. While it doesn't entirely take care of Pokémon cloning (easy to do in the previous games by interrupting a trade at the right moment) , it does make attempting to clone Pokémon much, much more tedious.
  • Noisy Nature: In any area where wild Pokémon can be encountered, their cries will play once in a while, sometimes over each other.
  • Non-Action Guy: Rotom does not battle any Pokémon, nor do any of the Ride Pokémon.
  • Noob Cave: Verdant Cavern, home of Illima's trial.
  • No OSHA Compliance: The original bridge to the Ruins of Conflict was terribly built, with multiple large gaps between the planks and very low handrails. In addition, while the bridges over the Vast Poni Canyon lack the gaps, they have no handrails at all.
  • No-Sell:
    • Starting this generation, Dark-type Pokémon are unaffected by moves that would gain priority from Prankster, presumably because as Combat Pragmatists, they can see right through the trickery.
    • Two new Abilities, Dazzling and Queenly Majesty, prevent priority moves from taking effect.
  • No Sense of Personal Space:
    • Bewear is a Cuddle Bug and just wants to give people hugs. Since it can snap spines without meaning to, its nature makes it incredibly dangerous.
    • Guzma's talking animation shows him leaning forward and getting up in people's faces.
  • Nostalgia Level:
    • The Battle Tree where the player can fight Red and Blue.
    • The main bridge in Malie Garden has people situated in a way that mimics the Nugget Bridge Trainers from Pokémon Red and Blue. The Veteran at the end of the bridge even repeats the Rocket Grunt's offer to join Team Rocket ad verbatim - and he's even implied to be the very same person, having turned over a new leaf but enjoying messing with people through his past. The Trainers' teams consist of Pokémon from those games, including ones that aren't native to Alola, such as Ekans.
  • Notice This: Items on the ground shine, and Nectar and Zygarde cores sparkle. Items dropped from Preexisting Encounters and broken rocks aren't seen, but they sparkle and make sounds, and the player is prompted to press A to pick them up.
  • Not So Different: Guzma attempts to cozy up to Kukui by playing on their shared background of being "fellow rejects who never could become captains." Kukui rejects this by stating that he could have become a captain at any time but just simply chose a different path.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: The seventh Trial really isn't much of a trial at all. Your sole task seems to be walking down a long, cave corridor, battling two regular Pokémon, and grabbing the Z-Stone from a pedestal. All while dealing with an ominous, ever-increasing feeling something is watching you. And sure enough, the Totem Pokémon appears once you reach the pedestal.

    O to R 
  • Obvious Rule Patch:
    • Bruxish. A Water-type with an ability that nullifies priority attacks? Clearly an answer to the rise of Talonflame during Generation VI, by making a Pokémon that negates its priority Flying moves and resists its Fire moves.
    • Gale Wings only works if the Pokémon using it has full HP. This is done to prevent Talonflame from spamming Brave Bird, a powerful move that does recoil damage to the user.
    • The move Dark Void was nerfed due to complaints from the competitive VGC community about the move running rampant during the '16 ruleset. It will now fail unless the user is Darkrai to prevent Smeargle (who can copy any move in the game permanently and is tournament-legal, unlike Darkrai) from abusing it, and its accuracy is reduced to 50%.
    • Rayquaza loses its ability to Mega Evolve if it's holding a Z-Crystal. Makes sense, since being able to both Mega Evolve and use a Z-move would allow it to practically one-shot anything that looked at it funny.
    • Pokémon transferred from Red, Blue, or Yellow will always have their Hidden Ability if they have one. Considering Machamp could learn Fissure in Generation 1 and can have No Guard as a normal ability, this could have been done to prevent this combination from wrecking nearly everything.
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • When rescuing Lillie from Aether Paradise, Faba confronts the player and allies. After confirming Faba has the key to the President's office, Hau points out that if Faba had just hidden, the heroes wouldn't have had a chance to get that key from him. Cue this reaction from Faba.
    • Gladion's reaction when Nanu appears at the Malie ferry terminal might also count, seeing as the former is associated with a gang of delinquents and the latter is a cop. Luckily, Nanu's only there to challenge the player as the island kahuna.
  • Old Save Bonus: Pokémon Bank and Pokémon Transporter have compatibility for transferring your Mons from Pokémon X and Y, Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire, Pokémon Black and White, and Pokémon Black 2 and White 2note  returns, and now includes transfers for the Virtual Console versions of Red/Blue/Yellow. The 2017 Virtual Console releases of ''Gold and Silver will also become compatible at some point, making it possible to receive Pokémon from all generations in this game.
    • The National Dex, absent from Sun and Moon, is present on the Bank, and uses the combined Pokédex information of all games used with it, so players don't need to transfer/breed every Pokémon all over again in every game.
    • When a Pokémon is transferred from Red/Blue/Yellow to Sun/Moon, they will be given at least three maximum IVs (due to IVs being completely overhauled from Generation III onward), their nature, determined by how much EXP they have, as well as their Hidden Ability, if they have one.
  • Older Than They Look:
    • Lusamine looks like she's in her late teens or early 20s, when she's actually in her 40s.
    • During the Eevium Z sidequest, most of the trainers you fight are elderly people who look their age. The Leafeon trainer, however, has the appearance of a female Swimmer, due to using multiple medical treatments.
  • Olympus Mons: Sun and Moon introduced a slew of new Pokémon that fit most of the criteria that most "Legendary Pokémon" from previous games follow, but at the same time, they don't fit them all, leading to some confusion over whether they actually count or not:
    • The Tapu are guardians of the islands and serve the same role as Legendary Pokémon story-wise, but you can use them in battle facilities and official competitions where other Legendaries (at least "major" ones like Kyogre and Zekrom) are not. They also haven't been officially stated to be Legendaries.
    • The Ultra Beasts are Pokémon from an alternate dimension, and while they display the same awesome power Legendaries typically possess, they're regular Pokémon in their own dimension.
    • Type: Null and Silvally are stated to be a one-time experiment, with only three specimens ever being created, but Type: Null evolves into Silvally and one of them is used by Gladion.
    • All of these Pokémon (The Tapu, Ultra Beasts and Silvally) are incapable of breeding but their base stat total is at 570, which is actually a little weaker then the typical 580 to 600+ Legendaries from past games tend to have, but still generally stronger then most regular non-Legenderies.
    • The only Gen VII Pokémon that can be classified as proper Legendaries both stat-wise and lore-wise could be Solgaleo, Lunala and Necrozma but even Solgaleo and Lunala are unique in that they're both related via evolution and their earlier forms are quite weak on their own. No word yet on where Necrozma fits in.
  • One Game for the Price of Two: As is tradition for the series, the games have differences in catchable Pokémon and minor differences in plot, but will ultimately be extremely similar.
  • One Head Taller: The Mystery Gift deliveryman is noticeably one head taller than just about every other NPC in the Pokémon Center, most likely to make his appearance eye-catching so the player won't forget to pick up their gift.
  • One-Hit KO: While there are no new moves or abilities introduced this generation relating to one-hit knockouts, the Battle Buffet at Hau'oli City promotes this strategy. There's more to the buffet than simply battling one diner per turn, but it's much easier to get the highest satisfaction rating by knocking out Pokémon in a single hit, thus getting as many dishes as possible.
  • Only in It for the Money: The Swimmer Girls Kylie and Ashlyn have jobs in Kalos making the HMs Surf and Waterfall, but their production is state mandated, and are given to trainers for free. They came to Alola because the Pokémon Ride system renders HMs redundant, so they figured they could sell them as regular TMs. Ironically, they give you the TMs for free because they were making promotional material to show off the moves and needed someone to battle.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: [[spoiler:Looker and Anabel outright say that if the Ultra Beasts can't be helped, they'll need to be destroyed. Of course, this being a Pokémon game, you can't actually do that.
  • Orange/Blue Contrast: The games' logos are primarily red/orange and purple/blue. Also applies to the color schemes of the Legendary Mons.
  • Orphaned Etymology: Hau at one point talks about getting "Chicken Skin" — a Hawaiian idiom — in a universe where regular chickens don't exist.
  • Our Wormholes Are Different: A major plot point in the game is the appearance of strange wormholes around Alola that are dubbed "Ultra Wormholes". The wormholes that appear in the game connect to an alternate dimension known as "Ultra Space" and bring forth extra dimensional Pokémon known as "Ultra Beasts". Cosmog and its kin (AKA, Solgaleo and Lunala) are capable of creating these wormholes to freely travel from dimension to dimension. It is also implied that these wormholes also connect to other Alternate Universes and people have also traveled through these wormholes but little explanation is given and a side effect includes acute amnesia. These wormholes are also connected to the Island Trials in that Totem Pokémon and Z-crystals are stated to get their power from energy that leaks from the wormholes.
  • Outside-Context Problem: Ultra Beasts, a series of creatures that apparently aren't actually Pokémon, and are said to be major threats to humans and Pokémon alike.
  • Overly Long Fighting Animation: The Z-Moves all have animations that go on for nearly 20 seconds, as opposed to the few seconds that normal moves take.
  • Overly Long Gag: Post-game, there's a man who will battle you in order to show off his shiny golden Exeggcute. After you win, he gives you some gifts that represent his beloved Pokémon: six Big Nuggets. He hands them to you one at a time, with the receiving and putting-away animations and "item obtained" dings playing each time.
  • Overly Nervous Flop Sweat: The new animations for Pursuit and Astonish have the target erupt a shower of sweat drops while being pursued or when hit by the attacker.
  • Palmtree Panic: Alola, being a tropical region, naturally has a lot of coastline. Exeggutor Island fits the trope especially well, as an island in the shape of a palm tree Pokémon.
  • Parents as People: Hapu mentions the trope almost verbatim at the Altar of the Sunne/Moone, but notes that children are people too, and that they ought to be able to tell one another how they feel.
  • Perpetual Smiler: The protagonist is seldom seen without a smile on his/her face, no matter the circumstances. The demo was even worse about this, as the player character wouldn't stop smiling even when a giant, enraged Hakamo-o ran towards him and roared in front of his face.
  • Pińata Enemy: Preexisting Encounters have a chance to drop items to collect in the overworld after battle. An NPC even states Wimpod drops valuable items in an attempt to distract its pursuer.
  • Plot Coupon: Eleven of the eighteen type-specific Z-crystals are obtained as rewards for completing trials and are necessary to proceed with the adventure, effectively replacing badges in this game. The remaining seven are either given to the player during cutscenes, or are optional and well-hidden.
  • Point of No Return: Once you start a Trial, you can't leave the complex until you finish it. You can't capture Pokémon there either during the Trial, something Captain Ilima conveniently doesn't tell you until after you start it. A rule of thumb is that the presence of Trial Gates should clue you in on when you should save your game.
  • Police Are Useless: One of them has a post-battle overworld quote that's Leaning on the Fourth Wall in regards to this.
    NPC Police Officer: Alola is pretty peaceful, so it's okay to be weak.
  • Pokémon Speak: In full effect in the German version, with opinions split on whether this is good or bad.
  • Poor Communication Kills: When you begin making your way to the Team Skull base in Po Town, you can talk to a Grunt who's gesticulating wildly to another across a hedge, wondering why he isn't coming over to fight you. Later, after going through the Shady House to speak to the other Grunt, he doesn't know why the first Grunt is staring at him and thinks he's complimenting his "hot" appearance.
  • Pop Quiz:
    • Kiawe's Trial involves watching Marowak dance and then having to pick out the one that performed different, but it dissolves into nothing but a series of trick questions.
    • After the power is knocked out in Hokulani Observatory, the player has to break out of the Observatory's security system, which involves correctly guessing certain sounds.
    • A Team Skull Grunt in the Shady House guards the path to Guzma. He asks you to answer three questions about Guzma correctly, but to actually complete it, there is an additional step: you have to answer "No" to the "confirmation" question after you correctly answer the previous three questions.
  • Port Town: Alola has a number of them being a region of islands. The biggest is Heahea City on Akala Island.
  • Power Up Mount: The ability to ride Pokémon from X and Y is back. This time, most of them have saddles on their back. This feature has been expanded upon, as the rideable Pokémon can be called from anywhere instead of only being available in specific routes, and allow the player to reach and explore areas they couldn't access on their own.
  • Pstandard Psychic Pstance: Featured in the gestures for Psychic-type Z-Moves.
  • Psychotic Smirk: Lusamine sports one, especially whenever an Ultra Beast appears on-screen.
  • Pun:
    • The Fighting-type specialist is the kahuna of Melemele Island, which would be pronounced like "melee melee". Meanwhile, the kahuna of Poni Island is never seen without her Mudsdale, a horse Pokémon.
    • The drink Tapu Cocoa sounds exactly like Tapu Koko, the guardian deity of Melemele Island.
      • In Japanese, the drink is Enecocoa, a pun on Eneconote 
    • Hala makes one with his own name before a rematch with him.
    "Old Hala is here to make you holler!"
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: When you fulfill requirements for learning new battle styles, the man who teaches them says, "One! Two! Three! Here's! The! Pose!" while accompanied by an Audible Sharpness sound effect.
  • Rainbow Motifs: As to be expected from a region based on Hawaiinote , there's plenty of rainbows to be seen:
    • Professor Kukui has a rainbow on his hat.
    • The intro flash for a wild or normal trainer battle has a rainbow lens flare.
    • When you battle the Trial Captains, they have rainbow backgrounds in their battle intro screens.
    • After you and Lillie take shelter from a sudden rainstorm while on Exeggutor Island, a rainbow appears if this cutscene happens during the day.
    • While in development, Sun and Moon were also under the codename Pokémon Rainbow.
    • The top tier Poké Beans available are rainbow ones, and it only takes three to max out affection.
    • The Alolan greeting involves people moving their hands from head- to waist-level in the shape of a rainbow.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Some of the new Pokédex entries don't shy away from mentioning the natural order is in full effect when it comes to Pokémon, like openly discussing that Gumshoos attacks Rattata with the intention of eating them, or that Toxapex rips off Corsola bits for food, though they do regrow. A few entries also make it clear that owning certain Mons can be very dangerous, such as Bewear's Moon entry stating that trainers have "left the world" from having their spines shattered by overenthusiastic hugging.
    • In the spirit of natural order, sometimes in SOS battles, a Pokémon may call in a helper who is actually a predator of theirs, causing the "help" to start attacking them instead.
    • Your character, who given Alola's tropical climate can only wear light clothing, will shiver and quake when standing on the perpetually snowy Mount Lanakila.
    • Once all of the Eevee users grew up, they couldn't spend all their time training Pokémon any more and had to focus on their families and/or jobs, like any other adult. Being a Pokémon Trainer is not a feasible career option for most people.
  • Reality Is Unrealistic:
    • Mount Lanakila is snow-capped - in a tropical region. This actually sounds very weird, except that it's actually based on Mauna Kea, a real life mountain in Hawai'i that experiences seasonal ice caps.
    • Part of the reason behind fans being confused about Mudsdale was that it was introduced first (before its pre-evolution, Mudbray), and even then, some thought it was too big to be a horse. Actually, the Clydesdale horse is indeed around the size of a Mudsdale.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Lillie gives one to Lusamine in Ultra Space when she is told that she's not worthy of her love for not being beautiful enough...and then Lusamine gives one back to the player!
  • Red Herring: Despite initial appearances, Team Skull isn't the main antagonistic organisation of this generation; That title goes to the Aether Foundation. In fact, with a possible exception of Teams Aqua and Magma, they're the first team that doesn't have some sort of supervillain plan.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni:
    • Solgaleo and Lunala, from what we've seen of them. Solgaleo is frequently shown roaring, while Lunala seems to be more serene.
    • Inverted with Litten and Popplio. Litten is a Fire-type and red-colored, but is The Stoic, while Popplio is a Water-type and blue-colored, but is clownish and fun-loving. The Grass starter Rowlet is in the middle. Played straight with their final evolutions; the red-colored Incineroar is a Large Ham Boisterous Bruiser, while the blue-colored Primarina is serene, beautiful and calm.
  • Rescue Arc: After defeating Guzma in Po Town, Lillie and Nebby get kidnapped, and Gladion "recruits" you and Hau into invading Aether Paradise to save them. And a direct sequel to that would be you and Lillie travelling through Vast Poni Canyon to reach the Altar of the Sun/Moone, to save Lusamine and Guzma from Ultra Space.
  • Retool:
    • Gyms were a mainstay of the main Pokémon games. This time around, Alola does not have a Gym system and instead they've been replaced by island challenges given by trial captains and Island Kahunas. One of the fundamental changes is that you battle 4 Kahunas instead of 8 gyms.
    • Another aspect that's different from previous games are the Z-Crystals. These serve as both proof that you've completed a trial successfully (similar to Badges) and are also used in powering up your Pokémon in battle (Much like Mega Stones). In addition, the trials often pit you against a powered-up wild Pokémon as opposed to another trainer and their team.
    • In addition, HMs are no longer needed for overworld travel, having been replaced by the Pokémon Ride system, where you can call a variety of Pokémon to do tasks for you. Tauros and Sharpedo replace Rock Smash on land and water, respectively; Lapras and Sharpedo replace Surf; Machamp replaces Strength; and Charizard replaces Fly. There are even some items that are replaced by this function- a Stoutland is the replacement for the Dowsing Machine from previous games, and Tauros replaces the Bikes.
    • Unlike most examples, this isn't a sweeping change but rather due to Alola culture prohibiting Pokémon outside of Ride Pokémon from using HM moves outside of battle, as the NPCs who give the TMs for Fly, Surf and Waterfall found out.
  • Rhymes on a Dime: The two Team Skull Grunts inhabiting Po Town's Pokémon Center speak like this. It's certain that their lines aren't rehearsed, since they comment on your unexpected presence when you visit them again after Team Skull has disbanded.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: This being a Pokémon game, examples are abundant and inevitable, especially in Pokémon Refresh. Not even the Ultra Beasts are immune to this treatment.
  • Right Behind You: When you enter the hidden room of the old Thrifty Megamart, you're forced into first-person view using the Poké Finder. Mimikyu is waiting there behind you and attacks when you turn around and take its photo.
  • Road Apples: To obtain TM48 (Round), you have to help clean up Pokémon "trash" that's been left behind by a Pokémon Ride show in the Mall in Hau'oli City. With your bare hands. And considering that Tauros is in the Pokémon Ride lineup...
  • Running Gag:
    • The mother of the player character never finishes unpacking despite repeatedly saying she will (but also saying she dislikes it). The boxes are all still there at the end of the game.
    • In the post-game, whenever Looker leaves Anabel and the protagonist, he always runs back in after a while because he received a new report about an Ultra Beast. The first thing he says when he rushes back into the room is "This is a disaster!" in various languages.

    S 
  • Schrödinger's Question: When you first travel to Route 15 and meet Grimsley, he tells you he will flip a coin, and you must guess heads or tails. Choosing "heads" or "tails" leads to the same outcome: Grimsley congratulates you for guessing correctly and registers Sharpedo on your Ride Pager. If you pick "neither", he will admit that he was going to have a Skarmory snatch it out of the air, and he congratulates you for guessing correctly and registers Sharpedo on your Ride Pager.
  • Secret Art:
    • Most Z-Moves can be used by any Pokémon who knows a move that corresponds to the Z-Crystal they're holding, but some are unique to specific Pokémon, and require special Z-Crystals, like Pikachu (2 of them), Alolan Raichu, Eevee, Snorlax, Mew, (Snorlax and Mew's Z-Crystals are only available through an event) the island guardians (who all share one) and the final evolutions of the three Alola starters.
    • As usual in a Pokémon core series game, several regular exclusive attacks were introduced, such as Trop Kick for Tsareena and Shore Up for the Sandygast line. Others were changed between generations so Pokémon gained or lost exclusive moves. For instance, while Cut was an HM move from Gen. I-VI, there are no HMs in Alola, so Kartana became the only Pokémon capable of learning it.
    • Similarly, many of the new Pokémon and Alolan forms have unique abilities that are not present in other Pokémon, such as Stamina for the Mudbray line and Galvanize for the Alolan Geodude family.
  • Self-Contained Demo: The downloadable demo stars the male protagonist (named "Sun") as he arrives in Alola. He also receives an Ash-Greninja. The scenario is completely different from anything in the final game.
  • Sequel Difficulty Spike:
    • Perhaps in response to complaints of Pokémon X and Y, and more importantly Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, being on the easier side, Sun and Moon have a sharper difficulty curve and a number of tricks, particularly with the Totem Pokémon and Z-Moves, that lead to a significantly more difficult experience than the previous set of games if you don't over-level your teams. Over-leveling is also harder to do since the Anti-Grinding experience system from Black and White is back. And even when you do overlevel your teams, your opponents will most likely still have tricks up their sleeves that will give them an upper hand. It's gotten to the point where people believe these are the hardest Pokémon games besides Colosseum and Gale of Darkness.
    • The Battle Tree in the post game doesn't pull any punches. Unlike the Battle Maison, which typically had very easy (and somewhat boring) challenges for the first 10 or so matches, Battle Tree immediately starts with difficult trainers with fully evolved and smartly equipped Pokémon that can overwhelm an unprepared player. There are also random trainers that can use Z-Moves and even Mega Evolutions.
  • Sexy Discretion Shot: Downplayed with Solgaleo and Lunala. The Pokédex states that both are the male and female counterparts together, and if you bring them together at the Lake of the Sunne/Moone, the camera will pan to the sky as they produce a baby Cosmog. On the other hand, we don't know how they mate.
  • Shaped Like Itself:
    • Professor Kukui said that kahuna of Melemele Island looks like a kahuna. He wasn't wrong too.
    • One NPC calls their Slowpoke a slowpoke.
    • Not only is Exeggutor Island home to a lot of Alolan Exeggutor, it's also roughly shaped like one.
  • Shifting Sand Land: The Haina Desert on Ula'Ula Island, which leads up to the Ruins of Abundance. During the day, the desert is bathed in intense heat, and at night, there's a sandstorm. It's easy to get lost in the desert if one doesn't pay attention to the rock formations.
  • Ship Sinking: Before the game's release, people liked to ship Professor Kukui with various characters. It is eventually revealed that he's married to Professor Burnet.
  • Ship Tease:
    • It's hinted Lillie might have developed a crush on the player by the end of the main story. It is hinted Hau may have also developed a crush on Lillie, saying he "has so much to tell her" before she leaves for Kanto.
    • The player can have dates with Olivia and Ilima. Olivia says suggestive things like "I love boys/girls with good appetite"
    • This also happens between Solgaleo and Lunala, of all things. They're believed to be the male and female evolutions of Cosmog, respectively (despite being genderless), and traveling to the other version's dimension with your version mascot results in both Legendaries meeting and producing a new Cosmog.
  • Shout-Out:
    Aether Foundation employee: So your job, if you choose to accept it, would be to register the Stufful on Route 8 in your Pokédex and then show us the data.
    • A police officer in Route 13's motel garage is a fan of The Lone Ranger.
    • The animations for several Z-Moves look suspiciously similar to famous attacks from other franchises:
      • The Ghost-type Z-Move, Never-Ending Nightmare, looks a lot like Unseen Hands, as both attacks utilize shadowy hands to attack a foe.
      • The Steel-type Z-Move, Corkscrew Crash, looks similar to the Giga Drill Breaker.
      • The Dragon Z-Move, Devastating Drake, is a shout out to Golden Sun: The Lost Age. One of the game's Summon Magic, Catastrophe, manifests a knight that unleashes a giant purple dragon to ram into and explode on foes. Pokémon that use Devastating Drake unleash...a giant purple dragon to ram into and explode on foes.
      • Another reference to The Lost Age is Solgaleo's Sunsteel Strike, where it resembles Sol Blade's unleash Megiddo. Both attacks feature a fireball-like attack crashing towards the enemy. Neither attacks are classified as fire elemental despite their visuals.
      • Marshadow's special Z-Move, Soul-Stealing 7-Star Strike, involves dealing several punches towards its enemy with no apparent effect, who then suddenly blows up. Omae wa mou shindeiru.
    • Midnight Lycanroc's shiny coloration is awfully similar to another video game werewolf.
    • Lurantis' signature move, Solar Blade, is used in a near-identical way to a Program Advance.
  • Shown Their Work:
    • The Steel typing for Solgaleo initially baffled most people. Researching further, however, shows that Game Freak knew that this makes more sense than it seems, as Solgaleo is described as a "Beast that Devours the Sun." The main symbol of Alchemy is that of a lion that bites into the sun, hence not only being identical to Sogaleo's description, but Alchemy was the science of purifying metal. Hence the Steel typing. Additionally, the Sun will eventually go nova due to the accumulation of iron in its core, which cannot be fused to gain energy.
    • The Z-Move activation poses appear to be based on hula dance steps. For instance, the Hydro Vortex pose is a common motion used to show large waves/turbulent water.
    • Pikipek's feet are zygodactyl (two toes in front, two in back), just like real life woodpeckers.
    • Yungoos' origins—it's not native to the islands, but was brought in to deal with the Rattata population. This backfired when the Rattata adapted and became nocturnal to avoid the diurnal Yungoos, and in the process Yungoos became an invasive species. In real life, mongooses were introduced to Hawaii to deal with rat populations and it backfired in a similar way; rats are nocturnal and mongooses are diurnal, so the two species never interacted.
    • The Alolan variants of certain Pokémon are almost perfect representations of real evolution—they have changed gradually in response to environmental pressures. For example, Alolan Exeggutor gained a longer neck to take better advantage of the massive amounts of sunlight in the region, Alolan Marowak's danger sense was developed to give it an edge against omnipresent Grass-type predators, Alolan Sandshrew and Sandslash moved to snowy mountains because their traditional desert habitat was becoming more inhospitable from volcanic eruptions, and Vulpix avoided competition with other Pokémon by migrating to colder regions, where they adapted to the cold.
    • In a much more sobering way, Team Skull's existence in a relatively rural Hawaii-based region (as opposed to an urban region like Unova) and struggles can be seen as a reference to Hawaii's massive (but little known by tourists) poverty crisis.
    • The uniforms of the Police Officer trainer class are fairly close to the real world police uniform worn by Hawaiian life enforcement.
  • Slippy-Slidey Ice World: The peak of Mt. Lanakila on Ula'Ula Island. New forms appear here of Vulpix and Sandshrew which are Ice type, among other Ice-type Pokémon.
  • So Last Season: In Generation VI, only a select few actually have the Key Stone that enables Mega Evolution, and the player can only obtain one Mega Stone per species in the game. Here, Mega Evolution is entirely off-limits until the postgame, the player can purchase as many Mega Stones as they want from the Battle Tree shop, and it's not uncommon to encounter several trainers activating Mega Evolution with their Key Stone.
  • Socialization Bonus:
    • Interacting with other players in the Festival Plaza awards Festival Coins, which can be used to buy various items in the plaza.
    • As usual in Pokémon, some Pokémon need to be traded in order to evolve, and the player must trade owners of the other version's exclusive Ultra Beasts in order to fill their Pokédex.
  • Solar and Lunar: The Theme Naming of the games.
  • Sore Loser: With the new pre- and after-battle poses in these games, a few Trainer classes are shown to be this, such as Beauties (who scowl while putting their hands on their hips) and male Preschoolers (who throw a fit).
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: In previous games, graveyard areas were generally accompanied by sad or creepy music, as they were usually filled with characters mourning the loss of loved ones, as well as being a place to catch Ghost types. The Hau'oli Cemetery theme, by comparison, is shamelessly cheery and bouncy.
  • Source Music: The Thrifty Megamart music is far tinnier than the rest of the music in the game, implying that it's playing in the store itself.
  • Spoiler: invokedIn the Festival Plaza, players whispering "Listen! Listen!" may want to share various things they've done in their games with you, and they warn you that they may share something that you haven't done yet.
  • Spoiler Opening:
    • Only just after making their character, the player seees a cutscene of Lillie running away from some Aether Foundation employees. Though presumably intended to paint Lillie in a negative light at first, both it and the later revelation of the Aether Foundation being the villains are undermined by said employees making very obvious "snarling bad guy" faces.
    • As with most other Pokémon games, whenever starting the game, the player will hear the mascot legendary cry on the title screen. However, whenever hearing Nebby (Cosmog)'s cry, a player may join the dots and recognise The Reveal well in advance. It's worse in Moon, since Lunala's cry sounds much more like Cosmog's than Solgaleo's does, and it even physically resembles Cosmog slightly.
  • Stalker Shrine: Mimikyu's hidden room in the abandoned Thrifty Megamart is decorated with posters and flyers of Pikachu.
  • Stealth Pun: Komala, which is always asleep, is #222 in the Alolan Pokédex.
  • Strange Salute: When Alolans greet each other, they may accompany "Alola!" with a gesture where they move both hands from head-level downward in a half-oval shape, evoking a rainbow.
  • Super Mode:
    • In addition to performing Z-Moves, the Z-Rings can be used to trigger Mega Evolution.
    • A limited-edition Greninja available with the game's demo has the special ability "Battle Bond", letting it transform into Ash-Greninja from the anime.
  • Surprise Creepy: The first half of the game is much more lighthearted than previous games; Alola is a much more laid-back region than others, and unlike Teams Galactic, Plasma, or Flare, all of whom wanted to take over the world in different ways, all Team Skull wants to do is cause chaos and mayhem, and even then, there is a good team that is bent on stopping them: the Aether Foundation. Then the Foundation's president, Lusamine, reveals her true colors, and the game suddenly takes a very dark turn. And don't think that you'll be free in the postgame, because you then get to hear how terrifying the Ultra Beasts actually are.
    • This gets taken even further because the game uses the same graphical style as always only slightly less chibi looking and that the game was advertised in a way that made it quite kid friendly.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Professor Samson Oak — cousin of Samuel Oak — appears in the game, researching Alolan Forms. He looks extremely similar to his relative in Kanto, making him the very thing that he's researching!

    T to Z 
  • Take a Third Option: When the player encounters Grimsley on Route 15, he will ask what the outcome of a coin flip he's about to do will be. Other than the obvious options of "heads" and "tails", the player can opt to say "neither". If this is chosen as the answer, Grimsley admits that he had planned to cheat by having a Skarmory catch the coin in mid-air.
  • Talking Animal:
    • For the first time in the series, several Pokémon actually seem to be forming coherent sentences when they speak — everything from a Gumshoos saying "Buzzaff" in Sun or a Raticate saying "Scram" in Moon, to a Sudowoodo saying "Lies"note , to Totem Mimikyu exclaiming "Seeeee meee?!" in its trial and Tapu Koko exclaiming "IT IS TIME" when you fight it.
    • Rotom frequently talks with the player through the Pokédex it inhabits.
  • Temple of Doom: The four natural islands have ruins where the player encounters the Guardian Pokémon.
  • Temporary Online Content: Mega Stones for Pokémon that were not native to Alola were only available online. Either they were given as prizes for participating in Wi-fi competitions or as codes. Each code gave you up to 4 Mega Stones and they stop working at the end of October, just a few days before Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon's release.
  • That's No Moon!: On Exeggutor Island, a tall palm tree turns out to be an Alolan Exeggutor that ambushes Lillie and the Player.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: When you go to some Sudowoodo roadblocks with a Waterium Z, they flee. An NPC informs you that Lana has used a Water-type Z-Move against them before. Taking into account that her Araquanid (with STAB and Water Bubble) is the one holding the Z-Crystal, Water is super effective against Rock, and an offensive Z-Move has at least 100 base power, she attacked the Sudowoodo with way more power than was necessary.
  • Thin Dimensional Barrier: The Alola region is host to a rare phenomenon known as the Ultra Wormhole. In the past, creatures from Ultra Space (including the Ultra Beasts and the mascot legendaries) have emerged from these wormholes, requiring the intervention of the Island Guardians to repel them. It's revealed in the post-game that several people known as "fallers" (such as Anabel) have been sucked into Ultra Wormholes in the past, only to reemerge with few memories.
  • Those Two Bad Guys: Two Team Skull grunts, literally called Grunt A and Grunt B, hound you throughout your travels, picking fights whenever possible.
  • Time Skip: The game takes place three months after the second opening cutscene, in which Lillie and Cosmog escape Aether Paradise.
  • Toilet Humor:
    • At the mall in Hau'oli City, you may be forced by a Janitor to pick up Pokémon "trash" that you supposedly tracked around and bring it to his Grimer to eat. The text that appears while getting the last one says that you pick up "a big surprise from a Pokémon".
    • Turtonator's Moon Pokédex entry says that its explosive dung "can be put to various uses".
  • Too Awesome to Use: The Apricorn Poké Balls from Gold and Silver are back...except you normally only get the chance to use one of each on each playthrough note .
  • Too Dumb to Live: Hano Grand Resort had to establish Pyukumuku Chucking as an official job at the hotel because Pyukumuku are constantly crawling onto Hano Beach for food. And even if there's no food left, Pyukumuku will continue to stay there to the point of starvation. This deters visitors from staying at the Hotel and walking on the beach as Pyukumuku constitute a stepping hazard and a smelly, ugly mess that needs to be cleaned up quickly. What's worse is that Pyukumuku Chucking is a daily job because the Pyukumuku are always crawling onto the beach like clockwork.
  • Trademark Favorite Food:
    • Hau loves malasadas. He frequently talks about them and throughout your adventure tries to visit all malasada shops in Alola.
    • Mohn, the caretaker of Poké Pelago, loves Poké Beans. Good thing too, since they seem to be the only food available there.
    • Guzma's favorite drink is Tapu Cocoa. It's one of the passwords to gain entry to his room at Team Skull's base, the Shady House.
    • According to notes in Mina's concept art, her favorite food is spam musubi.
    • A few Pokémon display some predator/prey reationships: Mareanie are fond of Corsola horns while Sableye actively hunt Carbink. In fact using the later as "bait" in SOS battles are the only way to encounter the former Pokémon in the wild.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: Many new Pokémon, Alola variants, and Ultra Beasts are shown off at one point or another by trailers and bios on the official website. Notable things that weren't revealed were Necrozma's name (though Necrozma itself was still revealed), those of the Ultra Beasts (whom were referred to by codenames and presented as different creatures from Pokémon), and the Pokémon Cosmoem, who itself spoils quite a few twists just by looking at it and seeing some similarities to another Pokémon.
  • Traitor Shot: After a mysterious creature appears from a wormhole and flees, Aether Foundation President Lusamine appears to care about its well-being...until the camera zooms in on her Slasher Smile.
  • Trash of the Titans: Po Town and most especially the Shady House, Team Skull's hideout, is a mess, full of broken furniture, graffiti, rubbish, and other debris.
  • Tree Trunk Tour: The Battle Tree in the postgame. The battle arenas are found on the tree tops though.
  • Trick Boss: For the first time, it seems that all you had to do to become the Champion of the Alola Pokémon League was to beat the Elite Four. Not so — once you sit on the throne, Kukui approaches you as the final trainer to battle.
  • The Triple: The items found in the corners of Resolution Cave's final chamber are three rare items (Light Ball, Life Orb, Big Nugget) and a regular one sold in Pokémon Centers (Adrenaline Orb).
  • Unblockable Attack: Z-Moves cannot be negated by moves like Protect, but they do have their power reduced by 75%.
  • Uncanny Family Resemblance: Samson Oak, Samuel Oak's cousin, looks nearly identical to Samuel aside from his hair and tan.
  • Underground Monkey: Alolan versions of several Generation I Pokémon have adapted to the environment, giving them new appearances and typings. For example:
    • The Alolan version of Exeggutor has an incredibly long neck and is part Dragon rather than Psychic.
    • The Alolan Vulpix line is Ice-type, with its evolution gaining the Fairy-type.
    • The Alolan Sandshrew line is part Ice, part Steel-type.
    • Alolan Raichu is part Psychic type and can surf on their tails.
    • Alolan Marowak is a Fire/Ghost type with a danger sense.
    • Alolan Meowth used to belong to royalty, were pampered and became vainly prideful and selfish, and therefore became Dark type.
    • The Alolan Rattata line came into being when regular Rattata became nocturnal in order to avoid the diurnal Yungoos, gaining the Dark type. It also walks upright, having gone one step up the Sliding Scale of Anthropomorphism.
    • The Alolan Grimer line gains the Dark type after eating too much garbage. Not coincidentally, this makes it impervious to Psychic attacks, which is its biggest weakness in other games.
    • The Alolan Diglett line gain the Steel type, having grown metal hair to alert them to seismic events.
    • The Alolan Geodude line are Rock/Electic type, due to magnetic properties.
    • Finally, the man who researches Alolan Forms, Samson Oak, looks almost identical to his cousin, Samuel Oak, but with longer hair and a heavy tan.
  • Ungrateful Bastard: The Machamp getting harassed by two women at the Hano Grand Resort does not respond well to being saved by the player. It's revealed that he is a man in a costume who wanted the women's attention as a Machamp. He gives out a TM for Attract and orders that the player never speak to him again.
  • Unusual Euphemism: The janitor in the mall orders you to clean up "Pokémon...er...trash" that you supposedly tracked around the floor after a Pokémon Ride show, which featured Tauros. He refuses to outright say what the "trash" is, but the player can easily guess.
  • Updated Re-release: Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon has the same basic story (Player character just moved to Alola, helps Lillie rescue Nebby, undertakes the Island Trials, is introduced to the Aether Foundation, Lusamine is revealed as the main villain) but focuses on Necrozma instead of Nihilego, and the story shifts to focus much more on the Ultra Space and Ultra Beasts, with new antagonists: the Ultra Recon Squad, being introduced. It also fleshes out some characters who get overlooked, such as giving Mina a proper role as a Trial Captain. At the same time, it adds new areas (such as Pikachu Valley) and game elements, like a mini-game that lets you surf and pull off stunts with a Mantine while you travel between the islands, and a focused use on the Poke Finder's camera function to play with your Pokémon and create photos to share on social media.
  • Valley Girl: The phrasing of the description for the Fairy-type Z-Move Twinkle Tackle dips into this.
    "The user creates a very charming space using its Z-Power and totally toys with the target."
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential:
    • SOS Battles involve a wild Pokémon calling for help. In order to catch several Pokémon that can't otherwise be found in the wild, you must keep that Pokémon on the field, letting it call for help and waiting as the Random Number God determines whether the Pokémon that appears is the one you want. A Pokémon with lower health is more likely to call for help, so often they'll have a sliver of HP left for many turns before the right Pokémon appears beside them, after which they're knocked out. Using an Adrenaline Orb makes wild Pokémon nervous and more likely to call for help, as does facing them with a Pokémon with Unnerve, Intimidate, or Pressure. Furthermore, some Pokémon have predator-prey relationships with others, and the predator Pokémon can be summoned by the prey. This can amount to the player deliberately keeping the prey in question alive but at low health so it will call for help, effectively being used as bait for their predators.
    • In Kiawe's trial, you can continue to get the answers wrong even though they're extremely obvious in order to keep fighting his Marowak and grind.
    • Sophocles' trial allows you to electrocute him repeatedly by deliberately picking the wrong answers. Obviously, it doesn't actually hurt him, but still.
    • At the Hano Grand Resort, you can choose to ignore two female golfers harassing a Machamp. If you don't, it's revealed that the Machamp was actually a man in a Machamp costume. He was looking for attention and was using the TM Attract.
  • Villain Ball: Hau points out to Faba that if he stayed hidden during the Aether Foundation infiltration, the heroes would have been unable to make it to Lusamine's quarters, since Faba has the only key through the back of the building.
  • Vile Villain, Saccharine Show: These games are some of the warmest, happiest, most light-hearted installments in the franchise...and then there's the Aether Foundation, particularly its director Lusamine, and the Ultra Beasts.
  • Villain with Good Publicity: The Aether Foundation is held up as a selfless protector of Pokémon heroically fighting against Team Skull...but Team Skull is actually working for them, and they had three Type: Null specimens cryogenically frozen "for eternity" when they failed to work as intended. Lusamine in particular is your typical political/celebrity narcissist, who smiles and looks pretty for the cameras while conducting their nasty business (in this case, abusing her children) away from the public eye. However, it's implied the Foundation's villainy was simply them following the orders of their president (who herself went crazy thanks to Nihilego's toxins), as they go back to honest conservation following Lusamine's defeat.
  • Virtual Pet: The Pokémon-Amie feature from the previous generation gets upgraded to Pokémon Refresh. In addition to the original petting and feeding features, it now allows you groom your Pokémon after they get dirty or mussed in battle, dry them off if they get wet, and even treat Standard Status Effects using appropriate tools.
  • Wake-Up Call Boss:
    • The story battle against Ilima early on can be this for the unprepared. His Yungoos obviously won't prove that much of a threat, but his Smeargle can easily wipe your party if you're underleveled. It has a move that counters your own starter Pokémon, is pretty fast for that early in the game, and has Quick Attack to get off a free hit anyway. It doesn't help that Yungoos loves spamming Leer, which will make your Pokémon even more vulnerable to those Quick Attacks. And Tapu Koko help you if you chose Popplio, as Leafage is a physical move—after a few Leers, Baby-Doll Eyes won't save it. Just ask several Nuzlocke trainers who ended the battle with a Total Party Kill.
    • Totem Gumshoos/Alolan Raticate, depending on the version. This fight can be a bit of a shock, especially if you're going in blind. This Pokémon fight shows that this will not be any sort of ordinary Pokémon Gym Battle of old, between the first usage of the Totem Power and will probably be the first Pokémon to summon help.note 
  • Walking Shirtless Scene: Kukui, who wears a lab coat with nothing underneath. In his Masked Royal persona, he does away with the coat.
    • Gladion, as far as both gameplay and plot goes, is one. He starts out as the typical bad guy of the type seen in these games - arrogant, rude, pushing your character off as insignificant - and his first Pokémon is a typical Zubat. Then brings out his second, a previously unseen Mon: Type: Null. It has the same base stat total as a fully evolved starter Pokémon, meaning you're facing a trainer with a Pokémon with "fully evolved" stats before you even reach the second Trial. While it's not as tough as a typical Legendary, it's a very unsubtle foreshadowing.
    • And immediately following Gladion is the next trial's Totem Wishiwashi, which thanks to the Totem Pokémon's Artificial Brilliance is actually a credible threat. Unlike wild Wishiwashi, the Totem Wishiwashi's Schooling ability functions properly, pitting you against a behemoth that has well over 100 in all of its offense and defense stats in addition to the totem boost. Making it worse is that it can S.O.S. another Wishiwashi, which has Helping Hand, or Alomomola, which has Heal Pulse to restore Totem Wishiwashi's HP on top of Helping Hand and its own respectable bulk. You will need a Grass-type for this fight unless you're very overleveled.
  • Welcome to the Caribbean, Mon!: Poké Pelago is a chain of island paradises where everyone relaxes and eats Poké Beans. The music that plays there has ocean sounds throughout and makes use of steelpan, flute, and guitar.
  • Where It All Began: Once you defeat the Elite Four, a luau is thrown at Iki Town. Lillie suggests slipping away and going to the Ruins of Conflict. After crossing the rebuilt bridge, you can battle, and then capture, Tapu Koko.
  • Wham Episode: Between your visits to Ula'ula Island and Poni Island, you make another trip to Aether Paradise, where quite a few things are brought to light. Namely, it's confirmed that the Aether Foundation was Evil All Along, they financially back Team Skull, and Lusamine is planning to use Cosmog's power to open Ultra Wormholes so she can capture the Ultra Beasts and destroy Alola. On top of all that, Lusamine is revealed to be the mother of both Lillie and Gladion.
  • Wham Line:
    • This line during the Wham Episode mentioned above not only gives you some insight into Gladion and Lillie's backstory, it's also the first indication into Lusamine's true colors.
      Gladion: I was like an ornament to my mother. Wearing whatever she told me to wear, acting however she wanted me to act...
    • The truth about Lillie and her mother, Lusamine, comes out:
      Lillie: I don't need your approval, mother!
    • And the other half of that:
      Lusamine: The daughter who stole my Cosmog from me, and the son who took my Type: Null!
    • Before all of that, when you first find out that Gladion knows Lillie.
      Gladion: (upon overhearing that Lillie was kidnapped) Did I hear that right? It was Lillie who took Cosmog?!
    • And another one a little later, connecting Gladion to the Aether Foundation and Lusamine.
      Assistant Branch Chief Wicke: (to Gladion) Young master.
    • Kukui joins you in the Champions' Chamber:
      Kukui: Oh yeah, Now you're the Pokémon League Champion! (shakes his head) Wouldn't it be nice if it were that simple?
  • Wolverine Publicity:
    • Charizard is a Ride Pokémon despite being unobtainable via normal gameplay, let alone in the Alola dex (despite the fact that two other sets of starter Pokémon besides Alola's are obtainable via Island Scan). However, it will eventually be available without transferring via QR Code from a collectible "Moncollé GET" figure.
    • Greninja is the only Starter Pokémon not from Alola, Johto or Unova to be obtainable in the game, thanks to the Demo Version. This is to properly show off its Super Mode, as it's the only Kalos starter with one (further reinforcing this trope).
  • The Worf Effect:
    • The trailer seen here shows Solgaleo defeat Salamence with just one Sunsteel Strike.
    • The reveal trailer for the alternate Zygarde Formes shows 10 percent Zygarde knocking out a Metagross, and Complete Zygarde wiping out a Garchomp.
    • The reveal of Crabrawler at the 2016 World Championships featured it defeating several prominent Pokémon being used in teams at the event such as Landorus-Therian, Talonflame, Cresselia, and Ferrothorn.
  • Wutai: Justified, since in real life, people of East Asian descent make up the largest racial group on Hawaii, so it's natural that some locations would have this:
    • Konikoni City is basically Chinatown.
    • Malie City explicitly features Johto-inspired architecture. Prominent Johto cities such as Violet and Ecruteak are in turn based on Nara and Kyoto, both cities known for their traditional design.
  • You ALL Look Familiar: As is typical in games, NPC trainer classes have limited models, female Swimmers being the only exception. This trope is lampshaded twice by Team Skull Grunts: after failing to steal Berries from an old man, they battle you again while you're on your first Trial. If you tell them you remember them from before, one of the Grunts admits he's impressed you recognized them because they both look identical. In Po Town, you come across two arguing female Grunts. One of them is angry that the other is wearing her shirt. They consider writing their names on their clothes but note that it wouldn't help because they're both called Grunt.
  • You Kill It, You Bought It: Non-lethal example should you become Champion. This is the first game where you actually have to defend that title should you gain it. In the post-game, sitting in the Champion's chair causes such a challenger - randomly chosen from ten possibilities including Hau and Kukui - to appear.
  • Your Princess Is in Another Castle: Lampshaded. After beating the Elite four, you technically are the Champion, but Professor Kukui walks in and says technically the player should fight a surprise fifth opponent before being recognised.
  • Your Size May Vary:
    • Unlike the previous generation, trainers are shown next to their Pokémon in battle. As with previous games, though, large Pokémon are scaled down from what their Pokédex entries specify in order to fit on the battlefield. This leads to hilarious results when an enormous Pokémon such as Wailord appears to be no bigger than a child.
    • According to its Pokédex entry, Golisopod is 6'7". Guzma is tall even when slouching (and his height is noted a few times), but in the credits portrait, Guzma's Golisopod stands quite a bit higher than that.

Alternative Title(s): Pokemon Sun, Pokemon Moon

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/VideoGame/PokemonSunAndMoon