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Main Game

  • After the SOS mechanic is introduced, should you choose to do a bit of backtracking, it's possible to get a wild Bagon to call in a Level 9 Salamence as a rare encounter, granting you access to a fully-evolved Pseudo-Legendary before you even leave the first island!
  • Two words: Battle Royal! Four trainers with three Pokémon each facing off in a free-for-all!
  • In their own way, Bruxish, Salandit, and Tsareena have the potential to carve out their own niche on tournament play with their abilities, which negate priority moves (Bruxish's Dazzle and Tsareena's Queenly Majesty) and make Poison-Types and Steel-Types vulnerable to being poisoned (Salandit's Corrosion).
  • Pelipper now having Drizzle as ability, as well as slightly raising its Special Attack, was enough to make it from something nobody ever used to a staple in OU tier in Smogon, courtesy of Drizzle complementing most of its best moves, such as STAB-bed in rain Always Accurate Hurricane as well as boosted Hydro Pump. Though now meeting it at higher levels in wild makes it a legitimate threat too.
  • Leech Life is a TM. Now, you may be thinking, "What, that 20 Base Power move? Sure, the health steal is nice, but it's worthless on such a weak attack!" Not so anymore. Leech Life's base power has been boosted to a whopping 80, putting it on par with X-Scissor in strength, and making it the most powerful physical HP-Draining Move in the gamenote .
  • Hyper Training. In other words, the ability to increase the individual values of a Pokemon.note  Want to use a Pokémon from an earlier generation or Legendary that doesn't have a good IV spread? No problem, you can give them 31 IVs (the max) for the price of a few Bottle Caps. Goodbye, Scrappy Mechanic! Though you can only do it at Level 100.
  • The animations for the Z-Moves are some of the most over-the-top attacks in any of the mainstream Pokémon games, to the point where one can't help but wonder if Game Freak took a few pages from BlazBlue's book.
    • Breakneck Blitz, the Normal-type Z-move, while not as visually astounding as the others, is still fairly awesome. The user charges up, dashes at the opponent at super speed, and rams into them at full force, leaving the target flattened.
    • Inferno Overdrive, the Fire-type Z-move, has the user charge up and fire a huge fireball at the target in a big explosion.
    • Bloom Doom, the Grass-type Z-move, summons a beautiful field of flowers, before charging up a large pillar of floral energy which explodes in a massive bloom.
    • Hydro Vortex, the Water-type Z-move, has the user trap the target in a massive whirlpool while striking it repeatedly.
    • Gigavolt Havoc, the Electric-type Z-move, where the user charges up a incredibly potent thunderbolt and fires it at the opponent like a missile, exploding on contact.
    • Supersonic Skystrike, the Flying-type Z-move, has the user fly up really high, before crashing down on the opponent with tremendous force.
    • Continental Crush, the Rock-type Z-move, has the user jump up and form a ginormous boulder above the target, before crushing them with it. Think of it as the Pokemon version of Planetary Devastation.
    • Tectonic Rage, the Ground-type Z-move, drops the opponent down a fissure, in which the user proceeds to smash down on them so deep that they hit the molten outer core of the earth, and blowing up.
    • All-Out Pummeling, the Fighting-type Z-move, involves the user basically beating the everloving shit out of the opponent, and ramming them full-force against a rock.
    • Never-Ending Nightmare, the Ghost-type Z-move, is both awesome and terrifying. The target is trapped in darkness, then countless huge ghost hands emerge from the ground and crush them.
    • Acid Downpour, the Poison-type Z-move, creates a massive pool of poison and summons acid rain, as the opponent slowly sinks down into the poison.
    • Savage Spin-Out, the Bug-type Z-move, traps the target in a cocoon before the user slams them against the ground, then into the sky as they perform a single slash that destroys the cocoon.
    • Corkscrew Crash, the Steel-type Z-move, turns the user into a huge drill that viciously rams the target across the ground, before finishing them off by ramming them from above.
    • Black Hole Eclipse, the Dark-type Z-move, traps the opponent in a large black hole, which proceeds to implode.
    • Shattered Psyche, the Psychic-type Z-move, telekinetically slams the target over and over against psychic walls before smashing them against one last wall that shatters.
    • Subzero Slammer, the Ice-type Z-move, has the user fire off a massive ice beam which freezes the opponent into a huge glacier that subsequently shatters.
    • Devastating Drake, the Dragon-type Z-move, summons an avatar of a massive dragon that rushes the opponent and explodes.
    • Twinkle Tackle, the Fairy-type Z-move, is both awesome and hilarious. The screen turns all sparkly and cutesy as the user approaches the opponent, then proceeds to boop them into the sky, complete with a twinkle, as the user happily dances around.
    • Snorlax's unique Z-Move, Pulverizing Pancake, involves Snorlax finally waking up and opening its Glowing Eyes of Doom, running towards its opponent, and Goomba Stomping it.
    • Pikachu's Z-Move, Catastropika, starts with Pikachu charging up, followed by your trainer picking it up and chucking it at its opponent, where Pikachu then stops in mid air, forms a ball lightning shell, and slams into its opponent like an electrical meteor.
    • Eevee's Z-move, while not an attack, is still amazing in its own right. Eevee summons all 8 Eeveelutions to give its stats a massive boost.
    • Decidueye's Z-move, Sinister Arrow Raid, has Decidueye fly up and create dozens of arrows, then it proceeds to rush the opponent at full speed, firing all the arrows at once. Decidueye then rams into the target before flying back up, the arrows that were trailing it proceeding to all hit the opponent in an explosion of energy.
    • Incineroar's Z-move, Malicious Moonsault, creates a wrestling ring out of nowhere (seemingly made of pure energy), from which Incineroar proceeds to jump up and smash the opponent at full force while surrounding itself with fiery energy.
    • Primarina's Z-move, Oceanic Operetta, has Primarina charge up a freaking Spirit Bomb made of water and advances it towards the opponent, upon which Primarina detonates it with its voice, creating a massive watery explosion as rain falls.
    • Guardian of Alola, the island guardians' Z-move, has the guardian summon a hulking headless abomination from beneath the ground. The guardian, in its mask form, then takes control of the being by landing on it to serve as a head, before raising a giant fist and smashing the opponent into the dirt.
    • Mew's Z-move, Genesis Supernova has Mew accumulate orbs of psychic power rapidly as it moves the orbs in the definitive shape of a double-helix, just like a strand of DNA (referencing that Mew has DNA from just about every pokemon). It then launches this massive ball of power at the enemy, hitting them like a meteor and filling the battlefield with psychic power.
  • Turtonator, a cool looking Fire/Dragon-type, has a new exclusive move called Shell Trap: if the move is used, and the enemy attacks it, the attack launches a counter fiery explosion that is quite the sight.
  • Crabrawler's debut trailer at Pokémon World consists entirely of it wiping the floor with some of the most common competitive Pokémon, including some legendaries.
  • Silvally's unique ability, RKS System, allows it to be ANY OF THE 18 TYPES depending on the special Memory held item! Making it a near-exact replica of Arceus' unique ability with the plates. Admittedly, more difficult to benefit from in practice, as the Memory items do nothing other than change its type, leaving any non-Normal Silvally to battle without any beneficial item effects beyond receiving STAB on certain attacks.
  • Any moment when Zygarde transforms into Complete Zygarde through its Power Construct ability; it makes the long sidequest to collect the cells all the worthwhile when you witness the power of the Order Pokémon unleashed.


  • The first such moment comes before you even get your starter. Your character — who doesn't have a single Pokémon at this point — runs out onto a rickety rope bridge to protect Nebby from a trio of Spearow, only for Nebby to destroy the bridge due to its Power Incontinence. Then, Tapu Koko dives in out of nowhere, batting away all three Spearow and saving both you and Nebby in one swift movement before leaving behind a sparkling stone that Hala later crafts into a Z-Ring. How's that for a way to start off the game?
  • When an Ultra Beast attempts to attack Hala, Tapu Koko descends from the sky and slams the ground between Hala and the Ultra Beast, ready to brawl.
    • Hala himself is awesome in that scene too, for displaying Nerves of Steel and almost taking on the Ultra Beast alone (until Tapu Koko shows up to help).
    • We also see some streaks of light in the sky that imply that the other Tapus are going after the Ultra Beasts invading their islands. They might have become disillusioned with human interaction in the past, but they're not called the "Guardian Deities" for nothing.
  • For all that Team Skull are a pack of lovable losers, they managed to take over an entire town. That's no mean feat.
    • Team Skull's slav-squat blockade of Vast Poni Canyon after Guzma is trapped in Ultra Space. After you approach one grunt stands and demands to know if the player and Lillie really know of a way to save Guzma, after which the lone female grunt stands and threatens to get the information out of you in no uncertain terms. After you defeat her the remaining 5 male grunts attempt to Zerg Rush you, and when that fails, one grunt stays and refuses to let you pass until Plumeria comes down and tells them to leave.
      Female Grunt: "We can make you talk, even if we have to cut you to the bone!"
      Male Grunt: "I'm not giving up, even though you beat me! I'm part of Team Skull! We're thick as anything!"
  • Hau during the entirety of the second confrontation with Faba during the Aether Foundation break-in.
  • The conclusion to the Aether Foundation break in has our heroes confronted by three boss-class enemies at once: Lusamine, Guzma, and UB 01. Gladion immediately makes a plan for how and who takes them on. You take on Lusamine, since you're both the most powerful people on your respective sides. He and Type: Null will face the Ultra beast - it's what Null was made for, and he lost to Guzma a few minutes previously. Hau can take on Guzma - the match-up isn't certain, but Hau has surprised him before. Your side wins all three.
  • While traveling through the Vast Poni Canyon, Lillie decides to set a trial for herself by going across a bridge. The only problem is that there are three Murkrow, and they block her path. She effortlessly avoids them and gets across the bridge, even telling the player that she got across the bridge. The scene basically mirrors the very beginning of the game, and the difference between Lillie's reaction then and her reaction here is a testament to just how far she's come.
  • The Ancient Trial in Vast Poni Canyon, despite being at least decades old, is still fully functional, and the Dragons that staff the trial are still very disciplined, enough that they can host and run the Trial by themselves without a human Captain.
  • At the climax, Lillie shows some major steel by calling out Lusamine for the way she treated her (and Gladion) after she became obsessed with the Ultra Beasts.
    Lillie: I am the one who is sick of you, Mother! Children... Children are not just THINGS that belong to their parents! Pokémon are not just THINGS that a Trainer can do whatever they want to! I am alive! Cosmog is alive! We are not things for you to collect! We're not made for you to just discard when you get bored with us! That is terrible, Mother! You are terrible!
  • After defeating Lusamine (fused with Nihilego) a second time, she actually tries to kill Lillie herself. Needless to say, Nebby has none of it and blasts Lusamine away.
    • How about the second battle with Lusamine itself? She packs a full team of Totem Pokémon, and is noticeably more clever than most of the AI. Sounds really challenging, right? The game pretty much tells you that she is the biggest threat to Alola, and possibly the entire world. So what do you do? Steel yourself and your Pokémon, and TAKE. HER. DOWN.
  • In accordance to the quote above, the scene with Tapu Koko is even better should the player have Solgaleo or Lunala in their party. The respective legendary then appears towards Tapu Koko, with the latter responding/acknowledging it in return.
  • In previous games, after defeating the Elite Four and the Champion, you only become the champion in title only. Here, when you beat Professor Kukui, you become the real Champion of Alola. Every time you beat the Elite Four afterwards, it is your duty to defend your title as the Champion from incoming challengers.
    • While most of the challengers are old faces with a few new ones, there is one who stands out among the others: Youngster Tristan. Remember the boy you and Kukui meet in the beginning of the game? The one who asks Kukui to recommend some moves to him? Well, he's back after an entire game of you most likely forgetting he existed, ready to take on the Champion. Yes, a seemingly random NPC whom you met in the beginning stretches of your journey is one of your ultimate challengers! Well done, kiddo.
    • This also means the Champion theme? That's your theme.
  • If you take Solgaleo/Lunala to the Altar of the Sunne/Moone, you can go to the other world, where if you go to the Lake of the Sunne/Moone, your legendary Pokémon will suddenly roar at the sky. Suddenly, Lunala/Solgaleo appears out of nowhere and both roar out, thus creating a Cosmog that you can take. Like the Cosmog that you befriended in the story, it can eventually evolve into another Solgaleo/Lunala.
  • The player character themselves. They start off the game as someone who just moved to the Alola Region. Come the post-game, they are the first Alolan Champion, and the Ultra Beast mission has them capture 10 Ultra Beasts — Pokémon who are equal to Legendary Pokémon — and succeed. Canonically, this puts "Elio" and "Selene" at the top of the list of canonical captures of Pokémon at the level of Legendaries, and makes them one of the most powerful protagonists in the history of Pokémon.
    • Even better, in the post-game, they can defeat none other than Red and Blue, former Champions and two of the most iconic trainers of the entire franchise.
  • Every trainer has had to deal with some pretty rough situations since Gen 3, and it's gradually escalated. In Sun and Moon, the stakes may possibly be higher than ever before: the Ultra Beasts are implied world-invaders, and they may have succeeded in completely destroying the world of one or more universes. Foiling their plan and capturing the Ultra Beasts doesn't just save Alola, but possibly the entire world. It's just as, if not more, reasonable to see Ultra Beasts as a danger to a region at most, not to the world, but going though the bother of saving Lusamine from her own delusions by traveling into Ultra Space remains awesome nonetheless.
  • After the post-game sidequest to catch all the Ultra Beasts, Looker tells you that the International Police has decided to reward you for your trouble... and coughs up ONE MILLION Pokédollars.
  • Considering how timid she is before her Character Development, the fact that Lillie was able enough to gather enough courage to grab Nebby and book it out of the Aether Foundation was an awesome move on it's own.
    • In fact, both Lillie and Gladion get awesome points for being able to escape a very heavily protected facility with Cosmog and Type: Null respectively. Made more awesome since Lillie wasn't that much older then the player and we don't know how old Gladion was when he made his own escape.
    • Lillie deciding to leave for Kanto at the end of the game in order to become a Pokémon trainer. ALONE. After spending a majority of the game relying on the protagonist, Lillie finally decides that in order to become stronger, she has to face the world by herself, without the protagonist by her side. It’s a really mature and brave decision that really showcases how much her character has developed over the course of the game.