Generations I and II
Surf inflicts damage and has no secondary effect.
In a Double Battle, Surf will hit both opposing Pokémon. Its base power is doubled if it is used against a Pokémon using Dive.
Surf will now hit allies.
In Triple Battles, Surf will hit all other adjacent Pokémon, including allies.
Surf's power changed from 95 to 90. Surf will also destroy stalagmites found in the background of battles.
Outside of battle
Surf can be used outside of battle to travel over bodies of water. When doing so, wild Pokémon may be encountered. Surfing is a very important mechanic of the games and usually must be used to complete the game, as all main series games to date except Pokémon Black and White have required Surf in order to reach the Pokémon League where the Elite Four reside.
The speed of Surfing has varied dramatically through games. In Generations I and II, the speed was at the same speed as walking. In Generation III, the speed was increased to running speed. In Pokémon Diamond and Pearl, the Surfing speed was reduced to walking speed again. The speed was returned to running speed in Pokémon Platinum.
When Surf is used outside of battle, the sprite of an aquatic Pokémon carrying the player on the water is shown. This sprite is generic, so the same sprite is used for every surfing Pokémon, regardless of the Pokémon's own menu sprite. These sprites change between generations. In Generation I, the sprite used is the one used to display all aquatic Pokémon, and resembles Seel and Dewgong. In Generation II, the sprite resembles a red Lapras (blue in Crystal if the player is a girl). In both Generations I and II, a Pikachu using Surf will display a surfing Pikachu sprite instead of the normal one. From Generation III onwards, the sprite is indistinguishable as a specific Pokémon, although some Pokémon have special overworld sprites in the Generation VI games. In the Generation VI games, surfing on Lapras specifically will show the player riding on Lapras instead of the usual generic shape. In Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, Kyogre, Wailmer and Sharpedo all have their own surfing model; additionally, Kyogre moves faster and has a larger hitbox, while Sharpedo moves twice as fast as normal but prevents fishing.
|| A Water-type attack. The power of this technique is strong and highly accurate.
|| A Water-type attack. This move is strong and highly accurate.
|| A strong water-type attack.
|| Creates a huge wave, then crashes it down on the foe.
|| A big wave crashes down on the foe. Can also be used for crossing water.
|| Inflicts damage on the target. Inflicts double damage on a diving foe.
|| It swamps the entire battlefield with a giant wave. It can also be used for crossing water.*|
It swamps the entire battlefield with a giant wave. It can also be used to cross water.*
|| It swamps the area around the user with a giant wave. It can also be used for crossing water.
|| The user attacks everything around it by swamping its surroundings with a giant wave. This can also be used for crossing water.
|Bold indicates a Pokémon gains STAB from this move.|
Italics indicates a Pokémon whose evolution or alternate form receives STAB from this move.
In other games
Piplup using Surf in Super Smash Bros. Brawl
In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Piplup creates a wave and then surfs on it, pushing any players it hits. Anyone caught in it will be pushed until Piplup disappears, or pushes the character off the stage. Piplup will keep using Surf even when off the stage.
In the anime
In the main series
In Pokémon Origins
| The user attacks the foe with a powerful burst of water. It can also be used to surf across waters.
|| First Used In
|| Nidoqueen pulls back its hand, forming an orb of water in front of it. It then thrusts its hand forward, slamming the orb into the opponent.
| Giovanni's Nidoqueen
|| File 3 - Giovanni
|| Lapras carries its Trainer across waters on its back.
| Red's Lapras
|| File 3 - Giovanni
In the manga
In the Be the Best! Pokémon B+W manga
In the Electric Tale of Pikachu manga
In the Pokémon Adventures manga
In the Pokémon Diamond and Pearl Adventure! manga
In the Pocket Monsters HGSS Jō's Big Adventure manga
In other generations
Outside of battle
Used by Lapras
- Some of the Pokémon that can learn Surf, like Barboach, appear to lack the physique required to transport a human being at sea.
- Junichi Masuda revealed in an interview that Surf is his favorite move.
- Surf and Fly are the only HM moves that become event-exclusive moves on certain Pokémon, both on Pikachu.
- In Generation VI, Surf and Fly are tied for having the highest base power of all HM moves. Prior to Generation VI, Surf had the highest base power.
- If Secret Power is used in the ocean in Generation III, it will have the animation of Surf.
- There is an unused item allowing players to cross water, identical to Surf in Red, Blue, and Yellow. It has been fan-named as "surfboard".
- Muddy Water has the same animation as Surf, except it uses a brown coloring instead.
- In console 3D games, when Pikachu uses this move a surfboard appears underneath it.
- In Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, a glitch causes the game to freeze if the player is surfing on a Wailmer and it evolves while the player is fishing.
In other languages