Pokémon Storage System
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The Pokémon Storage System (Japanese: ポケモンの預かりシステム Pokémon Storage System) allows Pokémon to be stored and transmitted as computer data. The player can withdraw or deposit Pokémon in a number of Boxes, allowing them to own more Pokémon than just the six permitted in their party. The first such system was originally developed by Bill. In the core series games, most regions use nominally different versions of the Pokémon Storage System.
- Main article: Terminology of Pokémon Storage System
The Pokémon Storage System is typically capitalized as Pokémon Storage System (or POKéMON Storage System from Generations I to III).
However, other names are used on several occasions. In Generation II, it is referred to variously as the POKéMON Storage System, POKéMON PC storage system, PC POKéMON storage system, POKéMON STORAGE SYSTEM, and shortened to STORAGE SYSTEM. In Pokémon Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald, it is referred to as the POKéMON storage system by a non-player character in the Petalburg City Pokémon Center. In Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver, Bill refers to it as the Pokémon Storage system in a phone call. In Pokémon Sword and Shield, it is referred to as the Pokémon storage system by the Adventure Guide and the description of the Pokémon Box Link.
A Box within this system is variously referred to as Pokémon Box (POKéMON BOX in Generations I to III, or PKMN BOX on one occasion in Generation I), PC Box (PC BOX in Generations I to III), or simply shortened to Box (BOX in Generations I to III).
In the Pokémon Lottery Corner, the Pokémon in the Box are referred to as PC-boxed. In the Pal Park, the verb "box away" refers to the action of placing a Pokémon in a Box.
In Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, the Pokémon Boxes are used but the name "Pokémon Storage System" itself is not mentioned.
In the core series games
Starting with Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!, the Pokémon Storage System is accessible through the Pokémon Box Link system in the game's menu, allowing the player to switch their party Pokémon at almost any point in the game.
Different Pokémon Storage Systems are used in different regions. The original Pokémon Storage System was developed by Bill, and the systems used in other regions have all derived either directly or indirectly from Bill's system.
There are six Pokémon Storage Systems used in the core series regions:
- Bill's Pokémon Storage System, used in Kanto and Johto.
- Lanette's Pokémon Storage System, used in Hoenn.
- Bebe's Pokémon Storage System, used in Sinnoh.
- Amanita's Pokémon Storage System, used in Unova.
- Cassius's Pokémon Storage System, used in Kalos.
- In Alola, the Pokémon Storage System is maintained by Molayne.
In the PC, these systems are usually referred to as "Someone's PC" initially, but when the player meets the person responsible for creating or maintaining the region's Pokémon Storage System, the entry will change from "Someone" to the person's name (e.g., "Bill's PC").
There is arguably little to no canonical difference in the games between any of these systems, however. Those Pokémon Storage Systems that have appeared in multiple generations have not demonstrated a strict fidelity in any particular to their previous incarnations. Rather, Pokémon Storage System features tend to more closely follow the features of other contemporaneous games, regardless of the region or administrator. This is exemplified by Bill's PC and Lanette's PC, which have both seen major or moderate changes over their appearances in multiple generations.
A few other games also present different versions of Pokémon Storage Systems:
- In Orre, two different Pokémon Storage Systems are featured in the games Pokémon Colosseum and Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness. No administrator is ever mentioned for these systems.
- Brigette manages the Pokémon Storage Systems in Pokémon Box Ruby & Sapphire and Pokémon Bank.
- My Pokémon Ranch also offers an alternative to the digital Pokémon Storage System: Pokémon from Pokémon Diamond and Pearl and Japanese versions of Pokémon Platinum can be sent to stay on a farm owned by Hayley.
- In Hisui, the player keeps their spare Pokémon in pastures in Jubilife Village. The pastures from Pokémon Legends: Arceus are managed by Marie.
Prior to Generation III, the Pokémon Storage System had several limitations.
One was the Box interface, which was a simple scrollable list of names in Generation I, to which Generation II only added a picture of the currently selected Pokémon. In Generation III, however, the Box interface was upgraded to a full visual representation of the currently selected Box with each Pokémon therein represented by a miniature sprite.
Another significant limitation was a requirement to save when changing from one Box to another or when organizing Boxes (in Generation II). In Generation III, the game no longer needs to be saved when changing Boxes, so that Boxes can be switched and organized freely.
Another limitation in Generations I and II was the inability to catch wild Pokémon if both their party and the current Box are full. Until the player's current Box is a Box that is not full or the player's party is not full, the game prevents the player from even throwing a Poké Ball. From Generation III onward, if the current Box is full, when a new Pokémon is caught while the player's party is full, the game will simply send it to the next open Box.
In Generation I, a Pokémon deposited in the Pokémon Storage System retains its current HP value. From Generation II to Generation VII, a Pokémon that is deposited in the Pokémon Storage System has its current HP reset to its maximum HP and is cured of any status condition. In Generation VIII, Pokémon are not healed upon being deposited in the Pokémon Storage System due to the addition of the ability to access it at any time, but healing the party at a Pokémon Center also heals all Pokémon in Boxes.
|Games||Boxes||Box capacity||Total capacity|
From Generation I to III, the player cannot throw Poké Balls if they have no space in their party nor in their Pokémon Storage System (their current Box in the first two generations) for more Pokémon. Starting in Generation IV, the player can throw Poké Balls while their party and Pokémon Storage System are both full, but any newly caught Pokémon are automatically released.
Starting in Generation V, the number of Boxes in the Pokémon Storage System is initially limited, with only a few Boxes available. To unlock the next set of additional Boxes, each currently available Box must have at least one Pokémon in it. This makes saving the game quicker initially, as data belonging to inaccessible Boxes does not have to be touched. If the player is currently using the Storage System and has placed Pokémon in every Box to unlock more Boxes, the PC must be turned off and on again for the new Boxes to appear. These unlock requirements may be bypassed by using Pokémon Bank or Pokémon HOME.
- Pokémon X and Y: after capturing XerneasX or YveltalY.
- Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire: after capturing Rayquaza during the finale of the Delta Episode.
- Pokémon Sword and Shield: after capturing Eternatus.
- Pokémon Legends: Arceus: Pasture 31 after catching Primal Dialga/Palkia, Pasture 32 after catching Arceus.
This unlock requirement cannot be bypassed with Pokémon Bank or Pokémon HOME. This ensures that the player will be able to (and forced to) catch the required Legendary Pokémon, unlike in Pokémon Black and White where the otherwise mandatory catching of ReshiramB/ZekromW can be bypassed by completely filling the party and all 720 spaces in the Storage System beforehand.
In Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, if the player's storage is full before receiving LatiosOR/LatiasAS at Southern Island (either before traveling to Southern Island or before entering the inner grove), the player will be prevented from advancing until they make space. This always happens when the storage is full regardless of whether there is space in the player's party. In Sun and Moon, if the player's party and storage are both full before the battle with SolgaleoS/LunalaM, the player will be able to battle against them an indefinite amount of times with no experience gained, but the story will be unable to progress until they make space and catch them. In Sword and Shield, if the player's party and storage are both full when they attempt to start the battle with ZacianSw/ZamazentaSh, the player will be prevented from starting the battle until they make space.
In Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!, the Pokémon Box is used instead of the Pokémon Storage System. The Pokémon Box is a single box that can hold up to 1,000 Pokémon. It is based on the storage system in Pokémon GO.
- Main article: Game Boy Printer → Pokémon Storage System
In Pokémon Yellow and the Generation II games, it was possible to print a Box's contents using the Game Boy Printer. In Pokémon Yellow, this is an option in the Pokémon Storage System's main menu. In Generation II, it is available in the Change Box mode. Game Boy Printer features are disabled in the Virtual Console release of Pokémon Yellow.
The ability to customize Box names was introduced in Generation II.
Starting in Generation V, Box names are passed through a filter. This filter prohibits any censored words from being used. In Pokémon Black and White, the filter prohibits words that contain more than four numerical characters. In Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl, the filter prohibits Box names that contain more than five numeric characters.
Generation II introduced the first Pokémon Storage System mode explicitly for organizing Pokémon in Boxes. It allows the player to pick up a Pokémon and move it anywhere in the same or a different Box. However, in Generation II it can only move Pokémon that are not holding Mail, and every move requires the game to be saved. In Generation II, the "Move Pokémon" mode only allows a Pokémon to be inserted before or after others. In Generation III, it became possible to switch two Pokémon instead.
Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen introduced a mode for explicitly manipulating the held items of Pokémon in Boxes. This mode allows items to be moved to or from the Bag or directly between two Pokémon. Starting in Generation IV, an entry was added to the context menu in the Move Pokémon mode to allow the player to give a Pokémon an item from the Bag or to remove a Pokémon's item.
In Generation VI, the "Move Pokémon" mode was changed to "Organize Boxes" and, in addition to being able to move Pokémon, it also became possible to switch entire Boxes with each other. This is possible by tapping the button in the lower-left corner of the Box interface in the Organize Boxes mode.
In Generation VII, since PCs only feature the Pokémon Storage System and load it immediately, the organization modes are switched by pressing the X Button. The modes available are a Pokémon organization mode, an item organization mode, and a Battle Teams mode.
In Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!, the Pokémon Box can be organized by invoking one of the several sorting features. The box can be sorted by order caught, Pokédex number, level (ascending or descending), CP (ascending or descending), favorites on top, or species name. A player can also search for specific Pokémon by name, types, moves, TM compatibility, Nature, gender or markings.
- Main article: Wallpaper
From Generation III onward, each box has a wallpaper, a background that can be selected from a predefined list of wallpapers.
Some wallpapers are unlocked during the course of the game or by entering special passwords.
- Main article: Marking
From Generation III onward, the player can place markings on their Pokémon. They can be adjusted within the Pokémon Storage System, among other locations.
Starting in Generation III, the games began introducing shortcuts to expedite tasks in the Pokémon Storage System. Generation V introduced the fullest expression of these selection modes, with three separate modes.
- Default: pops up a context menu when the Pokémon is selected.
- Relocate Mode: automatically picks up a Pokémon or item when it is selected, foregoing the context menu. More generally, it automatically enacts the first option from the context menu.
- Group Move Mode, or Tray: allows any rectangular group of Pokémon to be selected, picked up, and moved together.
- In this selection mode, it is not possible to set Pokémon down if any of the selected Pokémon are over another Pokémon. They must all be over unoccupied positions.
- Generation III core games: select button
- Pokémon Colosseum and XD: X or Y buttons
- Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum: Y button
- In the Generation III games after Ruby and Sapphire and in Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum, the Relocate Mode effectively combines the functionality of the Relocate and Group Move Modes. While in the Relocate Mode, holding the A button while pressing a directional button will allow the player to select a rectangular group of Pokémon just like a Group Move Mode.
- Black and White: select button
These games have no explicit Group Move Mode, and Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver have no way of changing selection modes at all. These selection modes can be toggled within any Pokémon Storage System mode in Generations III and IV, but in Black and White, the withdraw and deposit modes can only use the default selection mode.
In Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 and later games, all three selection modes are possible, but the withdraw and deposit modes of the Pokémon Storage System can only use the default selection mode and the Move items mode cannot use the Group Move selection mode. The selection mode can be changed by tapping buttons above the Box's header on the touch screen or by pressing an assigned button.
The Compare mode is an exclusive Pokémon Storage System feature in Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum. This mode allows the player to compare the Nature and stats, Contest condition, or moves of two Pokémon in the Pokémon Storage System. Two buttons on the left and right of the bottom screen will lock in the corresponding Pokémon if tapped, so that the other Pokémon will change as the cursor moves.
Generation IV introduced the first filter feature in Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum. On the bottom screen in the Pokémon Storage System in these games (in all modes except Compare) there are two buttons, the right of which opens an interface for filtering Pokémon with given markings or held items (holding an item or not). This highlights those Pokémon that meet the specified criteria in the system's Boxes.
The feature next returned in Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 and would persist into subsequent games. In Black 2 and White 2, the filter is only available for the Move Pokémon and Battle Box modes, and in Generation VI, it is only available for the Organize Boxes mode. The filter's options include: Name (any species the player has seen), Nature, Ability, Gender (male, female, or unknown), Held Item (holding or not), and Mark; in Generation VI, there are also options for: Type 1, Type 2, Move, and TMs & HMs (compatibility). Generation VII adds an option to filter by the Battle Team a Pokémon is on.
Battle Box and Battle Teams
The Battle Box is a feature introduced in Generation V. It allows the player to store six Pokémon, which can be used instead of the current party in infrared link battles, the Battle Subway, and Random Matchup in Generation V, and the Battle Maison and the Battle Spot in Generation VI.
Tournaments which utilized the "Battle Competition" feature required its use; therefore, all the Global Battle Union tournaments required it. Once the user of the Battle Box registered their Pokémon team for an official tournament that used the "Battle Competition" feature, the team was locked in the Battle Box and could not be modified (even the reordering of moves) or removed from the Box until the end of the competition.
In Generation V, the Battle Box was a separate feature from the Storage Boxes and had to be selected from the menu of Amanita's PC. In Generation VI, the Battle Box became accessible from the Boxes directly, acting itself as the last Box in the lineup.
Battle Teams are an update to the Battle Box feature that were introduced in Generation VII. The player can register Pokémon from the Storage System to one of six different Battle Teams, and the same Pokémon can be registered to multiple teams. However, any registered Pokémon moved to the player's party will be removed from all Battle Teams. Also, the game prevents them from being traded or sent to Isle Evelup or Isle Avue at Poké Pelago until the player manually unregisters them.
In the side series games
|Games||Boxes||Box capacity||Total capacity|
|Box Ruby & Sapphire||25||60||1,500|
My Pokémon Ranch is also able to store 1,000 Pokémon. An update released only in Japan raises this to 1,500 Pokémon.
In the spin-off games
- Main article: Pokémon Box (GO)
In Pokémon GO, the player has a Pokémon Box that can initially hold 250 Pokémon, including up to 12 Eggs. Pokémon Storage Upgrades can be purchased in the Shop for 200, which expands the capacity by 50 Pokémon. The maximum upgradeable capacity is 7,300 Pokémon.
In the anime
A system for transferring Pokémon electronically exists, and is utilized in all Pokémon Centers as well as the labs of all Pokémon Professors. However, unlike in the games, Pokémon are not stored electronically, and in this continuity, the developer of the system was Dr. Akihabara. On one occasion, Jessie, James, and Meowth were able to invade this system in an attempt to steal Pokémon, but failed thanks to Ash and his friends.
It also seems that the Pokédex automatically connects to this system when a capture is made while there are six Pokémon in a user's party, as seen with the capture of Ash's Krabby in Mystery at the Lighthouse. Brock also states that there is a button on the Pokédex that can transfer Pokémon between the Trainer and where their Pokémon are sent. However, the Pokémon Storage System in Unova seems to lack this feature: in Sewaddle and Burgh in Pinwheel Forest!, when Ash catches Sewaddle as his seventh Pokémon, the Poké Ball shrinks and locks up instead of being teleported straight to the Pokémon Storage System.
In the manga
The Pokémon Storage System has been featured several times over the course of Pokémon Adventures. Unlike the games, however, Trainers do not have a fixed limit to the number of Pokémon they can hold on hand, and thus automatic teleportation of Poké Balls to the storage system does not seem to exist. Similar to the games, Trainers can access the system through PCs to manage their Pokémon on hand. Pokémon in the System appear to be held by the regional Professor, similar to how Professor Oak holds onto Ash's Pokémon in the anime, but usually kept in their Poké Balls instead. Records for the Pokémon Storage System are managed by the respective regional developers.
The Pokémon Storage System was first mentioned in ...But Fearow Itself!, when Red found himself bogged down by a large number of Poké Balls containing Pokémon he has caught. After he encountered Bill at Sea Cottage, Bill helped Red to manage his Pokémon storage, allowing him to change his lineup over the course of the Red, Green & Blue arc. In Peace of Mime, Red discovered that his storage account has been broken into by Team Rocket so they could steal his Eevee, Vee.
Green attempted to infiltrate Sea Cottage and look at Bill's storage system records as a part of her investigation on Red's disappearance. With Bill's help, she learned that Red had accessed the system after his disappearance, confirming that he was alive.
The Pokémon Storage System's breakdown was a notable subplot during this chapter, first mentioned in Sunkern Treasure. As a result of the breakdown, no Pokémon could be transferred digitally, which posed a problem for Crystal, as she had been tasked with catching Pokémon specimens all over the Johto region for Professor Oak's research. In Surrounded by Staryu, Crystal was given a portable transfer system, presented in the form of a cable that connects her Pokédex to her Pokégear. This allowed her to transfer Pokémon she caught to the receiver at the end, although since the portable system was still a prototype, transfers could only be done one-way. The breakdown was eventually revealed to be the work of Neo Team Rocket, who had stolen all the electrical power needed for the system to work, and was fixed by Bill in time to allow Trainers from all over the region to transfer their Pokémon and help in calming the rampaging Lugia and Ho-Oh in Ilex Forest.
Platinum accessed the Pokémon Storage System to retrieve her new Pokémon, tasking them with the investigation of Stark Mountain after the disappearance of Looker and Buck. Later in the chapter, Team Galactic's actions created technical interference that caused the Storage System link in between the Battle Zone and mainland Sinnoh to fail, preventing the transportation of Pokémon in between the two areas.
After capturing Zygarde in Anistar City, Essentia hid it in the Pokémon Storage System due to her Expansion Suit's malfunction limiting Team Flare's control over her. After Lysandre placed Essentia directly under his control, he discovered where Zygarde had disappeared to and had Essentia withdraw it to be used against Team Flare's enemies. The withdrawal was detected by Cassius, allowing him to track down Essentia.
- In Pokémon Colosseum, the only way to fill the Storage System completely is to specifically trade for multiple Nincada and then evolve them into Ninjask and Shedinja, since the game has no wild Pokémon and trading otherwise doesn't change the number of Pokémon in the game. This is the only way to read the in-game message "The box is full. You can't Snag any more Pokémon." if the player attempts to catch a Shadow Pokémon with full PC Boxes and party. Otherwise, the game can never fill more than 55 of the 90 Box slots (48 ordinary Shadow Pokémon, Espeon and Umbreon, two gift Pokémon, and the three Japanese e-Reader-exclusive Shadow Pokémon).
- According to Lanette's research notes, boxes were given customizable names and wallpapers to please the Pokémon stored in them.
In other languages
Pokémon Storage System