Charizard is a draconic, bipedal Pokémon. It is primarily orange with a cream underside from the chest to the tip of its tail. It has a long neck, small blue eyes, slightly raised nostrils, and two horn-like structures protruding from the back of its rectangular head. There are two fangs visible in the upper jaw when its mouth is closed. Two large wings with blue-green undersides sprout from its back, and a horn-like appendage juts out from the top of the third joint of each wing. A single wing-finger is visible through the center of each wing membrane. Charizard's arms are short and skinny compared to its robust belly, and each limb has three white claws. It has stocky legs with cream-colored soles on each of its plantigrade feet. The tip of its long, tapering tail burns with a sizable flame.
Charizard has two Mega Forms. Both feature a shorter snout, white, vertical slit pupils, and a bright underside reaching the lower jaw.
As Mega Charizard X, its body and legs are more physically fit, though its arms remain thin. Its skin turns black with a sky-blue underside and soles. Two spikes with blue tips curve upward from the front and back of each shoulder, while the tips of its horns sharpen, turn blue, and curve slightly upward. Its brow and claws are larger, and its eyes are now red. It has two small, fin-like spikes under each horn and two more down its lower neck. The finger disappears from the wing membrane, and the lower edges are divided into large, rounded points. The third joint of each wing-arm is adorned with a claw-like spike. Mega Charizard X breathes blue flames out the sides of its mouth, and the flame on its tail now burns blue. It is said that its new power turns it black and creates more intense flames.
As Mega Charizard Y, it becomes sleeker in appearance but retains its normal coloration. It has three pointed horns on the back of its head, the middle of which is longer. Its snout has larger fangs and a ridge on the nose. Its neck is shorter, but its torso is thinner and longer. It features longer digitigrade feet. Its hands are less developed, with extremely shortened fingers that are no longer separated from each other. Small wings develop on its wrists, while the ones on its back become larger, lose the wing finger passing through their membrane and end up with ragged edges. The back of its tail has a large spike at the base and three smaller ones near the tip, which now burns with a longer flame. Mega Charizard Y is said to have incredible flying prowess that is greater than a jet fighter.
As Gigantamax Charizard, it becomes larger and physically fit. The lower part of its body glows white with several yellow diamonds located on the lower belly. There are also diamond-shaped spots located on the front legs. The claws located on its hand and feet become longer and sharper. The feet become longer and digitigrade, retaining small glowing soles under the forefeet. The wings are transformed into literal flame wings extending to the shoulder blade and two flames sprout from the horns. The colossal flamed wings were created from the energy of Gigantamaxing. The sclera of the eyes becomes yellow. The glow of a flame can be seen in the mouth, and the teeth grow, with the lower front teeth and three teeth in the middle now protruding when the mouth is closed. The flame on the tail extends out and has three red clouds surrounding it, like the clouds most other Gigantamax Pokémon have. The flames within Gigantamax Charizard burns hotter than 3,600 degrees Fahrenheit. When it roars, the temperature can climb to even higher lengths. The wings are capable of being hotter than magma which Charizard uses to burn its opponents.
Charizard flies in search of powerful opponents to battle, and its fire will burn hotter as it gains experience. Its fiery breath is capable of melting boulders, massive glaciers, and has been known to accidentally cause forest fires. Though its fiery breath is hot, it never turns it on any opponent weaker than itself. In the past, Blast Burn was its signature move. Charizard typically inhabits mountains and valleys, such as the Charicific Valley in Johto. The anime has shown that only a weak Charizard would show off its power. It also showed that Charizard can swim underwater, with Pokémon Origins further showing that the flame on the tip of the tail can still keep burning underwater. The wings of Charizard can carry it to an altitude of 4,600 feet (1,400 meters).
In Mewtwo Strikes Back, a Charizard participated in the battle between the original Pokémon and the cloned Pokémon, battling Ash's Charizard and winning easily. Unlike much of its brethren, Charizard wasn't cloned from Ash's Charizard and it had the same marks that Charmandertwo had, indicating that it was likely obtained by Mewtwo through different means than the ones used to clone the Trainers' captured Pokémon. Charizard reappeared in Mewtwo Returns.
One of Blue's main Pokémon, Charizard, debuted as a Charmander. With his increased capacity for battle both with augmented strength and his flight ability, he proved to be a valuable asset for Blue, both during the Silph Co. battles and in the Pokémon League, where Red's Venusaur narrowly defeated him. He had evolved from Charmeleon sometime before Kalling Kadabra.
A Charizard was fantasied along with the other fully evolved Kanto starters in Chinchou in Charge, where the Pokémon Association Chairman of Kanto and Johto explained to Bill and Janine the special privilege of entering the finals unconditionally after collecting Badges.
In Charizard Transforms, X's Charmeleon, Salamè, evolved into a Charizard during a battle against Xerosic's Pokémon. He has a Charizardite X hidden in the flame on the tip of his tail, and with it, he can Mega Evolve into Mega Charizard X.
Green, the main rival of Red, owns a Charizard that evolved from Charmander, his starter Pokémon, apparently skipping the Charmeleon stage in the process. It is a mischievous Pokémon that has a rivalry with Red's Clefairy. It has reverted to the Charmander stage, although it has since evolved back into Charizard permanently.
Charizard's first-released TCG card, which as part of the Base Set, was widely regarded at the height of popularity of Pokémon as the best card ever. This was because of its powerful attack, Fire Spin, and useful Pokémon Power, Energy Burn, which allowed it to convert any Energy attached to it to Fire Energy. Fire Spin needed four Fire Energy and could deal 100 damage, knocking out the majority of Pokémon cards. In addition, it had the highest HP then, at 120. Individual Charizard cards were sold up to as much as $150. First edition cards of this dwarfed this price at one point breaking the $1000 US price point. This Charizard card was reprinted in Wizards of the Coast's Base Set 2 and Legendary Collection sets, and released again with updated artwork in the Stormfront expansion.
Charizard is a Power-type playable character in Pokkén. Moves it can use include Flamethrower, Fire Punch, Flare Blitz, and Seismic Toss. Upon entering Synergy Burst, it Mega-Evolves into Mega Charizard X and can use the Burst Attack Searing Blaze.
In Japanese, Flareon has the category "ほのおポケモン" (Flame Pokémon), while the other four Pokémon share the category "かえんポケモン" (Flame Pokémon).
Prior to Generation VI, Charizard and Rhyhorn shared nearly the same cry. This cry was updated and reused for Mega Charizard Y.
Charizard holds the distinction of being the first Pokémon to appear in the Japanese version of the Pokémon anime, as it is the first one to appear in the opening. However, outside of Japan, Mewtwo is the first to appear.
Charizard appears in Pokémon Battle Chess. It behaves like the bishop piece in chess, but can also move one square backwards.
Charizard may be based on European dragons, which are heavily associated with the element of fire in European folklore; this draconic appearance would later be reflected in the Fire/Dragon typing of Mega Charizard X. Like its pre-evolved forms, it may also take inspiration from lizards, dinosaurs, and the mythical salamander. Its English and Japanese nomenclature may be a reference to how Western dragons are heavily inspired by lizards and other reptiles.
Charizard may be a combination of char (to burn) and lizard.
Lizardon may be a combination of lizard and either dragon or don (Ancient Greek for tooth, commonly used in dinosaur names).