Master Ball

The Master Ball (Japanese: マスターボール Master Ball) is a type of Poké Ball introduced in Generation I. It can be used to catch a wild Pokémon without fail. It was invented by the Silph Co.

Master Ball
マスターボール
Master Ball
Bag Master Ball Sprite.png
Master Ball
Pokémon Global Link artwork
Introduced in Generation I
Pocket
Generation I Bag Items pocket icon.png Items
Generation II Bag Poké Balls pocket icon.png Poké Balls
Generation III Bag Poké Balls pocket icon.png Poké Balls
Generation IV Bag Poké Balls pocket icon.png Poké Balls
Generation V Bag Items pocket icon.png Items (Poké Balls)
Generation VI Bag Items pocket icon.png Items
Generation VII Bag Items pocket icon.png Items (Catching PocketPE)
Generation VIII Bag Poké Balls pocket icon.png Poké Balls
Generation IX Bag Poké Balls pocket icon.png Poké Balls

In the core series games

Price

Games Cost Sell price
RGBY/RBY
GSC
N/A $0
RSEFRLG
DPPtHGSS
BWB2W2
XYORAS
SMUSUMPE
SwShBDSP
SV
N/A N/A

Effect

Manual activation

When used from the Bag in a wild encounter, it catches the wild Pokémon without fail (with the exception of the ghost Marowak in Pokémon Tower). Despite the common misconception that the Master Ball has a low chance to fail in certain generations, it functions by simply overriding the catch formula entirely, skipping any calculations based on chance.

In Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!, throwing a Master Ball will bypass the Poké Ball manual aiming mechanic, and will instead show a cutscene of the Master Ball catching the chosen Pokémon. If used on Legendary Pokémon in these games, they will attempt to smack the ball away during the cutscene, but will still be caught anyway.

The Master Ball cannot be used in situations in which Poké Balls cannot be used, such as in wild battles with two or more opponents currently present or against a trial Pokémon. If used in a Trainer battle, the opposing Trainer will bat the ball away, wasting the item (Generation III and earlier) or only the player's turn (from Generation IV onward).

As a Pokémon's Poké Ball

From Generation VI onward, bred Pokémon inherit their Poké Ball from their parents. However, the Master Ball, Cherish Ball, and Strange Ball cannot be passed down via breeding; instead, they act as a regular Poké Ball for inheritance purposes.

Held item

Fling will fail if used while holding a Master Ball.

Description

Games Description
Stad A Ball that captures any wild Pokémon without fail.
GSC The best Ball. It never misses.
RSEColoXD The best Ball that catches a Pokémon without fail.
FRLG The best Ball with the ultimate performance. It will catch any wild Pokémon without fail.
DPPtHGSS
BWB2W2
The best Ball with the ultimate level of performance. It will catch any wild Pokémon without fail.
XYORAS
SMUSUMPE
SwShBDSPLA
The best Poké Ball with the ultimate level of performance. With it, you will catch any wild Pokémon without fail.
SV The very best Poké Ball with the ultimate level of performance. With it, you will catch any wild Pokémon without fail.

Acquisition

Games Finite methods Repeatable methods
RGBY
RBY
Silph Co. (from the president after defeating Giovanni)
GSC New Bark Town (from Professor Elm after earning all eight Johto Badges) Goldenrod Radio Tower (match all 5 digits in the Lucky Channel)
RS Magma HideoutR/Aqua HideoutS (entrance sealed after defeating Tate and Liza) Lilycove Department Store (match all 5 digits in the Pokémon Lottery Corner)
E Aqua Hideout Lilycove Department Store (match all 5 digits in the Pokémon Lottery Corner)
FRLG Silph Co. (from the president after defeating Giovanni)
Colo Agate Village (from Eagun after reading his incomplete email inside Realgam Tower)
XD Pokémon HQ Lab (from Professor Krane after clearing the Cipher Key Lair)
DPPt Team Galactic HQ (from Cyrus after defeating him) Jubilife TV (match all 5 digits in the Pokémon Lottery Corner)
HGSS New Bark Town (from Professor Elm after earning all eight Johto Badges) Goldenrod Radio Tower (match all 5 digits in the Lucky Channel)
BW Opelucid City (from Professor Juniper after earning all eight Badges), Castelia City Pokémon Center (from a man in black for having Pokémon from 50 different original Trainers)
B2W2 Mistralton City (from Professor Juniper), Plasma Frigate (from Colress after defeating him during the post-game) Join Avenue (grand prize from Raffle Shops)
XY Poké Ball Factory (from president after defeating Celosia and Bryony) Loto-ID Center (match all 5 digits)
ORAS Team Magma HideoutOR/Team Aqua HideoutAS Pokémon Lottery Corner (match all 5 digits)
PMC* Mine Cart Adventure (all levels)
SMUSUM Aether Paradise (from Gladion after defeating Lusamine) Loto-ID Center (match 5 digits), Festival Plaza (Lottery shop: Big Dreams first prize)
PE Silph Co. (from the president after defeating Giovanni) Cerulean Cave
SwSh Postwick (from Professor Magnolia after becoming Champion) Any Pokémon Center (match all 5 digits in the Loto-ID)
SwShCT Freezington (from Peony after the first Dynamax Adventure and becoming Champion)
BDSP Team Galactic HQ (from Cyrus after defeating him) Jubilife TV (match all 5 digits in the Pokémon Lottery Corner)
SV Naranja AcademyS/Uva AcademyV (from Clavell after completing The Way Home)
SVID Blueberry Academy (from Drayton after defeating Champion Kieran)
Reward for registering 240 Pokémon in the Blueberry Pokédex
Item Printer (Poké Ball Lotto)

Distribution

Games Event Language/Region Distribution period
BW Master Ball Japanese November 19 to December 3, 2011
February 28 to March 16, 2012
XY Dragon King Cup Master Ball Japanese January 19 to March 9, 2014
The Thieves and the 1000 Pokémon Master Ball Japanese July 19 to October 15, 2014
ORAS Pokémon Scrap Master Ball Japanese December 1, 2014 to May 15, 2015
Omega Ruby Alpha Sapphire National Pokédex guide Master Balls Japanese December 5, 2014 to November 30, 2015
Japan Cup 2015 Master Ball Japanese May 12 to August 1, 2015
CoroCoro Challenge Master Ball Japanese October 6, 2015 to January 11, 2016
XYORAS Pokémon Scrap 2016 Master Ball Japanese March 1 to August 31, 2016
April 28 to August 31, 2016
USUM Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon Guide Book Master Balls Japanese December 6, 2017 to January 31, 2019
Pokémon Global Link gift Master Ball All February 13 to March 29, 2018
SMUSUM 7-Eleven Clear file Master Ball Japanese July 10 to October 1, 2018
SwSh Japanese Pokemon Scraps Master Ball Japanese November 20, 2020 to April 30, 2021
Pokémon Adventure 25 Master Ball South Korea April 26 to September 30, 2021
SV The Indigo Disk Launch Master Ball All December 14, 2023 to January 3, 2024
As a held item
Games Event Language/Region Distribution period
XYORAS Pokémon General Election 720 Greninja Japan July 3, 2016
July 16 to September 30, 2016

NPC usage

 
Kieran's broken Master Ball

Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon

The villainous team leaders in Team Rainbow Rocket keep their Pokémon in Master Balls.

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet

AI SadaS and AI TuroV keep their Pokémon in Master Balls. During The Indigo Disk, Kieran briefly keeps Terapagos in a Master Ball, which is broken by Terapagos after it assumes its Terastal Form.

Cameo appearances

Pokémon X and Y

A Master Ball appears in the Poké Ball Boutique in Lumiose City.

In the side series games

Pokémon Stadium 2

In Pokémon Stadium 2, Master Ball appears in the mini-game Furret's Frolic. It is the largest ball in that mini-game, appearing later than the rest and being worth 5 points.

Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness

In Pokémon XD, Master Balls are used in the Battle Bingo game. The player starts with two and can gain an extra one from one of the ? spaces.

Pokémon Dream World

 
A Master Ball-themed rug from the Dream World

A decorative rug themed after the Master Ball could be found in the Hero's Catalogue in Pokémon Dream World.

In the spin-off games

Pokémon Trading Card Game 2: The Invasion of Team GR!

The Master Ball card is available in Pokémon Trading Card Game 2: The Invasion of Team GR!.

 
Master Ball (GB2)

Pokémon GO

 
A Master Ball in Pokémon GO

In Pokémon GO, the Master Ball was first made available on May 22, 2023. It can be used to catch any encountered Pokémon without fail. It cannot miss, as a cutscene of the Pokémon being caught is triggered when one is thrown, bypassing the usual throwing mechanic. The Master Ball is the only Poké Ball that can be selected from the player's Bag during the bonus challenge of a Raid Battle or Team GO Rocket battle. It also cannot be discarded from the Bag.

Using a Master Ball does not reward bonus XP for Curveball Throws or hitting the target circle. Instead, a 1,000 XP "Master Ball Throw" bonus is rewarded.

Description

Games Description
GO The best Poké Ball with the ultimate level of performance. With it, you will catch any wild Pokémon without fail.

Acquisition

Games Finite methods Repeatable methods
GO Complete Let's GO!

Pokémon Pinball series

In Pokémon Pinball, the Master Ball multiplies bonus points by ×4. In Pokémon Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire, the Master Ball multiplies bonus points by ×5.

The Master Ball does not have the same use as in the core series, since catching a Pokémon is always guaranteed, even with a regular Poké Ball.

   
Sprite from
Pinball
Sprite from
Pinball: Ruby & Sapphire

Super Smash Bros. series

 
The Master Ball in Super Smash Bros. for 3DS

Super Smash Bros. Brawl

In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, the Poké Ball trophy mentions the Master Ball, identifying it as the strongest variety of Poké Ball.

Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS/Wii U

SmashWiki has more about this subject:

In Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS/Wii U, the Master Ball appears as a throwing item. It functions much like the Poké Ball item, but the Master Ball summons rare and Legendary Pokémon, Zoroark, or a Goldeen.

 
Master Ball trophy in Super Smash Bros. for 3DS

The Master Ball also appears as a trophy in both versions of the game.

Trophy information

NA: These valuable, powerful balls can capture any wild Pokémon. In Smash Bros., hard-to-find Pokémon often pop out of them. You can easily identify a Master Ball by the distinct purple appearance and large M on the top. A Pokémon within a Master Ball may turn the tide of battle.

PAL: A rare type of Poké Ball that never fails to catch a Pokémon. Throw one in this game, and the Mythical or Legendary Pokémon inside will come to your aid. Master Balls are easy to identify due to their purple colour and the large M on them. Use one to quickly turn the tide of any battle!

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, the Master Ball functions the same way as it did in the previous games; summoning a Legendary or Mythical Pokémon, Zoroark, or Goldeen.

Gallery

Artwork

     
Artwork from
Generation I
Artwork by
Ken Sugimori
Artwork from
Scarlet and Violet

Sprites

         
In-battle sprite in
Generation II
Sprite from
Furret Frolic's
instruction screen in
Stadium 2
In-battle and
Summary sprite from
Generation III
Summary sprite from
Colosseum
Summary sprite from
XD: Gale of Darkness
       
Summary sprite from
Generations IV and V
In-battle sprite in
Generation IV
Summary sprite from
Battle Revolution
In-battle sprite in
Generation V

Models

         
Model from
Furret's Frolic in
Stadium 2
In-battle model
X, Y, Omega Ruby,
Alpha Sapphire
, Sun, Moon,
Ultra Sun, and Ultra Moon
Model from
Super Smash Bros.
for Wii U
Model from
Let's Go, Pikachu! and
Let's Go, Eevee!
Model from
Generation VIII

In the anime

 
A Master Ball in the anime

Main series

In Beauty and the Beach and A Hot Water Battle, Misty had a beach ball that was decorated to look like a Master Ball. This Master Ball beach ball reappeared in Pikachu's Ice Adventure. In The Song of Jigglypuff, a picture of a Master Ball appeared on a billboard on a building in Neon Town.

In Whiscash and Ash, Sullivan attempted to use a Master Ball in a last-ditch attempt to catch Nero, an oversized wild Whiscash that had long eluded him. However, Nero swallowed the Master Ball and disappeared back into the water, not being caught. At the end of the episode, Nero was seen playing with the Master Ball on its tongue.

A Master Ball appeared in Which One ~ Is It?, a Japanese ending theme from Pokémon the Series: Diamond and Pearl.

In Found You, Fuecoco!, the Master Ball was mentioned in one of Nidothing's videos.

 
A Master Ball in Pokémon Origins

Pokémon Origins

The Master Ball never made an actual appearance in Pokémon Origins, only appearing in Silph Co. president's secretary's demonstration in File 3: Giovanni. She mentioned that the Master Ball was still in development, and only existed as a prototype. She also told that it was why Team Rocket had taken over their office building; they intended to accelerate the development of the Master Ball and then steal it when it would be completed, making sure they would be the only ones possessing it. After Team Rocket was driven out of the building by Red, it was mentioned that the development of the Master Ball was being put on hold for a while.

In the manga

Movie adaptations

In Mewtwo Strikes Back!, Dr. Fuji attempted to use a Master Ball to catch Mew, but failed.

Pokémon Adventures

Red, Green & Blue arc

In And Mewtwo... Three!, Blaine was revealed to be in possession of a Master Ball. Soon afterwards, Red used it to catch Mewtwo for Blaine.

X & Y arc

In Malamar Traps, Blaine was revealed to have re-caught Mewtwo with the Master Ball after reuniting with it at the Pokémon Village.

Pokémon Diamond and Pearl Adventure!

In (Violent) Earthquake! Cyrus's Consuming Ambition, Cyrus gave Hareta a Master Ball as recognition for him having moved his emotions, telling him to bring it with him to Mount Coronet. In Bonds Connect Across Space-Time..., the Master Ball fell out of Hareta's pocket at the Spear Pillar, and Professor Rowan told him about its capability to catch any Pokémon without fail. In an attempt to stop the battle between Dialga and Palkia, Hareta tried to use the Master Ball to catch Palkia, but Palkia, having total control over space, was able to make itself disappear out of Master Ball's way and then smack it aside.

Pokémon Pocket Monsters

Red used a Master Ball in The Legendary Pokémon Appears!! to catch Articuno.

Pokémon Zensho

Satoshi obtained a Master Ball from the Silph Co.'s president in Saffron City as thanks for rescuing his company from the hands of Team Rocket.

Gallery

In the magazines

 
Article about the Master Ball
(Pokémon Power magazine)

Pokémon Power

In Pokémon Power (issue 2, page 3), it is said that the Master Ball was the latest invention of Professor Oak. He publicly revealed the existence of the Master Ball in a press conference. Professor Oak licensed the Master Ball design to Silph Co., and this company's early field tests were said to be promising.

In the TCG

 
Original print of Master Ball
 
Master Ball as an ACE SPEC Item card
Main article: Master Ball (Gym Challenge 116)

The Master Ball was first introduced as a Trainer card in the Pokémon Trading Card Game in English during the Original Series in the Gym Challenge, and in Japanese during the Original Era in the Expansion Sheet 2. It has been reprinted as a Trainer card in the Japanese-exclusive Intro Pack Neo (in the Neo Era), the Japanese-exclusive Pokémon VS expansion (in the VS Era), the English e-Card Series (the Japanese e-Card Era), and the English EX Series (the Japanese ADV Era and PCG Era). As a Trainer card, this card allowed the player to look at the top 7 cards of their deck and add one Pokémon card from those cards to their hand, then shuffle their deck. Notably, as this card only lets the players look at 7 cards from their deck, this card has a chance to fail to get any Pokémon, which is unlike how the in-game item works.

During the English Black & White Series (the Japanese BW Era), Master Ball was reprinted as an ACE SPEC Item card in the Plasma Blast expansion in English and the Blastoise + Kyurem-EX Combo Deck in Japanese. This print has a new effect which more closely resembles the item's in-game mechanic, allowing the player to add any 1 Pokémon card from their deck to their hand without any drawback. As this print is an ACE SPEC card, a player may only have 1 copy of Master Ball in their deck. This print of Master Ball was later reprinted during the English Scarlet & Violet Series (the Japanese Scarlet & Violet Era) in the Japanese Starter Deck & Build Sets and the English Temporal Forces expansion with the same effect, but a new ACE SPEC layout. The old pre-Black & White effect of Master Ball would be inherited by Great Ball, starting with its Emerging Powers print.

The Master Ball was also featured as a card in Pokémon Trading Card Game 2: The Invasion of Team GR!

Trivia

In other languages

Language Title
Chinese Cantonese 大師球 Daaihsī Kàuh *
掌門球 Jéungmùhn Kàuh *
掌門精靈球 Jéungmùhn Jīnglìhng Kàuh *
究極寵物小精靈球 Gaugihk Chúngmaht-Síujīnglìhng Kàuh *
精靈球 Jīnglìhng Kàuh *
Mandarin 大師球 / 大师球 Dàshī Qiú *
掌門球 / 掌门球 Zhǎngmén Qiú *
魔獸球 Móshòu Qiú *
究極神奇寶貝球 Jiūjí Shénqí-Bǎobèi Qiú *
终极神奇宝贝球 Zhōngjí Shénqí-Bǎobèi Qiú *
  Czech Mistrbal
  Dutch Meesterbal*
  Finnish Mestaripallo
  French Master Ball
  German Meisterball
  Indonesian Bola Master
  Italian Master Ball
  Korean 마스터볼 Master Ball
  Polish Masterball
Portuguese   Brazil Bola Mestra*
Master Ball*
  Portugal Bola Mestra
  Russian Мастер-Болл Master-Boll
Spanish   Latin America Bola Maestra
  Spain Master Ball
  Thai มาสเตอร์บอล Master Ball
  Vietnamese Bóng Master



  This item article is part of Project ItemDex, a Bulbapedia project that aims to write comprehensive articles on all items.