Pokémon Trading Figure Game
The Pokémon Trading Figure Game is a two-player game played with collectible Pokémon Trading Figures made by Kaiyodo. It shares some characteristics with other collectible miniature games, such as Mage Knight and HeroClix. It also shares similarities with the Pokémon Trading Card Game, using similar terminology and the same type and rarity symbols. It was released in Europe, Australia, and Southeast Asia in fall 2006, and North America and Japan in 2007.
Following the initial test phase in the European and Australian market, the TFG's American transition was plagued by delays. Coupled with the cost of the figures and an arguable lack of support within the Pokémon Organized Play program, the TFG was officially discontinued on June 2, 2009 following an announcement by Organized Play director Dave Schwimmer. Only one expansion, Next Quest was released, and a second, Groundbreakers, was announced, but remained unreleased. An Unnamed Third Set was also set for release in 2009 as stated by go-pokemon.com, but like Groundbreakers, this also was unreleased.
The discontinued Pokémon Duel mobile game, released in Japan in April 2016, used rules almost identical to the Trading Figure Game. Many figures in Duel were based on figures from the TFG, with slight tweaks to probabilities.
One-player starter sets included three Pokémon figures with bases, one Trainer figure with base, a two-sided playmat with a green 6-on-6 arena on one side and an orange 3-on-3 quick start arena on the other, a two-sided collector's sheet with a how-to-play guide on one side and a figure checklist on the other, a rulebook, and three trainer cards.
Two-player starter sets are a combination of two one-player starter sets with an additional figure.
In Australia, booster packs contained two random Pokémon figures without bases. They may also sometimes have a Trainer card.
Elsewhere, boosters came with 1, 2, or 3 figures. The 1 figure boosters contain 1 visible figure. The 2 figure boosters contain a visible figure and a secret figure. The 3 figure booster contains a visible figure, a secret figure, and a promo figure of one of the Sinnoh starter Pokémon. In the USA, the packs may include crystal and pearl figures.
The objective of the game is to be the first to land on one's opponent's Goal space on the playmat. To do this, players move Pokémon figures around on the playmat itself. Each turn, a Pokémon can move from one adjacent spot to another as many times as it has Move Points (MP). Besides the Goal space, the playmat tentatively has a Pokémon Center space, a bench, and a battlefield. Pokémon start on the bench, and move to the Battlefield. If they lose a battle, they go to the Pokémon Center spot. They do not return to the bench until another Pokémon is sent to the Pokémon Center.
Pokémon figures can be removed from their bases. This allows the Pokémon to switch between black and white bases so the two players' Pokémon can be distinguished.
Spinning and battles
Each figure has a spinning mechanism and a number of colored areas it can land on. When Pokémon are on adjacent spots, both players will spin Pokémon and they will have a battle. The colors are organized hierarchically to determine the outcome of the battle:
- Blue beats all and the Pokémon dodges.
- Purple beats White and any Purples with fewer stars. Purple areas typically have additional effects on either the player's Pokémon or the opposing Pokémon, such as inflicting a Special Condition.
- White beats weaker Whites, and will knock the opposing Pokémon out, forcing it to move to the Pokémon Center space.
- Gold areas were set to appear in the Unnamed Third Set. Based on the moves detailed in these areas, it is theorized that they were intended to be an increased-priority move of sorts; how they would have worked with the existing mechanics is unknown, however.
- Red is a miss and loses to everything else.
Any ties result in nothing happening. In the event that a Pokémon is surrounded (i.e. all spots around it are occupied by an opposing Pokémon), it is Knocked Out without battling.
- Main article: Trainer card (TFG)
These are not the same cards from the Pokémon Trading Card Game, though there are some similarities in their design. These work with Trainer figures, which are spun to make sure the Trainer card works, to create various effects in the battle.