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The Union Room (Japanese: ユニオンルーム Union Room) allows players the interact directly with other players. It is the successor to the Cable Club that was present in Generations I and II. Other Trainers appear in the Union Room as representations of nearby players who have also entered the room. In Generation III (more specifically, Pokémon FireRed, LeafGreen, and Emerald), the Union Room requires the GBA Wireless Adapter to be attached to the Game Boy Advance to enter, and in Generation IV, it can be entered using the Nintendo DS's native wireless support. The player can exit the Union Room by stepping on the warp tile, which will send the player back to the entrance of the Union Room in the Pokémon Center.
Inside the Union Room, Trainers may:
- Chat in a group of 2-5 Trainers using the easy chat system
- View the Trainer Card of another Trainer
- Enter two Pokémon up to level 30 for one-on-one battle (Generation III)
- Enter Pokémon for one-on-one battle in any format (Single, Double, Triple, Rotation) (Generation V)
- Register a Pokémon for trade, or trade for a registered Pokémon (Generation III)
- Trade Pokémon (Generation IV)
- Mix Records with up to 5 people (Generation IV)
- Draw (Generation IV and V)
- Spin Trade (Pokémon Platinum, HeartGold, and SoulSilver) and Generation V)
Despite the high potential of the Union Room and the variety of activities there, they are often empty, except if a certain time is scheduled by a group of friends or relatives. This is because once in a Union Room, only specific Union Room actions can be carried out.
The receptionist in the Union Room will talk to the player if no other Trainers are present in the Union Room at the time. If the player selects "Converse" in Generation IV with the most recent message from the player being the default, she will say, "Welcome to the Union Room! I'm the only one here right now, but please do bring your friends for some fun and excitement! If you have time on your hands, I'm also here to chat. You see, I have a lot of time on my hands..."
While in the Union Room, every player is assigned a random Trainer class, such as Ace Trainer or Bug Catcher, to help differentiate between players. In Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum, this can be changed by talking to the Psychic in the Oreburgh City Pokémon Center. In HeartGold and SoulSilver, this can be changed by talking to the Ace Trainer in the Violet City Pokémon Center. In Black and White, this can be customized on the player's Trainer Card.
Generation IV and V
This lets each player see the other's Trainer Card. If a Sinnoh player views a Johto Trainer Card, there won't be any Badges obtained, due to the difference in region. Similarly, if a Johto player views a Sinnoh Trainer Card, there won't be any Badges obtained.
In the case of Generation V games, as the Badge case is separate from the Trainer Card, players cannot view other players' obtained Badges.
In Generation V
Many of the controls are now on the touch screen;
- The first button allows the player to post messages and view previously sent messages. These messages use the Easy chat system. The second button from the left will post a message telling other players to tap it if they wish to battle the challenger. The middle button will do the same but offer a trade instead of challenge on the bottom screen. The fourth button from the right invites players to a drawing session. The fifth button invites players to a spin trade.
- Main article: Trade
The Union Room is usually used to trade Pokémon between two players within a short distance of each other. When a traded Pokémon comes to the player's cartridge, it will get 1.5× the experience the player's original Pokémon would get. The only drawback, however, is that the traded Pokémon will only listen to the player if they have enough Badges. Otherwise, the Pokémon may not obey the new Trainer. Trading is often used to get version exclusives, such as Magmar and Electabuzz or Stunky and Glameow.
When trading, the Pokémon offered to trade is selected by its owner. When two Pokémon are selected, the game asks each player whether or not they want to trade. If both players select yes, then the trade will commence. It is also possible to look at the summary of each Pokémon when the trade option is selected.
Spin trading was introduced in Pokémon Platinum. It allows up to 4 players at a time to trade eggs. The egg that each player receives is randomly determined. Each player must have one egg in order to spin trade.
- If two Generation IV games in different languages are connected using the Union Room, the other language's word for "hello" will be displayed when the character from the other language is spoken to. For example, an English copy connected to a Japanese copy will display "こんにちは," while the Japanese copy it is connected to will display "Hello."
- In Pokémon Platinum and Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver, Rotom will revert to its normal form when the player enters the Union Room.