, released in Japan as , is a Pokémon
based on the video games. Satoshi Tajiri
once stated that the Pocket Monsters Special series is closest to what he imagined the Pokémon world to be: "僕が伝えたかった世界に最もちかいまんがです。" (lit. "This is the comic that most resembles the world I was trying to convey.")
The series is written by Hidenori Kusaka and illustrated by Mato for the first 9 volumes. Satoshi Yamamoto took over from Mato (who was ill at the time) and has not stopped since.
The manga was translated into English in North America by VIZ Media, but publication stopped in 2001 at Volume 7 due to poor sales, likely due to the influence of the anime adaptation of the games that came later, and to less degree the sheer size and cost of each book. Recently, Viz has begun re-releasing the series in the form of "The Best of Pokémon Adventures: Red" and "The Best of Pokemon Adventures: Yellow", respectively, this time for $7.95 each, $6 less than nearly a decade ago when they first began to publish the manga. In Southeast Asia, Singapore publisher Chuang Yi, currently translates Pokémon Adventures into English, and continues to translate new volumes to this day, so far up to volume 27. Jilin Fine Arts, in collaboration with the VIZ Media Shanghai Branch, has translated the manga into Chinese. In Taiwan, it is published by Ching Win, who translates it into Mandarin and releases it in their monthly CoroCoro Comic magazine.
is divided into several distinct parts, and these, in turn, are divided further into volumes and many smaller chapters. There are seven major divisions at present, with five of them completely published, and one of them partially-published, as manga in 28 volumes.
Pokémon Adventures: Red, Blue & Green
The first story is based on the Red
, and Blue
versions of the game. It is 3 volumes long as to reflect the three original versions of the game, with volume one being on a red palette, volume two on green, and volume three on blue.
It shows Red
, the protagonist, and how he received Bulbasaur from Professor Oak
and gets his Pokédex to start on his Pokémon journey, collecting Pokémon and battling gym leaders for the eight coveted gym badges. He later meets his rival Blue
(who received Charmander
) and is oddly enough, Oak's own grandson. Later in his journey, he encounters con artist Green
, who sells him fake Pokémon items. She has stolen a Squirtle
, the one stolen from Oak’s lab and evolved it into a powerful Wartortle.
Red goes on to battling gyms after having been informed of them by the overweeny rival and he manages to receive the Boulder Badge, Cascade Badge, and the Rainbow badge from Brock, Misty and Erika respectively (who are plotting to defeat Team Rocket). He also teamed up with Misty (the Cerulean City gym leader) to foil the plans of Team Rocket on Mt. Moon and retrieved her brainwashed Gyarados, which later became his own. Other achievements include his capture of various Pocket Monsters, namely Pikachu in Pewter City, Snorlax when it blocked a route in a bike tournament, Eevee, who had been experimented on by Team Rocket, Aerodactyl from the Old Amber, Misty's Gyarados, and so on and so forth with less-used Pokémon. In addition, his Bulbasaur evolves into Venusaur and his Poliwhirl to Poliwrath.
Later, Oak had been kidnapped by Team Rocket for creating a Mewtwo, and Red, Blue and Green arrive at Saffron City to take on the elite of Team Rocket. Red’s opponent is Electric-type trainer Lt. Surge, Blue’s opponent is Poison-type ninja trainer Koga, and Green’s opponent is the Psychic gym leader of Saffron City, Sabrina, with each Rocket boss having one of the three legendary winged Pokémon, Articuno, Zapdos and Moltres. They managed to defeat Team Rocket and save Oak. Red's Ivysaur evolves into Venusaur in the process, and Green's Clefairy into Clefable utilising Red's Moon Stone. Red then travels to the Indigo Plateau to battle his rival Blue, having gained seven badges, but also prevails against the evil bio-weapon Mewtwo and Team Rocket's leader and legendary missing Viridian Gym Leader, Giovanni, on the way.
Red later battles Blue in the Pokémon League Championships and emerges victorious, claiming the title of champion of the Pokémon League. Blue is second place, and Green finishes third, after Professor Oak withdraws from the competition.
Pokémon Adventures: Yellow
The next storyline is very
loosely based on the Yellow
version of the game, serving mainly as an original story to bridge the gap between the original adventure and the events in Johto. It is 4 volumes long.
Red has disappeared after receiving a challenge letter sent to him by Lorelei of the Elite Four. They plan to lure him to them, so as to get information on Giovanni’s whereabouts. They also needed his Earth Badge. Only Red’s Pikachu, Pika, managed to escape, Red having been encased in ice. Yellow decided to go look for Red, as Red had helped her catch a Rattata to train her in the skills of battling.
Later, Lorelei catches up with Yellow and Bill, who found his way to Yellow. Lorelei traps them inside a cave using her Dewgongs's Ice Beam. Dewgong's Ice Beam merged with Cloyster's Spike Cannon to make deadly missiles. Yellow attached Pika's Pokéball to her fishing rod and used a small opening to cast Pika outside to see this. Yellow used her Viridian Forest-given ability to see what Pika saw. Anticipating Lorelei's actions, Yellow does the same with an empty Poké Ball to have Lorelei destroy the decoy. A well-placed Ratatta breaks the ice with its teeth. Before she leaves, Yellow says her name was "Amarillo del Bosque Verde" (Spanish for Yellow of the Viridian Forest).
Yellow, Blaine, Blue, Green, Bill, Lt. Surge, Koga and Sabrina join forces to bring down the Shitenou (Japanese for Elite Four) together. They found out that Lance’s master plan was to use the Gym Badges and create an amplifying effect at Cerise Island to power up a mysterious Legendary Pokémon and destroy all humans in the world except themselves. They felt that humans and Pokémon were not meant to coexist.
Red turned up later at Cerise island to help Surge and Bill defeat Bruno. It is also revealed that Giovanni was the one who rescued Red from his ice coffin. The trainers send their power to Yellow, and with their combined strength she manages to defeat Lance.
Pokémon Adventures: Gold, Silver & Crystal
The third adventure is based on the Pokémon Gold, Silver
, and Crystal
, versions of the game. It also includes the trainers from the First and Second chapters. It is seven and a half volumes long, which is slightly longer than the first and second storylines combined.
It features the protagonists Gold, Silver and Crystal, and is centered mostly around the Johto region. In accordance with the games, Team Rocket tries to make a comeback, but instead of being defeated before Gold reaches the Pokémon League (as it happens in the game), Team Rocket actually attacks the League. Also, the main goal in the story is not for Gold or Crystal to collect all the badges, but for Gold, it is to team up with a Cyndaquil and get Totodile back from Silver (who stole it), and for Crystal, it is to complete the Pokédex.
Pokémon Adventures: Ruby & Sapphire
The Ruby & Sapphire Saga is based on the Ruby
versions of the game. It is also 7 and a half volumes long. It features Ruby
, and their bet to each other: 80 days for Ruby (a Pokémon coordinator
, though that title is never mentioned outside the anime) to win all the Contest Ribbons in Hoenn, and for Sapphire, a powerful trainer in her own right, to battle all the Gym Leaders for the 8 badges.
In their travels, they meet new companions like the gym leaders of the Hoenn region and the avid news reporter Gabby (or Maryann) and her cameraman Ty (who play a minor role in the games). Team Magma and Team Aqua is introduced here, as they attempt to awaken the legendary Pokémon Groudon and Kyogre to conquer the world, and Ruby and Sapphire take notice after encountering several main members in their journeys. In the end, the gym leaders, Ruby, and Sapphire must protect the Hoenn region together from the awakened Groudon and Kyogre, but importantly, will the two trainers manage to keep their bet and who will come up to the top?
Pokémon Adventures: FireRed & LeafGreen
The next story, returning to Red, Blue, and Green, is loosely based on the Sevii Islands portion of the FireRed
versions of the game. The plot consists of Team Rocket trying to capture Deoxys
, and Red, Blue and Green’s efforts to stop them. Along the way, they must rescue Blue's grandfather, Professor Oak, and Green's parents, who have been kidnapped by Deoxys. Yellow and Silver are introduced into the plot halfway through the saga, which culminates in a deadly battle aboard Team Rocket's airship back in Kanto. At the end of this saga, Red, Yellow, Green, Blue, and Silver are caught in an energy clash and have their bodies turned to stone. Though Mewtwo was also caught in the attack, his body is nowhere to be seen (hinting capture).
Pokémon Adventures: Emerald
This story is based on the Emerald
version of the game. Part one features Emerald
, who is hired by Crystal and Professor Oak to catch Jirachi
in seven days before it is captured by someone else. He is also trying to accomplish his dream, which is to challenge the seven facilities of Battle Frontier and conquer them all. In the process, Emerald had met with the other two Hoenn Pokédex holders, Ruby and Sapphire. However, a villain named Guile Hideout captured Jirachi first, and Emerald must rescue it.
Part two starts where part one left off, and introduces the 6 Pokédex holders not already in this saga into the Emerald series, albeit five of them as statues. (See above, Fire Red & Leaf Green saga.) Emerald, Ruby, and Sapphire take the Battle Tower challenge, which ends with the head of the Battle Tower, Anabel, who is possessed, beating Emerald's team before collapsing. Guile Hideout is revealed to be Team Aqua's leader, Archie, and Gold and Crystal come to the Battle Frontier. Yellow, Red, Silver, Blue, and Green are already there, though - Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald have no idea that the five statues at one end of a room on top of the Battle Tower are actually the 5 petrified Pokédex holders. Guile Hideout, or rather, Archie, summons a fake Kyogre made of water to flood the Frontier...
Pokémon Adventures: Diamond & Pearl
The latest installment, which is based on the Diamond
versions of the game, details the adventures of two Pokémon Comedians in Sinnoh
who accompany the heiress of the house of Berlitz on her journeys due to a mix-up. Berlitz believed the boys to be her bodyguards, while the boys (acting as a comedy duo) believed escorting the snobby girl is some sort of reality TV
show. Recently, Lady Berlitz has defeated Fantina's gym challenge after confronting Cyrus at Celestic Town. No DP chapters have been collected into volumes as the Emerald series was put on hiatus and needs to be completed before the DP series sees compilation (this was also the case with Ruby/Sapphire and FireRed/LeafGreen).
- Red - The first protagonist and champion of the 9th Pokémon League. Initially shown as a rash young trainer, he has matured over the course of the series. He started with a Poliwag since he was a little kid. The Poliwag, then Poliwhirl, evolved into Poliwrath to save Red from drowning. When he started his journey, he received a Bulbasaur from Professor Oak. It eventually evolved to a Venusaur, but he temporarily traded it with his rival Blue for a Charizard in FRLG, though they traded back at the end of the saga. His other Pokémon are Gyarados, Snorlax, Pikachu, and an Aerodactyl. He specializes in Pokémon Battles (The Battler).
- Blue (known as Green in Japan) - The cool-headed yet somewhat cocky rival of Red. Now, they get along pretty well. He had the starter Pokémon Charmander, now a Charizard. He excels at training Pokémon (The Trainer), even those that are not his. Current Team in the FRLG saga consists of Charizard, Golduck, Machamp, Rhydon, Porygon2, and Scizor.
- Green (known as Blue in Japan) - A crafty and perky girl who stole a Squirtle from Professor Oak. She is a friend of Yellow’s and deceived Red into buying fake items. Now a friend of Red. Has a past with Silver. Her Squirtle has since evolved into a Blastoise. She excels at evolving Pokémon (The Evolver). Her current team comprises Blastoise, Wigglytuff, Clefable, Granbull, Nidoqueen, and Ditto.
- Yellow - The happy-go-lucky and kind-hearted protagonist. Yellow has a rare magical power to heal Pokémon (The Healer), a trait seen only in special individuals from the Viridian Forest area. She disguised herself as a boy on a mission to save Red. She also has a magical power to read Pokémons' minds, which is also from the Viridian Forest. She always sleeps after using her abilities due to their high use of her energy. During her adventures, she borrowed Red’s Pikachu. She now has her own Pikachu, a female named Chuchu. Her current team consists of Pikachu, Golem, Omastar, Dodrio, Butterfree, and Raticate.
- Gold - The good-hearted, but somewhat perverse, hero of the Gold & Silver saga. The third protagonist. Very rash, even more so than Red. He has the Pokémon Pichu, and is capable at hatching Pokémon (The Hatcher). His current team consists of Typhlosion, Aipom, Mantine, Politoed, Sudowoodo, Sunflora, and Pichu.
- Silver - Gold’s cold and distant rival, and the son of Team Rocket leader Giovanni. Has a past with Green. He had the starter Pokémon Totodile (stolen, like Green’s Squirtle), now a Feraligatr. He specializes in trading Pokémon (The Trader).
- Crystal - An intelligent and energetic expert at catching Pokémon (The Capturer). She has caught every non-legendary Pokémon for Professor Oak (she got the legendary Pokémon’s data with the help of the 1st generation trainers). She had a Chikorita for a starter Pokémon, which is now a Meganium.
- Ruby - The well-meaning but a bit obnoxious protagonist of The Fourth Chapter, and Gym Leader Norman’s son. He hates Pokémon battles and prefers to compete in Pokémon Contests, as a result of what had happened to him and Sapphire when they were young. Ruby received the starter Pokémon Mudkip, now a Swampert.
- Sapphire - Daughter of Professor Birch and Ruby’s rival. She is very wild and often dresses in clothes made of leaves. She loves battling and thinks Pokémon Coordinators (like Ruby) are prissy, as a result of what had happened to her and Ruby when they were young. She had Torchic for a starter Pokémon, now a Blaziken.
- Emerald is the sly-minded but midget-sized central character of the fifth arc. He initially did not have any Pokémon, but later was joined by a Sudowoodo and Dusclops. He also carries a concealed gun known as an E-Shooter as a tool to calm Pokémon. Emerald was hired by Crystal to compete in the Battle Frontier to protect the legendary Pokémon Jirachi from an evil man named Guile Hideout. Emerald also stole a Sceptile from the Battle Factory. This Sceptile was none other than the same Grovyle which was blown away from Sky Pillar while awakening Rayquaza. Emerald uses Pokémon that Crystal owns in each attraction, excluding the Battle Factory, Battle Tower, Battle Palace, and Battle Arena. He also apparently has a connection to the legendary Pokémon Latios and Latias.It is suspected that Emerald is not who he appears to be as the gem seemingly attached to his forehead bears some resemblance to the "green gem" the scientists in the Ruby/Sapphire season created.
- Diamond is a new character from Sinnoh with a gluttonous and rather dim-witted personality, though has been shown to sometimes exhibit charisma in desperate situations. He is a Pokémon trainer and a very good friend of Pearl. He has a Munchlax and a Turtwig (mistakenly given to him by Berlitz), and because of a mix-up he thinks that if he escorts Berlitz to Mt. Coronet, he’ll win a prize.
- Pearl is a new character from Sinnoh with a hasty personality and has a habit of butting into conversations and exploding with rage if someone doesn't give him eye contact. He is a Pokémon Comedian (like his friend Diamond) and has a Chatot and a Chimchar (mistakenly given to him by Berlitz), and because of a mix-up he thinks that if he escorts Berlitz to Mt. Coronet, he’ll win a prize.
- (Ms.) Berlitz is a new character from Sinnoh. She is the elegant but a bit spoiled descendent of a very wealthy and important family, and she has to travel to Mt. Coronet as part of a ritual. She receives three Pokédexes, three Pokétches, and the three starters (Turtwig, Chimchar, and Piplup) from Professor Rowan to give to her partners. She owns the Piplup and a Ponyta. Her given name is unknown; however, it will probably be Platinum, named after the upcoming Pokémon game. She is known to enter many competitions, such as Super Pokémon Contests and battling gym leaders.
The Elite Four
is an organization made up of the 4 greatest Pokémon masters in Kanto: Lance
, and Bruno
. They are one of the few people who have beaten Red before. They use Dragon, Ghost, Ice and Fighting type Pokémon respectively. The Elite Four believe that humans cannot co-exist with Pokémon, and are trying to rid the world of humans (though Bruno is not really aggressive, and is instead manipulated by Agatha). Lance plans to accomplish this with the help of a giant bird Pokémon, later revealed to be Lugia
In Hoenn, however, the Elite Four were the past winners of the Pokémon League, led by the Champion Steven , and are not evil.
Team Rocket is an organization which plots to gain wealth and power and uses rare Pokémon in their plans to do so. In Pokémon Adventures “Rocket” is revealed to be an acronym for “Raid On the City, Knock out... Evil Tusks”. It is headed by the former Viridian City Gym Leader, Giovanni. After Yellow’s battle with Lance of the Elite Four in Volume 7, Team Rocket is officially disbanded by its leader. However, in The Third Chapter, it has been revived as NEO Team Rocket by a man with ice powers, the Mask of Ice, (later revealed to be Pryce, the gym leader of Mahogany Town), who seeks to capture Celebi, a Pokémon that can travel through time.
Team Aqua is a criminal group dressed in blue that plots to expand the seas at any cost. To accomplish their goal, they are trying to awaken Kyogre, a legendary Pokémon, with the help of the Blue Orb. Team Aqua is the arch-enemy of Team Magma. Team Aqua is led by Archie, who also goes by the alias of Guile Hideout.
Team Magma is a criminal group dressed in red that plots to expand the land at any cost. To accomplish their goal, they are trying to awaken Groudon, a legendary Pokémon, with the help of the Red Orb. Team Magma is the arch-enemy of Team Aqua. Team Magma is led by Maxie.
Giovanni is the formal gym leader of the Viridian Gym. He was the head of an evil organization called Team Rocket, which was disbanded in the aftermath of the Elite Four's defeat. He returns from his trip to Hoenn in FireRed/LeafGreen saga. Later it was found out that his motive was to find his long-lost son, Silver, using the powers of Deoxys. He leads a team of powerful trainers called The Beast Trio. He proved a worthy opponent by putting up a great fight using his Deoxys against Red’s Mewtwo in a 1-on-1 battle.
Team Galactic is an organization which plots to create a new universe by obtaining the Pokémon of space and time in Sinnoh, Dialga and Palkia. So far, only the admins Mars and Cyrus have been shown in Pokémon Special: Diamond & Pearl.