The Pokémon franchise is gigantic, with numerous characters, regions and, of course, Pokémon crammed into each new adventure. In this series of features we explore some of Pokémon's most (and least) memorable people, places, items and creatures you've encountered time-and-again. In this first part we examine some of the Trainers you'll encounter throughout the series, from player characters to rivals to other notable people. Be warned that there may be spoilers in this article. Let's get going!


First Appearance: Pocket Monsters Red and Pocket Monsters Green
Most Recent Appearance: Pokémon Black and White Versions 2

"Welcome to the World of Pokémon!"
This is the greeting that Professor Oak gives to 11-year-old Red at the start of the Gen I Pokémon games. Being the very first playable character in the games, many people got their start by taking Red on an adventure throughout the Kanto region, defeating powerful Gym Leaders and earning badges, thwarting the diabolical plots of Team Rocket, and attempting to catch each of the 151 Pokémon found throughout the land, all the while being impeded by his rival Blue. Eventually, Red became the Champion of the Pokémon League, and the rest is history...or so we thought. Red made a second appearance in Pokémon Gold and Silver as the former Champion, his position usurped by Dragon Master Lance of the Elite Four. The player encounters Red quietly training atop Mt. Silver, hoping to one day reclaim his title.

Blue Oak

First Appearance: Pocket Monsters Red and Pocket Monsters Green
Most Recent Appearance: Pokémon Black and White Versions 2

Rude, arrogant, and with an apparently acute sense of smell, Blue was the rival to Red in the Gen I Pokémon games. Blue's arrogance may be partially attributed to his status as Professor Oak's grandson, but his skills are most definitely not in question, as he is a tough opponent from the get-go. Upon Red's choosing between Bulbasaur, Charmander or Squirtle, Blue instantly snatched up the Pokémon with a clear type advantage over Red's trusty companion. Throughout the adventure, Blue seemingly popped out of nowhere to challenge Red, being defeated every time. Once Red defeated the Elite Four, he found that Blue had managed to become Champion already, and, after a gruelling battle, managed to knock Blue down a peg. Blue then received a lecture from his grandfather about how if he had cared for his Pokémon he would not have been bested so easily. Three years later, Blue became the Leader of Viridian Gym, giving the Earth Badge to worthy Trainers.


First Appearance: Pokémon Crystal Version
Most Recent Appearance: Pokémon Stadium 2

In the past, Pokémon games only let you play as a boy, with the developers aiming the franchise at young males. Once they realised how many girls enjoyed playing each adventure, they decided to revolutionise the formula. Thus, Pokémon Crystal introduced Kris, the first ever female player character. It was a small addition, but it set a new benchmark for the franchise, opening up the lands of Johto and Kanto to more players than ever before. Kris would not see a comeback in Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver, instead replaced by another new character, Lyra. The backlash was swift, with many fans complaining about Lyra's replacing of their beloved Kris, which just goes to show how much of an impact one girl made on an entire series.

Cheryl, Mira, Riley, Marley and Buck

First Appearance: Pokémon Diamond and Pearl Versions
Most Recent Appearance: Pokémon Platinum Version

One feature notable in the animé but absent from the games was the ability for the player to team up with other characters. Pokémon Diamond and Pearl included sections in which the player would adventure with one of five characters: Cheryl and her Chansey in Eterna Forest, Mira and her Kadabra in Wayward Cave, Riley and his Lucario in Iron Island, Buck and his Claydol in Stark Mountain, and Marley and her Arcanine in Victory Road. When travelling through these areas with their partner, the player's Pokémon were healed after every battle. In addition, two wild Pokémon would appear at the same time, a feature carried over to the Gen V Pokémon games. These characters appeared as Tag Battle partners in the Battle Tower, as well as opponents in Pokémon Platinum's Battleground.

Well, that was our first look into the Pokémon franchise. Stay tuned for the next part! Smell ya later!

See you next time! victory

Credit to Bulbapedia for the images! Find it at

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I really enjoyed this feature GamerZack Smile
Nice work dude this is an awesome article. Wink
Thank you! Remember to read the next part, when we study the studiers of the Pokémon world! Wink
Nice article! But Red is and always was the champion, he just didn't want the position in the Pokémon League to focus on his training. He should return in XY with Level 100 EV trained pokémon!
No Unova region characters?
Oh well I still enjoyed this feature. Smile
Amazing feature mate this was one of the best reads I've had for quite some time! :-D
How many parts will this series of features have? This feature was fantastical! Cool
Beautiful absolutely beautiful your feature was really fun to read!
I loved it! I love you
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