Here’s Why Pokemon Bank Is Exciting

Here’s Why Pokemon Bank Is Exciting

At first glance, having the ability to store Pokemon in the cloud doesn’t seem like a big deal. It’s just storage, you know? A place to put Pokemon in. Uh, ok. Neat for the collectors and obsessive Pokemon breeders, sure, but what does it mean for everyone else?

Thing is — and mind, some of this is speculation — something as small as Pokemon Bank, the recently revealed 3DS app for storing Pokemon, can have a lot of implications.

Let’s start with the most obvious one: you don’t have to worry about losing or corrupting older carts anymore. Heck, you don’t even have to worry about keeping old carts with you at all if you put your favourite Pokemon in the cloud. I’m not the only one that has way too many Pokemon carts, right? Now I don’t need to always keep them around to have access to my Pokemon, or to transfer Pokemon between games thanks to Poke Transporter — an app that will launch with Pokemon bank.

Oh and… here’s a small, appreciated detail about Poke Transporter:

Here’s Why Pokemon Bank Is Exciting

Eat your heart out, cheaters. You can’t just have a box of thousands of shiny level one legendaries!

Now, one of the long-standing difficulties about transferring Pokemon is that the early games aren’t as accessible anymore. You can’t, for instance, transfer a Pokemon from the original Red and Blue into the newer games (if you for some reason wanted to do that), and although we can transfer Pokemon from the second gen Game Boy Colour games thanks to Pokemon HeartGold and Soul Silver, Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire are a bit more difficult because they’re Game Boy Advance games. Sure, you could find an older DS and move those Pokemon up the hard way, but that’s kind of a hassle, isn’t it? Especially since the 3DS doesn’t have a GBA slot.

What if, technologicalbrian poses, Nintendo released the older games on the 3DS’s eShop?

Here’s Why Pokemon Bank Is Exciting

Kind of unlikely, I think, but geez. I’m sure they’d sell well if Nintendo actually went for it, and it would certainly make transferring between older games even easier. You could just use the same system, sans carts or much hassle to perform the transfers.

Things get even more interesting if we look beyond the major handheld games. Imagine how cool it would be if you could transfer Pokemon between, say, the new Mystery Dungeon and X & Y? That’s the sort of possibility that having access to a storage detached from any game in particular opens up. And while we haven’t had a console Pokemon game in a long while, there are rumours of a new one popping up. We know that the 3DS and Wii U can interface in some way, given that the upcoming Smash Bros game will let players transfer characters they’ve customised between the Wii U and 3DS versions. It would be pretty swell if we could transfer Pokemon from a hypothetical Wii U game into the 3DS’s Pokemon Bank, or vice-versa (or if there was any sort of communication between the handheld games and the console games, really).

Whether or not Nintendo will do a lot of this, we don’t know — it’s speculation, yes, but it’s all stuff that Pokemon Bank opens the doors for. But also…the things I’ve mentioned so far? Most of it is stuff that either things we’ve been able to do before in some form (remember Pokemon Box or Pokemon Ranch?), or is simply the streamlining/updating of some older process.

For all the hubub about Pokemon being a kids game, many of us have actually grown up with the franchise…we’re not kids anymore. We’re adults. And maybe…Pokemon is a thing we want to pass on? I’ll quote Tiny Cartridge’s dannel jurado here, as he speaks to the possibilities eloquently (note that he’s referring the Pokemon Nintendo Direct that happened last week, which you can watch here):

The interesting fascinating thing happened when Ishihara humblebragged about meeting with Shoko Nakagawa, a 28-year-old Japanese idol/actress who enjoys the Pokémon series a great deal.

“At the end of the interview, [Nakagawa] told me that she wished I would create something like Pokémon Bank. She wanted her Pokémon that she trained to be securely stored and passed down to her kids and grandkids.

She wanted something like Pokémon Bank because she wanted her kids and grandkids to remember that their grandma fought battles using Charizard.”

I had to watch that part of the video again a couple times. I’ve long considered Pokémon to be something I’ll play for as long as they put out games, but here’s someone who wants to hand down Pokémon for generations to come. Until Ishihara shared that anecdote, I had no idea that that was something I wanted to do.

Allow me to remove some context to better allow a look at how amazing this is: we’ve created memories so strong with a piece of digital information that we want to show these memories to our descendants.

I don’t know about you, but man. Thinking about handing down an old friend to a kid is pretty effin’ beautiful.

The Multiplayer is a weekly column that looks at how people crash into each other while playing games.


  • “I’m not the
    only one that has way too many
    Pokemon carts, right?”

    Does not compute ERRORERRORERROR

  • Implications would limit the use of say pokemon from red coming to pokemon X and Y because they have completely separate stats (pokemon red up to ruby/sapphire didn’t have abilities and it was only until ruby/sapphire they added in EV’s and IV’s but if they had it even for those games I would literally buy them and download them in sheer preparation (and enjoyment) of X and Y.

    • EVs and IVs have always been in the game, even since Red/Blue/Green. Though pre-2nd gen, IVs were always maxed and unimportant. It’s why using Rare-Candies using the MissingNo glitch resulted in Pokemon with extremely weak stats compared to pokemon trained up normally, they were getting crappy EV ratings from the candies.

      Though it wasn’t till the 3rd and 4th gens that they actually started building in the ability to check them in-game, as opposed to guesses and conjecture worked out over time.

  • Is there potential for single-player trading here? Start game, get starter, move to Pokemon Bank, restart game, get second starter, move to Bank, restart game, all three starters without needing another console/copy/friend?

    • Unfortunately it is Nintendo we’re talking about here. The company that can’t even give a unified account system after how long?
      Hopefully the bank account is an independent thing you can log into. Worst case scenario, it’ll be tied to a local save file, so you wipe the save, you lose your account.
      I’ll be keeping an ear out for how it’s implemented.

      • Wont the pokemon bank require a yearly sub fee? $5 iirc. It apparently would be tied into your 3ds account, so self trading starters would indeed be feasible.

        • 3DS account being tied to physical 3DS hardware… I don’t like where this could be going. I hope my paranoia is wrong on this one.

  • What if, technologicalbrian poses, Nintendo released the older games on the 3DS’s eShop?

    Nintendo will have sold another 3DS XL, that’s what. I’ve not touched pokemon since Crystal on the GBC – I’d love to play catchup.

    • It’d be a cool way to revitalise the old games, since their cartridges are dying too. My Pokemon Gold finally gave up the ghost, after so many years 🙁

  • I’m somewhat sad there was never a way to trade between G/S/C and R/S/E. If there was, it would be possible to link up all the Pokemon games ever – I could catch a Caterpie in Red, trade it to Gold, transfer to Sapphire, etc. all the way to Black 2, where it’d be waiting for me to send to Y, which can upload to cloud!
    If only…

  • I’ve only played like… red, yellow, and diamond, so I don’t really “get” the whole moving thing. Is there a reason to do it other than to just for the sake of having your old pokemon ticked off an ever-expanding collection list? Is there end-game content for maxed out pokemon that needs you to bring over your high level pokemon, or is it just to stomp everyone in the game story with your lvl100 magikarp or whatever? Doesn’t it just hugely imbalance the game?

  • People are losing there jobs. All over the world. And they are trying their hardest to make their children happy. They can barely be able to buy the game or the game system, let alone buy the Poke’ Bank.

  • People are losing there jobs. All over the world. And they are trying their hardest to make their children happy. They can barely be able to buy the game or the game system, let alone buy the Poke’ Bank.

  • So what would happen if i used the action replay to get several lv90 pokemon (not legendaries) in Platinum and then transferred it to pokemon Black 2, these pokemon got moves taught to them that cannot normally be learnt, does this mean I can’t transfer them to Pokemon X&Y?

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