Pokemon X Versus Pokemon Y: Which To Buy

Pokemon X Versus Pokemon Y: Which To Buy

Coke or Sprite? Scrambled or sunny side up? Paragon or renegade? The world is full of difficult existential questions and while you’re on your own/SOL with most of them, we here at Kotaku would like to offer a helping hand in choosing between Pokemon X & Pokemon Y.

Some context, before we talk specifics: traditionally, the main Pokemon games release in two versions. Each version has creatures that the other version doesn’t have, and this is partially done to encourage people to play Pokemon with their friends, and partially because, let’s be real, Nintendo/Game Freak probably make more money that way.

The number of version-specific Pokemon has varied from one gen to the next, and honestly? In this latest iteration, there aren’t too many version-specific Pokemon. Even if there were, the ease in which you can trade Pokemon with other people online means you don’t have to worry too much about missing out on specific Pokemon.

Still, there are some differences between Pokemon X and Pokemon Y. I won’t list all of the differences because that’d be spoiling the game, but let’s compare the major Pokemon differences you should consider before purchasing, shall we? Most of these concern version-specific Mega Evolutions, which are temporary power-ups that some Pokemon can undergo in battle.

Here’s Mega Charizard From Pokemon Y on the left, and Mega Charizard from Pokemon X on the right:

The differences: Charizard X changes from a fire and flying type Pokemon to a fire and dragon type Pokemon. Charizard Y, meanwhile, sees its special attack stat increase significantly, and gains the ability called “drought.” Drought increases the power of fire-type moves.

Here’s Mega Mewtwo from Pokemon X on the left, and Mega Mewtwo from Pokemon Y on the right:

The differences: Mega Mewtwo Y increases its special attack significantly and it gains the “insomnia” ability — as it suggests, this ability prevents Mewtwo from falling asleep. Mega Mewtwo X, meanwhile, becomes psychic/fighting type, and its attack stat increases. In addition, it also gains the “steadfast” ability, which increases its speed whenever it flinches in battle.

And now, the legendaries…

Here’s Xerneas from Pokemon X on the left, and Yveltal from Pokemon Y on the right:

The differences: Xerneas is a deer-like fairy Pokemon with the “fairy aura” ability — which increases the damage of fairy-type attacks for all Pokemon in the battle. Yveltal, meanwhile, is a dark/flying type Pokemon with the “dark aura” ability — which increases the damage dealt by dark type attacks for all Pokemon on the field.

The last question you’ve gotta ask yourself before purchasing is: which letter do you like better, X or Y? Yes, I know that sounds silly, but trust me, it matters! People will ask you what version you got; it’s like picking a sports team. That’s part of what makes it all so fun, even if there aren’t too many differences between the versions.

With all of this in mind, you should be able to choose between the versions easily. So then! Now that we’re here…which version will you be getting? Personally, I think Pokemon X has most of the cooler Pokemon, but hey. That’s just like, my opinion, man.

PS… if you really don’t mind being spoiled, here’s the full list of all the version-specific Pokemon.


  • Chose X simply due to my preference of the “blue” versions through the generations, such as:
    Blue, Silver, Sapphire and Leaf Green (did not play/purchase the DS titles unfortunately).

    • I’m exactly the same. I got blue version because all my friends purchased red versions; and then it just stuck.

    • If you go by colour, sure. But if you’re like me and simply pick the ‘offset’ game then it goes Red & Blue, Gold & Silver, Ruby & Sapphire, Black & White, and now X & Y… so Y it is.

      • Never thought about it that way before, but makes sense. I simply see it as one colour appearing more conservative/(generally)water/defense (my “blue” list) and and the other leaning towards radical/(generally)fire/attack (reds). That’s just how I’ve percieved it after all these years, save for the DS titles, haven’t a clue what kind of feels each of those are trying to express.

        • Thats a really odd way to pick versions! I thought you just meant the “offset version”, but this is really wacky!

      • Interesting. I was Red, Silver, skipped Gen3, White. So I realized I switch my choices, meaning this time I should get X. Which I was leaning towards anyway. So it all works out!

        But who really wants to pick hairs?

    • the blue flame Charizard looks bad ass and Xerneas is majestic as fuck. Yveltal reminds me too much of Lugia. X it is.

  • Hmmm Seeing as I have Yellow on GB… and Pearl on DS…
    I think Y. Although a deer pokemon is so very Princess Mononoke.

  • I’ll get X.
    It started when my brother wanted Red, so I got Blue. Then when Gold and Silver came out, Gold was more akin to “red” and so he got gold and I got blue. I got Sapphire, he got Ruby. He got diamond I got pearl. We didn’t actually get Black/White.

    Now that he wants to get back into Pokemon again, he’ll get Y and I’ll get X. Because that’s the pattern and the pattern must be adhered to. The Pattern MUST be adhered to.

  • I’m gonna go with X because of how BAD-ASS that charizard looks! 😀
    It”ll be more than enough compensation for the lame fairy-deer!

  • Only things I want from X are Aggron and Houndoom. And I don’t really need either, so… I’m happy with Y! Scary poison sea dragon kthx~

  • Okay all I want to know is where the header image came from and whether there is a wallpaper sized version of it.

  • I dont recognise any of the pokemon in the picture at the top… thus I shall stick to my GBA Pokemon Red on my DS Lite.

      • Yea I know. The new game looks awesome but I bought silver a while ago and struggled with it as there were all these new pokemon I knew nothing about Nd I spent alot of the time just trying to track down the original 150. Still once a get a 3DSXL I’ll probBly check this out.

          • Gamestop is cheaper. Just like the X and Y 3DS XL being $200 at gamestop and $250 everywhere online.

  • I don’t understand the dev preference for the fire starters. Charizard is the only Kanto final starter evolution which gets two mega evolutions. It also seems Blaziken is the only final of its generation to get any mega evolution.

    • I haven’t yet. 🙁

      I was looking at a new game to sink my travel time into and this seems like a good choice. But when given the choice between the two, I always struggle.

      • I know you can’t really compare the two but it was way easier for me to sink 7 hours into Pokemon this weekend than it was to do the same with GTA V on release. I think it’s the handheld. That aside, Pokemon will definitely work well for killing your travel time.

      • If you’re struggling I think you’re probably better off going in blind or flipping a coin. As nice as this article is it just makes it even easier to be torn between the two. Too much info. If you really want I’ll make it easy for you, I’ve got Y so you get X.

  • They really made it so you need both this generation. Because no one is willing to part with the exclusive items/pokemon from their respective version. Clever, but annoying.

  • Charizard X is better in battle than Charizard Y. Mewtwo X is better in battle than Mewtwo Y. Xerneas is the death of Yveltl.

    X=better Pokemon
    Y=better looks(in a few areas)

    I made my decision based off which letter I preferred, and ended up picking the better game anyways.

    • Are… Are you dumb? Charizard Y Has much better stats plus Drought which is instant sun. Solarbeam? No problem. Fire type moves? Almost always a one-shot. Charizard X? Type change. Thats it. And now it’s also weak to ground. Nice try.

      • Drought got nerfed. The flying type Y has is shit, giving 4x weakness to things while dragon can’t survive more with no 4x weakness.

  • I got Y because Yveltal looked so amazing on the cover art. I played until the Pokemon League, but sadly I realized in game Yveltal didn’t look as cool as on the cover, so I got X as well, because I had a Diamond and SoulSilver laying around I barely used anymore, so I traded em in to GameStop and got it for free. I got Fennekin in Y, Froakie in X, and plan on getting Chespin in Z(unless they try to make more money by making 2 games so people will buy both like Black&White 2) so everything works out. In my opinion, get both. If you absolutely love Yveltal’s look, get Y(but I assure you his wings are smaller than on the cover and you basically just look at the back side of him when using him, his only extremely cool look in-game being his over-world sprite. The other thing Y gives you is the better MewTwo. But X gives you a legendary with the new type, which makes more sense, It gives you the bad-ass Charizard, and Pokemon X just sounds WAYYY cooler, not to mention even with some good aesthetics in Y, Pokemon X just gets the better Pokemon. My plan is to beat the Pokemon League on both, then transfer all my good Pokemon to X(might be a prob with only 1 3ds… ill borrow my friends). So overall, if you were to pick one, I would pick X, unless you think you are bad-ass and don’t want anything to do with a fairy type deer, in which you should get Y, but I really recommend getting both. 2 old games gets you a free one at GameStop(IDK for how much longer), so if you had diamond/pearl AND Platinum(Total of 2, but if you got all 3 then anotherone towards your second free game :)) that’s one game, and if you have either SS or HG that’s another towards the other game(both will get you your other game) and B2 or W2 will get you your last game if you have what I said(NOTE: BLACK OR WHITE WILL NOT WORK ONLY B2 OR W2) so if you dont play your older games just get both for a really enjoyable experience :). P.S. Sorry my response is so long, I just usually type everything I think which leads to long responses. If you did read the whole thing, hope this helped you and you probably have very good patience.

  • In my opinion it doesn’t really matter which one you choose (or which starter you choose) because of the fact that you can just trade with other people and most of the time get what you want, especially if you have a pokemon with pokerus. Example if you choose charmander as your starter but you wanted all three you can just put a really good pokemon up in the GTS and get what you want. And if you want both legendaries take your time to get a REALLY good pokemon.

    Spoiler: do not read if you don’t want some of the post game to be ruined.

    Plus after you beat the pokemon league Shauna gives you a baby form of her starter. She gives you froakie if you chose chespin, fennekin if you chose froakie, and chespin if you chose fennekin.

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