Game Guides

Which to Buy: Pokemon Red, Blue, or Yellow

by Kyle Hanson


It’s the same question that gamers have been asking themselves since 1996. Which Pokemon game should I buy? Normally there are three choices to be made, but with the classic Game Boy titles making their way onto the Nintendo 3DS eShop, this time there are three. Pokemon Red, Pokemon Blue, and Pokemon Yellow are all available now, prompting players to decide which of the three is best for them.

The key differences are in what Pokemon are available in the games. This is especially true of Pokemon Red and Blue, which are functionally the same, besides this one thing. Pokemon Yellow is a bit different, offering some unique features, but also messing with the start of the game in ways that some might not enjoy.

Pokemon Yellow was very focused on Pikachu, making him your only choice at the start of the game. You can, throughout the game, catch all three of the other starters: Bulbasaur, Charmander, and Squirtle, but if you’re wanting to get one of these as your starter you might want to avoid Pokemon Yellow. Beyond that though, Yellow has some cool features, like checking in with your Pikachu to see how he is doing, and some updated sprites that might make it the best choice for many.

As far as what Pokemon are exclusive to each, here are the ones that you can only catch in each specific game.

Pokemon Red: Ekans, Arbok, Oddish, Gloom, Vileplume, Mankey, Primeape, Growlithe, Arcanine, Scyther, Electabuzz.

Pokemon Blue: Sandshrew, Sandslash, Vulpix, Ninetails, Meowth, Persian, Bellsprout, Weepinbell, Victreebel, Magmar, Pinsir.

Pokemon Yellow has most of these, but is missing Weedle, Kakuna, Beedrill, Ekans, Arbok, Raichu, Meowth, Persian, Koffing, Weezing, Jynx, Electabuzz, or Magmar.

With the recent news that Pokemon from these games will be able to transfer to the new Pokemon Sun and Moon, it’s all the more important to get the one that has the right characters for you. Luckily all the Legendary Pokemon, like Mewtwo and Zapdos are in all three, and you can get Mew in them all as well. You can’t really go wrong with any of them, but if the specific Pokemon in each isn;’t important, Yellow is probably the way to go.

- This article was updated on:March 8th, 2018

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