Pokémon Pinball Retrospective: When employing a wildly different genre helped the beloved monsters

Looking Back: A Pokémon Pinball Retrospective

Pokémon Pinball was a beloved game that was released in 1999 for the Game Boy Color. The game combined the classic pinball gameplay with the popular Pokémon franchise, creating a unique and entertaining experience for fans of both. The game was developed by Jupiter Corporation and published by Nintendo, and it quickly became a fan favorite.

In Pokémon Pinball, players had to hit targets and bumpers on the pinball table to capture different Pokémon. The game featured two tables, the Red Table and the Blue Table, each with their own set of Pokémon to catch. The game also had a unique feature where players could tilt the Game Boy to nudge the pinball, adding an extra layer of control to the gameplay. Overall, the game was a fun and addictive experience that kept players coming back for more.


Pokemon Pinball is a unique blend of the classic game of pinball and the world of Pokemon. The game was originally released in 1999 for the Game Boy Color and later re-released for the Game Boy Advance in 2003. The game features two different tables, the Red table and the Blue table, each with their own unique layout and features.

The gameplay is relatively simple, with the player using the flippers to keep the ball in play and hitting various targets to score points. However, what sets Pokemon Pinball apart from other pinball games is the inclusion of Pokemon. As the player hits certain targets, they can capture different Pokemon, adding them to their Pokedex.

The game also features various bonuses and power-ups, such as the Evolution Mode and Bonus Tables, which can be unlocked by hitting specific targets. Additionally, there are various bumpers and obstacles on the tables that can affect gameplay, such as Team Rocket, who will try to steal the player's ball.

Pokemon Pinball also includes a Rumble feature, which allows players to feel the vibrations of the ball as it moves around the table. This feature was particularly impressive for its time and added an extra layer of immersion to the game.

Overall, Pokemon Pinball is a fun and unique spin-off of the Pokemon franchise. Its blend of pinball gameplay and Pokemon catching mechanics make it a must-play for fans of both genres.

Graphics & Sound

One of the most impressive features of Pokémon Pinball is its graphics. The game's visuals are colorful, bright, and detailed. The Pokémon themselves are rendered beautifully, with each one looking distinct and true to their original designs. The various pinball tables are also well-designed, with different themes and layouts that keep the game fresh and interesting.

The sound design in Pokémon Pinball is also noteworthy. The game features a variety of catchy tunes that change depending on the table you're playing on. Each Pokémon also has its unique sound effects, which add to the game's overall charm. The sound effects for hitting targets and bumpers are satisfying, and the sound of the ball rolling around the table is realistic.

Overall, the graphics and sound in Pokémon Pinball are excellent and add to the overall enjoyment of the game. Whether you're a fan of pinball or Pokémon, there's no denying that this game is a visual and auditory treat.

Why It's Still Unique

Pokémon Pinball was released in 1999 for the Game Boy Color and it still stands out as a unique game in the Pokémon franchise. Here are a few reasons why:

  • Pinball gameplay: Pokémon Pinball combined the classic pinball gameplay with the world of Pokémon. Players used flippers to keep a Poké Ball in play and catch various Pokémon that appeared on the table. It was a refreshing take on the traditional pinball game.

  • Two tables: The game featured two different tables, each with its own set of challenges and Pokémon to catch. This added variety and replay value to the game.

  • Realistic physics: The game's physics engine was impressive for its time and made the pinball gameplay feel realistic and satisfying.

  • Pokémon collection: Catching Pokémon in the game added them to the player's collection, which could be viewed in a separate menu. This added a sense of progression and completion to the game.

Overall, Pokémon Pinball was a unique and enjoyable spin on the classic pinball game. Its combination of pinball gameplay, Pokémon catching, and collection mechanics made it stand out in the Pokémon franchise and it's still worth playing today.

Why You Should Play It Today

If you're a fan of Pokémon or pinball, or both, then you should definitely check out Pokémon Pinball. Here are a few reasons why:

  • It's a unique combination of two beloved games: Pokémon and pinball. You get to catch Pokémon while playing pinball, which is a lot of fun.

  • It's a great way to experience the first generation of Pokémon. The game features all 151 original Pokémon, so you can catch 'em all just like in the original games.

  • The game has a lot of replay value. There are two different tables to play on, each with its own unique challenges and Pokémon to catch. Plus, there are bonus stages and mini-games to keep things interesting.

  • It's a great way to relax and unwind. Pinball is a classic game that's easy to pick up and play, and the Pokémon theme adds an extra layer of fun.

Overall, Pokémon Pinball is a great game that's definitely worth checking out. It's a fun and unique way to experience the world of Pokémon, and it's sure to provide hours of entertainment.