Savvy Pokémon fans will know that the 3DS is a very important artifact in the Pokéworld. As the only console that has Pokémon Bank, the storage system for all your digital battle-pets, and the Virtual Console, the 3DS is basically Noah's Ark for Pokémon, allowing players to transfer their shinies, competitive Pokémon, and beloved childhood starters across generations of games.
And, according to the 3DS eShop charts, that might be what scores of fans are now doing, following the news that the eShop has only a year left to live. The top ten recent bestsellers are as follows:
- Pokémon Crystal
- Pokémon Yellow
- Pokémon Red
- Pokémon Dream Radar
- Pokémon Gold
- Pokémon Silver
- Pokémon Blue
- The Legend of Zelda: The Oracle of Seasons
- The Legend of Zelda: The Oracle of Ages
- Pokémon Trading Card Game
Granted, the top ten usually includes a lot of Pokémon games — this chart from just a couple of weeks ago shows as much — but the Pokédominance could imply that people are racing to rescue their old Pokémon.
Pokémon Bank is going to be free from March 2023, which could be why we're not seeing it on the charts — the service is currently an annual subscription that costs $5 a year.
It's also interesting to see people downloading the AR game Pokémon Dream Radar, which occasionally drops in and out of the 3DS charts, perhaps due to its sub-$3 pricing. Dream Radar is a 3DS exclusive that allows you to grab a bunch of rare legendaries with unique Hidden Abilities, and unique formes for the three original Forces of Nature, Tornadus, Thundurus, and Landorus. You can only transfer these Pokémon into Black and White 2, however.
If you want to get in on the hustle, we have a walkthrough on Pokémon Bank and the Nintendo Switch equivalent, Pokémon Home, which you can access by clicking here.
Pokémon Bank is compatible with the following games:
- Pokémon X & Y
- Pokémon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire
- Pokémon Red & Blue
- Pokémon Yellow
- Pokémon Sun & Moon
- Pokémon Ultra Sun & Ultra Moon
If you want to transfer Pokémon from Black & White or Black & White 2, you'll have to download the linked free application Poké Transporter.
Of course, this is all speculation — maybe people just really, really like the old Pokémon games. Including Dream Radar.
Are you panic-saving all your old Pokémon, or just revisiting the good ol' days on 3DS? Let us know in the comments.
This is absolutely wishful thinking, but I would love if Game Freak see this and release a (probably limited) physical version of Pokemon Bank on cartridge so that anyone can then transfer pokemon over. It absolutely won't happen, but I don't want anyone to lose the option of transferring their childhood mons.
Basically this is all driven by people who want to import Pokémon with rare and unique movesets to the current competitive scene, or otherwise work on collecting them all (which is an important milestone for shiny hunting).
The 3DS along with a DS Lite enables you to import Pokémon up from all seven past generations, up to Pokémon Home and the eight generation on Nintendo Switch.
The only games the 3DS cannot import Pokémon from are the Game Boy Advance titles.
This is definitely due to all the Pokémaniacs who want to be sure that they can truly "catch 'em all" while they still can.
I definitely understand, as I'm currently trying to rush my way through Pokemon Crystal and Pokemon Omega Ruby.
I’ve long since hacked my 3DS so I can’t be going online with it. Those shiny Pokémon I caught along the way will just have to stay in their OG games.
I think it's people just grabbing the games while they can. I think you need a Pokemon Bank sub to be able to download Poketransporter, so if they wait for Pokemon bank to go free, Poketransporter will no longer be available and they won't be able to transfer anything out of the old games.
I was tempted as well, but I can't even transfer all of my Pokémon into the current gen games.
Would rather not transfer my Pokémon if they're held hostage by a Pokémon Home subscription.
They were already at the top when I checked the charts a month ago.
I doubt it's related to bank. It's probably a combination of:
Maybe also to do with Pokemon being the biggest selling franchise In the world and a lot of people want to experience where It all started without buying fakes or spending an Insane amount of money for the cartridge
Nice to see the oracle games on there
Please read the article before repeating things I said in the article in the comments, folks 😭
I already have Pokemon X, Y, Alpha Sapphire, Omega Ruby, Sun, Ultra Moon in retail copy.
Sun Moon series are my least favorite so I can ignore to get Moon and Ultra Sun version.
Not a fan of very old Pokemon games on Gameboy machines so I can ignore them.
I'd assume everyone, like me is just trying to pick up games while they still can. I wish Home allowed more connectivity, and there was a main game where we could use the whole pokedex worth of pokemon. If I can't use my Mons in a game I ain't sending them to die in Home. When the Bank breaks down eventually, I'll probably just transfer them back to the physical carts. Though they arent safe there either, I've already had Alpha Sapphire crap out on me, I don't want to think about all the event exclusive pokemon I lost in there.
I’m thrilled to see the oracle games on the list too, they deserve it
I'm definitely doing this. I already have USUM digitally and I've wanted them all digitally for a while now. I'm probably going to do the same for Switch games at some point. I also recommend getting all of the Nintendo Selects digitally.
I’m not surprised. The old Pokémon games are one of the best Virtual Console offers. 10 bucks each is a great deal, honestly. And the Celebi event being unlocked in Gen 2 is such a fun bonus.
Personally, when I heard the eshop was closing, I went ahead and bought Blue and Gold, the only two I was missing. I already had the other four and I know I’ll want to do a new play through of those gens somewhere down the line, so might as well get them while I can.
Aren't most Pokemon games stupid expensive in physical form? Better on the wallet to get digital before you can't.
@KateGray Well as someone who did read the article, thank you for making me realise that Dream Radar still works. I thought it was useless but I'll be grabbing that before it disappears!
Many Game Boy games: 3.99, 4.99
Game Boy Pokemon games: 9.99
I completely understand why the Oracle games are on that list. Buying GBC copies of those games is prohibitively expensive these days.
Good copies are. Especially if you have the box with the manual. Carts alone routinely hit 100 bucks or more.
Mystic (a PlayStation centered YouTuber) bought a boxed copy of Gold. He paid 400 dollars for it. And he honestly got a decent deal on it. I’ve seen them go for more by watching eBay auctions.
If by some miracle you locate a sealed copy, it goes for thousands easily.
Want to complete the Gen 1 and 2 Pokedexes with the least games possible? The minimum is three - Yellow, Crystal, and either Gold or Silver. You'll also need at least two 3DS systems since games on the same system cannot trade with each other. Crystal and Gold / Silver have to trade so they must be on different systems.
Crystal is necessary because it's the only G2 game with Celebi. It's also the only G2 game where you can get multiple Fire, Leaf, Water, and Thunder Stones. (By registering certain NPCs' phone numbers.) Gold & Silver only get one of each stone per save file. (Unless you're lucky with Mystery Gift.)
Yellow is preferred because it can get all three Kanto starters in one playthrough and all of its missing Pokemon are available in both Crystal and Silver. (Gold is missing the Vulpix and Meowth families.) If you use Red or Blue instead you must be careful which G2 game you get - Red MUST be paired with Silver and Blue MUST be paired with Gold. Swapping them will make you miss one evolution family. (Crystal + Red + Gold cannot get Vulpix & Ninetales, while Crystal + Blue + Silver cannot get Mankey & Primeape.)
One of the G2 games must be played twice to get all of the Johto starters, but it won't take long. Take different starters in each game, play until you unlock trading (deliver the Mystery Egg to Professor Elm and catch at least one Pokemon), trade Game B's starter to Game A, reset Game B's save file, pick the third starter.
Yellow must be played twice to get both the Dome and Helix Fossils. This will take a long time, since in both playthroughs you need to reach Cinnabar Island (7th gym) and resurrect the fossils into Kabuto and Helix. Red or Blue will need a third short playthrough to get the third Kanto Starter.
Any G2 game that is going to trade with a G1 game will need its Time Capsule unlocked. Reach Ecruteak City (4th gym), go in the Pokecenter, talk to Bill, and wait 24 hours. (I don't know if advancing the 3DS's clock will work.) When trading with G1 games all the Pokemon in your G2 party must be G1 species with only G1 moves. You may need access to the Move Deleter in Blackthorn City (8th gym). He's in the house west of the Pokemart.
I can't believe the whole brewhaha over this.
@KateGray Sorry, we're only here to comment on what we think the title says 😂
Oh wow, I just downloaded Crystal about 2 hours before this.
@TheRedComet I'd say not only the Oracle games, but GB, GBC, GBA, DS and 3DS physical copies are expensive now (the latter a little less than the others). It's pretty easy to understand why some games will be heavily downloaded as a last resort. At least that's what I'm doing
This has very little to due with Pokemon Bank or the 3DS eShop closure. The old Pokemon games have been dominating the 3DS eShop for the last 6 years.
Pokemon Crystal in particular has effectively been the best-selling 3DS eShop game since its Jan 2018 launch.
I wonder why Nintendo hasn't opted to at least keep the essential options available on a limited version of the eShop. If you look at the Wii Shop Channel, they had the courtesy of giving us a tiny, condensed version for the store that featured the Skyward Sword Update Channel and a small number of other essential apps. Why not do the same with Pokemon Bank, the only link that connects GBA all the way to the Switch?
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