Best Pokémon game on PC: Which games run the best on PC?
What is the best Pokémon game on PC? – Well, there are a lot of different games available.
Unfortunately, there are only a select few consoles that Nintendo and The Pokémon Company work with. All Nintendo consoles, such as the Switch, the DS, the Game Boy and others, can have Pokémon games. Mobile devices, like an Android or iOS device, can have some, too (though no mainline releases. Those are restricted to Nintendo consoles).
Currently, there are no official Pokémon games on the PC, but there are other options. Here’s what you can do and what you need to know.
Can I play Pokémon games on PC?
Currently, there is no official way to play Pokémon games on PC. Nintendo is infamous about their exclusives. No Mario, Zelda, Animal Crossing game or other can be released on another console. While console typically refers to an Xbox or PlayStation and their inability to get Nintendo games, it also refers to PC here. There are ways to work around this, but it’s currently impossible to go to Steam or another games library and purchase and download Pokémon games for PC.
How can I play Pokémon games with PC?
The easiest way to work around Nintendo’s exclusivity is with an emulator. These are online gaming tools that effectively grant access to any and all video games. Want to play an old PlayStation 1 game? What about Super Mario Sunshine on the NES? Emulators are the best for that.
These are usually pretty easy to access, and they have a huge library of games available, not just Pokémon games on PC.
Best emulators for Pokémon games on the PC
There are quite a few options when it comes to emulating video games on a PC. Project 64 is an excellent choice because it focuses on the N64 era. That is the era that these games were released in the Pokémon franchise:
- Pokémon Snap
- Pokémon Stadium
- Hey You, Pikachu
- Pokémon Stadium 2
- Pokémon Puzzle League
It was a great era of gaming in general, so there’s a lot of reasons to check out this particular emulator.
What makes RetroArch great is that it features a lot of different consoles. The Pokémon franchise has spanned more than a few of Nintendo’s consoles, so putting most of those together on a PC is fantastic. Additionally, it’s pretty simple and straightforward to use, which is always a bonus.
The Nintendo DS era of Pokémon gaming is arguably unmatched. Pokémon: Diamond and Pearl, Pokémon Platinum, Pokémon: HeartGold and SoulSilver and Pokémon: Black and White (and the Black 2 and White 2 sequels) were all on this console. It’s hard to find an era of the franchise more fun than this, though the Nintendo Switch era is certainly giving it a run for its money.
DsraStic is high quality emulator that has excellent resolution, nice mechanics and more. It also, unlike other emulators, allows for add-on controllers for even more customization for Pokémon games on PC. You can play some of the best Pokemon games ever released with it.
Dolphin Emulator is one of the biggest emulators out there. What makes this such a popular choice for running Pokémon or other Nintendo games on a PC is the simplistic nature. Dolphin emulator doesn’t have the largest library of offline Pokémon games for PC, but it does have a good selection and plenty of other games to try out, too.
What Pokémon games are on PC?
As mentioned, there are no official Pokémon titles on PC, but there are very similar games. Since it debuted in 1996, the Pokémon franchise has spawned a ton of copycat games. Here are a few of those similar games:
- Monster Hunter Stories 2
- Monster Rancher DX
- Monster Crown
- Siralim Ultimate
- Monster Sanctuary
- Disc Creatures
- Cassette Beasts
- Slime Rancher 2
- Slay the Spire
These may not be Pokémon titles, but they are pretty similar. They range from blatant ripoff to subtle inspiration.
Is there any Pokémon game I can play online on my PC?
While no official titles are available for download, there are a couple of online Pokémon games. First is the Trading Card Game online version. This game goes hand in hand with the trading card game. It also makes use of the code cards that come in packs of the cards. It can be a fun and easy way to get Pokémon on your PC, though.
The second is Pokémon Showdown. Here, you can match up with someone (whether by choice or random matches) and do a six-on-six battle. You set your lineup and battle it out just like a normal Pokémon game.
Off-brand Pokémon games for PC
ROM emulators are a way to play Pokémon on PC, sort of. They’re not officially licensed, but they’re off-brand versions of popular mainline games. Pokemon ROM hacks are pretty easy to download and can be very fun to play. Also, they usually offer a twist on some classic game, so it’s unique in that sense. Try one of the following for the best Pokémon game on PC:
- Pokémon Team Rocket
- Pokémon Gaia
- Omega Paradox
- Pokémon Dark Rising
- Pokémon Crystal Clear
There are tons of options on this realm and they’re easy to find and download. Just ensure your computer can run programs like this before attempting.
For now, one of these is the best Pokémon game on PC. Unfortunately, they’re not exactly legitimate. Sadly, Nintendo doesn’t play well with other game platforms, so that’s the reality for PC Pokémon fans right now.
Read also: Best Pokemon Games on Switch