Pokemon: A partial glossary


Pokemon - pronounced poe-kee-mahn - are magical critters (Pikachu, Charmander, etc.) that Pokemon trainers (i.e. humans) catch and train for battle. Like "deer," the plural form of Pokemon is "Pokemon."

Pokemon, which is a translated contraction of the Japanese term "Pocket Monsters," initially emerged in 1998 as a pair of Nintendo video games released in the U.S. for the original hand-held Game Boy. The franchise grew to include a popular TV show, trading card game, toys and, in July, the "Pokemon Go" augmented-reality app.

"Pokemon Go"

An augmented-reality app introduced in July that allows players to hunt and catch Pokemon in real-world environments. It also gives older generations another chance to complain about millenials who "refuse to look up from their phones" and engage the world around them.


Anyone who catches, trains and battles Pokemon.


Game-related locations players can visit to receive special items, such as eggs, Pokeballs and tuna poke (not really).


A place where trainers can go to work out their Pokemon to help them build physical strength - sort of like a real gym, minus the blaring soundtrack and rampant old-dude locker-room nudity.


An item used to catch and store Pokemon.


The more Pokemon a trainer catches, the higher the level number. Trainers can't battle in gyms until they reach Level 5.


By collecting a certain amount of candy, trainers can evolve a Pokemon character into a bigger, stronger Pokemon with a different name. (Charmander evolves into Charmeleon, which evolves into Charizard.)


Think of a lure as a Pokemon fertility drug. Placing a lure at a PokeStop can increase Pokemon spawn rates, making it easier for trainers to catch more Pokemon than usual.