Pokémon Adventures is definitely one of my favorite manga series of all time (and it’s not even in my top 10, how awesome are those series then?), but there a lot of unclear things about the English version of the manga because there are different versions released of the same thing. So I thought I’d make a guide so you know what to buy!
The Pokémon manga series started in Japan under the name of Pocket Mosnters Special. VizMedia changed this to Pokémon Adventures.
Original Japanese Version
The original Japanese version of Pokémon Special (shortened as PokéSpe) has been serialized since 1997 in CoroCoro Ichiban! magazine. The manga series focuses mainly on the games storyline, in contrast to the anime which has an unique storyline. There are 46 volumes released in Japan as of right now. The whole manga series has been divided into different story arcs. Every video game has it’s own arc. These are the current story arcs:
- Red/Green/Blue Arc (vols. 1-3)
- Yellow Arc (vols. 4-7)
- Gold/Silver/Crystal Arc (vols. 8-15)
- Ruby/Sapphire Arc (vols. 15-22)
- FireRed/LeafGreen Arc (vols. 22-26)
- Emerald Arc (vols. 26-29)
- Diamond/Pearl Arc (vols. 30-38)
- Platinum Arc (vols. 38-40)
- HeartGold/SoulSIlver Arc (vols. 41-43)
- Black/White Arc (vols. 43-?)
- Black2/White 2 Arc (vols. ?-?)
- X/Y Arc (vols. ?-?)
I have volumes 1-3, 7 and 8 of the original Japanese version of Pokémon Special.
America’s Different Versions
First of all, VizMedia released tons of different versions of the same manga series. For example: there are these large versions in a more American comic style that read from left to right, there are compilations volumes called “The Best of Pokémon Adventures” and there are the ‘real’ releases of Pokémon Adventures. There are also some smaller versions of the Pokémon Adventures Black and White series, which are smaller and thinner than an average sized Viz graphic novel, but Viz stopped printing them after they announced their ‘normal’ sized versions.
So VizMedia released/is releasing the Pokémon Adventures manga in different series, which are the following:
- Pokémon Adventures 1-29 (volumes 1-29 of PokéSpe) [Currently released up to volume 19]
- Pokémon Adventures Diamond/Pearl/Platinum 1-11 (volumes 30-40 of PokéSpe) [Currently released up to volume 9]
- Pokémon Adventures HeartGold/SoulSilver 1 and 2 (volumes 41 and 42 of PokéSpe)
- Pokémon Adventures Black and White 1, 2-? (volume 43, 44-? of PokéSpe)
This is also the order to read them in.
The return of Pokémon Adventures
At first VizMedia only released Pokémon Adventures up to volume 14 (the final volume of the G/S/C arc) but fans kept asking them to continue the series, so they did. So after 2 years volume 15 finally came out and after that the volumes came regularly (volume 18 will be coming out in October). This made tons of fans happy, including myself. I was also wondering if Viz would release all of the volumes, or just stop after a specific arc like before, so I asked them on their Facebook page.
And they are planning to release the whole series of Pokémon Adventures! Awesome news!
I hope you have some more clarity now of which Pokémon Adventures series you need to buy to enjoy the original story.