The Pokemon Adventures series, also known as Pocket Monsters Special in Japan, follows the games much more closely than any other manga series or even the anime. Pokemon Adventures was released up until the adventures of Yellow or Chapter 7 by Viz, before being discontinued. Pocket Monsters Special, however, was first published in 1997 in Japan and has continued strong ever since. Pocket Monsters Special is written by Hidenori Kusaka and illustrated by MATO.
Pokemon creator, Satoshi Tajiri, is quoted as saying about Pokemon Adventures, "This is the comic that most resembles the world I was trying to convey."
Compared to the anime, the storyline is very complex and the characters introduce a new format to Pokemon.
Team Rocket in this story has its upper hand in Kanto, controlling some corrupt Gym Leaders. The antagonists in this manga are Team Rocket, the Elite Four, and the Mysterious Masked Man.
The characters are named after the Versions of the video games; however, in Japan, Gary is known as Green and in the US Gary is known as Blue and vice-versa for the Girl known as Blue in Japan. Every chapter cycles through the different characters, but in the end, everyone meets each other in the final showdown.
MATO's style is sort of Chibi-ish and Kasuka's storylines add a "darker side" to Pokemon. However, when the 10th book started, a new artist called Satoshi Yamamoto took over. His style is not as chibi-ish as Mato's, but the artwork looks good and this artist is very detailed in stuff like scenery. The lines for the artwork look thicker, but other than these, his artwork is fairly close to Mato's, and the story goes on.
In America, Viz released Pokemon Adventures in Volumes and Issues. Each Volume contains 5 Issues or 15 Chapters and each Issue contains 3 Chapters. When you're purchasing the manga make sure you're purchasing Volumes not Issues because an Issue is a lot smaller than a Volume.
The table below lists some of the differences between Pokemon Adventures and the Pokemon anime.
|Pokemon Adventures||Pokemon Anime|
|Has no Team Rocket Trio: Jessie, James and Meowth||Has Team Rocket Trio: Jessie, James and Meowth|
|Has two unique characters (Yellow/Green) and follows the color system of the Gameboy games||Jackson/Yoshi from Pokemon Chronicles and the Johto League is unique to the anime, rather than the games|
|Characters follow the plot as closely as in the games||Characters do not follow the game plot as closely as the the game, with some delays by Team Rocket|
|Main characters' aim is to get rid of Team Rocket in the Kanto/Johto regions once and for all||Main character's aim is to be the best Pokemon master in the world|