I started a new game on Fire Red USA and got a Charmander and some other Pokémon. I didn't name them, just left the species name. I then trade them to other Fire Red cartridge (now Spanish version).

The thing is I started leveling them up and the Charmander moved to Charmeleon but kept its old name. The same thing happened with an Abra that evolved to Kadabra.

I saw the thing about not being able to rename nicknamed traded Pokémon but I want to know if, being the way I explained, these Pokémon should change the names to the next one as expected.

I hope I made myself clear enough. Many thanks in advance.


Yes, it is expected behaviour for the names not to change in this case. In Fire Red and Leaf Green, the game will treat the foreign name of a traded Pokémon as a nickname. Hence it will not change on evolution. From generation 4 onwards (and the introduction of the GTS) they fixed this, so that a foreign non-nicknamed Pokémon will change into the current game's language when it evolves. (For example, if I had a German Charmander called "Glumanda" in an English copy of Pokémon Diamond (its normal German name), when it evolves it would be called "Charmeleon"). In generation 8 this was changed again so that the Pokémon would keep the foreign evolved language (my Glumanda becomes a Glutexo). Fire Red is a generation 3 game, so my English copy of Fire Red would assume Glumanda is a nickname, and evolve it into a Charmeleon called Glumanda.


Note that the reason Pokémon originating from foreign games are always treated as nicknamed was to fix a bug in the first gen 3 release:

In the 1.0 release of the English versions of Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire, the nickname flag of Japanese Pokémon is not set when they evolve, so the Pokémon's species name will be adjusted accordingly (e.g. Pichu's Japanese species name is ピチュー and the player nicknames it PICHU, then trades it to an English version and evolves it, causing its name to become PIKACHU). However, since the English games still render the name in the Japanese font, an evolved Japanese Pokémon that has a name longer than five characters will cause a crash while attempting to load the Pokémon List or send it out to battle (in the aforementioned case, the game will try to render it as PIKACHU instead of PIKACHU). This was fixed in the 1.1 release by adding an additional check to the name function used during evolution so that the Japanese Pokémon's name is not altered, effectively treating it as if it were a nickname. The European releases and subsequent Generation III games also have this check.


  • Many thanks for your detailed answer. I was confused because Spanish and English versions share Pokémon names I'd say for every creature. But with your example it's pretty clear. So just to confirm, I guess I won't be able to change the name once it's a Charizard in Lavender Town because the game treats it as a nickname, right? – yeuk0 May 17 at 17:11

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