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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Pokémon character
Pokémon official artwork of Greninja.png
National Pokédex
FrogadierGreninja (#658)Bunnelby
First gamePokémon X and Y (2013)
Designed byYusuke Ohmura
Voiced byYūji Ueda (Japanese)
Billy Bob Thompson (English)

Greninja (ゲッコウガ, Gekkōga, /ɡrɛˈnɪnə/ greh-NIN-jə) is a Pokémon species in Nintendo and Game Freak's Pokémon franchise, introduced in Pokémon X and Pokémon Y, that has since appeared across a wide variety of Pokemon media. It is the final evolution of Froakie, the Water-type starter Pokemon of X and Y, with either the ability 'Torrent' or 'Protean', with 'Battle Bond' as an event ability, enabling it to become Ash-Greninja, and the immediate evolution of Frogadier. Categorized as the "Ninja Pokémon", Greninja is a Water- and Dark-type Pokemon who is a frog-like master of swiftness and stealth.

It appeared prominently in the XY series of the Pokémon anime as one of Ash Ketchum's primary Pokemon, voiced by Yūji Ueda. This Greninja used its bond with Ash to transform into a unique and powerful form, Ash-Greninja, which was later released to the games as an empowered form of Greninja accessible to players of the Pokemon Sun and Moon Special Demo Version. Greninja was introduced as a playable fighter to the Super Smash Bros. franchise with Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U as one of the Pokemon series' five representatives, and was integrated into manga such as Pokémon Adventures.

Greninja has been met with a very positive reception, quickly becoming one of the most popular Pokémon of the sixth generation because of its endearing design and strength in competitive play. Its popularity has resulted in its integration into various merchandising and promotions of the Pokémon franchise.[1]

Concept and characteristics

Greninja is a streamlined frog-like creature with dark blue skin and a beige underbelly, with long limbs and thin, slender physique particularly reminiscent of tree frogs. What resembles a pink scarf is actually its prehensile tongue wrapped around its head. Two long, ear-like protrusions extend from both sides of its head and connect with a smaller horn-like structure in the middle by azure blue-colored webbing. Spots of the same azure coloring can be found on each thick thigh, arguably resembling ninja stars or battle scars along with a stubby tail that wraps inwards resembling a phallus. Much like a frog, Greninja has webbed feet, wall-clinging suction cups on each digit, and powerful hind legs. It shoots streams of compressed ejaculate patterns from its palms. A large bubble can be found on each limb. A bipedal creature, Greninja can comfortably stand on its hind legs, but leans on one of its front limbs in a crouching stance when in battle. When at rest its eyes are white with hyphen-shaped pupils, but when engaged they gain red, oval-shapes irises, white pupils, and a narrow gaze. It only weighs 88.2 lbs. (40 kg), but is still quite tall at 4' 11" (1.5 m).[2]

It shares a motif of role-playing game classes with its Grass-type (Chesnaught) and Fire-type (Delphox) counterparts; while the former resemble a knight and witch respectively, Greninja draws heavy inspiration from the ninja. In Japan, frogs and toads have long been associated with ninjutsu through the folk story "The Tale of the Gallant Jiraiya" (児雷也豪傑物語 Jiraiya Gōketsu Monogatari), a story about a ninja who can shapeshift into a large toad.

Greninja is able to move with "a ninja's grace",[3] and has a design and set of abilities associated with Ninjutsu. Among its attacks are the formerly exclusive Water Shuriken, which lets it quickly fire throwing stars made from compressed water,[3] Shadow Sneak, and Double Team.[4] It is also the only Pokemon to learn Mat Block, which shields the user's side with a flipped-up mat. The Protean ability, which lets the user camouflage to the type of the attack it uses, is exclusive to Greninja and the chameleon Pokemon Kecleon (as well as the former's pre-evolutions). Capable of vanishing and reappearing quickly, it enjoys toying with enemies in such a manner.[3] It is very adaptable, learning many moves such as Bounce, Extrasensory, and Low Kick from different types.[4]

Greninja's stealth and swiftness are unique among Water-type starters, contrasting with previous designs like Blastoise and Swampert. It shoots jets of compressed water from its hands, as opposed to many other Water-types that shoot water from their mouths. It was created by Yusuke Ohmura, who designed the Water-type starters of the previous two generations as well as the mascot creatures for X and Y, Xerneas and Yveltal.[5][6] Greninja's design was finalized by Ken Sugimori, Game Freak's art director.

As Pokémon X and Y take place in Kalos, a fictional region inspired by France, Greninja's name combines the French word for frog (grenouille) and "ninja".[7] It is used for the English, Spanish, and Italian localizations of X and Y. Ironically, a completely different name is used in the French localization, with "Amphinobi" combining the French word for amphibian (amphibie) and "shinobi". Its Japanese name is "Gekkouga", combining the Japanese word for croak (げこっ geko) and the Koga ninjutsu school (甲賀流 Kōga ryū).[8]


In video games

Pokémon game series

Greninja debuted in Pokémon X and Y, which was released internationally on October 12, 2013 for the Nintendo 3DS. As is the case for most Pokemon evolved from starters, Greninja is rare except from choosing Froakie at the game's beginning and fully training it. It can only be obtained otherwise by evolving a Friend Safari Frogadier, by fully evolving the Froakie named "Froabble" in-game rival Shauna trades to the player after the game's completion, if Fennekin was the chosen starter, or through trading with another player. It can be transferred to Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire through trade, or into Sun and Moon and Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon through the online storage system Pokémon Bank. Though very rare, Greninja has a Shiny variant obtainable in the games that is jet black with a red tongue.

In X and Y, if the player chooses the Fire-type Fennekin as their starter, rival Serena/Calem will choose Froakie and eventually raise it into Greninja. If they choose the Grass-type Chespin, the other rival Shauna will do so instead.

Greninja has been incorporated in spin-off Pokémon games as well. In the action game Pokémon Rumble World, Greninja is the back boss of Dewdrop Bay's Castle Moat, and can be recruited as a playable character. It is the boss of Area 03's fifth stage in Pokémon Picross, of Renegade Meadow in puzzle game Pokémon Battle Trozei, and of Expert Stage 24 in Pokémon Shuffle. Through evolving the player character of Froakie, Greninja is playable in Pokémon Super Mystery Dungeon, and is even included on the game's box art.

Other Nintendo games

Outside of the Pokémon series, Greninja also appears in Nintendo's Super Smash Bros. series. Greninja was included as a new fighter in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U in 2014,[9] returning in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate in 2018.[10] Greninja's inclusion was revealed during the Super Smash Bros. Direct on April 8, 2014, alongside returning characters Zero Suit Samus, Sheik, Yoshi, and fellow Pokémon Charizard. The game's director, Masahiro Sakurai, stated that he decided to include finishing development, and he working very closely with Game Freak's conceptual illustrations and making his own interpretations of the character. Its characteristics in the Pokémon games are reflected in Smash, being an agile fighter with ninja-like stealth capable of attacking opponents with water from its palms. Its final smash, Secret Ninja Attack, incorporates Greninja's signature move Mat Block. Its home stages include Prism Tower, the Pokémon Gym of Kalos' capital city on the 3DS version, and Kalos Pokémon League on the Wii U version. Ultimate granted Greninja its anime debuted Battle Bond form, “Ash-Greninja” as part of its Final Smash move, confirming the playable Greninja in this game series as a male.

Through completing the challenge modes of Super Mario Maker, the player can unlock a Mystery Mushroom for Greninja that can be used in the player's customizable levels. When Mario makes contact with the Mushroom, he takes on Greninja's likeness and animations until he finishes the level, makes contact with an enemy, or loses a life. Greninja has the same sound bits as Mario, instead of those from Pokémon games; this is also true for Pikachu, Charizard, Jigglypuff, Mewtwo and Lucario but not for Bulbasaur, Charmander or Squirtle.

In the anime

Multiple Greninja have made appearances in the XY series of the Pokémon anime. While the Pokémon was first alluded to in the episode "A Rush of Ninja Wisdom!", it made its formal debut in the 17th Pokémon movie, Diancie and the Cacoon of Destruction, under the ownership of a thieving ninja named Riot. Ippei and Sanpei, two recurring brothers in the anime, both have a Greninja. They both chose Froakie as their starter in tribute to a folkloric Greninja that saved their home village. Series protagonist Ash Ketchum's Greninja is the most prominent; he first appeared as a Froakie in the first episode "Kalos, Where Dreams and Adventures Begin!", was caught by Ash in the following episode "Lumiose City Pursuit!", and evolved from Frogadier into Greninja in episode seven of XYZ "A Festival of Decisions!". Uniquely, Greninja and Ash are able to temporarily link their consciousnesses during battle. When such an exchange occurs, the former physically morphs to somewhat resemble Ash, a form called "Ash-Greninja". In episode 23 “Facing the Needs of the Many!”, Ash released Greninja back into the wild so that he could protect Kalos with Squishy and Z-2, which are two Zygarde cells, from the evil roots Team Flare left behind after their defeat.

In live-action films

A band of Greninja appears in the live-action film Pokémon Detective Pikachu, but as minor antagonists working as hired guns for Clifford Enterprises against Tim Goodman, Harry Goodman as Detective Pikachu, and Lucy Stevens. Lucy's Psyduck manages to defeat them by using its full power that has blown Greninja away from them. This band of Greninja have been victims of illegal experimentation by their mastermind Howard Clifford, but with help from any of his evil scientists, possibly like Dr. Laurent.[11]

In printed adaptations

In the Pokémon Adventures literary adaptation of Pokémon X and Y, Yvonne has a Greninja named "Croaky". She chose it as her starter in "Fast-Thinking Froakie" from Professor Sycamore, her rival X chose Chespin, and Fennekin had its Poké Ball misplaced after an accidental encounter with Xerneas and Yveltal. As a Greninja, Croaky is shown to be a very serious and efficient Pokémon, which is an accurate portrayal of ninja-like discipline but contrasts with its implied mischievous nature in the video games.

Other media

Since its introduction, Greninja has regularly been featured in Pokémon merchandise. In the Pokémon Trading Card Game, Greninja-EX is one of the flagship cards associated with the Kalos Power Tin set[12] and in promotion for BREAKpoint Wave Slasher Theme Deck.[13] Ash-Greninja has also been incorporated into the trading card game[13] and lineup of plushies. Key chains, soft toys, and figures of the Pokémon are all available on the online Pokémon Center store as well as in local toy store chains. Greninja was introduced among the fourth wave of amiibo, Nintendo's lineup of collectible toys-to-life figures. The figure is based on its appearance in Super Smash Bros. and is compatible with many different video games for the Wii U, Nintendo 3DS, and Nintendo Switch. Initially released on April 3, 2015 as a Toys "R" Us exclusive, Greninja proved to be so desirable that the figure sold out within just 30 minutes.[14]


Greninja has proven to the most popular Pokémon introduced in X and Y. Once revealed, it was praised as "great and... likely to be popular just off its design alone."[15] A 2016 Japan election held by The Pokémon Company determined that Greninja was the most popular Pokémon species in the country.[16][17] Ash-Greninja has been described as "a stylish addition" and a "huge asset" to the player's team.[18]

Reception to its inclusion in Super Smash Bros. has been mostly positive, with many online reviewers appreciating the uniqueness of the character and being genuinely surprised by its unveiling.[9] The inclusion of Greninja in the Detective Pikachu film also received praise for staying true to its ninja-like portrayal in the video games and anime, though some reviewers criticized the species' "slimy tongue scarf" as "super disgusting" when rendered in CGI.[11]

Greninja was named the 2020 "Pokémon of the Year", based on results of a vote by fans in a poll run by Google and The Pokémon Company.[19][20]


  1. ^ "Greninja Takes The Top Spot Of 720 Pokémon In A Recent Japanese Popularity Contest". Siliconera. 2016-06-08. Retrieved 2019-06-02.
  2. ^ "Greninja". Pokémon/Nintendo. 2013-10-12.
  3. ^ a b c "Greninja | Pokédex | More at". Retrieved 2018-09-17.
  4. ^ a b "Greninja – #658 – Pokédex". Retrieved 2018-09-17.
  5. ^ Dixon, Scott (2014-05-09). "Champagne, macarons and Pikachu? Paris plays host to Europe's first Pokémon Center". Rocket News/SOCIO CORPORATION.
  6. ^ Luffy, Monkey (2013-10-24). "Pokémon X & Y Artist Struggled With Xerneas And Yveltal Designs". WordPress.
  7. ^ Campbell, Colin (2013-07-05). "How France inspired Junichi Masuda in making Pokémon X and Y". Polygon.
  8. ^ Dolly, Cure (2014-01-30). "658 Gekkouga (Greninja)". WordPress.
  9. ^ a b Hernandez, Patricia. "The Internet Reacts To New Smash Bros. Reveals". Kotaku. Retrieved 2018-09-18.
  10. ^ Minor, Jordan (2019-01-03). "The Ultimate Super Smash Bros. Character Guide: Greninja". Retrieved 2019-06-02.
  11. ^ a b Hoffer, Christian (2018-11-12). "'Detective Pikachu': Who is Greninja?". WWG. Retrieved 2019-06-02.
  12. ^ "Pokémon TCG: Kalos Power Tin |". Retrieved 2018-09-18.
  13. ^ a b "Ash-Greninja-EX | XY—Promo | TCG Card Database |". Retrieved 2018-09-18.
  14. ^ Makuch, Eddie (2015-04-03). "Greninja Amiibo Sells Out in Under an Hour". GameSpot. Retrieved 2018-09-18.
  15. ^ "Taking A Look At The Pokémon X & Y Starters Final Evolution (spoilers) – Hardcore Gamer". Hardcore Gamer. 2013-10-10. Retrieved 2018-09-18.
  16. ^ "ポケモン映画公式サイト「劇場版ポケットモンスター みんなの物語」". ポケモン映画公式サイト「劇場版ポケットモンスター みんなの物語」 (in Japanese). Retrieved 2018-09-18.
  17. ^ "Japan's 100 most popular Pokémon have been crowned". Polygon. Retrieved 2018-09-18.
  18. ^ "'Pokémon Sun and Moon' Team Builder: The ultimate guide to planning your Pokémon team". Retrieved 2018-09-18.
  19. ^ Dalvin Brown (27 February 2020). "The world's Pokémon of the Year is Greninja, according to a poll held by Google". USA Today. Retrieved 27 February 2020.
  20. ^ "The 2020 Pokémon of the Year is…Greninja, the Ninja Pokémon!". YouTube. February 27, 2020. Retrieved February 27, 2020.

External links

This page was last edited on 17 February 2021, at 15:23
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