The sixth generation of Pokémon was announced with the reveal of Pokémon X and Y on January 8, 2013. These games were released internationally in October of the same year; the tie-in anime series began airing one week later. Pokémon X and Y continued the established tradition of two paired games with slight variations between the two versions. Between them, these games introduced 70 new Pokémon species, 51 new moves, and 26 new Abilities. New gameplay advances were added, including a new battle mechanic called Mega Evolution. Among other changes, the games' type chart was modified for the first time since Generation II, some twelve years earlier: Ghost- and Dark-type moves now have normal effectiveness against Steel-types and a new Fairy type has been introduced.
The Generation VI games are not isolated from previous iterations and can communicate with the fifth-generation games Black, White, Black 2, and White 2 through an online application known as Pokémon Bank. This feature, which is available for download from the Nintendo eShop, acts primarily as online storage for Pokémon species. It was first launched in Japan on December 25, 2013, although unexpectedly high demand forced it to close and relaunch the following January. International markets received the Pokémon Bank in February 2014. An extension of the Pokémon Bank called the Poké Transporter allows players to send Pokémon from their fifth-generation games to their X and Y cartridges via the cloud. Combining the Poké Transporter with the earlier Pal Park (from Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, HeartGold, and SoulSilver) and Poké Transfer (from Pokémon Black, White, Black 2, and White 2) allows players to transfer Pokémon from Pokémon Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald, FireRed, and LeafGreen to their sixth-generation games.