As I remember, in the original series, there were three Ghost Pokémons which were able to disappear, immune to attacks and so on. To beat someone, Ash needed to catch one of those and he somehow succeeded in the end.

What happened after that? Either I missed few episodes or my memories are really bad. Wouldn't that made Ash invincible? Yet, I never saw him using Ghost Pokémons again, not even in Pokémon League (and, he lost).

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    i haven't watched the show, but ghost type are just unaffected by normal attacks AFAIK, therefore any non normal attack still effects them. – Himarm Jan 27 '15 at 23:27
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    @Himram Define normal and non normal attacks.. – Umbrella Corporation Jan 27 '15 at 23:32
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    @SachinShekhar: Normal is a type in Pokemon, just like Fire, Fighting, or Ghost. – Shamshiel Jan 28 '15 at 0:13
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    bulbapedia.bulbagarden.net/wiki/Sabrina%27s_Haunter - Trivia : Haunter is the only Ghost type that Ash has used. – Valorum Jan 28 '15 at 0:17
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    @SachinShekhar: I have no idea what game you're referring to. There were no Pokémon games for the NES, and Pokémon is not a platformer. – jwodder Jan 28 '15 at 0:27

You are referring to the plot arc from EP022, "Abra and the Psychic Showdown" through EP024, "Haunter versus Kadabra". In order to defeat Sabrina, Ash has to use a Ghost-type Pokémon, as Ghost-type moves are (technically, at the time, were not) super-effective against Sabrina's Psychic-type Pokémon. Note that Ghost-types are only immune to Normal-type attacks, and they're definitely not immune to Psychic attacks. (In fact, the only Ghost Pokémon in existence when the episode aired were all weak to Psychic attacks, as they were part Poison-type!)

Anyway, back to the plot. Ash befriends (but does not capture!) a Haunter in EP023, and when he challenges Sabrina with it, the Haunter proceeds to pull pranks and make Sabrina laugh, breaking her emotionless façade and allowing Misty & Brock (whom Sabrina turned into dolls) to return to human form. As thanks (and because Ash is some sort of dumb-luck Mary Sue), Ash is awarded Sabrina's Marsh Badge, and the Haunter stays behind with Sabrina, whom it has befriended.

So the Haunter belongs to Sabrina now, not Ash, and it wouldn't have been invincible anyway.

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  • You're only partially right about the games. Remember, both attacks and Pokemon have types. In the original games, only Ghost and Bug attacks were strong against Psychic, and all the Bug-type attacks were very weak, meaning Ghost-type attacks were the most effective against Psychic-type Pokemon. – Izkata Jan 28 '15 at 3:15
  • @Izkata: Did you follow the link beginning with "technically"? Ghost moves had no effect on Psychic-type Pokémon in Generation I (Red, Green, Blue, and Yellow) — and even if they did have an effect, the only damage-dealing Ghost-type move back then that did not deal a set amount of damage was Lick, which was only learned by the Gastly line and Jynx. – jwodder Jan 28 '15 at 3:36
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    Odd, because I'm pretty sure I used a Ghastly in the US Red game... – Izkata Jan 28 '15 at 3:54

According to the Bulbapedia, in episode 23 Ash persuaded (note, didn't catch) a Haunter to come with him to fight against the Saffron Gym trainer, Sabrina.

In episode 24, although he technically loses the bout to Sabrina due to her superior playing style and the fact that his Haunter effectively refuses to fight, his pokemon's antics cause her to laugh, disabling her psychically-linked Abra and gifting him a technical victory. Her father awards Ash the Saffron Gym badge.

At the end of the episode, he leaves his Haunter (his sole ghost pokémon) with Sabrina at the gym.

You can watch the full episode here if you want more confirmation

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