Dino Holders are the devices used to summon dinosaurs and activate Move Cards, typically in the anime. Although only the D-Team calls their devices "Dino Holders", for convenience it is the generic name for all of these devices on this Wiki.
The Dino Holders were created by Reese to allow the D-Team to summon their dinosaurs. Each holds one of the Stones the D-Team found in episode 1, which is what allows them to summon and detect dinosaurs. Each D-Team member has a different way of holding the devices and slashing cards: Max holds his Dino Holder sideways and slashes down to summon Chomp, doing something different for each Move Card; Rex and Zoe hold their Dino Holders upright and slash sideways, Rex perfectly horizontally and Zoe downward before curving up, both also have varied Move-slashing poses.
They are long silver devices being a rectangular casing on the end of a short handle, designed to be held in the left hand, and feature a screen on both the front and back plus a small array of black buttons for each. The front screen shows the image of the dinosaur card currently summoned (which flashes red if they are low on energy) or the Move Card most recently used (or, in early episodes, the entire card); if a dinosaur is summoned pet-sized, a graphic of their face is shown as a standby image, which changes to the corresponding Element symbol when a dinosaur is being summoned. The screen on the back displays a map showing where a dinosaur card has been activated (the front screen has also shown this ability), and can also be used for video calls with other Dino Holders or the D-Lab. Cards are stored in the casing between the screens, are selected though buttons under the front screen, and slide up out of the slot on top. They are then slashed through the slot in the red circle on the front, which also features the symbol of the Stone it contains; the Stones can be removed by opening the red circle on the back.
Reese has upgraded their functionality twice during the series. The first time was in episode 16, letting them tell if a detected dinosaur had appeared before, done in response to the Dino Holders being ruined by a fire. The second time was in episode 27, now allowing the top section to open and display the contained cards in a fan-like arrangement, ejecting the desired card to be caught before being slashed. Max's Dino Holder malfunctioned and refused to work twice by getting wet or being dropped (as well as being the only Dino Holder to malfunction), but it soon fixed itself both times. It also once got completely busted when a rhino stepped on it, but Chomp broke it open so Max could use the Lightning Stone directly.
A new device called the Dino Bracer (Dino Holder v.2 in Japanese) was created by Rex's parents to supplant the original Dino Holders during Mesozoic Meltdown, being similarly powered by the Stones and additionally compatible for use with the (not yet invented) Element Boosters, debuting in episode 50. While the Bracer is only meant to activate cards, the separate Dino Gadget is used to store the cards and is where the Element Booster is attached when not in use. Jonathan initially mentions that the Dino Gadget will "make the Dino Blaster even more powerful", but such a device is never mentioned again and was likely a mistaken line intended to refer to the Dino Bracer. This time, Max and Rex use nearly identical card-slashing poses of holding their arms out and slashing out and around, while Zoe holds her arm above her and slashes straight up, all three also using a single Move-slashing pose similar to their dinosaur-slashing poses.
The Dino Bracer and Dino Gadget are orange and black devices with some red parts. The Dino Bracer is strapped to the user's left wrist and features a screen with buttons and the D-Team logo, and a slot for slashing cards along the right side; the screen section slides forward to reveal a track that Element Boosters can be slid onto to activate. The screen features an array of apps when in standby, changing to the Element symbol when a dinosaur is summoned; when using Element Boosters, the screen changes to the D-Team logo with colored lines, shifting to the dinosaur's armored form when the Booster is attached. The screen also carries the same map and video call features as the Dino Holder, though it is never shown displaying a dinosaur or Move card's image. The Stone is stored inside the Bracer's base, though it's never directly shown how it is accessed. The Dino Gadget is strapped onto the user's belt over their right hip and is little more than a rectangular carrying case; there is a small bar with buttons that serves as a mount for the Element Booster. The top can open up to reveal a deck of cards, ejecting either a dinosaur card or an array of Move Cards in a ring spinning around the wearer (likely merely a visual effect for the audience), allowing them to be caught and slashed.
The DinoShot is the DS game's equivalent of the Dino Holder; it is the top menu option and is used to store, view, and manipulate all things regarding the player's Dinosaur and Move Cards outside of a D-Site, such as reordering Dinosaurs and assigning Moves. It resembles a blunt-ended gun with a circular design on the side resembling the Rock-Paper-Scissors emblem; this side-view is used as the main battle screen interface on the lower DS screen. Cards are stored vertically under the top plate, which flips up, and slashed front-to-back across the top of the device, shooting out an energy beam to summon the dinosaur; a small camcorder panel flips out from the side above the handle for an unknown purpose. They also have communication functions, like a Dino Holder, letting the player talk to the D-Lab and teleport back to the current continent's D-Site from the field.
Reese initially creates three blank white DinoShots for the D-Team, but one (which turns purple) is stolen by the Alpha Gang in the game's intro sequence, the others being used by Max and Rex and turning red and blue, respectively (the player plays as one of them throughout the game, the other merely following around for story purposes and dialogue). While initially designed to run off of the Stone Fragment piece discovered by Zoe, which Dr. Z's stolen DinoShot contains, the other two are given power by two complete (sentient) Stones discovered earlier to help the boys save the dinosaurs and the world. Dr. Z later creates multiple Alpha DinoShot copies and gives them to his lackeys to use in their plans and against the player, each containing a new Stone Fragment as they are discovered across the world.
At the story's climax, after defeating Dr. Z and the spirits of the dinosaurs stopping the Reaper's Wrath meteor, the Stones (which contain the dinosaur spirits) leave the DinoShots as they feel they are no longer needed, the devices powering down. At the start of the post-game, however, when the Alpha Gang becomes troublesome again, the two Stones return and re-power the boys' DinoShots; the player has no character control during the period of the DinoShots not working.
Alpha Scanners were invented by the Alpha Gang and were the first known dinosaur-summoning device. They are powered by the Stones the Alpha Gang possesses, and in many ways work much like the D-Team's Dino Holders. Each member of the Alpha Gang has their own one or more preferred methods of slashing cards that cycle in and out (often the same for both dinosaurs and Moves), though all slash them down across the Scanner except Seth, who holds the card in place and slashes the Scanner down onto it.
They are indigo devices vaguely resembling a large Game Boy Advanced with a screen surrounded by yellow buttons on the sides and a line of red buttons below. The back features the Alpha Gang logo and there are two small yellow spikes on top that act as antennae to detect activated dinosaur cards. The screen shows activated card locations, summoned dinosaur Element symbols, activated card images, and video calls just like Dino Holders. Cards are kept inside and selected with the screen's buttons, sliding up out of the slot on top; then are then slashed down through a slot to the right of the screen that runs the full height of the Scanner. No visible feature distinguishes which Stone is kept inside any given Scanner, but they are accessed by opening a panel at the bottom.
Their design was only modified once, for Mesozoic Meltdown, to add a dropdown tray to plug Element Boosters into to activate them.
When breaking ranks from the Alpha Gang, Seth used the Dino Holders as a template to create his own, dark-colored copy holding an unspecified copied Stone (probably Fire, given the decoration) inside it with 20 times the power of the originals. Though he has to be using something to summon Saurophaganax in Full Scheme Ahead, what he is holding in his hand is through expert camera angles never revealed, the Holder itself not debuting until the next episode. It is not shown using the map or call features of the original Dino Holder, nor showing triggered card images, though may have still had them. When using this device, Seth adopts the standard motion of slashing cards down across it, though sometimes holding it in his right hand instead of his left like others do.
He is still using it in Mesozoic Meltdown for Cryolophosaurus; it is unknown what is powering the Holder at this point, though it is likely another copied Stone. Seth also used this Dino Holder to remotely activate a Gel Jark from within the Backlander.
Spectral Space Pirates
The Spectral Space Pirates use unnamed devices with no visible power source to summon dinosaurs and activate Move Cards; though unspecified, Seth may have created them using stored data he'd previously copied from the Stone Tablets. They do not appear to react to other dinosaur cards activating. They are the only devices shown compatible with using Spectral Armor dinosaur cards, and these are the only kind they are seen using. While Gabbro normally only uses one set of motions to summon and activate cards, simply holding up the card in his right hand and pressing or setting it onto the device, Foolscap and Shear have several recurring standards with Shear also having several unique one-off motions; Spectre doesn't use his often enough to have a "go to" stock animation method.
These devices are a silver hexagon (purple in arcade cutscene art) of various sizes worn as accessories differently by each Space Pirate: Gabbro's is large and strapped onto his chest; Foolscap's is small and mounted on his headband/bandanna; Shear's is small and attached to her choker; Spectre's is large and on a golden plate attached between his shoulder plates, but is still seen on his suit's chest when not wearing his shoulder plates, and also features the Space Pirates' logo instead of being blank silver; and Goma's is the same as Spectre's.
When a purple Spectral Armor dinosaur card is placed onto the device's surface, it fades to grayscale and the Space Pirate emblem appears via hexagonal grid and pops off, summoning the dinosaur; placing the grayscale card on the surface again will release a pink projection of the Space Pirate logo and the card will disappear in a hexagonal grid, triggering a pink hexagonal grid to spread out from the device and applying Spectral Armor to the dinosaur; placing a Move Card will make the device glow pink and the card darken and dissolve to be triggered. Altered dinosaurs with Spectral Armor-only forms have their cards disappear like grayscale cards before the device forms the Space Pirate emblem; Brontikens' card disappears like a grayscale, but the projected emblem flashes instead; by sliding the card across his device, Spectre can summon Brontikens pet-sized.