Well, I finally beat Pokémon Sun today. Yes, I know, I keep taking forever with these, but I kinda have a reason for that this time, and I’ll get to that at the end. For now, let’s go over my Hall Of Fame team upon beating the game the first time, starting with, of course, my starter.
Yeah, you’re probably gonna notice one or two similarities to my X team, and one is that I chose the Grass-type Starter Pokémon. Doctor Hoot was Level 56 upon first completion of the game, carrying no items, and having the moves Leaf Blade, Spirit Shackle, Sucker Punch, and Acrobatics (hence the lack of items). He has a Relaxed nature, and characteristic is that he…likes to relax. lol While he didn’t use them in the League, he frequently used the Z-Moves Bloom Doom, Breakneck Blitz, Never-Ending Nightmare, and Sinister Arrow Raid. The Arrow Quill Pokémon was instrumental to my victories over the Kahunas Hala, Olivia, Hapu, and the Totem Pokémon Wishiwashi, as well as being the first Pokémon out for the championship match.
Not necessarily a Pokémon I was expecting to use on my team going in, but one I’m glad I decided on. Lycanroc was Level 54 upon initial completion of the game, carrying the Rockium Z, and knowing the moves Stone Edge, Crunch, Brick Break, and Stealth Rock. She has a Rash nature, and her characteristic is that she has good perseverance. Thanks to her Rockium Z, she can use the Z-Move Continental Crush on the really tough foes, though she’s also used All-Out Pummeling. The Wolf Pokémon mostly played support and backup in battles, but was a huge asset in battles against Guzma and Team Skull, once defeated a Lycanroc Midnight Form in one-on-one combat where both were at the same level, and was the one to score the final victory of the Alola League Championship match.
Yup, once again, went with Raichu for my team. But, this time, with the reveal of the Alolan Raichu, more than a bit different from my X team’s Raichu. Raichu was Level 56 when I first beat the game, carried the Aloraichium Z, and knew the moves Thunderbolt, Psychic, Brick Break, and Nasty Plot. He has a Brave nature, and his characteristic is that he loves to eat. Through the power of the Aloraichium Z, he can use Stoked Sparksurfer, though he’s also used Z-Moves such as All-Out Pummeling, Gigavolt Havoc, Breakneck Blitz, and Catastropika during his time as a Pichu and then a Pikachu. The Mouse Pokémon was a major player on my team for battles against the likes of Olivia, Team Skull, Kahili, Hau, and Hala.
And, once again, I had a Water-type Starter Pokémon from a previous game who could perform a new, powerful transformation. lol Greninja was Level 57 upon the first completion of the game, carried the Waterium Z, and had access to the moves Water Shuriken, Night Slash, Aerial Ace, and Extrasensory. He is Naughty by nature, and has the characteristic of being alert to sounds. The Waterium Z allows him to use the Z-Move Hydro Vortex, and he’s also used Black Hole Eclipse on multiple occasions. Furthermore, Greninja has the Ability known as Battle Bond, allowing him to transform into Ash-Greninja. The Ninja Pokémon was a late addition to my team, but was instrumental in defeating many powerful foes, such as Nanu, Hapu, Acerola, and Olivia.
Now HERE’S someone I knew I was going to add to my team from the first time I laid eyes on it. Mimikyu was Level 55 when I first became champion, was carrying the Fairium Z, and knew the moves Play Rough, Shadow Claw, X-Scissor, and Hone Claws. His nature is Sassy, and his characteristic is that he’s capable of taking hits…no doubt due to his Disguise Ability. lol Thanks to Fairium Z, he can use the Z-Move Twinkle Tackle, but has also used Never-Ending Nightmare in the past. The Disguise Pokémon’s unique typing made it one of my more useful team-mates, and he was a big help against all four members of the Elite Four and in the championship match.
Ah, the Pokémon who can only be female and runs its own reverse harem of male Salandit… … …I’m not even kidding. Look it up in the Sun version Pokédex. lol Salazzle was Level 53 when I first beat the game, carried the Firium Z, and knew the moves Flamethrower, Sludge Wave, Dragon Pulse, and Toxic, the last of which I made full use of due to her Corrosion Ability allowing her to inflict Poison status on ANY Pokémon, except those with Immunity. Her nature is Quirky, and her characteristic is that she has good perseverance. And, because she was carrying the Firium Z, she could use the Z-Move Inferno Overdrive, though I did occasionally have her use Acid Downpour. Despite being the lowest leveled Pokémon on my team most of the time, she was a big help against many foes thanks to her ability to poison almost any enemy, and was a major tide-turner against the Totem Pokémon Lurantis and in the final battle for the championship.
…So, let’s get to what I’ve been putting off saying for a while now. As I’ve alluded to a numbers of times, I’m a very old-school player of these games. My first Pokémon game was Pokémon Red, which I didn’t even own a Gameboy to play on, so I got a Super Gameboy to play it on my Super Nintendo. I had no one to trade or battle with, meaning I had to miss out on a big part of what made the game so special. When I finally got to enjoy that part later on, upon getting the Gameboy Color so I could play Pokémon Silver, I realized what an amazing game-changer this series was, and I’ve enjoyed damned near every step of my near two decade long journey…
… … …but this is my last stop. As I’ve revealed a while back on this blog, I’m currently on welfare and am unemployed. I can’t afford a new system, and it’s clear from playing this game that the Nintendo 3DS has been pushed to its fullest potential, meaning future Pokémon games in the main series won’t be released on it. If that changes someday down the road, and I am hoping it does pretty soon, great. But for now, I’m looking at this as my last journey, at least when it comes to the new games. And I have to say, while there are things I would change, and things I hope are added with the rumoured Pokémon Stars port for the Nintendo Switch, I really enjoyed Pokémon Sun. I don’t wanna spoil too much of the story, but I will say that a really gratifying part of it is watching the characters, one in particular, grow and change over the course of the game. And, you know, we’ve all grown and changed as we played along with these games, so it was a nice thing to see. And I hope that those who haven’t played through the game yet enjoy that aspect as well. If nothing else, though, I feel at least like, if this is the end of my journey, then at least it was here, in the game that celebrated 20 years of Pokémon. And so, with that said, I wanna take this time to thank one person in particular for changing my life, as well as the lives of many others: Satoshi Tajiri, creator of the initial concepts that led to the creation of Pokémon, and the current CEO of Game Freak. I don’t know how long you’ll continue to do this, but I hope it remains a hell of a ride, and I hope that you continue to inspire people and shape the world. In the end, Pokémon is all about friendships. It’s about people coming together and becoming something more by the experience, and I hope that never, ever changes.
… … … … … …Shut up, I’m not crying, YOU’RE crying. lol Anyway, feel free to leave your own memories of this and other Pokémon games, as well as your own Hall of Fame teams for Sun and Moon in the comments. Ja né, and train on.
Why The Pokémon Anime And I Are STILL Divorced (WARNING – ANGRY RANT AND SPOILERS AHEAD WITH NO PROOFREADING)
So, I was gonna say something about a lot of what I’m going to talk about here a while ago. However, because my proofreader, N. Harmonik, doesn’t like spoilers and refuses to watch subtitled episodes of shows that have an official English dub, I opted not to. But now, because of something else that’s come up that’s related to it, which I will also address, I’ve decided to just go ahead and get my thoughts out for everyone to hear, and just not have it be proofread. I suppose I could’ve found someone else to tag in for this one article, but I opted not to on the grounds that it might be kinda funny to just let this go through as is. So, enjoy reading my rant without a grammar and spelling filter, and feel free to point out all the ways I messed up later. ^_^
Anyway, you’ll recall that three years ago, almost to the DAY, I announced that I came to the realization that I hated the Pokémon anime and I was officially divorcing it. Now, here’s the thing: While I don’t actively watch it anymore, I AM aware of some of the stuff that happens on the show, and I DID watch a few of the new episodes, particularly the Kalos League Conference. In fact, I will go so far as to admit that I decided, if Ash had beaten Alain and won the Kalos League, regardless of what happened afterward, I would go back and rewatch everything I missed from when I stopped watching the show. I was very entertained by the Kalos League. And, as an aside, I really like the Japanese theme, XY&Z. I thought it was great… … …and then they fucked up. Which, let’s be honest, isn’t that just the story of this show for the past several years?
So, obviously, the big way they fucked up was that Ash lost in the finals. Now, my thinking of why Ash should’ve won was because, as far as I can tell, there are no more Gyms in Sun & Moon, so this was pretty much his last chance to win a League Conference. Also, this would be a great year to do it. It’s the 20th Anniversary of the original games, and the 19th Anniversary of the anime, meaning we could see a big change going into the 20th Anniversary of the show to shake things up. In addition, looking at what happened in hindsight, from a narrative perspective, it would make far more sense for Ash to win and then find himself facing off against Team Flare. But, to be frank, that’s not the reason a lot of people wanted to see him win. They wanted to see him win because they were tired of 19 years of Ash LOSING. And what happened? He lost again.
Now, with all of that said, when everyone else was reacting in sheer rage and anger, I have to admit to feeling a degree of desire to troll these people. Why? Because they were saying stuff like “The anime is officially dead” and “Gary was right all along, Ash really IS a loser”, and so on. And I began to laugh my fat ass off, because these people are only JUST NOW reaching the same conclusions I did three years ago. The anime has been dead for a LONG time now, people. It only continues to exist as a means to advertise the games, and even then, it does a piss-poor job of it a lot of the time. And frankly, people are pissed about this loss, but I gotta level with you all: This is NOT the worst thing the anime has ever done. It FEELS like it because of the timing and just how long this has gone on, but it’s not. Alain beating Ash? I don’t agree with it, but they were close enough matched that I could see it happening, and I do actually care a smidgen about Alain as a character. Now, compare to Tobias, who had no real story or personality to speak of and existed specifically for the sole purpose of making sure Ash lost. In fact, not only did Tobias beat Ash, he then went on to defeat his last opponent in the finals with even less difficulty, meaning Ash surely would’ve won the Sinnoh League Conference had Tobias never shown up. So no, comparatively, Ash losing to Alain in a REALLY close, hard-fought match that pushed both to give their best is not even close to being as bad as what happened with Tobias. Also, as a side note, when it comes to the whole Gary thing, if Ash really IS a loser, Ash actually surpassed Gary YEARS ago, so what does that make him?
So, I guess what I’m saying is that the Kalos League Conference didn’t piss me off so much as it left me disappointed, because it was good and it could’ve been great. And I will admit that everything that happened with Team Flare afterward was pretty dire and gripping, even if you knew going in that Team Flare was going to lose. That said, it comes off as kind of dumb that Lysandre can take on both of the Kalos League finalists 2-on-1. It’s like, why didn’t HE enter the tournament in that case? But no, I wasn’t pissed off by that… … …No, I was pissed off by what happened today in the anime.
Before I get into that, though, I wanna explain my idea of what they could’ve done for Sun & Moon. My idea was, to shake up the status quo a bit, to have Pikachu get sick before Ash is about to go to Alola. It’s not life threatening or anything like that, and he will recover, but Ash will need to postpone his trip if he wants to stay with his buddy while he recovers. However, Pikachu insists that Ash go and that he’ll catch up to him as soon as he can, and until then, Greninja is volunteering to go with Ash to Alola. So Ash goes, and then, after a few Trials, he manages to obtain a Z-Ring with the Electrium Z inserted. Then Pikachu recovers, rejoins the team, and has his brand new Z-Move to boot.
Now, spoilers for anyone who hasn’t seen today’s episode, that is most definitely not going to happen. Why? Because Greninja, who I consider to be the best Water-type Pokémon that Ash has ever had on his team, who possesses one of the best win-loss records of any Pokémon Ash has ever had, who has a special transformation technique exclusive to itself that makes the bond between it and Ash into a whole new kind of power, and who will likely go down in history as one of the all-time best main character Pokémon of the entire anime, was RELEASED. And what’s astounding to me is that this is a move where the writers should’ve known going in that this was going to piss people off, because they’ve done it before and it’s almost ALWAYS resulted in a negative reaction from the fans, but they did it anyway because they’re FOOLS.
So, let’s get some arguments for this decision out of the way, because I know some people are gonna debate this. First off, Ash is not getting Greninja back, and if he is, it’ll only be a short-term thing. Name a single time he’s ever released (not put in training, not sent to Professor Oak’s, but RELEASED) a Pokémon that he then got back full-time. The answer is ZERO. Speaking of, I probably SHOULD be pissed that Goodra went back to the wetlands, but I knew going into the Kalos League Conference that Goodra was only back short-term, so it doesn’t really bother me as much. It’s still dumb, but whatever. Secondly, I know the reason he left was to protect Kalos. It’s still stupid. How come? Because its best technique in combat was its ability to become Ash-Greninja, and it CANNOT DO THAT ALONE. And third, with Ash going to Alola with just Pikachu, simply leaving Greninja at Professor Oak’s would make zero sense, so they had to come up with a reason why Greninja physically could not come. I reply to such argument as follows: Not only is it still a stupid reason because of stuff I just said, but it’s also inserted for the SPECIFIC INTENTION OF MAKING ASH WEAKER, when all we’ve wanted for 19 years was for Ash to finally WIN!
And now I gotta address where we’re going with the anime: Sun & Moon. A DRASTIC change to the anime style. Not a BAD one, I wanna make that clear, but a pretty drastic one. No more Gyms as far as I can tell, meaning no League to challenge, meaning this will make for a very different season. Ash going to SCHOOL, of all things. And, one positive I can give, Ash getting a Z-Ring. Honestly, I like that, since it was odd to me that Ash missed out on gaining a Mega Ring, especially he had a few different Pokémon who could Mega Evolve, one of which had JUST RETURNED TO HIS TEAM PREVIOUSLY.
Now, there are people bashing on the premise and the art style and just how different the Sun & Moon arc looks. I wanna make something clear: None of those things bothers me all that much. A new art style? Hey, it helps give this season its own identity and furthers to distinguish it from the past few seasons. Same thing with the new premise. Hell, I don’t even mind the school setting all that much. Sure, it seems like an odd thing to go with for the long-term when we’ve already seen the main characters going to schools as part of short-term story arcs, but it could world. Think of the potential world-building this could do by focusing on that. None of that bothers me. What bothers me, and what ultimately breaks this deal with me, is that the main protagonist is STILL ASH FUCKING KETCHUM! And what’s worse, not only is he now going back to school after 19 years of losing, but now, with the new art style, he actually looks YOUNGER. So now, all these factors I just praised as being a help to this series now instead hinder it, all because of Ash’s presence as the main character. For fuck’s sake, writers, you didn’t even have to outright get rid of him, either! You could’ve instead have him brought on as a teacher (or teacher’s aide), and have him bestow some wisdom on young Trainers getting started with their new lives. You could’ve had him reflect on his life and his decisions throughout the anime while teaching these kids. You could’ve even justified his continued losses by having him explain that, even after losing the League Conferences over and over, it still helped to hone him as a person and a Trainer, and have him even realize that he’s now exactly the type of person these kids can relate to. Give us some Goddamn character development! You realize that Ash is still basically the exact same little twit he’s been for YEARS now?!
It’s at this point I have to address the simple truth of the matter: This show only exists because it has the Pokémon name attached to it. If this was any other property, I guarantee this show would not last 19 years. It’s just not possible. And to everyone just now getting pissed off, I say this to you all: You are several years late to the party, but you are welcome nonetheless, because something has got to be done about this show. At this point, there is only one way to salvage Ash as a character, and that is to reboot him back to square one. Everything we’ve seen of him up until this point? Never happened. He’s a brand new character and doesn’t have any of the baggage of his previous journeys. This way, you can build him back up to where he can eventually achieve what he originally set out to do: To be the best like no one ever was. But unless enough people actually start voicing this opinions and explaining how and why the show needs to improve, nothing is ever going to change. Ash will continue to be the main protagonist, and will continue to be a Goddamn loser.
And you wanna know what the saddest part of all of this is? When Ash lost the Kalos League, I asked myself “Why do I still care? Why am I STILL ranting about this fucking show? Why am I not just 100% apathetic towards it?” Well, the answer is simple: Because I want to watch a GOOD Pokémon show. I see what this show has done in the past, is doing in the present, and could do in the future, and I see how much potential it has. This show could be so much better and still work as an ad for the games with even the SLIGHTEST bit of effort. But that’s not what we get. For years, it is consistently not what we get. When this show started, it had something the games at the time were lacking: Real story. Characters we care a lot about. Back then, the games didn’t really have the best stories. Now, however, we’ve clearly hit the switch. The games now have better story and writing, whereas the anime, for all intents and purposes, is still in the same position it’s been in for years. And no matter what you have to say about that position, my opinion remains that it could be better, and it honestly feels somedays like the writers of this show have gone out of their way to ensure it doesn’t.
Anyway, that’s my thoughts on the product as of now. What do you all think of this, though? Lemme know in the comments below, and hey, remember that the main anime is not the only Pokémon related story out there. You don’t HAVE to watch it. In fact, I think if everyone stopped watching it, watched the specials like Origins and Generations, played the games more, read the manga more, etc., it might even help move things along. Ja né!
So, I know it’s been a while since the last real article I’ve written. Naturally, first time I actually sit down and do so, it’s Pokémon related. Thanks to a gift card I got last year for Christmas, I have ensured that I will be able to get Pokémon Sun. So thankfully, not getting left outta this one, which means I can allow myself to get as hyped as everybody else. Also, it means I can start racking up the questions about the game and what to expect from it. So, with that said, let’s take a look at a few things I can’t wait to learn about Pokémon Sun & Moon, starting with…
I figured I’d start with this one, because it feels like I already know the answer. And in case you’re wondering, right now in my head, I’m thinking the answer is yes, all the Alola Form Pokémon are Generation I Pokémon. Here’s what makes me think that: It’s the 20th Anniversary of the original games. Said original games have been re-released on Virtual Console, and the Pokémon from those games can even be transferred all the way up to Sun & Moon. I feel like this was done to give them something new. And frankly, I can’t help but notice at least five Kanto Pokémon are now getting the Dark-type, and I’ve always kinda wondered why it didn’t happen back in Gold & Silver. That said, there are plenty of other Pokémon from other regions that could’ve potentially gotten regional variants, and I hope that the concept isn’t tossed out when it comes to future games. This is actually a really neat idea, one I’m surprised hasn’t come up until now (not including the Orange Islands from the anime), and one that can be revisited later on. I also can’t help but notice that all of the Pokémon announced to have Alola Forms do not have Mega Evolutions, nor do I think they’re going to. Which leads me into the next question…
The Mega Evolutions were a bit conspicuous by their absence from the trailers for a while. Then, just recently, we’re told about how the new Z-Ring allows us to Mega Evolve Pokémon again. However, there were no new ones shown, only the ones revealed in Generation VI. This has led to the theory that there will not be any new Mega Evolutions in Sun & Moon. I’m personally inclined to believe it, though I’m a bit disappointed in that if it’s true. I felt like there were still at least another handful of classic Pokémon, and maybe even some newer ones, who would’ve benefited from being able to Mega Evolve, and even some who honestly felt like they SHOULD have gotten them but didn’t. So I’m hopeful that I’m either wrong or that Mega Evolution is expanded upon in later games. But speaking of carry-overs from Generation VI, that brings me to…
While Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire’s main game kinda left me feeling a little disappointed, I LOVE the idea of a post-game episode. As for what they could do for one in Sun & Moon, I say use Zygarde. We’ve already confirmed that one thing you can do in the game is collect Zygarde Cells, and that the different forms shown off in the anime will be in the game. Also, there was no third version of X & Y, the rumoured Pokémon Z. So I say just go all out and have a special post-game episode for Zygarde. The Z Episode, if you will. Maybe even have it follow up on plot points from X & Y? And hey, we know Ash-Greninja is in the game via the demo, so involve it too. Oh, and just as a real quick side-question, are we getting any other Pokémon with Battle Bond, or is it just gonna be Greninja? ‘Cuz I thought what they were gonna do is have all the fully evolved Kalos Starters be able to do it, and have them appear in Pokémon Z. But then, Pokémon Z never happened. But, like I said, if they do a Z Episode, they could follow up more on the Kalos Pokémon by doing just that.
Okay, strap yourselves in, folks, because I’m about to go all Game Theory on y’all for the next few ones. So, we’ve come to learn about new creatures called Ultra Beasts, who seemingly are neither Pokémon nor humans, meaning they’re some kind of third race. And yet, not only do the Ultra Beasts have at least some characteristics to them that we could potentially see them as being Pokémon, they also have some characteristic in common with humans. A body builder, a beauty, a little girl. Then I remembered a book in the Canalave Library which spoke of a time when humans and Pokémon ate at the same table, with some translations apparently suggesting humans and Pokémon had interspecies marriages at one point. And yes, as an internet personality, I am DEEPLY horrified by the fact that this makes a lot of the Rule 34 fics about Pokémon and their Trainers debatable canon. XP Regardless, though, this could hint at a potential link between the two species. So, if that’s the case, what’s to stop someone from taking the DNA of humans and Pokémon, putting them in a test tube, and seeing what comes out? Is it possible that the Ultra Beasts are the offspring of humans and Pokémon? COULD. IT. BE??? Well, all things considered, I can think of one other thing that suggests that…
Let’s unpack this one, shall we? How many times have we encountered scientists that went down the wrong road in these games, not necessarily for evil but for misguided reasons? And isn’t there a Synthetic Pokémon in the new games that was created with the intent to be as strong as the Mythical Pokémon, and evolves to gain an Ability akin to Arceus, accepted by many to be the Pokémon World’s GOD? And isn’t it odd how the only person confirmed at this time to have a Type: Null is Gladion, the Team Skull enforcer, who is in a directly antagonistic relationship with the Aether Foundation? And isn’t it interesting how he and the President of the Aether Foundation, Lusamine, have the same coloured hair and eyes? And isn’t it a nice little turn of events where the Aether Foundation is allegedly conducting research on the Ultra Beasts, who look like they may or may not have been created in a lab? All of this is painting a very dark picture of the Aether Foundation. Not saying Lusamine or any of the current members are evil, just that the organization they all work for might have a dark past they don’t want everyone to know about, and may very well be even trying to make up for. And frankly, I hope I’m right, because that would be a SWEET twist, and we haven’t had a REALLY good plot twist in the games for a little while now.
So GameXplain, the reason I don’t do Evaluating Time anymore because…well, really, what’s the point when they do a MUCH better job in my opinion, recently asked a simple question: How many Trial Captains and Kahunas would there be? And frankly, I’m kinda hoping it’s their answer of 14 Trial Captains and 4 Kahunas. Why? Because then each one can specialize in each type of Pokémon and none get left out. You all remember how many times I complained about there being no Dark-type Gym in any of the past games, after all. The only thing that complicates that is that I have no idea how you divide 14 captains among 4 islands, but whatever.
Anyway, let’s hope we don’t have to wait long for these answers. For now, lemme know what you are dying to know about the games in the comments below, and we’ll see what happens next month when the game comes out. Ja né!