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In the Tood: Miscellaneous thoughts about Pokemon

Tood

barnacles
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Apparently, my last post on this forum before today was a post on some thread in 2015. Well, I'm back for now, I guess. Time to make a blog again.

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I tend to space out a lot and laugh at my own thoughts and daydreams. Everyone I know thinks it's weird, but I think it's a cheap way of entertaining myself without spending any of my tuition money on actual things like games or movies. I figured it would be worth a shot to just let out some of these things and see what other people think about them, or if they have some other weird ideas they'd like to share.

Alternatively, I just post opinions about some things. Whatever is on my mind, I don't care.

A good chunk of these thoughts are Pokémon-related, hence why I'm posting them here. I really don't think they warrant the creation of actual threads in any way, so I'll put them in this post. I'm certain the length of each thing will be different too, so anyone that happens to be reading should not expect consistency or top tier writing. Don't expect things to make sense either, I tend to be redundant and non-concise at times.

Anyway,
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01. AU where all the pokemon aren't real and they're just people in really bad cosplay fighting each other

Like imagine Red, and he's in Pallet Town picking his starter and Professor Oak leads him to a table with a cabbage, a lighter and a water pistol. Nobody acknowledges that this is a cabbage, a lighter, and a water pistol, because they are obviously just the starters everyone knows and loves. So Red picks Bulbasaur and takes the cabbage with him, and Blue takes the lighter. The ensuing rival fight is just Blue in an orange jumpsuit trying to burn Red, who has a cabbage strapped to his back. Some random scientist or something cheers them on like "woo yeah you go charmander".

I'd think that the remaining adventure would go on similarly, with gymleader battles being something like

-Brock with a chain of rocks dragging behind him that he tries to hit people with, but he can't because it's too heavy to lift
-Misty but she's in a star costume and just spins around and around and yells "hyah" while trying to squirt Red with a water gun
-Lt. Surge dressed as a cute mouse with a car battery he tries to shock you with or something
-Erika just makes your allergies feel bad
-Sabrina, who is just regular Sabrina but she has 2 spoons and a mustache

etc.

Some other fights quickly off the top of my head:

-Bugsy dual wielding scythes
-Whitney doing continuous forward rolls while dressed as a cow
-Every fighting type specialist just punching the kids that challenge them

As if this is a thing that just regularly happens.

It's because the further I think about this, the crazier and/or stupider the fights get, which is why this stuff becomes amusing to me.

I need sleep
 
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Tood

barnacles
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I think that romhack is called Moemon? I've seen it and it looks pretty cute! I'm sure I've seen a Let's Play of it before somewhere.

02. Blacephalon

Alright, so I forgot this thing existed. It's probably because I got Ultra Moon instead of Ultra Sun, so I don't ever remember seeing it anywhere. It's probably my favorite of the Ultra Beasts, although that doesn't say much considering I'm not much of a fan of them in general.

Blacephalon's kind of neat because I'm biased in favor of ghost types and because it's a funky clown with a neat shiny. But what I find most amusing is that it attacks by blowing its head up. It's a really bizzare offensive strategy, and it's something that I find really unique about this thing, at least in comparison to other Pokemon.

Other exploding Pokemon are kind of round and would reasonably look like a bomb, like Voltorb, Koffing, or Geodude, and they would generally faint upon using Explosion or Self-Destruct in most of Pokemon canon. I think the fact that Blacephalon detonates only its head and restores it is kind of morbid. Like if it was any other Pokemon that did that, it'd just be gross. But it works really well with Blacephalon amd its design and I like it.

The exploding head stands out because it also reminds me of a story I wrote when I was about 5 years old about 3 birds. The birds were friends who lived in treehouses in the woods somewhere. There was Birdie, who was the standard everyday bird, and Tiny, who was a smaller bird. I have no idea what the third bird's name was, but 5-year old me thought it would be hilarious to have its head pop like a balloon. That was the running gag in my bird story. The other birds would pull out needles and pop the third bird's head, and a new head would emerge from the third bird's neck stub and re-inflate, like a balloon. The third bird could also attach a tire pump to itself and cause its head to shrink and curl up by letting air out, or cause its head to grow by putting more air in. It even blew itself up sometimes, too.

It's really kind of messed up when I think about it now, and I am eternally glad that Blacephalon did not get an organic animal-looking design, because it would just be disgusting.
 

lapisora

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Wow, that is kind of disturbing (your thing about the bird with the exploding head). I like Blacephalon a lot too.

Also, you're not the only one to space out and laugh at your own daydreams. I do that too! My parents think it's weird, but I do like to imagine situations such as "what if I was a trainer?" or "what if we all lived underwater?". Another thing I do is remember funny things my friends said or did, which makes me smile randomly all the time. This weird out my parents too.
 

Obstagoon

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I like the idea of Jasmine's cosplay just being a thousand magnets worn as various pieces of jewelry.

Clair's dragons are geckos she found and put in those hamster roly balls.
 

Tood

barnacles
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03. Underground

I know the Sinnoh Underground in-universe is supposed to be a fun place filled with excavations, secret bases, and games of capture the flag, but without anyone to play with, it just feels a bit desolate. It's just my player character in a massive tunnel system all alone with some randomly scattered hikers. Despite this, it's still probably my favorite side-minigame-thing in the series. I remember spending a very notable amount of time playing that stupid mining minigame when I was a kid. I also tried to fake being sick once, so I could stay home from school and steal borrow my brother's DS so I could get the flags for Spiritomb.

I recently played through Sinnoh again, and it's still super relaxing to me for some reason. A lot of things also make a bit less sense to me about the whole thing:

  • How do people in the Pokemon Universe even get down there, anyway? Do they just dig straight down whenever they want to do some digging? Does my player dig through the concrete in Veilstone City? Wouldn't that leave a bunch of randomly scattered pitfalls all around Sinnoh? Do people just have to constantly look at their feet to make sure they don't fall into random holes or something?
  • Maybe the reason you need to get 30-something flags in the Sinnoh Underground to get Spiritomb is because the spirits that make up its body are those of the kids who got stuck under boulder traps and couldn't get out. Seriously, the traps range from bubbles to massive chunks of rock being hurled at the heads of children, who in their right mind thought this would be a good idea?
  • Some old guy convinces the whole Sinnoh region to just completely dig out a massive, region-spanning tunnel system - for fun. I feel like the intent of this man is genuine, I really do. But it just seems like it could also easily have been some secret plan to get free labor to dig out a metro system or a smuggling route or something. A series of tunnels at that size feels like it initially had to have some ulterior motive behind it, because it's ridiculous. I have no idea what the actual in-game reasoning for its existence is.
  • Honestly, the Underground Man seems like he's in a really good position. He's well-liked across the region, he's got a massive maze under all of Sinnoh at his disposal that continues to grow, he has ties to two of the Sinnoh gym leaders, and he just has to stay at his house in Eterna City and give kids shovels. If he really wanted to be evil, he probably could have been able to get away with a bunch of stuff.
  • Spheres are weird. What makes them grow? Are they Pokemon food? Do you make jewelry from them? How much are they worth? They seem so common, yet hikers are giving me whole bookcases with books and TVs in exchange for them. Am I being scammed?
  • "The wall is bulging slightly" OwO
  • The icon for the explorer kit has a shovel, but the tools you actually use when mining are a hammer and a pickaxe. Is the shovel what you use to get down underground in the first place?
  • Giving ten year olds drills and letting them just run around unsupervised in a maze where they could easily get lost and crushed by traps seems a bit irresponsible, doesn't it?
The actual answer to any questions above is that this is a minigame in a video game, none of it matters and this is stuff my mind spews out when I take too much of my allergy medication. I am up at midnight on a work night writing a blog post about this like a lunatic.

When the remakes finally get here in 2050, they better keep all of this intact, or I will cry
 

prog rocker

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Maybe the reason you need to get 30-something flags in the Sinnoh Underground to get Spiritomb is because the spirits that make up its body are those of the kids who got stuck under boulder traps and couldn't get out. Seriously, the traps range from bubbles to massive chunks of rock being hurled at the heads of children, who in their right mind thought this would be a good idea?
Actually, you just need to talk to people underground (not NPCs) thirty-something times. As someone that only knew one person that had the games at the time, it was as tedious as you might think since it involved us getting outside and the inside the underground a lot just so that the other can be considered a "new person".
 

Tood

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Actually, you just need to talk to people underground (not NPCs) thirty-something times. As someone that only knew one person that had the games at the time, it was as tedious as you might think since it involved us getting outside and the inside the underground a lot just so that the other can be considered a "new person".
I haven't really played multiplayer in years, so I guess that's my fault for misremembering. It really was one of the more tedious things to do in the game. I think maybe the flags were for a trainer card star instead, then?
 

prog rocker

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I haven't really played multiplayer in years, so I guess that's my fault for misremembering. It really was one of the more tedious things to do in the game. I think maybe the flags were for a trainer card star instead, then?
I think so, and also for a decoration. I think I might check tomorrow, I'm feeling tired after a certain something that happened today.
 

NMLewis

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Yeah, it's possible to get rid of all the boulders in your Secret Base if you get to the top rank.
P. tedious to get to that when all you've got is your alternate selves to steal flags from... but I'll probably do that someday soon.

Also, I <3 the mining minigame! You can dig up Light Clay! And Elemental Plates!!
 

lapisora

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My headcanon is the spheres are eaten by Rock type Pokemon. That's why finding a large one is so rare
 

Tood

barnacles
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My headcanon is the spheres are eaten by Rock type Pokemon. That's why finding a large one is so rare
It's a good idea, especially since we're essentially planting spheres in the ground and letting them grow like crops would. I wonder if different spheres have different flavors? Like the red ones are spicy or something.
 

Tood

barnacles
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04. A quick ranking of character ensembles of each gen.

This is considerably not as strange as everything else, but I feel like posting it anyway, because I've been dwelling on it for too long lately.

Humans in Pokemon kind of get shafted in favor of the Pokemon. Fair enough. But some generations seem to have cared for the humans more than others. So I've been thinking about the humans in Pokemon and I have tried my best to rank each region's characters based on how much Game Freak actually seemed to care about them that gen.
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1. Unova
For obvious reasons.

-Team Plasma is generally considered the strongest evil team, with the major characters like N, Ghetsis, and Colress all being interesting in their own ways.
-All the gym leaders are solid, and are actually do something in the plot for once. They're all also close with each other, which is evident by not only the story but also those memory thingies you unlocked as you progressed through the game. The GLs and Elite 4 are also all seen outside their Gyms or the League, and this gen also gave almost all of them jobs and occupations aside from just being GL/E4, which is very appreciated.

I haven't played any gen 5 games in a while, so I don't have much to say other than I remember the characters were great.

2. Alola
I've seen lots of criticisms about SM/USUM, but a common thing I've heard is that the characters are actually not that bad.

-While not on levels of Unova plot relevance, the Trial Captains and Kahunas are also often seen in other places aside from trial locations, and are also well-acquainted with each other. It's evident in lots of places, like during Mallow's trial where Kiawe and Lana show up too. Many are also given families in neighboring towns, which is also a neat detail.
-Team Skull, Team Aether + Gladion are also good as well. The plot also seemed to focus heavily on the growth of characters like Lillie or Hau, who seemed to be a lot more involved in the story than rivals/allies of past games (much to the dismay of those who hate unskippable cutscenes).
-Also, Burnet showing up might show that Game Freak actually took the time to look back at even the most obscure side characters to consider bringing them into the game. Also Anabel side plot.
-I want to say something about Mohn and the bean island too, but I don't really know how to explain; they gave the bean guy a plot-relevant backstory. I'll get back to this later, maybe.
-Ultra recon squad got screwed in comparison to everyone else though.

3. Sinnoh
The cast is mostly good.

-Platinum added lots of content to help them out, such as additional story content and the Villa. The Villa was super useful in getting to learn more about the GLs in particular.
-I believe it's the first region where you see that many of the GLs are friends with each other and other characters, as evident by characters like Maylene and Candice or Volkner and Flint, among others.
-Cynthia
-The devs also began adding many more NPC family members for characters other than rivals or the player, like Cynthia's sister and grandparents in Celestic Town or Maylene's dad in the game corner. Many named characters are shown to be related to each other too.
-Some of the battle frontier characters actually get acknowledged in-game, unlike in Emerald. Palmer is Barry's father, Caitlin is Caitlin, and iirc Dahlia is mentioned by Fantina in the Villa.
-It's also the first region to have all 8 of its gym leaders appear outside their gyms (although not because of plot), so I also have to give it credit for that. Aside from the Villa, they all still do show up elsewhere in Sinnoh.
-Team Galactic is solid enough.
-They started giving some gym leaders actual in-game jobs, like maybe half half of them?
-There are still several characters who have nothing going for them: Aaron and Bertha don't really do much, in contrast to Flint or Lucian who appear outside the league at the very least. Cheryl and Mira also seem a bit lacking in comparison to the other 3 stat trainers. Riley, Buck and Marley have far more interesting reasons for teaming with the player, and also have some relations to other characters in the game that helps make them more notable.


4. Kanto
FRLG is where I think Game Freak started to somewhat care about the humans. Kanto characters also have the advantage of just being in the most games, so...

-FRLG had the fame checker, which I really liked because it essentially logged all the interesting facts you learned about major NPCs throughout the game.
-It also had HGSS to help it out. You could phone the characters and take pictures with them, and there were added interactions with some of the Johto leaders. LGPE added extra scenes of Brock and Misty outside their gyms as well.
-I think the Kanto characters are still lacking the feeling of closeness I get with the Unova, Alola, and Sinnoh casts. There are some characters like Koga/Janine or Oak/Agatha who are good, but there's others like Blaine/Mr. Fuji or Bill/Daisy who have a bit less of an impact on me because I've never actually see any of these characters directly speak about or interact with each other. All the information is from unrelated NPCs.
-Elite Four still gets screwed over pretty bad in terms of never leaving the league, ever. Lance does, but only in Johto, and I'm not sure how that'd fit in this whole ranking thing. (Edit: Forgot Lorelei shows up before Rock Tunnel in LGPE, not sure about the Sevii islands in FRLG)
-The fame checker does well enough that I think every character is covered in some way.
-Blue's a brat in Kanto games, but seeing him more mature in newer games is really nice.
-Team Rocket is just thugs, and Kanto Team Rocket only really has Giovanni as a notable character.

5. Hoenn
I think ORAS makes this rank here instead of lower.

-Wally is a good boy. I like how he grows in ORAS.
-Steven
-The Anabel plot in ORAS is cool, and it's nice to see acknowledgement of one of the Hoenn frontier brains for once. However, the other 6 might as well not exist anymore and that sucks. Turns out my memory is made of paper and it was SM. Congratulations Hoenn, another region is treating your frontier brains better than you.
-ORAS makes it so that you can talk to all the Gym Leaders outside their gyms after the post-game. It's a good decision, especially since the majority of them did nothing and had nothing said about them in the original RSE games, aside from Wallace (for plot) and Wattson (not for plot). I still think they're a bit lacking in comparison to the other regions' characters.
-Elite 4 is alright. I don't remember if any are seen outside the league, but at the very least, Phoebe is related to the couple on Mt. Pyre, and Glacia likes noodles.
-Team Aqua and Magma are alright. Not much to say about them.
-Brendan/May are pretty unremarkable as rivals.

6. Johto
It's hard because of the Kanto overlap.

-Gym leaders are fine, some appear outside gyms during the game, like Jasmine or Morty, others don't. As with the Kanto cast, HGSS ensured via the phone/photo mechanic that each GL did at some point. Except maybe Chuck, whose photo is completely missable after a certain point. It also added some nice interations, like Falkner and Janine arguing about their dads, or Erika and Jasmine talking about capes.
-Elite 4 still stuck in league hell, fated to never leave again. We know nothing about Will or Karen.
-The Kanto feeling is very strong, and Johto feels a bit dependent on it. Team rocket is team rocket. Professor Elm gets overshadowed by Oak. Characters like Lance or Bill are from Johto, but are more likely well-known from the Kanto games. I don't think HGSS really did much to give Johto its own identity. Everything is still too strongly linked to Kanto.
-A few GLs participate in the Pokeathlon, and that's cool. Jasmine also can participate in Sinnoh contests, too.
-The Silver/Giovanni thing was a nice addition to the plot in HGSS, although it was event-locked.

7. Kalos
Kalos suffers because it came after Unova and made it worse.

-GLs are either a strong hit or a strong miss. The better characters include Korrina who has relevance to the Mega mechanic, or Valerie who is from another region and is friends with several other leaders and an E4 member. Others, like Ramos or Olympia, are just kind of there.
-As this gen comes after gen 5, many of the gym leaders/elite 4/Diantha all get day jobs again, which are reflected well in the character designs.
-A TV program shares some fun facts about Gym Leaders.
-Elite 4 is also variable, but is overall not that bad. Wikstrom stands out because of his demeanor but has not much else of interest going for him, Malva is part of Team Flare and is a reporter, Siebold is a chef and friends with Grant and Valerie, and Drasna is from Sinnoh. It's definitely not the worst.
-Rivals are meh at best.
-Team Flare is alright, but those admins are the least memorable in the series history. The only one I remember is Xerosic, and the 4 girls are just unmemorable for almost anyone. In comparison to gen 5 and 7, XY really didn't try to do anything new at all with its evil team, and just reverted back to the earlier evil team formula.

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This was originally going to be a bullet point list, but instead I wasted 2 hours on rambling.

As a note, after Kanto, the list is interchangeable for me. I think Hoenn, Johto, and Kalos have different problems with their casts, and it's hard for me to rank them.

This isn't really my list of character preferences, either. I've just ranked the regions based on how much effort I think went into making the humans more interesting. My own personal ranking of each region's characters is probably very different than this. Like, Bugsy of all characters is my favorite human in Pokemon, so my actual standards are probably extremely low in terms of what makes characters likeable. I'd probably end up ranking Kalos and Sinnoh higher too.

I don't know how to feel about Masters, since it's the human-focused game I've been waiting for, but with (probable) microtransactions and gacha. Hopefully my favorites are low-tier and easy to get. Hoping for interactions between characters too.
 
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prog rocker

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-The Anabel plot in ORAS is cool, and it's nice to see acknowledgement of one of the Hoenn frontier brains for once. However, the other 6 might as well not exist anymore and that sucks.
Anabel was not in ORAS. I think you're talking about SM here.

Also, I have a theory about Will. His original GSC sprite reminds me of a male Lorelei, and his room is full of ice, and according to the Spaceworld demo, Lorelei was going to be one of the Elite Four, so what if Will's sprite is a redrawn Lorelei sprite?
 

Tood

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Anabel was not in ORAS. I think you're talking about SM here.

Also, I have a theory about Will. His original GSC sprite reminds me of a male Lorelei, and his room is full of ice, and according to the Spaceworld demo, Lorelei was going to be one of the Elite Four, so what if Will's sprite is a redrawn Lorelei sprite?
Ohh snap was it really SM? Makes sense with all the UBs running around. I guess that's what I get for not liking SM that much, but's another plus for Alola in terms of returning characters, I suppose. I'll fix it.

I didn't know about Lorelei being in the Spaceworld demo, that's pretty cool! I have seen some speculation before from people that Will and Lorelei are related because of how they looked alike. I think it makes sense that he's just a sprite edit. If I'm also remembering right, Will is also one of the few characters in GSC whose Pokemon's gender are all set to be opposite his own. Maybe it's a result of a Lorelei swap?
 

prog rocker

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I didn't know about Lorelei being in the Spaceworld demo, that's pretty cool! I have seen some speculation before from people that Will and Lorelei are related because of how they looked alike. I think it makes sense that he's just a sprite edit. If I'm also remembering right, Will is also one of the few characters in GSC whose Pokemon's gender are all set to be opposite his own. Maybe it's a result of a Lorelei swap?
Again, it's just a little theory I have. Sadly, the only thing about Lorelei in the demo was her name. Her sprite was replace by Kurt, who was apparently a Trainer in that version. Nothing else remains of her, though.

Also, I didn't know that Will's Pokémon were set to be female, that's curious.
 
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