Anonymous asks:

Do you believe it possible that part of the reason for assigning type to a Pokémon – and a potential answer to the enduring question of what a type is and how those so labelled fit under its umbrella – might lie in some energy form infusing those Pokémon? I think of Voltorb, obviously a pokéball that came to life, and the question becomes, what is it “possessing” or animating this pokéball? Something alive and powerful – is it possible then, that electricity itself is animating the ball? Not mundane electricity but the – forgive me – “essence” of electricity, one of many underlying let’s say “mystical” life energies that associate with natural phenomena in this world? A pokemon’s type, then, is the form of such energy that permeates it, that it channels of draws upon, and which connects its biology (or geology, etc.) to this empowered form of “life”, bestowing on it its abilities?

Well, I think that’s probably the kind of answer that Game Freak would give if you pressed them on it.  I just don’t like it very much because it feels like such a cop-out from a world-building perspective, unless you take it a lot further.  The answer to everything becomes “well, we have these different kinds of energy that work they way they do because they work the way they do.”  Like, if we ask “why is Drifblim a Flying-type and Flygon not a Flying-type?” the answer is then “because Drifblim is infused with the essence of flight (whatever that means) and Flygon isn’t,” which answers the question and shuts you up without actually saying anything – you can go on to ask “well, why is Drifblim infused with the essence of flight?” but at this point the question has been rephrased to something that seems like maybe it doesn’t need an answer.  And of course we still get dug into a hole with the poor Normal-types, who would appear to be distinguished mainly by not having any such connection to any mystical energy source, even though they can perform all kinds of nonsense just as spectacular – or more so – than any other Pokémon.

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