Today I would like to talk to you about crabs: specifically, Crabrawler and the delightfully named Crabominable (seriously, can we just take a minute to appreciate the wonderful tumbling rhythm of that name?). In the process of writing this piece, I have learned (because learning obscure and not particularly useful zoological trivia is just part of what I do here) that evolution just really likes crabs for some reason, and consequently keeps trying to turn other random animals into crabs with mixed results, a process known as carcinisation. Crabs have apparently evolved at least five separate times, from a variety of starting points (giving rise, surprisingly, to only two Pokémon before now: Kingler and Crustle, Crawdaunt being a lobster). On the basis of this vague half-substantiated piece of pseudo-knowledge, I have decided that crabs are the ultimate form of life, to which all other species aspire. Of course, Crabrawler and Crabominable have the advantage of already being there – so let’s see what the apex of all biological life has to offer the Alola region. Continue reading “Crabrawler and Crabominable”
I think everyone has a dinosaur phase, right? Mine was… longer and more educationally rigorous than most, put it that way (my parents claim to this day that my first words as a baby were not the traditional ‘mama’ and ‘papa’ but the often tongue-twisting names of dinosaur species). There actually aren’t all that many Pokémon who seem to be based primarily on dinosaurs, funnily enough, although several of the big superstar ones are represented: we have ceratopids (Shieldon and Bastiodon), pachycephalosaurs (Cranidos and Rampardos), sauropods (Bayleef and Meganium, Tropius), and of course the famous birdlike theropod Archaeopteryx (Archen and Archeops). There are also a bunch of Pokémon that are probably influenced by dinosaurs, like Tyranitar, who seems to be a tyrannosaur via Godzilla, Charmeleon, who has shades of a small theropod, Torterra, who owes as much to ankylosaurs as to tortoises, and Bulbasaur, who… well, to be honest I don’t think even Game Freak really know exactly what Bulbasaur is but the –saur suffix definitely strikes a particular note. X and Y give us two more fossils: the brutal tyrannosaurs Tyrunt and Tyrantrum, and these two loveable goofs. I probably wouldn’t have chosen another sauropod, myself – I kind of want to see a hadrosaur – but I’m not about to complain about more dinosaurs, so here we go.Continue reading “Amaura and Aurorus”
All right! One hundred and fifty-five down, one to go! I can do this! Yeah! Go me! I’m awesome! Now, let’s wrap this up, with Unova’s last remaining legendary Pokémon: the glacial Dragon-type Kyurem!
Kyurem is a mysterious and powerful Dragon Pokémon who lives hidden in a crater known as the Giant Chasm, near Lacunosa Town in north-eastern Unova. The people of Lacunosa Town don’t know what lives in the Chasm, but they regard it as a place of ill omen and are afraid to go near it. The town is surrounded by a wall to keep out whatever lives there, and the people of the town normally stay inside their homes at night, since old legends warn of a monster that fell from the sky long ago and takes away people and Pokémon at night to eat them. Their fear is understandable; Kyurem’s hard, almost skeletal visage is not a welcoming sight. As far as I can make out, though, he just wants to lurk in his dark cave at the back of his meteor crater and be left alone. The information we have on Kyurem from the Pokédex seems to suggest that he’s unwell – maybe sick, injured, or just plain old – and can’t control his own ice powers properly anymore. His own body has long since been frozen by his own chilling aura, leaving him a shadow of his former self. So, what was his former self like? The air is thick with speculation. Continue reading “Kyurem”
Ice is one of the more underrepresented elements in Pokémon: the original games had only five Ice-types (Articuno, Jynx, Dewgong, Lapras and Cloyster), single-typed Ice Pokémon didn’t exist until Snorunt, Glalie and Regice in Ruby and Sapphire, and even now, with more than six hundred Pokémon in the game, fewer than thirty of them are Ice-types. Black and White have made two valiant efforts already to expand the number of pure Ice-types but have failed to impress me, producing Beartic and Vanilluxe. Well, third time’s the charm, so they say, so let’s have a look at Cryogonal, the crystallising Pokémon. Continue reading “Cryogonal”
Today’s Pokémon is…
…look, Game Freak, I can’t do this. It’s food; you can’t make me review a food Pokémon. From here it’s a hop, skip and a jump to “oh my god, Soylent Green is PIKACHU; what have you done!?” Don’t you have another Pokémon I could look at today? Like, a better one?
…no, Klingklang does not count.
Fine. Have it your way.
Today’s Pokémon is Vanillite, the… the vanilla ice cream Pokémon. No, for the last time, I am not making this up. It’s not actually made of vanilla ice cream, of course, which would be too far even for Game Freak. You’d have kids slurping up their Pokémon left, right and centre chasing after sugar highs and before you knew it the poor things would be extinct in the wild and bred as a new form of livestock on special farms. In fact, other than being Ice-types, I’m not sure that any aspects of Vanillite, Vanillish and Vanilluxe’s behaviour or powers have anything to do with the ice cream thing. Their schtick is that they create snowstorms. Continue reading “Vanillite, Vanillish and Vanilluxe”
All right; time to put last entry’s… unpleasantness… behind me! Today I’m looking at a Pokémon based on one of Earth’s most awesome animals: the polar bear, the largest land carnivore of the modern world. Game Freak have rendered this powerful, dangerous creature as…
…a little teddy bear with a runny nose.
Heh. I can never resist an anticlimax. Truth be told, I think Cubchoo’s cute, and if we like polar bears for being the savagery of the Arctic personified, we love polar bear cubs for being cute as buttons. I don’t know whether I’d call him well-designed or not… “cute baby bear” is really easy and Pokémon’s done it before – see Teddiursa – so I guess the uniqueness of Cubchoo’s design is in the weird snot thing. I assume Cubchoo’s nose is constantly runny because it’s one of the classic symptoms of a cold, and he’s an Ice-type, which is… at once almost clever and a little contradictory because no Ice Pokémon would ever actually get sick from being in the cold. Continue reading “Cubchoo and Beartic”