On the last day of March this year, I set out to pass judgement on all one hundred and fifty-six of the new Pokémon of Black and White. I have spent the intervening nine months whining constantly about the general incompetence of Game Freak’s designers and the total unworthiness of the name “Pokémon” of such creations as Unfezant, Emolga, and (shudder) Garbodor. So, here’s the big question: what’s the final score?
Out of one hundred and fifty-six Pokémon, I have:
And shaken my head in confusion and given up on one.
Wait, that can’t be right! I’ve let almost half of them live! I must have been far too nice! Let me see those…
I let them keep Liepard? What was I thinking? Continue reading “My Quest Concludes” →
Today I’m looking at the second of Black and White’s legendary trios, the ogre-like genies Tornadus, Thundurus and Landorus. Why do these games have so many legendary Pokémon, anyway? Every set of games always introduces more of the things than the last (compare five in Red and Blue to thirteen in Black and White), and at some point you have to wonder how many we actually need… but I should judge them all on their merits, shouldn’t I? So, without further ado: the legendary genies, Tornadus, Thundurus and Landorus.
As their astonishingly inventive names attest, Tornadus, Thundurus and Landorus are spirits of wind, lightning and earth; Landorus is a Ground/Flying dual-type, Thundurus an Electric/Flying dual-type, and Tornadus the only single-typed Flying Pokémon in the entire game. Tornadus and Thundurus are chaotic and sometimes destructive storm spirits who zip around frying people, blowing them away, playing tricks, ransacking things at random, and occasionally beating the hell out of each other and laying waste to a few neighbourhoods in the process. Landorus, in stark contrast, is a benevolent figure associated with protection and fertility, whose role is to keep the other two in line and to encourage crops to grow healthily. When Tornadus or Thundurus (or both) makes trouble for the villages of Unova, Landorus shows up to settle things. Continue reading “Tornadus, Thundurus and Landorus” →
I should probably begin this entry with a disclaimer: for various reasons, I don’t actually have a Zorua or a Zoroark. In theory I know everything about them I need to know to write the entry, but their powers are rather complicated, as I’ll explain later, and I’m not sure I can really do justice to their impacts on the flow of battle. Then again, I’ll probably just do exactly the same thing as I always do: stare at their numbers for a while, research what everyone else says about them on the internet and then make dozens of wildly unsubstantiated assertions laced with bizarre and confusing metaphors before declaring victory and passing out on the sofa.
What, you mean you didn’t know?
Anyway. Zorua and Zoroark are clever and elusive fox Pokémon, not actually malicious but fond of deception and mischief. Their main power is their ability to create flawless illusions; they normally use their powers to disguise themselves as other Pokémon, but they can also take human form or even create false images of landscapes. So far, this is giving me flashbacks to Ninetales – another highly intelligent fox Pokémon with magical abilities related to trickery – probably because she shares a common inspiration with Zorua and Zoroark: the kitsune fox spirits of Japanese legend. Continue reading “Zorua and Zoroark” →
…oh, Victini, what did you do to deserve this? I know there are people who like Victini; I know they exist. Those people would be best served by turning around, sticking their fingers in their ears and chanting “la la la, I can’t hear you” for the duration of this entry.
Let’s have some background. Victini is the latest in a long line of “cute” legendary Pokémon. The Psychic cat Pokémon Mew is the fabled ancestor of all Pokémon. Celebi is a forest spirit who exists beyond time. Jirachi is a celestial fairy Pokémon who is only awake for one week in every thousand years, but can supposedly grant any wish in that time. Manaphy, the so-called prince of the sea, possesses unmatched empathic abilities and can touch the heart of any living thing. Last but not least, Shaymin, the guardian of meadows, is the personification of gratitude and has the power to harmlessly absorb any poison. Victini, the newest addition to the group, is the embodiment of victory. Victini is said to be a source of boundless energy, which he can share with anyone who touches his body. As such, possessing Victini is supposedly an absolute guarantee of victory. I don’t just mean victory in battle either; Victini is victory itself and can bring success in any kind of situation with any possible outcome that might be considered ‘winning’. Continue reading “Victini” →