On Fossil Pokémon

Let’s talk about fossil Pokémon.

Official art of (left to right) Kabuto, Kabutops, Omastar, and Omanyte, by Ken Sugimori; quoth the raven "copyright Nintendo!"
From left to right: Kabuto, Kabutops, Omastar and Omanyte

Ever since the glory days of Red and Blue, the scientists of the Pokémon world have been trying to resurrect ancient, extinct species of Pokémon from their fossilised remains – and, in many cases, they’ve succeeded.  Every generation except for the second has brought a new set of fossil Pokémon with it; Omastar, Kabutops and Aerodactyl from Red and Blue, Cradily and Armaldo from Ruby and Sapphire, Rampardos and Bastiodon from Diamond and Pearl, and now Archeops and Carracosta from Black and White.  One could also include, as an honourable mention, Ruby and Sapphire’s Relicanth, who, like his inspiration the coelacanth, is an extremely archaic species believed for many years to be extinct until a few were unexpectedly found very much alive in the deep ocean.  I talked about Archeops and Carracosta at some length when I was reviewing the Unova Pokédex last year, so there’s little point in discussing them further, and I’m not especially anxious to do detailed reviews on all of the others either when there are so many other projects on my list, but I do think it would be worthwhile to talk about them as a group, since the whole concept of a ‘fossil Pokémon’ is quite interesting, particularly with reference to the context in which Game Freak started using these ideas in the first place.

Continue reading “On Fossil Pokémon”

Archen and Archeops

9b6b7-archen…hang on, didn’t we do this already?  Like, way back in Generation One?  There was this prehistoric aerial predator, and it was a Rock/Flying-type, and it was really fast, and- oh, wait, no, that was Aerodactyl.  Aerodactyl is a pterosaur and Archeops is, well, an archaeopteryx, so there you have it.  Personally, as something of a dinosaurs-and-other-Mesozoic-beasties buff, I think that there’s quite enough of a distinction between an archaeopteryx and a pterodactyl to warrant having separate Pokémon, but that’s just me.  I suspect many (read: normal) people might disagree.  So, anyway, if we fire up the old Pokémadex, we learn that Archeops is the “First Bird” Pokémon from which all modern bird Pokémon supposedly descend.  This… raises more questions than it answers, actually.  Like, how come all prehistoric Pokémon were Rock-types?  Continue reading “Archen and Archeops”