Name (required) asks:

So with Q-Fusion Hyper Abilities being a thing in gen VIII, how do you think they will impact the metagame?

Well, it was certainly a bold choice to give such a significant buff to all Pokémon with the letter q in their English names, but frankly it’s a pretty short list, and if you manage to fit two of those Pokémon onto your team, and manage to spend a turn fusing them, you deserve to get the ridiculous hyper-abilities.  Rayquaza would probably still prefer to mega-evolve than Q-fuse, but most of the others seem really powerful, and the beneficiaries are mostly Pokémon who haven’t gotten a whole lot of attention in the past.  Nidoquanid should be a powerhouse with Q-BubbleForce turning all its best attacks into super-powered dual-type Water versions that bypass immunity abilities.  Vespiqwilfish can stall forever since Q-Presstimidation drops the opponent’s attack stats every time they try to hurt you.  Eviolite Tranquilladin being immune to Flying attacks (as well as truly a ridiculous number of other things) thanks to Q-BigPecksProof makes it a really interesting counter to a lot of Pokémon.  Eviolite Squilava’s Q-FlashFireDish lets it heal not just from using Fire attacks or even being hit by Fire attacks, but from being in Sunny Day, or being in the party while someone else uses Fire attacks, or even just thinking about fire (and I admit it does seem a little excessive that the game will upgrade your Switch with a brain-scan capability just to facilitate this effect, but the flavour/design justification is so good that in my opinion it’s absolutely worth it).

Honestly these things are going to totally run away with the entire game if J-Armour GigaTech Moves turn out not to be the hard counter they’re supposed to be.

Dosidicus Giygas asks:

So apparently “Galar” is a Scots-Gaelic word that means disease. I wonder if Game Freak knows this?

Hmmm… whoops?

You know, I would love it if they did know this.  You could make it an early hint at a kind of hidden dystopian reality behind Galar’s very standard happy-go-lucky Pokéverse façade, where Poké-Scotland is being oppressed by the Poké-English bastards and they call the united region by a name that means “disease” to express their true feelings about it.  I’m just not sure Game Freak have it in them to be so delightfully subversive, though!  Jim the Editor says “Galar” reminds him of galahs, which are a sort of very noisy pink and grey parrot they have in Australia, and that’s probably not what Galar refers to either, but at least you could conceivably make a Pokémon out of it.

jeffthelinguist asks:

So… armored evolution. I think it’s not gonna be a thing and I think it’s stupid but… what do you think about the rumor? How would you feel if that was implemented?

I wouldn’t rule it out, honestly.  For those not following, the place this rumour comes from is a 4chan post from a few days before the announcement of Sword and Shield, which correctly predicted the names of the new games, and that they would be set in a region based on Great Britain, so it’s not wildly improbable that this person had some actual insider information (of course, even if they did, they might have had real information on the names and region, but then just made up other stuff to troll everyone, because… like… it’s 4chan, guys, come on).  One of the other predictions made therein is that Sword and Shield will introduce “armoured” evolutions, of Pokémon including Zeraora, Charizard, Flygon and Mewtwo.  And, I mean, you know you’ve wanted armoured Mewtwo since 1999, and Nintendo has just filed for the Japanese trademark on “Armoured Mewtwo,” and oh hey, they’re remaking that movie in 3D this year for some goddamn reason, and my respect for the Pokémon Company is just tenuous enough to believe that they would do that solely to plug an “armoured evolution” of Mewtwo.  A further prediction from the 4chan post is that Meltan will somehow be involved with all this, which… I mean, honestly, yeah; Meltan should start pulling its fµ¢£ing weight already.

Continue reading “jeffthelinguist asks:”

pokemaniacal maniac asks:

fwiw i really really love the first half of the pokemon reviews. I would read entire books about what you had to say lore and inspiration-wise on pretty much every pokemon. i dont play competitively, so the second half is always Just Info to me, but even that has helped me understand the meta as it is, which is also interesting! personally, i would rank the reviews as my favorite thing (and like you said, the sheer scope and the worldbuilding analysis you extrapolate from the pokemon themselves should make you proud) and your If I Ran The Zoo type stuff my second favorite. this is long and rambling but i just have been a long time fan and youre a bright spot on a dark internet and thanks!

[This submission is a response to this]

That’s actually really helpful feedback; thanks!  After frankly kind of flubbing generation VII (due in part to unavoidable real-life circumstances, but also due to mismanagement on my part) I want to revise my approach to generation VIII.  The first thing is that I don’t think I should write a full narrative-based playthrough journal the way I did for White 2, X and Moon – because that’s fun, and I know a lot of people did enjoy them, but it takes so long, and I think the Pokémon reviews ought to be the highest priority.  It would be better, I think, to start those within a month or two of release.  And then the reviews themselves I think have become too expansive, and don’t play to my strengths.  If I could cut down the competitive stuff (there are better places to go on the internet for that kind of advice; no one needs me for that), and limit that side to just discussion of signature moves and abilities, or moves that cast a particularly interesting light on a Pokémon’s character design, then that, I think, would be a worthwhile economy to pursue.  I really want to commit to making sure that this blog’s future includes more of the theoretically dense worldbuilding and games-as-storytelling stuff that inspired “If I Were In Charge,” so trying to slim down the Pokémon reviews and “get them out of the way” is probably a good idea, as long as I can keep the parts of them that my readers value.

Map of Galar

I’m really coming around to the suggestion that Galar is Great Britain upside down. Observe:

Which wouldn’t even be unprecedented; after all, they rotated Maui ninety degrees counterclockwise to create Akala Island in Alola.

The real question is, if Galar is upside down, where the hell is Kalos?