One lunatic's love-hate relationship with the Pokémon franchise, and his addled musings on its rights, wrongs, ins and outs. Come one, come all, and indulge my delusions of grandeur as I inflict my opinions on anyone within shouting distance.
did you notice that in gen 7 mega evolution was quietly retconned from an emotional bond-based transformation to being more of an energy-fueled mutation and generally a cruel thing to do to a pokemon? the SM and USUM pokedex entries for mega evos are pretty much all about how much pain the pokemon is in, how it’s been mutated into a grotesque form that distresses it, how it hates being in that form, etc. and none of them are positive or mention the pokemon’s bond with the trainer
Well… I’m looking through the Pokédex entries and I think
it’s a bit more ambiguous than that.
There are several Pokémon for whom this seems like a fair description of
the Pokédex text on their Mega Evolved forms, but they’re certainly not a
majority, and there are also two Mega Evolved Pokémon who explicitlylike
their new forms: Mega Slowbro is said to be “pretty comfortable” ensconced
inside Shellder, while Mega Pinsir supposedly never touches the ground because
it’s overcome with happiness at being able to fly. There are two more that explicitly cite the
importance of the Pokémon’s bond with its trainer (Mega Charizard Y and Mega
Gyarados). I think that pretty well
rules out any general statement about what Mega Evolution is like for all
Pokémon; it affects each of them differently (which, well, makes sense). But there are also those more
disturbing entries referencing things like “sharp pain and suffering” or body
parts becoming “misshapen.” I think in most
of these cases it’s relevant that the Pokémon involved are… well, let’s just
say they’re not necessarily Pokémon you’d want at a child’s birthday
party. Mega Evolution is – in my opinion
– an exaggeration of everything distinctive about a Pokémon. Whatever a Pokémon already does, Mega
Evolution turns it up to eleven. I don’t
think they were designed with the intention that they should be proper viable
organisms in their own right; they’re ridiculous overpowered battle modes that
are supposed to be assumed for minutes at a time, at the very most. It sort of makes sense that they should often
be quite stressful. Furthermore, if you
have a Pokémon already known for viciousness or destructiveness… well, let’s
see what happens, starting from the ones that aren’t particularly objectionable.
I thought about Pokémon ethics and something occurred to me, Pokémon are dangerous. Of course humans use devices to contain them, it’s the one way we can survive in that hostile world, where there are creatures that can destroy you mind, body, and even soul. The fact that they become tame after capture despite obviously still having free will is incredibly lucky on our part, and shows it’s mutually beneficial, because if they wanted to, they’d destroy us and be rid of us, and we couldn’t stop it
I noticed that Tyranitar’s the only pseudo-legendary to not be used by a final boss in its introductory games; any guesses as to why they didn’t give Lance one in GSC/HGSS? It’s reasonably draconic-looking (hey, they made Tyrantrum a Dragon!) and it’s quite powerful and God knows Lance could do without one of his blasted cheating Dragonite and get some variety in his team! Similarly, any thoughts as to why they didn’t give Steven a Magneton, a strong Steel Pokémon that was available in RSE/ORAS?
You know, I’ve never thought about it… I think there are several plausible reasons, though. First, in most generations, there’s someone new who fills that role, whereas Lance was an established character already and Dragonite was firmly set as his signature Pokémon before Gold and Silver happened. And this was only the second generation, so it’s not like this was already a rule or convention by that point; in Red and Blue the final final boss was the rival character, not the guy with the Dragonite. And maybe the very fact that they didn’t give Lance a Tyranitar, in contrast to the way they’ve behaved more recently, says something about what they think Tyranitar is supposed to be – that is, maybe there’s something about him that strikes Game Freak as particularly not draconic, possibly because he’s basically a dinosaur and therefore needs to be a Rock-type (yes, you can compare Tyrantrum, but that’s fifteen years later, and I don’t know if I’d expect 100% consistency over such a long period on something as vague as what the Dragon type is; they may have different ideas about it now). I also kinda think maybe they had in mind for Larvitar and its evolutions to be almost like a “secret” Pokémon – Larvitar doesn’t show up until the very end of the game, at Mount Silver, and neither it nor its evolutions are ever used by any trainer prior to that. Misdreavus is the same. I think that’s part of a deliberate choice, meant to emphasise the remoteness of Mount Silver – there are Pokémon there that you won’t even have heard of during a playthrough of Gold or Silver, and Larvitar, Pupitar and Tyranitar are part of creating that aesthetic.