Pokemon X & Y's crazy and creepy Pokedex entries
by Steve Watts, shacknews.com, Oct 17, 2013 11:05AM PDT
Pokemon X and Y chronicle that special time in a young person's life when they leave home because a professor they've never heard of wants them to capture vicious monsters and make them fight each other. It's a classic tale, and discovering new critters is part of the lighthearted joy of any Pokemon game. That is, until you read their Pokedex entries and discover that some of them are strange, creepy, or incredibly dark.
Fletchinder is the perfect example of the team at The Pokemon Company thinking through why a creature would have the ability to spit fire. Why, to burn down the habitat of its prey and force them out of hiding, of course.
"From its beak, it expels embers that set the tall grass on fire. Then it pounces on the bewildered prey that pop out of the grass."
They get points for being thorough, at the very least. Even if a Pokemon isn't billed as an efficient hunter, though, it might not have control over its own abilities. Barbaracle is said to have little control over what its arms and legs do, but the limbs "usually follow the head's orders." Usually.
Some Pokemon sound like they've been militarized. Chesnaught is apparently strong enough to flip a 50-ton tank and Meowstic can psychically vaporize trucks--oddly specific pieces of knowledge that you just know come from experience. It's also worth noting that Chesnaught is the final evolution of Chespin, the starter Pokemon that looks like a teddy bear wearing a silly hat.
Others Pokemon, like Clawitzer, basically just spell out their war-time applications.
"Their enormous claws launch cannonballs of water powerful enough to pierce tanker hulls."
Or Dragalge, for when cannonballs are too humane for your enemies.
"Their poison is strong enough to eat through the hull of a tanker, and they spit it indiscriminately at anything that enters their territory."
Geez, what do Pokemon have against tankers?
Then there are the ones that are just pants-wettingly terrifying. Gourgeist's entry, for example, sounds like something straight out of a horror film. If you hear it coming, it's already too late. You have no choice but to await your inevitable demise, and the little Poke-sadist will enjoy every minute of it.
"Singing in eerie voices, they wander town streets on the night of the new moon. Anyone who hears their song is cursed. / It enwraps its prey in its hair like arms. It sings joyfully as it observes the suffering of its prey."
The various Pokemon that are really just possessed objects means that the inhabitants of this world not only know for a fact that ghosts exist, but that these restless spirits have powers that can manifest themselves in the real world and hurt you. Phantump is a rotten tree stump inhabited by "the spirits of children who died while lost in the forest." That is according to the "old tales," which may mean it's just something parents would tell their children to keep them from wandering off.
Honedge is similarly a ghost story, but the Pokedex doesn't mention anything about it being an old wives tale. It treats the subject with utter seriousness.
"Apparently this Pokémon is born when a departed spirit inhabits a sword. It attaches itself to people and drinks their life force. / If anyone dares to grab its hilt, it wraps a blue cloth around that person's arm and drains that person's life energy completely.
"Holy crap," you might be saying to yourself as you remember that this is a game ostensibly made for children. "A soul-sucking sword?" But don't worry. If this one evolves, it stops drinking souls and makes a completely lateral move towards politics. Honedge's evolved form, Aegislash, was used to select monarchy, acting like a Pokemized version of King Arthur's Lady of the Lake.
"Apparently, it can detect the innate qualities of leadership. According to legend, whoever it recognizes is destined to become king."
Of course, if the people thought of revolting because they didn't particularly like their leaders being chosen by a sentient, soul-sucking weapon, Aegislash also came in handy to keep them in line with mass hypnotism.
"Generations of kings were attended by these Pokémon, which used their spectral power to manipulate and control people and Pokémon."
That's right. Pokemon: cute, cuddly, collectible creatures that will start forest fires, vaporize steel, drain your soul, and rule you with an iron fist. Gotta catch 'em all!
[Images and Pokedex entries courtesy of Bulbapedia.]