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Individual Values: A Pokémon Feature - Week 80: Poké-Finding Your Place

Jonathan Higgins

Welcome to the eightieth week of my Pokémon feature here on Game Podunk! In case you missed last week's, check it out. Stay tuned for future entries coming every Friday.


Victini will be available via the Nintendo Network until September 24th. Every single Mythical Pokémon will be distributed during a specific month for the remainder of this year. Now may be your only chance for a really long time, to actually catch them all!







Poké-Finding Your Place



It“s very rare that I come away from Pokémon News feeling almost overwhelmed. Where do I even start this time? The stuff you can unpack from the newest trailer probably rivals a Snorlax in weight, so I think we should start by watching it. I should discuss everything our eyes take in here, even though multiple bits from it could probably stand to have future IV pieces devoted to them. So it goes.


First and foremost, we have the new Pokémon Type: Null. Its typing [Normal] and ability [Battle Armor] don“t necessarily speak to anything remarkable about it...but that“s definitely a weird name, and a very bizarre appearance, too. Take a look at the website's listing for it, too. Type: Null seems to be a constructed Pokémonkind of like Mewtwo, I supposethat "can adapt to any situation". Here“s my theory, based on everything we've seen about it so far...particularly the fact that it wears a mask. We could be looking at what MISSINGNO turns into, if you transfer it from Pokémon Red, Blue or Yellow Version on 3DS by way of Pokémon Bank. Its overall appearance, name, and masked "nothingness" references kind of beg for this. Its stats from back then could certainly rival "Pokémon spoken of in mythology"! ... It“d be real weird and cool for them to make MISSINGNO canon in the anniversary games.


Next up is Jangmo-o... a Dragon type Pokémon that“s likely going to be immune to Hyper Voice since it packs Soundproof as an ability. Not bad at all! Can“t wait to see what it evolves into. The Alolan Forme of Raticate is going to beg for memes as much as its pre-evolution. Those cheeks are the stuff of legends!




And now for something a little nuts: Pokémon Sun & Pokémon Moon are set twelve hours apart from one another, but they“ll still operate in real time. This means that if you play a copy of Pokémon Moon at 4 PM Eastern, it“ll be 4 AM in the game. There“s a real possibility that Moon players will be in practically endless night, depending on when you“re most able to play the game. Both story and battle elements will play out differently in each version, as a result of this time schema. I can definitely see why they“re attempting something like this. It could certainly make for the biggest crop of version differences in series history.


Also introduced is the Aether Foundation. There“s Lusamine, Faba, Wicke, and their employees. This group seems kind of like the opposite of Team Skull--existing primarily to protect Pokémon from harm, on a man-made island separate from the four major spots in the Alola region. The Internet is already predicting which one of them is going to end up a turncoat. I wonder how Team Skull's "Enforcer" will work into it. Oddly comforting to see a bit of nihilism in the Pokémon fandom. Call me crazy from reading a little too much of the Pokémon Manga lately--but what if the whole foundation turns crazy on us, deciding that humanity is a blight that are getting in the way of Pokémon and...seek to eradicate everyone but them? ...Moving on!



There seems to be a whole sidequest involving the search for Zygarde's Cells and Cores, too. I guess the game is following behind the anime, in this respect. But could Zygarde's appearance in Sun & Moon bring more Kalos-specific characters besides Dexio and Sina from X & Y? I wonder if "Z-Moves" factor into Zygarde itself, too. While it“s not looking very likely that players will be able to journey to Kalos itself, I think a whole subplot involving Zygarde, Lysandre, and Team Flare will indeed factor into Sun & Moon somehow!




And then we reach the point in the trailer where the Internet/fandom exploded: Pokémon Snap is returning to the main series, by way of the "PokéFinder". This gizmo is a camera for use with the Rotom Dex that lets you snap photos of wandering critters around the world. The trailers showcased things like a wild Pikachu striking a pose, a Dragonite flying through the air, an Eevee and Lillipup playing together, and more. Your photos can be rated--and as your sense of photography improves, you“ll gain extra features to go along with it [like the ability to zoom in]. Sure sounds like a fully functional "Snap" to me. Take a look at this tweet. Take pictures of every Pokémon? Yes, please! It seems like only certain areas in the Alola region will be "Snap"-friendly.


Last, but most certainly not least: What the heck are Ultra Beasts? They're a thing that "poses a threat to both humans and Pokémon"--so I don“t think the newly revealed "UB-01" is a Pokémon at all. I'm piggy-backing off Twitter-friend @BombosMedallion here, but: what if these things help pave the way to actual RPG-style bosses in Pokémon? If they're not Pokémon themselves, they cannot be caught. And they're not Trainers, so they won't use other critters in battle. It could be crazy if these things end up being very high-powered foes to face in battle using tricks like Z-Moves to gain the upper-hand.



Here“s another person that may be onto something. These UBs could resemble major characters in-game. What if their narrative is set up kind of like Persona, where we get a major character developed around a UB that ends in a big boss fight--not against the Trainer, but against a UB--like many an RPG sidequest? Certainly not unique to the genre, but absolutely a first for Game Freak themselves. I“m interested to see where they decide to take these things.



...Almost 1,000 words later: like I said, there“s a lot to unpack. What“s your favorite new reveal of the latest Sun & Moon trailer? Does the twelve hour time-difference make you rethink your previous "version of choice?" Be sure to share!

Edited by Jonathan Higgins

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