I bloody love Pokémon, I do. I’ve played the vast majority of the games (or at least the proper ones, none of this ‘Mystery Dungeon’ pish) over the years and enjoyed every one. I’ve sentenced countless monsters to spend the rest of eternity in the dark in someone’s computer somewhere, been battered bloody by bloody annoying rivals, marveled at the increasingly impressive Pokémon swap graphics and stared in horror at the nurse in the Pokémon Centre as she cheerfully chirps “we hope to see you again!”

This bitch wants your Pokémon dead.

Some people – many… most – see me as childish for still playing the games, but those people are silly. Behind all the cute ‘mons and pastel graphics lies a game of great depth and complexity: of strategy, where deciding which monsters you take on your team, the order you send them out and which moves you use determine whether you win or lose a battle; of RPG, where you’re constantly developing your Pokémon to become a master and, most importantly, of fun: there’s nothing better than finally capturing a monster you’ve spent the best part of ten minutes thrashing to a pulp to make it easier to catch. Sure, it’s aimed at a younger demographic, but there’s no reason that adults can’t enjoy it as well. Plus it all looks quite nice.

Go on, look into his eyes and tell him he's not cute.

Anyway, Pokémon Black & White came out recently and I was all up in that shit like a tramp on chips (sorry for the analogy theft, Jake). I got home, chucked it onto my kitchen table and forgot about it as I suffered a bad bout of the ‘flu. When I had recovered, I ripped open the box, tore out the game, slapped it into my DS and flicked the shit out of the power switch. I watched the cool-looking opening FMV, choose my first starter Pokémon – Oshawott FTW – and started chuffing about in the grass. It was all so familiar yet different: it was glorious.

A graphical representation of how I felt.

I was rushing about the grass, hoping to meet some exotic new Pokés. There were some interesting new additions I bumped into and I was looking forward to capturing my first new Pokémon.

Then this thing popped up.

Let’s look at this one, Pidove, a little more closely…

Upon encountering this, one thought struck me harder than a Ninja Gaiden train hitting a wall of CoD grenade spam: that’s a fucking pigeon, not a Pokémon. It wasn’t exotic in anyway: it’s grey with red feet, has a small beak and is one of the tiniest Pokémon you could imagine. Even the name’s a portmanteau of ‘pigeon’ and ‘dove’, for fuck’s sake.

Pidove used Gust! It's not very effective…

The issue of unoriginal Pokémon has been flagged up before with a whole host of monsters – Meowth’s basically a cat, Kangaskhan is obviously a kangaroo, Doduo’s a two-headed ostrich and if you can’t tell what Ponyta, Tepig and Seel are meant to be, you’re an idiot – but at least they added something to make them more distinguishable: Meowth had a fixation with coins, Kangaskhan was an armour-plated mama bear protecting its youngling, Ponyta had a mane of fire and Seel ,erm, had a horn.

A horn, not THE horn, you perv.

But Pidove takes the cake. There’s absolutely nothing original about it at all. It’s a commonly-seen garden variety pigeon. If I’d wanted to throw balls at unconscious birds, I’d go down to the park armed with a load of those crap rubber bouncy ball things. Give me things like Poliwrath, Snorlax, Slowpoke and Mudkip, not bloody pigeons. This lack of creativity when it comes to the new Pokémon makes it evident that perhaps the developers should have stopped when they reached their creative plateau rather than force out new monsters, of which there are now almost 650. Even I think they’ve gone a bit overboard with the number you can catch: anything past the first 250 is mostly forgettable.

Oh, well. I’ll catch him and shove him in my Pokébox. Hopefully the next Pokémon I encounter will be more original than a real life animal.

Oh, for God’s sake…


4 responses to “Unorigimon”

  1. Susan avatar

    It’s better when it evolves.
    Personally, I took real offense at some of the ‘original’ Pokemon who didn’t really work. Like Gothita. Pfft.

  2. Arkayla avatar

    It’s not just the unoriginality of the new pokemon, a lot of them are just bloody stupid looking. I played through to the post elite 4 section of the game and still couldn’t form a 6 man team of critters I actually liked.

  3. Duncan avatar

    Yeah, I’m with Arkayla. I can accept Pidove, but some just look like a bunch of random geometric shapes stuck together with superglue.

    And don’t even get me STARTED on Unown…

  4. Ryan avatar

    I stumbled across this recently. You have issues with Pidove and don’t mention Pidgey, Pideot or Piedgeotto. That makes the Pidove 1,000,000 worse as they are rinsing an already used idea and just changed the colours. They are all birds set to mimic pidgeons and other real life birds, why do we need so many?

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