Building the Best Pokémon Team (Part 26)

Building the Best Pokémon Team (Part 26)

We’re just about getting to the halfway point of the Unova Dex, which is traditionally where the Pokémon designs begin to get a little more interesting. You’re far away from the generic birds and rats, and getting into heavy metal crocodiles and ghostly coffins. Mind you, you occasionally get the odd trashbag cropping up in places of the Pokédex where it really shouldn’t be – like Stantler being near Blissey and the Legendary Dogs in Johto, or the many generic Water types taking up residence next to the Regis in Hoenn. This time around though, I fear the trash may be just a bit too literal.


This cool crocodile will put the hurt on you, and he’ll make it snappy. Do you think inbuilt sunglasses offer an evolutionary advantage? Even if they don’t, what’s wrong with a bit of style? Of course, some animals in our world just epitomise danger and viciousness, and crocodiles are one of them. The softest crocodile is tougher than the hardest Dewgong, you know? Krookodile even adds to the coolness with a cry that sounds like a distorted guitar. And with its Dark-type and high Attack, it’s got some of the meanest Crunch and Bite attacks around. Krookodile will look great next to any trainer with a bit of attitude. I must warn you that it is weak to Roger Moore-types – you will have seen that scene in Live and Let Die where he quite literally runs all over a load of crocodiles. As I’m severely lacking in attitude, I actually prefer baby crocodiles, simply because they look like cute little lizards, and better than that, they sound exactly like arcade classic Galaga. It doesn’t get any better than Krookodile and his kronies.


Darmanitan is known for having what he calls a Zen Mode, where he’ll revert from his aggressive demeanour into a little blue kind of chimpanzee. You could think of it as Donkey and Diddy, all rolled into one. Respect for his meditation skills, but that’s not much use in fight, now is it? And that’s a shame really because a big gorilla like Aggro Mode Darmanitan can do some serious damage if you let it. You wouldn’t want to be falling into an enclosure with one anyway, as those who mixed it up with Harambe nearly proved. You need your monkey manservant to be strong at all times though, not liable to lose his bottle after the first big hit he takes. Sorry, Darmanitan, you’re just too zen for this world.


It’s a dancing cactus, which seems to have become remembered for being forgotten. Well, I don’t think you’d forget a cactus if you fell face-first into one, although it must be noted that any plant which crosses the threshold of my house is destined to die almost immediately – even the hardy cactus. Maybe Cacturne from Gen 3 with its no-nonsense looks, only missing a fag dangling from its mouth, could survive the ardours of my abode. But Maractus seems a bit too smiley, a bit too naïve, to do well. So you can’t take it home, and you can’t take it to battle. Well, I’ve had worse girlfriends.


Before moving out I didn’t really anticipate that we’d have a snail problem. Actually, it’s a bit harsh calling them a problem – those little boys and girls are tasked with carrying their entire home around on their backs, so it’s not nice for me to boot them, catch them on the volley, throw them at passing cars etc etc. There were some fun and games though, me and my childhood pals would sometimes race the snails. I don’t think any of them made it to the finish line before we got bored. As if in revenge for my anti-snail insolence, Crustle’s come along with not just a shell but an entire tectonic plate on its back, and it’s strong enough to carry more if you want it to. I know it’s not quite a snail, but it’s some sort of shelled insect, and that’s good enough for me. Good luck eating this tough bugger in your fancy French restaurant.


I see some of myself in Scrafty. Firstly, we’re both well handy in a fight, and more than willing to resort to the dark arts to get a win. And secondly, we both struggle to keep our trousers up, especially when we’re goin’ to work on somebody. These wardrobe malfunctions will probably land both of us in legal hot water some day, although if that’s with Officer Jenny, then I say it’s hot water worth landing in. But listen, this is where the comparisons end; Scrafty is the Hoodlum Pokémon, meaning it’s likely to be found at the shops, racking up ASBOs. Whereas me, I’m a polite little choir boy… until I need to bite some ankles.


I’m not into art, whether that’s contemporary, modern, or the stuff the cavemen used to put on the walls. Dirty protests I like, though. It’s an Irish thing. Anyway, it means I’m not qualified to even begin to describe whatever the hell Sigilyph is. I suspect if you chanced across this thing at night-time, then you’d already be living your last moments. There’d be a disorienting flash or something and you’d just collapse in a feverish state before death claimed you. It might be a peaceful way to go out – better than a dirty protest fuelled hunger strike gone long, let’s say. And a lot better than cutting your own ear off and dying in anonymity.


Nintendo and Game Freak’s own Draconian rules meant that Cofagrigus couldn’t be traded online (unless you nicknamed your friendly coffin) due to a homophobic slur in its name. That’s hardcore, since it means you’ll always have to provide your own coffin to battle with. Best of luck carrying one though, coffins are a bit of a nemesis of mine – unfortunately I’ve had to carry a couple, and good Lord are they heavy, not to mention the stakes are pretty damn high. Drop a coffin and you will never, ever, live it down – and nor will the poor sod inside it. I like to think Cofagrigus is a dropped coffin back for revenge. And if I saw a flying ghost coffin with arms flying towards me, I think I’d drop a cadaverine-flavoured load in my pants.


It appears to be a turtle wearing one of those tactical vests that the Special Forces wear over in the States. I don’t know if this means Carracosta has more protection, or less – probably less, considering this thing became extinct and can only be revived via Fossil magic – but I do know that if the long-arms of the Carracosta law came swiping at me, in similar fashion to Cofagrigus above, then I’d be gicking myself. I’m probably safe here in Ireland though, which is 95% grass, and Carracosta happens to be particularly weak to Grass. I guess that’s why we don’t get many turtles here, huh? If you find yourself on something called a savannah or a prairie, however, then Carracosta will probably do well for you.


I like the look of Archeops, it could be a useful companion for those slightly more eccentric villains. It’d look great in a Mayan-style lair, if snakes and piranhas were a bit passé for you. Unfortunately Archeops cannot be relied upon in battle, because once it goes below half-health it almost literally falls to pieces. Now, I reckon that even if I did get the heavyweight title shot, or I played in the World Cup for Ireland, I’d burst into tears at the first little thing to go against me. This is why I’m not a professional athlete and this is why Archeops can’t claim a spot on your team. Do keep it in mind for your Cuban druglord villa, though, if you ever get that lucky.


Your eyes don’t deceive you, it’s a bag of rubbish Pokémon. What do you think is going to happen if you send this thing into battle? Firstly, you’ll be immediately judged in the harshest possible way by all present. Secondly, the smell will be unbelievable, and you and your binbag mate will be responsible for that, so everyone will think you’re a scruff – and you can times that by two if it’s a sweltering hot day. It even looks apologetic at the state of itself. I bet it’s bloody fragile as well, like when you’re taking a binbag out that is so overflowing and packed to capacity that it starts to tear and leak everywhere, spraying that awful bin juice all over your hand. Weurgh!


Zoroark can morph into any Pokémon and impersonate them, which is quite a feat when you consider its hourglass figure. I believe it was the first Pokémon of Generation V announced to the world, which was enough to get it an entire movie, as well as a particularly anime Hisuian form. That’s quite a push, in wrestling parlance, but it still wasn’t enough. Zoroark never quite hit the heady heights of Lucario, which means you’re sort of playing with second-best here, and you know that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery – and who wants to be flattering, or sincere? I prefer Zoroark when it’s being itself, but it’s still a bit lightweight, a bit one-dimensional for me. Stick with Ditto, which will also die some horrible deaths in the midst of its perfomative imitation.


You just can’t win with a mink coat. If it’s real, you’ll get burned at the stake, because fur is murder. But if it’s synthetic, you’ll be labelled a cheapskate, which is arguably worse than murder. But what other purpose could the common mink serve? I probably wouldn’t have the heart to skin little Cinccino here, but then I wouldn’t have it in me to slaughter a cow either, but I’ll certainly eat enough of its backside. Never mind scalping it, you probably wouldn’t win any friends even keeping Cinccino as a pet, they’ll still think you’re cruel. Obviously it’s useless in battle as well. Just leave this thing to star in nature documentaries, and YouTube care videos hosted by overenthusiastic Australians.


It appears that goths are an endangered species. This is a pity for all the lads, because we all like a chunky goth girl if we’re truly honest. It’s better still when you go back to their house and you discover that they don’t just wear black outside of the house to fit in – they’re properly into it, black wallpaper, death metal at crazy decibels, gags and chains, the lot. And there in the corner, watching you squirm, is her pet Gothitelle – and she just nails that classic goth double-look, the one the proper dyed-in-the-velvet goths give, where she looks like butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth before she takes you home and gives you a pegging most splendid. I’m not trying to spark some Rule 34 here, guys; I’m just saying that Gothitelle would open your mind, your eyes, and maybe something else as well.

To Be Continued!

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