Trying for something new here that is, in essence, me getting atop a soapbox about a particular subject and offering up my own thoughts, opinions, and predictions. These soapboxes will occur on the rare occasion when I’m feeling like getting my thoughts out on a certain subject and not having enough of a physical audience with which to banter back and forth on, so while this won’t be all too common, don’t be surprised when they crop up now and again. As the title of today’s post suggests, I’ll be talking about the upcoming newest generation of the Pokémon franchise, Sun & Moon.
To be fair, I’m far from being the first to broach this subject and even further from being an all-time expert on the Pokémon franchise as a whole. Regardless, I’ll try to bring up some rather interesting points and future possibilities I hope to see in the new generation.
First and foremost, the name of the game is Sun & Moon, which a great number of PokéFans out there are guessing that this game will be heavily influenced by Japanese myths, especially those pertaining to the story of the sun goddess Amaterasu and the moon god Tsukiyomi.
Admittedly, this does make the most sense not strictly because of it pertaining more to local myths and legends in Japan but because the story of Tsukiyomi and Amaterasu follows a similar vein as most version mascots/Legendary Pokémon have for the last several generations. If they are not direct opposites in powers, such as Xerneas and Yveltal or Groudon and Kyogre, then their purposes/reason for existence is vastly different like it is for Palkia and Dialga or Ho-Oh and Lugia.
However, the main point I want to focus on in this post is one thing that I think most people have overlooked outside the possibility of new Pokémon. That being evolutionary stones, primarily the precious few that cannot be purchased in stores. Moon, Sun, Dawn, and Dusk Stones are, thus far, the only evolutionary stones which cannot be purchased in store but can be found in a variety of other means either as dropped items, won in contests/other trainers, or even held by certain species of wild Pokémon. Yet what is most curious of all is what species of Pokémon these evolutionary stones affect.
Moon Stones can be used on a small number of Pokémon consisting mostly of those from Generation I. Nidorans, both male and female, both resemble rabbits thus tying them to the popular Japanese myth of the Rabbit in the Moon. Clefairy are famous for gathering and celebrating beneath the light of a full moon. Jigglypuff are famous for their voices lulling people to sleep day or night but whose evolved form of Wigglytuff strongly resembles a rabbit.
Admittedly, I was confused by the inclusion of Skitty until I noted that its facial marking is distinctly shaped like a crecent moon, a marking similarly found on Teddiursa which changes to a full moon circle upon it leveling up and evolving into a Ursaring, and both bear-like Pokémon having distinctive ties to the Ursa Major and Ursa Minor constellation. Last, but certainly not least, is Munna and its evolution Musharna, both based on the mythological dream eating tapir, much like Drowzee and Hypno of Generation I.
Speaking of the Moon, it should be noted that one of the strongest Fairy-type attacks in the game, thus far, is the attack Moonblast, which is only learned by Fairy-types with a few notable exceptions. Those being Swablu, whose Mega Evolution turns it into a Dragon/Fairy-type, Lunatone and Cresselia, both based on the crescent moon themselves, and surprising of all: Oddish.
I say surprising because Oddish, aside from using the Leaf Stone to evolve into a Gloom, can also utilize the Sun Stone into evolving into a Bellossom. In point of fact, all but one Pokémon in particular are Grass-types that make use of the Sun Stone to evolve. From Sunkern to Sunflora, Cottonee to Whimsicott and Petilil to Lilligant, what is rather notable about these Pokémon in particular is that of the three pairs, only Sunkern and Sunflower are directly connected to the Sun in any fashion with the two being based on sunflowers and their seeds.
Still, it should be noted that Cottonee and Whimsicott both require sunny skies in order to safely traverse through the air whereas Petilil and Lilligant are based on lilies, which are in turn a popular springtime flower in the West. Finally, there’s the odd one out in the bunch, the Pokémon Helioptile and its evolution Heliolisk, which are Electric/Normal-type Pokémon who generate electricity from basking in the light of the sun with Heliolisk in particular bearing a frill distinctly shaped like the sun.
Dawn Stones are notable in that, at the time of this post, only two Pokémon can utilize them and even then they must be of a certain gender to do so. This is particularly notable in that both Pokémon would otherwise evolve into a Pokémon that distinctly looks like the opposite gender that they are. Case in point a Kirlia, male or female, would normally evolve into a Gardevoir, a Pokémon that appears distinctly female, doubly so when its Mega Evolved, whereas if a male Kirlia is given a Dawn Stone, it evolves into Gallade, a veritable knight to Gardevoir’s princess.
Contrary wise, a Snorunt, male or female, would evolve into a Glalie, a Pokémon whose Mega Evolution has something strongly resembling a beard. If a female Snorunt is given a Dawn Stone though, it evolves into a Froslass, a Pokémon that is based on the Japanese mythical creature known as a yuki-onna.
Whatever the reasons might have been from the creative team, I like to think that the Dawn Stone was made to represent a new dawn in perception, particularly in the concept of its now how others perceive us but how we perceive ourselves and the conscious choice to bring what we are within to the outside world. I get this mostly from the description of the Dawn Stone being “it sparkles like a glittering eye.”
Dusk Stones, with one notable exception, are utilized by Ghost-type Pokémon to achieve evolution but it’s the kinds of ghostly Pokémon that piques my interest, especially when one considers that the Dusk Stone is described as being “dark as dark can be.” Mismagius, which evolves from a Misdreavous, is obviously based on witches and the like whereas Chandelure is based on the Japanese equivalent of a will-o-wisp, a creature predominately found in the darkest of nights to “help” guide lost souls. What makes these two Ghost Pokémon particularly interesting is that Mismagius, while devious, is generally a helpful Pokémon whereas Chandelure is notable for burning the souls of the dead thus condemning them to an eternity of wandering the Earth.
Moving on… There’s Aegislash, which can recognize the innate qualities of leadership in people and that whomever they recognize as their master is destined to become akin to a king if not a king outright. Rather surprising given that its base form, Honedge, is said to suck the life force out of anyone that dares to wield it while its secondary stage, Doublade, is said to be neigh unstoppable in the art of swordsmanship.
This of course has nothing to do with the Moon but I thought it interesting nonetheless. Last but not least is Honchkrow and Murkrow, both resembling ravens and are primarily based on Mafia leaders and witch’s ravens respectively. In point of fact, Murkrow are often used by Team grunts and Honchkrow by a leader most notably Giovanni of Team Rocket, Cyrus of Team Galactic, and Lysandre of Team Flare.
Finally, to wrap up this long soapbox of ideas, there’s the Pokémon that evolve only in certain times of the day and almost always with the highest affections towards their trainer as the catalyst. For those that evolve under the light of the Sun with just a bundle of happiness, it’s Riolu into Lucario and Budew into Roselia. Happiny is similar though it requires the aid of a held Oval Stone in order to become a Chansey. A Tyrunt will evolve into a Tyrantrum regardless of friendship so long as the appropriate level is reached and the sun is shining brightly.
For the night, there’s Amaura that, like its predatory cousin Tyrunt, can evolve no matter the degrees of friendship so long as the appropriate level is reached. Contrary wise though is Chingling which can only evolve into Chimecho with high happiness. Two particularly interesting examples of distinctly nighttime evolutions are for Gligar and Sneasel whom can only evolve into their next forms at night when they are traded whilst holding a Razor Fang and Razor Claw.
While there’s much to be debated and left to be seen for Sun & Moon, I can’t help but wonder if the version Legendary Pokémon will turn out to be the source of these evolutionary stones and, given the habits of those nighttime orientated Pokémon, if the “Moon” will be by far the most ferocious if not outright malicious Pokémon yet, perhaps even be the yet undiscovered “third” to the pair of Moon Legendary Pokémon, Cresselia the Pokémon of Dreams and the Hopeful Crescent Moon and Dark the Pokémon of Nightmares and the Dark New Moon.
Of course, I’m not forgetting the Eevee evolutions Espeon and Umbreon, both of which require high happiness and either the day or the night respectively save for one game. In Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness key items known as a Sun or Moon Shard is needed to evolve an Eevee into an Espeon or Umbreon, the one and only exception to the norm.
There is far more to these two Pokémon than mere evolutionary requirements. Espeon is known as the Sun Pokémon, a title it shares with Sunflora and Volcarona and one its signature moves is the move known as Morning Sun. This move, alongside Umbreon’s Moonlight, heals a Pokémon based on weather and time conditions. While not that likely, I wouldn’t be at all surprised to find this two Pokémon in particular to garner a Mega Evolution.
Welp, that’s all I got for today. Tune in next time I have a soapbox where I’ll likely focus my thoughts and opinions on the state of comic books, either the possibility of a modern retelling of Marvel vs. DC or a literally Marvel versus DC as far as how they handle characters they don’t want to use anymore. Of course, as I stated way back in the beginning, these soapbox posts will occur once in a blue moon.
Or shortly after I see Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, whichever comes first…