Part 3: Catch-a-thon 2003Part 3: Catch-a-thon 2003
There's a fair few trainers to battle here and we'll start with this girl for a very specific reason.
It's our next team member! Flaaffy is a great Pokemon in general, but as a hard hitting Electric type with paralysis, it'll be our main catching mon for this game. You always need one.
While Espeon gets covered in cotton, Bayleef enters Hyper Mode. This will be pretty good timing, actually.
Least usable starter my butt, LOOK AT ITS FACE.
So you want to get your Shadow Pokemon to its third gauge as soon as possible as that reveals its nature as well as letting it gain experience. Though since the Heart Gauge covers the exp bar, it'll be a little while before we're actually given all that experience we're now earning. Brave is +Atk -Spd, which is, hey, pretty good, I'll take it.
Synthesis will save on Super Potions in the early game, but I'm not too bothered. Shall we catch Flaaffy?
There we go, as easy as that. Let's go over our new team member!
Flaaffy, 120 catch rate (50%, low health with Pokeball), starting moves: Thundershock, Thunder Wave, Cotton Spore, Shadow Rush/Thunderbolt
Our midway between a sheep and a lighthouse is a pretty cool critter, hitting nice and hard with Electric moves and keeping Shadow Pokemon in check with Thunder Wave, making them easier to catch. Though there is a slight problem with Flaaffy: it can't hit Ground types at all after being Shadow, which is pretty damn annoying. Again, it has very few options like a lot of Pokemon in this game, so the best remedy is Brick Break. Why not Iron Tail, perhaps? Well, it's postgame, so I won't bother mentioning it. It'll get Light Screen soon enough to pair with Espeon's Reflect and paralysis is a great status to catch Pokemon with, since it's very reliable, aside from Ground types, of course. But otherwise, aside from Rain Dance and Thunder, it doesn't have much to it. That seems to be a bit of a theme with my team so far, huh.
The move SHADOW RUSH inflicts damage on any kind of POKEMON without being affected by their types. The amount of damage doesn't vary with the target POKEMON's type, so it's easy to use.
Why do the trainers here have these strange POKEMON? I'm sure of it now. The town's hiding a big secret!
Let's spend $700 instead of $100 to heal up and start getting Flaaffy's gauge down.
Excellent! I like a man who can come to a quick decision! Let's have it out!
Get ready to see a lot of Shadow Pokemon in this area.
Might be a bit tricky to catch due to its high SpDef and knowing Fly. But that's cool, they finally keep birds flapping when they do th-
Oh... never mind.
Hi Wingull, bye Wingull.
I can tell I'm gonna have a lot of fun pausing at the right moment to take screenshots.
This birb is being a little bitch, but we eventually wear it down. Now to catch it.
Alright, cool. Let's talk Noctowl.
Noctowl, 90 catch rate (33%, low health with Pokeball), starting moves: Fly, Hypnosis, Reflect, Shadow Rush/Steel Wing
One of the best Pokemon in the game simply because of Hypnosis, which is amazing against Shadow Pokemon. It stops them using their recoil move and makes them much easier to catch. Aside from that it's pretty rubbish, since it has physical STABs despite higher SpAtk. Its stats are pretty mediocre regardless and will be an alright support Pokemon, though by that I mean Toxic and Reflect. It'll need Return to do some damage, or your best move will be Take Down, as well as Fly. Meh. Psychic is practically postgame, so you'll eventually get Confusion, but it's a bit away, so you're kinda stuck. So use it if you want to catch Shadow Pokemon and do a bit of team support.
Call is pretty good when your Pokemon has literally nothing to do while the other Pokemon is using a Pokeball. Thankfully Shadow Rush's recoil isn't much, but man does it make me nervous.
Right, then! I like your style! Here's a useful tip. If a POKEMON goes into HYPER MODE, its attacks become more likely to be critical hits. What a surprise, hey?
Guess which one is the Shadow Pokemon?
Skiploom, 120 catch rate (50%, low health with Pokeball), starting moves: Mega Drain, Cotton Spore, Sleep Powder, Shadow Rush/Synthesis
Wanted Noctowl with a more accurate Sleep move? Congrats, Skiploom is the best Pokemon in the game due to it learning the most accurate Sleep move! Aside from that though, it's pretty damn trash, due to really low offenses and it learning all the moves it can via level up. It needs TMs to be better because it won't learn Giga Drain by itself and it can barely do a bit of damage with Sunny Day and Solarbeam, since it can probably eat a Fire hit with its alright SpDef. Otherwise, it'll just go first and put something to Sleep. That's all it really does and honestly, that's all it needs to do. It's skipped the other powder moves to do something else, including Leech Seed. So, uh, yeah, it's a cute cat plant, that's its big plus.
Espeon is gonna have some fun today.
This is pretty good, but it doesn't hugely matter how fast the gauge goes down at the moment, since we can't do anything about it going to zero yet.
Firstly, Static is super good for the uncommon paralysis chance, great for Ground types. Secondly, Call also wakes up sleeping Pokemon, making Awakenings COMPLETELY useless. Love it.
Ah, oh no, how could you crit.
I could've used our new Thunder Wave on Skiploom, but I'd rather take out Dustox, then catch Skiploom. Much more fun!
If you ever get the urge to battle with me again, I'll always be here for you, honey!
Now the cool thing about this game is no Shadow Pokemon is missable, all trainers with a Shadow Pokemon can be rematched at some point during the game and you can rematch them infinitely until you catch their Shadow Pokemon. Though for some you can rematch immediately, others you have to wait a long time to see them again.
Ah good, Thunder Wave came just in time...
Quagsire, 90 catch rate (33%, low health with Pokeball), starting moves: Surf, Slam, Amnesia, Shadow Rush/Mud Shot
Now this is something good. You can see why Croconaw might have some competition, cause sure, it doesn't have amazing stats, but it gets a lot more physical moves and a much better type. Surf is just there as a novelty, since it won't do much aside from chip damage, but relatively quick STAB Earthquake is absolutely no joke, while Mud Shot and Slam are perfectly fine until then, though you'll use Shadow Rush instead of Slam. You'll fall over to a Grass attack, but those won't be too common and with Amnesia, you'll be able to take some good hits. It also gets Yawn, but the AI tends to not let you get away with that if they can help it, so it's not too useful, unless you want to force switches. Still, you'll only have Earthquake, since Sludge Bomb is postgame and Rock Tomb isn't in this game, so your options are a bit limited. Blizzard might be an option if you don't like doing damage, but anyway, it's a cool mon, maybe get it.
So far Shadow Rush isn't doing much for us, but that's because we need some physical attackers to really abuse it. Still, it does some alright damage for the moment.
Oh god no
Okay phew that was pretty lucky. Don't worry, we'll have a Shadow Pokemon faint sooner or later.
Onto the next trainer.
Ooh now this is an interesting Pokemon to get early, let's talk abo-
Misdreavus, 45 catch rate (40%, low health, paralysis, Great Ball), starting moves: Shadow Ball, Mean Look, Confuse Ray, Shadow Rush/Psybeam
While physical Ghost types didn't exist until Gen 3, Misdreavus with STAB Shadow Ball and the Spell Tag it always comes with does a lot of damage, especially when super effective, as we just saw. It's a good thing too, as Shadow Ball is postgame (bah), so it's a nice boost, along with Psybeam, though as mentioned before, Psychic is postgame as well, more or less. This also means it won't get other special moves, since Thunderbolt is similar to Psychic and Shock Wave isn't in this game. Thunder is still an option, but Rain Dance will make you less sad. Still with Confuse Ray and eventually Perish Song, you'll be causing a lot of havoc, especially since the basic AI doesn't really handle the only Ghost type you can obtain in the game and Levitate is just the icing on the cake. It's also a bit fragile and will only really have Psybeam to work with, but if this shrieking madame appeals to you, then it's not that bad.
Alright Umbreon, time to shine again to weaken this Ghost. We will absolutely paralyze this thing, since Umbreon is our only Shadow Ball resist, so it will rampage through our team if we let it.
Maybe not the time, but hey we caught it. Also, since I'm using the shiny Misdreavus for my music icon, did you notice it's posed differently to the normal Misdreavus pic? Every single shiny in the game does it and that's a lot of damn effort for something most people will never notice.
Not often we catch the Shadow Pokemon right away, usually knock out everything else while we weaken it, but this was a slight emergency. Also, Sassy is, uh, +SpDef -Spd. That's fine too, Flaaffy won't need Speed, though we've gotta watch out for Earthquake.
Okay this is getting a little silly, but it's not a tough fight, so okay. I forgot Umbreon was about to level up, but hey, maybe we'll see him again?
Did you know? If a POKEMON goes into HYPER MODE, CALL its name, and its head will snap back into reality.
We won't ever stay in this hotel again.
Alright, it's nearly halfway through the update, let's finally move more than five feet of where we started.
Do I look little to you boy?
Ooh it's my baby, good shit.
I picked a bad time to switch to Bayleef. At least Azurill ain't doing shit.
Slugma, 190 catch rate (62%, medium health, Pokeball), starting moves: Flamethrower, Rock Throw, Yawn, Shadow Rush/Sunny Day
This slow slug starts off with some pretty good moves and is a great Fire Blast user, but its low stats really let it down until it evolves and they become ever so slightly better. Having high Defense as Magcargo won't work too well in a game where Earthquake are pretty frequent, not to mention Surf, so Protect is a super good idea for this mon. You won't be getting Rock Slide until the end of the game, but with such a low attack, it's not a big deal, just hit hard with Fire attacks and, uh, maybe set up screens? Yeah, there's not a lot of options, but I guess you could use Yawn. Quilava just works better due to being a lot faster, but they're overall pretty similar, so if you need something to go last in literally every battle, hey, this is for you.
It's a little bundle of joy.
And it's gone, to be replaced by another bundle of joy.
I swear Hyper Mode is not usually this common.
Still, getting down to two gauges nets us another move. Finally, some STAB.
Okay, we done with Shadow Pokemon for the moment? The game loves having a gap, then shoving ten in your face.
Finally, the Colosseum. Cause there's nowhere else to go.
And it's not just once either. It was the time before, and the time before that, too! If I wasn't a guy, I could cry... Hey! I know what to do. I'll go ask PYRITE's MOTHER. I'll ask her when I'll finally win that challenge!
Oh, sheesh, what am I saying? You have to keep that a secret! Pretend you never heard me, okay?
THOMAS! Wasn't CAIL that guy who was hanging around the town's entrance? We should ask him. He might know something.
We have a PC and a healing machine here, so screw that hotel. We'll be putting Shadow Pokemon in our party to walk round to slowly decrease their gauge, cause we won't be using them in battle. Also don't tell me we missed another Colosseum challenge?
I'm sorry, but the current challenge is already under way. Please wait for the next challenge's registration.
Okay, time to haul ass to the other side of town.
He seems pretty cool and aloof, what kinda Shadow Pokemon does he have?
Uhuh. This should be a piece of ca-
Damn my hubris!
Furret, 90 catch rate (50%, low health, Great Ball), starting moves: Strength, Quick Attack, Helping Hand, Shadow Rush/Iron Tail
While this furry tail doesn't have a lot of stats, it's an early game monster with alright Attack and STAB Strength to spam. It can also pick off foes and even do a lot of damage to Rock types. It's got a pretty wide movepool, but we've discussed the main TMs you won't be getting for a while and with Furret's low SpAtk, it can't really make use of it, aside from Return and Brick Break, which are probably best used on other mons. Just so I make sure I mentioned it, there are no HMs in Orre, so getting Strength is a pretty rare boon, as a lot of other Normal types won't be getting it. It'll be fine for the early game to smash through foes, but it'll get left behind pretty quickly, which is surprising considering how fast it is.
A quick Pokeball stops its rampage, which is weird, but I'll take it.
Espeon pain train, all aboard.
He came up with that fancy tough-sounding name, SHADOW POKEMON, but it was no big deal! You guys be careful, too. Don't be played for a sucker. That's about all they'll give you if you win at the COLOSSEUM.
SHADOW POKEMON? That's what it's called? A SHADOW POKEMON? That POKEMON with the black aura...
Hmm? Oh, uh, right, MEANWHILE...
We have already broken DUKING's spirit. We can do as we please at the COLOSSEUM without his meddling. We've been giving away SHADOW POKEMON on the sly to challenge winners for gathering data.
Good. The others also appear to be doing their parts to implement our plan. Our SHADOW POKEMON plan is falling into place quickly. The final phase is not far off.
Fuhohoho! This is perking up my spirit and body! Oh, I feel like dancing!
Save your dancing until our plan succeeds. I'm off.
I shall make my return to the cave where my darling POKEMON await my return! Let the music play!
I guess there's no choice but to take part in a battle challenge there!
Okay, let's head all the way back up to the Colosseum, no more interruptions.
OH WHAT NOW
He ripped out and ripped off one of the gears. The COLOSSEUM's going to be without power!
Huh?! But isn't SILVA DUKING's trusted lieutenent? What's his motive for doing this?
That's what I want to know. He was ranting about how the COLOSSEUM can just shut down or something. Sorry to worry you younglings. Thanks. I'll be fine now. But I need to ask for a favor. Will you hear me out? If the COLOSSEUM loses power, the whole town suffers. I need you to find that GEAR SILVA ran off with. I'm counting on you younglings!
No, that can't be right... SILVA would never betray DUKING.
There's big trouble! The COLOSSEUM must be in an uproar by now without any power!
Hmm, DUKING doesn't know anything, but what else do we have to go on?
Do you know where the Gear is? Fateen has the same dialogue as when we first met her, so she's pretty unhelpful. I suppose I could talk to some NPCs, one of whom will mention seeing Silva run out of town, but really, that's all you get.
But here we go, it's at the empty lot from earlier. Hope you didn't go searching all over for it! Still, walking around reduced our Pokemon's gauges enough that Bayleef got Body Slam and one gauge left and Flaaffy got Cotton Spore and two gauges left.
Good. That's good... but SILVA... this is an outrage...
No, no. I reckon he agonized over this and did it because he thought it right. I can't blame the man for that. Enough about that, DUKING. Instead, I think you should look over there.
Th-That's the GEAR! You found it for us? What amazing luck! I'll ask you to excuse me for my behavior earlier. You seem to be people who are worthy of trust. You have my sincere thanks.
All right. I'll get you to slot that GEAR snugly back in that gap where it belongs.
Well it was nice having a Key Item for a minute.
Wahaha! This is the way it ought to be. Things are fine now.
I need you to win the knockout challenge and find out what is going on there. I can tell from a glance that you're no ordinary trainer. I know you can win! I'm sorry, but help me.
Alright, we can finally enter our first Colosseum! Only took until nearly the end of the third update.
Okay! Will you be entering with the POKEMON that you have in your party now? I hope you give it your best and aim for victory.
Now this is what we've been waiting for.
Colosseum battles are what you'd expect, we get healed after each battle and we need to beat four in a row without losing. However, we will get a cash prize for winning as well as get experience from the Pokemon we fight, so it's definitely worth battling.
Pretty simple first fight, as you'd expect.
Every battle has a different, so for Colosseum battles, I'll use the music from the semi-final that we won't find anywhere else, the other three rounds are used in other battles. First round is the standard Trainer Battle, second round is the Cipher Battle theme.
Dunno what Hidden Power that was but it didn't do much, so I assume a special type. Body Slam is pretty good, but unless you're going for the paralysis chance, then Shadow Rush does more.
Even though we've seen a few of these mons pretty recently in Emerald, just seeing them in 3D is so refreshing.
They've got more than 3 Pokemon now! Could be tricky.
Synchronize can be so good. To show how optimised this game is, whenever Quick Attack is used, the afterimages make the game lag itself.
Alright, last battle. What crazy creatures have we got?
Now when was the last time you saw these two Pokemon together?
Razor Leaf is doing alright, good way to pick off the weakened Pokemon that Espeon barely can't OHKO.
Espeon should be used in nearly every battle because he starts off lower levelled than everything and will need to catch up. Yes, even now.
Ah, Magnemite, and Steel types in general, are gonna be a bit rough to face. Right now, we only have Shadow Rush as our only move that does normal damage to it.
That helps a lot though, but something we can't rely on. We'll need to get some more team members.
Now that's an explosive last mon to face. But if it only chucks Presents, it won't be a problem.
Bayleef finishes us off and now has an empty gauge! Colosseum battles are nice since you're sending out your Shadow Pokemon four times quickly, decreasing its gauge by quite an amount. Oh, Bayleef is still a Shadow Pokemon? Well, it's gonna be a little bit longer before we can do something about that.
And, as a victory prize, please also accept this TM06! We'll be looking forward to your next entry.
I'm sorry, but the current challenge is already under way. Please wait for this next challenge's registration.
Damn that was quick, but at least we got a good TM out of it. I'll probably give it to Bayleef, but Shadow Pokemon can't be given TMs, so he'll have to wait.
MIROR B., the town's true mover and shaker, wishes you to have a gorgeous gift. Now, follow me.
Next time, we're gonna get a prize! Ooh I hope it's speedy!