Poison types of Generation 2 - winstein's Review
by, 8th January 2011 at 09:34 PM (2513 Views)
From Generation 2 onwards, there are very few additions of Poison-types each Generation, meaning the heyday of Poison-types are over and are now rarer than they were. In fact, the future games usually use Poison-types from the 1st Generation to spruce up the variety of Poison-types in those games. With that introduction out of the way, we shall get to the 4 different Poison-type Pokémon that’s shall be reviewed today.
Spinarak and Ariados
(Looks green, huh? Gold and Silver gave Spinarak a purple hue, and I am not talking about the shiny form either)
First things first: spiders have a reputation of being repulsive insects and subjected to hate, because they looked fearsome and eats other insects, and their faces are usually not a pretty sight to many. OK, spiders aren’t really insects but are arachnids, but they are usually classed as insects anyway. Considering Spinarak and Ariados' ability to breed with insects that would be prey, this would be...interesting.
Both Spinarak and Ariados have patterns on their back resembling faces. Usually I can see this as a feature on winged insects, but on spiders' backs it looks very funny, especially when the faces don’t look the bit threatening. If you look at Spinarak's back, you see a face, but for Ariados, he/she has a less obvious face on the back. I am not sure what the purpose of this feature is for exactly, because it didn’t occur to me that spiders need patterns to scare off predators, especially when one is venomous. However, Spinarak's face is able to change expressions. In battle, you see a sad face when facing Spinarak, but a happy face when he/she's yours. The meaning behind this must be that Spinarak simply wants company, assuming the face translates Spinarak's mood.
There are non-venomous spiders in the world, and there are that are venomous. The venom works both as an offensive tool as well as a defensive one. Prey will be weakened by a poisonous bite so that they can be captured and eaten, while threats will be neutered to allow the spider to escape. I imagine both Spinarak and Ariados work like this. In fact, you can see their horns on their head, which I can see as a tool of venom. On Ariados, it makes it look like a unicorn spider, which I guess is an insult if Ariados knows what a unicorn is (*glances at Rapidash*). A common feature among some poisonous frogs are that they are colourful, which I somehow associate with Spinarak and Ariados' colourful feature, even though they are not actually frogs. Ariados' pattern also reminds me of some mosquitoes' striped pattern. In fact, I feel that Ariados looks a bit like a mosquito, but that's just me. As said before, their back faces (Spinarak especially) also act as a defence mechanism, and they can even learn Scary Face too.
I seem to see Ariados as a ninja Pokémon, based on the moves he/she learns. Firstly is Baton Passing. I interpreted this as the ninja’s ability to use a scroll to transform, which is similar to the way Baton Pass works, with the temporary buffs and debuffs intact. Another is his/her ambushing abilities. While he/she is slow, the fact that he/she can learn Shadow Sneak or Sucker Punch makes it seem so. The reason I see Ariados as a ninja is because the first time I saw it is when Koga used it in the Elite 4 battle.
Harley the Cacturne dresser has an Ariados which duelled out with May's Squirtle and later sabotaging May's appeal under James and Meowth's command. Another episode shows Ariados used by a ninja trainer called Tōkichi (which supports my theory that Ariados is a ninja Pokémon), in the same episode Aya, Koga's sister, returned. Ariados is also used by Forrester Franklin in "All in the Day's Wurmple", in the same episode Ash was taught about Double Battles.
There isn't much to talk about in terms of competitive battling for Ariados, actually. One thing they can do from the beginning is to use their signature move Spider Web, which is like Mean Look (traps opponents) except it has more PP. And then, using Baton Pass, Ariados can still trap the opponent and switch to another Pokémon to take care of the victim. This is the only noteworthy niche that Ariados has, but it seems to not work in Generation 5. But then, that doesn't mean it ends here! Ariados has decent Attack, and some moves to use with it, particularly Sludge Bomb (pre-Generation 4), Poison Jab, Night Slash, Shadow Sneak and Sucker Punch. Let's not forget that Ariados also has Disable and Toxic Spikes, which are very useful moves for the spider. However, Ariados is quite slow, with a Base Speed of 40. Still, Ariados can use Agility to somewhat remedy this fact. On Smogon, Ariados had a moment of popularity, thanks partly to the ability Insomnia (no Dark Void), priority moves (taking care of Deoxys-A and Deoxys-S) and ability to place Toxic Spikes.
Spinarak and Ariados are pretty decent Pokémon, though not exactly stellar, but as Generation 2 members, older fans see something special in them that I am not sure newer fans (count me in this group) sees.
5 toxins out of 10!
Let’s get this one out of the way first: It had been brought to my attention by someone that Crobat is indeed up for capture post-Elite 4 in Pokémon Black and White, which I said otherwise in the last Poison-type review.
One of the newest additions in Generation 2 is the happiness value each Pokémon will definitely have, and one way to utilise it is to base an evolution method around it, and Golbat was one of the lucky candidates to use it, introducing the newest and baddest Poison-type of the lot here: Crobat! It's kind of amazing too, because Zubats are quite common in caves, so you can have a potentially powerful Pokémon in your run should you have it. Bear in mind that you cannot actually obtain Crobat in FireRed and LeafGreen, because the game prevents the evolution from happening until the National Dex is obtained, which you can get by having 60 Pokémon in your PokéDex after becoming the Champion, which is a rather odd kind of prohibition. Crobat's name sounds like it is based on crows, but the "Cro-" in the name stands for "cross", which is odd because of the shortened word, and not to mention that message is clearer in some languages. Like I said in the previous review, Crobat’s probably part Poison because of the deadliness of vampire bats, even though they are not poisonous in real life.
Unlike his/her pre-evolutions, Crobat's colour scheme is an overhaul, with purple being the main colour. It's easy to mistake the bottom wings as two other feet, and even for those who see them as wings, it's easy to mistake that Crobat doesn’t have feet, which isn’t true, as Crobat's feet are sometimes seen, usually from behind the body. It also seems like a useful feature for hanging upside-down, because bats easily take flight when they are upside-down as opposed to standing upright. Another thing about Crobat is that he/she has a lot more teeth than Goblat (usually with the lower jaw seen) and has yellow sclera and red pupils, which comes off as formidable. Crobat also has two tiny fingers, which Zubat and Golbat lacked. Of course, like real bats, they are nocturnal. Looking at Crobat now, due to the drastic changes, I wondered if there are still grudges out there that evolutions must retain many characteristics from the predecessors...
Crobat's best characteristic is his/her wings, in which there are two pairs of them. It's said that Crobat can simply switch between each pair for long distance flights, which is something that cannot be done by the pre-evolutions. The flutter of the wings is also said to be silent, which is also true for real bats, I think. The wings are also said to enable Crobat to possess a quick flight, making Crobat seem like an aeroplane. From the evolution from Golbat, the legs turned to wings, as said in the entries, but whether or not it's true is anyone's guess, but my theory is that the legs indeed turned into wings, while at the same time growing two extra feet.
In Generation 2, Crobat was the fastest of the new Pokémon. However, an oddity that Crobat has is that his/her bulk is decent for a swift Pokémon, which is actually a rather odd combination. And even then, the offensive ability is also somewhat average too! So, we have a non-legendary Pokémon who is very fast with all around stats. This allows Crobat to apply different roles, which is even more evident in the future Generations.
Crobat's true potential isn't really seen in Generation 2, because there aren't many moves that Crobat can properly take advantage of. The Speed allows Crobat to stall the opponent with Toxic, as Speed is important in a job like this. In Generation 3, we have Choice Band to boost Crobat's offensive power, and that Speed is rarely matched without the existence of the Choice Scarf. Another tactic that can be used, though not really practical, is the Sleep Talk + Whirlwind tactic. While Whirlwind is a move that often go last, using it with Sleep Talk will let it have a normal priority, allowing it to go first most of the time thanks in part to Crobat's high Speed, which is a very good strategy with Entry Hazards. Sadly, nobody knows how many turns each Sleep will last, so as I said, it’s really impractical.
Generation 4 introduced Crobat to great things that Crobat loves. The first of them is Roost, meaning that Crobat is able to survive longer that he/she would have imagined. Another of them is Brave Bird, which is a strong attack from a pretty decent attacking type, meaning that Crobat's still able to do some damage if need be. Crobat also can learn Nasty Plot (through breeding), turning the average Special Attack to a respectable number, and the Special attacks that Crobat gets are decent as a Special Attacker, like Heat Wave, Sludge Bomb and Air Slash, in addition to Hidden Power, of course. Super Fang is another great move, because the speed with a potentially powerful move is not something walls will enjoy. Crobat's role as a weather starter is also highlighted, thanks to not being affected by flinch and being very fast to set up, not to mention the introduction of the Weather Stones to extend the weather duration. Generation 5 gave Crobat the ability Slip Through, which is a bit of an improvement, meaning that Crobat isn't thwarted by the Screens. There isn’t much new stuff Crobat got this Generation, though.
Crobat's a pretty cool Poison-type, because bats are awesome, and this one's also a very fast Pokémon, making him/her surprisingly useful in combat because of that. I wouldn’t say that Crobat's the best one out there, but he/she's definitely one of the best, because of both the sleek design and usefulness in combat, and I am a fan of surprises as in unexpected-looking evolutions in appearances. Still, how is Crobat in any way related to his/her pre-evolution in terms of happiness?
10 toxins out of 10!
Wrapping up the Poison-types of Generation 2 is the balloon fish itself Qwilfish. Yes, while it’s a standard in English to have the letter "U" accompany the letter "Q" for proper words, Qwilfish’s name seems to subvert this rule, because I guess "W" is a cooler letter. Did I mention that Qwilfish’s body make it look like the letter "Q" if you take into account the round body and tail?
Qwilfish is no doubt based on the porcupinefish or pufferfish, which are species of fish that takes in air or water to expand its spiky body to scare of predators and discouraging them to eat it when threatened, as the spikes on the body are poisonous itself and the body becomes too big for predators. Besides, the thorns are not so harmless themselves and Qwilfish can even discharge them. However, Qwilfish seems to be naturally inflated, despite the PokéDex correctly mirroring the facts of life by stating it requires water to inflate the body. Real pufferfish are also slow swimmers, which Qwilfish is also said to be, even though the Speed is actually decent for one, not to mention the ability Swift Swim.
In the anime, Qwilfish is used by Harrison in the episode "Dueling Heroes", whose name sounds similar to Qwilfish's Japanese name Harysen. It duelled against Misty's Corsola. Another appearance of Qwilfish is in the episode "Just Add Water" which was used by Dorian against Misty's Goldeen in the anime-only Coastline Gym. Qwilfish also makes an appearance in the Pokémon Adventures comics in the chapter "Querulous Qwilfish" (gotta love the alliteration here), where the Qwilfish are angered by the pollution caused by the accident from the construction of the Battle Tower. I didn't read it, but sounds like the Diglett and Dugtrio plot in the anime (correct me on this one).
Qwilfish is surprisingly useful to an extent, and as I put it, underrated. The best quality of Qwilfish is the ability to place Spikes, which he/she learns in every game, and also Toxic Spikes, which he/she got in Generation 4 onwards. Another quality is the ability Swift Swim, and with the average Speed, lets Qwilfish usually go first in the rain, which is another advantage, because besides placing Spikes, Qwilfish can also become an attacker. Qwilfish has a good Attack stat and Swords Dance (only in Generation 3's Move Tutor, unfortunately, even though it's a TM in Generation 4 and 5), allowing that role to be successful. However, the noteworthy Physical moves that Qwilfish got is not many, with Poison Jab, Sludge Bomb (Generation 2 and 3), Waterfall, Aqua Tail, Aqua Jet (can't use with Swords Dance) and Explosion, but it gets the job done. There are three noteworthy moves that Qwilfish learns that I think warrants attention: Thunder Wave, Destiny Bond, Pain Spilt and Minimise. Thunder Wave is self explanatory. Destiny Bond is a rather odd move for Qwilfish, but since he/she is on the side of frailty, this is a great surprise move to defeat the opponent provided they're slower. Pain Split is a Tutored Move, and Qwilfish’s lesser HP makes it a decent recovery move. Minimise is perhaps the best thing in the arsenal, because in Generation 5 it greatly raises Evasion, which becomes a great move, but unfortunately, the competitive battling community condemned this move. Generation 5 also introduced Qwilfish with the appropriate ability Intimidate, which is a boon to this fish’s abilities as a Spiker.
Qwilfish is a simple Pokémon with a simple origin, so I didn’t have much to review on this fish, but the animal that Qwilfish is based on is actually quite interesting too, due to their peculiar defensive technique.
6 toxins out of 10!
When doing this, one oddity I found out is that three of the members here are pink Shinies, which is a very funny sight, if you ask me. It would be nice if you can provide constructive feedback if you have any. Next time, we will look at the Poison-types of Generation 3, which aren't as abundant as the heyday either. I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I have writing them.
Thanks for reading.
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