New Sun and Moon Information: Team Skull?

It’s always a good day when we get some new Pokémon news, if you ask me.  Even though we’re still pretty fresh off the heels of the absolutely huge update that came about a week ago, CoroCoro Magazine has had some more new stuff leaked from their upcoming issue.  I might be a little late to the party this time, but there’s still some interesting stuff to talk about, so I’ll do just that!

Among the new goodies this time around we have some new Pokémon for Gen 7, some new Alolan form Pokémon and even the first bits of information about the villainous team that’ll be plaguing Alola with their plans to do… Whatever they’re going to do.  We don’t know too much yet.

Either way, there’s four images that were leaked and each of them has different stuff to show, so I figured I’d run though them one by one.

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Image Courtesy of Serebii.net

First up, a brand new Water-type to fill the waters around our tropical island region.  As usual with these leaks, we only really have the Japanese names of these Pokémon, so it’s subject to possible change in English when we get the official trailer release.  That being said this guy’s name is Yowashi, and the only real significant thing about it Serebii can confirm is that the larger Pokémon in the image isn’t an evolution, but a form change.

Yes, Yowashi has a School Form based on the concept of a school of fish that gather together in an underwater cluster.  What I like about this concept is that instead of just making a generic cloud of fish, the designers went the extra mile to have it so all the fish would form a giant submarine-like shark.  It could just be a giant version of Yowashi, but between the sharper, larger fins and bigger teeth, I feel like they form a shark in the School Form.

This Pokémon is kind of awesome just in that I had no idea the shark was a collective being at first.  I simply thought Yowashi evolved into a bioluminescent submarine when I first saw the picture (which is admittedly also an awesome idea). The glowing eyes of the fish that make up the eyes were like bolts or screws on the submarine, suggesting a Water/Steel-typing evolution in my head.  While it likely won’t follow this path in reality, I think the truth of the matter is almost cooler.  The fact that the fish together make such an imposing form is great, and depending on how Yowashi’s ability allows the transformation, there’s plenty of potential for this guy to be a great addition both in appearance and in competitive usefulness.


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Image Courtesy of Serebii.net

Alright.  Okay.  Let’s address the elephant in the room.  Sand Castle Pokémon.  Lots and lots of people like to complain that new generations of Pokémon are ‘running out of ideas’ because they have things like ice cream cones and keychains becoming Pokémon.  I wholeheartedly disagree with that sentiment for a variety of reasons, reasons I won’t get into here for the sake of focusing on the topic at hand.  I just felt like I’d bring it up to say that I generally enjoy every Pokémon’s design from their lore-based and contextual stances.  There are Pokémon I don’t like, but it’s not because they’re lazy or uninspired inanimate objects and ideas.

With that out of the way, I really, really like these sand castles.  The smaller pre-evolution is currently called Sunabaa, while the much more impressive evolved form is called Shirodesuna.  Both are Ground/Ghost-types with currently unknown abilities, though I’d wager Arena Trap is a good bet.  According to the information we have, Sunabaa is a grudge that dwells within a pile of sand, becoming a Pokémon, while Shirodesuna captures other Pokémon and steals their life force, with the captured Pokémon’s grudges becoming new Sunabaa in turn.  At the top right of Shirodesuna in the image, you can see a Pikachu getting absorbed to fit with this idea.

So first of all, design.  Yes.  It’s freaking adorable to me how Shirodesuna’s mouth is always open in such a way that it looks like it’s constantly yelling to get people’s attention.  Plus, it reminds me of the Taj Mahal, which is pretty awesome.  Second, Ground/Ghost is a pretty sweet typing in my experience, as Golurk has always been one of my favorite Unovan Pokémon since I first played White version way back when.  If Mimikyu wasn’t already my perfect Ghost-type cuddle buddy, I’d be pretty happy to pick up a Shirodesuna for my team.  Third, that lore though.  Ghost Pokémon always have strange quirks here and there that make them creepy or stand out, like Phantump being the spirit of children who got lost and died in forests, but the idea of a sand castle absorbing things deep underground to take their life is pretty high up there in the screwy Pokémon meter.  And I love it.

In the image there’s also another new Pokémon: Nuikoguma, Bewear’s pre-evolution.  I’ll be honest, I’m already not a huge fan of Bewear compared to some of the other Pokémon we’ve seen coming for Sun and Moon, so I don’t have a lot to say about Nuikoguma either. It’s cute, and there’s a funny disconnect between its hatred of being touched and Bewear’s desire to hug everyone, but otherwise I don’t have all that much else.  The fact that Bewear is an evolution probably suggests something different about its stats compared to if it were a stand-alone Pokémon, but I don’t know enough about the math to be able to say anything about it.


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Image Courtesy of Serebii.net

While Alolan Exeggutor is front and center on this page, he’s definitely not the most interesting thing about it.  Well, okay, he arguably is considering… He’s Alolan Exeggutor.  But, what I’m saying is, there’s a few new Alolan Forms showcased here that we haven’t seen before.

As I predicted last week – though I admittedly wasn’t the only one who picked up on the clues – Marowak  has an Alolan form, and it’s a Ghost/Fire-type.  While the Ghost-typing is a bit more of a surprise, the Fire-typing was pretty obviously hinted at due to Marowak’s connection with the Fire-type Trial Captain, Kiawe.  According to the information we have now, Marowak evolved in response to predators in the Alolan region, changing it’s typing to be able to fend them off easier.  With the prevalence of Ice-types we can see just through the Alolan forms of the Vulpix and Sandshrew lines, it’d make sense for a Fire-type deviant to emerge.

We also now know that Meowth will have an Alolan form in Sun and Moon, a Dark-type variant that looks incredibly sassy and was bred to be that way by the royal family of Alola.  Given most people tend to associate Meowth and Persian with Dark-typing anyway, it’s a very sensible and straight-forward change, but like Marowak, its origins and general being do bring up some interesting thoughts and questions.

As far as Alolan Marowak goes, it’s honestly really good looking and seems to make a lot of sense in the context of the game.  Being associated with dancing thanks to Kiawe, the double sided flaming stick he carries is a definitely strong reminder of the kind of fire-twirler usually associated with Luaus and other Hawaiian festivities in my experience. Also, Phoebe better get a cameo in this game.  I mean come on, the fire-twirling Ghost-type Pokémon from Hawaii – if that doesn’t scream some involvement with Hoenn’s Elite Four ghost trainer, I don’t know what does.  Alolan Meowth brings another interesting dimension to the evolutionary concepts behind Alolan forms in that it’s not only a natural process, but a process humans can influence as well.  Much like dog breeding in the real world, Pokémon can theoretically be bred however we might want.

The other interesting thing about the Meowth lore is the fact that it brings up a royal family.  Royalty has been toyed around with in Pokémon before through mentions of an old royalty in Kalos and of things like the theoretical kingdom Ghetsis wanted to create in Unova, but from the information we have now it does seem like Alola will have a currently sitting royal family of sorts.  How will those royals fit into the story if they appear?  And more importantly, how will they tie into the levels of power in the region?  Will they essentially be the Elite Four after you defeat all of the Kahuna on each island?  Who knows.


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Image Courtesy of Serebii.net

Now, Rockruff may seem like the headlining act here, taking up at least half the page.  However, he doesn’t get all too much more information revealed other than a teaser talking about his “secret evolution” that’s set to be revealed in a poster in the next CoroCoro issue.  I’m curious to know whether they mean secret evolution as in something totally new as a means of evolving, or if they mean secret evolution as in, they’ve just kept his evolution line secret up to this point and will now reveal it, but either way there’s not too much exciting there all together.

What is exciting happens to be in the bottom right corner of the image, where we finally get to see the first images of our rival villainous organization in Pokémon Sun and Moon: Team Skull.  Personally, I was a very strong advocate for a Team Eclipse considering the interstellar nature of the legendaries and the game names, so there’s a bit of a ‘missed opportunity’ vibe resonating in my heart.  However, that doesn’t mean Team Skull is a bad thing by any means.

Guzma (the man with the Doc Brown hair, wacky glasses and skull-themed gold chain) is Team Skull’s leader, while the girl who looks like a Punk Girl from Kalos is called Plumeri.  Her role is currently unconfirmed, but she’s probably an Admin let’s be honest.  We also get to see the male and female grunts, both of whom are wearing all black, have cloth covering their mouths, and are wearing bandanas that are designed like skull caps.

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Plumeri (left) and Guzma (right), the top members of Sun and Moon’s Team Skull.  Image Courtesy of heavy.com

If nothing else, I love the theming of this new antagonist team.  Every member has the same skull insignia, which looks like a sideways “S” in the shape of eyes with some teeth underneath, somewhere on their person.  It’s a very cartoony representation of a skull and it looks really sweet for a team insignia.  They also give off a very punk-centric pirate vibe, bringing to mind both the organized crime syndicates of Team Rocket and Team Plasma as well as the oceanic theming of Team Aqua, something which works well considering Alola is a series of islands.  Guzma looks pretty smug more than anything, though I can see the evil intent in his gaze.  While we have no idea what Team Skull’s plans are considering we just have this teaser along to judge them off of, I’m hoping they step it up as far as team villains go.  Pokémon villains tend to fluctuate, with people like Cyrus and Ghetsis standing tall as really overbearing and overwhelmingly evil villains and others like Lysandre falling just a bit shorter in my mind.  Also yes, those are just opinions – and I’m not saying Lysandre’s plans weren’t really evil and on the more screwed up side, but his execution and personality weren’t quite as strong for me.

But that’s enough on that, since I’d rather not back myself into any holes I can’t dig myself back out of.  Long story short, Team Skull is cool looking and they’ve got some potential.  Hopefully they even emulate Team Skull from the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series in some way, since it’d be a pretty sweet reference in my opinion.

Oh also, I’m not giving up on what should be their ultimate evil plan.  I’m just not.  Eclipse or not, this better be it Game Freak.


That’s all for now, folks.  All and all we got some interesting developments with this leak, and supposedly the next official Pokémon announcement will be coming on the 12th, at which point I assume we’ll find out more about these guys and potentially others.  While it wasn’t exactly as overwhelmingly huge as the information dump we say on the 1st, this update added some pretty great stuff to our growing Pokémon lexicon and did so in a much more easily digestible chunk.

What do you guys think of this update?  Do you like the new Pokémon?  How do you feel the royal family of Alola, as mentioned in Alolan Meowth’s information, will play into the games?  What do you think about Team Skull?  What will their goals and aspirations be in your opinion?

Let me know what you have to say, bolstering any and all debate is a pretty big reason behind why I’ve been blathering on about these Pokémon updates for so long, and I’d love to hear any and all opinions and ideas I can!

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