When the final evolutions of the three Alolan starter Pokémon were released, I was happy letting everything else in Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon stay secret, ready to be discovered through regular gameplay after Nov. 18. Of course, there was all the data mining, but like I’ve said before I have no desire to spoil every detail for myself like that.
Then, just over this past weekend, a few pages from this month’s CoroCoro magazine were leaked, showing off more details about some Ultra Beasts and signature Z-Moves for the three starter Pokémon. After that, I really should not have been surprised that we would be getting another video talking about those things in more detail. That’s exactly what we’ve gotten.
While it isn’t a lot of new detail, this is presumably the last dump of new official information we’re going to be getting pre-release, so I figure I should still talk about it. For old time’s sake, if nothing else. It really has been a hell of a journey these past few months, one that I’m sad to see go… But not sad enough to elongate the wait.
Seriously can the games just get released right now?
Like I said, a lot of this particular trailer rests upon the information we were shown from CoroCoro the other day, though focusing more on some things that were not shown as opposed to certain things that were shown. In the end, it also essentially outright calls itself out as the final trailer of this kind that we’re getting by having something of a recap of lots of game details just before the “go buy our game on November 18th” screen.
So, let’s dive into just what we see in this three and a half minute little gem.
Sinister Arrow Raid
Let me just start by saying that as cool as this Z-Move looks, I probably won’t be using it very often. I get the feeling Z-Moves might work better with other Pokémon I’m going to have on my squad, so I’ll probably find another item to give my Decidueye.
That said I would 100 percent totally disregard what I just said if I can continue to see the player character do the spooky boo dance over and over before it’s used. Honestly one of the greatest things I think I’ve ever witnessed in my 19 years on this planet.
At the moment, I don’t even know if that’s an exaggeration or not. I genuinely like it that much.
I also think it’s savage watching Decidueye fly in, strike the opponent and let a mob of arrow quills come after to strike and detonate. All while the owl looks smug and amazing as hell for an extended period of time.
Now my only question is whether or not Sinister Arrow Raid is solely Ghost-type, or if it could double apply for Grass-type attacks as well. I doubt it, but it would be pretty cool if the Z-Moves of the three starters had double type effectiveness like Hawlucha’s Flying Press technique.
Seriously I know I may be biased walking in, but I do really like this Z-Move. It’s not my favorite so far, but… I’ll get to that.
Malicious Moonsault is probably pretty phenomenal to see for any wrestling lovers out there. I am not personally a wrestling fan, or at least I haven’t seen enough to know whether or not I am a fan of the sport. The Z-Move doesn’t impress me all that much as a result and adds to my generally lukewarm reception of Incineroar as a whole. I like him way more than I thought I would, but still not enough to be super impressed by any means.
It is objectively cool seeing Incineroar surround himself with fire and blast into the stage like a nuclear bomb, however. That’s pretty rad. Plus watching the trainer command their Pokémon to attack is great in literally all of the Z-Moves presented here. The name also has a cool M alliteration though, so the translators are killing it with that.
As much as I love the trainer’s spooky boo dance for Decidueye’s Z-Move, compared to the kind of lackluster arm wave dance for Primarina’s Z-Move especially, Primarina’s special attack is easily the most characteristic of the Pokémon it exists for, and for that reason alone it is actually my favorite of the three.
Not only does Primarina’s Z-Move Oceanic Operetta have a great name (alliterative, just like Incineroar’s up there), it also displays her ability to create water balloons to attack far better than her signature move Sparkling Aria does in my opinion. At the same time, you get to see Primarina sing to create the watery orb which then gets sent over to the opponent’s side of the field like a Dragonball Z Spirit Bomb, only to let it explode with a strong musical note inspired by her trainer. Finally, rain comes down as a result of the blast to add dramatic flair as the Water-type bows.
It does admittedly seem a little silly that the opponent would stand still long enough to let the slow-moving ball of water float across the field, but it’s an impressive display nonetheless.
Long story short, best starter evolution Z-Move. A+ characterization and charm. Would use in-game.
The official Pokémon website also confirms some mechanical information about Z-Moves as a whole. According to the official site, not only does a Z-Move’s power level change depending on the original attack used for it (For example, Gigavolt Havoc utilized with Thunderbolt will be weaker than Gigavolt Havoc utilized with Thunder), but at the same time Z-Moves as a whole are powerful enough to break through Protect and Detect. That’s pretty insane, honestly. Even if the moves are one time use per battle, the fact that they’re unavoidable damage could throw a wrench in quite a few things.
Z-Moves will also apparently be usable in conjunction with status attacks like Thunder Wave. Instead of just being another variant of Gigavolt Havoc, or whatever corresponding type Z-Move would be used, the attack instead becomes a Z version of the status attack: Z-Thunder Wave for example. This new Z-Move will have the same effect as the original status attack, paralyzing an opponent for example, but it will also have an added bonus like raising your Pokémon’s stats or restoring HP at the same time.
Also, I just have to add, using Z-Splash increases your Pokémon’s attack by three stages if you look at the slideshow on the website. So you can have a Gyarados keep splash from the time it’s a Magikarp and just instantly gain the attack benefits of three turns using Dragon Dance. Granted you don’t get the speed boost at the same time, but still. That’s a thing now.
Thanks Game Freak.
Two Ultra Beasts were introduced in this final Sun and Moon trailer, though to be totally honest we didn’t learn a lot about them.
This is UB-03 Lightning. Hope you like his design, because that’s about all we know about this creepy dude. Seriously there’s absolutely nothing else about him on the official Pokémon website. Just his name. So weird.
I guess I can talk about how strange it is that we have a (Pokémon? Beast?) literally based on exposed wires with a humanoid body and a tail that looks like a third leg but… Really that’s the extent of it. Also he’s probably Electric-type. So there’s that?
UB-05 Gluttony at least has a little more meat on his bones to work with. Pun fully intended.
According to the official Pokémon website: “This beast has an astounding appetite, and it will completely devour anything in front of its eyes. It’s said that it devours not only objects, but the ground, rivers, and even the seas! Despite the abnormal amounts that this beast consumes, it’s said that it doesn’t produce any waste products. It’s possible that it’s completely converting everything it eats into energy to sustain itself, but the true details remain unknown.”
Now this guy… Wow. Okay. Besides looking like a bumblebee-colored Ultimate Chimera from EarthBound, I’m not sure what to say about it. I’m admittedly digging the demon vibe with the sharp teeth, bat wings, mace tail and endless maw. At the same time, it kind of creeps me out thinking that I’m just going to come across this thing in-game somewhere.
These Ultra Beasts are honestly just turning into nightmare fuel more and more as time goes on. Why couldn’t we have seen the cool looking samurai Ultra Beast in this video? Why did it have to be the eerie endless stomach hoping to fill up on the Earth’s landscapes to continue energizing itself in some strange unknown power source.
Not looking forward to fighting him. Or the exposed wire guy. But I am looking forward to seeing how they fit into the storyline of the games, especially with the Aether Foundation versus Team Skull.
Alolan Diglett and Dugtrio
Capping off the last of the Alolan form Pokémon we’ll officially hear about before the big Sun and Moon drop on Friday is Diglett and Dugtrio. The two Ground-types are fairly popular from what I can tell, considering both the local named after them in Kanto and the hordes of memes online about what’s hiding under the dirt.
Also yes, Alolan Dugtrio is in the Special Demo version. I know. We don’t really have to bring it up because it wasn’t all that significant a portion. Alright? Alright.
The new versions of these two may just look like they gained a head of hair in Alola, but the hair is actually much more complex in its nature. The Alolan Digletts and Dugtrio are now Ground/Steel-type Pokémon that can have the abilities Sand Veil or Tangling Hair.
Tangling Hair may technically be a brand new ability, but it actually replicates the effects of Generation 6 pseudo-legendary Goodra’s signature ability Gooey. Gooey, and Tangling Hair by extension, lowers the speed of any directly attacking Pokémon by one stage.
Now for the last installment of my favorite part of looking at new Alolan Forms.
According to their descriptions from the official Pokémon website:
Diglett: “Diglett in the Alola region live near volcanic areas, so they have few places to hide themselves away. Their tunneling activity plows the land, creating cultivated soil that’s great for agriculture. Because of this, many people in the Alola region are grateful for the presence of Diglett. The hairlike growths sprouting from Diglett’s head are metallic whiskers. It’s said they developed these stiff yet flexible whiskers in order to survive in the hostile volcanic environment. The whiskers provide a sensory function, enabling Alolan Diglett to scan the surrounding area without exposing their faces aboveground. Their current emotional state is revealed by their whiskers. When their whiskers stand straight up, they’re angry. Whiskers that wave are a sign that the Pokémon is on alert. When they swing their whiskers around, they’re in a good mood, and when their whiskers droop, they’re feeling lonely or downhearted.”
Dugtrio: “In the Alola region, Dugtrio is revered as an incarnation of the god of the land, and it’s treated with great importance. This is why the people of Alola fall to their knees and bow deeply whenever they come across an Alolan Dugtrio that has poked its faces out of its burrow. Alolan Dugtrio’s whiskers shine with a brilliance akin to golden hair. The whiskers are flexible, just like Diglett’s, but hard and strong. They continue to grow throughout an Alolan Dugtrio’s life, although at a very slow rate. Removing Alolan Dugtrio whiskers from the Alola region is prohibited. It’s said that those who take them receive divine punishment. Every year, many tourists come back, apparently to return whiskers they had taken. There is a superstitious belief that many Alolan Dugtrio come out of their holes on a day when a volcano will erupt. Older residents of Alola will flee immediately at the sight. It’s thought that Alolan Dugtrio, which live beneath the ground’s surface, detect movements in the ground that indicate an impending eruption and are so alarmed that they come aboveground.”
Reading the explanations for why the Pokémon Company made the decisions they did in terms of changing Kanto Pokémon for Alola has honestly been one of the best parts of the lead-up to the games in my opinion. With the exception of a few (cough Persian and Raichu cough), I’ve had fun reading into all the explanations. They have been interesting and actually insightful glimpses into how Darwinian evolution and adaptive species apply realistic logic into the Pokémon world.
In terms of Alolan Diglett and Dugtrio, that means we have a reasonable explanation as to why the Generation 1 moles have surfer hair. Go figure that one out.
While I do admittedly think it’s a bit of a stretch to play off what was clearly a desire to put groovy surfer hair on Dugtrio with the “metallic sensory whiskers” argument, I do like the idea of the whiskers as a whole. The fact that they would have adapted to feel seismic activity more acutely as a means of avoiding burrowing straight into lava or magma is pretty awesome.
I don’t like the fact that we’ve added a Ground-type weakness to a pretty solid Ground-type Pokémon, but if Excadrill is any indication then these two should be just fine.
Oh also they are apparently believed to be an incarnation of Landorus. So they have that going for them.
Unless you’re interested in learning more about the promotional Pokémon that are going to be coming out with the games (which you can see here), that’s all this final Sun and Moon pre-release trailer had to offer. Personally, I feel like it would have been more exciting to end things off with the big Decidueye, Incineroar and Primarina reveal, but that’s just me.
The Z-Moves were also an interesting note to end things on though, as they’re pretty cool to watch in action. Which one was your favorite?
How about Alolan Diglett and Dugtrio? How do you feel they stack up to the other Alolan forms we’ve been introduced to thus far? In fact, same question for the Ultra Beasts? Are you down with UB-03 and 05? I know I’m not, but that doesn’t mean my word is law by any means.
Oh, also, how do you feel about my trying to color coordinate certain lines in my posts? I figure if nothing else, the three starters and the other informational quotes would be a good place to try the system out.
And finally, since this is the very last Sun and Moon pre-release information post I’m going to be making, let me know in the comments below what your favorite reveal in the lead up to the games has been. Or, just let me know what you’re most excited about in general. I know there’s plenty I can ramble on about myself, but I think I’ve done that more than enough for one day.
There will be plenty more of that very soon, I can assure you all.