The 6 Types of Pokémon Players
By Jordan Barbeau→ As most gamers know, Pokémon is one of the most successful video game franchises of all time. Not only have the video games thrived for 18 years and counting, but the series about adorable cock-fighting has grown into the TV, card game, and comic market, to name a few. While the quality of the series’ many different facets differs drastically, the quality of the main entries into the series has remained fairly constant (with that level being FUCKING AWESOME), in no small part attributed to the myriad of ways the game can be played. Regardless of your skill level or age, Pokémon can be enjoyed by anyone, albeit in very, very different ways. These include…
- The Rookie
You don’t know your Caterpies from your Combees. If someone put a gun to your head, you couldn’t even attempt to explain the difference between a Poké Ball and a Poké Flute. You know nothing about Pokémon, other than that “Pikachu” thing is actually pretty cute, despite being way more popular than you think it should be. So, you pick up a game. You don’t care which one, you just pick one up from GameStop that you’ve heard about on IGN recently. Upon starting the game, you’re instantly met with a decision: Grass, Fire, or Water? You don’t know any better. You don’t know the difference. You just pick the badass-looking one. As you progress through this kid-friendly RPG, you find that it’s a lot deeper and more complex than you ever would have thought. Stat progression? Hidden numeric values you’ve only heard about in hushed whispers among your friends? What in the hell are IVs, and why can’t you find them anywhere in the game? You think about this for a second. Then your Charmeleon evolves, and you discover your new favorite Pokémon. From then on, you just Fire Blast your way through the Elite Four.
- The Collector
More than likely a product of the ‘90s, one that grew up watching the cartoon, you took that slogan to heart, God damn it: “Gotta catch ‘em all!” Being a Pokémon master? Who cares? The Elite Four? Who the fuck are they? All you care about is that glorious, glorious sight: 100% Pokédex Completion. You pursue this goal with an almost reckless abandon. Provided you have the money, you have two GameBoys, two GameBoy Advances, two DSs, two 3DSs, and both (and, sometimes, all three) versions of every generation of Pokémon game. You sit in your room for hours on end, bastardizing the entire reason the social aspect of Pokémon exists, just so you can eventually look at your Pokédex, and go “Heh. Cool,” to yourself. Good for you, you crazy-ass hoarder.
- The Pokémon Master
It’s not good enough to simply beat your friends in a Link Battle every now and then. You have to fucking demolish them. You pour countless hours, more than any normal person would ever admit to spending, researching the best teams used by the pros. Then, you IV breed and EV train your way to Pokémon immortality. God forbid a game primarily targeted towards children be “fun”; you once ended a friendship because the ignorant son of a bitch didn’t know how many Attack EVs you get when you defeat a Machop. The “story” of the games, if you even call it that, matters to you about as much as your public image does. It just gets in the way of what really matters in Pokémon: absolute, utter domination of anyone stupid enough to enjoy their time with the games. Enjoy your flawless win/loss record while your friends vow never to play with you again. That is, if you even have any by the time all this is over.
- The “Gary Oak”
You pompous little shit. It’s not good enough that you have an unbeatable team, you had to go and catch every single Pokémon too, didn’t you? You are the most infuriating human being to ever throw a Poké Ball. Every single one of your Pokémon has the same smug look plastered on their fucking Lv. 100 faces that you do every time you win a battle. People hate you with such a fiery passion that, were it not for the fact that you have the ability to trade them any Pokémon they want, they would never speak to you again. You think you’re such hot shit, don’t you? Well, see if I ever give you another Link Battle win again, you insufferable, arrogant fuck.
God, fuck these guys.
- The One Who Plays the Wrong Way
You pick the Grass-Type starter. You catch every Pokémon you see, level it up a couple of levels, and then replace it with the next awesome-looking Pokémon you come across. Other than your starter (who has somehow managed to stay with you up to this point without getting replaced by a Luvdisc), every Pokémon on your team has barely cracked Lv. 40 when you attempt to tackle the Elite Four, mainly because you caught all of them in Victory Road. Hey, you’ve noticed that all the Pokémon you find in the wild have gotten progressively stronger as you’ve gone through the game, so logic dictates that the ones you find right before the “final bosses” have got to be the best ones, right? God love you, you just don’t know any better. It’s not your fault; maybe you’re just a little kid, maybe you don’t know anything about Pokémon and aren’t very good at video games to begin with, or maybe RPGs just aren’t your thing. Who knows. Either way, you haven’t learned the unspoken rule of Pokémon: if you can’t beat the Elite Four on your first try, you shouldn’t be playing Pokémon. Period.
- The Guy Who Actually Has Fun
You represent a minority in the Poké Community that is so comically small, you can’t even think of one other person who plays the games like you do. You get excited every time a new generation of games comes out, and you pick one of the two versions up the day they come out. You do enough research before they come out to know exactly what Pokémon you want to catch and train on your first playthrough, and you do just that. You’re not playing these games to catch all, at the time of this writing, 721 Pokémon. You’re not playing them because you have a pathological need to ruin the innocence of children and relationships with friends everywhere with your ungodly powerful team. You play Pokémon because, God damn it, they’re fun. You go through the game, beat the Elite Four, do all the post-game stuff, and you have a blast doing it.