Pokemon Black, Day 15

Last time on Pokemon Black, Dragonspiral Tower! Today on Pokemon Black, more Dragonspiral Tower!


Actually, no. First, leveling. Going to try to get them up to L35. Hopefully this won’t end up evolving them.

God dammit Deerling gets one level and it evolves. Sawsbuck.

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They migrate according to the seasons. People can tell the season by looking at Sawsbuck’s horns.

Fine, only up to L33

I’ll replace my deerling with…hm. I guess I don’t have an ice type, and my team’s pretty safe from fighting and fire types. Cubchoo.

Current Team:
PhotobucketKrokorok L37
PhotobucketTynamo L32
PhotobucketLitwick L36
PhotobucketMienfoo L36
PhotobucketWoobat L33
PhotobucketCubchoo L33

Tynamo is really sucking and can’t beat the audinos even when they’re softened up first. It won’t learn any of my electric TMs either. So I’m just giving it an exp share and moving on. I assume it’ll probably evolve soon, sucking usually precedes evolution.

Back to the tower now.

Huh, so, all the grunts just have one pokemon. That’s pretty easy. The third one says, If the king of Team Plasma rules the world, Trainers will disappear, and disputes will end. I’m not sure where that last part came from. Team Plasma really needs to work on a coherent mission statement.

Wait, there’s another one. And she’s got TWO, and they’re both weak liepard, and I feel like the game is just mocking me now.

Then the final one with THREE. Who are lower level than the rest.

Hm, and I found a dragon fang.

And now the next level. It’s a very pleasing series of circles with a simple puzzle that’s involves the jumping thing again. I solved it quickly but, perhaps because of how the whole area moves, it felt like it was actually some sort of accomplishment.

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Next level. Everything shakes and we get a giant jagged speech bubble from nowhere.

It’s shocking!!

Then in normal exposition mode: It sounds like something is on a rampage at the top of the tower!

Oh, and there’s some Plasma guys.

Giallo: It’s finally time. Our lord N will become the hero!

Then he notices me.

What?! Someone made it clear up here?!

Yeah, you know all those pokemon you’ve apparently been stealing? You should have maybe outfitted your guys with them instead of the same old set.

Now! Stop that Trainer! For our lord N!

And they swarm me.

Giallo: Everyone who isn’t Team Plasma is an enemy! Use all your powers to take them out!

Team Plasma: No one can interfere with Unova’s new dawn!

…but they fight me one on one. And they don’t have many pokemon individually, either. And the AI is still stupid. The only issue is I can’t heal between battles, and that’s nothing.

Team Plasma: Our king will create a new world.

And did I ever say I necessarily opposed that? Why can’t we just talk? You have many good points!

Anyway, I win and they all agree to let me go? And back away.

This is one of the things I wish people covered in fanfic. At the end of a pokemon battle, the trainer is still in perfect condition. There are only two reasons for them to get out of your way – because the battle was to determine if you should keep going, or because they fear that you’ll sic your pokemon on them next. I like that sort of tension – that we’re being “civilized” and resolving our disputes without violence toward humans, but that this could change at any moment.

And the sage guy is still standing there. Will he finally fight?

…nope, he just says N’s going to do it and I’ll lose my pokemon.

Up to the next level then.

There’s a very pretty cutscene. I’m not too pleased by the dragon’s design, though – it looks very humanoid, verging on man-in-a-rubber suit. Rather digimonish, and the humanoid tendencies of digimon were largely why I prefer pokemon aesthetically.

N: What do you think, Farla? How do you like the powerful form of the Pokemon who appears before and fights beside the hero that will lead the way to a new world?

Well, as I just said, kiiiiiiiinda humanoid.

Now, Zekrom and I will head to the Pokemon League and defeat the Champion!

That douchebag? Go for it. You need any items? Help? Cheerleader?

This will be the last of the Pokemon battles that hurt Pokemon so. A world for Pokemon alone… It’s finally going to be a reality.

…then Zekrom flies off?

If you want to stop me, you must become a hero as well!

N, I appreciate the thought, but you don’t need to give me tips on beating you. Just focus on what you need to do. You’ve got a big job ahead of you!

That’s right! When Zekrom’s counterpart, Reshiram, recognizes you, we will finally be even, and then you can try to stop us!

What’s adorable about N is he doesn’t come off as gloating and sarcastic here. It’s like he actually wants me to. This sort of makes sense – he thinks he’s right, so probably figures I’ll end up agreeing with him as I try to find the other pokemon.

Well, what will you do?

Well, I do want a super dragon. So I think I’ll go try to find it, but slowly enough yours will have time to eat Douchy McFlamehair.

My prediction… If the future that I see is true, you will meet Reshiram.

Ugh. Nintendo, prophesies don’t need to get into everything. It’s must more fun to succeed at something no one believes is possible than something that’s a foregone conclusion.

The Pokemon with you believe in you so strongly… Will you be the one who interferes with my formula for changing the world? If you want to protect the bonds between Pokemon and people, you must search for Reshiram!

This is interesting, especially considering my blank slate of a protagonist.

The fact my pokemon love me, and we’ll assume this is reciprocated, does not say anything about if N is right or not. Clearly, many of Team Plasma’s grunts are sincere about caring about their pokemon as well, yet their existence doesn’t convince N he’s wrong. Indeed, their existence doesn’t even convince the grunts themselves it’s wrong. And from the grunts holding the villain ball, we know that at least some people abuse pokemon, so there’s clearly a range from good to bad trainers.

So my character isn’t necessarily interested in protecting the bonds between all pokemon and all people. She could just not want to lose her own friends.

I mean – put it this way. If you could end all animal abuse tomorrow at the cost of never having a pet or even seeing an animal again, would you? I would. And plenty of people who didn’t care about animal abuse, especially those that are abusive, wouldn’t. But I think you could have plenty of people who care about their pets so incredibly much that they wouldn’t – the loss of their relationship would be too much.

So, my character may be doing this for personal reasons. And, going on the issue of things not being black and white, there really should be a third option – my character, in trying to save her own friendship with her pokemon, prevents N from separating all people and pokemon, but he still separates some.

Or, if we’re going with the fact that I really do think N makes a good point – my character gets it just so he can’t take my own pokemon away. Or maybe I have no opinion at all and I’ve only been following him around because he keeps threatening to take my pokemon, but I don’t care about the rest. So N runs roughshod over everyone else but I’m safe because I’ve got its equal and opposite.

Better than the usual selfless destined hero.

I’m sure it is waiting for you in the form of the Light Stone.

And the dragon swoops down and grabs him, and they fly away.

Then the boys show up.

Cheren: Farla, did you see what flew off just now?

Nothing important that definitely isn’t going to go eat the champion. Let’s go have cake.

Brycen: How could this happen?

Okay, I admit, in a perfect world he should be stopped more peacefully and not by getting bit in half by a dragon. But we have to work with what we’ve got! And right now what we’ve got is an asshole who runs around destroying promising trainers by filling them with self-doubt and monologuing at everyone, and he’s probably a pedo too. And he’s never given me a chance to battle him and kick his smug ass until people realize they shouldn’t listen to him. So if my choices are nothing or him getting eaten by a dragon, I go with the dragon.

Also, N makes very good points and I think you should ask yourselves why you, people who insist the most important thing is diversity of opinions, have a knee-jerk response to everything he says and insist that on this one subject, diversity is evil and only your own beliefs are right. Maybe things really will be better if he separates people from pokemon. I mean, he really is able to understand them, and so far, only my pokemon seem to have said anything to even make him pause. That suggests most trainers are a lot worse than you think! Including yourselves, I might add.

Cheren: Why? That was that guy N, right? Why was he with the legendary Pokemon?

Aren’t you listening? …no, fine, never mind, he was with the legendary pokemon because it convinced him to give up and not go after any champions and then rewrite our world. Let’s go eat cake.

He couldn’t really be the hero, could he?

Signs point to YES.

Also, did I hear him tell you to search for the other legendary Pokemon?

Uh…maybe…but you know, it’s very windy up here, you can’t be sure you really understood anything. Maybe it was all in your imagination.

Brycen: Calm down! First, we go back!

Right! For cake. Everything’s fine.

It’s more important to decide what to do next than analyze what just happened.

Yes. Let’s do a lot of thinking. Hey, you know, I bet we’ll all think best if you two talk quietly and I just go…over there…

…or you could lead me out of the tower I guess, that’s fine too.

Oh god, I have to listen to more people?!

Cedric: Astounding…

Why are we involving jerkface in the conversation?

Actually, looking at this it’s kind of depressing. There’s four other characters standing there. Three of them are guys, and both the adults are.

This is one of those subtle things that you don’t really notice most of the time – characters are just more likely to be male, so any time a group gets together, it’s going to be weighted in that direction.

What’s even the point of Cedric? I don’t see anything he’s done that Juniper couldn’t. Even his exposition on Dragonspiral Tower mentioned that his daughter was fascinated by the place, and she’s right behind us in the cave. She could have shown up with Bianca and taken his place in the plot.

I never would have imagined the legendary Dragon-type Pokemon would return now…

I was saying that I thought the idea of them actually taking this as a sign would be cool. You see glimmers of this here, in that they’re at least always referring to it as a legendary and Cheren mentions if this means N is the hero, but no one seems to actually go so far as to wonder if this means N actually has a mandate here.

Cheren: That guy called N… Team Plasma’s boss

KING

Talk about lord N properly!

apparently reawakened the legendary Pokemon. He told Farla to look for the other legendary Pokemon, then flew away…

Bianca: Huh? There are two legendary Dragon-type Pokemon?

Really, game? It’s not enough you made her storyline about how some people will just never succeed, she also gets the job of being ignorant so other people can explain?

???: Yes! Yes there are!

Ooh, I wonder if that’s Iris, she knew about stuff last

FUCK

Cedric: Why, if it isn’t Alder! It’s been a while! Have you been well?

I hope not. Why aren’t you inside Zekrom’s belly?

Alder: No time for chitchat!

Then shut up.

Those violent flashes of lightning that shot from the tower… That Pokemon has the power to destroy the world!

Oh, I’m sure N wouldn’t do that. The world has lots of pokemon in it. You, on the other hand…

If it’s on Team Plasma’s side

Yes, which actually raises an interesting point you should consider. A super powerful god pokemon agrees with Team Plasma about the whole pokemon thing. This isn’t like the fourth gen where the legendaries are getting beaten into submission. N didn’t do anything but talk to it to get it on his side.

and Team Plasma tells everyone to release their Pokemon… No matter whether it comes from fear or admiration… The world can’t help but change.

Dear god, I’m fighting for the status quo? Explicitly? You’re outright stating the enemy is change?

It will become a world where we are separated from Pokemon…

And maybe you should ask yourself why things got to the point where someone thinks the only way to protect pokemon is a mass restraining order. And a pokemon god agrees with him. You seem to be focusing all your energy on saying you don’t want this to happen instead of considering fixing what made people think this was necessary.

Cedric: Right…

“I don’t really give a shit about pokemon except for experiments, myself.”

Moreover, the boss of Team Plasma

KING DAMMIT

N, who reawakened Zekrom, apparently said to look for the other Pokemon, Reshiram.

Ah, no, let’s not rearrange the sentence that way. He said I should look, not that people in general should try it.

Alder: If I remember the myth, Zekrom’s powerful electricity, along with the other Pokemon, devastated ancient Unova in an instant. Even knowing that, N is still wanting to awaken the other?!

Okay first, “is still wanting”? What the hell Nintendo.

Second, not quite. He wants me to awaken it for my own sake, he can do everything he wants with just the one.

Bianca: H-huh?! Isn’t it dangerous to bring back a Pokemon that powerful?

Alder: Miss, you are a very kind person.

The word you’re looking for is “sane”, Douchy McFlamehair. But hey, condescend more, I’m sure it isn’t getting tallied up by everyone until when N comes down they all decide that they don’t need to help you quite that badly.

Still I don’t know if other Pokemon will be able to stand up to it. Because, no matter what, it is a legendary being… I don’t like the idea of taking orders from N

What an interesting coincidence. I don’t like the idea of taking orders from you.

but searching for the dragon–the stone–might not be a bad plan. We certainly can’t let Team Plasma reawaken both of them!

…Where did you get the idea they were trying to? N’s got what he wants. Well, half of it, you still need to hold still for Zekrom to eat you.

Since I’ve traveled all over Unova, I have an idea of where it might be.

God every word of his just sounds like such an asshole. He can’t just say he thinks he knows where it is, he has to bring up how he’s this awesome traveler first.

Let’s head to the Relic Castle! Farla, everyone, I’m going!

Finally.

Cedric: I see. We’ll leave that to you. I’m going to investigate inside the tower.

“It’s not likely there’s anything useful there, but my daughter’s always wanted to go inside and I enjoy showing her up. When she was younger, I used to buy toys just to play with them in front of her.”

Hopefully, I’ll find something.

Brycen: Then, I will go with you.

Anything to get rid of you. Speaking of which, Flamey, weren’t you saying something about going? Away? Well?

Cheren: I think I understand better now.

DAMMIT CHEREN DON’T TALK TO HIM IT’LL MAKE HIM STAY LONGER.

Being able to do something for Pokemon–for somebody at a time like this–is strength… I’m sure of it.

I agree, N does have a lot of strength of character.

And my strength is something that is given to me by Pokemon.

Yeah, that’s kind of where N’s issue comes from, among other things.

OK, Champion, let’s hurry!

…I don’t think you do understand.

Whatever, at least it got rid of them.

Bianca: Farla, this has turned into a big deal. So confusing…I dunno what to do…

I really, really hate Nintendo.

Are you gonna go to the Relic Castle, Farla?

Sorta was hoping the stone was somewhere else and I could avoid them, actually.

Past Route 4, in the Desert Resort… I hear that’s where the Relic Castle is…

More spoonfeeding by the game. It never ends, does it.

I mean, okay, the games could be obtuse. I never did figure out chunks of the endgame locations in the third gen, for example (should look up those). But there’s nothing wrong with someone looking around and exploring! And I mean, it’s on the map. People would figure it out.

Anyway, I guess that’s where I’m going next.

2 Comments

  1. Ember says:
    “I mean – put it this way. If you could end all animal abuse tomorrow at
    the cost of never having a pet or even seeing an animal again, would
    you?”

    Oh, wow…  Yeah, that is a really interesting and thorny ethical question at the heart of this story, and the way it gets glossed over is so frustrating. :(

    Your dialogue is delightful.

  2. purplekitte says:
    N is consistently the best part of Team Plasma, and even the game knows it, despite its efforts to have annoying people muddle things by talking nonsense. This is the problem: the game setting up a change vs. status quo scenario where the former faction has some legitimate points, then being completely unable to address those points because the player is forced to fight for the status quo side. I didn’t find the various things that happen in the ending to be terrible, but I still felt the strong need to write AUs of everyone deciding to take third options and stop avoiding the underlying issues.

    The cut scene effects in this section and at various points in the finale are very sweet too.

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