History of Pokémon fan speculation

Codraroll

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Approved by myself and DHR. The twofold purpose of this thread is to entertain by sharing funny old stories, and warn future speculators of the follies of the past.

I initially wanted to make this thread a couple of weeks ago, but then forgot about it. Figured I'd give it another try today. The idea was sparked by the seemingly ubiquitous expectations of "Pokémon Stars", a supposed new Switch game in the core Pokémon series that would take players back to Alola with updated graphics and a new story and whatnot. As we all know, the predictions failed to materialize; instead we got another pair of games for the 3DS, albeit featuring a return to Alola.

In other words, the common expectations were wrong. And it got me thinking... what else have we been wrong about before? Because as every long-time Pokémon fan can attest to, swirling rumours about the franchise's future have always been around, and we've all encountered seemingly rock-solid predictions that failed to deliver.

The obvious other example is the infamous "Pokémon Z". A third game in Kalos that would expand on Zygarde's backstory and give it a greater role in the game's main story, akin to the treatment received by Kyurem, Giratina, Rayquaza, Suicune, and... eh... Pikachu before it. However, Game Freak seemingly had other plans, and Zygarde's epic quest took place in Sun and Moon instead. That being said, there's credible evidence that those plans were changed at the last minute, and that Pokémon Z really was planned before being hastily cancelled.

Another examle I remember particularly vividly was the widespread idea that the new Kyurem formes in B2W2 would have an ability that cancelled out the charge turn of Ice Burn/Freeze Shock, which had been discovered prior and (correctly) assumed to be the Kyurem formes' signature moves. The facts that no ability had ever been created mid-generation before, and that the moves probably wouldn't have had a charge turn in the first place if their designated sole users would have an ability cancelling it, were repeatedly disregarded.


So, what rumours and speculations do you remember from ages past, when we were waiting for new Pokémon games? What predictions convinced you back in the day? Was there anything you - or the persistent rumour you subscribed to - predicted correctly?
 

Bull Of Heaven

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Seconding the one above. I didn't think the UBs would turn out to be Pokemon at all, and was a little disappointed when they did. The early announcements made them sound like something entirely different.

Also, wow, I never noticed the slight resemblance between Guzma and Xurkitree. The version I heard at the time was Guzma = Buzzwole, and I never saw it.

Anyway:

There will be no Mega Evolution whatsoever in SuMo (I didn't want to believe this one but it seemed fairly credible).

Solgaleo is definitely a Fire-type.

The Aether Foundation are secret bad guys (somewhat true), and Team Skull are secret good guys, or at least opposed to whatever evil stuff Aether is doing (false).

And here's a small personal one: I made a token effort to avoid new Pokemon spoilers, did very badly at it, and ended up with fragmented and incomplete information. When I saw the name "Bewear," I assumed that it was a play on the words "beware" and "wear" (as in: "to wear a disguise"), and thought for a while that it was the name of "the spooky-ass Pikachu" (i.e. Mimikyu).
 
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Well, you have of course the famous Ultra Beasts are humans (and even known characters see the image) rumour which caused many people to believe that UBs would not be catchable but instead would be boss fights or something
View attachment 84113
Clearly Kartana is Edward Scizorhands.

Now, given that B2W2 was mentioned, I remember the huge amount of speculation on the Kyurem formes' types, whether they'd be Dragon/Ice or Dragon/Fire and Dragon/Electric (or even pure Dragon). Given their characteristics and a certain ability that was introduced two generations later, I wonder if a Steelworker equivalent would fit them.
 
I remember some speculation before I took interest in the franchise that focused on the starters. A fake leak by purplekecleon (now glitchedpuppet) depicted a trio of Fighting, Psychic, and Dark starters. Instead, we received Turtwig, Chimchar, and Piplup back in August 2006; the core trio retained the Grass, Fire, and Water cycle that we still know and love today. (If I were interested in Pokémon at the time, I would have believed everything shown until anything was debunked because I was only eight years old and in 3rd grade at the time.)
 
I remember when FireRed and LeafGreen came out there was a lot of speculation about the existence of ThunderYellow (or, less commonly, AquaBlue). This one was propagated by both the kids I knew in school and some people on the forums I used to frequent at the time.

This one is probably the biggest one I remember, but there were certainly others.
 
Less of a rumour more, a one day hype and die. I vaguely remember Serebii or somewhere semi credible announcing that GF had copyrighted Delta Emerald about two weeks before ORAS was released. For me this was a huge hype but then dashed as it got lost in the hype for the ORAS release.
 
Less of a rumour more, a one day hype and die. I vaguely remember Serebii or somewhere semi credible announcing that GF had copyrighted Delta Emerald about two weeks before ORAS was released. For me this was a huge hype but then dashed as it got lost in the hype for the ORAS release.
This thing happened with Pokemon Grey as well.

Game Freak has a knack of registering versions they are actually not developing.
 
Does rumor fit into this thread? Because I think that the 'Mew under the truck' and 'Bill's Secret Garden' would count in that case. *I can expand on these to make this a more informed post to the uninitiated
 
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TheMantyke

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I'm still sort of proud of my speculation on the existence of Cosmog / Cosmoem, even if it was expanding on what turned out to be a real leak. It's probably one of the best examples of rock solid expectations being shattered as listed in the OP considering it goes off of trends set in stone since gen 1.

My favorite rumor from the SM leak season was the idea of a cat that got a secondary typing depending on what the primary typing of the other parent. I just absolutely fell in love with the idea. I even figured out that we'd miss out on a few type combinations. No two egg groups together can give you a parent from every single type. :pirate:
 
I would like to post some comments about early game rumors from this tread that analized all pokemon up to Volcanion and is, to my knowledge, one of the most complete discussions of pokemon on the internet

Watch Da Birdie on Gen II said:
Generation II was the first "new generation" most of us experienced, and it was absolutely wild due to the Internet being rather young and ripe for rumors. Japan was far ahead of us in terms of new Pokemon being revealed, and thus there were plenty of misunderstandings with otherwise regular Generation II Pokemon being mistaken as "PokeGods" and catchable in Generation I games through obscure cheats and glitches, and a ton of fakes flying around like that panda and hammerhead shark that were claimed to be the next Box Mascots. I remember getting Pojo and Beckett Magazine around the time Gold and Silver were released in Japan, and all those horrifically ugly pseudo-Sugimori Art they used since they couldn't use the real thing, and the Sandwich Islands importer's guide, showing the sprites and data of all the New Pokemon
Watch Da Birdie on Gen IV said:
I considered myself quite skilled at navigating around the fandom, though I could not understand a lick of Japanese I'd managed to find out what Japanese sites one might check for instance for scans and new merchandise, and for the new few years---yeah, the gap between Generation III and IV was enormous all things considered---I religiously tried to stay on-top of every Generation IV happening. I remember when Lucario was revealed, and the speculation over whether or not he was a Legendary and how CoroCoro had teased him being a "fusion" between Mew and Blaziken. I remember when the silhouettes of Bonsly, Weavile, and Mime Jr. appeared soon after and everyone tried to guess what they were meant to be, many people thinking Weavile was some strange Aztec-mask Pokemon. I remember when Diamond and Pearl were announced, just the titles, and "the road to Diamond and Pearl" began consisting of Pokemon Trozei, Pokemon Mystery Dungeon and Pokemon Ranger being announced. I remember Manaphy popping up a year later, as Diamond and Pearl drew ever closer, and then Buizel, Mantyke, and Chatot---the latter who everyone thought was our first pure-Flying Pokemon
Watch Da Birdie on Gen V said:
Then there were the leaks around release---first "Wottergate" revealing all the Starter evolutions and finally the dam completely broke as Spanish site Pokexperto, run by famed "NO ES FAKE" fandom member Hiro, one-by-one leaked descriptions and a few pictures of all 150 New Pokemon---oh, did I say 150? Make that 156! Yes, Black and White was going to have 156 completely New Pokemon to play around with and when they were finally confirmed, fans found themselves intimidated with such a large batch of Pokemon to remember. Needless to say reaction to this was extremely mixed and, yes, "black and white"---you either loved the idea of 156 New Pokemon, or found it an annoying gimmick that forced players into using Pokemon who were commonly seen as poor replacements of the originals or flat-out terrible
Watch Da Birdie on gen VI said:
The Pokemon Company were frustratingly quiet about the games and all we got between then and the time the XY content really began to seep out was Mega Mewtwo Y (and that point simply known as "Awakened Mewtwo") and Sylveon, two Pokemon that gave fans a ton of speculation about what Generation VI would entail but few answers. Why was a classic Pokemon suddenly getting a new Forme? What Type was Sylveon exactly? Bug? Flying? Or something else entirely? The summer finally answered these questions, but Spring 2013 was quite a trying time for Pokemon fans everywhere

and of course the recent rumors about Pokemon Stars which where oddly started by a professional gaming press site
Tom Phillips from Eurogamer said:
A new version of Pokémon Sun and Moon will launch for Nintendo Switch.
Multiple sources tell Eurogamer the game is already well into development, will launch in 2017, and currently holds the codename of Pokémon Stars
full article here http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2016-11-18-nintendo-switch-will-get-pokemon-sun-and-moon-version
 
I remember some speculation before I took interest in the franchise that focused on the starters. A fake leak by purplekecleon (now glitchedpuppet) depicted a trio of Fighting, Psychic, and Dark starters. Instead, we received Turtwig, Chimchar, and Piplup back in August 2006; the core trio retained the Grass, Fire, and Water cycle that we still know and love today. (If I were interested in Pokémon at the time, I would have believed everything shown until anything was debunked because I was only eight years old and in 3rd grade at the time.)
This rumor might have even inspired the secondary typings of the Gen VI starter trio, as they each got one of those types to amplify the advantage that they got over the other starter. It might even go to show that Gamefreak does listen to all of this speculation and may even end up being inspired by some of the baseless rumors that float around the internet.
 
Interesting thread! A few small ones I remember at the moment:
  • Pokemon Grey would follow Black and White (which followed the pattern at the point; akin to Platinum, Emerald, Crystal, Yellow)
  • Alomomola would be an evolution for Luvdisc (everyone seemed sure of that for a while and was so hyped for some reason lol)
I also seem to remember rumors of an actual Pokemon Stadium 3 coming to Wii prior to the announcement of PBR (which ended up disappointing most). Maybe I'll remember some more later
 

Codraroll

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This rumor might have even inspired the secondary typings of the Gen VI starter trio, as they each got one of those types to amplify the advantage that they got over the other starter. It might even go to show that Gamefreak does listen to all of this speculation and may even end up being inspired by some of the baseless rumors that float around the internet.
Well, the particular rumour of Psychic/Fighting/Dark starters had been going around for years before Gen VI. I sometimes wonder if Game Freak created those secondary typings for those starters just to shut people up.

Also, do anybody remember "Mr. XY"? (Imgur link, not mine)



This guy had created a quite impressive fakedex, suggesting plenty of really interesting Pokémon concepts. You may notice pre-evolutions for Pinsir, Skarmory, and Heracross; and evolutions for Lumineon, Starmie, Houndoom, and others. Ironically, he hit the nail somewhat with the latter.

He was widely believed to be genuine, for a while, until he made the bold claim that the Pinsir and Heracross pre-evos would be revealed in the March 2013 CoroCoro. That failed to happen, and he publicly admitted to have made the whole thing up afterwards.
 
Not so sure if this counts but before SM were released, gamefreak hyped up Silvally, leading everyone to believe it would be like a second Arceus due to its ability and how GF explained its lore (Gladion even called it a Beast Killer at one point), then everybody (including me) were all disappointed that Silvally was in fact a sub par Pokemon contrary to what we all thought :/.
 
Not so sure if this counts but before SM were released, gamefreak hyped up Silvally, leading everyone to believe it would be like a second Arceus due to its ability and how GF explained its lore (Gladion even called it a Beast Killer at one point), then everybody (including me) were all disappointed that Silvally was in fact a sub par Pokemon contrary to what we all thought :/.
In fairness the open ended story of type: Null and the third type null could mean in USM we get, just maybe, a redemption of this? Not to raise hopes too much but this has been left open ended
 
Not so sure if this counts but before SM were released, gamefreak hyped up Silvally, leading everyone to believe it would be like a second Arceus due to its ability and how GF explained its lore (Gladion even called it a Beast Killer at one point), then everybody (including me) were all disappointed that Silvally was in fact a sub par Pokemon contrary to what we all thought :/.
Silvally is a second Arceus. And a lesser Arceus at that. It's pretty much what everyone speculated.

It does have some competitive issues but they are not related to pre-release hype. It's just things like its very scarce movepool (which could be fixed in Ultra Sun/Moon with tutors) or the Memories not giving any kind of boost unlike Plates (or being able to change type with Z-Crystals).
 
Silvally is a second Arceus. And a lesser Arceus at that. It's pretty much what everyone speculated.

It does have some competitive issues but they are not related to pre-release hype. It's just things like its very scarce movepool or the Memories not giving any kind of boost.
Yes but the way GF was hyping it up was as if it was actually a powerful mon, when in reality its average at best, I guess its decent in game (even you get it extremely late) with the Memories, but its still lackluster and doesn't go with its lore
 
Hey Cobraroll, remember when Groudon and Kyogre's used moves in a ORAS teaser that we didn't recognize and you said they can't be new moves because they've never introduced new moves mid generation before? Didn't you say you'd change your picture to a cod fish if they were new moves?
 
Yes but the way GF was hyping it up was as if it was actually a powerful mon, when in reality its average at best, I guess its decent in game (even you get it extremely late) with the Memories, but its still lackluster and doesn't go with its lore
Silvally has THE highest BST for non-Mega Evolved non-Legendary Pokemon after Slaking and School Form Wishiwashi. It also has the same BST as the Tapus and Ultra Beasts, so it has something "powerful". It's just that its qualities don't match.

And Silvally is indeed the Beast Killer Gladion claimed it to be. Outside of Xurktiree and Celesteela, all Ultra Beasts have a double-weakness... and guess what, Silvally can get STAB on each one of those weaknesses, and has enough bulk to survive their super-effective coverage moves. And even if Xurkitree does not have a double weakness, it hardly matters - Silvally wins anyways with both the Speed AND bulk to match.

252 Atk Silvally-Ground Multi-Attack vs. 0 HP / 4 Def Xurkitree: 314-372 (102.2 - 121.1%) -- guaranteed OHKO
252 SpA Xurkitree Energy Ball vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Silvally-Ground: 254-300 (76.7 - 90.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

On the other hand, Celesteela is annoying but since Silvally-Electric resists its STABs, it's not in a bad position. Again, Earthquake does not beat Silvally, and the latter does not even need investment as Multi-Attack 2HKOes the rare physically offensive Celesteela.

0 Atk Silvally-Electric Multi-Attack vs. 84 HP / 0 Def Celesteela: 182-216 (51.1 - 60.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252+ Atk Celesteela Earthquake vs. 0 HP / 0 Def Silvally-Electric: 212-250 (64 - 75.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
 
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Siggu, aren't Type: Null and Silvally implied to be sub-Legendaries based on that datamining process that took place around the time SM was released?
 

Pikachu315111

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Siggu, aren't Type: Null and Silvally implied to be sub-Legendaries based on that datamining process that took place around the time SM was released?
If I remember correctly, Type: Null & Silvally have the "Special Pokemon" green background in the Pokedex like the Island Guardians do.
 
And so do the Ultra Beasts, Pikachu315111. Now that sub-Legends are allowed in battle facilities, why haven't the likes of the birds and gerbils been stripped of their Legend status? Bank seems to treat them like regular Pokémon and does not refer to them as "Sub-Legendary," but these Pokémon still have their own hidden category.

In other words, why isn't the term "Sub-Legendary" officially acknowledged, even though "Special Legendary" and "Mythical" are?

EDIT: OOOOHHHHHH.... I get it now! The term is "Special". That's interesting to know.
 
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