Little things you like about Pokémon

Zinnia as a character was a pretty good addition to oras, had one of the best themes in the game
I... what?

I mean, yes, Zinnia was a better realized Lysandre, but the infuriating thing is that not one character in the games treats her like the villain she clearly is, in fact, the whole narrative seems to excuse her actions and portray her as a hero in spite her acting exactly like Maxie or Archie
 
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bb skarm

crib in the himalayas
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I... what?

I mean, yes, Zinnia was a better realized Lysandre, but the infuriating thing is that not one character in the games treats her like the villain she clearly is, in fact, the whole narrative seem to excuse her action and portray her as a hero in spite her acting very much exactly live Maxie or Archie
Doesn't really change my point :p regardless of if she was good or bad she was still a solid character
 
I... what?

I mean, yes, Zinnia was a better realized Lysandre, but the infuriating thing is that not one character in the games treats her like the villain she clearly is, in fact, the whole narrative seem to excuse her action and portray her as a hero in spite her acting very much exactly live Maxie or Archie
Don't be fooled by the wind, it is just as false as rain and sun! Embrace the one weather that will truly bring salvation! Praise be to the Sandstorm!
 

Pikachu315111

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Zinnia... is complicated. I don't necessarily think she's a bad character and her actions "make sense", but it's frustrating to see the other characters just let her get away with having done stupid things. This in turn makes her character look bad, because even if what she's doing "makes sense" it's also at the same time not the best decisions as she's struggling to find a solution to her problems and refuses to accept help from anyone until she's forced to (and only from the player). It makes her feel like a Mary Sue, doesn't matter what bad things she does, everyone forgives her in the end because she's been right all along despite lacking evidence for what she is saying. Let's not forget she knocks out May/Brendan, was planning on knocking out Wally, was massively disrespectful to Steven and the other scientists trying to stop the meteor, instead of explaining her position she destroys the Link Cable giving everyone no choice but to follow her plan (instead of leaving the Link Cable as Plan B), and if it wasn't for the player her plan would have failed and she would have doomed the planet. I guess there is some catharsis in that Zinnia realizing how close she was to dooming the planet shook her into going on a spiritual journey/journey or self-discovery so it's not that she didn't learn her lesson; but she still got away with harming and disrespecting many people.
 

bb skarm

crib in the himalayas
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Zinnia... is complicated. I don't necessarily think she's a bad character and her actions "make sense", but it's frustrating to see the other characters just let her get away with having done stupid things. This in turn makes her character look bad, because even if what she's doing "makes sense" it's also at the same time not the best decisions as she's struggling to find a solution to her problems and refuses to accept help from anyone until she's forced to (and only from the player). It makes her feel like a Mary Sue, doesn't matter what bad things she does, everyone forgives her in the end because she's been right all along despite lacking evidence for what she is saying. Let's not forget she knocks out May/Brendan, was planning on knocking out Wally, was massively disrespectful to Steven and the other scientists trying to stop the meteor, instead of explaining her position she destroys the Link Cable giving everyone no choice but to follow her plan (instead of leaving the Link Cable as Plan B), and if it wasn't for the player her plan would have failed and she would have doomed the planet. I guess there is some catharsis in that Zinnia realizing how close she was to dooming the planet shook her into going on a spiritual journey/journey or self-discovery so it's not that she didn't learn her lesson; but she still got away with harming and disrespecting many people.
Excellent take. I personally thought it was a cool addition because the only character in a game we had seen up to that point with like an actually complex personality and motives was N, and I felt that they did ultimately create a really unique character in a really good remake.
 
Zinnia... is complicated. I don't necessarily think she's a bad character and her actions "make sense", but it's frustrating to see the other characters just let her get away with having done stupid things.......
I've always seen Zinnia as an "ends justify the means" character. Her role is to save the world and tries to do so in a (arguably) more ethical way than Prof. Cosmo / Devon are planning. She worked for the villains because she's gotta find Rayquaza to stop the meteoroid, and last time Rayquaza came what when Kyogre and Groudon emerged, so she should help the people trying to wake them up. Her theft of the Key Stones presents itself as a last-ditch move, the meteoroid was days away and she has to summon Rayquaza. Zinnia also presents Prof. Cosmo's plan as being very bad specifically to the IRL player, as she knows of the alternate world (R/S/E), the player may know of R/S/E, and Prof. Cosmo's plan would teleport the meteoroid to a world that the player may have a connection to.

Even if the player never played R/S/E, then it is framed to be bad because another world may be destroyed with this plan, and we should not do it because people / pokemon are still dying / passing on the problems to someone else / its bad >:( . Zinnia's plan becomes the only plan in the eyes of the game and the player, and the game takes great efforts to narrow the focus to Zinnia. When Zinnia fails to make Rayquaza mega evolve, she steps aside and helps the player, focusing on saving the world above everything else. Her history with the Draconids shows that she truly believes that her plan is the plan above all else, and her role in the story is to tell the player that this is how it is going down. It's a little blunt, but works to hammer into the player that this is how it should be done.

As a final note, when initially talking about the Link Cable plan, Zinnia mentions that:
"I know all about it. About just what kinda energy you're using to fuel this rocket thing... The abominable technology humanity first thought up 3,000 years ago... So you're once again planning to claim that this is best for humanity, or best for the whole darn world... It's a snap of your fingers to repeat the sins of the past. Worse, if what I overheard is true... This time, you're about to commit an error more abominable than before!"
This quote ties the Link Cable plan back into the idea that infinity energy / ultimate weapon is, ya know, being created from the life of pokemon. :blobastonished: Now the Link Cable plan is framed as a bad plan because of the sacrifice of pokemon to make this plan work. Zinnia's plan in context seems more ethical, indicating that by following the Link Cable plan all the other characters are doing something wrong to save the world, and Zinnia is seen as alright in the end because she was willing to do something different/better. (or it worked and the world is saved, no consequences needed).

How did Devon get that energy anyways.... :blobglare:
 

Pikachu315111

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Zinnia also presents Prof. Cosmo's plan as being very bad specifically to the IRL player, as she knows of the alternate world (R/S/E), the player may know of R/S/E, and Prof. Cosmo's plan would teleport the meteoroid to a world that the player may have a connection to.

Even if the player never played R/S/E, then it is framed to be bad because another world may be destroyed with this plan, and we should not do it because people / pokemon are still dying / passing on the problems to someone else / its bad >:( . Zinnia's plan becomes the only plan in the eyes of the game and the player, and the game takes great efforts to narrow the focus to Zinnia. When Zinnia fails to make Rayquaza mega evolve, she steps aside and helps the player, focusing on saving the world above everything else. Her history with the Draconids shows that she truly believes that her plan is the plan above all else, and her role in the story is to tell the player that this is how it is going down. It's a little blunt, but works to hammer into the player that this is how it should be done.
And here's why my problem with Zinnia begin: How does she know this? How does she know (1.) the RSE world exists and (2.) that's exactly what the Link Cable is going to do? Infact, Professor Cozmo's plan isn't even about sending it to another dimension but simply warping it through space:

Professor Cozmo said:
By creating a warp hole in the path of the incoming meteoroid, we hope to be able to transport it somewhere far away from here. As a matter of fact, this technology already exists and has been incorporated in some of our commonly used devices. I think you know what I mean. Those panels than spin you about and then out you come, warped to another spot. I imagine you've stepped on a few such?
Essentially Cozmo's plan is putting a warp hole in front of the world and behind the world and having the meteor just skip the space around the world. I have no idea where Zinnia got the idea they were planning to teleport it to another dimension besides she's was coming up with some BS in order to try to sound she was mightier than thou.

Heck, looking through Cozmo's quotes, he DOES call her out on it!

Professor Cozmo said:
You fool! You have no substantive proof, and yet you claim another world, one just like our own, exists? Out of this fantasy, you—you have destroyed our only hope!"
Zinnia's response?

Calm down there, Prof. It'll be OK. I... We (referring to the player)... We can protect this world...and the other.
She also mentions this is all from ancient prophecy, so, yeah, Zinnia has no leg to stand on here in this regard of the argument. She's going on no proof besides legends her people have told, and it's even worse it's trying to use the meta trying to make the fans agree with her. "Oh no, the original RSE (and all other games in the old timeline) is in danger"! No it's not, I doubt my cartridges that took place in the old timeline is going to burst into flames. And once again, Cozmo's plan was to teleport the meteor around the planet, not to an alternate dimension (would he if that was the only option? Maybe, but it sounds like he barely has the energy to do the teleportation let alone an alternate dimension).

As a final note, when initially talking about the Link Cable plan, Zinnia mentions that:
"I know all about it. About just what kinda energy you're using to fuel this rocket thing... The abominable technology humanity first thought up 3,000 years ago... So you're once again planning to claim that this is best for humanity, or best for the whole darn world... It's a snap of your fingers to repeat the sins of the past. Worse, if what I overheard is true... This time, you're about to commit an error more abominable than before!"
This quote ties the Link Cable plan back into the idea that infinity energy / ultimate weapon is, ya know, being created from the life of pokemon. :blobastonished: Now the Link Cable plan is framed as a bad plan because of the sacrifice of pokemon to make this plan work. Zinnia's plan in context seems more ethical, indicating that by following the Link Cable plan all the other characters are doing something wrong to save the world, and Zinnia is seen as alright in the end because she was willing to do something different/better. (or it worked and the world is saved, no consequences needed).
How did Devon get that energy anyways.... :blobglare:
Huh, I didn't catch that part... and that's not exactly what's happening. Yes, they're using Infinite Energy, but they're not sacrificing Pokemon to do so. We know thanks to the fight between Groudon & Kyogre that the Infinite Energy within the planet is accessible and Devon Corporation has been mining it (that's what Sea Mauville was all about). But besides that, once again Cozmo explained where they're getting the energy: meteor shards:

"Well. We're not entirely sure, but... We do have a device that links the warp holes. We've named it the Link Cable. But there's no need to worry. Based on our theory, we can at least guarantee that we will be sending it away from our planet. However, we've realized that we will need more energy than originally anticipated to control the Link Cable properly... I'm sorry to ask this of you, but with one more Meteorite Shard..."
"I think we will be able to complete our preparations if we can get a Meteorite Shard from Meteor Falls. Young Steven has already set out. I trust you'll follow after him..."
Now I will also note Cozmo does sound here he only guarantees they'll be teleporting it away, but considering he mentions how the mechanics work is that they'll be connecting two warp holes he'll have to know where both warp holes will be. Still, they energy they're getting is from both the planet and meteor shards, not Pokemon.

I'll reiterate that I have no problem with Zinnia's actions... it's just how GF presented it. They tried to sidestep our logic by pandering to older fans by randomly throwing out that "hey, this meteor may be teleported to the old timeline and they'll be DOOMED!" (which I would then say that the Rayquaza in that timeline had no problem destroying meteors so it would still be perfectly safe (and here's that cutscene from the remakes)). I think Zinnia's argument would have still been "fine" if she simply argued that teleporting the meteor around the Pokemon world would save them but that meteor could then strike another habitable world and it would be their fault, thus its their responsibility to destroy the meteor and not make it someone else's problem. It's still essentially the same argument but falls align with what the game has been so thus far with how they were going to handle the meteor, not this random BS that Zinnia suddenly brought up.

And, once again, Zinnia gets away with being a massive f*** up. Now saying she shouldn't get away, but rather maybe as she's walking away from Sky Pillar after seeing the player saved the day she encounters Steven and Wallace who says she's still in trouble. They could imply they have a battle where Steven defeats her, and they all go back to see her grandmother. We have the scene with Zinnia and her grandmother but with the addition of Steven & Wallace, but instead of her grandmother telling her to see the world have her apologize the problems she had to cause and let it be Steven & Wallace be the ones to tell her she needs to go see the world and find herself. Same end result, but this its the people that Zinnia wronged (collectively represented by Steven & Wallace) who are absolving her.
 
And here's why my problem with Zinnia begin: How does she know this? How does she know (1.) the RSE world exists and (2.) that's exactly what the Link Cable is going to do?
I'm not gonna say it makes the complaints illegitimate, but... a lot of this is very standard anime tropes which we often see in Pokémon as well. Just completely going against logic and putting all your faith in the belief that there will be a better way which you and your allies will find through the power of your bonds and such. Going against fate and limitations; going "screw the rules, limits are meant to be broken".
Again, it doesn't make these criticisms illegitimate, especially if you don't like this kind of stuff in the first place. But it always strikes me when reading criticisms of Zinnia that the exact same things could be applied to popular things like Gurren Lagann, and that always interests me.
 
I also agree that Zinnia is a terrible character who is little more than a plot device. She barely had any foreshadowing in the main plot, appearing IIRC twice - once in Petalburg Woods, and the other post-Primal Reversion win. I don't think anyone would remember the character all that fondly if it wasn't for her battle theme music, I just can't really stand the character at all.

The fact that the Delta Episode is literally backtracking central instead of much actually NEW doesn't really help much either, though I did like the Wallace Emerald battle and going to space.
 
And here's why my problem with Zinnia begin: How does she know this? How does she know (1.) the RSE world exists and (2.) that's exactly what the Link Cable is going to do? Infact, Professor Cozmo's plan isn't even about sending it to another dimension but simply warping it through space:

Essentially Cozmo's plan is putting a warp hole in front of the world and behind the world and having the meteor just skip the space around the world. I have no idea where Zinnia got the idea they were planning to teleport it to another dimension besides she's was coming up with some BS in order to try to sound she was mightier than thou.

Heck, looking through Cozmo's quotes, he DOES call her out on it!

Zinnia's response?

She also mentions this is all from ancient prophecy, so, yeah, Zinnia has no leg to stand on here in this regard of the argument. She's going on no proof besides legends her people have told, and it's even worse it's trying to use the meta trying to make the fans agree with her. "Oh no, the original RSE (and all other games in the old timeline) is in danger"! No it's not, I doubt my cartridges that took place in the old timeline is going to burst into flames. And once again, Cozmo's plan was to teleport the meteor around the planet, not to an alternate dimension (would he if that was the only option? Maybe, but it sounds like he barely has the energy to do the teleportation let alone an alternate dimension).
The Delta Episode always struck me as following a traditional disaster movie plot, and in disaster movies (or any fate of the world/universe plot), the first plan needs to fail. Zinnia gets put in the position to both make this plan fail and offer up the solution. I think it would have been cleaner if the Link Cable plan failed of its own accord leaving Zinnia as the only option left. Her destroying the Link Cable and her actions only make sense to the player because of the alternate world and, since it exists they should not teleport the meteoroid somewhere else. The implications between Prof. Cosmo's explanation of the plan and Zinnia's alternate world shows to the player that this could be an outcome with Cosmo's plan and that it should not be done, no matter the concrete proof anyone has.
Huh, I didn't catch that part... and that's not exactly what's happening. Yes, they're using Infinite Energy, but they're not sacrificing Pokemon to do so. We know thanks to the fight between Groudon & Kyogre that the Infinite Energy within the planet is accessible and Devon Corporation has been mining it (that's what Sea Mauville was all about). But besides that, once again Cozmo explained where they're getting the energy: meteor shards:
Thanks! I had overlooked the whole reason why you are getting the shards, that does makes more sense.
I'll reiterate that I have no problem with Zinnia's actions... it's just how GF presented it. They tried to sidestep our logic by pandering to older fans by randomly throwing out that "hey, this meteor may be teleported to the old timeline and they'll be DOOMED!" (which I would then say that the Rayquaza in that timeline had no problem destroying meteors so it would still be perfectly safe (and here's that cutscene from the remakes)). I think Zinnia's argument would have still been "fine" if she simply argued that teleporting the meteor around the Pokemon world would save them but that meteor could then strike another habitable world and it would be their fault, thus its their responsibility to destroy the meteor and not make it someone else's problem. It's still essentially the same argument but falls align with what the game has been so thus far with how they were going to handle the meteor, not this random BS that Zinnia suddenly brought up.
I agree, I think the plot is messy with how it's presented, GF could have had Courtney / Matt destroy the link cable while trying to destroy the rocket, leaving Zinnia there as the last solution. GF could have just made Zinnia have the only outcome instead of having her make the plan fail and present her reasons why she did it.
While she gets the short stick in making the Link Cable plan fail, but I think the plot works enough anyways. The Delta Episode is faster paced and it only really works if you don't dwell on the reasons. At least for me, Zinnia works in the Delta Episode because she is written differently and pushes the plot around. When I played through OR/AS earlier this year, It flowed nicely and I did not need to dwell on the reasons why, I just needed to watch it unfold. Bringing up the R/S/E timeline works for me because it presents a bigger threat and makes the problem more threatening. The story takes advantage of this meta idea and I think using this idea works because it takes what the audience knows to argue against the plot.
 
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Pikachu315111

JAPE Judge!
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I'm not gonna say it makes the complaints illegitimate, but... a lot of this is very standard anime tropes which we often see in Pokémon as well. Just completely going against logic and putting all your faith in the belief that there will be a better way which you and your allies will find through the power of your bonds and such. Going against fate and limitations; going "screw the rules, limits are meant to be broken".
Again, it doesn't make these criticisms illegitimate, especially if you don't like this kind of stuff in the first place. But it always strikes me when reading criticisms of Zinnia that the exact same things could be applied to popular things like Gurren Lagann, and that always interests me.
Well there is another factor to this: the characters doing the "power of friendship will pull us through" are usually characters you like. And while I have no problem with Zinnia as a character, I like all the other characters who we got to know through the main game more than her. And not only did Zinnia essentially come out of nowhere (yes, I know she was disguised as a Magma/Aqua grunt at the beginning of the game, but you wouldn't know that your first playthrough and I think that's the only time she appears), she then harmed/insulted the characters you may have liked more than her. It can be a bad first impression of the character, and if that was the point than they want you to turn pretty quickly on her side at a turn of a dime. It's only after your forced to follow her plans do you learn her backstory but by then a lot of people would have made up their mind about her.

The fact that the Delta Episode is literally backtracking central instead of much actually NEW doesn't really help much either, though I did like the Wallace Emerald battle and going to space.
I don't necessarily think that's a bad thing being it's a post game story. We've been to most locations in the game at that point so they reuse locations giving them new purpose. And by doing this it makes the new location at the end of the post game episode feel a bit more special as it shows there is still some hidden locations.

Her destroying the Link Cable and her actions only make sense to the player because of the alternate world and, since it exists they should not teleport the meteoroid somewhere else.
But does it make sense to the player? Had Cozmo said "we'll use the link cable to shift the meteor to another dimension" then maybe some players would think that we could be accidentally teleporting it in front of another planet, then those thoughts get confirmed by Zinnia. But at the start he only says he'll be teleporting it away from the planet by making it go through warp portals, which gives the image of the meteor going through a portal in front of the planet and then coming out of another portal pointing away from the planet. So Zinnia's explanation comes out of nowhere as dimension shifting wasn't even on most people's minds (MAYBE some veteran players could have made the connection with the name of the device, the Link Cable, being a reference to the cable peripheral needed to communicate between two Game Boys, thus a connector between two worlds).

GF could have had Courtney / Matt destroy the link cable while trying to destroy the rocket, leaving Zinnia there as the last solution. GF could have just made Zinnia have the only outcome instead of having her make the plan fail and present her reasons why she did it.
No, I think that would have weaken Zinnia's character, same if the Link Cable plan went through but for some reason "failed". There's something else we're missing about Zinnia's character in the Delta Episode: for the first half of it she's an antagonist. Even before we learn about the meteor, her first act is to knock out May/Brendan and steal their Key Stone. Eventually we get involved with the meteor plot where she then shows up and start causing problems for everyone. Finally she breaks the Link Cable, her antagonist peak, which is then they try throwing in the plot twist she was good all along. It's a hard heel-face turn and not handled all that gracefully because now the game is suddenly all on her side.

It's easy to miss, but Zinnia is also one of the grunts battling the other team's leader at Mt. Chimney.
And honestly I think that's something which maybe should have been explored more. She would feel less out of the blue had we had more significant encounters with her throughout the story.

Imagine this, after Petalburg Woods (where she does take notice the player's skills) and before the next encounter with Team Aqua/Magma, she confronts the player and battles them. Players would be expecting the usual grunt Pokemon, only to be surprised by her sending out a Trapinch (OR)/Horsea (AS), Swablu, and then a Whismur. After the battle she heals up her Whismur, revealing its name to be Aster, and introduce herself as "Zee". She'll tell you a bit about the current plans of Aqua/Magma and mention she may potentially need the player's help cooling down (OR)/mopping up (AS) if the "Delta" doesn't appear. From there she'll appear here & there where Aqua/Magma are, on the side of the main action though gives the player some tips on what's going on/what to do/where to go (maybe also battling us to make sure we're ready for what's up next). Her final appearance in the main story is where she reveals she was the one who told the leader Groudon/Kyogre & legend of them being stopped by the "Delta". She'll be absent for the final part of the Aqua/Magma story, the next time we then seeing her is the cutscene that starts the Delta Episode and we see her true appearance.

It would be a good way to introduce her character but keep her a mystery. It would be a shock that she's now working against you where before she was a useful ally, and thus you want to find out why she made this sudden turn. And since we got her introduction out of the way and she sees you as a trustworthy trainer they could add in her telling legends of a world without Mega Evolution before she breaks the Link Cable. Then when she breaks the Link Cable she finally spill the beans and all the pieces come together.
 

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