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The Mysterious GS Ball

Posted January 11th, 2013 at 03:35 AM by Rivvon

I was looking through my old deviantArt journals when I came across this one I had written on December 19, 2011. I thought I would repost it here since it's Pokémon-related (and I'm cleaning up my dA page):



The official Pokémon website always has full English episodes of the Pokémon anime available for viewing by anyone, but they rotate the available episodes at any given time. At the moment they have some of the first Orange Islands episodes available under "Kanto Region." I thought I'd watch through a few, since I enjoyed the Pokémon anime a good deal when I was younger.

I got to season 2 episode 30, "Pokéball Peril," the episode where Brock leaves Ash and Misty to stay with Prof. Ivy, and Ash receives the GS Ball to return to Prof. Oak for research. This reminded me of some questions I've always had about the GS Ball, and I know for a fact that many others have had similar questions, for it was answered in an interview with Masamitsu Hidaka (one of the anime's directors) that the GS Ball was originally going to contain Celebi, who would then become the star of a long arc in the Johto seasons.

While it may seem that it's time to let the GS Ball go--it was a scrapped idea that was full of potential--I'm still writing this journal because there are still mysteries surrounding the GS Ball, namely in the games.

Despite the numerous "plot holes" and "inconsistencies" that appear in each main-series game, I still almost pride myself in being well-versed in the canon of them--and, as even a moderate Pokémon fan would know, the anime canon is completely separate from that of the main series games. This means that just because the mystery of the GS Ball was cleared up in the anime does not mean that it was cleared up in the games.

In Japan, it was possible, through event, to get a GS Ball on Crystal Version. This GS Ball could then be taken to Kurt, who would inspect it. The ball shook, and Kurt rushed out of his house to see that Ilex Forest had become "restless." At the Ilex Forest shrine, the player discovered that they could place the GS Ball into a small little hole in the shrine. After doing so, the trees shook--they were literally given a rustling animation--and Celebi flew down from the sky and confronted the player. After the battle, Kurt appeared again and claimed that the legends of the shrine were true after all (make note that, once the GS Ball is placed into the shrine, it can never be retrieved. It isn't certain if it disappears, or if the hole is sealed off--inspecting the shrine simply yields its standard strand of text. This could also mean a variety of things).

The interesting thing to note about this, as newer games would call it, "fateful encounter," is that Celebi does not appear from the GS Ball, but rather appears BECAUSE of the GS Ball. Celebi, the "guardian of the forest," appeared because something about the GS Ball (or maybe not!) was making the forest "restless," perhaps even putting the forest in danger. It is a very perplexing puzzle, and one that I hope gets answered someday. At this point there really is no answer--and there might not even be an answer; however, it does seem odd that any game developer would add in such fine details without meaning for there to be a reason behind it, so the chances that there is a deeper "story" behind the GS Ball are greater than the chances that there isn't.

The most viable option is that the GS Ball contained something that endangered the forest, which Celebi responded to. Granted, the fact that the GS Ball is classified as a Key Item, may mean that it doesn't have anything in it at all, (or it could mean the opposite--that it's full and cannot be used again as a standard Poké Ball) and that the GS Ball itself was making the forest "restless." This does pose a problem, however, with the earlier-mentioned fact that the GS Ball simply "disappears" after Celebi appears--Celebi did not get close enough to the shrine to have obviously done anything to the GS Ball, so what happened to it? If the GS Ball itself, or whatever was in it, was a threat to the forest, how was that threat taken care of? A third, and less likely--but still not completely impossible--option, is that something else was making the forest restless, and it just happened to be at the same time that Kurt was inspecting the GS Ball. This option would open up more mysteries, however, because that would mean that the GS Ball was used simply in summoning Celebi--but what happened to the threat afterward?

Again, it is impossible to say for sure. But I do hope that it is one day revealed, along with other old mysteries, such as the creation of Mewtwo, and Mew's relation to the Pokémon of Kanto.

What do you think is in the GS Ball? Do you think we will ever find out for certain? I personally think that the GS Ball, or whatever was inside of it, posed a threat to the forest, but the shrine the player placed it in essentially "nullified" the danger through magic of some sort. Celebi appeared to make sure everything was alright, or to "thank" the player for saving the forest. What do you think?

(If you want to see the "Celebi event" in English, this YouTube link provides what probably is the best viewing of it. While the GS Ball was obtained through hacking, the event itself is still canon because that is the official event translated by the US game translators and localizers.)
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  1. Old Comment
    Jellicent♀'s Avatar
    "In an interview with Masamitsu Hidaka in 2008, it was explained that the GS Ball was originally going to contain a Celebi that was to be the star of a large arc of the Johto saga. However, it was decided that Celebi would be the star of the fourth movie, so the story arc was viewed as redundant and shelved. The ball was left with Kurt with the hopes that viewers would eventually forget about it."
    Gotten from Bulbapedia.
    Posted January 11th, 2013 at 04:26 AM by Jellicent♀ Jellicent♀ is offline
  2. Old Comment
    Rivvon's Avatar
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Jellicent♀ View Comment
    "In an interview with Masamitsu Hidaka in 2008, it was explained that the GS Ball was originally going to contain a Celebi that was to be the star of a large arc of the Johto saga. However, it was decided that Celebi would be the star of the fourth movie, so the story arc was viewed as redundant and shelved. The ball was left with Kurt with the hopes that viewers would eventually forget about it."
    Gotten from Bulbapedia.
    Yeah, I mentioned that in the second paragraph x3 That only applies to the anime, however. I'm primarily focused on the games c:
    Posted January 11th, 2013 at 04:52 AM by Rivvon Rivvon is offline
  3. Old Comment
    Jellicent♀'s Avatar
    My mind could not process. It has the dumb.

    But I really never cared about it. I guess their desire to make it be forgotten even extended into the games, because instead of a GS Ball in Ilex Forest, we have to bring a random, funky Pichu into the Forest and then go back in time.
    Posted January 11th, 2013 at 10:47 AM by Jellicent♀ Jellicent♀ is offline
  4. Old Comment
    Rivvon's Avatar
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Jellicent♀ View Comment
    My mind could not process. It has the dumb.

    But I really never cared about it. I guess their desire to make it be forgotten even extended into the games, because instead of a GS Ball in Ilex Forest, we have to bring a random, funky Pichu into the Forest and then go back in time.
    Ha ha, that's alright! We all have those moments ^u^
    That's a very good point, though! The Spiky-Eared Pichu working as its replacement definitely plays a huge factor in the GS Ball's original meaning.
    Posted January 18th, 2013 at 08:17 PM by Rivvon Rivvon is offline
 

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