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Old 4 Weeks Ago (11:59 AM). Edited 4 Weeks Ago by Ivysaur.
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Ivysaur Ivysaur is offline
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So, after the latest beta dump about Gen I development, Jake invited me to write something. And I wrote... man did I write. Feel free to comment, edit and slice all you need :P


Why doesn't Blastoise have a fluffy tail like Squirtle and Wartortle? Why does Vulpix's R/B pokédex entry mention that "it's born with a single tail which splits into six with age"? Why does the Earth Badge look like a feather and Blaine looks nothing like his concept art from the instruction book? What caused the legendary Missingno to exist?

Once upon a time, Game Freak was not a big, accomplished developer capable of releasing good, content-packed games in a 2-year cycle. In the early 90s, the company was more of a group of friends with a concept and some programming knowledge, struggling to turn their ideas into an actual game. Everything changed after 1999- by then, GF had managed to release two critically acclaimed games in Japan and Pokémon was becoming a cultural phenomenon in the West. After that point, they knew what their series was about and could throw money at their problems, hiring the best staff they could need.

But the utterly fascinating part is precisely what came before 1999. A constant flow of leaks and prototypes in the recent years has allowed us to piece together a story of the slow, halting development of the first generation of pokémon. With those data, we can reconstruct the thinking process- how GF defined what a pokémon even was, and how the gameplay would work. And, of course, the games looked very differently in their first incarnations. The games are full of hints and obscure leftovers- which now make a lot of sense.

I don't intend on doing an in-depth analysis of every nook and cranny. If you want that, I can't recommend enough the brilliant investigations of Helix Chamber and The Cutting Room Floor, where most of the images and leaks come from. But putting all their amazing findings together, we can see a global image coming out. This is a narration of how Gen I came into being- and all the facts about development we can put together from the beta leftovers.

Part 1- What is a pokémon?

Obviously every user in The PokéCommunity in 2019 knows very well what a pokémon is. But the same cannot be said of a group of friends who had just started a videogame company in 1989 after the success of their “Game Freak” magazine. The original concept of "Capsule Monsters", which was leaked long ago (you can see it here), shows some ideas we now know -monsters that can be tamed, trained, used in battles and exchanged with other people- but also a lot of misses. For instance, pokémon were supposed to be bought in shops, and you'd need "charisma" stats for them to stick with you. Evolution, back then, wasn't even mentioned. After all, most real bugs -Satoshi Tajiri's well-known inspiration- don't turn into others. But some -think butterflies- do. And that stuck within his brain, as we'll see later.

But the best demonstration of what they thought a pokémon was is... the designs that already existed by then. We know in which order (most of) the original pokémon were created thanks to the internal ID list in R/G/B/Y. That list was filled as the new designs were added to the game, resulting in, for instance, Ivysaur being nowhere near its family members and Rhydon being #001, as the first mon being inserted.

We know that index order is the real deal thanks to other leaks: in the Tajiri manga, for instance, there are pictures of the original development documents, showing many of them -including ones that were eventually cut- with an ID number that matches the index order. We also saw another series of blurry pics in an official GF video, showing more ID numbers of later pokémon- which also match the index. So thanks to it, we can figure out the "stages" the monsters we currently know and love went through, and how the concept of what they should be evolved.

Again, the folks at Helix Chamber have divided the development of the monsters themselves in five big “eras”. I’ll go quickly over them, before moving into the main dish: the beta pokémon.

In the first one, dating back to the first pitch, the pokémon -or, rather, Capumon or Capsule Monsters- were outright beasts, heavily influenced by Japanese legends and Godzilla-style tales.

Spoiler:


Spoiler:

Credit: Helix Chamber

Here we can see that many of the original team -all but two surviving to this day- looked pretty samey. Rhydon and Kangaskhan seem extremely similar, and the one in between (“Gyaoon”, that was eventually scrapped before being inserted) looked remarkably similar to Kangaskhan caught mid-scream after someone stole her baby. And Nidoqueen seems a relative of all three. Proto-Scyther had a face like Lapras's. Even the cuter ones, like Clefairy or the Nidorans, seemed far more monstrous than they eventually became. But we already see many interesting concepts- Exeggcute and Exxeggutor seem related, and the Nido family looks pretty formed as it is.

In general, you can notice big, evolved pokémon -like Blastoise, Gengar, Arcanine or a thing that, yes, is supposed to be Gyarados- mixing with base forms like Cubone, Staryu or Voltorb, as well as ‘unique’ mons, such as Lapras. All of them, though, have a clear concept, related to legends or to their own identity, that makes them unique and monstrous, with the idea of evolution being hinted at but not fully developed.


Credit: Helix Chamber

Then, the list takes a turn into more animal-like beasts, with a clear elemental typing. Graveler, Arbok, Psyduck, Mankey, Tauros, Digglett, Dragonite, Meowth… they are all believable species of wild animals in the world they were creating, and all of them had a very clear type. In fact, of these, only a minority have double typing, and most of their elemental affinities become extremely obvious just by glancing at their sprites: Machoke and Hitmonlee have a transparent concept, as so do Koffing and Magneton. The Legendary Birds may be the ones with a clearer double-type format, but their Japanese names (Freeze, Thunder and Fire) make it clear that they, indeed, were going for an in-your-face kind of obvious elemental monsters.

The third group came into being after Atsuko Nishida joined the team, to make pokémon that were “cuter”, according to Sugimori. There you see elemental animals, like Vulpix, Pikachu, Sandshrew, Dratini, Jigglypuff and Eevee (and their respective families) which looked less threatening than, say, Arcanine or any of the Big Bulky Monsters of the early days. By now, the idea of evolution was pretty much set and every pokémon was inserted along with at least one relative.

And… that is precisely what moved the fourth age into being: inserting dozens of evolutions and pre-evolutions for the early pokémon that had been left lonely, or middle stages for ones that seemed to evolve too massively (like Nidoran to Nidoqueen/king or Gastly to Gengar). Two more gimmick pokémon -Mewtwo and Snorlax- appear there, suggesting that they were progressing with the game design to the point of needing two more stand-alone ones for plot purposes.

Finally, the last group seems to include last-minute additions of three-stage elemental animals in types that were short of members, plus a couple of early-stage mons in evolutionary families that still seemed incomplete. But perhaps more interesting is that, among those groups, we see two families of starters! Apparently nobody had thought about game balance at the beginning. Or maybe they just looked at Ivysaur’s now-complete family and thought “hey, let’s go with this”.

2- The pokémon that weren't: the beta and scrapped monsters

One of the childhood legends for every kid that grew up with the original GB games (I know, I'm old) was the fascinating Missingno. A weird glitchy mess that ruined your Elite 4 records, was bird-type (what) and multiplied your bag items- but just the 6th slot. Easily accessible thanks to an utterly stupid trick that resembled all the urban legends you heard at recess (talk to the Coffee Man, watch his demonstration, fly to Cinnabar, surf along the coastline). In other words, it was every kid's dream bug. But what, exactly, was that mess? Easy: the restless spirit of cut pokémon, speaking to us from the programming nether.

The index list has a bunch of 'undead' pokémon, that were removed along the way so that the originally planned 186 became the final 151. Their holes along the list became Missingnos- a failsafe so the game wouldn't implode when accidentally triggered to show one of them. (If nothing else, Gen I is a fantastic demonstration of how to program a game so that it keeps running even faced with the dumbest, most insane accidental bugs).

Many of those long-lost pokémon could be seen through leaks -that Tajiri manga, other development images-. Recently, Helix Chamber got hold of the backsprites of many of those pokémon. Some of those discoveries are amazing. Now, look at the eras image… with them added (credit to Helix Chamber, again).



Those are some changes! And yet, they mostly match what we knew. The beta pokémon in the first era look much like the monsters we mentioned before- #31 looks like a generic Big Bulky Best such as the ill-fated Gyaoon, and #32 looks like a Nidoran Male clone, which makes you wonder, above all: why? Is that an attempt at a non-binary Nido?

Then, as we go on, we see that the scrapped pokémon look very much like you’d expect in all of their “eras”. In Era 2, that of the elemental animals, you get a deer (#56), an elephant (#61), an octopus-like thing (#63), a cactus (#67), a shark (#68), a bat before Zubat existed (#69), a male Jynx (#52), which makes you wonder whether they were planning on more gendered species other than the Nidos, and… a vaguely animal-like thing (#62). Also ball Kirby a balloon (#60), of all things. [As a Drifloon fan, I’m glad they pulled it off properly three generations later].

The more interesting stuff comes starting with Era 3. We have three pairs of cute scrapped mons: two fish-like creatures (#79 and #80), two generic monsters with bulging eyes (#94 and #95) and two that are… frankly indescribable (#86 and #87). But there is one that stands out massively: Mikon (#81), also seen in the beta of Gen II. The baby Vulpix matches the description from the pokédex in the original games, in which the fox pokémon is said to be born with one tail which later splits into six. That's a fascinating reference to a pokémon that never made the final list.

Again, Era 4 also matches the overall pattern. We have evos of unmatched pokémon, like the octopus from earlier (#122), or Psyduck, which apparently had not one, but two evolutions! (#122). The same goes for a Magneton-like pokémon (#140) and an evolved Marowak that looks like Kangaskhan with a skull (#146). In the same vein, there is what seems an evolved form of the also-scrapped #31 (#137). But there is also a Mikon-like baby mon that was supposed to appear in Gen II: the utterly adorable baby Meowth (#134). Sadness abounds.

And those aren’t the only ones: in Era 5, there is a baby Ponyta (#162) and a baby Goldeen (#156) that were supposed to turn their families into neat groups of three, like most of the new ones added by then. Incidentally, that would also explain Ponyta’s absurd level 40 evolution. There is also the baby form of the bulging eyes duo of Era 3 (#174) and… Gorochu, the evolved form of Raichu! (#175). Some time ago, its existence was revealed in an interview, but it was said to have been removed to “keep the game balanced”. But, remember that infamous line in which, after an in-game trade, a NPC tells you “Your Raichu went and evolved”? Well, even if all signs point at a faulty localisation (in Japanese Blue you are trading a Kadabra and a Haunter), it seems such a thing was actually supposed to happen! Certainly, knowing The Pokémon Company’s obsession with Pikachu, it’d have been a shame if they had ended up neglecting not only one but two evolved forms of the best-known series mascot. At least I’m glad our Alolan pancake boi did get into the family, eventually.

And then… come the two most fascinating families. One is the Kotora line. #159 through #161 were supposed to be three-stage line of an adorable electric tiger that was eventually scrapped. Its third stage was seemingly dumped into the graveyard of beta elements, but the first and second stages, Kotora and Raitora, were given a new lease of life in Gen II… before being scrapped right back. They probably are the cutest pokémon that never existed.


Let's all have a moment of silence for them

But the icing in the cake is the fact that... Blastoise was not supposed to be Wartortle's evolution! As we discussed before, the non-Bulbasaur starters were added really late into development, while Blastoise was one of the early birds (or, well, turtles). But the two starter late lines weren’t added in neat trios, like the rest of the Era 5 families. Rather, the order is as follows: Charmander-Squirtle-Charmeleon-Wartortle-Charizard… and then there is a Missingno. You can notice a pattern.


Hmm...

It becomes even more intriguing when you notice how the Char family shares the same base cry, which its pitch altered, and both Squirtle and Wartortle do as well- but Blastoise has a completely different one. And then, turns out, the mysterious Missingno that goes where the Wartortle evolution should be has... Squirtle's cry, but with its pitch changed in the same way Charizard's is modified from Charmander's. Indeed, it was supposed to be a Big Wartortle! With the same ears and twirly tail- and cry.


WHY GAME FREAK WHY

But that’s not all! In spot #172, you find something that looks like a turtle, with what seems to be a bubble on its nose and something that resembles cannons in the back- easily a Blastoise pre-evo. How did the two families get mixed? It is possible to imagine that, during the culling stage, when they narrowed the pokédex down to a neat round 150, they decided to get rid of two “redundant” turtles. But instead of shelving the Blastoise line, they decided to get rid of Big Wartortle and Little Blastoise and repurpose the one turtle they had known for years as the end the Squirtle line.

3- About Mew

There is one last, fascinating topic, in the form of the well-known Mew. The legendary pokémon -easily the biggest urban legend of Gen I- was added, as Shigeki Morimoto said in an 'Iwata Asks' interview, at the very last moment. “We had 300 bytes after removing the debug program, just enough to place Mew in”, he says. And that makes some sense- spot #21 in the index list was once occupied by “Omega”, a Blastoise look-alike reminiscing of the Kaiju monsters of Japanese movies.

Not only that, but the beta list also reveals that, by the time all the 190 pokémon had been programmed (as well as the trainers), Mew was nowhere to be found, and slot #21 was empty. So, indeed, Morimoto’s story matches the facts! Mew seems to have been a last-minute addition, and it’s believable that Omega was one of the earliest “culled” mons, as the Big Bulky Beasts of Era 1 started to feel redundant, and its slot was used for debug tools.

But there is something that doesn’t match the facts: pokémon #131, from Era 4, better known as Mewtwo. How could a ‘second Mew’ have existed years before the ‘first’ one did? According to Morimoto, Mew was supposed to be just a “namedrop” in the Cinnabar Mansion logs. Which means it’s very likely Mew was planned from the start, but they intentionally intended to leave it as a hook for the sequel- dropping hints about its existence at the end of the game (of which Mewtwo would be the clearest one). Maybe Mew would have played a bigger role in Gold and Silver, or been a big continuity reward for players who remembered him from the original games… until Morimoto decided it was even cannier to hid a golden Easter Egg and urban legend. Certainly, it seems he had the better vision.

4- Giovanni, Blaine and the Mystery Kid

But if the titular pokémon changed, the actual content of the game also went through several stages. Admittedly, it feels as if the team had a very clear idea of how they wanted the games to be- the Kanto Map looks very similar to its final incarnation, and some of the challenges look set from the start. But some things really did change.

One of the biggest questions is… Giovanni. His existence really confuses me to no end. This section is going to be more speculative than anything, but it really, really feels like the charismatic leader of Team Rocket wasn’t supposed to exist at first, with his role occupied by different people. Eventually, he was created and placed in key events -8th gym, Silph Co- where he didn’t initially belong. And his existence caused a strange switch between another gym leader and a dummied-out character… for some reason.

This is all very cryptic. But let’s start with a few pictures from Sugimori himself, shared in his Twitter, of very early concept art of the Gym Leaders:


I prefer them in their Sun/Moon anime style tbh

Here there are our good friends Brock, Misty, Lt. Surge and Erika- so far so good. Except their order is… strange. But here is when the real fun starts.


Hey it's... yeah, him.

Here is a little bit of an unmistakeable Koga and… some strange guy! Who? Well, this guy? Don’t you remember your anime?


"It's in the place where firefighters never win"

Still no idea? Well, it’s Blaine, of course! Haven’t you looked at your instruction booklet?


That's Blaine! Next to THE BROCK

If you are wondering, yeah, you’re right, that’s not how Blaine looks, at all! This is Blaine! So, what is going on?
But wait! There is another picture! Look at this:


Is that a kid-sized Team Rocket badge too?

There is a kid! As the first gym leader! With Giovanni’s pose, of all things! Really, look at this!


Left: Giovanni. Right: Not Giovanni.

So, we can conclude that, at the beginning of development, the order was Weird Kid – Brock – Misty – Lt. Surge – Erika – Koga – Soldier Blaine – Sabrina. Notice something? There is no Giovanni in the leaders list! Then, who is taking over Silph Co? Why, it’s Chief! Or, in Japanese, “Silph’s Chief”. His name made it into the final games, even, as a dummy trainer that went unused! And how did he look, exactly? Well…


Body swap

Wait, isn’t that modern-day Blaine? Well it is! Which also explains why Silph’s president shares a sprite with Blaine -and Blaine only- in Yellow!


Left: Have a Master Ball! Right: Have a badge!

So, at this point, we can see a faint image of a plot in which Giovanni didn’t exist, the overpowered Psychic gym was the final challenge, and the Silph Co adventure was part of a cunning plan by its own president. But someone thought that having a Gym in Viridian was a bit pointless- after all, you literally had just started the game, so throwing you into a Gym right away wasn’t the best idea. And so Giovanni came into being, reusing the pose originally intended for the kid leader, and eventually replaced Silph’s chief as well. And his dummy sprite, now unused, was given to Blaine, since there already was a military-type leader (and the people doing the booklet didn’t hear about the changes).

Or that is what I’d think, if it wasn’t because… Giovanni already appeared in the first revision of the battle sprite list, when kid leader had a different pose and most Gym Leaders didn’t even exist!


Also: who is the guy in Brock's place?

Soo… colour me stumped. Another possibility is that Giovanni was going to have a small role as a Team Rocket leader, up until Celadon, and they put the Silph Co takeover under his list of crimes afterwards. Except that wouldn’t explain why a Rocket grunt name-checks Chief -in all caps, like all other names in the game- in Celadon!


We just shipped 2000 POKéMON as slot prizes!

Then there is the fact that Giovanni got his pose before the leader kid did… even though the kid already had that pose in the gym leader concept art! Seriously, I’d like to know exactly what happened.

One last thing. This was Giovanni’s original Gym Leader team, according to the beta info: FARFETCH'D (50), FEAROW (48), DODRIO (46), PIDGEOT (47), AERODACTYL (44). Other than the hilarity of the boss of Team Rocket using a Farfetch’d as his ace, that shows another beta leftover: the Earth Badge… is a feather!


Clearly Earth-related


Someone in Bulbapedia posted a retconned image of the badge. This is the real one! It's a feather!

Interestingly, this situation is very similar to that of Ocarina of Time (a game relased around the same time), in which the Forest Temple was originally wind-themed, as you can see in the Forest Medallion -which has wind imagery- and Ganon's "forest" room being full of wind puzzles. I guess that's why they felt bad and made the first gym in G/S a flying-type one.

It seems the mystery of how Giovanni got into his slot as Viridian Gym leader and Silph Co’s invader will remain. But at least we know something: before he liked Dugtrios, he liked Farfetch’d. And that is possibly the closest our dear leek duck has ever been to relevancy. Considering that it was supposed to have an evolution in Gen II that was also scrapped, it seems someone really hated it in Game Freak. Poor Farfetch’d.
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Old 4 Weeks Ago (7:38 PM). Edited 4 Weeks Ago by Sheep.
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Sheep Sheep is offline
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Only going to point out some minor things for now since I need to sleep soon. Don't want to take too much work away from our proofers either, oop.

For consistency with our other articles, should probably change all instances of pokédex -> Pokédex and pokémon -> Pokémon, even if the latter is more of a regular noun like cat/dog/etc...
Missingno -> MissingNo.

Quote:
Why does the Earth Badge look like a feather and Blaine looks nothing like his concept art from the instruction book?
Would put a comma after feather.

Quote:
Everything changed after 1999-
Space before the hyphen (across all instances of this), or you can use an en or em dash, which are long enough to not really need spaces on either side.

Quote:
the games looked very differently
Differently -> different. You can't interchange them since differently is an adverb, otherwise the meaning would change.

Quote:
The PokéCommunity
No need to capitalize the!

Quote:
Exxeggutor
Quote:
Digglett
Exeggutor
Diglett

There is a lot more I can point out, but I want others to take a look before I go too crazy aha. Hadn't had a chance to read much yet because am sleepy and /runs to zzzzz
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Old 4 Weeks Ago (4:03 PM).
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Trev Trev is offline
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These edits are just for the big paragraphs and the meat of the article. I left captions alones. In regards to suggested edits, feel free to ignore them. They're mostly just changed to wording that make the sentence clearer, but they aren't entirely necessary.

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Spoiler:
Why doesn't Blastoise have a fluffy tail like Squirtle and Wartortle? Why does Vulpix's R/B pokédex entry say, "It's born with a single tail which splits into six with age?" Why does the Earth Badge look like a feather? Why does Blaine looks nothing like his concept art from the instruction book? What caused the legendary MissingNo. to exist?

Once upon a time, Game Freak (GF) was not a big, accomplished developer capable of releasing good, content-packed games in a 2-year cycle. In the early 90s, the company was more of a group of friends with a concept and some programming knowledge, struggling to turn their ideas into an actual game. Everything changed after 1999. By then, GF had managed to release two critically acclaimed games in Japan and Pokémon was becoming a cultural phenomenon in the West. After that point, they knew what their series was about and could throw money at their problems, hiring the best staff they could need.

But the utterly fascinating part is precisely what came before 1999. A constant flow of leaks and prototypes in the recent years has allowed us to piece together a story of the slow, halting development of the first generation of Pokémon. With those data, we can reconstruct the thinking process, like how GF defined what a Pokémon even was, and how the gameplay would work. And, of course, the games looked very differently in their first incarnations. They are full of hints and obscure leftovers- that now make a lot of sense.

I don't intend on doing an in-depth analysis of every nook and cranny. If you want that, I can't recommend enough the brilliant investigations of Helix Chamber and The Cutting Room Floor, where most of the images and leaks come from. But putting all their amazing findings together, we can see a global image coming out. This is the story of how Gen I came into being - and a presentation of all the facts about development we can put together from the beta leftovers.

Part 1 - What is a Pokémon?

Obviously, every user in the PokéCommunity in 2019 knows very well what a Pokémon is. But the same cannot be said of a group of friends who had just started a videogame company in 1989 after the success of their “Game Freak” magazine. The original concept of "Capsule Monsters," which was leaked long ago (you can see it here), shows some ideas we now know - monsters that can be tamed, trained, used in battles and exchanged with other people - but also a lot of misses. For instance, Pokémon were supposed to be bought in shops , and you'd need "charisma" stats for them to stay with you. Evolution, back then, wasn't even mentioned. After all, most real bugs - Satoshi Tajiri's well-known inspiration - don't turn into others. But some - think butterflies, for example, - do. And that stuck with in his brain, as we'll see later.

However, the best example of what they thought a Pokémon was were... the designs that already existed by then. We know in which order (most of) the original Pokémon were created thanks to the internal ID list in R/G/B/Y. That list was filled as the new designs were added to the game, resulting in, for instance, oddities like Ivysaur being nowhere near its family members and Rhydon being #001, as the first Pokémon being created.We know that index order is the real deal thanks to other leaks. In the Tajiri manga, for instance, there are pictures of the original development documents, showing many Pokémon - including ones that were eventually cut - with an ID number that matches the index order. We also saw another series of blurry pics in an official GF video, showing more ID numbers of later Pokémon - That also match the index. So thanks to that, we can see the changes the monsters we currently know and love went through, and how the concept of what they should be evolved.

Again, The folks at Helix Chamber have divided the development of the monsters themselves in five big “eras.I’ll go quickly over them, before moving into the main dish: the beta pokémon. In the first one, dating back to the first pitch, the Pokémon - known as Capumon or Capsule Monsters at the time - were outright beasts, heavily influenced by Japanese legends and Godzilla-style tales.



Here we can see that many of the original designs - all but two surviving to this day - looked pretty similar. Rhydon and Kangaskhan seem extremely similar, and the one in-between (“Gyaoon,which was eventually scrapped before being inserted) looked remarkably similar to Kangaskhan caught mid-scream after someone stole her baby. And Nidoqueen seems like a relative of all three. Proto-Scyther had a face like Lapras's. Even the cuter ones, like Clefairy or the Nidorans, seemed far more monstrous than they eventually became. But We also see many interesting concepts - Exeggcute and Exxeggutor seem related, and the Nido family looks pretty formed as it is.

In general, You may notice that big, evolved Pokémon - like Blastoise, Gengar, Arcanine or the thing that, yes, is supposed to be Gyarados - are mixing with base forms like Cubone, Staryu or Voltorb, as well as "unique" Pokémon, such as Lapras. All of them, though, have a clear concept, related to Japanese legends or to their own identity, which makes them unique and monstrous. with The idea of evolution is being hinted at but it is not fully developed.



Then, the list takes a turn into more animal-like beasts, with a clear elemental typing. Graveler, Arbok, Psyduck, Mankey, Tauros, Digglett, Dragonite, Meowth - they are all similar to species of wild animals in the world the developers were creating, and all of them have a very clear type. In fact, of these, only a minority have double typing, and most of their elemental affinities become extremely obvious just by glancing at their sprites. Machoke and Hitmonlee have a transparent appearance, as so do Koffing and Magneton. The Legendary Birds the ones with a clearer double-type format, and their Japanese names (Freeze, Thunder and Fire) make it clear that they, indeed, were going for an are in-your-face obvious kind of obvious elemental monsters.

The third group came into existence after Atsuko Nishida joined the team, to make Pokémon that were “cuter,” according to Sugimori. Here you see elemental animals, like Vulpix, Pikachu, Sandshrew, Dratini, Jigglypuff and Eevee (and their respective families) that looked less threatening than, say, Arcanine or any of the Big Bulky Monsters of the early days. By now, the idea of evolution was established and nearly every Pokémon had at least one relative.

And… That is precisely what pushed the fourth era into existence: inserting dozens of evolutions and pre-evolutions for the early Pokémon that had none, or middle stages for ones that seemed to evolve too massively (like Nidoran to Nidoqueen/Nidoking or Gastly to Gengar). Two more gimmick Pokémon - Mewtwo and Snorlax - appear here, suggesting that the developers were progressing with the game design to the point of needing two more stand-alone Pokémon for plot purposes.

Finally, the last era seems to include last-minute additions of three-stage elemental animals in types that were short of members, plus a couple of early-stage Pokémon in evolutionary families that still seemed incomplete. But perhaps more interesting is that, among those groups, we see two families of starters! Apparently, nobody had thought about game balance at the beginning, or maybe they just looked at Ivysaur’s now-complete family and thought,Hey, let’s go with this.

2 - The Pokémon that weren't: the beta and scrapped monsters

One of the childhood legends for every kid that grew up with the original GB games (I know, I'm old) was the fascinating MissingNo. A weird glitchy mess that ruined your Elite 4 records, was Bird-type (what?!) and multiplied the item in the 6th slot. MissingNo. was easily accessible thanks to an utterly stupid trick that resembled all the urban legends you heard at recess (talk to the Coffee Man, watch his demonstration, fly to Cinnabar, and surf along the coastline). In other words, it was every kid's dream bug. But what, exactly, was that mess? Easy: the restless spirit of cut Pokémon, speaking to us from the programming nether.

The index list has a bunch of "undead"Pokémon, that were removed along the way so that the originally planned 186 became the final 151. Their holes along the list became Missingnos - a fail-safe so the game wouldn't implode when accidentally triggered to show one of them. (If nothing else, Gen I is a fantastic demonstration of how to program a game so that it keeps running even faced with the dumbest, most insane accidental bugs).

Many of those long-lost Pokémon could be seen through leaks - that Tajiri manga, other development images-. Recently, Helix Chamber got hold of the backsprites of many of those Pokémon. Some of those discoveries are amazing. Now, look at the era's image… with them added in (credit to Helix Chamber, again).


To be finished:

Spoiler:
Those are some changes! And yet, they mostly match what we knew. The beta pokémon in the first era look much like the monsters we mentioned before- #31 looks like a generic Big Bulky Best such as the ill-fated Gyaoon, and #32 looks like a Nidoran Male clone, which makes you wonder, above all: why? Is that an attempt at a non-binary Nido?

Then, as we go on, we see that the scrapped pokémon look very much like you’d expect in all of their “eras”. In Era 2, that of the elemental animals, you get a deer (#56), an elephant (#61), an octopus-like thing (#63), a cactus (#67), a shark (#68), a bat before Zubat existed (#69), a male Jynx (#52), which makes you wonder whether they were planning on more gendered species other than the Nidos, and… a vaguely animal-like thing (#62). Also ball Kirby a balloon (#60), of all things. [As a Drifloon fan, I’m glad they pulled it off properly three generations later].

The more interesting stuff comes starting with Era 3. We have three pairs of cute scrapped mons: two fish-like creatures (#79 and #80), two generic monsters with bulging eyes (#94 and #95) and two that are… frankly indescribable (#86 and #87). But there is one that stands out massively: Mikon (#81), also seen in the beta of Gen II. The baby Vulpix matches the description from the pokédex in the original games, in which the fox pokémon is said to be born with one tail which later splits into six. That's a fascinating reference to a pokémon that never made the final list.

Again, Era 4 also matches the overall pattern. We have evos of unmatched pokémon, like the octopus from earlier (#122), or Psyduck, which apparently had not one, but two evolutions! (#122). The same goes for a Magneton-like pokémon (#140) and an evolved Marowak that looks like Kangaskhan with a skull (#146). In the same vein, there is what seems an evolved form of the also-scrapped #31 (#137). But there is also a Mikon-like baby mon that was supposed to appear in Gen II: the utterly adorable baby Meowth (#134). Sadness abounds.

And those aren’t the only ones: in Era 5, there is a baby Ponyta (#162) and a baby Goldeen (#156) that were supposed to turn their families into neat groups of three, like most of the new ones added by then. Incidentally, that would also explain Ponyta’s absurd level 40 evolution. There is also the baby form of the bulging eyes duo of Era 3 (#174) and… Gorochu, the evolved form of Raichu! (#175). Some time ago, its existence was revealed in an interview, but it was said to have been removed to “keep the game balanced”. But, remember that infamous line in which, after an in-game trade, a NPC tells you “Your Raichu went and evolved”? Well, even if all signs point at a faulty localisation (in Japanese Blue you are trading a Kadabra and a Haunter), it seems such a thing was actually supposed to happen! Certainly, knowing The Pokémon Company’s obsession with Pikachu, it’d have been a shame if they had ended up neglecting not only one but two evolved forms of the best-known series mascot. At least I’m glad our Alolan pancake boi did get into the family, eventually.

And then… come the two most fascinating families. One is the Kotora line. #159 through #161 were supposed to be three-stage line of an adorable electric tiger that was eventually scrapped. Its third stage was seemingly dumped into the graveyard of beta elements, but the first and second stages, Kotora and Raitora, were given a new lease of life in Gen II… before being scrapped right back. They probably are the cutest pokémon that never existed.



But the icing in the cake is the fact that... Blastoise was not supposed to be Wartortle's evolution! As we discussed before, the non-Bulbasaur starters were added really late into development, while Blastoise was one of the early birds (or, well, turtles). But the two starter late lines weren’t added in neat trios, like the rest of the Era 5 families. Rather, the order is as follows: Charmander-Squirtle-Charmeleon-Wartortle-Charizard… and then there is a Missingno. You can notice a pattern.



It becomes even more intriguing when you notice how the Char family shares the same base cry, which its pitch altered, and both Squirtle and Wartortle do as well- but Blastoise has a completely different one. And then, turns out, the mysterious Missingno that goes where the Wartortle evolution should be has... Squirtle's cry, but with its pitch changed in the same way Charizard's is modified from Charmander's. Indeed, it was supposed to be a Big Wartortle! With the same ears and twirly tail- and cry.



But that’s not all! In spot #172, you find something that looks like a turtle, with what seems to be a bubble on its nose and something that resembles cannons in the back- easily a Blastoise pre-evo. How did the two families get mixed? It is possible to imagine that, during the culling stage, when they narrowed the pokédex down to a neat round 150, they decided to get rid of two “redundant” turtles. But instead of shelving the Blastoise line, they decided to get rid of Big Wartortle and Little Blastoise and repurpose the one turtle they had known for years as the end the Squirtle line.

3- About Mew

There is one last, fascinating topic, in the form of the well-known Mew. The legendary pokémon -easily the biggest urban legend of Gen I- was added, as Shigeki Morimoto said in an 'Iwata Asks' interview, at the very last moment. “We had 300 bytes after removing the debug program, just enough to place Mew in”, he says. And that makes some sense- spot #21 in the index list was once occupied by “Omega”, a Blastoise look-alike reminiscing of the Kaiju monsters of Japanese movies.

Not only that, but the beta list also reveals that, by the time all the 190 pokémon had been programmed (as well as the trainers), Mew was nowhere to be found, and slot #21 was empty. So, indeed, Morimoto’s story matches the facts! Mew seems to have been a last-minute addition, and it’s believable that Omega was one of the earliest “culled” mons, as the Big Bulky Beasts of Era 1 started to feel redundant, and its slot was used for debug tools.

But there is something that doesn’t match the facts: pokémon #131, from Era 4, better known as Mewtwo. How could a ‘second Mew’ have existed years before the ‘first’ one did? According to Morimoto, Mew was supposed to be just a “namedrop” in the Cinnabar Mansion logs. Which means it’s very likely Mew was planned from the start, but they intentionally intended to leave it as a hook for the sequel- dropping hints about its existence at the end of the game (of which Mewtwo would be the clearest one). Maybe Mew would have played a bigger role in Gold and Silver, or been a big continuity reward for players who remembered him from the original games… until Morimoto decided it was even cannier to hid a golden Easter Egg and urban legend. Certainly, it seems he had the better vision.

4 - Giovanni, Blaine and the Mystery Kid

But if the titular pokémon changed, the actual content of the game also went through several stages. Admittedly, it feels as if the team had a very clear idea of how they wanted the games to be- the Kanto Map looks very similar to its final incarnation, and some of the challenges look set from the start. But some things really did change.

One of the biggest questions is… Giovanni. His existence really confuses me to no end. This section is going to be more speculative than anything, but it really, really feels like the charismatic leader of Team Rocket wasn’t supposed to exist at first, with his role occupied by different people. Eventually, he was created and placed in key events -8th gym, Silph Co- where he didn’t initially belong. And his existence caused a strange switch between another gym leader and a dummied-out character… for some reason.

This is all very cryptic. But let’s start with a few pictures from Sugimori himself, shared in his Twitter, of very early concept art of the Gym Leaders:



Here there are our good friends Brock, Misty, Lt. Surge and Erika- so far so good. Except their order is… strange. But here is when the real fun starts.


Hey it's... yeah, him.

Here is a little bit of an unmistakeable Koga and… some strange guy! Who? Well, this guy? Don’t you remember your anime?



Still no idea? Well, it’s Blaine, of course! Haven’t you looked at your instruction booklet?


That's Blaine! Next to THE BROCK

If you are wondering, yeah, you’re right, that’s not how Blaine looks, at all! This is Blaine! So, what is going on?

But wait! There is another picture! Look at this:



There is a kid! As the first gym leader! With Giovanni’s pose, of all things! Really, look at this!



So, we can conclude that, at the beginning of development, the order was Weird Kid – Brock – Misty – Lt. Surge – Erika – Koga – Soldier Blaine – Sabrina. Notice something? There is no Giovanni in the leaders list! Then, who is taking over Silph Co? Why, it’s Chief! Or, in Japanese, “Silph’s Chief”. His name made it into the final games, even, as a dummy trainer that went unused! And how did he look, exactly? Well…



Wait, isn’t that modern-day Blaine? Well it is! Which also explains why Silph’s president shares a sprite with Blaine -and Blaine only- in Yellow!



So, at this point, we can see a faint image of a plot in which Giovanni didn’t exist, the overpowered Psychic gym was the final challenge, and the Silph Co adventure was part of a cunning plan by its own president. But someone thought that having a Gym in Viridian was a bit pointless- after all, you literally had just started the game, so throwing you into a Gym right away wasn’t the best idea. And so Giovanni came into being, reusing the pose originally intended for the kid leader, and eventually replaced Silph’s chief as well. And his dummy sprite, now unused, was given to Blaine, since there already was a military-type leader (and the people doing the booklet didn’t hear about the changes).

Or that is what I’d think, if it wasn’t because… Giovanni already appeared in the first revision of the battle sprite list, when kid leader had a different pose and most Gym Leaders didn’t even exist!



Soo… colour me stumped. Another possibility is that Giovanni was going to have a small role as a Team Rocket leader, up until Celadon, and they put the Silph Co takeover under his list of crimes afterwards. Except that wouldn’t explain why a Rocket grunt name-checks Chief -in all caps, like all other names in the game- in Celadon!



Then there is the fact that Giovanni got his pose before the leader kid did… even though the kid already had that pose in the gym leader concept art! Seriously, I’d like to know exactly what happened.

One last thing. This was Giovanni’s original Gym Leader team, according to the beta info: FARFETCH'D (50), FEAROW (48), DODRIO (46), PIDGEOT (47), AERODACTYL (44). Other than the hilarity of the boss of Team Rocket using a Farfetch’d as his ace, that shows another beta leftover: the Earth Badge… is a feather!



Interestingly, this situation is very similar to that of Ocarina of Time (a game relased around the same time), in which the Forest Temple was originally wind-themed, as you can see in the Forest Medallion -which has wind imagery- and Ganon's "forest" room being full of wind puzzles. I guess that's why they felt bad and made the first gym in G/S a flying-type one.

It seems the mystery of how Giovanni got into his slot as Viridian Gym leader and Silph Co’s invader will remain. But at least we know something: before he liked Dugtrios, he liked Farfetch’d. And that is possibly the closest our dear leek duck has ever been to relevancy. Considering that it was supposed to have an evolution in Gen II that was also scrapped, it seems someone really hated it in Game Freak. Poor Farfetch’d.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago (2:06 PM).
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It's been 5 years since the last time someone edited me so throughoutly, woah, I'm actually impressed.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago (3:02 AM).
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Jumping in quickly that I have saved and re-uploaded all the images in the OP to Daily, so that saves anyone else doing that when it comes to moving the article onto Daily/WordPress.

Good effort! Looking forward to getting this edited and up. Beta stuff is always interesting to me. :B
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Old 2 Weeks Ago (7:07 PM).
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Generally, there's an inconsistency in capitalizing "gym", where in some instances "Gym" is used, and in some "gym" is. Same for "leader", when written together with the former. Also, "Silph Co" should be "Silph Co."

Quote:
Big Bulky Best such as the ill-fated Gyaoon, and #32 looks like a Nidoran Male clone, which makes you wonder, above all: why? Is that an attempt at a non-binary Nido?
Big Bulky Best -> Big Bulky Beast
Nido -> Nidoran

Quote:
whether they were planning on more gendered species other than the Nidos, and
Would change Nidos to Nidoran line

Quote:
[As a Drifloon fan, I’m glad they pulled it off properly three generations later].
Thinking the brackets aren't necessary here.

Quote:
We have three pairs of cute scrapped mons
Pokémon

Quote:
also seen in the beta of Gen II.
Would change it to Gen II beta.

Quote:
We have evos of unmatched pokémon, like the octopus
evos -> evolutions

Quote:
when you notice how the Char family shares the same base cry, which its pitch altered
Would change Char to Charizard and which to with

Quote:
Wartortle evolution should be has... Squirtle's cry
Would remove the ellipsis

Quote:
cannons in the back- easily a Blastoise pre-evo.
evolution

Quote:
But the icing in the cake is the fact that... Blastoise
Would remove the ellipsis

Quote:
How could a ‘second Mew’ have existed years before the ‘first’ one did?
Would put only second within the quotation marks

Quote:
but they intentionally intended to leave it as a hook for the sequel
intentionally is unnecessary here

Quote:
Here there are our good friends
Would remove there

Quote:
Here is a little bit of an unmistakeable Koga
unmistakable

Quote:
That's Blaine! Next to THE BROCK
Exclamation mark's needed at the end

Quote:
And so Giovanni came into being, reusing the pose originally intended
Would add a comma after so,

Quote:
Ocarina of Time (a game relased around the same time)
released

Quote:
the first gym in G/S a flying-type one.
Flying-type

Quote:
a Mikon-like baby mon that was supposed to appear
Pokémon

Those are my findings, and there's probably more. It was an interesting and enjoyable read, and I like how you pulled it.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago (2:53 AM). Edited 2 Weeks Ago by bobandbill.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivysaur
beep
Looking at the second half of Trev's post which was to be done, in the interest of getting the article ready for publication sooner than later. Stuck with the same formatting.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trev View Post
These edits are just for the big paragraphs and the meat of the article. I left captions alones. In regards to suggested edits, feel free to ignore them. They're mostly just changed to wording that make the sentence clearer, but they aren't entirely necessary. May be some overlap with what Aldo pointed out too.

Add
Remove
Changed
Suggestion (hover over to see suggestion)

To be finished:

Spoiler:
Those are some changes! And yet, they mostly match what we knew. The beta Pokémon in the first era look much like the monsters we mentioned before. #31 looks like a generic "big bulky beast"Big Bulky Best such as the ill-fated Gyaoon, and #32 looks like a Nidoran Male clone. It which makes you wonder, above all: why? Is that an attempt at a non-binary Nido?

Then, as we go on, we see that the scrapped Pokémon look very much like you’d expect in all of their “eras”. In Era 2, that of the elemental animals, you get a deer (#56), an elephant (#61), an octopus-like thing (#63), a cactus (#67), a shark (#68), a bat before Zubat existed (#69), and a male Jynx (#52), (which makes you wonder whether they were planning on more gendered species other than the Nidos), and… a vaguely animal-like thing (#62). Also ball Kirby as a balloon (#60), of all things. [As a Drifloon fan, I’m glad they pulled it off properly three generations later].

The more interesting stuff starts in comes starting with Era 3. We have three pairs of cute scrapped mons: two fish-like creatures (#79 and #80), two generic monsters with bulging eyes (#94 and #95) and two that are… frankly indescribable (#86 and #87). But there is one that stands out massively: Mikon (#81), also seen in the beta of Gen II. The baby Vulpix matches the description from the Pokédex in the original games, in which the fox Pokémon is said to be born with one tail which later splits into six. That's a fascinating reference to a pokémon that never made the final list.

Again, Era 4 also matches the overall pattern. We have evos of unmatched Pokémon, like the octopus from earlier (#122), or Psyduck, which apparently had not one, but two evolutions! (#122). The same goes for a Magneton-like Pokémon (#140), and an evolved Marowak that looks like Kangaskhan with a skull (#146). In the same vein, there is what seems an evolved form of the also-scrapped #31 (#137). But there is also a Mikon-like baby mon that was supposed to appear in Gen II: the utterly adorable baby Meowth (#134). Sadness abounds.

And those aren’t the only ones: in Era 5, there is a baby Ponyta (#162) and a baby Goldeen (#156) that were supposed to turn their families into neat groups of three, like most of the new ones added by then. Incidentally, that would also explain Ponyta’s absurd level 40 evolution. There is also the baby form of the bulging eyes duo of Era 3 (#174) and… Gorochu, the evolved form of Raichu! (#175). Some time ago, its existence was revealed in an interview, but it was said to have been removed to “keep the game balanced”. But, remember that infamous line in which, after an in-game trade, a NPC tells you “Your Raichu went and evolved”? Well, even if all signs point at a faulty localisation (in Japanese Blue you are trading a Kadabra and a Haunter), it seems such a thing was actually supposed to happen! Certainly, knowing The Pokémon Company’s obsession with Pikachu, it’d have been a shame if they had ended up neglecting not only one but two evolved forms of the best-known series mascot. At least I’m glad our Alolan pancake boi did get into the family, eventually.

And then… come the two most fascinating families. One is the Kotora line. #159 through #161 were supposed to be three-stage line of an adorable electric tiger that was eventually scrapped. Its third stage was seemingly dumped into the graveyard of beta elements, but the first and second stages, Kotora and Raitora, were given a new lease of life in Gen II… before being scrapped right back. They probably are the cutest pokémon that never existed.



But the icing in the cake is the fact that... Blastoise was not supposed to be Wartortle's evolution! As we discussed before, the non-Bulbasaur Starters were added really late into development, while Blastoise was one of the early birds (or, well, turtles). But the two Starter late lines weren’t added in neat trios, like the rest of the Era 5 families. Rather, the order is as follows: Charmander-Squirtle-Charmeleon-Wartortle-Charizard… and then there is a Missingno. You can notice a pattern.



It becomes even more intriguing when you notice how the Char family shares the same base cry, with which its pitch altered, and both Squirtle and Wartortle do as well - but Blastoise has a completely different one. And then, turns out, the mysterious Missingno that goes where the Wartortle evolution should be has... Squirtle's cry, but with its pitch changed in the same way Charizard's was modified from Charmander's. Indeed, it was supposed to be a big Wartortle! With the same ears, and twirly-shaped tail, and cry.



But that’s not all! In spot #172, you find something that looks like a turtle, with what seems to be a bubble on its nose and something that resembles cannons in the back- easily a Blastoise pre-evo. How did the two families get mixed? It is possible to imagine that, during the culling stage, when they narrowed the Pokédex down to a neat round 150, they decided to get rid of two “redundant” turtles. But instead of shelving the Blastoise line, they decided to get rid of big Wartortle and [COLOR="Orange"l[/COLOR]ittle Blastoise and repurpose the one turtle they had known for years as the end of the Squirtle line.

3- About Mew

There is one last, fascinating topic, in the form of the well-known Mew. The legendary Pokémon - easily the biggest urban legend of gen I - was added, as Shigeki Morimoto said in an 'Iwata Asks' interview, at the very last moment. “We had 300 bytes after removing the debug program, just enough to place Mew in," he says. [Can put into the quote format in the article] And that makes some sense - spot #21 in the index list was once occupied by “Omega”, a Blastoise look-alike reminiscing of the Kaiju monsters of Japanese movies.

Not only that, but the beta list also reveals that, by the time all the 190 Pokémon had been programmed (as well as the Trainers), Mew was nowhere to be found, and slot #21 was empty. So, indeed, Morimoto’s story matches the facts! Mew seems to have been a last-minute addition, and it’s believable that Omega was one of the earliest “culled” mons, as the Big Bulky Beasts of Era 1 started to feel redundant, and its slot was used for debug tools.

But there is something that doesn’t match the facts: Pokémon #131, from Era 4, better known as Mewtwo. How could a ‘second Mew’ have existed years before the ‘first’ one did? According to Morimoto, Mew was supposed to be just a “namedrop” in the Cinnabar Mansion logs. Which means it’s very likely Mew was planned from the start, but they intentionally intended to leave it as a hook for the sequel - dropping hints about its existence at the end of the game (of which Mewtwo would be the clearest one). Maybe Mew would have played a bigger role in Pokémon Gold and Silver, or been a big continuity reward for players who remembered him from the original games… until Morimoto decided it was even cannier to hid a golden easter egg and urban legend. Certainly, it seems he had the better vision.

4 - Giovanni, Blaine and the Mystery Kid

But if the titular pokémon changed, the actual content of the game also went through several stages. Admittedly, it feels as if the team had a very clear idea of how they wanted the games to be - the Kanto Map looks very similar to its final incarnation, and some of the challenges look set from the start. But some things really did change.

One of the biggest questions is… Giovanni. His existence really confuses me to no end. This section is going to be more speculative than anything, but it really, really feels like the charismatic leader of Team Rocket wasn’t supposed to exist at first, with his role occupied by different people. Eventually, he was created and placed in key events - the eightth gym and Silph Co. - where he didn’t initially belong. And his existence caused a strange switch between another Gym Leader and a dummied-out character… for some reason.

This is all very cryptic. But let’s start with a few pictures from Sugimori himself, shared in his Twitter, of very early concept art of the Gym Leaders:



Here there are our good friends Brock, Misty, Lt. Surge and Erika - so far so good. Except their order is… strange. But here is when the real fun starts.


Hey it's... yeah, him.

Here is a little bit of an unmistakeable Koga and… some strange guy! Who? Well, this guy? Don’t you remember your anime?



Still no idea? Well, it’s Blaine, of course! Haven’t you looked at your instruction booklet?


That's Blaine! Next to THE BROCK

If you are wondering, yeah, you’re right, that’s not how Blaine looks, at all! This is Blaine! So, what is going on?

But wait! There is another picture! Look at this:



There is a kid! As the first Gym Leader! With Giovanni’s pose, of all things! Really, look at this!



So, we can conclude that, at the beginning of development, the order was Weird Kid – Brock – Misty – Lt. Surge – Erika – Koga – Soldier Blaine – Sabrina. Notice something? There is no Giovanni in the Leaders list! Then, who is taking over Silph Co.? Why, it’s Chief! Or, in Japanese, “Silph’s Chief”. His name made it into the final games, even, as a dummy trainer that went unused! And how did he look, exactly? Well…



Wait, isn’t that modern-day Blaine? Well it is! Which also explains why Silph’s president shares a sprite with Blaine - and Blaine only - in Yellow!



So, at this point, we can see a faint image of a plot in which Giovanni didn’t exist, the overpowered Psychic gym was the final challenge, and the Silph Co. adventure was part of a cunning plan by its own president. But someone thought that having a Gym in Viridian was a bit pointless - after all, you literally had just started the game, so throwing you into a Gym right away wasn’t the best idea. And so Giovanni came into being, reusing the pose originally intended for the kid leader, and eventually replaced Silph’s chief as well. And his dummy sprite, now unused, was given to Blaine, since there already was a military-type leader (and the people doing the booklet didn’t hear about the changes).

Or that is what I’d think, if it wasn’t because… Giovanni already appeared in the first revision of the battle sprite list, when kid Leader had a different pose and most Gym Leaders didn’t even exist!



Soo… colour me stumped. Another possibility is that Giovanni was going to have a small role as a Team Rocket leader, up until Celadon, and they put the Silph Co. takeover under his list of crimes afterwards. Except that wouldn’t explain why a Rocket grunt name-checks Chief - in all caps, like all other names in the game - in Celadon!



Then there is the fact that Giovanni got his pose before the Gym Leader kid did… even though the kid already had that pose in the Gym Leader concept art! Seriously, I’d like to know exactly what happened.

One last thing. This was Giovanni’s original Gym Leader team, according to the beta info: FARFETCH'D (50), FEAROW (48), DODRIO (46), PIDGEOT (47), AERODACTYL (44). [Why in all caps here? I'd just write these names out normally rather than stick to gen 1 game formatting.] Other than the hilarity of the boss of Team Rocket using a Farfetch’d as his ace, that shows another beta leftover: the Earth Badge… is a feather!



Interestingly, this situation is very similar to that of Ocarina of Time (a game released around the same time), in which the Forest Temple was originally wind-themed, as you can see in the Forest Medallion - which has wind imagery - and Ganon's "forest" room being full of wind puzzles. I guess that's why they felt bad and made the first Gym in GS a Flying-type one.

It seems the mystery of how Giovanni got into his slot as Viridian Gym leader and Silph Co.’s invader will remain. But at least we know something: before he liked Dugtrios, he liked Farfetch’d. And that is possibly the closest our dear leek duck has ever been to relevancy. Considering that it was supposed to have an evolution in Gen II that was also scrapped, it seems someone really hated it in Game Freak. Poor Farfetch’d.
I'd suggest a few links added in as well - for instance, when referring to the interview quoted of Morimoto sneaking in Mew, or reference to gen 2 beta stuff (e.g. Farfetch'd's scrapped evolution).

Overall it's a good read. TIme to apply those changes. =p In the meantime please PM myself or Laslow a desired username and email so we can make an account for you on Daily - you can then put the text into a draft article on Daily with the above changes, we can give it a once-over and make the formatting pretty, and then we can publish!

We'll also need a cover image for the article - any ideas? It could be one of the images already here, as long as it's of a decent size.
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Old 2 Weeks Ago (2:09 AM). Edited 2 Weeks Ago by Ivysaur.
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Well, I think I did everything! Soemone check the whole thing isn't broken. By which I mean, waiting for approval.
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Old 1 Week Ago (3:17 AM).
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Well, I think I did everything! Soemone check the whole thing isn't broken. By which I mean, waiting for approval.
Letting you know that it's taking a bit longer because we're going the fancier longform route (you chose the article format to be that, which requires more work to look good (custom CSS), but Jake is working on that! So we're doing the full hog). So the article will look nicer than most. https://daily.pokecommunity.com/?p=21215&preview=true is the preview link btw - still a WIP.
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Old 1 Week Ago (3:08 PM).
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Oooh nice.

One thing though: I put some of my wittiest captions in "alternate text", or whatever it's called when you hover over the image and you get a small text box appearing next to your cursor. Can it be made to show up?
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