Striaton City- Three stand together as one! Except not really.
As you can see, (if you squint a bit anyway,) Striaton City proper consists of four apartment buildings, the Pokecenter, the Pokemon Academy on the left and the Gym on the right- we'll come back to the Gym. The other half of Striaton City is a big park- I'll grant you that it is a lovely park, but considering the fact that this park is as big as the rest of the city, it seems rather excessive.
In accordance with my established modus operandi, the very first thing I do in town (apart from heal up at the Pokecenter) is to explore all the alleys and unimportant buildings for loot. I snag a Dusk Ball from a random hobo (a Dusk Ball being an oddly situational Pokeball) and a Great Ball from an old guy in an otherwise uninteresting apartment building. The next apartment building is apparently the home of Fennel- I say apparently because a small child keeps me from exploring further.
Since the Plot demands that I explore elsewhere, I decide to head to the next-most-uninteresting building- the Pokemon Academy. The Pokemon Academy is a fine tradition that extends all the way back to Generation I- basically, it is a tutorial building where NPC's, textbooks, and/or a chalkboard contain some basic information about Pokemon Battling. And I mean basic
- here, the talk of the town is status effects like Sleep or Poison. On the plus side, the teacher gives me a full heal after I answer a few questions about status effects.
Surprise surprise, Cheren is studying the blackboard when I walk in.
Hey Monk, I've been studying to be a better trainer. Care to help me experiment with how held items work in battle?
Yeah, sure, lets get this over with.
A thoroughly uninteresting battle ensues. Cheren leads with Snivy and follows up with a Purrloin- both are dispatched with ease. Since they were holding berries, however, this fight took me a little longer than it otherwise would have.
Purrloin, huh? I knew you always wanted a pussy.
Those berries were pretty cool though- wherever did you find them?
They're around, you just have to know where to look. Here, have some.
Cheren, nice guy that he is, hooks me up with 3 Oran Berries. The suckers are good for 10 hp, and for those unfamiliar with the mechanic (introduced in Gen II) they can be held by a Pokemon and used automatically when their health dips too low.
Thanks for that- I was rather disappointed that the Pokemart here has the same selection here as in Accumula Town.
Haven't you heard? By order of the Champion, battle items are restricted for sale, based on the number of Gym Badges a Trainer has. The edict came down a few days ago.
What? That's ludicrous- how is any Trainer supposed to get ahead if they can't buy the same items as other Trainers?
Easy answer- they don't. It's another law intended to protect the old order and prevent trainers from getting far enough to make a formal Challenge.
Bother- this is going to make the first Gym that much more difficult.
Actually, we've caught a break there. The former Earl of Striaton passed away a few months ago, and split his estate equally between his three sons. They've been quite vocal in their disagreements with the new laws, and actively work to undermine their effects.
That's monstrous! They're supposed to uphold the law, not subvert it!
You can't deny it is fortunate for us, though. Striaton's Gym handles challenges as an educational experience for the challenger, and the Leaders treat each challenge as a trial to determine whether a Trainer is worthy of continuing the Pokemon League Challenge.
Well, I suppose it doesn't matter either way. I'm off to challenge them now.
Good luck- I'm going to stick around here for a while first- there is so much to learn!
With that, I head off to the Gym.
Is that a spoon? I think that's a spoon.
At the door, I'm greeted by one of the Gym Leaders.
Hello, I'm Cilan! I'm one of the Gym Leaders here- are you coming to make a challenge?
Why yes, yes I am. My name is Monk.
Very good! I see from your file that your first Pokemon was... Oshawott? Am I pronouncing that right? Oh-sha-wat?
I think its an "ah" sound, actually.
Ah, right, got it. Anywho, looks like you need practice fighting Grass Types, so that is what I'll put you up against.
Oh come on, seriously? I've got an otter and a dog, and you're going to pull the type advantage card on me?
Oh, you haven't heard? My brothers and I have opened up our ancestral Pokemon Ranch to the public- we've been breeding monkies there for generations, and with the recent laws and scarcity of Pokemon we felt this would be the best course for everyone. You can pick up a fire type there- just head out to the Dreamyard.
That's cool, I guess. I'll be back to kick your ass.
The Dreamyard is an area off to the east of Striaton City. There are a couple of trainers and a bunch of areas I can't get to without Cut or Strength or something. Fighting the trainers, I learn that there is some rare Pokemon around here- although I'd like a crack at it, I know I'm not likely to survive the first Gym without some kind of type advantage.
Although after getting a look at the fire monkey I got, maybe I should have refused it anyway. See, when he said "monkey" I was expecting a fire themed version of this.
Ten pounds of "fuck your shit" in a five pound bag
What I got, however, was this.
I knew allowing Pokemon to cross-breed was a bad idea
Seriously now, what the hell is this shit? Dude's got a turd on his head, big Dumbo ears, mitten hands, devil tail, and just to fit in he's got a terrible color scheme. Judging by expression on his face, he just shat himself and is vaguely pleased. And you know what he's called? Pansear. That's right- since ancient times, the Unovans have referred to this animal by the same process they use to cook its delicious flesh. And now I'm going to use it to become Champion. I am disappoint.
A name, a name, uhhhhh... Mojo Jojo?
[I will cut you if you go with that]
No objections? Mojo Jojo it is then!
Mojo Jojo- Rash, Quick Tempered. Ability: Gluttony- encourages the early use of a held berry. I can't think of a situation in which I'd want my Pokemon to eat berries sooner rather than later. Further inspection of his move set reveals that they're pretty weak- this guy may be a powerhouse later on, but not now. Still, should be enough to get me through this Gym.
Some arduous, uninteresting grinding gets everybody up to level 12, and although I really want to have a level advantage heading into this fight I simply cannot stand to grind higher at 20xp a pop. Time to throw down at the Gym.
This is an opportune moment to compare the first gym leaders of Gen I and Gen V. We will, as always, be ignoring the anime, manga, remakes, and any other supplemental material.
That confident bastard there is Brock, leader of the Pewter City Gym. As you can see, he's a no-nonsense young gent in a vest and pants- yes, clothing actually made sense in the first generation. As I recall, he didn't have a shirt on in the first games, but that's because he was getting ready to jump in the ring and kick your Pokemon's ass himself. His name conjours up images of an unshakable boulder, and more importantly is rather intimidating if you yell it, as I'm sure Brock did before every match. He's young, which is why his Pokemon are such low level, but he specializes in Rock type Pokemon.
For those a bit rusty on their element types, this means he was weak to both Grass and Water type moves, and if you picked the appropriate starter you could get by him fairly easily, perhaps a potion worse for wear. If you picked Charmander, however... well, then you were in a mess. Rock types have high Defense, and don't give a damn about fire type attacks. Prior to his Gym, your options for Pokemon to fight him with consist of birds, rats, a forest full of bugs, and maybe, if you are very very
lucky, a Mankey or Pikachu. None of these are particularly helpful in this situation, and if you don't come with your A-game Brock could easily wipe the floor with you. If Brock wasn't your Wake-up Call Boss
, then either Misty was or you picked Bulbasaur.
But I digress- we should be discussing the formidable opponent you face in Striaton City.
Remember that spoon on the Gym? That is because most days, this gym is a restaurant, and these chumps are waiters. Not owners, mind you, nor managers, nor cooks- waiters
. Minimum wage plus tips. These guys took a part time job and mixed it with death sports to make a career. That would almost be cool, if their uniforms reflected this infusion of badass- as things stand you could be forgiven if you thought they were wearing skirts. Allow me to formally introduce them- from left to right, their names are Chili, Cress, and Cilan. That's right- they're named after vegetables. Not even good vegetables- garnishes, those things you don't really want but come with the plate to make your steak and fries look healthier. Chili looks like he's ready to kick somebody in the balls, but Cress and Cilan look like they're in the mood for a little menage a trois. In particular, I thought Cress was a chick for a while, and had to look it up to be sure. Google Images certainly didn't help with this preconception, with all the gender-bending going on there. Just looking at them, I figured this Gym would be a push-over. After all, they aren't even full time
Anywho, upon entering the Gym I'm greeted by the Maitre'D, who presents me with a complementary glass of water. This is better than it sounds
, however, as Fresh Water heals for 50hp, more than enough at this level. The "puzzle" for this Gym is that the Gym is divided up by curtains with a picture of either a leaf, fire, or water drop on them, representing the basic triumvirate of Pokemon. To progress you need only stand on the tile that is strong against the curtain.
Although tempted to see what happens if you tread on the incorrect tile, I decide to save the time and head through the Gym. There are two other Trainers in this Gym, a waiter and waitress. Nobody is eating at any of the tables, which means that either the food is terrible or the Leaders have an odd collective fetish. Each of those trainers gives me a bad moment, though, as their Pokemon use Bide (a move that involves a Pokemon sacrificing a turn to receive an enemies attack, and then dealing double that damage the following turn) and I incorrectly estimate how much damage I can deal in a turn. Incidentally, there doesn't seem to be a coherent theme to this gym, as these Trainers use the same Lillipups and Purrloins the schmucks on Route 2 used. I polish them off easily enough, and proceed on to the final chamber- the chamber of the Gym Leaders.
NEXT TIME: Cilan
Nuvema Town- "Marvin", Oshawott
Route 1- XXX
Accumula Town- ??
Route 2- "Pompey", Lillipup
Striaton City- ??
Dreamyard- "Mojo Jojo", Pansear
Criticism, Comments, Suggestions welcome as always. This update is a little shorter than normal, but I wanted to give the gym fight + aftermath special attention instead of cramming it in here.