Thursday, March 14, 2013
#0068: Pokemon Silver Version
In April of 2011, I decided to do an odd thing. I scavenged about the closet, unearthed my Game Boy Advance, and popped in my old Pokemon games. Did I intend to play them, seeking a surge of nostalgia? No, not exactly. After all, the first two generations have since been faithfully recreated, and I'm actually still in the middle of my Heart Gold run-through. In actuality, I kind of wanted to look through my legions of old Pokemon, just for shits and giggles.
I'd sunk about 200 hours into Pokemon Silver Version, and boy, what a time I'd had. Back in the days when Pokemon was still the exciting thing, the second edition certainly delivered on all fronts: new Pokemon, new abilities, the revelation that your darling little princess Clefable may actually have a wang... It was all terribly exciting, wasn't it?
And so, I fondly surveyed the contents of my PC boxes. My Typhlosion, the starter Pokemon who would join me as I trekked through this uncharted new region... Reddy, the cleverly named shiny crimson Gyarados... and of course, my Quagsire was in there somewhere. I adored that Quagsire. She was dopey as fuck, with this great big grin on her face; a veritable Brad Garrett of Pokemon.
But where in the hell was she? She wasn't among my party. She wasn't sitting in the Water or Ground-type boxes. She wasn't even on a vacation over on my Crystal version. She was nowhere. ...My Quagsire... was dead. In my misery, I wrote her a touching eulogy.
Pokemon Silver claimed my Quagsire far before her time. She was going to be celebrating her eleventh birthday this year. She was so beautiful. She loved to Rollout. So young, so innocent.
In memory of Nautica the Quagsire
Fast forward to today, and I thought I'd pay the Johto region another visit. But it would seem as though the cruel hand of fate has plagued this once pristine part of the world, and claimed another victim. And this time, that victim was the Johto champion, ANTHONY, trainer #15939.
Yes, it would seem as though the entire save file has disappeared, and with it, the Typhlosion, the Umbreon, the Crobat... Every last one, gone. Professor Oak approaches, but he's practically unrecognisable. He once lived an existence of great joy and unbridled passion, reviewing the progress ANTHONY had made on his Pokedex. But now, he is a shadow of his former self. He asks you for your name. He mutters something about the world of Pokemon. He hands you the ghastly corpse of a Chikorita. Then he shuffles off into the dark recesses of his dilapidated laboratory.
The world that once looked so vivid seems to only contain 56 colours, all of them melancholy. New Bark Town has only a few scattered inhabitants, who are all wandering back and forth aimlessly, their eyes glassy and pixelated. Strangely, though, people seem to be going about their day in much the same way they had back at the turn of the millennium.
They tell you about recently discovered Pokemon like Marill and Natu. They talk about the exciting new technology of the Poke Gear. They're listening to Sisqó as if he were relevant. However, mentioning the name ANTHONY only receives confusion and indifference. Why, it's as if you've jumped back in time to a perverse version of the past, one where ANTHONY never received that Cyndaquil, never bested Lance at the Pokemon League, and never prevented the uprising of Team Rocket.
He's been erased from the memory of everyone in the world! ...Which is odd, considering that he's also the champion of Kanto, Hoenn and Unova. He would have been the Sinnoh region champion as well, but I decided to name him MR. BUTTS instead. Hahaha! Butts.
I shan't dally for long. Clearly, my very presence here, with my fancy new iPod and Terrence Ross Raptors jersey, is causing suspicion. I'm a practical paradox, and my Game Boy Advance isn't backlit, so I can't make out a damn thing anyway. Tears in my eyes, I take out my Poke Ball, and release my Swellow, ready for it to fly me away from this horrible place.
Unfortunately, Swellow doesn't exist yet. The save file is now corrupted, and New Bark Town is renamed HW!%RRR!PWWW. Fuck.
I hope you're out there somewhere, ANTHONY. Still farming those Charmanders. Still giving those Pokemon the horrible movesets you thought were so tactful as a twelve year old. Still nicknaming Hoothoot as Lugia, and trading it to unsuspecting children. You old dick, you.