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Tesla avatar 4:09 PM on 03.08.2011  (server time)
The World of Pokémon is Secretly Terrifying

I love pokemon. If you’re reading this, you probably love pokemon. Pokemon is great for what it is, a beautiful game that has its own special shortcut to my hypothalamus.

It does, however, have a deep, not-so-dark secret.

True Pokemon Battles aren’t like in the video games.

For starters, let’s look at the world of pokemon. Very little about it is actually known, but it’s pretty obvious to anyone who’s ever played it that it’s set in some sort of confused futuristic society. I say confused because while they seem to take the technology of instantaneous teleportation for granted, you do manage to spot the occasional car or train. Why do they even need cars? They don’t have roads! In fact, every region we’ve seen is really little more than a large, populated park. They take like twenty minutes to walk (unhindered) from left to right, and when was the last time you’d ever seen a municipal building (pokemon centers aside) in any of the many towns and cities? The pokemon world has no government, no bank system (more on that in a moment), and very little to do for leisure unless you enjoy torturing small animals. Hell, the only public swimming pool we’ve ever seen to my knowledge, doubled as a pokemon gym. So yeah, kid, enjoy the water, hope you don’t get hit by a stray hydro pump!

When I’m playing pokemon, I never have to worry about the monetary system. It’s the only RPG I’ve ever played, in which I’ve never struggled to make ends meet. I just strap on the old amulet coin every time I get to a gym, and I can afford enough Protein to shut down my Pignite’s kidneys. How does their financial system even work? How can they survive the strain of hundreds or thousands of trainers cashing in on elaborate medical equipment and (what I assume to be) highly advanced technology on a daily basis? From what I can tell, their main currency (the PokeDollar, I’m told) is backed by pokemon battles. They even have pokemon that can spontaneously generate money, and that’s not even for spending.

He's about to make it RAIN!

In Piers Anthony’s short story In The Barn, we are introduced to an alternate universe in which some people are taken and intentionally handicapped, and raised as livestock. In the world of Pokemon, we have a similar situation, except instead of our fellow humans, we’ve somehow managed to subvert a relatively superior species of intelligent, superpowered monsters. Their slavery even goes so far that they are captured and forced to fight one another, for nought but amusement. This has become this world’s only notable sport. In Black and White, I was surprised to find a sports stadium; This turned out to be a not much more than a tiny basketball court, where the three players were either standing around or - you guessed it - battling pokemon.

Some final words before I allow you return to your cruel tyranny, fellow pokemen. How much longer do you believe the pokemon world can last, balancing precariously on the backs of the thousands of forgotten, speechless Gurdurrs and Magnemites? How many more times do you believe your Charmander will follow your command to its doom, before it turns on its master? Do you really trust your Chatot to fly you and its fallen comrades to the nearest pokemon center safely every time?

Friends, I leave you with a thought for you to chew on; N was right all along.

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