Pokémon WITS
A video series on the sad
downfall of Pokémon design


Welcome to the fourth and final episode of Pokémon WITS. I won't be discussing any particular topic this time around, just voicing my own feelings and giving this series a proper send off.


Ideas come to me. As an artist, they rush toward me like drowning people to a row boat. Unfortunately, just as a row boat can only hold so many, my creative to-do list is already swamped with more projects than I'll ever be able to finish in my lifetime. So when the idea for Pokémon WITS first came to me, it was my natural impulse to push it back into the proverbial water and forget about it. Video creation is a time-consuming artform after all, and besides, I was fairly certain no one would give a crap about what I had to say anyway. Yet, here I am. Why? Well, Pokémon has been a HUGE part of my life since early 1999. I honestly can't begin to describe what a major influence it's had on me--I won't even bother trying. But it's because it's been so important to me that my feelings about its decline were also important to me, and why I couldn't just ignore the idea behind WITS.

My original plans for this series included at least two more episodes. Episode 4, The Decline of Design, would have showcased Pokémon I can't stand, and how each new generation introduces more of them than the previous did. Episode 5 was to be a sort of grand finale, where I intended to go one by one through the entire 6th generation, unscripted and live (so to speak), picking my theoretical X & Y team, no doubt ending in an epic facepalm at the results.

So, why am I cutting things short? No, it's not for lack of time, nor for lack of views on these videos. It's because I realized something during the creation of episode 3; it turns out WITS was satisfying a deeper need than my simply wanting to state some artistic opinions; it was the need for me to say a proper farewell to Pokémon.

As disappointed as I was in the 6th generation, it never occurred to me that Pokémon as I knew it was over. Then came the announcement of Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire. Cool, I thought, those old games will be remade like Gold and Silver were, and the Pokémon and world will be in full, smooth 3D, and it'll all be great. Unfortunately, what followed on the news sites were not exciting glimpses of upgraded Ruby and Sapphire versions, so much as a long string of new Mega-Evolutions. Seriously, there were screenshots and videos of the game in action, but all the big headlines, all the hype, was about adding to the Mega-Evolution roster. For those who liked X & Y and Mega-Evolutions, they were telling customers, "Hey, this old game isn't what you remember, it's full of all this new stuff!" But what they were telling me was, "Hey, don't bother reliving the adventure you loved, because we're changing it with a bunch of shit you won't like."

Up to that point I'd been seeing the 6th gen as the Pokémon games having simply taken a wrong turn down a road where I wasn't willing to follow. What I finally realized with Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire is that even if Pokémon returns to the main road--with a 7th gen full of epic awesome and great designs--the consequences of that wrong turn will never go away. They'll continue to taint the Pokémon experience from now on.

Once upon a time I absolutely loved the Pokémon anime, but it became so formulaic and idiotic that I stopped watching it. Once upon a time I passionately collected the Pokémon trading cards, but the artwork on the cards kept getting crappier, and they pumped new series out like there was no tomorrow, so I stopped buying them. Looking back on those instances, I should have realized that the games would also reach a point where enough is enough. For my tastes, they have. It's sad, and yet, not so sad. All good things must come to an end, and after all, I've gotten so much out of Pokémon. I still have fond memories and five great generations of games I can always play, and will.

So even though I shouldn't have, I'm really glad I went ahead with Pokémon WITS, because it's been a great sort of closure for me. What I said at the beginning of this episode about giving this series a proper send off, I was actually talking about Pokémon, not WITS. Thank you, Pokémon, for everything you've been and meant to me these past 16 years!

Thanks for watching Pokémon WITS!

Also, visit Sneasel Plushie! for Pokémon fan art!