Intriguing Pokemon designs that never made it into the Detective Pikachu movie - Dexerto
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Intriguing Pokemon designs that never made it into the Detective Pikachu movie

Published: 30/May/2019 13:31 Updated: 30/May/2019 13:55

by Paul Cot

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The Pokemon Movie: Detective Pikachu showed Pokemon in a new light with its ultra-realistic spin, but some designs never made it into the film.

It has been fascinating to see a real-life take on the Pokemon that until the movie were mainly seen in 2D graphics. As Pokemon in a real-life scenario look very different from their animated counterparts, the supposed real-life versions could have looked very different.

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In the build up to Detective Pikachu, designers would have needed to provide several drafts of each Pokemon to make sure it fits in with the movie. A few of these design have been making the rounds on social media.

Warner BrosVenusaur as it did appear in Detective Pikachu…
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Scary Venusaur

Some of you may have seen the terrifying version of Venusaur – understandably this didn’t fit with the film and never made it in there. This is in contrast to Venusaur’s eventual design which is considered cute.

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The artist who designed this Venusaur, and many other designs that did appear, was RJ Palmer. “This was my design for Venusaur on Detective Pikachu. This was during a period where I was free to explore a more naturalistic approach,” Palmer said. He also admits that this design would have been too scary for the tone of the movie.

Pikachu could have looked different

The biggest difference between the first and final design of Pikachu was his cheeks. Palmer was very into the idea of Pikachu having bald cheeks to conduct lightning.

Of course the Pikachu that appeared in the film had fluffy skin all over, a decision that Palmer believes was correct, saying: “I don’t think it would have worked nearly as well as the final design.”

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RJ PalmerAn older design of Pikachu itself.

Grookey, Scorbunny and Sobble realistic designs

The starter Pokemon for the upcoming 2019 game of course didn’t appear in the film. However, Palmer did create their realistic designs to feed the curiosity of Pokemon fans.

The three Pokemon Sword and Shield starters look like they could have easily been part of the movie. The latest versions of each can be seen in Palmer’s tweet below.

Pokemon: Detective Pikachu is still out in cinemas now. While fan reaction to the film has been widely positive, it has received average feedback from official review sites. IMDB rate it 7/10 while Metacritic give it a percentage score of 53%.

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Pokemon Go: Legendary Pokemon are getting even rarer

Published: 13/Oct/2020 15:36 Updated: 13/Oct/2020 15:37

by Paul Cot

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In recent times Legendary Pokemon have been made what they should have been all along in Pokemon Go – rare.

There was a time in Pokemon Go when getting those legendary ‘mons became all too common and easy. This resulted in it becoming a mundane task – something which getting one should never be.

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Research Breakthrough rewards were introduced to the mobile game in April 2018. You can obtain these rewards by earning seven Field Research stamps.

Only one can be earned per day and you get one for completing any Field Research task. As anyone who has completed these before can attest to, they are often very easy to do.

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From April 2018 until December 2019, the majority of these months had a Legendary Pokemon waiting for you when you earned those seven stamps. This meant you could earn an encounter with the likes of Moltres, Latios, Groudon – and any other of the litany of legends that featured – for completing seven simple tasks.

If you routinely played, this meant a new Legendary Pokemon every seven days. It was no wonder Legendary Pokemon lost their allure.

Lugia Zapdos Articuno Moltres Pokemon Go
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Easy to obtain Legendary Pokemon are a thing of the past in Pokemon Go…

Make Legendary Pokemon rare again

From January 2020 though, legendary species no longer featured as the Research Breakthrough encounter reward. Niantic likely realized they were too easy to get and wanted to make getting them mean something again.

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Generally, this made them only obtainable in Raid Battles. This made sense because with rare ‘mons so easy to get hold of previously, fewer trainers would spend the time to get them in the more difficult route of Raid Battles. This is in addition to them costing real money/PokeCoins if you did more than one a day.

It hasn’t stopped there, however. It looks like Niantic want to make them even rarer. Many trainers will have noticed five-star Raids are appearing far less frequently.

This hasn’t been confirmed in any official capacity but there is plenty of anecdotal evidence from the Pokemon Go community. “[I] was in an area with over 25 gyms but could only find 2 Giratina during 5 [a] hour period this afternoon,” MarinaBlu shared. They did note a lot more Mega Raids were appearing during that time.

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Encouraging Mega Raids?

There could be multiple reasons for this. Firstly, it will make trainers jump on Raid Battles that feature Legendary Pokemon, stopping the often empty lobbies which single trainers have to avoid.

Then there could be an element of wanting to make Legendary Pokemon even more desirable. This is understandable but certainly puts newer players at a disadvantage. After all, experienced trainers will have a lot stocked up. They would argue this is deserved, however, due to the time they have put into the game.

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Finally, it could be Niantic are trying to encourage trainers to play more Mega Raids. The concept of Mega Evolution in Pokemon Go hasn’t been received as well as the developers would have hoped, though.

We don’t know if the reduced five-star Raid Battles will carry on, but it’s definitely something to keep an eye on.