January 26, 2021 (Originally posted on Neocities)
Here we are back in the fully sprite-based games and in the Game Boy world. I think at this point, the series was at a bit of a drop so they wanted to promote things a bit more, and this eventually led the first set of many remakes for the initial two games, and all the remakes that would come after in a kind of tradition. We've still yet to see the remakes for Generation 4, but Generation 3 certainly had their remakes already, weirdly enough in what seemed to be another valley in popularity, if not for that whole Pokémon GO thing that followed. However, this was before smartphones were as prevalent as they are now, and kids still carried around Game Boys for entertainment, unless they could only get those Tiger handhelds or whatever else was the weird alternative until Sony gave portables a go. Anyway, Generation 3 Pokémon designs. They're something.
The usual scoring system from 1 to 5, from least favorite to top pick.
Most generations start with the starters. This one is no different.
A weird-looking gecko. Its head seems really tall and it kind of looks like a butt on its head.
A leafy lizard, now a bit more lizard-like with a not as tall head. It has a nice color scheme that's not just neon.
Back to a weirder lizard design, it has giant head fins and a big brushy tail now. Its back is covered in balls, but not in a vulgar manner.
It's a small baby chick and that's just adorable. It's fluffy and at one point had weird flappy ears.
This fiery cock is a bit silly, from its bulging thighs to its relatively tall and erect body and finally the spurt of feathers on the tip of its head. It has a funny flat face with a short beak that it can thrust forward for a peck like a prick. This isn't a particularly hard design to swallow, but it never stood firm apart from the awkward middle forms that usually penetrate the starters overall.
This chicken is kickin', or in the uncut version, Popeye's Chicken is fuckin' awesome, though I honestly haven't had as much luck when I've gone there. This chicken is tall, has angry eyebrows, and a fluffy groin. Somehow it was also merged with Latias at one point.
Yes, I do like this one. It's a fun mud fish frog, and of course cute. I eventually decided to pick it when I went through Alpha Sapphire.
The bigger Mudkip has a more expressive face, even if the face mostly shows joy and awkward staring. I feel like this whole evolution family lends itself to memes.
A big fish frog, it's strong and chunky and could crush in a hug. It's also probably fun to ride, and still capable of some good expressions.
Here's a collection of "common" types, including birds, bugs, and some kinds of small mammals.
It's a small grumpy puppy. Puppies can be cute, but this one's fine.
Now it's just gray dog. An okay design. I'd want to pet one maybe, because dogs are dogs.
This zigzag fluffy raccoon dog is very cute. It later joined the band Kiss in Galar, but I think I still prefer the simpler brown version. I just want to pet this funny puppy. Also it's great at playing fetch with expensive items.
A fast ferret dog that's cute and invokes Appa from Avatar, as in the cartoon, not any of the movies. It's fluffy and not a part of Kiss at this point.
A small worm with spike legs and a butt face. It only reaches its full potential when it enters party worm mode, complete with a party hat and dance moves.
Cocoon mon designs used to be very "meh". This is one of them. The art and the sprites would imply that it has silk spikes, but it turns out that this is just a generic lump. Not even an endearing lump to me.
It's a butterfly. We've had butterflies in previous and future generations, and I don't see a lot that makes this one stand out, aside from how it not only drinks nectar but the blood of its victims.
What if Silcoon was purple and slightly angrier? That's what this is. Purple is a nice color but it's very similar to the counterpart.
A weird moth with a creepy face where I can't tell if those are holes or spots on its eyes, and it goes with an eternally gaping mouth.
Here's a bizarre lilypad duck that also has six legs for some reason. Also its beak isn't quite where its mouth is. Still cute and fun enough, though.
Now it's like some weird duck monkey child? I don't even know what this is meant to be, unless it's meant to be based on the kappa from mythology, and if not, I have no idea. Just a bit too weird and humanoid or monkey-like. I'm not typically into monkey mons.
It's a large pineapple duck with oven mitts, and that somehow became unappealing to me. I like ducks, I'm not too sure about this thing though. It's really only notable for being a signature monster of a disco dancer in Colosseum.
It's an acorn, but with eyes and short feet. It's a design all right.
Nipples. Nuzleaf has nipples. Somehow the game wasn't totally banned for that though. There was already Miltank with even bigger nipples. The rest of the design is okay I guess. Also it's part of the reason why a Nuzlocke is called as such.
What a weird fuzzy bush demon. I get that it's meant to resemble traditional Japanese demons of some kind, down to having some weird feet that resemble sandals, but it's not quite put together in a way that makes the most of it. Mainly it's just disturbing.
It's an angry-looking bird with kind of a wide beak. About as simple as it can be for common bird mons.
The bird is larger and looks more smug than angry. About as simple as it can be for the evolution of a common bird mon.
It's a seagull that's mostly head and beak, with long straight wings attached. You might not know that the wings can bend given how it tends to be shown, and usually now it just hovers in a T pose in a certain quality animation.
A pelican with a fittingly large beak that somehow extends all the way down to its body. Yet it's still also separate. Something about coloring maybe. It's still mostly head and beak in this case.
And now a bunch of other monsters which are also common sometimes, but not always.
It turns out this small green-haired baby does have eyes, they're just hard to see. It's pretty much a baby with legs made of cloth.
Now it's a ballerina dancer that is constantly doing this steppy toe dance in the games. This one definitely has eyes.
Here's a design that people really latched onto, and may have led to the likes of Lucario and Lopunny in the next generation, and similar ones to those later on. Looking back, I feel like Generation 4 got remarkably horny for the time and they tried to carry some level of that new tradition along here and there later on. This one's very feminine in appearance, but can still be male, yet they felt the need to make a specifically male alternate in the next generation as well. Long story short, it's a wispy green person with a giant chest spike, and that's just okay I guess.
It's small and cute, but has a weird bowl cut with a single hair sticking up. It's a bit like taking Alfalfa from the Little Rascals and making a water bug from that.
Still cute, but now flying, and it looks a bit like an alien in a jumpsuit, complete with giant angry eyes stuck to its head for decoration. Maybe more reminiscent of the sea butterfly, something I learned about more from Animal Crossing.
It's a grumpy stump. It looks fluffy but have caution when petting it because it might have one of those annoying "inflict every status on contact" abilities, which were really annoying before the physical/special split.
A fun shroomy kangaroo. It has super stubby arms that can stretch out to actually be used in punches, and it's overall cute with its funny beak-like face.
It's a lazy sloth. Sloths are fun. I like sloths. I still prefer the real thing though.
The sloth has gotten rambunctious and maybe reminiscent of a crazed baboon.
The sloth is lazy once more, but is now a fat gorilla. This mon is a weird ride, flipping between lazy and hyperactive. I also haven't been much into primate mons, so it pretty much just becoming a gorilla is just slightly disappointing. Really could have gone more sloth-like.
It's a bug. It's cute and may or may not have cicada-like qualities. I've really only seen cicadas in Animal Crossing anyway.
This bug looks both more like a cicada but mostly like a wasp to me. It has red beady eyes and is cute in that way but also shows the signs of a bug you really don't want to be close to. It also ties in with a very interesting mon that appears under the right conditions when Nincada evolves into this.
This one's interesting just in being a haunted shell, while still being a bit cute. It just kind of exists, and nobody really knows what it's up to, but don't look at the hole in its back or it eats your soul. However this is totally ignored in battle where Pokémon typically fight with their backs to their Trainers, except for Mawile. I wonder if it would take a lesson from Mawile and fight better with its back facing the opponent, even if it just keeps stealing souls that way. If there's some kind of regulation preventing this, I don't know it. Alternatively, if it has to have its back facing its Trainer, maybe just stick a piece of paper over it.
A weird creepy lump of purple with rabbit ears. It has a bizarrely-shaped mouth, no eyes but rather what looks like stitches that would have held them in, and is overall a stubby round thing. It's an odd mix of creepy and cute that didn't quite hit the right notes with me, but it's notable.
Now a more "normal" monster that has eyes, a hippo mouth, and ear speakers. Not the last time that type of ears would come up. It's a pretty basic level "sound monster" design.
Now the monster is just covered in tubes. It's like if Gengar was designed later on and someone just really had a thing for tubes while drawing it.
The best thing about this design is how it's probably someone making a visual pun on a punching bag, as in this thing looks like a bag that can punch. It's very chunky, being a sack of something.
It's interesting to see Fighting type monsters that aren't just entirely "just punch stuff", as this one's more based around sumo. Of course this one will probably just punch stuff, though, as far as games go.
Marill, but it's sad and tiny and doesn't have the white belly. At least it's sad in a lot of the official art that shows up for whatever reason. Stop making it sad. Still cute, though, and can apparently change sex through evolution in some older games at least, so that's interesting.
Here's a rock thing that walks and has a bright red nose. Pretty much designed as a compass face thing I guess. It also has a bunch of holes on its limbs for some reason, in addition to ear holes.
It's a cute cat that's happy and squinting from happiness like happy cats do. That is cute, but overall this design is still mainly a cat, but with a weird tail.
The cat can now open its eyes and wears a weird neck pillow for some reason.
It's a gem gremlin. A gemlin? It has diamond eyes and grabs at things with grabby hands and eats gems somehow. It also has an incredibly toothy smile which is just cute.
Mawile is super cute. It's like a small monster kid, with a funny but cute nose and mouth shape, looking like it's wearing a robe with its fuzzy legs, and complete with giant snapping jaws on its head. This design of course comes from some interesting mythology. This mon actually fights with its back to its opponent, dangerous side facing away from its Trainer, unlike Shedinja.
A tiny dino. It's metal and cute. I would want to pet it and hold it, despite it being very dense.
Grumpy dino lizard. It grew up and is still cute. I'd still want to pet it, but holding it is very unlikely now unfortunately.
Big tough angry-looking dino lizard, but still probably happy. Even with all the spikes it's just so cute to me. Even as tall as it is, it's a heavy and chunky design that makes it look huggable.
A weird meditating psychic being. It's pretty much a small humanoid that meditates nearly constantly. It has a funny face if it stares.
What if Jynx had a more defined shape that was really focused on the hips? That's pretty much this thing. Extra thicc, as the term goes. As in literally entirely hips, the rest is noodles. Even the feet are tiny.
It's a green electric dog that barks. Maybe more like a tiger in this form.
Even more like a dog now, but with a funny haircut. Also blue instead of green, except for the yellow hair parts.
Here's where the whole idea of a Pikaclone really took off. The previous generation may have had something called "Pikablu" and a baby Pikachu, but these were both unrelated and electric, while still keeping the cheeked-mouse design. This one is a plus version, coming in either red or pink accents, depending on lighting I guess.
This one's a lot like Plusle, but a minus version. They pair together and are meant to be mascots for the whole concept of double battles.
Most of my annoyance towards this is its tendency to spam Confuse Ray, along with its counterpart. However, the design is okay. It's a firefly type thing. It has weird hair that looks like a giant inflatable collar tube thing. Also Volbeat is a band. I think the band came first.
The counterpart of Volbeat. It's more purple and lacks the flashy butt.
A small flower. It's fine enough in design. What's not fine is the lack of physical/special split at a point when so many mons suddenly got abilities and therefore ones that seem to almost always inflict status effects whenever some type that somehow counts as physical hits them. Also this was still when the poison effect still affected the overworld travel. But that's just game mechanics.
Gulpin is very weird. It's a blob with a sleepy and kissy face and nubby butt hands that resemble its mouth, but it can open itself up very wide to just be a giant mouth. It's effectively entirely stomach in this manner. It's a blob that just eats everything, but in a round squishy form instead of some kind of toxic waste, so it gets huggability points in that.
Swalot is an even weirder blob. It's taller, with a similar face, but now staring with red eyes and having a yellow noodle mustache. It too can open up very wide and eat anything. It's such a goofy design in a way that I can't help but like it, and I felt compelled to have one on the team for a game.
An angry spiky piranha. That's it. That's this mon. It's a fish with jaggedness all over.
This shark is the front half of a shark. It really looks like its back half with the tail was chopped off. So this is just an angry shark head with fins.
I like whales and this one's a big bouncy ball of one. It has a giant wide smile and is just overall cute. Definitely worth attempting to hug even if it's too giant of an orb to reach around.
Big funny whale. It's effectively a blimp that swims instead of being a more traditional whale shape. It's got a giant smile as well. Everything about this is giant, except its relative scale in battles in most games. It also has four fins and keeps the two blowhole nostrils, still as weird of a whale as ever.
A small camel with green on its hump. There's also a hole because holes. Mainly for fire usage.
Now far more obviously a camel carrying volcanoes for humps. It looks annoyed to be doing so.
A fun smoke turtle. Probably nice to pet if avoiding the specifically glowing hot spots. It also has the constantly closed possibly happy eyes. I find it pretty cute.
A small bouncy pig with an orb on its head and a big pig nose to boop. However it must keep bouncing to live. That is its one curse that simply looks cute from outside.
A more normal pig mon. It doesn't have to bounce constantly but it really resembles a normal pig with extra balls stuck to it.
A strange attempt at a panda that has varied spots. It's eternally dizzy or drunk or something.
It's small and bitey. It's a ground bug that just chomps on things while having sparkly eyes, which is really all you need in a design for something that just bites. Like the Chain Chomp, or maybe more specifically Chain Chomplets since those kind of have bodies.
It's a bug. It's a neat bug, but still mostly just looks like a bug. A bit dragonfly-ish with fangs, though. It also has grabby finger-looking feet like a chameleon.
Flygon is a very cute dragon. It comes with big red goggles that are on top of more normal eyes, and it gives it a bit of a fun glasses-like look where the lenses are big but the eyes are small. It also has tiny nostrils now, also cute, and small grabby claws. It's also a bit bottom-heavy like dragons can be in this series. Having a Mega would have been cool, but whatever design could do it justice I guess is left to the fans.
It's a cactus ball with arms, and it has eyes in the holes in its face, which also form a smile. Without those eyes peeking out it'd be a lot creepier.
It's a cactus scarecrow with smaller, yellow eyes even deeper in its face holes. The creepy factor has been increased a bit with this one.
Small fluffy bird. I want to pet it. It apparently also acts as a hat sometimes.
A taller and even fluffier bird. It's a giant puffball with bird in it. It also looks like a weird chicken if it gets wet. Birds are fun.
An angry fluffy cat ferret. It's specifically named as a cat ferret and not a mongoose, which is a bit strange. It also just always looks angry even if it's happy.
It's a snake, and an odd one that bunches up like a thick hose instead of coiling around like a snake does. Its eyes are flipped from those of Zangoose, where they look constantly gleeful or mischievous regardless of mood.
If you want a rock that's in the shape of a crescent moon, this is it. It also has eyes.
If you want a rock that's in the shape of a sun with rays, this is it. It also has eyes, but they're constantly squinting. As if it's looking at itself.
I keep forgetting this one exists, but it's a weird fish with big lips. It also has a zig-zag on it but it's not Electric, rather it's one of those ones that's immune to it.
Much more obviously a catfish. It just looks goofy. Fish monsters can be funny in this series.
A lobster, possibly crawfish, which has a silly staring face that it just does. It's a bit fun in that regard.
A much more lobster-y lobster, a bit ugly but fitting for a lobster. Also just has a giant star stuck on its head for some reason.
It's a top, I guess. One that's also a clay figure. It just… exists. It's based on some ancient clay figures that have those closed oval eyes.
It's a strange clay figure that sort of resembles an owl with too many eyes to where it doesn't even need to rotate its head. It also kinda looks like it has big nipples with its chest markings. It's just so weird and I kinda like it for the sake of its specific strangeness.
Finally, we've arrived at the fossils.
It's a cute coral kind of monster with also somehow a long neck and stubby legs on a round lower body. Monsters with glowing beady eyes poking out of the darkness are a thing I usually like, even if it's more apparent that this is just a dark surface rather than a void. Also this face is surrounded by many pink tentacles that are a bit reminiscent of something else.
An extension of its previous form, but now the eyes are in more of a dark void than before, in the "mouth" of this creature, with fake eye spots on top. I also find this very cute, since it still keeps the stubby round lower body, and this is probably easier to pet on the head now that it's not just poking the face or risking brushing up against the tentacles. This more defined pettable body bumps it up a bit in my books.
What an adorable baby shrimp bug. It has eyes like a Paras, but on stalks, and it's got those pinchy arms, and it has flappy feather fins on either side. It's a very cute trilobite-like creature.
The shrimp now stands tall, and I still find it cute. It looks like it has a smile, its eyes are now more typical Pokémon beast while also having eye spots like how the other fossil does, but it also has those pinchy mantis arms still. If it opens up its mouth, you can spot three tiny fangs. I'd consider it at a good hugging height.
Another set of monsters here before we get to the super monsters.
A far-too-ugly fish that looks like it has too many holes in it to even survive. I understand it's exactly a Magikarp parallel, but I feel like even Magikarp has a bit more charm to it.
The ugly fish above becomes a serpent again, but this time instead of being like a dragon, it's some adequately beautiful I guess snake. It's an okay design, I do like how it's not all just pale yellow and its back half gets an interesting scale pattern, but I feel like there could have been more to it.
It's a weird Ditto with boobs. But only in its "normal" form. Because of the weather mechanics being expanded on in this generation, this monster is here to show it off by changing form as well, which also leads into the form change mechanics overall. The forms are basically a head ball surrounded by some element of weather. In bright sunny weather, it becomes the sun on a cloud. In rain, a raindrop, also on a cloud. In snow, it somehow becomes a cloud tornado. An interesting idea but an okay design.
I love this weird lizard. They have a kind of awkward design and possibly awkward behavior if animations are anything to go by, plus their color change works perfectly except for the zigzag stripe on its torso, and I just love chameleons in general.
It's a tissue ghost. It's like the ones that are made to hang up as decorations, but darker and with kind of a silly face.
Banette is a cute doll plush ghost and therefore in a great position to get away with terrible things. From its zipper smile to its flappy arms and stubby legs, plus its round body that's made for hugging like any plush would be, it's a great mix of creepy and cute.
It's a floating skull ghost with a singular glowing eye. A cool concept but cartoonified. Could have gone slightly creepier though.
What looks like a weird mummy cyclops skull… thing. With grabby hands. An interesting enough design that also looks like it's giving off smoke, but I still feel this line got a needed boost in the next generation.
This is a weird mon that is probably forgotten about quite a bit. For one thing, it looks like a basic long-necked dinosaur at first glance, but then it just has bananas growing on its chin, which is something strange for an animal to have, but this animal is a plant so therefore… it has bananas on its chin. Also it can fly, somehow. Yes, this giant beast is capable of flight because it has giant leaf wings on its back. I don't know how they came up with this concept but it's just absurd.
This is one of those Pokémon that I forget exists because it hardly ever comes up, even though it apparently showed up in the anime as one of James's for some time. It is cute, and has an unusual design where it just looks to be like some kind of bell with a talisman hanging from it, just covered in blood somehow. I feel like this is an underappreciated mon that deserves a look, but still not one I'm raving about.
Edgy dog. It looks very "not just a phase" and "I'm just misunderstood". At least it has interesting roots in mythology so it's not just purely "ow the edge". There's even a bit of a display of a symbol on its head reminiscent of what's often called the "yin-yang", another interesting touch. There's some subtleties to this design that unfortunately overall just displays an emo aura to a typical look.
It's baby Wobbuffet. Even its weird eye tail only has one eye in this form. Instead of looking like a punching bag, it has flappy ears and such. It mainly feels like redesigning Wobbuffet for this generation instead of the previous.
An icy triangle, or cone I guess considering the 3D form. It's pretty cute and looks all bundled up but is made of ice so it's just going to be cold.
This ugly face with no lips and skin with holes like a rotted mushroom is for sure creepy, but it's not even a kind of creepy I'm into. This is why I'd keep Snorunt from evolving before the next set of monsters came out, and even then the better alternative is locked to females for some reason. Also somehow this got a Mega and not Flygon. No idea what was going on there.
Back to outright adorable, here's a seal orb. Real seals can somewhat resemble orbs at times, this is just pure orb.
I also love this seal, even though it's less orb, it's still wonderfully plump as a seal can be, with the same joyful expressions as its previous form, but now with a funny whisker mustache.
This one's all right. It's definitely a walrus with a lot of hair on its face, but not radiating as much pure joy as its previous forms. Still kinda cute though. It has a funny pig nose.
It's a sleepy pearl in a clamshell, which is cute. It's more than just the pearl inside, the blue stuff the pearl is on is the rest of its body apparently. It's an okay design, but I'm reminded of a cooler design from Digimon, Syakomon. Not only is it slimier-looking, as is a tradition of monster design for that series, but it's an adorable green snot blob with a bunny face inside of a shell that has teeth. But that's not all, when the shell closes, it has two eye holes to peek out of, so this clam monster has two faces. That's even considering the possible disadvantage of having holes in a defensive shell, but it can at least see out of them.
A deep sea serpent, complete with a weird gaping face and light spots. It looks very goofy. This is a trade item evolution, somehow.
A weird pink seahorse with a clamshell bra, for some reason. Even the male version, but I don't judge. It just doesn't have a sexual dimorphism like some mons. Its blank stare is a bit off-putting.
I have previously forgotten about Relicanth's existence, but a certain sidequest keeps it at least notable. It looks like a rocky Brock fish. It's dirt camouflaged and is just a bit jagged. It's a relatively normal fish.
I feel like Luvdisc would have been forgotten about more if it wasn't for the necessity of Heart Scales for Move Reminders, and these mons often carry those. It's shaped exactly like a cartoon heart, but acts like a fish with big lips.
Now we're at the pseudo-Legendaries. However, this generation has two sets.
It's an okay dragon baby. It has a mullet. That's about all I can see that makes it stand out from other stubby dragons.
Cocoon mons don't have the best early history, and this one continues the idea of a cocoon dragon from the previous generation, but what I do like about this is how it's just an orb with stubby legs and some eyes poking out. It's just silly enough for me to like it enough.
A big blue dragon that's usually screaming. It has big flappy rubber-looking red wings and some panels on its underside. From the front it's kinda football-shaped. It's an okay design, it mainly fulfills the role of being a dragon.
It looks a bit like a security camera. The claws would mount into the wall and it would just stare at everything.
This has two Beldum arms and a central face with a pointy nose. It's going back to the concept of merging monsters to make a larger one.
This one isn't as disgusting as its name implies. It has four Beldum arms now and a giant X on its face. It could be two Metang stuck together, but with only one set of eyes.
Finally, the real Legendaries. And Mythicals.
It's a stone golem robot, similar to a later one, but this one's just stone and not any kind of ghost.
It's polygonal with its prevalent ice crystal design, and its shine makes it look almost metallic, like a total robot. Out of this trio, I think I like this one the most.
This one is a rounded robot. It has weird fingers and looks like an alien robot in general.
A cute jet dragon. All red and happy with arms but no legs, just some fins on the butt. As mentioned before, it was at one point fused with Blaziken.
An also cute, but older-looking jet dragon. This one comes in blue.
A big blue whale with red magic lines all over it. I like its bizarre orca design, but it's still not in my top picks.
A giant chunky land lizard monster. Its tail looks like an electric shaver.
A long dragon noodle that's green with grabby claws. Its face looks funny, with bright red lips.
It's a small star baby and I love it. It has clown makeup kind of, some flappiness to its arms and wings, and of course a big creepy eye in its stomach that probably shoots lasers. It's just so adorable and also has weird scary power, so that's also fun. I also like the ability to just make as many of these as I can with a special preview disc that was given out at some point.
This one is an alien. It has a neat enough design, plus three other forms where it has whippier arms, a tankier body, or just becomes a jet design. However I think the concept of purely alien mons could still stand to be fleshed out more, especially considering the Ultra Beasts that showed up later in Generation 7 which had some good ideas.
Finally, again, statistics, because everyone loves those. Supposedly. Actually probably not. But some secretly do anyway. I'm kind of a spreadsheet nerd when it comes to organizing things.
Going by the chart, it looks like another mostly average one, but still tilting over a bit towards more things I like than dislike. I feel like that makes sense.
Next up is Johto. I know that I like a lot of the mons from Johto, so we'll see how those work out in the ratings and if I go off on tangents about how much I love some certain weird creatures.