Top 5 Worst Pokemon Gym Leader Hairstyles:

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Greetings my beautifully coiffed PokeBabes! Today for our “Silly Saturday” post (to counter-act our heavy weight “Big Wednesday Blog Post”) we are going to lather, rinse, repeat our way through some long and luxurious nostalgia!

The world of anime has always presented some magnificent opportunities for us mere mortals to bask in the reflected glow of some laws of physics and gravity defying “Anime Hair” and Pokemon, my dear salon savvy chums, does not leave our eyes un-bedazzled in the weird anime hair stakes.

Look at Jesse Rocket’s magnificent envy-inducing red locks. Professor Oak’s earnest but handsome short, back and sides. Gary Oak’s bad boy points. Nurse Joy’s strange but kawaii pink creations. Pokemon characters have some truly inspiring hair.

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But then.

They also have some hair that pushes the envelope a little too far and starts leaning towards U.G.L.Y territory.

Today, my pomaded pompodours, we are going to pay a loving tribute to some of (there are plenty I couldn’t include in just a Top 5) the worst hair in the Pokemon universe:

(5) Clair:

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I freely admit Clair is an absolute Boss and my first real girlpower crush as a kid, but oh mah god. There’s just so much going on. In so many directions. It’s Power Dressing gone into over-drive. I get how she’s rivals with Lance and has to prove herself as a competent and strong confident dragon leader in front of all the male elders and I love Clair, just… a little less styling gel, perhaps? You’re not actually a Dragonair… Clair…

(4) Grant:

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To be fair I really like Grant and I enjoy his rock climbing gym immeasurably but just… I know his hair is meant to emulate a mountain but… hair shouldn’t emulate mountains!!! Grant looks like someone who fell asleep on a couch at a fellow rock climber’s house party and they put a load of stuff in his hair while he was asleep to mess with him and then Grant woke up and no one told him how bad his hair had been pranked so he just went off Gym Leadering for the day without checking a mirror…

(3) Kiawe:

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Very similar to Grant is the reason Kiawe’s hair grates on me. I get that Kiawe’s hair is meant to be symbolic of the towering inferno from which he and his backpacker stoner friend do crazy dance  trials from up on the mountains yada yada yada but Kiawe just looks like he’s going through a teen-angst-rebellion phase and stole his sister’s henna and died his hair ‘all different cos he’s such a non-conformist, mom…! Also, you can’t see it here because this picture is pants, but Google search Kiawe’s eyebrows – they deserve a blog post on their own…

(2) Iris/Drayden:

hair 2 That’s not a hair style that’s a beanbag glued to someone’s head.

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I’m as a partial to a nice beardy bloke as the next person (and a silver fox to boot) but seriousyl Drayden. Check yourself. And his actual hair is so nice and manly and normal looking… But that beard man. Sort it out.

(1) Samson Oak:

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Business at the front, party at the back… Nothing says Ladies Man Party Animal like a Mullet. Clearly a direct counter-part to Professor Samuel Oak’s straight laced traditional stuffed shirt educated man spiel, Samson is Samuel’s wild Hawaiian, sorry Alolan, party spirit set free!

Now, I’m not saying I don’t love a good Mullet, but I think it’s fair to say that in the fashion stakes a Mullet is Number One on everyone’s Shit List…! This is why, despite not being a Gym Leader, Professor Mullet just HAD to top our list…!

There we have it nerdlings! Keep watching the skeys, I mean skies!

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Nostalgia Nerd: Pokemon Trading Card Game for Nintendo Gameboy (1998) [Straight Outta Kanto]

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Greetings PokeNerds and welcome to Straight Outta Kanto – your brand new number one Irish Nerd Blog for all the latest news, reviews, rumours, nostalgia, nonsense and occasionally… more!

Today we are going to discuss a game that, I freely admit, I still have not completed – yet: Pokemon Trading Card Game for Nintendo Gameboy Colour.

As I was browsing through the Nintendo eShop a few weeks back I discovered that for five human dollars (are dollarydoos) you could download a wee digital version the Pokemon TCG for Gameboy Colour game. This thrilled me immeasurably as this was one game for the original Gameboy Colour this GenWunner never got to play for first time around.

The Pokemon Trading Card Game in general I am relatively new to. Like I said, this Nintendo game by-passed me as a child, and the actual cards – believe it or not – weren’t as big in my school as they were in others so apart from receiving the odd token packet of cards at Christmas from the odd (and odd) uncle, the anime and manga held much more appeal to me than a side-game I knew little of.

As I’ve mentioned before in this blog, in 2015 I discovered PokeCon Dublin. There I met all my current friends and finally Came Out of the Nerd Closest. Finally I had my eyes opened to the fact that I no longer had to keep my childhood Pokemon obsession secret, because there were many, many other people who shared the same passion for Pokemon as I did – and a lot of them were a heck of a lot older than I was – no more shame, hooray!

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During that glorious first wave of fandom (as it were) in 2015 I discovered the physical Pokemon Trading Card game. I was walking past my local Toymaster and saw their Pokemon Card themed window display  and well, the rest (and my credit card) is history…

That summer I first collected the cards, dug out my old “token” cards from the 90’s, bought more and more and more cards, eventually had my good friend and S.O.K interviewee Mike Culligan actually teach me how to play the card game in real life.

I… enjoy the collecting I think more than the battling and appreciating the artwork rather than that technical mechanics of the game, but give me the wrong ten year old with a crappy deck and I can still show them who the boss is…!

The old games of the Pokemon series that I don’t have or missed out on first time around always hold a sort of rose tinted romanticism about them, like this very game. Once I learned to play the card game I was determined to find a physical copy of the Nintendo version, to no prevail! The one copy I did buy second hand that summer was utterly banjaxed and completely put me off buying another copy…

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However! Thanks to the glorious power of the internetables I now own a digital copy of the game  and was able at last to relive a little of my lost(ish) childhood!

So, call a spade a spade. This game was clearly some class of a cash-in based on the insane popularity of the actual cards – one of many cash-in side-games that have peppered the Pokemon franchise through-out its history. (But we won’t get in to that today…!)

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In the game you play a cool young guy who lives in a place the resembles one of those old Super Mario world maps. The token Pokemon professor is Professor Mason and he has given you the task of “travelling” (also known as clicking your character around this tiny map) to various Pokemon Card Clubs (a bit like Pokemon Gyms) duelling the trainers there with your Pokemon cards (just like in a regular Pokemon Card battle) until you unlock the club Master (Gym Leader!)

You do this eight times until you defeat all eight Pokemon Club Masters and are then entitled to face the four Grand Masters (Elite Four) and hopefully obtain the coveted Legendary Cards.

All the eight Pokemon Club Masters are Type based ie: Fire, Grass, Water, Electric etc and you literally just endlessly duel at random until you manage to defeat them.

There is also the Pokedex based element of “Gotta Collect ’em All!” as you acrue more cards through out the game.

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Each time you succeed in your duel with a Pokemon trainer you receive a booster pack (just like in real life) and are then able to expand and edit your own card deck based on the available boosters and hopefully build stronger and stronger decks. This takes a long while to do and the actual game play itself for the parts of the game that I have completed are entirely luck based. You can go against a club Master and get a hand with one Caterpie and the opposition can come at you with five super-strong high level Tauros and Charizard cards.

This random “out of your control” element of the game makes for, in my opinion, a slow, frustrating and monotonous advance through the game. From a nostalgia point of view it’s great to see all the old cards again, see the artwork (the trainer with all the promo Piakchu cards is a particular delight) and get insight into what booster packs of yore was like, but I just don’t know if I have the patience to complete this game!

Eight year old me would have had little else to do with my time but complete this game, however adult me twenty years on has been spoiled rotten by more attention grabbing softer games with easier wins.

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That being said, it is a fun game, the animation is RetroGlorious and the soundtrack is dripping with charming and nostalgic ooze and I will one day complete it and it’s a nifty addition to any collector’s collection.

According to Wikipedia there was a Pokemon Trading Card Game 2: Here Comes the Great Team Rocket! available solely as a Japanese release and the original game was apparently banned in Saudi Arabia because of the use of stars on the Pokemon Cards and the star’s connection to Israel… Makes… Sense!?

For curiosity’s sake I’d love to get a nose at that Team Rocket sequel to the game, but I better finish the first one first…!

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There we have it nerdlings! Keep watching the skeys, I mean skies!

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Pokemon Top 5 Pain in the Arse Gym Leaders! [Straight Outta Kanto]

Konnichiwa PokeNerds! They say time heals all wounds… well today at Straight Outta Kanto HQ we intend to find out if this is in fact true by doing a brief Top 5 of the most annoying Pokemon Gyms we’ve faced to date!

So buckle up nerds, we’re going remembering!

(5) Brock:

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December 25th 1999.

Straight Outta Kanto receive their first Nintendo Gameboy and Pokemon Red Cartridge.

December 26th 1999.

Straight Outta Kanto embark on the epic and seemingly endless challenge of trying to defeat a Level Twelve Onix with a low level Charmander and a purple rat.

July 7th 2018.

Straight Outta Kanto still in therapy for Brock related PTSD.

 

(4) Wallace:

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What is it with pretty much all the ice and snow gyms in the Pokemon universe requiring an obscene amount of patience and pain-in-the-arsery!?

Wallace’s gym really takes the biscuit. (Not my biscuit however ’cause Joey doesn’t share food…!)

The whole only being able to walk on one ice tile at a time in one direction ONCE or else you crash through the bottom and have to start again still rankles me to this day.

And I love Wallace! I totally ship the flamboyant Wallace and the snazzy Steven Stone… Just your gym Wallace, your gym I don’t love!

(3) Sabrina:

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I LOATHE TELEPORTATION TILES!!!

I get travel sick, okay!?

Even just looking at the amount of spinning my character does on one of these confusing feckers gets me dizzy – never mind how lost and confused and you get trying to navigate how to get around!

I’m sure there’s plenty of people out there who thoroughly enjoy a good teleportation tile, but whenever I see them pop up in any of the later games I die a little inside.

(2) Volkner:

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Trust an Emo to have an annoying as hell gym.

I absolutely despise this gym.

While Volkner himself didn’t pose too much of a threat, the mechanical cogs needing to be turned in the right place at the right time was just too hard. Too hard! I still don’t know how I managed to get through this gym. All I know is this gym is genuine deterrent from any more future replays of this game…!

(1) Lt. Surge:

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Snitches get switches…

It could be the GenWunner in me but I have a lot of affection for this gym!

I think Lt.. Surge’s gym was a lot of people’s first experience with a gym where you couldn’t just walk up to the leader and straight up challenge (and that’s why it is listed as my number one most annoying gym.)

Finding an alternating set of switches hidden in the trash cans – that also happened to switch around whenever you left the gym or re-set themselves after a wrong guess- was a royal pain in the butt but nostalgia has coloured my anger and frustration with more of an “Awh, I remember how hard that gym was, how cute!”

Needless to say, the only Switch I want to see in Pokemon is the new game for Nintendo Switch… har har. Sorry! Couldn’t resist.

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Pokemon: The Spooky Side. A Top Thirteen of… Terror! [Straight Outta Kanto]

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Greetings PokeFans and welcome to Day 5 of Straight Outta Kanto‘s Seven Day Blog Challenge! As a major horror fan and obsessee of all thangs spookeh it would be a little re-miss of me to blog consistently about Pokemon and not discuss the dark and disturbing side of our favourite super-massive franchise!

From spooky fan art, to creepypasta, urban legends and insane fan theories on Youtube, our cute and cuddly friends and dear childhood memories have been thoroughly shredded and well, quite frankly, I love it!

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I love a good scare and whenever Pokemon makes its odd little nod towards da shpookeh shtuff in the games, well, it just gladdens my evil little heart!

So, without further ado, I present to you, Straight Outta Kanto‘s personal Top Thirteen of Pokemon: The Spooky Side.

(13) … RED … :

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I know Red is usually discussed in more hushed, reverent tones from a #TrainerGoals point of view. Red is the ultimate trainer. To a Pokemon trainer those three dots “…” are the greatest words (if you can call them that) in the history of the world.

BUT.

I always found it a little creepy the way after completing his Pokemon journey Red just vanished without a trace to the then single most remote location in the games -Mt. Silver.

Why?

What had happened to him that he felt he needed to remove himself from normal daily life?

Sure, some might argue that he went off to further his training, but plenty of other in-game trainers did that, they meditate under Tohjo Falls or go off a-wandering around various regions and that’s fine, it’s not a weird mysterious thing.

I always thought there was something sinister about silent Red on top of Mt. Silver.

Did he feel remorse and guilt for what his Championship has cost him?

He did kill Gary’s Raticate after all, right?

How many other Pokemon and their trainers did Red destroy in order to attain his victory?

Did he escape to Mt. Silver to flee the demons of his past?

Or their ghosts…?

Just something to think about.

(12) Trickmaster of Hoenn:

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So, in Pokemon Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald, and their respective re-boots, there is a relatively unassuming house along the route that runs between the gloriously nautical Slateport City and the shopping district of Mauville.

The house is a wacky building filled with traps and tricks run by “The Trick Master” and your goal is to make it through the various hindrances in your path and escape from the house and win a prize.

In essence it’s mainly an opportunity to test our your various new HMs, such as cutting down small trees or smashing through rocks and each time you beat a new gym leader and unlock the next HM the house changes up to suit your advanced skills.

HOWEVER.

There are trainers in the house, who battle you of course, who can’t get out and openly bemoan the fact that they are indeed trapped inside the house with no way to escape.

I find the idea of an eccentric old man holding a bunch of young trainers hostage in his out-of-the-way house a rather dodgy notion and do wonder if Trick Master knows or cares that he has a strange teens trapped in his house…?

Maybe they’re not real trainers at all, maybe they’re the ghosts of trainers who died inside the Trick Master’s walls doomed to ever wander until they find a way out?

We’ll never know…

(11) Darkrai of Mystery Dungeon… and others: 

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Depending on what you read/watch/play, Darkrai can either be a tragic misunderstood figure, or, a destructive God of Nightmares hell sent and bent on wreaking total and utter nightmare-induced chaos.

In Pokemon Rangers: Shadows of Almia Darkrai is responsible for possessing the lead boss villain and trying to destroy the world (or at least the Almia Region) by plunging it into an ever-living nightmare.

In Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Explorers of Time/Darkness in a shock post-game plot twist it transpires that Darkrai was responsible for all the evil events that took place in the main game between Dialga and Palkia and he masquerades as a friendly Cresselia until it’s time to drag you and your partner ‘mon into a wee Marill’s nightmare and kick-start an epic showdown between good and evil.

Same goes for Pokemon Park for the Wii!

So, to sum it up:

Movie Version Darkrai: Love-able Emo.

Video Game Darkrai: Malevolent Bastard.

Just stay away from Darkrai, kids. He wants your soul. Or something like that.

And he won’t send no flowers after either…!

(10) The Haunted House of Lentimas:

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In Pokemon Black and White 2 there’s a fun little option of being able to fly in an aeroplane to a whole new set of little villages off Undella Town exclusive to the B/W 2 games. Part of this trio of new towns is Lentimas Town and the small route connecting the Reversal Mountain. Along this route is … The Strange House

Technically this could be included under our last number as it does include a Darkrai storyline, but the house itself is so freaky it’s worth a mention all on it’s own.

The music and lighting is atmospheric and eerie. Plates rattle. Bookshelves quake. Spectral figure flick in and out of view. The furniture moves around differently each time you enter/leave the house so that new parts are/are not accessible to your character meaning you’ve got to invest time and effort into unlocking this mystery.

This is a spooky little jaunt that has a satisfying conclusion, so well worth digging out the old Nintendo DS for a revisit to the Strange House of Lentimas Town.

(9) Pokemon X and Y – Route 14:

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In Wednesday’s article (—> found here, by the way!) Nostalgia Top Ten: Pokemon X and Y (2013) Nintendo 3DS/2DS [Straight Outta Kanto] ) I touched on the sheer decaying beauty of the Kalos region. Route 14 is one of the prime examples of this decaying beauty and is one of my favourite places in Kalos to… haunt.

Imagine Viridian Forest, but gloomier. Much gloomier. There’s a creaking and abandoned children’s playground (where the swings seem to play themselves…!) There are decrepit graves littered all up and down this murky route and ghost trainers wait around every dark turn to battle you. Sounds creepy enough. How can we make this creepier!? Let’s add a weird little house where a strange, be-suited gentleman tells you a full on jump-scare horror story…!

The whole vibe is unsettling. Why is there an abandoned playground? What happened to the children to play on it? Why are there so many graves along this route? Why are it’s inhabitants so suspect?

Maybe Route 14 was originally a proper forest and a graveyard and the townsfolk had to de-consecrate the ground there and vandalise graves in order to construct a proper “route” system through from Lumiose to Laverre and the souls disturbed there now wreak a terrible vengeance on anyone who lingers too long near their graves…

Part of me would like to think… maybe there was an horrific accident at the near-by PokeBall Factory in Laverre City that killed off a whole town and while Laverre re-built itself, Route 14, was perhaps un-salvage-able and left to rot to remind the townsfolk “never again…

Stranger things have happened!

(8) The Celadon City story:

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Here’s a li’l nostalgia for all you glorious GenWunners out there!

Remember going to the top floor of the Gamefreak building in Celadon City back in the day and hearing the spooky anecdote about the gobshite who road UP the DOWN hill of Cycling Road at night fall and thought he was being dragged backwards by some malevolent sentient being!?

‘Cause I sure as hell remember!

I loved the stupid plot twist of this random story from that NPC.

Cracks me up every time.

However!

Cycling Road from Celadon to Fuschia is by the waterfront… what if he wasn’t just cycling backwards because he’s a dope but something be-tentacled really was pulling him backwards to his doom…

That’s a doozy of a brain-melt all right!

(6) Eterna Forest: 

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This is probably the single best haunted forest out of all the Pokemon games!

The physical forest itself is perfectly cromulent, if not annoying by virtue of the fact you have the clingy Cheryl lost and teaming up with you so you can run into endless insufferable double-trainer battles. (Grr… My Pokemon were always way stronger than Cheryl’s and I had to carry the whole team for the entire journey, this wedding is horseshit, I didn’t want salmon…!)

Things start to get a li’l freak-ay once you get the old abandoned old haunted old chateau!

There are many fan theories about this place.

Some say it was originally Gardenia’s family home and she poisoned her whole family to become gym leader and that’s why there’s an antidote in the trash there that you can find. There’s also the Old Gateau that heals all status problems that comes from there.

This Old Chateau is clearly steeped in a toxic past…

The ghosts are a cute and creepy old family in a crumbling home where the walls have red glowing eyes (Gengar, betches!) and the dining table is still set for a last meal…

My favourite and the scariest Old Chateau interpretation is the one from that animated series Pokemon Generations they released for Pokemon 20 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IBp1quVhbjo —> available to watch here!

After watching this you will never go down to the woods today again, you’re sure of a big surprise…

(5) No, You’re Not The One… :

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Creepy ghost girl randomly appearing in odd places making lights get all flickery and shit and floating around saying spooky shit indicating she’s a lost soul looking for somebody!?

Ah hell no!

She’s turned up in Unova, Hoenn and Kalos that we know of… we’re certain she’s in other places too and she is the one genuine people ghost of the Pokemon series.

This is a long running mystery and I for one welcome our new creepy ghost girl leader!

(4) Hypno’s Lullaby:

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Watch this (enough said!) —>

(3) Lavender Town:

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My favourite place in the ENTIRE Pokemon universe!

I adored this place as a child and even more so as an adult thanks to all the bad creepypasta fan fiction, urban legends and theories floating out there!

The music alone is unsettling enough but the un-friendly town’s people and their genuine fear of the Pokemon Tower grave site is enough to give anyone the wullies!

While it does transpire that the really vicious ghost haunting Lavender Town is just poor old Mammy Marowak, the constant presence of  traditional Japanese style exorcists in the throes of possession thanks to the abundance of Gastly and Haunters lead me to believe that this place will always be haunted.

If you think the music is bad enough as it is already, here’s a clip of it playing… backwards:

Yeah, there’s a reason people thought that this music contained evil secrets note that induced gruesome suicides in the children that heard it…

(2) Alola!:

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I love it! I love it! I love it!

If you talk to one of the school kids on the beach just on the outskirts of Melemele island he will inform you that everyone’s too afraid to approach the school at night because of supernatural doin’s a transpirin’! (Personally speaking I found school to scary to approach during the day never mind the night, but whatever!)

Once you get to the school a strange foreign child approaches you and gives you a list of seven spooky mysteries you need to solve.

This is a surprisingly cinematic episode that contain genuine tropes from full on J-Horror moives, such as: stairs that lead on and on to nowhere no matter how far you climb, eerie mysterious lights, cold in-door breezes, terrifying noises speaking through the PA system, weird footsteps getting louder and louder, hallucination induced class rooms full of ghostly children…

Oh my god, I just loved it! There’s a little plot twist at the end also, but I’ll leave that one for you to find…! 😉

We also cannot mention Haunted Alola without mentioning:

Mimikyu’s Trial:

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I’m a sucker for an auld paranormal investigation and making an entire Pokemon trial based on such was one of my highlights of the entire series so far!

(1) The Fans:

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For me, personally, the scariest thing about Pokemon is all the thousands of fans who want to turn their favourite childhood memories into pure nightmare fuel!

There has to be some sick and twisted psychology going on there!

As a Creepypasta writer and horror themed Pokemon fan-artist I can’t really point the finger, I’m part of the problem, man, not the solution!

Gamefreak and Nintendo give us tiny tidbits of death and gore and we latch on to that like a Shellder on a Slowpoke tail and don’t let go until we’ve turned an innocuous incident into the darkest back story imaginable.

The internet is full of the most hideous and hilarious creepypasta and spooky fan theories that for copyright reasons I probably can’t delve too deeply into here, but go ahead and search. Don’t come crying to me because your childhood was ruined, we are the fans, and we are the ones ruining the childhoods…!

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There we have it you messed up nightmare fuelling nerdlings!

Keep watching the skeys, I mean skies!

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For more information on Straight Outta Kanto, feel free to follow our Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/StraightOuttaKanto91/ or join our group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1623889321229114/ 

For more information on the Pokemon related spook art of your autheuse Venus de Vilo, ta da! —> https://www.deviantart.com/venusdevilo.

Thanks for reading! 🙂

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