With Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl releasing last week, we’re now all aboard the Pokémon Legends: Arceus hype train, and we don’t expect it to stop chugging along until the game drops early next year. From the Pokémon Presents last August, where we learned of new evolutions for the oft forgotten Basculin and Stantler, to the trailer drop which revealed Kleavor, the continued promise of new evolutions for old Pokémon means we couldn’t get off the hype train even if we wanted to. It's a choo-choo.
As of these three reveals, there are 901 Pokémon in existence, not including regional variants and different forms. Of these hundreds, it's hard to deny that some Pokémon are outright underwhelming — whether because they’re underpowered, do not evolve, or are of questionable design (looking at you, Bruxish).
Sycther, and its new evolution Kleavor (above), is none of those, though, and prompted us to scavenge together the following ten Pokémon we believe deserve an evolution to discover in Pokémon Legend: Arceus’s Hisui region. Let us know your thoughts via the poll at the bottom of the page.
Pinsir must be jealous of its version-exclusive sister Pokémon, Scyther. Not only does Scyther now have two evolutions, Scizor matched the Flying-type Mega Evolution Pinsir received in Generation VI with its own. And since developer Game Freak shelved the Mega Evolution mechanic, Pinsir doesn’t even have that!
We’re not certain if a Pokémon with a gaping, vertical maw filled with vicious teeth can look sad, but we’re certain it isn’t happy being relegated to Sycther’s shadow. If any Generation I Bug-type needs some love in Hisui, it’s Pinsir.
One of the strangest Pokémon introduced in Generation II, Girafarig’s design begs for an evolution. Its Pokédex entries state its tail houses a small brain of its own and often bites or uses mysterious powers to drive away enemies. An evolution could take this idea to the next level, giving the unsettling tail more sentience and power, thus turning Girafarig into a Psychic-type powerhouse akin to a child-friendly Eldritch horror.
Dunsparce seems incomplete. While not a Bug-type, Dunsparce resembles an insect, almost as if it were the larva of some greater, more imposing Pokémon. Its pitiful base stats for a non-evolvable Pokémon, along with the tiny wings on its back, imply an evolution was planned for it. It’s almost as if Game Freak forgot to program Dunsparce’s evolution into the game way back in 1999 – and then in every game afterward for the next 20 years.
One day, we hope Game Freak remembers Dunsparce exists.
Like many Pokémon on this list, Qwilfish suffers from mediocre stats. While its design is rather plain, it does have a little flavour in how it puffs up to intimidate other Pokémon and deflates like a balloon soon after. Still, it’s basically just a puffer fish.
With Magikarp and Feebas, there is no shortage of pathetic fish Pokémon, yet both these Pokémon grow up into fan favourites. Pokémon Legends: Arceus seems like a great time for Qwilfish to join their ranks with a truly intimidating evolution, turning it into a Pokémon worthy of our teams.
Mawile’s poor stats hamper its great design. As a small bipedal creature with a massive pair of jaws growing out the back of its head, its middling attack and weak defenses are enough to cut it from most teams. Sure, much like Pinsir, Mawile received a Mega Evolution that dealt with this problem, but Mega Mawile is so awesome that we wish Game Freak would make it a permanent evolution instead, or create a new, Hisuian-themed one that plays further into how Mawile wears Japanese-inspired clothing.
Or, y’know, bring Mega Evolution back.
Why does Luvdisc not evolve into Alomomola? They’re the same colour. They’re both shaped like a heart. Did someone forget to program it in? This grievous oversight needs correction in Pokémon Legends: Arceus. If not Alomomola, Luvdisc deserves something.
But seriously, why does Luvdisc not evolve into Alomomola, Game Freak? ANSWER US.
Every Generation introduces an Electric-type rodent Pokémon that mimics Pikachu. Yet unlike Pikachu, none of these mousey Pokémon have an evolution. The argument for one could be made for any of them, but we’d argue Pachirisu deserves a Hisuian evolution the most.
The Hisui region is an ancient version of Generation IV’s Sinnoh, which was the generation Pachirisu debuted in. And if that wasn’t enough, Se Jun Park shocked the Pokémon world by winning the 2014 World Championship with the diminutive squirrel as a crucial part of his team. Parchirisu has earned a spotlight.
We’d also appreciate another squirrel-themed Pokémon that is less punchable than Greedent.
Chatot is quite unique in both design and mechanics. Not only is Chatot one of the few Pokémon canonically able to mimic human speech, its signature move, Chatter, is one of a kind. In Generations IV and V, Chatot could use Chatter outside of battle to record a new battle cry through the Nintendo DS’s microphone. In battle, Chatter’s chance to confuse was based on the volume of such a recording.
In later generations, it’s not possible to record a new cry, so Chatot lost the unique mechanic behind its signature move, and as it's quite small and not part of an evolutionary line, a Hisuian evolution could revitalize one of the most distinctive Pokémon introduced in Generation IV.
Do you remember Komala? If you said yes, we’d say you’re a liar. Komala’s design is so uninspired it looks like a caricature drawn for a child's alphabet book (K is for Koala!) rather than a Pokémon.
Still, there’s some potential there. Ursine Pokémon, such as Teddyursa, Cubchoo, and Pancham, begin as cuddly, plain creatures before evolving into towering beasts, giving precedent for Komala to evolve into a more fearsome marsupial. Komala’s Pokédex entries also say it’s born asleep and dies asleep, which reminds us of a frightening Ghost-type Pokémon entry.
We wouldn’t say no to a ghost koala. Either way, the only koala-themed ‘mon deserves better.
Yes – Eevee already has eight evolutions. But as far as we’re concerned, Eevee doesn’t have enough until all eighteen types are represented.
The last time we got an ‘Eeveelution’ was in 2013’s Pokémon X and Y with Sylveon. Since then, two generations have come and (nearly) gone without another addition to one of the most popular Pokémon’s evolution repertoire.
Hisui, being steeped in Japanese-inspired myth, surely necessitates a Dragon or a Fighting-type ‘Eeveelution,’ the latter perhaps designed around an ancient martial art. The reveal of such a Pokémon would set the fandom ablaze.
And there you have it – 10 Pokémon we think deserve a Hisuian evolution. Let us know in the poll which Pokémon you think is the most deserving and why, or berate us in the comments for missing one of the dozens of obvious choices that you’d like to see when Pokémon Legends: Arceus launches on 28th January. Long gone are the days where there were only 151 Pokémon, so we’re certain we missed a handful.