Did you know that with the advent of Pokémon Black and White there are now 649 Pokémon in existence? I remember back in the day when I would watch the anime on television and hear that familiar Pokérap song at the end of each episode naming all the Pokémon that, at the time, totaled 150. I'll admit, I was one of those people who tried to memorize their names, and I also went even further by researching their origins and how they were thought up. And guess what? I still do.
This is the 11th of my many I Choose You! articles where I will focus on one Pokémon or on its evolutionary line and cover its origins and abilities. I'll also include my own opinions about the Pokémon and what I remember most about them. Sure, we all know about Pikachu, Mewtwo, and Lucario. But what about the less famous ones like Finneon, Lombre, and Graveler? I've added all 649 Pokémon into a randomizer and I will try to focus on all of them as they come and in no particular order. Even if you are not a Pokémon fan, I hope you'll learn a bit about them, how they affected my own gaming experience, and perhaps realize why the Pokémon franchise is still going strong. Hit the jump for Rotom!
Rotom is one of those Pokémon that has undergone changes every time a new game has come out. First originating in Pokémon Diamond and Pearl, Rotom is a rare dual type Electric/Ghost Pokémon that you can only get once. Then in Pokémon Platinum, it gains additional forms that eventually allow it to change its secondary type in Pokémon Black and White. Its multiple forms, unique typing, and inspiration make Rotom a fascinating Pokémon worth knowing. Its stats and movepool also make it a formidable battler if you plan to use it competitively.
When Rotom first appeared in Pokémon Diamond and Pearl, you only had one chance to catch one and it was found inside a television inside the Old Chateau in Eterna Forest. Like most Ghost-type Pokémon, Rotom is described as a prankster that enjoys shocking people by leaping out of electronics and appliances it possesses and surprising its unsuspecting victims. Because it is also part Electric-type, Rotom can also literally shock people and is capable of ruining the appliance its possessing by causing its inner workings to malfunction. It is later revealed in Pokémon Platinum that Rotom was discovered and named by Team Galactic's Commander Charon. Its name comes from the word motor spelled backwards since Rotom converts the mechanical energy it gets from an appliance into electrical energy for itself - the opposite of what a motor's purpose is.
After Pokémon Platinum came out, Nintendo gave away the Secret Key item via Mystery Gift that allowed you to enter a secret room in the Galactica Eterna Building that contains a microwave, washing machine, refrigerator, rotor fan, and lawnmower. When Rotom enters one of these appliances, its overall stats increase and it gains a new elemental attack relating to which one it possesses. This lets Rotom learn the attacks Overheat, Hydro Pump, Blizzard, Air Slash, and Leaf Storm. It still keeps its dual Electric/Ghost-type, but it isn't until Black and White that Rotom's secondary type changes to match the new attacks it learns. In Pokémon Black and White, Heat Rotom becomes Electric/Fire, Wash Rotom becomes Electric/Water, Frost Rotom becomes Electric/Ice, Fan Rotom becomes Electric/Flying, and Mow Rotom becomes Electric/Grass.
Because Rotom possesses appliances and causes them to levitate and move around, it may be based on the idea of poltergeist manifestations that involve ghosts and other spirits creating havoc by moving things around and scaring people for attention. Japanese folklore also mentions prankster spirits called tsukumogami that originate from objects after they have reached their 100th birthday. These objects gain a soul and like to cause mischief by scaring people who are unaware they are alive - just like Rotom! Its Electric-type also might allude to ball lightning, an electrical phenomenon describing glowing, spherical objects that float through our atmosphere. There still is no explanation as to why it happens, so its origins are a mystery.
Pokémon designer Ken Sugimori created Rotom and its appearance is that of a small ball of electricity with a sharp pointed head surrounded by an aura of electricity. Sugimori also designed Pulseman, a 1994 Mega Drive game published by Sega. In his game, Pulseman is gifted with the powers to enter computer terminals and devices and can use electricity to attack his enemies. Doesn't that sound a lot like Rotom?
I am a sucker for Electric-type Pokémon and they are one of my favorite types. So it's no surprise I've spent a lot of time playing with Rotom's many forms and plethora of attacks. Not only does Rotom have access to the reliable Shadow Ball and Thunderbolt, but its different forms let it serve different purposes. While it has low HP, its other stats are good enough to hold their own against the stronger Over Used Pokémon in competitive battles. For example, since Rotom has the Levitate ability, you could potentially create a Swampert counter by using Mow Rotom and equipping it with Leaf Storm and Will-O-Wisp, crippling its Attack. Wash Rotom can use Hydro Pump to put a huge dent on bulky Pokémon like Gliscor and Hippowdown. You have so many options to choose from, but you must always be wary of Crunch and the different weaknesses and resistances each unique form gains in Black and White.
I really enjoy it when a new Pokémon game introduces a unique type combination, and Rotom's dual Electric/Ghost-type made me smile. Its forms introduced in Platinum made it even stronger and Black and White's changes just added to my happiness. You never know. Next time you touch an electronic device or appliance and get shocked, it may just be Rotom saying hello.