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I Choose You! #18 - Oshawott

ichooseyou.pngPokémon Black and White have been released in Japan and in Europe and they will be released in the US tomorrow! That means there are now 649 Pokémon in existence. To anyone not following the series, that may seem like a lot considering it all started with 150 over a decade ago. 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. Well, I still do! This is the 18th of my many I Choose You! articles where I will span over five generations of games writing about each Pokémon and what makes it special. That's right - all 649 of them.

After four generation of Pokémon games, we are all used to the same elements that appear in every game. For example, everyone knows that you need to fight all eight Gym Leaders before you can challenge the Elite Four, and there is always a group of bad guys trying to rule the world. Another known fact is that at the start of your game, a friendly professor will always offer you a Grass, Fire, or Water-type Pokémon to use on your journey. Each Pokémon has unique characteristics and stats, so your gaming experience might differ depending on which one you choose. Pokémon Black and White is no exception. Hit the jump for Unova's Water-type starter, Oshawott!

oshawott.pngLike the other starters and a handful of Generation V Pokémon, Oshawott was revealed back in May on the Japanese variety show Pokémon Sunday. The show initially just displayed its silhouette, leaving many to question what it was exactly. All we could see was something that looked like it had a flat tail so it left a lot to the imagination. Some people even thought it would be based on a platypus. Once it was revealed, a majority of Pokémon fans and non-enthusiasts alike thought its design was ridiculous and over-the-top. They made fun of its clown-like nose and the shell in the middle of its body and even ridiculed its dopey expression. Poor Oshawott, I thought.

Once I realized Oshawott's species was the Sea Otter Pokémon, my initial reaction was, didn't we just have otter Pokémon, Buizel and Floatzel, in the last game? After reading up on Oshawott and its behavior, however, I realized this is a completely different otter Pokémon with its very own weapon attached to its body. Yes, that shell that many have mocked is actually what it uses to defend itself from its foes. The Pokédex says that its shell is called a scalchop, which is a portmanteau of scallop and chop, and that it is made from the same element as its claws. This weapon lets Oshawott learn sword-like moves like Razor Shell, a physical attack that may lower its opponent's Defense.

It may look ugly to some, but to me, Oshawott's features make it look endearing. Its blue body looks like a baby's jumpsuit. Its face has three dots below each eye that indicates where its future whiskers will grow. And its ears are small blue protrusions coming out of its oversized round head. Its English name may come from a mixture of ocean, water, and otter. Its Japanese name Mijumaru comes from mijuku (naïve) and the traditional first-name suffix maru that references its Japanese roots. Ken Sugimori himself stated that Oshawott's evolutionary line is designed with Japanese elements that set it apart from the French and Chinese designs of Snivy and Tepig. As it evolves, Oshawott slowly becomes a samurai skilled at wielding blades that grow from its own body.

I'm sure you can tell by now that I chose Oshawott as my starter when I started Pokémon Black. I try to pick different starter types with each new game I play, and I had already chosen Piplup in Pokémon Platinum. But regardless of this rule, I decided to stick with Oshawott since having a strong Pokémon on my team with Surf is always convenient. Not only is it a good attack, but it is useful when I need to get in the water, and it's a lot more convenient than simply having a Pokémon in my party for its HM move. That's not to say I don't use HM slaves! While its evolutionary line is inspired by Japanese warriors, Oshawott doesn't evolve into a dual Water/Fighting Pokémon. I was hoping it would. But this aside, Oshawott hasn't disappointed me at all and was an awesome addition to my team. Are you tempted to discover Unova alongside Oshawott too?

When it comes time to choose your starter, you may spend a lot of time deliberating which one you want. Some people base their decisions on power, others on looks, and some base it on practicality. No matter how you do it, make sure you have fun with the one you choose. You can always trade for the one you don't get, but you can never trade back the initial memories you make playing a new game with your first Pokémon. Choose the one you want and have fun exploring all the new Pokémon Unova has to offer! Look forward to my review of the game tomorrow!

6 Comments

Just got my UK copy this Saturday morning [stupid Play.com and not understanding that when I meant pre-order, I meant for the day it releases] - and I choose Oshawott [as I've wanted to since it was unveiled]!

I was hoping for a Water/Fighting final evo too actually [like an upright humanoid Tai Chi Master of sorts] - but from what I've seen the one he has looks coolio as well.

I have no real idea as to what moves he can learn though [I like to play with my favourites as Karen of the Johto E4 liked to say regardless, and I pretty much went on Pokemon news blackout after the JPN release], so the discovery will be even more fun. xD

And on another starter note, who else groaned when Tepig's final evo was Fire/Fighting [it's only the third time in a row now game devs]...? -_-

Wolf said:

Helluva lot of poke'-news going on recently. I have a wee soft spot for the franchise but there's limits.
C'mmon guys, there's other games out there too.

April said:

^^ This is a series devoted to Pokémon, Wolf. No. 18 of 649. Hint hint?

VoiceOfGosh said:

@Wolf: How could we even be called gaymers if we didn't have an interest in other games? Of course we play other games! :D This is just the current spat of gaming news because Pokemon is a world renowned franchise. There are no limits, though, when it comes to fans and their favorite franchises/game series. Why would anyone even try to put a cap on something as huge as pokemon. Mario is the only other character in the history of video games to gross more money from the public. Pokemon comes in 2nd place, so of course there's gonna be a mountain of news! XP


Anyways, I was waiting for Oshawott to be my starter too! I remember its image being released when the other three starters were shown and I quickly became attached to its look. I was a bit disappointed at first when I saw the final evolution of Oshawott because I expected a bipedal pokemon and initially thought it was purely a quadruped. When I discovered that the shell-like armor on Samurott's arms were sheath and shell swords my choice starter was set in my mind!

Check it out:

http://archives.bulbagarden.net/media/upload/thumb/0/0a/Unova_starters_evolution_artwork.png/536px-Unova_starters_evolution_artwork.png

aaaaand this one for funsies (don't mind the nonsense grammar at the bottom):

http://fc08.deviantart.net/fs70/i/2010/325/1/0/comic_strip__daikenki_haters_by_dnartsocean-d33al4i.jpg

Mwahaha!!!

I really think I picked the best match for my tastes! I hope everyone else is enjoying their new starters! :D

nuriko said:

FUNNIEST POKEMON EVER ON THE SHOW!! I named mine Oscar!!

Sido said:

I just started my Pokemon White game and I am happy to know that others have also taken to a a liking for Oshawott. I was kinda torn between Tepig and Oshawott but I just gave in to the sad/underdog demeanor of this starter. I actually find it adorable and I was hoping that its ultimate evo would still have these qualities. But when I saw that it wielded a sword I was happy that I chose a kickass sword-wielding pokemon. And yeah, it makes surfing easier.

And girls who like girls who like rumble packs!

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Sido on I Choose You! #18 - Oshawott: I just started my Pokemon White game and I am happy to know that others have also taken to a...

nuriko on I Choose You! #18 - Oshawott: FUNNIEST POKEMON EVER ON THE SHOW!! I named mine Oscar!!...

VoiceOfGosh on I Choose You! #18 - Oshawott: @Wolf: How could we even be called gaymers if we didn't have an interest in other games? Of course we...

April on I Choose You! #18 - Oshawott: ^^ This is a series devoted to Pokémon, Wolf. No. 18 of 649. Hint hint?...

Wolf on I Choose You! #18 - Oshawott: Helluva lot of poke'-news going on recently. I have a wee soft spot for the franchise but there's limits. C'mmon...

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