Tuesday, July 5, 2011

44. Gloom

Recently I updated to Ubuntu 11.04, and something about VisualBoy Advance didn't like it. Because look what happened to LeafGreen!

This is only with my Pokemon games, and appears to be a permanent corruption. But they're still playable; in fact, it's like my computer was privy to my obvious love for high-contrast images. Look at it! It's Pokemon Noir. I'm not trusting that nurse with any of my pokemon.

(And I am emulating in the first place, because I've grown to hate the Pokemon series' lack of a multiple save feature; you can't start a new game on a cartridge without killing all your babies.)

Anyway what does this have to do with Gloom why can't you see it looks gloomy

We've seen pokemon sprites shooting lightning sparks, and spitting fire, but none of them match the special effects work seen on some of these Glooms, even through Gold and Silver when such things were out of fashion. And Gloom's effects are even cooler than fire and lightning, because they represent what I can only assume to be a personal cloud of pestilence. Gloom is the Pigpen of the Pokemon universe.

Gloom was overlooked in that one list of creepy pokedex entries, but I think it still provides a gem or two. Observe: “The fluid that oozes from its mouth isn't drool. It is a nectar that is used to attract prey. / ...[The nectar] is very sticky and clings stubbornly if touched. / ...Although sweet, [the nectar] smells too repulsive to get very close. / ...However, around 1 out of 1,000 people enjoy sniffing its nose-bending stink. / The smell from its drool-like syrup and the pollen on its petals is so bad, it may make opponents faint. / From its mouth Gloom drips honey that smells absolutely horrible. Apparently, it loves the horrid stench. It sniffs the noxious fumes and then drips even more of its honey. / ...One whiff of the honey can result in memory loss. Some fans are said to enjoy this overwhelming stink, however. / Its pistils exude an incredibly foul odor. The horrid stench can cause fainting at a distance of 1.25 miles.”

So, to review, Gloom's drool tastes sweet but smells awful, is actually used to catch prey, works in conjunction with pistils and pollen that also have this power, can cause people to pass out from kilometers away, or lose their memory with one whiff, and some fans actively seek this out, and Gloom itself enjoys it. Gloom: the narcotic pokemon. Continuing their great interpretation of the Oddish family, I can recall Gold and Silver having Gloom a few times as a Rocket grunt pokemon, and that seems fitting. Now we know what all those trainers in the Celadon City gym were enamoured with. Plus with its staggering, and bright orange, bobtail leaf-hair, and pronounced lips, its design appears to be based on everyone's Xanax-addicted mother.

By the way, the sprites I put together up there are male sprites from D/P on. When given the choice between two sprites, I tend to pick the ones with the bigger features, or more spots or spikes or whatever the case may be. This time I had extra incentive though, because:

I'm pretty sure no plant will ever have a pattern like that on it. Because they look like nipples.

The Winner:
HeartGold and SoulSilver

At first I was leaning towards Silver, because its pestilence is especially effective and it has a nice drunken swagger. Red and Blue's is also pretty serviceable; I like its mouth properly agape. Yellow's would be good if its colouration here didn't physically hurt my eyes (actually, I need to read up on how the colouration for those original GameBoy sprites even works, since they were designed before the GameBoy Colour. By what sorcery do GBCs convert old games?).

But the thing that grabs me about this HG/SS sprite is that, for lacking the farcical imbalance of the others, it takes on a certain dignity. Look at its somber tragedy! It by far pays the most pixel service to Gloom's droopy eyelids. Its drool drips not out of a sprite-implied compromised state, but out of permanent nature, and this Gloom looks painfully cognizant of that fact. It will drip that way forever.


  1. Please come back soon dude, i miss your awesome sprite reviews!

  2. Yes, please come back! These reviews are nothing short of amazing and I check here several times daily wishing to find a new review. When I see the Gloom review at the top I feel that exact way, Gloomy. Please come back!

  3. I'm the same as both the above! Come back. :(

  4. Moar reviews plz? I love your reviews and I constantly check for new ones. :) I'm alsways sad to see the one I've already read at the top still. :( I'm always super excited to see new ones, and then I read them and have to wait like a month for the next one. :( Please write MOAR!!!!!! :)

  5. Thank you for reading you guys, and showing completely irrational faith in my updating

  6. Let's see what I remember reading about Game Boy game colors... Red, Green, and Blue got colors on the Super Game Boy, while Yellow, Gold, and Silver got palettes for both the Super Game Boy and Game Boy Color, except Yellow didn't get Game Boy Color colors in Japan because it was so early there.

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