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Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Iono is a Twit and Twerp Paldean Gym Leader (plus Bellibolt)

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - What a repulsive individual, pursuing her hobby that doesn't hurt other people!

Yesterday, The Pokémon Company International promised “🚨 New Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet information is coming this week! 🚨 ” That was surprising, given last week's 14-minute Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet video (that had far from 14 minutes of new information, but still)

This is the... new information. Feel free to NOT watch this, especially not the whole way through, because it's quite difficult:

Iono is a streamer (what content she streams isn't immediately clear) and “influencer” (what kind of idiots would want to be influenced by her is unclear) and also the gym leader of Levincia, which is some kind of municipality within the Paldea region. Her type of choice is the Electric type. Not seen if you don't watch the video are her Magnemite-style hairpins that can... move, but are not sentient. She has a partner Pokémon but we don't know what it is. We're told it's squishy, not Magnemite, sluggish but easygoing, has two big bumps on its head that people think are eyes (but aren't), an Electric type, and its body expands and contracts to generate electricity in its stomach. Iono also believes her partner is cute. That's all the information.

Pokémon Scarlet Violet Iono Levincia Gym Leader Paldea wink
Paldea must be an incredibly weak region for this person to be a gym leader.
We went from Lt. Surge (HE FOUGHT IN THE UNSPECIFIED WAR) to this.

The main reason I'm bothering to write this article instead of ignoring Iono is that I see a lot of people claiming that Iono is GAME FREAK's take on a VTuber. Now, I'm not an expert in VTubers or VTubing, and I in fact avoid watching any content presented by one of these things, but my understanding is that it's a Virtual YouTuber. They're voiced by the actual person but an animated, virtual representation of them (fueled by some kind of motion capture?) is moving around the screen as their avatar.

But if you watch Iono (again, totally optional and not recommended activity), that's actually her bouncing around in front of the camera acting like a fool. Sure, there is a LOT of production value in that video and she must have a super team supporting her (and it must be expensive, which is why the stream is only three and a half minutes long and doesn't actually answer the question of who her partner is), but it's all live and in the flesh. If you go and visit her at Levincia, you'll fight her and she'll look like she does on the screen. You could probably touch her. I'd recommend punching her in the mouth so she gets to see the dentist again, because they clearly did a bad job with her. Maybe tear her hair out so she looks less like a pastel version if the protagonist of Fire Emblem Engage.

Important reminder that fighting the gym leaders is only one of the three stories in Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet. If what they said about the three stories being independent and your choice is true, then that means you could go through the game and the end credits and have a satisafactory conclusion without ever fighting a gym leader. Which means you might never have to watch or encounter Iono if you play through Scarlet or Violet. That's a blessing.

Update for October 14, 2022. Iono released another video revealing her partner Pokémon, named Bellibolt, the EleFrog Pokémon. The video itself is still incredibly cringe-inducing, so have this still image instead:

Iono Bellibolt stream time for screencaps Pokémon Scarlet Violet EleFrog
The yellow dots in the centre of its head are its eyes. The eye-looking bumps on the sides are not eyes.

Bellibolt has the new Electromorphosis ability, which basically turns the move Charge into an ability. When Bellibolt gets damaged, its next Electric attack will be boosted in power. By how much power? We don't know. Charge doubled it.

Ludwig wonders if there will be another video coming soon from Iono to actually answer who her partner Pokémon is, and if so, if he needs to waste another article of the day on that. Hopefully not. What do you think of Iono? Do you want to violently eliminate her stream? Or just peacefully not watch it? Or...are you actually into this sort of content and you watch VTubers? Why would you do that?

New news release two weeks later: Greavard, the Ghost Dog.


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