The Pokemon Rarity Factor

By Leonie Herson

As the Pokemon craze continues with the eventual release of the Black and White versions for the US, it seems that rare Pokemon from all generations are becoming a more common sight. Events which enable us to receive rare Pokemon are continuously appearing, mainly as special promotions. For most gamers, this makes their quest to catch them all much easier. For example, take a look at the alternate color, or shiny Pokemon. Prior to Diamond, Pearl and Platinum, for a collector to catch a shiny Pokemon was seen as a novelty as the chance of finding one was (and still is) 1/8192. To put this in perspective: you would have to run into 8192 pidgeys to find one shiny, and even then there is no definite chance that on the 8193rd go the next pidgey would be shiny. It was purely based on luck, and lots of it.

The second generation was the first time a shiny Pokemon could be caught as part of the storyline, the red gyarados. Due to the Poke radar in generation four, the new method of chaining and breeding methods have made it easier to find these elusive treasures. As good as this may be, as more shining Pokemon are given away can we still call them rare?

As another example, let’s take a look at the new species Pokemon Mew. The only way to obtain a mew in Pokemon Blue, Red or Yellow was to follow a careful set of instructions eventually leading to a battle against it. As the years went, Mew was able to be caught on Faraway Island in Pokemon Emerald as a special event; then eventually becoming downloadable via Nintendo Wifi to either Pokemon Heartgold or Soulsilver. For dedicated older players who owned the original Pokemon games, does it mean all the effort they took to find mew before was in vain? Then again, younger players who never had the originals now have a chance to catch and train this special Pokemon.

In a more personal opinion, it would seem unjust to only have one be all and end all event for a specific rare Pokemon; new gamers should get the opportunity as well. And later on if a player has too many mews or shining Pokemon to count, it’s better than to not have any at all.

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