Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The logic on Pokemon type relations

Written by pikaby

(image from Pokedream)

If you've played a Pokemon game, you know how important the type matchups are. Dealing super effective hits are key to winning battles fast, and taking down all the type-specific Gym Leaders with them. Some make perfect sense, like why is fire weak to water? Duh, water puts out fire. Why is Rock weak to grass? Plants absorb nutrients from the soil, and drain both rocks and the ground.

Others...meh, not so much. Comment or something if you can enlighten me on how these type alignments actually work.

First up, Poison to Bug. Why the hell isn't Poison super effective against Bug? Isn't that what bug spray/insecticide is for? They're poisons designed to kill INSECTS. Why won't it be effective?
My trusty can of Shieldtox. Roaches be gone. 

Second, Poison to Steel. Steel is completely immune to poisons. Not to acid, however. You don't have to know basic chemistry to know acid melts/corrodes metals. In fact, it corrodes pretty much anything. Acid counts as a poison, so why not? Acid is even used as an attack in the game too!

Next, Poison to...argh, Poison to pretty much just anything. If Poison weren't just super effective to just ONE element it would've been a whole lot more useful. It might make more sense too.

Next is Fighting to Dark. I can't find the relationship between is dark power weak to..say...Chuck Norris or Bruce Lee? Wait. Okay, maybe it does make a little sense.

Another point is Bug to Dark, and Ghost to Dark. Dark-types are weak to Bug types, which I find hard to believe. Does that mean you can take down Ganondorf by shoving a giant stag beetle in his face? The Legend of Zelda: King of Insects. Yeah, sure. Dark-types are resistant to Ghost-types, another matchup that makes little sense to me.

Ice to Dragon? Probably some Ice Age reference....I always think of the Dragon-type Pokemon as dinosaurs- they went extinct when the world froze over, indicating their intense hatred of the cold stuff. But Dragon to Dragon? Why is it super effective? Maybe they couldn't find any other weakness for Dragon-types since they're supposed to be like super awesome and stuff.

Psychic to Bug...I imagine someone meditating and then a mosquito comes by and disturbs him. The dude tries to swat off the bugger and continue with his mental training, but to no avail. He is frustrated and his concentration breaks. That explains it nicely. And then he reaches out for my can of Shieldtox to finish it off.
Okay, enough talking about bug spray....let's continue.

Fighting to Poison...why is it not very effective? You come into contact with poison and your skin peels off or something, right? Then why doesn't the same rules apply to Normal type moves(which also mostly involve physical contact)? Or most other physical moves, to be more general? Makes no sense for just the Fighting type to be not very effective.

Normal/Fighting to Ghost makes sense, you can't touch a spectre with your hands. But on the same note, I've seen moves of other elements miss completely in the anime simply because the Gastly disappeared right in front of Ash. WTF? They hit perfectly in the game....well, if the anime rules were applied here Ghost-type Pokemon would be broken. As in too good.

Rock to Ground doesn't make much sense either. Why isn't it effective? You smash the ground with a huge rock you expect it to give way a little, right? No? Then what about Pokemon with ten times your strength? Surely they can do that.

Ground attacks don't do a thing to Flying types, which makes sense, but why does Sand Attack hit? It's Ground type too, in case you haven't noticed.

Electric is not very effective against Grass, that I know, because wood doesn't conduct electricity. But when lightning strikes a tree it catches on fire. Effective? I think so, but in a different way.

If you can find ways to make sense of some of these nonsense Pokemon type matchups, do give me a call. I'll be busy destroying the Elite Four with my super effective moves with extreme prejudice.


  1. A lot of those make no sense, especially Poison to Steel. I wish I had an explanation.


    1. While it's true acid destroys metal, poisons used as a defense mechanism by living organisms(snakes,.etc) would have no effect on something as a robot for example. Therefore this would to an extent explain why steel is immune to poison.

  2. I also think much type matchups are strange, but the creators of pokemon know why. Someone really made the type chart and thought is was logical or something. It's very strange.
    Also, some type of moves are super effective against another type of pokemon, and the attack of the type of that pokemon isn't not very effective to that other type.
    For example:
    Fire is super effective against grass and grass is not very effective against fire.
    And fire is not very effective against dragon, but dragon does normal damage to a fire pokemon.
    Also, some types are super effective against themselves, some are not very effective and some are normal. I don't get why you would be weak to yourself. :S

  3. Dude, I totally know how you feel about some of these, especially Poison to
    Bug! It used to beat Bug, and it wasn't causing a huge imbalance, so it makes no sense to change it! Also, I really think that Electric should beat Steel because of the same reason it beats Water (it conducts it!). I think many of them were for the purpose of making double resistances against really strong types, like Poison's resistance to Fighting. Although, you could say that it resists Fighting because Fighting moves involve precision and chopping moves meant to take out otherwise hard to break things and, since Poisons can make your body very jelly-like, moves like those aren't very effective. I think the reason Ground resists Rock is because if you have rocks thrown at you, the best thing to do is hide in a trench, I guess. Thanks for the debate, I know where you're coming from!

  4. Psychic is a type based on the mind, and your mind are subjected to common fears such as the Dark, fear of Insects like spiders and roaches, and Ghosts.

  5. If you remember kouga, the ninja poison gym leader, i think they equate poison to ninja and fighting to samurai, implying thay ninjas kill samurai. If dragons are cold blooded, it explains their weakness to ice. If you smash a rock on the ground, the ground doesn't do much but the rock breaks. Also, if ground = sand, erosion breaks down rocks. Necromancy is considered a dark art and explains why dark is effective against ghost. The only reason lightning sets trees on fire is because its so fricking powerful. Practically no insulator can withstand it.

  6. Poison to Bug: I agree

    Poison to Steel: Steel isn't organic, so poison can't cause chemical reactions within the organism to destroy its functions and kill it. As for acid maybe they should change it.

    Fighting to Dark: Brave people don't fear the dark.

    Bug to Dark: Most Bugs love the dark and so aren't afraid of it definitely.

    Dark to Ghost: Not too sure... maybe because ghosts linger in the darkness and so Darkness is used to having ghosts around it? xD

    Psychic to Bug: Insects have a lot faster reflexes (if i'm not wrong), so they can out-think psychic people i guess.

    Fighting to Poison: I think you have to drop the idea of poison=acid=corrosion.

    Rock to Ground: The earth manipulates rocks, in the sense that it earthquakes can demolish rock structures, movement of the crust creates mountains, magma within the earth cools to form rocks etc.

    Hope it helps!

  7. For the psychic to bug, psychic represents the mind. And generally people are scared of bugs. Same way that people are scared of the dark. That's why bug and dark moves work against a psychic type.