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RaZoR LeAf
27th January 2006, 5:43 PM
I know how it goes, Trainer Fics are one of the most unoriginal and overdone fics that exist. But there are some that have that wow factor, and make you want to read them. I'm eager to get into writing my trainer fic (Generation Omega), but I'm still searching for that factor that will make it interesting to read, aside from it's main plot difference, and not just another trainer fic.

What I have so far includes (and i'm trying to avoid spoilers):
Irregular Gym order
Unique and unseen attacks
New battling style, conditions, etc
No 'Team Something'

I'm worried this just seems like something different to do, but not something that will keep people reading. I'm worried that people will read it and think "Oh yeah so he's got a ground type using an electric attack that's stupid" and leave it at that, without staying around to find out why it has that kind of attack.

Anyone care to shed some light on the mystery of a successful Trainer fic, or share some wisdom?

xXSaberXx
27th January 2006, 6:35 PM
D: HM.

Good trainer fics.........

Well honestly, mine was never as planned out as detailedly (MADE UP WORD LOL) as yours from the begining. I found though, as I continued to write, that it was easier to go along and add things as I went. D: So I really don't know what I've done EXACTLY in my fic....but yeah.


THINGS TO ADD/KEEP IN MIND:

1. Detailed character feelings/interactions with people/pokemon/themselves.

I'm sure you already are going to do this, but keep in mind that there is a certain level to which it can be done and then a certain level where it just gets boring. I would try and go for somewhere in between, bordering on the level where it can be done. Then, simply whip out a can of whoop ***** and have a nifty description. :D

2. Pokebots=No.

You know this too. :P

3. Interesting plot.

No matter what you spice it up with, it will always be the same GYM LEAUGE LOL. Think of what happens BEYOND that. :D

hope I helped.

PDL
27th January 2006, 6:38 PM
one thing to remember when trying to be original in an original trainer fic is to...

STAY THE HELL AWAY FROM WHAT'S BEEN DONE IN THE ANIME'S PLOT!

most terrible trainer fics begin with the trainer waking up late and missing out on the usual starters and getting some kind of special pokemon.

also, don't even think about using canon characters from the anime, especially if they happened to be related to your main character

game characters are a possiblity if your trainer fic takes place in an established region rather then one you created yourself.

RaZoR LeAf
27th January 2006, 6:59 PM
Well the only Anime character as such I have is gary Oak, taking over from Professor oak, but the characters are also related in the game, and gary is the optional name there too (Blue doesn't sound at all realistic) but since he's only in it for a bit, I don't see that as much of a problem. I do hope to mock the anime later on. I'm hoping that the Gym League will only be part of the story, and that some time into the fic, it'll go in a totally different direction.

Also what are pokebots? I've heard the term, but i'm not 100% sure of what it's refering to exactly.

PDL
27th January 2006, 7:05 PM
Also what are pokebots? I've heard the term, but i'm not 100% sure of what it's refering to exactly.

pokemon with no personality whatsoever, all they do it get called out by the main character, use an attack and get recalled back into the ball. All without any sort of hint to personality or character... Just like a robot, they're merely convienient tools for the trainer.

RaZoR LeAf
27th January 2006, 8:54 PM
Oh, well there's no chance of that happening, atleast 2 pokemon have ADHD and one is mute.

Guitar dude bill
27th January 2006, 9:03 PM
Well......
I was just so happening to be thinking of making an original trainer fic, which I'm gonna start writing since I can't write my current one. And my plans were

-Finds pokemon from sea
-Leads a normal life before going on it
-Gets fascinated by pokeball
-Pretends he's gonna get one from somewhere else and stores pokeball in bag
-Goes to a beggining trainer tournament
-Discovers the gym challenges
-Defeats Roxanne
-Finds Brawly isn't in gym

Find some reason why Brawly isn't there and twist the plot to something. I haven't revealed my full plan. But it's similar.

The Big Al
27th January 2006, 9:17 PM
Well, I'm working on kind of an experiment with my latest fan fic. Instead of journeying, the trainers live together in buildings and travel short distances. I've been working of the on the people and in my nexter couple of chapters I hope to work on the personalties of the Pokemon. (They haven't had much chance to show personalty.) So you're not the only one trying to make a better trainer fic.

Chibi Pika
27th January 2006, 10:35 PM
Well, my main fic is a Trainer Fic ('course...it has no gym battles XP), and I've seen lot's of 'em done right. Usually gyms are best to avoid, but they can be pulled off, it all just depends on the main plotline, which I'm assuming is not gonna be the journey itself. Actually Trainer Fics, IMO, are among the best genre with some of the best works, it's just that they get stereotyped with all the n00b Journey Fics. Then again, even Journey Fics can work out, so long as the main plotline is unique.

~Chibi~;249;<?>;rukario;

Pinecone Tortoise
28th January 2006, 12:17 AM
Y'know, I think it's part of writing pokefics that every author wants to write a trainer fic at some point or other. And naw, I'm no exception. ^^;; The trick, IMO, is to have something that makes your story different and unique and fascinating. Perhaps because I lack originality, I try to get that 'special quality' in my fics by making it as 'realistic' as I can. Here's a few of the more 'realistic' elements you might wanna consider for your story.

1. Money. It doesn't grown on trees and if your trainer runs out (for whatever reason - squandered on pokedex upgrades/items/accessories, lost in battles, etc.) what will they do to get more? how much money people have to spend affects their lives and probably the style of training (ie, more or less items, less well groomed pokemon, etc, etc)

2. What sort of pokemon get added to the team and why.

3. How will your character cope with the violence of battles? How will her pokemon? Got any pacifists there?

4. What sort of relationship do each of your trainer's pokemon have with their human? What emotional/psychological balances are there in the team? What disrupts these lines of tension?

5. How does travelling really work? I mean, tents by the roadside? Try to make it to little rest houses each day? Just sleep wherever there's a spot? Free pokecentre accomodation? Stay with relatives/friends in different cities?

Meh, these are just a few of the issues I reckon need to be considered to write a 'realistic' trainer journey. Hope this helps! Have fun and good luck!

Piney.
;204;;324;

Yamato-san
28th January 2006, 5:28 AM
5. How does travelling really work? I mean, tents by the roadside? Try to make it to little rest houses each day? Just sleep wherever there's a spot? Free pokecentre accomodation? Stay with relatives/friends in different cities?

You do have to remember that several things in the anime and other canon sources are actually based on Japanese life, so while they don't make too much sense to us, they make perfect sense from a Japanese perspective. As I mentioned in another thread, Pokemon Centers are free because Japanese medical care's free to the public. On the subject of relatives, you'd have to consider that families aren't usually widely spread apart in Japan. Several elders live with their children's families, for instance. Also, the average families consist of up to only two children. Families can be spread out, of course, but seem less likely than in America and other English-speaking countries (especially considering the baby-boom that occured in America a few decades ago).

For that matter, let me tell you about use of culture. In spite of the fact that the game regions are based off of Japan, they are still fictional places in the end. People can and do use that to their advantage and adapt the areas to fit Western lifestyles (there's also the fact that in the English version canon, quite a few aspects were Westernized). But if you are making the setting seem Japanese, for god's sake, do your homework. It's been a while since I said this, but I've seen stories that try to seem Japanese, but fail horribly because the setting seems highly American, just like any other fic, and the characters just seem like otaku, packing manga in their backpacks and using words like "kawaii" in their sentences.

Pinecone Tortoise
28th January 2006, 5:50 AM
You do have to remember that several things in the anime and other canon sources are actually based on Japanese life, so while they don't make too much sense to us, they make perfect sense from a Japanese perspective. As I mentioned in another thread, Pokemon Centers are free because Japanese medical care's free to the public. On the subject of relatives, you'd have to consider that families aren't usually widely spread apart in Japan. Several elders live with their children's families, for instance. Also, the average families consist of up to only two children. Families can be spread out, of course, but seem less likely than in America and other English-speaking countries (especially considering the baby-boom that occured in America a few decades ago).

For that matter, let me tell you about use of culture. In spite of the fact that the game regions are based off of Japan, they are still fictional places in the end. People can and do use that to their advantage and adapt the areas to fit Western lifestyles (there's also the fact that in the English version canon, quite a few aspects were Westernized). But if you are making the setting seem Japanese, for god's sake, do your homework. It's been a while since I said this, but I've seen stories that try to seem Japanese, but fail horribly because the setting seems highly American, just like any other fic, and the characters just seem like otaku, packing manga in their backpacks and using words like "kawaii" in their sentences.

Yah, as Yamato-san noted so clearly, I'm not exactly brushed up on Japanese culture. The culture in my stories is 'loosely canonical' at best. So if you're trying to stay true to the origins of the anime/manga, you might wanna disregard my post. Otherwise, I hope you can put it to good use. Good luck and have fun!

Piney.
;204;;324;

Keleri
28th January 2006, 7:10 AM
The hardest thing about writing a trainer 'fic is that, frankly, reading about someone going out and catching pokémon and winning badges is pretty boring. We've all played the games and we all know what it's like. So, obviously, you have to diversify--but it's hard to do without making your trainer seem 'too special'. Generally it's a good idea not to have them catch a bunch of OMG!speshul!rare!powerful pokémon that obey them right off the bat.

It's also usually a bad idea to make up lots of special rules or bend the canon in an attempt to make it different; generally this simply has the effect of making your character more OMG!speshul. Every step you take towards making your character special and different and someone to whom the canon doesn't apply is a step towards a Mary Sue, which is fine if you're writing for yourself, but most of the time your more astute readers will find this rather grating.

I would much rather see a character struggle and grow and develop while they ride the emotional rollercoaster that is pokémon training (will I win, will I lose, am I strong enough, am I falling behind, do I have enough money to eat, do my pokémon respect me, I can't get them to listen, the pokémon center's full--where will I sleep, how is my mom doing, what if my pokémon get stolen, I'm alone in a strange town with no company but a disobedient bird and a rat, I want to go home... etc. etc.) than to see someone catch rare pokémon with no effort, sweep through the gyms and take on criminal organizations like they're just guys in funny clothes, no big deal...

People have mentioned pokébots, which is a good tip, but I think it's important to mention that pokémon are not little humans. They feel the same emotions, yes, but they do not necessarily share the same values or belief system--unless they've been surrounded by human culture since childhood.

I like to see touches of realism in 'fic, especially in a trainer one: you've got a kid traveling around out on their own, and how many miniature crises do you have when you're safe going to school? Things shouldn't be all sunshine and flowers -all- the time. Research, ask if you're not sure on something. Google+Wikipedia=OTP.

And... yeah, others have brought up good points, etc. etc. I stop rambling now.

Guitar dude bill
28th January 2006, 9:19 AM
Like everyone else said. It needs to have more plot to it than just 'OMG, TRAINER PWNS ROXANNE AND GETS BADGE, FINDS TEAM AQUA/MAGMA TRYING TO EXPAND THE SEA/LANDMASS AND HE'S GOTTA STOP THEM, KEEPS PWNING UNTIL HE GETS TO LEAGUE HQ AND HE'S DEFEATED TEAM AQUA/MAGMA'
Maybe you could make it seem like that first, but then twist it into something bigger. IF you're gonna contain team magma/aqua/rocket, you should NOT make their plans to increase the landmass/sea or get money. And give reasons why he got that pokemon. You also need an original way to obtain it, not prof. birch or parents. If you're trying a journey fic, give it more plot that beat the gyms. The character might want all the badges, so he defeats one, and then something happens to change his mind. If you're going to do ANY gym battle scenes, you MUST pull them off well.

The Big Al
28th January 2006, 1:27 PM
Also, you don't have to stick to the game regions. I'm writing about Royal Oak Michigan in mine. That's the joy of Pokemon fics. Because it's a Pokemon world, you can make it what you like. So perhaps you should leave the regions we know make a setting of your very own.

Another thing I'd like to mention are cars. In my fic, (infact in the chapter I'm currently writing this is discussed in detail) car are a trainers best friend. You're not going to get from Royal Oak to Flint on foot in any short amount of time. Yet a car can get you there in an hour. So that's another to take into consideration.

Klaus
28th January 2006, 11:20 PM
Well, when I started mine. I kinda made it a game plot and then a learned that's not well liked unless it's a parady! So, I decided to start with somethind i'd never done before. I used the personalities that I thought they should have . For example, Kris and Taylor go out on their journey because their mothers forced them too and soon they learn their was a reason the mothers wanted to get them out of the house. I can't really say anything cause I don't want to spoil it but. I try and put a little bit more background into it.

Such as if there was a question unanswered I answer with a answer that seems as if it would make sence. And I like to make my character's a bit more realistic. Like, Taylor being a germ freak and a semi-hippy and I also like playing with established characters from the game such as Elm for instant making him the kind of man he is so, really, all you have to do venture off the road, add more mystery to it and it should be fine. Just avoid the whole " OMG he woke up late and now he gets a Mareep that won't obey him and they venture out and get attacked my a fearce flock of fearow and then they see a legendary..." just stay away from that.

Hope that helped.

As always, be kind to the mime. ;122;

Willow's Tara
29th January 2006, 5:54 AM
Well I started on a trainer fic awhile ago when the character just finished her fifth badge, but then something happens that (I can't spoil it if it comes on here someday) makes the character find her friends and stop whatever it is. Provide a twiat, they can already be in a middle of a battle, or after they finished whatever badge get them to do something else and leave the gym battles behind for awhile.

The Muffin Man
29th January 2006, 11:00 AM
1. Chances are your brilliant or unique idea isn't. No, it's not unusual for your character to suddenly decide to go to another gym first.

2. Don't give the main character Eevee. Especially not a special(i.e stronger, winged, different colored, etc.) Eevee. And if you do wanna give them an Eevee, have it evolve. There are too many damn trainer fics where Eevee doesn't evolve. That's not original. And it gets old fast.

3. Gym Leaders see a dozen people like you a day at the least. Don't have the Leader see something special in you. Maybe they can find your character attractive and flirt a bit(Misty does in RBY) but make sure it's just harmless flirting.

4. Incompetant trainers are far overdone. As are bumbling following running-gags like Jessie and James.

RaZoR LeAf
29th January 2006, 12:36 PM
1. True it's not, but that's not the orignal part of the fic, it's just a little something extra.

2. I hate eevee. Only one of my characters is getting an Eeveelutio, but I doubt very much I will be showing it's prevo form.

3. OK That's a good point I'll note that down. Certainly nothing on the anime level of "oh you cheated" or "oh you saved my precious pokeon have a gum badge for nothing"

4. Can't have incompetant trainers, the history means they stay in school till 16 if they want to be a trainer.

Negrek
29th January 2006, 8:08 PM
4. Can't have incompetant trainers, the history means they stay in school till 16 if they want to be a trainer.
*chokes on breakfast cereal*

What?! Sixteen?! Canonically, trainers start at ten. Changing the canonical age is another enormous no-no, and often incredibly pointless to boot.

Why do you want to do that? If you're going to, you need to have serious backing for it, especially if you want to have your 'fic set in an extant region. And when I say serious backing, it's got to be a reason better than "Cuz it's too dangerous and we must save the chilluns!"

So, yeah, starting late is a bad, bad idea. It can be done, but rarely, rarely, rarely well.

Seiryu
29th January 2006, 9:43 PM
Something on the subject of starter pokémon...

If it's one of the nine conventional starters, then by all means have the main character pick one up from a lab, especially if they already live near the region's head professor's lab! There is nothing--I repeat, nothing--wrong with a new trainer picking up their starter from Professor Oak, Birch, Elm, or whatever.

However, beyond those nine, I would recommend against a starter being received from a Prof. simply because I feel it doesn't make quite as much sense. Even in anime canon, the way I see it is that Pikachu was unusually agressive and disobedient--so much so that Oak himself didn't want to take care of it--and gave it to Ash because he knew of Ash's dream to be a pokémon trainer, and far be it from him to dash a little kid's dreams like that. But not every professor is going to be like Oak was and have a random creature ready to give to every Mary-Sue trainer who happened to be late.

Remember, though, that when it comes to a starter, just about anything is fair game. Even with the "acquisition from a lab" plotline, it's possible to be original.

Another thing: "unoriginal" is not synonymous with "bad." Just because a certain plotline is commonly associated with bad fanfics doesn't mean squat if it's done correctly. If you can take an "unoriginal" idea and execute it better than an "original" one, then by all means, go for it!

Nylf
29th January 2006, 9:48 PM
To say something, here are three ways to break canonitcally(whatever Negrek said):
1) New region, new rules
2) Forget the game and anime
3) Set before/after game or anime.

Yeah, the average parent is going to send a ten-year old child out into the wild with a lizard, fish, bird or mouse. All my OT's have them starting later than ten. In fact the mcs are 14, and in one they're tecnically too young to be journeying, but because of 'intereferance' they were set on their joureny early.

Good way to make an OC. DON'T have all mcs get a Pokemon from Professor Tree. Pokemon can be pets, I doubt they have'nt got a pet Pokemon they can take with them. Unless they're poor, their parents are allergic to Pokemon or their parents are stingy.

Another good way, avoid standard starters, Eevee and Pikachu/Pichu, anything evolved which doesn't have a baby form(Hitmon's, Jynxes etc. don't really work though), or Dratini. Bagon's best avoided as well. Good starters are:

Spearow(common, easy to find, uu)
Nidoran M/F(see above)
Skitty(Great pets, why wouldn't a trainer have one as a starter?)
Houndour(See above)
Growlithe(see above)

I like Skitty as a starter personally. Ralts is good to, and uu.

Finally Team 'something' doesn't have to be avoidedd. Just, make them something better than Team Sky or another TR, TA and TM rip-off. My Team in my EOT(Everything Original Trainer fic, as in new region and Pokemon), are psycotic, mass murdering, secretive, torturous, sadistic 'progressors'. Now what isn't original about that? Besides being called Team Abomination. By Pokemon and themselves. Non recruits who find that out...aren't really going to talk about it. Or breath.

Seijiro Mafuné
29th January 2006, 10:00 PM
I have a comment about the 'receiving Pokémon at the age of ten'.

That only works in the animé canon. If you go by the games, you'll notice that the characters don't go to the lab and receive a Pokémon because they're going on a quest... rather, they receive them for more unorthodox reasons.

That said, it's possible for the ages to change (in my versions, the characters are usually 14).

Negrek
29th January 2006, 10:54 PM
Seijiro is right. If your trainer is not going to be "starting their official league journey," which usually involves getting a pokedex, registering with the league, and speaking with a professor, you can do it at any age. If they receive a pokemon and end up going on a journey for some other reason, it's fine.

However, if they're made to stay in school until sixteen, that contradicts canon entirely, as it would imply that it is impossible to start younger. Also, if you have them start later, you have to deal with other issues, like their getting their rear end handed to them by little twelve-year-olds who've already been on the road for two years.

In response to Nylf's comments:



To say something, here are three ways to break canonitcally(whatever Negrek said):
1) New region, new rules
2) Forget the game and anime
3) Set before/after game or anime.

Yeah, the average parent is going to send a ten-year old child out into the wild with a lizard, fish, bird or mouse. All my OT's have them starting later than ten. In fact the mcs are 14, and in one they're tecnically too young to be journeying, but because of 'intereferance' they were set on their joureny early.

1. The new region, new rules does occasionally work. I have used it to send trainers off at eleven instead of ten. However, this only works in a region completely set off from the canonical ones: Johto, Kanto, and Hoenn. There's not even a League in Orre, so it doesn't count.

If there was any interaction with the other Leagues, you would expect to see certain standards adopted universally so that trainers could easily range between them. What would happen if a bunch of eleven-year-old trainers from Kanto showed up in your sixteen-up region? Wouldn't that cause a bit of a stir? It could be done if the League completely closed its borders to trainers from other Leagues, but the shake-up that would ensue would be considerable, and would have to be addressed in the piece.

2. Then you're writing original fiction, not fanfiction.

3. This could work, but again, handling different time periods would mean radical other differences in training and such as well. The start of journey age is something traditional, and something that's going to be very difficult to pound out of a region, or into it, for that matter. This would be changing the entire face of your story just to allow your trainer to start a little late, which, IMO, is not worth it.

Yamato-san
29th January 2006, 11:16 PM
*chokes on breakfast cereal*

What?! Sixteen?! Canonically, trainers start at ten. Changing the canonical age is another enormous no-no, and often incredibly pointless to boot.

Why do you want to do that? If you're going to, you need to have serious backing for it, especially if you want to have your 'fic set in an extant region. And when I say serious backing, it's got to be a reason better than "Cuz it's too dangerous and we must save the chilluns!"

So, yeah, starting late is a bad, bad idea. It can be done, but rarely, rarely, rarely well.

It could be for aesthetic reasons. Adolescent individuals just look better than children that haven't even hit puberty. They're more rugged, sexy, bear a stronger resemblance to the majority of authority figures in the world, yet still have so much more of their lives ahead of them and have almost as much to experience as a child would (why else are the majority of anime protagonists around the age of 16?). Of course, this doesn't really work unless you intend on making character artwork or certain other things, but you know, the author could be doing it because the author's picturing the characters and scenarios playing out in their head, so of course aesthetics would be directly affecting them, even if it doesn't affect the reader in the same way.

The author could also just wanna put the characters in situations that would seem unusual for a child to be in. Romance, for instance. Given, people put children in those situations often, but that's where most of the complaints like "they're not at that age yet!" come in. An adolescent is usually stronger and capable of doing more things than a child could, as well.


2. Don't give the main character Eevee. Especially not a special(i.e stronger, winged, different colored, etc.) Eevee. And if you do wanna give them an Eevee, have it evolve. There are too many damn trainer fics where Eevee doesn't evolve. That's not original. And it gets old fast.

Actually, the common case scenario I keep hearing is someone makes up their own evolution for Eievui, which brings up another point: fan-made Pokemon. There are 391 species so far (counting the currently released 4th gens), variants to some of those species (Unown and Deoxys), a differently-colored counterpart to each one (as freakishly rare as they may be), and even more species to come. I'd suggest using them. A majority of fan-made Pokemon could just as easily be replaced by an existing Pokemon, and all it really does is annoy the hell out of some of us when we have to try and picture what it looks like. Though, I don't object to mutating some existing species to make them more terrorizing than they are (movie 4's Celebi Golem, AG movie 1's Meta-Groudon) or whatever.

PDL
29th January 2006, 11:16 PM
maybe it would be best to analyze why Taraji-san chose the age of 10 as the age to start the pokemon journey in the first place.

basically, 10 years is basically the age when children are no longer just "mere children". They are now old enough to be intrusted with the care of living creatures with uniquie personalities and temperments. chosing a starter pokemon is basically a coming of age ritual.

Apparently in the pokemon universe, these children are also able to venture out into the world with just these creatures as protection. Completely unlike the real world where it's pretty much impossible for a child of the same age to do the same thing.

but 10 years is just the youngest that a person has to be to train pokemon, anyone older is able to start training, even if that person is of retirement age!


which brings up another point: fan-made Pokemon.

9 times out of ten, fan-made pokemon tend to suck. Hard.

but that's an entirely different can of worms.

Negrek
29th January 2006, 11:21 PM
It could be for aesthetic reasons. Adolescent individuals just look better than children that haven't even hit puberty. They're more rugged, sexy, bear a stronger resemblance to the majority of authority figures in the world, yet still have so much more of their lives ahead of them and have almost as much to experience as a child would (why else are the majority of anime protagonists around the age of 16?). Of course, this doesn't really work unless you intend on making character artwork or certain other things, but you know, the author could be doing it because the author's picturing the characters and scenarios playing out in their head, so of course aesthetics would be directly affecting them, even if it doesn't affect the reader in the same way.

Oh, of course. I understand the allure of it--I like working better with older characters myself--but it doesn't compute, logicall, with the writing aspect.

PDL is right. Again, nothing wrong with having trainers start later, but it is wrong to make it impossible for them to start earlier.

The Big Al
29th January 2006, 11:55 PM
What?! Sixteen?! Canonically, trainers start at ten. Changing the canonical age is another enormous no-no, and often incredibly pointless to boot.
I had a trainer start at EIGHTEEN in one of my earliest fanfics. Even in the one I'm writing now, none of the main characters is younger than 15. The canon is flawed especially when it comes to age. Really, the canon only has a hold on the basic concept of pokemon, rest is up to you. That's why writing Pokemon fan fiction is so much fun. Not mention you find yourself with conflicting canon anyway so you might as well make up your own.

Why do you want to do that? If you're going to, you need to have serious backing for it, especially if you want to have your 'fic set in an extant region. And when I say serious backing, it's got to be a reason better than "Cuz it's too dangerous and we must save the chilluns!"
Perhaps so trainers are educated so in case of the highly probable event they drop out of training they aren't out in the world with a fourth grade education.

So, yeah, starting late is a bad, bad idea. It can be done, but rarely, rarely, rarely well.
Seriously, why are you acting like the canon is so strict and anything that flies in the face of canon is bad. Live a little. Think outside of the box. Have fun writing about how YOU see the Pokemon world, not the designers. Pokemon is blank slate canon wise. You can make your own setting, own characters, own rules. As you follow some basics about pokemon and battling, you're all set. So people are older when they start. I think it's a great idea because a 16 years would be more qualified to be a trainer than a ten year old.

Here's something, don't make training the dream job. I know only the Ono manga discusses it, but making Pokemon training something that requires a calling and that many try and fail. It would be more reasonable that not everyone is a pokemon trainer.

My advice, make your own world, mix canons, make your own canon (as long as you stick to it), and have a blast.

Act
30th January 2006, 12:02 AM
My advice, make your own world, mix canons, make your own canon (as long as you stick to it), and have a blast.

Make Your Own Canon! (TM)

AKA, write an original fic. Canon is what makes it a pokemon fic. And yes, when you stretch canon, you need a good reason. Obviously you don't have any younger siblings-- fourth and fifth graders are fully capable people, and even moreso if the ability to live by onesself was fostered since they were young.

Though, I'm not sure how what Negrek said got 'stop making trainging seem easy' out of you. The whole challenge in writing a good OT is to not make it too perfect-- it isn't easy, especially for someone younger. You don't make them older so it's easier, you keep than young and work with it. That'd be the point.

Jash Thor
30th January 2006, 12:07 AM
I don't see why it's so wrong to raise the age limit for starting a journey. Why do you guys see that as so taboo? Because it's canonically wrong? The drinking age for the United States used to be 18 years old, and was later changed to 21. Why can't someone write a story that operates under the same basic premise, whereas the league decided 10 years old was far to young and decided to raise the age to 16? I mean, if it completely contradicts your context, then you can't do it (for example, if you were to write about the anime characters). But there's no reason as to why you can't.

Sure, it may disrupt the canon foundations, but it's not totally illogical. It's been done before. The games never speicifically claimed the official age to be 10 years old (unless I'm mistaken and they have, but I would still stand by my argument). So if you're writing a fanfic seperate from the anime, there should be no reason as to why you can't make it an older starting age. You'd just have to change the setting to be a later date.

The Big Al
30th January 2006, 12:08 AM
Well, the human canon of Pokemon is rather small. Of course the canon of Pokemon being kept in little balls and fighting should be kept. However, because little is made of the human side of Pokemon, you should see it as a Blank check. For one thing, you don't have to stay in the regions made in the games and anime. You can make your neighborhood and the surrounding area the setting if you want and would make the culture and backgrounds different and so you would have to make your own canon on that. As long as you stick to it faithfully and make it consistant and believable, you will work out.

RaZoR LeAf
30th January 2006, 1:05 AM
*chokes on breakfast cereal*

What?! Sixteen?! Canonically, trainers start at ten. Changing the canonical age is another enormous no-no, and often incredibly pointless to boot.

Why do you want to do that? If you're going to, you need to have serious backing for it, especially if you want to have your 'fic set in an extant region. And when I say serious backing, it's got to be a reason better than "Cuz it's too dangerous and we must save the chilluns!"

So, yeah, starting late is a bad, bad idea. It can be done, but rarely, rarely, rarely well.

Because a mutegenic virus changed pokemon into a species that far surpasses the power of the canon pokemon, and as such trainers are required to have a basic education in order to train in a much more advanced world, where a immature ten year old would not survive. The reasons are all fully explained in the prolgue that consits of the entire history.


Another good way, avoid standard starters, Eevee and Pikachu/Pichu, anything evolved which doesn't have a baby form(Hitmon's, Jynxes etc. don't really work though), or Dratini. Bagon's best avoided as well. Good starters are:

Spearow(common, easy to find, uu)
Nidoran M/F(see above)
Skitty(Great pets, why wouldn't a trainer have one as a starter?)
Houndour(See above)
Growlithe(see above)

I like Skitty as a starter personally. Ralts is good to, and uu.

This will all be shown in chapter one so it's not really a spoiler, but starting trainers are given two pokemon that match their personality and level of experience in school. Yes, two pokemon, as I said, the league is significantly more advanced.


Finally Team 'something' doesn't have to be avoidedd. Just, make them something better than Team Sky or another TR, TA and TM rip-off. My Team in my EOT(Everything Original Trainer fic, as in new region and Pokemon), are psycotic, mass murdering, secretive, torturous, sadistic 'progressors'. Now what isn't original about that? Besides being called Team Abomination. By Pokemon and themselves. Non recruits who find that out...aren't really going to talk about it. Or breath.

If I said anything about teams I'd be giving away too much plot. Suffice to say, Team Rocket is dead and buried.


Seijiro is right. If your trainer is not going to be "starting their official league journey," which usually involves getting a pokedex, registering with the league, and speaking with a professor, you can do it at any age. If they receive a pokemon and end up going on a journey for some other reason, it's fine.

However, if they're made to stay in school until sixteen, that contradicts canon entirely, as it would imply that it is impossible to start younger. Also, if you have them start later, you have to deal with other issues, like their getting their rear end handed to them by little twelve-year-olds who've already been on the road for two years.

It's set in the future, so there is a reason for the requirements. It's not contradicting the canon as far as I see, other than it's not some happy pussy land where everyone is friendly and 10 year olds wander streets alone and don't get mugged.


In response to Nylf's comments:


To say something, here are three ways to break canonitcally(whatever Negrek said):
1) New region, new rules
2) Forget the game and anime
3) Set before/after game or anime.

Yeah, the average parent is going to send a ten-year old child out into the wild with a lizard, fish, bird or mouse. All my OT's have them starting later than ten. In fact the mcs are 14, and in one they're tecnically too young to be journeying, but because of 'intereferance' they were set on their joureny early.

1. The new region, new rules does occasionally work. I have used it to send trainers off at eleven instead of ten. However, this only works in a region completely set off from the canonical ones: Johto, Kanto, and Hoenn. There's not even a League in Orre, so it doesn't count.

If there was any interaction with the other Leagues, you would expect to see certain standards adopted universally so that trainers could easily range between them. What would happen if a bunch of eleven-year-old trainers from Kanto showed up in your sixteen-up region? Wouldn't that cause a bit of a stir? It could be done if the League completely closed its borders to trainers from other Leagues, but the shake-up that would ensue would be considerable, and would have to be addressed in the piece.

2. Then you're writing original fiction, not fanfiction.

3. This could work, but again, handling different time periods would mean radical other differences in training and such as well. The start of journey age is something traditional, and something that's going to be very difficult to pound out of a region, or into it, for that matter. This would be changing the entire face of your story just to allow your trainer to start a little late, which, IMO, is not worth it.

1. Like I said, there is a reason. I'll link to the prologue I posted for preview at the end of my post.
2. Fanfiction does not have to be exactly the same as the game or anime. It can be AU, and still based on the same set up or take place in the same world. How can it be original fiction if I'm using pokemon?
3. Perhaps.


maybe it would be best to analyze why Taraji-san chose the age of 10 as the age to start the pokemon journey in the first place.

basically, 10 years is basically the age when children are no longer just "mere children". They are now old enough to be intrusted with the care of living creatures with uniquie personalities and temperments. chosing a starter pokemon is basically a coming of age ritual.

Apparently in the pokemon universe, these children are also able to venture out into the world with just these creatures as protection. Completely unlike the real world where it's pretty much impossible for a child of the same age to do the same thing.

but 10 years is just the youngest that a person has to be to train pokemon, anyone older is able to start training, even if that person is of retirement age!

9 times out of ten, fan-made pokemon tend to suck. Hard.

but that's an entirely different can of worms.

I wouldn't trust a 10 year with anything, but that's just me. Japanese culture regarding maturity and age differs from the western world, and since I am no expert in Japanese culture, nor do I wish to embarrass myself by doing something stupid with it, I'm making the characters as local-unspecific as possible. I agree, fan made usually pokemon do suck.


Oh, of course. I understand the allure of it--I like working better with older characters myself--but it doesn't compute, logicall, with the writing aspect.

PDL is right. Again, nothing wrong with having trainers start later, but it is wrong to make it impossible for them to start earlier.

It's not wrong, it's different.


Well, the human canon of Pokemon is rather small. Of course the canon of Pokemon being kept in little balls and fighting should be kept. However, because little is made of the human side of Pokemon, you should see it as a Blank check. For one thing, you don't have to stay in the regions made in the games and anime. You can make your neighborhood and the surrounding area the setting if you want and would make the culture and backgrounds different and so you would have to make your own canon on that. As long as you stick to it faithfully and make it consistant and believable, you will work out.

Making up my own region was exhausting for an RPG, I wouldn't dare try it for a fic. Some people can pull it off, I unfortunately, cannot.

Right, this is the preview for the fic I posted back in November. Perhaps it will give you an insight into my reasoning for my choices.

http://www.serebiiforums.com/showthread.php?t=92475

Act
30th January 2006, 2:57 AM
Why can't someone write a story that operates under the same basic premise, whereas the league decided 10 years old was far to young and decided to raise the age to 16?

Unfortunately, not all fics are that well thought out o.o;; Still though, that's pretty drastic. The drinking age was upped logically-- let's not give teens the right to drink around the time that most are getting their driver's liscense. Somehow 'I think ten-year-olds are too immature' is a naive reason that doesn't really work, IMO. Yet, anything can be done and well if it's well thought out and not just an act of contrary-ness.


I happen to associate with ten-year-olds, and they are fully capable people. That's what gets me the most-- what makes someone that age incapable? Can someone answer that? No one seems to be trying to.

And it is just opinion, do remeber. Let's not bite heads off. To each their own.

Literate
30th January 2006, 3:21 AM
My opinion on the age of when to become pokemon trainers is actually based on the pokemon.

The pokemon starts out small... then change and things like that. Trainers do that too. They go from small to...big. And stuff like that.

I guess my reason for saying this is because if a person starts a journey with a very small starter.... it would just look weird if someone really big was trying to comprehend basics as well. Okay, simple version: Big does not go well with small, especially if they are learning the same ropes.

Jash Thor
30th January 2006, 5:02 AM
I happen to associate with ten-year-olds, and they are fully capable people. That's what gets me the most-- what makes someone that age incapable? Can someone answer that? No one seems to be trying to.

I also happen to associate with 10-year-olds (my brother is that age and he constantly has friends over), and I can assure you that they can't handle it, haha. Yes, to each their own, and to me 10-year-old trainer is just absurdly young.

I also must admit that I partly defend this standpoint because I'm planning a fanfic of my own that would be written under these guidelines. It just makes more sense to me to allow them to mature psychologically and physically before embarking on such a responsibility-laden journey.

Negrek
30th January 2006, 5:17 AM
Listen, I'm not saying that you can't go with an older age (for the oh-so-manyeth time), but that it must be properly explained. The old "they raised the age because it's suddenly become vastly more dangerous to train" is one that comes up quite frequently. It can be done, but it's precious rare that I've ever seen it done with any flair. Personally, I think that a lot of problems that people have with the whole "ten is too young" thing is simply cultural bias. In our culture, we don't expect ten-year-olds to be mature and strong enough to venture out on their own. In other cultures, ten-year-olds were old enough to go out on hunts with their tribe and whatnot. Age is something looked at very differently in other worlds; I don't think we should be imposing our own belief systems in a world so markedly different. Even a hundred years ago, ten-year-olds were viewed in a very different way. Now, whether or not that aligns with the way that you view the situation in your story is up to you. But I'd not dismiss it as reckless and stupid and totally illogical that ten-year-olds journey.

I don't get the whole "it's all right to ignore canon for this because it makes no sense, either." Personally, I don't see the sense in keeping highly intelligent creatures in little red-and-white balls, either, but it's not something that I ignore.

Canon is there to give limits to your writing. If you ignore them, then what's the point of writing fanfiction? If you keep the pokemon but lose all the other flavor and culture, why not just replace the pokemon with similar creatures of your choice and have at it with some original fiction?

Canon can be bended, yes (see AU fiction.) But taking some of the canon and then ignoring other parts of it entirely doesn't cut it with me. You can break rules stylistically, as with using punctuation. That would be acknowledging canon but breaking it to create effect. Knowing canon but ignoring it would be like knowing how to use commas but, putting them,, everywhere because, why stick to all, those, stupid rules anyway? Nobody, cares!

So all that I'm asking is that you think it over. "Trainer starting at a different age (usually at three years older or younger)" is the bane of many a trainer-fic, and requires an immense amount of planning to pull off properly.

Dilasc
30th January 2006, 7:42 AM
When making your region, you must think carefully. Personally, though I can safely say that while my story is filled with flaws and is as unread as you could expect a trainer story to be, there are plenty of differences. Compared to many of the points brought up, my region is not even NEAR any of the others. Kertonmel is at the South Eastern Border of Mongolia and borders China. As such, it is culturally different than the Japanese regions we see all the time.

I must admit, it is fun to learn about Mongol, and Viking cultures in order to help me write my works better, and its also fun to write about horse archers and furious bezerkerers pillaging Brittain and Europe, as well as their several century away descendants in a Pokemon universe. Yea, I know it sounds very awkward, but if you find your niche in a fanmade region, you too will grow attached, and would wish that others would grow attached as well. That's part of the frustration of writing OT stories is not getting people to feel an affinity to your work or your characters.

Fan made Pokemon are not taboo. It's just bad if they're not very well thought out. Personally, I think very carefully over each and every creation I make, and in turn, I treat fan made Pokemon with no greater emphasis, or favoritism than those that exist already. Granted, I will give basic info afterwards, including typing, ability, and all that useless info, but that's because it won't be found anywhere else. If your region is far far away from those we know of, I'd bet my scrotum that there'd be Pokemon you do not know of. Heck, I state sometimes if a certain Pokemon is native to the land or if it is a foreign specie.


A majority of fan-made Pokemon could just as easily be replaced by an existing Pokemon.

That so? I don't see how I can substitute any of the current species for oh say... a fudge brownie, or an ear of corn with one eye, a fire ant, a one eyed ear of corn, or even the evil, malicious Oni. Only through fanmade Pokemon have I been able to create such unique beasts. Truly, if a simpleton like mineself can create something with a shred of uniquity, then better and worse writers alike can create some clever, awe inspiring species as well. Besides, in fanmade regions, would you honestly expect your regional guardian to be Ho-oh, Mew, or Kyogre? No! Every region, if unique, likely has their own legendaries that make them as great as they are. Basically, a themepack, a little guy with 100's across the board, and something or two that'd fill the 00ber metagame. Especially if it's not even in Japan like the other regions.

I'm amazed how some writers think the world so tiny that the regions we know are the only ones in existence. Mind you, this isn't directed at anyone in particular, but to think the Pokemon world so small is just silly. I'm sure the 4 regions we have, being the chunks of Japanese locations that they were, would make for a very tiny planet. Sure, it's not a common theme in trainer fics, but in some fics about legendaries, they are the only ones, and are cliche guardians.

Now, I ask all you friends... well maybe not, but authors, I guess would work. Anyway, I ask you, fellow writers, what is stopping you from making potentially unique and interesting Pokemon in a region that is completely new and unique, that is bound to lack certain Pokemon from other regions.

Eh, I think I'm going off subject here, but fanmade Pokemon are an important part of the fics that feature them, are they not? Regardless, back on topic.

An original trainer story is actually a high risk, low reward dilemma. You are writing something that few people will like, and even more people will spit in your face about spitefully. I know this all too well.

It is important to make your characters unique. If they live happy lives and win every battle, you tend to throw a violent rage and hate it from the getgo. However, if your characters struggle and loose from time to time, then that's good, but not all there is to it.

They must have emotions and personality. Because this is an OT fic, you must overcome unoriginality and write your characters with such unique and deep personalities that would make you think that you yourself have no personality.

Anyway, the way I see things, the topic is getting kinda silly. Lets think for a minute here about asking questions, or better yet, lets avoid asking. Simply put, there is one simply one word question that can destroy everything that one builds up and makes you feel inadequate. That question is 'Why?' The more you ask yourself or another author 'why', the more difficult it becomes to answer, and if you ask it a few hundred times, you'll probably be somewhere way off topic of the story all together and might be somewhere on the topic of asking something as random as asking why Moses didn't discover the telegraph. Some things just need to be accepted ways of life to the fact that if you try and answer them, you're asking for something that isn't broken to be fixed, but at the same time, you're breaking something else and making new plotholes. Intriguing to think about the next time anyone is ready to ask why.

In OT stories, 'Why?' is a common question to hear asked. Basically because every story deviates from what is 'set in stone' and brings new creative life to the way a Trainer story can be written. It is important to think for yourself and come up with reasonable conclusions based on the information a fic isn't giving you. Perhaps, only if a story is so bad should you ask 'why?' All in all, be careful when you ask, or you will overwhelm someone with new plot holes that will only be patched up to make new ones appear elsewhere.

Whew! That was a long post, as usual. Hope I didn't contradict myself too much there. I kinda forgot what I even typed after a while.

The Big Al
30th January 2006, 2:06 PM
Well, trainers are kind of trapped in the middle. If you stick to the canon, people claim it's unoriginal. If you think for yourself, people say you're going against the canon. Really, the life of a trainer fic is not a happy one. Despite it being easy to think it's the easiest kind fic, because of the critics out there, it's so hard please.

And yes, the current selection of Pokemon is actually very limited compared to the kinds of animals, plants, and objects out there.

Negrek
30th January 2006, 10:34 PM
I don't find canon unoriginal at all. Saying that canon made your story unoriginal would be like saying "OMG bulbasaur evolved into ivysaur. That's sooo unoriginal. Why can't we see bulbasaur evolving into something else now and then?"

Elemental Charizam
30th January 2006, 10:45 PM
Well, laws DO change from country to country, Negrek. And canon supports the existence of America, and says that one pokémon at least - Mew - lives there. It makes sense things would be different.

IMO though, cannon is something you shoot balls out of. You can always get around it easily anyway, if you want to.

The Big Al
30th January 2006, 10:49 PM
I don't find canon unoriginal at all. Saying that canon made your story unoriginal would be like saying "OMG bulbasaur evolved into ivysaur. That's sooo unoriginal. Why can't we see bulbasaur evolving into something else now and then?"
Is there something wrong with your eyes? I think I said that the canon about the Pokemon should be kept mostly untouched (unless you plan on making new pokemon but they still fit into the pokemon universe).

What I'm talking about is the world of Pokemon. What the games, manga, anime, ect. show is a very small part of a big world. So it's very reasonable for a person to create their own region (or as in the games) base the setting off real world areas.

Example: My fic is set in Southeast Michigan (might exapand into Southwestern Ontario and Northwest Ohio) and so the culture of the area kind of makes a different canon like there being no Pokemon Centers and trainers need access to cars to get anywhere.

Seiryu
31st January 2006, 3:54 AM
It is important to make your characters unique. If they live happy lives and win every battle, you tend to throw a violent rage and hate it from the getgo. However, if your characters struggle and loose from time to time, then that's good, but not all there is to it.

They must have emotions and personality. Because this is an OT fic, you must overcome unoriginality and write your characters with such unique and deep personalities that would make you think that you yourself have no personality.

If I may add to this...

Please, for everyone's sake, for OT fics, remember that just like how not every character should be oh so happy and successful at everything, nor should everyone have, say, a deceased parent, an abusive past, or something that causes them to angst every five minutes. (which makes me sound like somewhat of a hypocrite as all three main protagonists in one of my fics have some horrible event in their past, but I'd say they're less about the angst and more about the vengeance aspect, but that's beside the point. >..>; )

Mix it up if you will, but remember that it's perfectly fine to have a character lead a normal life up to (and including) their journey and have a perfectly normal personality. Don't go "Oh, this character is too generic, let's give him or her some random quirk to make him/her completely different from everyone else!" You wouldn't believe how few OT fics actually have normal main characters (probably because for many people, "normal" translates to "boring"). Do as you see fit, but I for one would like to see more "normal," everyday trainers as main characters.

You see, I enjoy my characters with a touch of realism. To me, the character archetype "Oh, I'm such a sad person/there's no way I can be successful at anything/I'm such a loser/I hate everyone around me" --basically, the one where the main character is some overly angsty SOB--is rather old, boring, and annoying. Realistically, I can see very few people actually acting like that all (or even most) of the time without one hell of a good reason. Nor do I like the kind of character who does everything perfectly--that is, a Mary-Sue-type of character.

Of course, there's also that possibility that some people choose the angsty character type because, in their own opinions, it offers an easy-to-create personality, one that they don't have to put much thought into. Yes, I also find that the middle-of-the-road, normal characters are much harder to do when it comes to making personalities that aren't totally bland, but trust me: it can be done, and I'm sure that you know it too.

In fact, more than anything, I'd say it's not a bad idea to have only a little bit of personality at first, and let it develop (realistically) as the events in the story unfold.

But I'm rambling, and I'll stop now. I hope that my thoughts were of some help this time!

Negrek
31st January 2006, 4:54 AM
Is there something wrong with your eyes? I think I said that the canon about the Pokemon should be kept mostly untouched (unless you plan on making new pokemon but they still fit into the pokemon universe).
Is there something wrong with yours? I think I said that to me it seems absurd to follow strictly one area of canon (the pokemon aspect) but ignore others entirely (the "world" aspects.)

Again, canon is something fairly easy to work around... as Elemental Charizam said, it's fairly easy to work around. But to work around it, you first have to work out how to work around it, if you take my meaning.

Edit: Oh, and word to everything Seiryu just said.

Saffire Persian
31st January 2006, 6:09 AM
How to make an Original Trainer fic original... that indeed is a good question. Of course, I can't say I have all the answers to it, because I haven't exactly delved deeply into that area of fanfiction.

First off, unlike some people, I think, you can do 'over done' topics if you do it well, and perhaps have an original twist along the way. There's nothing wrong with having your character going to the lab and having him or her choose a Pokémon from there -- as that is probably where most Trainers would get their first Pokémon anyway, granted, there's absolutely nothing wrong from deviating, but I think Trainers get their Pokémon from the lab for a reason: Lab Pokémon are bred to be an easy, well-rounded choice for Trainers who are just starting out. For the most part, they're probably a bit more prone to listen to orders, being around humans their whole lives, and even by the game standards, are far easier to raise and gain experience. Pokémon just newly found or 'caught' might not necessarily be that way.

Not that you can't have your character get a starting Pokémon some other way. But it's really not that bad to go the normal way. Really, it isn't. It's the stereotypical personalities that usually accompany it that makes labs get the bad rap, I think.

Ex: Trainer wakes up late, rushes down stairs, says good-bye to only parent, rushes out the door to meet rival...

Usually, those characters are a bit generic, and make the 'gary-stu' 'mary-sue' sign go off in one's head.

I also agree with a few of the posters here about the Canon aspect. It's there for a reason -- unless you're breaking it off into an A.U. or starting a whole new region with a different culture, it's probably better to stick to Canon. Again, as I've seen the replies here, I'm not saying all Trainers have to start at ten years of age - it's just that's the norm. (You tend to learn faster and better while young, they say.) Your character might not start off at ten - maybe way later. Perhaps for personal reasons i.e: just doesn't want to go, parents won't allow them..etc.

Fan-made creations certainly aren't bad when planned out and used well. Realistically, there's probably hundreds of Pokémon the people of the pokémon world don't know about, just like we're discovering new species everyday. (Granted, mainly bugs.. but meh.)

Also keep in mind your characters are human - they have their ups, their downs.. and not every trainer has depression as their main ailment. (You think if they were depressed, they'd really, really want to go on journeys? In my experience, depressed people usually sit around and mope. I dunno if they'd actually be motivated enough to travel around with their life as 'angst ridden' as it is.) But if you feel like making a darker character, don't let me stop you, but just make it realistic, and try not to make the character so dark it seems unfathomable. There are also ways to have a darker sort of character than the the stereotypical ways of: mother/father passed away, an orphan, he/she raped, he/she is attacked by Rockets and vow revenge... X.x

And yeah - I think Seiryu has said most of what needs to be said very well about the personality topic.. Nothing else needs to be added. I'm probably repeating myself as it is.

Keleri
31st January 2006, 6:33 AM
Changing the journey-ing age is a sensitive topic around here, I see. *smirks* For me at least, the age of my protagonists has increased as I've aged; as I went to school and saw all the people interact around me, in the back of my mind I've always gone, "No, no--10/11/12/13/14/15.../21 is too young for these people to be in control of monsters with staggering elemental power." In this society at least, young people are ridiculously immature. No, don't ruffle your feathers at me--we all are, unless you snatch time to surf the 'net and play pokémon in between taking care of your many brothers and sisters and holding down a job. I look at the people around me at university and they're too immature. I'm too immature, I strongly suspect.

And that, if you will, is exactly why kids need to go out journeying at ten. They learn leadership/teamwork skills, how to manage their money, plan ahead, and how not to die in the forest. I think that they'd learn how to be a little more responsible--which will prepare them for whatever field they decide to go into after the pokémon training thing gets boring.

But, okay. You want to have your protagonists a little older. That's fine, I've done that. But, there are, in fact, three ways to do it. The first is to just have them start later. This, of course, means they're 1-7 years behind their contemporaries and liable to get pwned by an 11-year-old with a runny nose, but that's okay. They've been 'studying'. They can plan a perfect strategy using only tackle and growl. Beat that, eh!

Another way would be to change the minimum age, either by changing the rules or creating your own region where this is the case. This is generally not looked favorably upon because the reason is generally the helicopter-parent-style "OMG TEH CHILLUNS!"

I'd just like to make a note before I go on, that you are PERFECTLY ALLOWED to use the above two methods, despite my jaded Pit-troller attitude toward them. No one will come to your house and make you listen to Hilary Duff on endless repeat, although they may want to if you do it badly. So, like RazorLeaf has indicated as is the case in his story, HAVE A LEGITIMATE REASON, kthx. To review, "I was studying" and "OMG TEH CHILLUNS", respectively, are not really very legitimate any more.

And the final way that no one seems to ever employ is... write about an established trainer. It's not as scary as it sounds, honest. They don't have to have had some hard-core four-to-eight years of experience; maybe they've only been training during the summer, while still keeping up with their schooling. They don't have to do it all in one go. Really. And it might be nice to have a change from all these OT 'fics that get as far as the first gym before the author loses interest.

And, BTW, it's okay to write about normal people. One of my favorite protagonists, Richard Mayhew from Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman, was incredibly normal. I like him because he reacted to bizarre things in a delightfully human way. Blade Stryker and Raven Icewind may seem really cool to you, with his telekinetic power and l33t ninja skills and her flowing tresses and ability to speak with all pokémon, but chances are, neither of them are really very interesting. A character who is too special is just as bad as a paper cutout. Make someone who is real. It's a challenge, but it's worth it.

(Still working on the last one, myself.)

Ash_Junior
31st January 2006, 9:47 AM
Unfortunately, not all fics are that well thought out o.o;; Still though, that's pretty drastic. The drinking age was upped logically-- let's not give teens the right to drink around the time that most are getting their driver's liscense. Somehow 'I think ten-year-olds are too immature' is a naive reason that doesn't really work, IMO. Yet, anything can be done and well if it's well thought out and not just an act of contrary-ness.


I happen to associate with ten-year-olds, and they are fully capable people. That's what gets me the most-- what makes someone that age incapable? Can someone answer that? No one seems to be trying to.

And it is just opinion, do remeber. Let's not bite heads off. To each their own.

*has memories of being a counselor at a 8-12 camp*

er....

no.

the majority of ten-year olds are NOT mature enough to be on their own.

One in a billion may be able to, maybe, but most, most assuredly, would NOT be able to...

in the US, anyway.

I know, I know....but I'm NOT making any comments on any other country's youth.

just the US.l

I haven't seen a SINGLE kid in the US that I'd trust with a creature as strong as a Pokemon.

Not one.

not even myself.

and on the topic of fan-made Pokemon/Regions....

I've gotten a bit indignant. If you took my Pokes/REgions out of my fics, you wouldn't have anything at all. I admit that some of the fan-made Pokes/regions may not be good (I believe a term I heard...or I made up is "Kanto clone")...but don't lump ALL of 'em in and say "fan-made stuff is BAD!" I've gotten nothing but good reviews for my fics, and almost all have some aspect of one of my created countries/pokes.

at last count, I've got about 95 or so Pokes (that includes 3-4 types that I made up that I haven't seen anyone else make up...Titan, Wind, Lunar, Solar), and 7+ countries that all have unique "personalities" (lessee....Neragosh [Engara's little brother...Alto's rival], Tintia [xenophobic, technologically advanced], Alto [bird island with cities named after different types of clouds], Engara [Tintia's rival....technologically advanced, excellent spy net], Sintaur [home of the horse Pokemon lords], Nuschantz [wintry tourist trap], Effeular [centuries-long civil war between Pokes/humans], the desert one who's name I'm blanking on....).

All of them are woven together, and I have backgrounds for each Poke/type/country.

Not ALL created stuff is bad.

and would you people (not anyone in this thread....just in general) PLEASE stop calling them "Fake" Pokemon???

it gets REALLY annoying.

BirthdayPirate
31st January 2006, 4:47 PM
Originality is an illusion. All ideas you might have have been thought of before, without question. All twists you might come up with have been done, without question. All of your character's most interesting qualities have been used before, without question. The question is; can you do it better?

Yes, I'm in a philosophical mood. :)

Dilasc
31st January 2006, 9:14 PM
perfectly normal personality.

Care to define a perfectly normal personality? The way I see it, such a personality can vary from culture to culture. What if in one region, angst and misery is a normal way of life. Egads! Everyone there is NORMAL.

Let me say it like this. A normal person is basically a matter of personal opinion. As such, being normal is neither good nor bad, it simply is, dare I say it, biased. That's right, your definition of normal may differ from mine, and may differ your neighbor, and also from something eight million lightyears away on another lifebearing planet. Such is the definition of normal... it is a word I hate, because it is something I am not, but that's beside the point. The point is, normal can have a varying definition based upon where you are from.

Anyway, onwards to talk about 'age.' Again, as my previous post tried to tell you all quite bluntly, STOP THINKING TOO MUCH! It's only a (hopefully creative) story. Really, just ignore age all together. I've always hated the idea of age mattering for anything as far back as the fact that eighteen is a legal age for women to... erm, I mean, ever since eighteen was the legal age for people to vote. Yea, that's the ticket!

Age is simply a number most of the time, and yet we make a bigger deal about a difference between being ten and thirteen, than someone would about being twenty-eight or forty-five. That's a three year difference versus a seventeen year difference! Sure there's all that maturing hoa-hah that happens in those three years, but its still only three years, but in example two, nobody would give a second glance to any difference between twenty-eight and forty-five. Hopefully, this makes you all want to think more carefully and less hypocritically about age.

RaZoR LeAf
31st January 2006, 10:22 PM
I've posted the first chapter of Omega now (sig), so if anyone would care to read it and comment on some of the things that have been discussed here I'd appriciate it.

Act
31st January 2006, 10:34 PM
I know, I know....but I'm NOT making any comments on any other country's youth.

just the US.l

Of course you are. The youth of Kanto, Johto, and Houenn. When kids are raised to be more mature and not live off their parents, IMO they'll be able to.

Also, there's a HUGE difference between 8 and 10, and between 10 and 12, which brings me to my next point...


Age is simply a number most of the time, and yet we make a bigger deal about a difference between being ten and thirteen, than someone would about being twenty-eight or forty-five. That's a three year difference versus a seventeen year difference! Sure there's all that maturing hoa-hah that happens in those three years, but its still only three years, but in example two, nobody would give a second glance to any difference between twenty-eight and forty-five. Hopefully, this makes you all want to think more carefully and less hypocritically about age.

Hypocritically? Definition check much?

Anyway, I think you're taking age a little literally here-- we don't really give a crud about the number at this point. Everyone can correct me if I'm wrong, but aren't we debating about something more along the lines of "When in life are you mature enough to do this?" It's not really "When have you had enough birthdays?"

And now that I think about it, if ten really is such an awfully young age, why has no one written a fic about a ten-year-old not being able to handle it? Prove it to me that way ;) Much more interesting than people trying to attack each other. You want to do something different? Make it possible. That's my point. "Just 'cause I assume things should be this way and feel like I should be OMGoriginal" isn't the greatest reason ever.

:shrug:

The Big Al
31st January 2006, 11:37 PM
Well, there is also other factors that might determine the age people begin training Pokemon. If there are no Pokemon centers in every town for travelers (like it would likely be in America) trainers would also need to be able to drive or be able to depend on someone who can drive. So it's more likely trainers will start at 15 or 16 so by the time they want to explore beyond biking distance they can drive.

Act
1st February 2006, 12:27 AM
Well, there is also other factors that might determine the age people begin training Pokemon. If there are no Pokemon centers in every town for travelers (like it would likely be in America) trainers would also need to be able to drive or be able to depend on someone who can drive. So it's more likely trainers will start at 15 or 16 so by the time they want to explore beyond biking distance they can drive.

:nod: It also depends on the setting. If you're going for a real-world pokemon thing, it'd probably be a tad different. But as far as a canonical journey goes, you'd probably want to go with what seems to be working in the isolated little pokemon world. There, the don't really seem to have many roads, and a car isn't too practical for spotting and sneaking up on pokemon.

The Big Al
1st February 2006, 12:29 AM
:nod: It also depends on the setting. If you're going for a real-world pokemon thing, it'd probably be a tad different. But as far as a canonical journey goes, you'd probably want to go with what seems to be working in the isolated little pokemon world. There, the don't really seem to have many roads, and a car isn't too practical for spotting and sneaking up on pokemon.
The car only gets there. Yo have go into the woods and search for the Pokemon on foot because you can go foot where you can't with a car and you can sneak up on them better. So a car can still be a tool for training.

Yamato-san
1st February 2006, 12:49 AM
"Just 'cause I assume things should be this way and feel like I should be OMGoriginal" isn't the greatest reason ever.

:shrug:

As I said before, people could also just prefer the aesthetics behind it, so those are far from the only reasons.

Seiryu
1st February 2006, 12:57 AM
Care to define a perfectly normal personality? The way I see it, such a personality can vary from culture to culture. What if in one region, angst and misery is a normal way of life. Egads! Everyone there is NORMAL.

Let me say it like this. A normal person is basically a matter of personal opinion. As such, being normal is neither good nor bad, it simply is, dare I say it, biased. That's right, your definition of normal may differ from mine, and may differ your neighbor, and also from something eight million lightyears away on another lifebearing planet. Such is the definition of normal... it is a word I hate, because it is something I am not, but that's beside the point. The point is, normal can have a varying definition based upon where you are from.

Jeez, who peed in your corn flakes? I wasn't trying to bash your ideas (if that's what you were thinking) but merely trying to expand on them while offering up my own. Seriously, man, it looks as if you really need to take a chill pill or ten. -..- Maybe that'd also help with the tone you took, too (which I feel was a bit condescending and, as such, slightly offensive). Speaking of which, I can't help but wonder why you called out my post alone and not Keleri's, but whatever.

Your point has been taken into account. I admit I was basing it a bit off what I see as "normal" (or, more accurately, "most normal" as I tend not to see very many things as "strange") but I also was basing it on what I feel a large amount of people see as "normal." I simply thought that what is "most normal" would be something most people here could agree on. I did not think that someone would take such obvious offense to the word.

So perhaps I shouldn't have used the word "normal." Upon rethinking it, I feel that, indeed, I meant someone who acts realistically--oh wait, that word's like "normal" in that one person might have a different definition of "realistic" from another. (which, if you think about it, is true for lots of words. It all depends on where someone comes from and where they go.) Perhaps I should word it like Keleri did--someone who acts "human" in the face of various situations, with or without some uber world-saving destiny, and without some special power that would make him a total outcast in the eyes of most human beings. And again, I prefer the "middle-of-the-road" types. Not too angsty, not too jovial, maybe with a few realistic and natural fluctuations.

My two cents.

Act
1st February 2006, 2:51 AM
As I said before, people could also just prefer the aesthetics behind it, so those are far from the only reasons.


Of course. But no one else seemed to offer up too many creative reasons. I do agree with your point. :nod: