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Thread: Fakemon

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    Question Fakemon

    (Hoping I don't cross any lines with this thread opening)

    Was just in the Original regions thread by DeadlyBraviary∞ (Hah! Got it!) and a major point of contention was on the topic of Fakemon, or fan-made Pokemon.

    For people like me, 649+ Pokemon just wasn't enough (251 when I started, but you see my point), and so began creating my own Pokemon ideas to supplement. For others, Fakemon is a major turn-off from a story, as it can be cumbersome to keep track of them all (eh, who am I kidding? It's a NIGHTMARE.)

    Basically, I'm opening up this thread to let people talk freely about their experiences, expectations and angst when it comes to creating Fakemon. Tips to share when using them can also be shared here. I'll try putting up a little "guide" myself soon (if there are no arguments) and others can do the same in helping people come to grips with making them, if they so wish.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Air Dragon View Post
    (Hoping I don't cross any lines with this thread opening)

    Was just in the Original regions thread by DeadlyBraviary∞ (Hah! Got it!) and a major point of contention was on the topic of Fakemon, or fan-made Pokemon.

    For people like me, 649+ Pokemon just wasn't enough (251 when I started, but you see my point), and so began creating my own Pokemon ideas to supplement. For others, Fakemon is a major turn-off from a story, as it can be cumbersome to keep track of them all (eh, who am I kidding? It's a NIGHTMARE.)

    Basically, I'm opening up this thread to let people talk freely about their experiences, expectations and angst when it comes to creating Fakemon. Tips to share when using them can also be shared here. I'll try putting up a little "guide" myself soon (if there are no arguments) and others can do the same in helping people come to grips with making them, if they so wish.

    Well, here we go! L@er!
    Fakemon is... difficult. The huge barrier preventing Fakemon to work is that in huge details, is the near impossibility to remember. Unlike real pokemon, there isn't a picture book or a "fake serebii.net" encyclopedia. IMHO If you overwhelm the reader via too many Fakemon, I think it is gonna take a hard time to keep track of them for the readers, and sometimes even the writer. Like what you said, remembering every fakemon, every detail, is a huge nightmare. The lack of picture, again, really hurts and it's hard to remember how it looks like since the only source is based on written description.

    I'm currently plotting a fic with only two fakemon. One a man-made pokemon, the other a nature serpent guardian something dragon pokemon. I think two is a good number, since I'm describing it a lot. hm~

    I also think that drawing a Fakemon beforehand would help, I guess. :3

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    The thing with Fakemon for me is that as much as they're described, there's no reference. When I was originally planning my fanfiction involving my own 400-strong FakeDex, I was beginning to draw them all in the fanart section, giving people a place to at least look to, should my description not be enough. I think having a visual reference is necessary when doing something with Fakemon.

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    I'm not currently planning any fanfiction, or at least not any that I'd be likely to post here, involving fakemon, but I do create a lot of fakemon just for fun and have a fakedex site for them—it really is effectively a "fakemon Bulbapedia" for my projects. I would theoretically have that to show people if I were to write about those fakes in a fanfic, and that way readers would have not only images but other useful information about them (sizes, flavor details, move lists, abilities, even stats which wouldn't make a direct appearance in most fanfics but can at least hint at where a pokémon's strengths tend to lie). That's not to mention it being a useful reference for me so that I could keep things consistent. At the same time, though, I wonder how helpful that would actually be. After all, there's a lot of stuff there, and it's a lot to ask a reader to even skim over on top of having them read your fanfiction. I couldn't realistically expect a reader to spend a ton of time familiarizing themselves with my fakes the way they're familiar with canon pokémon—it'd be like asking someone who just got into the Pokémon fandom to spend hours poring over Bulbapedia so that they'd know more about all of the Pokémon from Kanto before being fully able to understand the story.

    All that to say, I suppose, that it's probably not a bad idea to have more meta information than just images (if you're so inclined to create some, and not everyone is), but you shouldn't rely on it as a crutch and your readers shouldn't have to either. Images or more may end up being necessary in the end, especially if you do have a lot of fakemon involved in your fic, but you still have to do your best to get any and all relevant detail across in your writing itself. (Keyword there being "relevant", of course. As with anything else in fiction, extra flavor does help you get a better sense of the world, but if it's not crucial for the reader to know this little bit of pokédex minutiae about a certain species, do yourself and your readers a favor and don't try to shoehorn it into the story.)

    The other thing I think you'd need to remember is that you have to balance providing your reference material with keeping people engaged in the story. This applies to simple images as well, even if you're not going into a bunch of game-relevant detail about your creations. If you have to stop at any point in your chapter to drop in an image link or a link to a page with pokédex information, the reader has to break away from the story in order to check that out and give themselves a better mental image/better context. It might be better to wait until the end of a chapter to provide the images/information so that the reader can get through the content uninterrupted, but then that means that any readers who are more comfortable with visual references have to go through the meat of that chapter without said references. I guess that might mean the best place to provide the reference material is before the chapter proper starts, but even that might have some issues (I have had people tell me they've gotten lost in a sea of shiny links while reading through my fakedex and ended up spending waaaay more time checking it out than they'd intended... this is very flattering but I wouldn't want that to happen so early as to distract them from the actual chapter of my story!). As with any other extraneous information about a story, such as the links to "chapter songs" and the like that I've seen Jax mention, figuring out how to provide that information tastefully and without jarring your audience out of a good read is pretty important.

    No matter how many fakemon will ultimately be making an appearance in your story, I would suggest only introducing them a few at a time. Even if you're a perfectly capable author and will totally flesh out the fifteen fakemon you just dumped on the readers in glorious, believable detail, you did just dump fifteen fakemon on your readers. That's a lot for you to explain at once, a lot for readers to absorb at once, and potentially a lot of images/references for you to provide and for readers to investigate and remember. The less everyone has to worry about describing or absorbing at one time, the better off everyone will be—and the more time the first batch of fakes will have to make a memorable impression on your readers before you introduce a brand new set. I guess I'd also add that not every fakemon in your fanregion necessarily needs to appear in your fanfic. Some ideas may very well call for eventually introducing your readers to a whole 'dex full of the little buggers, but just as you rarely see a fanfic set in Sinnoh that has at least brief appearances from every single pokémon that can be found in Sinnoh, the people you have moving through your region are not necessarily going to encounter every single pokémon that can be found in that region. If you don't need all of your fakes to appear, it's helpful to consider the ones that don't actually add anything to your story with their appearances and dedicate that time to making the ones that are needed good, fleshed-out and memorable.

    Aaaand I'm not really sure how helpful all that rambly advice was to anyone, haha. This is a subject I enjoy, though, so I am totally up for talking about it some more!
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    The biggest issue people have with fakemon is, as stated, people have no reference. We know how Charizard, Ghastly, Blitzle, et all behave, and how they look, and their relative battle strengths. All of that has been established through the pre-existing canon, and it's easy for a reader to know that, if a fic has a Kingler and an Elgyem in it, they are going to act in a certain way. With fakemon, we have no idea what the constraints on them are. Even if the description is incredibly vivid, we can only gain a loose interpretation of the fakemon.

    The other big issue is that when one writes a fakemon fic, it tends to be full of fakemon, an entire region's worth. So while wrapping our heads around, say, three or four fakemon is doable, a hundred or more is a very, very daunting task.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feralninja View Post
    The biggest issue people have with fakemon is, as stated, people have no reference. We know how Charizard, Ghastly, Blitzle, et all behave, and how they look, and their relative battle strengths. All of that has been established through the pre-existing canon, and it's easy for a reader to know that, if a fic has a Kingler and an Elgyem in it, they are going to act in a certain way. With fakemon, we have no idea what the constraints on them are. Even if the description is incredibly vivid, we can only gain a loose interpretation of the fakemon.
    At the risk of bringing up an old argument, I'm always puzzled by why people think this is a bad thing. I mean, the same thing can be said about original characters, yet no one seems to have an issue with those. :/ Sure, you could argue that it's a different story because we're talking about people, but if you told me that a fakemon looks like a rabbit but with different characteristics, that'd be the same thing as saying a character is a human but with different clothes, hair color, tattoos, and so forth. It's part of our job as readers to meet a writer halfway, after all, so we shouldn't really gripe that we don't have a form of reference. We're supposed to be imagining what creature is in the story based on the descriptions the author gives us. If those descriptions are very carefully written, we should have no reason to complain that we can't tell what the thing is supposed to look like.

    I mean, writers of fantasy and sci-fi original fic face this issue all the time, yet no one really gripes about those, either. It's really just in this fandom where I've encountered people who keep saying, "I have an issue with this concept because I don't want to rely on written description in order to get a mental image of what you're talking about." For that reason, I personally believe that unless you're presenting a lot of fakemon for some reason, images shouldn't be entirely necessary. I mean, it's like giving the reader an image of a dragon or an original character. You want them to have some wiggle room when it comes to imagining what's going on, and if you're just handling one or two Pokémon, your story should be able to get the important stuff across without an image. Sure, if you have more than that, by all means, try your hand at tackling images, but less than that? The reader probably should be able to get what you're describing by themselves. Or at least I've never had any complaints about the fact that there's never been official images or stat data for the ixodida, for example. So, yeah, you can tell a story with a fakemon without actually drawing it or even describing every last detail of what they are within the fic.

    Meanwhile, I do have to agree that if you're going to do fakemon, you shouldn't introduce craploads at a time. Granted, I also believe that if you do a fan-created region, you should also have a lot of fakemon. How does this work out? Pretty simply. Don't introduce a fakemon if it's not going to be relevant to your story, but it's definitely a good idea to think about all the details of your region (even if you don't get around to presenting them to the reader). Put them down in notes. Maybe draw up a 'dex yourself. Either way, let yourself have a wide array of tools to work with, but only use a few tools at a time.

    Buuuut that last part is just reiterating what Phoenix said. She even has an example of how to maintain information about one's own fan region even if not all of that info is presented in a fanfic. That's how well-prepared she is.

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    If I describe a human somewhat sparsely and leave out details like their exact height and hair length then you, the reader, may make assumptions. If I say 'she was somewhat short for your age' one may assume she was just shy of five feet, another person may put her a few inches above that... a four inch difference may not sound like much, but that's two very different internal visions.


    The big thing that bothers me is that people assume that others cannot be bothered to look at referential material. To those I say this: you underestimate the human ability to obsess and be curious.

    If you post an idea, there WILL be curious people who want more information. Even little things (which may not BE little things in your story) such as breeding Groups or ability options, even hidden ones, capture curiosity and by all means could play out to important story plots or may rear its beuatiful head in a battle.

    For instance, in my region, there's a new weather type called Acid Raid, and an old Pokemon we know and (hopefully) love called Bellsprout has full access to the ability to summon it. I originally had plans to work it slyly into the story where a Weepinbel shows up setting Acid Rain, only for it to be a ruse for the opponent to hoist his own petard with sunlight.


    Breeding groups help since you never know when two travelling companions may 'bond' and a hatchable surprise awaits. Magcargo and Koffing? Breedable partners, though the only breedable moves of any value that goes between them is Smokescreen from Koffing to Slugma.

    The ideas that Phoenixsong brings up are ones I do too. I have far too many Excel Spreadsheets with regional Pokedexes, including a total TM list (which totals 157 of them,) new moves, and of course many Fakedexes for all the regions. I seperate them into 3 per region: stat spreads/breeding groups, a basic rundown with abilities/hidden and tutorable, and a total dex, where classics are added.


    I can almost guaruntee someone out there will be like "I wanna see them!" to which I'd respond that they're boring spreadsheets. Heck, I almost want to see other folk's dexes.

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    Another thing that might be helpful (though maybe I'm stating the obvious) to make a story with fakemon acceptable to the average reader is to remember to write your original Pokemon as a character.

    It's not just "oooh, neat! I'll make an Eeveelution that's a Ghost-type" or "hey, a moose with iron antlers sounds like a good idea." You can describe such creatures all you want, but you still wind up with just a pretty (or not pretty, depending on what you make) description. If you want readers to like your original creations, give the individuals of those species your character comes across distinct personalities. Make people care about the new generic-regional-rodent on your trainer's team by making the one in question interesting (the same way you might make an existing regional rodent like Rattata interesting if you write its personality well).
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    I can almost guaruntee someone out there will be like "I wanna see them!"
    I wanna see them.

    to which I'd respond that they're boring spreadsheets.
    Maybe, but I STILL wanna see them. Granted, I won't exactly created breeding groups per se or excessive stats for them as I create them. But if one is getting an evolution or (in the rarer case) an existing Pokemon gets a (pre-)evo, they have to need it. Plus it can't be godly (as in invincible) It has to have its flaws. Example: from the latest TCQ, I brought in a rare occurrence of a Fakemon built upon an earlier existing one: Ambipom. It was bigger, and slightly faster. It also had more limbs and could use web-like attacks. So I put in an attack and defense deficit to balance it out.

    Heck, I almost want to see other folk's dexes.
    Almost? I might be able to accommodate there... :P

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dilasc
    The big thing that bothers me is that people assume that others cannot be bothered to look at referential material. To those I say this: you underestimate the human ability to obsess and be curious.

    If you post an idea, there WILL be curious people who want more information. Even little things (which may not BE little things in your story) such as breeding Groups or ability options, even hidden ones, capture curiosity and by all means could play out to important story plots or may rear its beuatiful head in a battle.
    There are definitely people who will look at reference material, but others won't, and just because some people would look at reference material if it were there doesn't mean you are obligated to have it. If you have extra material, by all means tell your readers about it so they can check it out if they want, but you still can't use it as a crutch, and if somebody else doesn't have reference material for their fake Pokémon, that's fine too.

    If the author wants to write something where abilities are relevant, they should know the abilities of the fake Pokémon, and likewise they should know breeding groups in the rare cases where they write something where breeding groups are relevant, but that's not an argument for introducing readers to all that before any of it becomes relevant just in case it does become so. And if it does become relevant, it should show up in the fic itself, not just the reference materials.

    Anyway, I basically agree with everything Phoenixsong said, particularly the bit about not introducing your Pokémon fifteen at a time. Relatively few Pokémon that each get a lot of focus are generally fairly easy to remember and keep track of; hundreds of Pokémon most of which only appear for a scene or two will probably confuse the hell out of the reader.

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    Previously in the "Original Regions" thread, the question was spread into two parts: Original Fan-made region and Fakemon.

    Most writers seems to be fine with original region, but not Fakemon. Yes, because that was completely two different issues.

    When JX Valentine brought out that Original Region MUST HAVE Fakemon, the discussion got heated up soon.

    Original region doesn't need to occupied by Fakemon only, and oppositely Fakemon doesn't need to exist only in original region. Original region and Fakemon are two different things that were not in the same package, and they are not meant to be associated with each other.
    If by JX's argument, then all the Pokemon Ranger's regions and Pokemon Conquest's Ranse region should had occupied by Fakemon, but the official ones.

    May be I should post this in the "Original Regions" thread, but what I wanted to tackle was not about the region, but more on the Fakemon side.

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    Creating a Fakemon is not merely about its physical appearance, but one would also need their types, abilities, status (doesn't need to be as statistically detailed as in game, but at least which state it excel in), attacks, characteristics, natural habitats, or possibly even their diets. Just one sentence: Too much detail, that may be even far beyond your need for the story.
    I found that when one had dig him/herself into creating so many Fakemon that can make up a Pokedex of one generation, he/she will gradually lose interest in creating a fic out of it.

    I guess it is not about fic-reader accept Fakemon or not, but rather, does writers wanted to include Fakemon or not into their story.

    Someone said 649 Pokemon was already more than enough, so they won't tend to create new Fakemon for their story. In anyway, one will always able to find a suitable Pokemon to use in certain plot situation without creating a new one.
    But then someone will say that is not enough at all, so they going to make new ones for their own story. But I also wanted to say, creating an original Pokemon is not always the best solution for the story plot. Fakemon is also not deus ex machina for plot planning.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crystal View Post
    May be I should post this in the "Original Regions" thread, but what I wanted to tackle was not about the region, but more on the Fakemon side.
    ...Then why did you bring it up? :/ As far as I can tell, this topic can stand on its own without having to revive the debate from months ago; the only reason why the other thread was mentioned wasn't to detail the argument back in July but instead because that's where the thread is right now in terms of topic.

    Besides, my point was a counter to your point, which was that fakemon should never be used ever because fan authors are not employees of Game Freak. I said it would make sense to use fakemon and that there's really nothing preventing you from doing so. You can create fakemon without being a member of Game Freak, and it doesn't take professional-level creativity or a team or designers to do so. That was my entire point, which got continuously missed: that people judge fakemon or the fans who create them rather harshly, typically while giving them a chance. The only reason why the topic got heated at all was because of that exact reason: people were judging fakemon creators without giving them a chance.

    Not to mention that discussion was in July, so... thanks for digging up old arguments and taking them out of context.

    Personally, though, I stand by my earlier statement (and my response to the fakemon vs. everything else debate): there's nothing wrong with creating fakemon.
    Last edited by JX Valentine; 2nd November 2012 at 2:29 AM.

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    @ JX:

    I personally don't hate fakemon, I also have some that I like, such as the fan-made Eeveelutions, the combined form of White Kyurem+Black Kyurem, and certain fan-made pre-evolved and evolved form of some unevolving Pokemon. But, even I like them, I'm not intended to include them into my current fic, and there is no point to do so.

    The point is not about is it wrong or right of creating fakemon, but I wanted to discuss on the issue of why fakemon is not popular in fan-fiction section. Yes, writer can make whatever fakemon they wanted, but still I don't see lot of fanfic using fakemon, ESPECIALLY a fic where there consist purely fakemon only, not a single canon ones.

    I understand that creating a fakemon is so easy, even a 3-years-old children can do it. (BTW, just a small digression. Every single year, Bandai hold a Digimon Design Contest, every single person may enter their work of creation, as long as the sketch is somewhat understandable. Most prize-winners are teenagers and less-than-teen children) But, most of those fakemon designers had never thought of any tellable story when they create that character.

    Don't you understand that creating a fakemon and creating a story to tell is two different things? A fakemon (more generally, any kind of original characters) can be designed individually without the need of any story plot, or even without the need of intensive detailed descriptions. But on the opposite, when one create a story, one must know the details of the characters he/she tending to included in the story. Such detail is not only physical appearance, but characteristics, strength and weakness, background story, etc. Moreover, in case of a fakemon, then obviously its combative statues and natural abilities are inavoidable, unless your story has no battle at all.
    Therefore, the work load of creating a fakemon for a story is much higher than creating a fakemon just for fun. For the latter case, you are not subjected to details, but for the former one, you definitely need it. So it just makes you need to design the fakemon like a professional, even though you are not a professional.


    And one last thing. After several months of "cooling" from the previous discussion of the other thread, I already had a change in viewpoint. So don't try to dispute over my past post. Those are already my word in the past, not now.
    Last edited by Crystal; 3rd November 2012 at 1:23 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crystal View Post
    And one last thing. After several months of "cooling" from the previous discussion of the other thread, I already had a change in viewpoint. So don't try to dispute over my past post. Those are already my word in the past, not now.
    You do know that the only one who's trying to debate anything from that argument is you, right? :/ I mean, you were the one who brought that back up, and you are the one who seems rather insistent on talking about that argument. I mean, if you really don't want to continue debating past points, then you'd want to avoid bringing it up, right? I'm perfectly willing to go on my merry way tonight without talking about what we were saying in July, and I'm sure that Air Dragon and the others would prefer to avoid watching their topic get derailed when a lot of people have a lot of interesting things to say. So it's really just for everyone's best interests to forget about the July thing and move on. Only way you can do that is if we -- including you, Crystal -- all agree to avoid talking about it.

    That being said, I know you don't like me, Crystal, but if you have any beef with me, I'd rather discuss it via VMs if you're so inclined. Otherwise, let's not derail the thread with past shenanigans, shall we?

    So with that all said and done...

    Don't you understand that creating a fakemon and creating a story to tell is two different things?
    Well, that sounds just a wee bit patronizing.

    But ignoring the tone, eeeeehhhh, in a way. Kind of, sort of in a way. Sure, when you create a fakemon for the sake of creating a fakemon, you tend to add a lot of detail to it, but there's nothing really stopping you from bringing it to life in a story except your own skill level. That's why I've always said it's a lot like creating an original character: because at its core, you're using a lot of the same skills. You have to be careful in how you describe the character or fakemon, and you have to be very selective in what details you share and creative in how you present those details. Do you have a lot more responsibility in creating a fakemon than someone who's writing a trainer fic involving just canonmon? Yes. Do you have to have professional-level skills in order to write fakemon into a fic? No. There's plenty of people -- on this site, even -- who can write fakemon fic without much of a problem. Dragonfree's a good example, but if you want to go for someone who isn't net-famous partially for fakemon fic, you could go with Air Dragon.

    Sure, you don't see that many people write fakemon, but it's not always because of how easy or difficult it is. It has a lot more to do with the fact that not that many people are interested in doing so. There's various reasons why. Some people don't feel creative enough (in their own opinion of themselves) to pull off fakemon in a story, but others prefer working with canon Pokémon, either because they don't see a reason to do anything else (what with there being 649 canon ones to use) or because they just like writing about their favorite Pokémon. Some even avoid writing fakemon because they mistakenly think that there'd be a stigma attached to doing so, which was part of my point in the first place (saying there's nothing wrong with fakemon in order to encourage people who might fall into this group to go ahead and write what they want to write).

    So my main point is that it might be slightly harder to write fakemon into a fic, but it's certainly not over-the-top difficult, either. Even how much detail you need tends to depend completely on the story. The first battles I wrote with the Ixodida, for example, were done when I didn't even know what the Ixodida could do besides "they can use claw-based attacks and whatever element-based attacks their bodies look like they can do, they can't die unless their parasite core is destroyed, and Bill can take a beating because he's a Steel-type." To this day, I still don't know what the Ixodida's base stats or full movepool are. I also don't know things like what special ability they have (unless I decide down the line to give them a fan-created one after all) or what effects their non-game-mechanics abilities could have on a battle. (Example? Still can't decide what level of hive-mindedness they possess. Because I'm hilariously indecisive most days.) Same thing could be said with creating an original character for any other writer. You could plan out every single detail about them before writing, or you could just figure out a very loose and short profile and save the rest for later. It really depends on how you write. Some people can't write a character without doing a thorough profile on them, and others prefer making things up as they go along. (Plotters and pantsers, in other words.)

    Or in other words, I guess what I'm trying to say is it depends on the person, so we should encourage writers to give them a shot if they're so inclined. Of course, not everyone is, so not everyone does. And there's a considerable chunk of people who don't, not because they don't want to face the challenge of adding them to a fic but instead because they just plain prefer working with canon 'mon.

    And of course, not much of this is really trying to argue with you. I agree that it is more difficult than just writing a trainer fic (or any other fic, for that matter) with canon 'mon. In fact, I also agree that you need to know a good chunk of details about your species before tackling the subject. (I couldn't write the Ixodida without knowing that laundry list of details, after all.) I just think that whereas any three-year-old (as you say) can create a fakemon, then maybe it's more like any nine-year-old can write one. (I'm still proud of that fakemon I tried to write in one of my first fics way back when. I miss that thing.)
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    If I might interject for a moment (I'll try to avoid stuff from July too, but I do want to make a few points here), I think you may be over-complicating the issue. The main point I want to make here is that the work that goes into a fakemon fic may not seem like a chore to a person who already likes making fakemon anyway.
    Quote Originally Posted by Crystal View Post
    Creating a Fakemon is not merely about its physical appearance, but one would also need their types, abilities, status (doesn't need to be as statistically detailed as in game, but at least which state it excel in), attacks, characteristics, natural habitats, or possibly even their diets. Just one sentence: Too much detail, that may be even far beyond your need for the story.
    "Too much" work for a story depends on the individual. One person might not want to go through the effort of making a new creature for a fic (original or otherwise) and instead use creatures already in existence for it - such as using a dragon in a fantasy story or a Finneon in a fanfic. This is perfectly fine if that's what they want to write, but there is still work involved. You may have to do some research or at least make up some rules to stay consistent (how does your dragon breathe fire without burning its mouth, for example) or look up the existing information about the creature you're working with (re-reading 'Dex entries and making sure you know what moves a Finneon would and would not have access to).

    On the other hand, some people actually find creating their own creatures and figuring out how they work to be a fun experience. It doesn't feel like "too much" to them because they lose track of time while trying to figure out how a rock-dog creature might hunt or what about a certain environment might lead to an Eevee taking on more draconic characteristics. They don't see applying form to function or function to form as a chore, but as a game. It's no different from figuring out how a fake region's economy might work or how a made-up culture developed its practices, it's just a creature instead of a human/civilization-based focus.
    I found that when one had dig him/herself into creating so many Fakemon that can make up a Pokedex of one generation, he/she will gradually lose interest in creating a fic out of it.
    Why? creating a creature and creating a story are indeed different things, as you say, but they are by no means mutually exclusive. You can do both if you are so inclined. I wrote a fakemon story when I was eleven or twelve, and I'll admit I never finished it. But the reason I never finished it had nothing to do with the fakemon. I planned the plot out through the league and into what would be the "post-game" if it was a videogame and started writing a story after I figured all that out. I had about as many 'mons as Gen 1 had, and a plot. What stopped me from finishing the story wasn't the fakemon, it was the fact that I realized my human characters weren't working out (my main character basically did nothing while the side-characters in whatever town she found herself in took down the evil Team and I realized I needed to write a more active character if my story was ever going to be any good - I think I basically just took the whole "silent protagonist" thing too far). If I can ever figure out how to dig out from the eleven or twelve year old me's plotholes and characterization problems, I still think I could turn that story, fakemon and all, into something decent.
    But I also wanted to say, creating an original Pokemon is not always the best solution for the story plot. Fakemon is also not deus ex machina for plot planning.
    I don't think anyone is suggesting a fakemon be used as such. If you're just making a fakemon because it's the only thing that can get you out of a tight spot in a story, that's not a good thing. But most fakemon creators don't make their original creatures to do that. I would imagine most writers who use fakemon make the story to suit the creatures rather than make the creature to dig their way out of a stuck plot. To make a good fakemon, a writer needs to keep its strengths and weaknesses consistent so it doesn't become overpowered.
    Quote Originally Posted by Crystal View Post
    Therefore, the work load of creating a fakemon for a story is much higher than creating a fakemon just for fun. For the latter case, you are not subjected to details, but for the former one, you definitely need it. So it just makes you need to design the fakemon like a professional, even though you are not a professional.
    I mentioned that story and fakemon are not mutually exclusive things above, but I'll continue here. People who write fan-fiction do so for fun. People who make fakemon do so for fun. And, yes, people who make fakemon for stories do so for fun. How many details one puts in depends on what is needed or how much they want to add. If you're the type who already gives the pokemon you create stats and movesets with level details and everything, then creating a fic around that is no harder than creating a fic around a Bulbasaur or Sentret because the person already created the details for fun. Alternatively, they may not have to know exact stats if the story doesn't call for it. Just knowing what is going to have more offense or defense oriented abilities may be enough in many cases. I don't need to know that a Pikachu's speed stat is 90 in order to write Pikachu as a small creature that has a lot of speed-based abilities since I can gather that from its appearance or its portrayal in the anime. Likewise a fakemon creator just has to know how their creature typically behaves and what they can and can't do in order to keep them consistent in battle. If they want to stat it, fine.

    Just because it takes more effort to make an original species and write a story than it does to do one or the other doesn't mean it actually feels like more work if the writer/fakemon maker happens to enjoy doing both.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JX Valentine View Post
    So my main point is that it might be slightly harder to write fakemon into a fic, but it's certainly not over-the-top difficult, either. Even how much detail you need tends to depend completely on the story. The first battles I wrote with the Ixodida, for example, were done when I didn't even know what the Ixodida could do besides "they can use claw-based attacks and whatever element-based attacks their bodies look like they can do, they can't die unless their parasite core is destroyed, and Bill can take a beating because he's a Steel-type." To this day, I still don't know what the Ixodida's base stats or full movepool are. I also don't know things like what special ability they have (unless I decide down the line to give them a fan-created one after all) or what effects their non-game-mechanics abilities could have on a battle. (Example? Still can't decide what level of hive-mindedness they possess. Because I'm hilariously indecisive most days.) Same thing could be said with creating an original character for any other writer. You could plan out every single detail about them before writing, or you could just figure out a very loose and short profile and save the rest for later. It really depends on how you write. Some people can't write a character without doing a thorough profile on them, and others prefer making things up as they go along. (Plotters and pantsers, in other words.)
    Quote Originally Posted by JX Valentine View Post
    And of course, not much of this is really trying to argue with you. I agree that it is more difficult than just writing a trainer fic (or any other fic, for that matter) with canon 'mon. In fact, I also agree that you need to know a good chunk of details about your species before tackling the subject. (I couldn't write the Ixodida without knowing that laundry list of details, after all.) I just think that whereas any three-year-old (as you say) can create a fakemon, then maybe it's more like any nine-year-old can write one. (I'm still proud of that fakemon I tried to write in one of my first fics way back when. I miss that thing.)
    You know that your argument is contradicting yourself? That's the point about creating fakemon for story writing. Yes, you don't need to have an exact clear illustration of the fakemon, but still that list of detail is inavoidable if you wanted to include the fakemon into your story. And if you don't have these information planned out first (doesn't need to be very particularly detailed, as long as you have a general picture for yourself), using fakemon in writing will just be difficult.
    (Well, the difficulty depends on the writer's personal opinion. But generally speaking, still it is more difficult)


    Quote Originally Posted by Ememew View Post
    The main point I want to make here is that the work that goes into a fakemon fic may not seem like a chore to a person who already likes making fakemon anyway.
    "Too much" work for a story depends on the individual. One person might not want to go through the effort of making a new creature for a fic (original or otherwise) and instead use creatures already in existence for it - such as using a dragon in a fantasy story or a Finneon in a fanfic. This is perfectly fine if that's what they want to write, but there is still work involved. You may have to do some research or at least make up some rules to stay consistent (how does your dragon breathe fire without burning its mouth, for example) or look up the existing information about the creature you're working with (re-reading 'Dex entries and making sure you know what moves a Finneon would and would not have access to).

    On the other hand, some people actually find creating their own creatures and figuring out how they work to be a fun experience. It doesn't feel like "too much" to them because they lose track of time while trying to figure out how a rock-dog creature might hunt or what about a certain environment might lead to an Eevee taking on more draconic characteristics. They don't see applying form to function or function to form as a chore, but as a game. It's no different from figuring out how a fake region's economy might work or how a made-up culture developed its practices, it's just a creature instead of a human/civilization-based focus.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ememew View Post
    I mentioned that story and fakemon are not mutually exclusive things above, but I'll continue here. People who write fan-fiction do so for fun. People who make fakemon do so for fun. And, yes, people who make fakemon for stories do so for fun. How many details one puts in depends on what is needed or how much they want to add. If you're the type who already gives the pokemon you create stats and movesets with level details and everything, then creating a fic around that is no harder than creating a fic around a Bulbasaur or Sentret because the person already created the details for fun. Alternatively, they may not have to know exact stats if the story doesn't call for it. Just knowing what is going to have more offense or defense oriented abilities may be enough in many cases. I don't need to know that a Pikachu's speed stat is 90 in order to write Pikachu as a small creature that has a lot of speed-based abilities since I can gather that from its appearance or its portrayal in the anime. Likewise a fakemon creator just has to know how their creature typically behaves and what they can and can't do in order to keep them consistent in battle. If they want to stat it, fine.

    Just because it takes more effort to make an original species and write a story than it does to do one or the other doesn't mean it actually feels like more work if the writer/fakemon maker happens to enjoy doing both.
    I don't want to argue about the subjective feeling from the writer's own view of what is meant by "too much work". But really, creating a fakemon out of blankness will increase the amount of working, that is for sure, whether you enjoy that creation work or not.

    Fic writing and fakemon creating are not mutually exclusive, that I understand. But the point is not about their exclusiveness, but the acceptability on each other. This "acceptability" include many factors, the obvious one is the fanfic story plot itself, other characters in the story, etc. and one very important one: the writer's treatment and decision about the fakemon in the fic.
    I don't want to argue over your fakemon fic that is not finished, because that is just one of the case study approach. I'm talking more on the general case.
    The acceptability of fanfic writing and fakemon creation can be either high or low, all depends on the writer, and obviously the fakemon fic that the writer wanted to write. But unfortunately, up until now, I haven't read or even found a noticeably good fic that involves fakemon.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crystal View Post
    You know that your argument is contradicting yourself?
    Not really. As I've said, I agree that the task of creating fakemon is slightly more difficult than simply using canonmon. It's just that it's not an over-the-top (extremely) difficult or daunting task, as you've been implying. I'm not quite sure where you're seeing the contradiction, if you don't mind me saying so. Do you mind being a bit more specific there, especially considering the fact that I never said it wasn't difficult at all? I'd like to know where I wasn't entirely clear so I can explain it in a better way that makes sense.

    Of course, that aside, I also said it depends on the writer. Having a physical or lengthy mental list is avoidable in that some writers don't need a lot of detail to work. You just need a very loose set of the basics and the absolute necessities for your story. (Hence my example with what I did to write the Ixodida. That wasn't a long list of details at all, and I didn't find it difficult to come up with them or to include them in my fic.) It's even possible to come up with those details on the fly and still make your species and story work; it depends, really, on if you're a plotter (someone who plans everything before they write) or a planner (someone who works best if they don't really plan at all). On the other hand, if you're not a writer who enjoys coming up with, say, original characters or something along those lines or if you're a serious plotter, maybe you would find it to be tiring or daunting. The point is that not everyone feels that way, and most certainly not everyone who uses fakemon feels that way.

    And that's really all that Em was trying to say too. If we're going to talk about the creation of fakemon from the standpoint of the author, we're also going to want to be careful in remembering that not all writers are the same. "Slightly difficult" implies that the task is a challenge; "very difficult" implies that the task is undesirable to approach. That's especially if you're describing the task as work. For a lot of authors who enjoy writing fakemon, it's really comparable to doing anything else when it comes to fanfiction: coming up with plots that differ from canon material or every other fanfic, creating original characters, coming up with settings, and so forth. It may just be one more task, but fic writers generally don't list how many tasks they have to do in order to create a workable story. That and fakemon authors who enjoy creating and portraying fakemon in their fics don't really perceive the process of doing so as work because, like Em said, it's really a lot of fun for them. A puzzle, more like.

    I guess the simplified version is we'll want to be careful with connotations here -- or, in other words, we'll want to choose our words carefully. It may be a little unfair to call creating fakemon difficult or work because that implies that there's no way they can be fun for people who might enjoy them but have never tried. They're a challenge and a little something extra for a fic, really. Slightly difficult, in other words, not overly difficult.

    If we're talking about acceptability, then, we'd have to tackle that issue from the perspective of a reader because some of the reason why writers choose not to use fakemon is the stigma attached to it, which is born from what they think the reader's opinions on fakemon are. 'Course, there's other reasons (including "why would I use fakemon when I have 649 canonmon at my disposal"), but when it comes to the negativity surrounding fakemon, I really do think a lot of it has to do with the readers' perceptions of fakemon in fic.

    But unfortunately, up until now, I haven't read or even found a noticeably good fic that involves fakemon.
    You'll want to dig a little deeper. There's at least three good examples on this forum alone (that aren't mine *shot!*). Dragonfree's Quest of the Legends, for example. All of elyvorg's longer work for another. They're definitely worth your time and wonderfully written. I can't recommend them enough.
    Last edited by JX Valentine; 5th November 2012 at 5:50 PM.

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  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by JX Valentine
    Dragonfree's Quest of the Legends, for example. All of elyvorg's longer work for another. They're definitely worth your time and wonderfully written.
    I have to disagree on that first one. :P Especially seeing as most of the fakemon are silly legendaries made because my twelve-year-old self lived by the principle that there can never be enough dragons and unicorns in anything, ever. It is definitely not an example of stellar use of fakemon.

    (But yes, all the elyvorg yes.)

    Crystal, I'm having a bit of a hard time making out what your stance actually is. I get that you think fake Pokémon are a lot of work, and that apparently you haven't read any good fakemon fic, and that you believe fakemon fics are less accepted, but I can't tell what you're ultimately trying to say. Are you just cautioning authors who are thinking about including fakemon that it's a lot of work to pull off well and that some readers will be put off by it, or actually saying fakemon make for bad fanfics and people shouldn't use them?

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    Fakemon are not easy to use. However, there are a few things that I've learned about them that can make them work in certain fanfics.

    1 - This is important. No matter what you do, no matter where the 'Fakemon' came from, do not ever, EVER make it Legendary, if the protagonist is going to get it. If you're going to use it as a Legendary, make sure it's not something that the main character catches. This is a big turnoff, and honestly one of the most predictable and cliche plot points in alot of fanfics. Making this mistake can very easily turn an otherwise good character into a Mary Sue/Gary Stu.

    2 - If you're going to use Fakemon, don't use too many of them. You can use three or four, maybe five (though that could be pushing it, if they're all used frequently), but I would not recommend making an entire 'Generation' out of them. This is what I call the Fakemon Confusion Trap. You've got a fanfic that introduces over 100 new Fakemon, and now the reader is struggling to keep up with what each of them looks like, and what each of them can do. It becomes a problem, and can make a reader lose interest very fast. So the solution is to avoid it by limiting the number of Fakemon in the Fic. Focus on the few that you really want to focus on, and don't use any others.

    3 - Make sure you DESCRIBE the Fakemon, to the point where the reader could draw a picture of it the way you imagine it to look. Ok, that's a bit of an exaggeration. But the point here is, very few Fakemon get enough description to make them stick in the reader's minds. If you're creating a fan Pokemon, then evidently you personally know what you want it to look like. So describing it in detail, including how it looks when it attacks and does other things, should be one of the first things you think of before even using it in a story.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SBaby View Post
    Fakemon are not easy to use. However, there are a few things that I've learned about them that can make them work in certain fanfics.

    1 - This is important. No matter what you do, no matter where the 'Fakemon' came from, do not ever, EVER make it Legendary, if the protagonist is going to get it. If you're going to use it as a Legendary, make sure it's not something that the main character catches. This is a big turnoff, and honestly one of the most predictable and cliche plot points in alot of fanfics. Making this mistake can very easily turn an otherwise good character into a Mary Sue/Gary Stu.

    2 - If you're going to use Fakemon, don't use too many of them. You can use three or four, maybe five (though that could be pushing it, if they're all used frequently), but I would not recommend making an entire 'Generation' out of them. This is what I call the Fakemon Confusion Trap. You've got a fanfic that introduces over 100 new Fakemon, and now the reader is struggling to keep up with what each of them looks like, and what each of them can do. It becomes a problem, and can make a reader lose interest very fast. So the solution is to avoid it by limiting the number of Fakemon in the Fic. Focus on the few that you really want to focus on, and don't use any others.

    3 - Make sure you DESCRIBE the Fakemon, to the point where the reader could draw a picture of it the way you imagine it to look. Ok, that's a bit of an exaggeration. But the point here is, very few Fakemon get enough description to make them stick in the reader's minds. If you're creating a fan Pokemon, then evidently you personally know what you want it to look like. So describing it in detail, including how it looks when it attacks and does other things, should be one of the first things you think of before even using it in a story.
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    Let me set the bar straight here:


    1. Legendaries in a region are inevitable. Are you going to tell me when it comes to uber tier we should have no new creatures in my regional roster? Will any story characters catch them? No, but these legs caries make for good movie spinoff stories.


    2. Ever consider providing extra information? Reference sheets? Even small interludes that introduce the hell out of a creature in case the author doesn't want to backtrack and search specific chapters? As I've vehemently proclaimed, people will eat it like flies eat poop. Does that mean overload a viewer all at once? No, but the more you give the more it shows you care and thus you r readers will care. Besides which a major issue arises if there isn't a new region. Namely where did five new species come from all of a sudden and why on yr ewe five. If gen six had less than twenty new pokemon, would you like it? Don't disrespect the fan in favor of the creator, that's bias.

    3. Not sure how to answer this one. It sounds objective and a tad insulting to make such a bold claim in front of many talented authors but what do I know?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dilasc View Post
    1. Legendaries in a region are inevitable. Are you going to tell me when it comes to uber tier we should have no new creatures in my regional roster? Will any story characters catch them? No, but these legs caries make for good movie spinoff stories.
    Legendary Pokemon are fine in a fanfic, as long as the Trainer doesn't catch all of them them. That's the point I was trying to drive home. I don't mind when Fakemon are Legendary; I use them. But I normally don't just let the Trainer catch them.

    If you absolutely MUST have a Trainer catch a Legendary Pokemon, there should at least be a really good reason for it. I will admit, it's not as cut and dry as it looks re-reading what I've posted, but I've seen many authors fall into the trap where the Trainer suddenly has a bunch of Legendaries, even though by realistic logic it should be impossible to do that, and there's nothing that can challenge him or her. That's when the character becomes a Mary-Sue or a Gary-Stu.

    Not to mention according to some canons, catching Legendary Pokemon outright can have really bad effects on the environment. This is one of the reasons I made that rant about the Battle Frontier in the Anime.


    Quote Originally Posted by Dilasc View Post
    2. Besides which a major issue arises if there isn't a new region. Namely where did five new species come from all of a sudden and why on yr ewe five.
    I'll address this point, too. As the Anime has shown us, you don't necessarily need to go to an entirely new Region to introduce a new Pokemon. A character could encounter it deep in a forest, where nobody ventures. Or maybe an evil Team brought it from an undisclosed part of the world. The point is, there's ways to introduce them without journeying to a whole new Region (and yes I have to admit, that also includes Legendary Pokemon).

    I'm not saying that you're a bad author if you make a new Region with a new 'Generation' for your Fic. I'm just saying that not many people can do it well. And therefore if you're inexperienced, you should avoid it (at least for the time being).

    Quote Originally Posted by Dilasc View Post
    3. Not sure how to answer this one. It sounds objective and a tad insulting to make such a bold claim in front of many talented authors but what do I know?
    In all fairness, this last one is mainly for newer authors. I wasn't necessarily aiming this one (or really any of my post) at the veterans. But it's true. Alot of people don't put in enough description for their fan Pokemon. I see it all the time. And I'm sure the mods of the forum do too.


    Honestly, I'm not sure why you got mad about this. It wasn't even being directed at you. I posted this to answer the topic in general.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SBaby View Post

    Honestly, I'm not sure why you got mad about this. It wasn't even being directed at you. I posted this to answer the topic in general.
    Because people can't have this discussion without fighting. It's impossible.


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    At the risk of seeming belligerent, perhaps instead of coming to the conclusion that it's "impossible" to have a civil discussion on this topic in all cases, we might consider hurricane-induced stress as a factor in making someone more on-edge than usual about what was said over then Internet, where it is difficult to detect the intended tone of a post?

    Anyway, at the three points brought up above . . .

    1) This basically just seems to be saying that you should treat original legendaries the same way you would work with a canon legendary: be careful in actually giving it to a character unless there is a very, very good reason to do so because, well, you wouldn't give a Kyogre or Mewtwo to a character without a very, very good reason to do so because it wouldn't seem very realistic. Should you make a fakemon rare, treat it as rare and make it harder for a character to catch it. Just apply the same rules to a fakemon the correspond to how you would treat an existing Pokemon of the same power level, rarity, and importance. The original phrasing may have been a poor choice (the inclusion of the word never, and ordering "not making a legendary" at all before bringing in the fact that this applies to "if a character will catch it" may have lead to misinterpretation), but the general idea is to simply apply the same "rules" to fakemon as canonmon.

    2) In this point I disagree with the original assessment to an extent. The idea is not to overwhelm the reader with all of your new creatures at once, but this doesn't mean you have to pick a specific low number to restrict yourself to. Introduce your fakemon only as needed (not every one you've come up with needs to appear) to avoid overwhelming a reader, but if you can handle numbers greater than 4 or 5 at a time without being overly confusing, then feel free to do so.

    Imagine if Gen 6 came out tomorrow and some fast writers starting using Pokemon from it within the week. They'd be canon Pokemon, but most readers would not have had time to become used to them. In that case, it would make sense to take extra care in their use, but it wouldn't be "bad" to use them at all simply because they're canon Pokemon, which seems to magically make them fair game no matter how new they are. A person new to the Pokemon franchise as a whole may begin reading a story with absolutely no experience with the Keckleon or Luxio the author includes, but the author is not wrong for including them in a fic a person new to the franchise reads. My point, then, is to question why it would be "wrong" to include multiple fakemon if they're all described well enough or if additional information is provided, when using a canon-mon someone is not familiar with is also quite possible?

    Just as long as one introduces their new information only when relevant to avoid overloading the reader, then I see no problem with including more than five original creatures in an overall story. A one-shot might want to restrict things to very, very few, but a longer story has time to introduce multiple new creatures at a reasonable pace.

    At the third point, the original poster already mentioned that it was directed at newer authors rather than at experienced ones, so that's already been cleared up as far as I can tell.
    Last edited by Ememew; 6th November 2012 at 10:44 PM.
    Oh, look! I wrote a fanfic! Weak (One-Shot. Rated G). Can Iris convince Bianca that she can't just avoid her problems?

    And another one: Mischief (One-Shot. Rated G). A little fun for October.

  24. #24
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    May 2012
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    isn't there ALREADY a Fakemon thread?

  25. #25

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    Yes double storm devastation has me on edge. Still I can offer advice.


    Starters are a delicate thing. Design them carefully.

    Avoid a secondary typing that interacts with normal until stage 2 or 3 for a simple reason. You may have a lvl 5 tackle/pound/scratch and +/-1 atk/def modifier fight on your hands and if you're up against a grass/steel type you're gonna have a bad time.

    Therefore avoid steel, ghost, rock and normal type secondaries. The normal secondary avoidance is because STAB tackle will win that much faster.

    Another thing to think carefully is a secondary type for stage 1 that resists the enemy grass water or fire attacks. A water/bug may sound fun, but it really trumps the grass starter as odd as it is to evolve into a bug type.

    Starters have the STAB pinch abilities appropriate for thier type. Personally I do give my bug starters, (I have 2 out of a cuurent 18) secondary option in swarm but that still counts. Of course fun abilities are hidden ones so make it count or fun/useful.
    Last edited by Dilasc; 10th November 2012 at 3:52 AM.

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