Episode 97: Thinking Inside the Box

NOTICE: I originally made a large mistake in the episode, and claimed Brenda’s next contest would be at Cosm City, instead of Starnight City. If you were one of the people who read this early draft of the episode, I apologize for the confusion. A corrected version has been published.

Read episode 96 here.

Ash and Brenda have reached an impasse. Ash wants to go to Penum City for his next gym battle, but Brenda wants to go to Starnight City for her next contest. The problem is, they’re in the opposite direction. Solving this problem is going to take some out of the box thinking.

Also, the Pokédex page has been updated accordingly.

Only 3 more episodes until the 100th Episode Special!

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Episode 96 Review

I can certainly say it always feels good to come back to writing after such a long break, and I do apologize that it had to be the episode before the gym battle where I stopped.

I’ve explained before that each Tenno gym battle is supposed to show off a different positive trait of Ash’s. This gym battle was all about the improvised and unorthodox strategies that Ash is known for. Whether it’s Heala causing Yang-Xing to slip, Turtsol purposefully taking hits to absorb energy, Pikachu sacrificing itself to deliver one massive attack, or Heala blocking Lock-On, Ash always seems to have something up his sleeves. One interesting problem this theme caused my writing was that most of these strategies involve Ash’s Pokémon delivering a finishing blow without first being knocked out. So, if I wanted each of Ash’s Pokémon to get at least one of these creative moments, I would have to have Ash have a perfect victory against Astrid and lose no Pokémon. Clearly that would not make for a good battle, as there would be no tension, drama, or excitement. Not to mention, it would also make Astrid look somewhat incompetent as a gym leader. I kept that closely in mind as I wrote the battle, and was very careful to show off Astrid’s strength at every chance I could. Having Cyclpotic single-handedly turn the battle around helped with that issue too.

Episode 96: The Lightweight Division

Cosmic Quest is back with Episode 96! Read it here!

Ash and Astrid have their gym battle under a starry night sky. Can Ash prove he’s a real star? Or will he fail to shine?

Also, the Pokédex and Tenno League pages have been updated accordingly. Check out the Tenno League page for sprites of Astrid and the Celestial badge.

And don’t forget, we’re now only four episodes away from the 100th episode special!

Cosmic Quest’s 4th Anniversary and “Concept Art”

Cosmic Quest may have began four years ago today, but it can trace its roots to much earlier. Often in the past I’ve discussed how Cosmic Quest can trace its beginnings back to my childhood, when I would create my own Pokémon and regions for fun. Most of the Pokémon I created back then have been scrapped due to not being up to par with my current standards, but every once in a while, I use a Pokémon in Cosmic Quest that dates back to these days. Recently, I found a drawing I made as a child of several of my very first Pokémon. Coincidentally, every Pokémon on this picture has made it into Cosmic Quest and my modern Tenno Dex. So, on Cosmic Quest’s 4th anniversary, I present to you this exclusive look at “concept art” of various Tenno Pokémon, in all it’s original, childish glory.

Please Note: The following image was created when I was a young child, and does not represent my current abilities, particularly my spelling.

Pokemon Concept Art

I drew this image a long time ago when I was sitting bored in my family’s restaurant. I created most of the Pokémon right there, on the spot, meaning that this was the point when I first came up with several of my current Pokémon. This was also the first time that I created completely original Pokémon. Previously, as I have explained before, I had already created the Pokémon “Megachu,” which also appears here, but this was the first time I created Pokémon that didn’t evolve from existing Pokémon. Alongside each Pokémon, I wrote its name, type, and several moves the Pokémon could learn. Let’s take a closer look at each Pokémon.

WispiritProto-Wispirit

Wispirit began life as Flarecar, the Fireball Pokémon. Originally, it was only a Fire-Type, not a Fire/Ghost-Type. The Pokémon was simply a living fireball, and had not yet invoked the Will-O-the-Wisp aspect. This would also be evident by the fact that it was originally colored a more traditional red, orange, and yellow, instead of blue-white. Wispirit’s Shiny coloration is a reference to this original design. The scribbles around the Pokémon’s body are there because I originally gave the Pokémon arms and legs, but later decided against it. So, like any child drawing with a pen, I scribbled them out. The moves listed for this Pokémon where Flamethrower, Fire Spin, Blast Burn, and Flame Wheel. Of immediate note is the move Blast Burn. At the time, I knew Blast Burn was the most powerful Fire-Type move, but I had no idea that only Fire-Type Starter Pokémon could learn it. Of minor note is that Wispirit does not learn Flamethrower through level-up and does not Fire Spin at all.

Beneath Flarecar is its evolution, Flamcar, or what is currently known as Infearno. This is the only Pokémon on the drawing that has yet to be revealed. So enjoy your sneak peak of this Pokémon. Just keep in mind, this Pokémon will likely change in some major way when it is actually released.

TraineedProto-Traineed

The Pokémon you know as Traineed was created as Seedona. What’s striking about this Pokémon is how little changed about it. A sprout was added to the top of its head, but otherwise, Seedona is just a child’s attempt at drawing Traineed. Its listed moves were Solar Beam, Low Kick, and Vine Whip. It is impossible for Traineed to learn any of these moves, but it does learn Low Sweep, instead of Low Kick.

ArborriorProto-Arborrior

Just as Traineed evolves into Arborrior, Seedona would evolve into Treeona. Also like Seedona, Treeona was changed little when Arborrior was modernized. Ignoring the limitations of a child’s drawings, the only real changes were the removal of the nose, lowering of the eyes from the leaves to the trunk, and the removal of the seeds hanging with the leaves. Yes, those little ovals are supposed to be seeds hanging from Treeona’s branches. In the original concept of Treeona, those hanging seeds were undeveloped Seedona, which would fall from the branches when matured enough to live on their own. Before developed, they could be picked from Treeona and eaten (I know, seems a little messed up, but I was kid who didn’t know any better). These features are represented in the abilities I made for Treeona, listed simply as Hatch and Eat. At the time, I had never played a Pokémon game before, and had no idea how abilities worked. Eat was simple enough, as it allowed Treeona to eat its own seeds and heals itself, while Hatch was much stranger. Hatch would allow a Seedona to fall from Treeona, and actually join the battle as its own Pokémon. Clearly this would not work in an actual game. While Arborrior’s seeds may no longer be present, a remnant of them still remains in its moveset. Arborrior can learn Leech Seed, Bullet Seed, Worry Seed, and Seed Bomb through level up, all as references to the era where it had these seeds physically present. Speaking of moves, Treeona’s listed moves were Focus Punch, Mega Punch, Frenzy Plant, and Solar Beam. Of these moves, the only one Arborrior can learn is Solar Beam, and that’s only via TM. Frenzy Plant once again shows my ignorance towards how certain moves work.

Mega RaichuProto-Mega Raichu

In a link up above, I already explained the history of Megachu, and how it became Mega Raichu. I do suggest you give it a read. This was actually the second drawing of Megachu I created. Unfortunately, I no longer possess the original version. As Megachu was the first Pokémon I created, it went through many changes as time went on. For example Mega Raichu’s twin tails were inspired by a later version of Megachu, while this version does not have them. The listed moves of Megachu where Thunder, Volt Tackle, Thunderbolt, and Iron Tail. As you might notice, this was simply moves that Ash’s Pikachu knew. Even though Megachu was originally designed to be an evolution of Pikachu, this image lists it as evolving from Raichu, meaning this picture was drawn after I learnt of Raichu’s existence.

DelphinProto-Delphin

Delphin was originally known as Dolphinda. This one was rather simple. There wasn’t a dolphin-based Pokémon yet, so I decided to make one. Of course, as a kid, that means simply drawing a crudely designed dolphin, distorting its name, and calling it a Pokémon. Being just a Pokémon version of a dolphin, it was a pure Water-Type, and had no traces of it’s hyper-intelligent traits present as Delphin. It’s listed moves were Water Gun, Hydro Pump, Hydro Blast, and Bite. Hydro Blast was either a move I made up, or my younger self’s attempt at remembering the name of Hydro Cannon. I honestly don’t remember. Given the fact that I gave Flamcar Blast Burn, and Treeona Frenzy Plant, the latter seems likely. Delphin does learn Water Gun, but does not learn Hydro Pump or Bite. And why would a dolphin Pokémon learn bite? Don’t ask me, I have no idea what I was thinking.

IvineProto-Ivine

Last on the list is the prototype of Ivine, Ivyna. The striking thing about this one is that pretty much nothing changed about it at all. Looking at the before and after image above, the two are practically the same, right down to the pose they stand in. I’ve explained before that I first created Ivine in a time before Tangrowth existed, so Tangela was just awkwardly sitting there without an evolution, practically begging to be given one. That’s how Ivyna was created. Ivyna was listed as learning the moves Vine Whip, Razor Leaf, Poison Sting, and Leech Seed. Of these moves, Ivine only learns Vine Whip.

And that’s it! I hope you all enjoyed this look into the history of Cosmic Quest. Happy anniversary, Cosmic Quest!

Episode 94: The Ghost Wisp-erer

It’s been a bit of a wait, but episode 94 can be read here.

When Ash, Brock, and Brenda are forced to take a detour on a haunted path, Brenda is terrified at the prospect of meeting a ghost. Things only get creepier when a man claiming to be able to talk to ghosts appears to guide them.

Also, the Pokédex, Attackdex, and Character Guide pages have all been updated accordingly.

And apologies for the wait, but I’m back in busy season with school. Hopefully I’ll be able to get a few more episodes out before summer break starts next month, and I get even busier.

Episode 93 Review

This is actually an episode concept that I’ve had for a very long time, and by that, I mean almost since I first started writing Cosmic Quest. At first, I held off on it because it was a good enough concept that I wanted to save it for later, as I didn’t want to do all my original good ideas all at once. Then, once I re-introduced Jigglypuff into my series, I knew that this had to become a Jigglypuff episode, but since I wanted to spread out Jigglypuff’s appearances, I had to wait a little bit after the first one. The the franchise’s 20th anniversary came around, I decided to make my second Jigglypuff  episode the one with Butch and Cassidy, so this episode got put off again. Admittedly, at this point it’s been such a long time since that episode that I could have done it at any time. What happened now was simply that I kept putting this episode off. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to write it, it was more of there was always other episodes that needed to be done first, usually because they’re location and/or time- dependent, and this episode, which can be done at any time or place, was okay to push back. So, I finally found the chance to do here, and it was so great to finally be able to write this episode after planning it for so long.So, how about we break down each character’s dream, one by one.

Ash’s dream was obvious. What else would Ash dream about aside from becoming a Pokémon Master? This concept of Ash being invited to battle someone with the title of Pokémon Master was actually borrowed from my childhood. Back then, I always figured that’s how one would become a Pokémon Master, as if it were an official title, like Champion. I figured a childish interpretation of things wouldn’t be too far off from the way Ash would dream about it. On the topic of The Pokémon Master’s Pokémon, I gave him the three I did for specific reasons. Giratina is my personal favorite Pokémon, Mega Rayquaza is the strongest Pokémon stat-wise, and Arceus is the strongest Pokémon lore-wise. I wanted things to get as crazy as possible in the dream, so bringing in these three Pokémon did just that.

Brock dream was probably the highlight of the episode for me. Originally, I was just planning on Brock having one of those utterly random dreams were anything and everything happens. To start of this random, I had him sing Brock’s Paradise. Then the inspiration hit me to also have him sing Two Perfect Girls, from the Karaokemon segment of the show. Once I decided to this, I figured I might as well go all out and bring in as many songs as I could fit. Aside from Two Perfect Girls, The Song of Jigglypuff is the only other Pikachu’s Jukebox/Karaokemon song that features an in-universe character singing in some capacity, and since I already Jigglypuff in this episode, it seemed right to make this one of the songs. From there, I knew the final song had to be the craziest thing I could think of. Upon realizing this, I almost immediately  decided to have Ash and Brock sing the Poké Rap, and it was glorious.

For Brenda’s dream, I have a confession to make. While writing it, I felt quite guilty putting Brenda through so much agony. Judging by several reviews that were left, the readers felt the same. Since the point of this episode was to show different dreams, it makes sense to have a nightmare, and I decided I wanted to go all-out with it. I may have felt bad writing, but I’ll still stand by my decision to write it.

Meowth’s dream, unfortunately, had to be made short, as Ash and Brock both ran way too long in their dreams. So I just took the obvious route with him.

With Jessie’s dream, I’m honestly not sure what inspired that. I was just trying to think about what sort of things Jessie would dream about, and I decided the best answer was herself. From there, I just took that idea to the max.

James’ dream has some interesting implications. It would seem that when Team Rocket returned to their world after I kicked them off my website, that all their memories of the event were suppressed, only to reappear in this dream. I guess you can’t take memories from the real world into the world of Pokémon. Is that how Pokémon Mystery Dungeon works?