Episode 106 Review (Featuring ChaosProjectAuthor)

Hello, Cosmic Quest readers! This is ChaosProjectAuthor, but you can call me Chaos. Most of you probably know me better as the guy who makes the sprites you’ve seen around this website, and by extension, for the recently-revealed Pokémon Sol Version project as well. While I’ve been deeply involved in the development and planning of Cosmic Quest since the very beginning, this is the first time I’ve ever participated in the actual writing. So now I’m here to review the episode I wrote.

Continuing from where I left off on my own website (where fans of Yuni’s other works can get some behind-the-scenes info on Yu-Gi-Oh! Millennium as well), when Yuni first suggested the possibility of a writer’s exchange, I was hesitant, but definitely interested. Who could say no to free advertising? Well for me, the first challenge was apparent. Yuni knew exactly what he wanted to write for my story. But what would I write for his? In order to be an effective advertisement, I would need to make sure that the entire episode reflected who I am as a writer, so that potential readers drawn to my stories could know what they’re in for. That meant coming up with an episode idea that is largely character focused, that has room for emotional growth, and that connects to the reader on that same emotional level. In my own writing, that’s always my goal. The style of the Pokémon anime isn’t quite so conducive to that as the Sonic universe that I’m used to working with, and that’s what made this a challenge. But on top of all that, I also wanted to show that I know what I’m doing, to take advantage of this opportunity, by writing a story that could only exist in the Pokémon world. In my own story, which tends to be at least somewhat grounded in scientific reality, I would never just have a flat-out ghost as a character. But in Pokémon, where we’ve already seen clear proof of ghosts from the Pokémon Tower of Kanto all the way to Acerola’s “Mimikins” my idea for Shinx in this episode fit right in. And of course, writing a story that can only exist in the Pokémon world also means relying heavily on the inherent bond between Trainer and Partner Pokémon, which, conveniently enough, allowed me to add a lot of emotional depth to the episode without much extra work. You don’t need to do much to show a bond like that, because any Pokémon fan will understand that it’s there.

But I’ve gotten a little ahead of myself. I was faced with the problem of what to write, and there was no obvious answer. I’ve recommended episode ideas to Yuni before, and all of them have made it in, so in that sense, it felt like all of my best ideas were already used up. After a lot of brainstorming, I had a few preliminary ideas. I considered an episode involving Team Rocket shenanigans, but in the meantime, Yuni wrote an episode that felt a little too similar to what I had in mind. I considered an episode that would bring back an old character, but I was worried about that being in even more conflict with Yuni’s ideas than my previous consideration. Lastly, I considered an episode that would introduce a new Pokémon, as well as a character from Pokémon Sol Version that none of you know about yet! For quite a while, that was the idea I was leaning towards, but I felt like it would’ve fallen just a little short in terms of the emotional weight that I was looking for.

As it was getting down to the wire, just a couple of weeks before I needed to start writing, I had a dream. And that dream became Episode 106. How close was that dream to the final product? Shockingly close, actually. The story of Shinx and Pichu, the burned bakery, and Pichu’s attempt to get in the way, it was all there (though Pichu was a Pikachu in the dream, and it got a few ridiculous dream-induced plot points that naturally had to be removed). Rabbolt’s role in the story had to be added, but I was very happy to get the chance to work on Rabbolt’s character, since that’s been something I’ve been complaining about to Yuni for a while. And with the other Electric-Type Pokémon already there, it just made sense. What’s funny to me is that the inspiration for my own story, The Chaos Project, came to me in a dream in almost exactly the same way. That odd connection alone was enough to make me certain that this was the episode I had to write.

One other point of note is this episode’s integration with the rest of the story. At the time I started planning, I had no idea that Brenda was going to be experiencing any kind of overarching character development, but I knew how I could fit it right in before I was even done reading the previous episode. In fact, Yuni shared with me that he still wasn’t quite sure what do with his plans for the development of Brenda’s style, which means that I was not only able to acknowledge that plot point, but quite probably influence its direction for the rest of the story. But even I don’t know what the result will be! I guess we’ll all just have to stay tuned!

And if you haven’t already, don’t forget to read Yuni’s episode of The Chaos ProjectOr better yet, if you’re interested in Sonic and enjoyed my episode of Cosmic Quest, read The Chaos Project from the beginning!

Episode 106: That’s the Spirit!

A special guest-written episode has appeared! Read the episode here.

When a mischievous Pichu steals some of Brock’s home cooking, Ash, Brenda, and Rabbolt chase after it, but end up trying to help a Shinx overcome its haunted past. But there’s more to this Shinx than meets the eye.

Also, the Pokédex page has been updated accordingly.

This episode was guest written by my brother, who you might know as the artist of the various sprites and images across this website. He’s the author of his own story, a Sonic the Hedgehog story called The Chaos Project. If you’re interested in Sonic, I highly suggest you give his story a read, I even guest wrote an episode for him in return. Read his story here, or visit his website here. Or, if you just want to read the episode I wrote, see it here.

Finally, be sure to come back to this website on July 5th, the fifth anniversary of Cosmic Quest. I have an absolutely massive announcement to make regarding the future of the Tenno Region, and you’re not going to want to miss it.

Team Rocket Q&A Session II

Team Rocket Takeover II Stamp Tilted

Meowth: Can I get a drum roll please?

*Drums*

Jessie and James: It’s time for our main event! The Team Rocket Q&A Session!

Meowth: You guys have been posting questions all day, and now it’s our turn to answer them!

James: You’re about to get to know us on a whole new level!

Jessie: Let’s start things off with a question from BTH777. They ask, “Aside from the Team Rocket Movie, which Pokémon movie is your guys’s favorite?”

James: Just to be clear, this question was asked before either my Rocket Reviews episode or the Bossies aired. For reasons stated there, I think we can all agree that Mewtwo Strikes back is our favorite movie.

Meowth and Jessie: Agreed.

James: Next question! PokeMan96 asks, “How do you guys afford to make so many mechas?”

Meowth: You saw the post about us selling mechas? It’s scams- I mean, it’s marketing strategies like that which keep us funded.

Jessie: Of course, any extra cash we have goes into my wardrobe shopping.

James: Leaving us with no money left over…

Meowth: Okay, a user who was later identified as MajorBrony95 asked tree questions at once.

James: Let’s take them one at a time.

Meowth: Agreed. First they ask, “We know James collects bottle caps as a hobby, but do Jessie or Meowth have any hobbies?”

Continue reading

Episode 100 Review

Let me start off by saying it was an absolute pleasure to write this 100th episode. Thank you for reading.

Ever since I first wrote the Anime 20th Anniversary special, Ashes to Ashes, I’ve contemplated how I could possibly bring back Cinder and Ember. I really liked the characters, and obviously time travelers from the future have a lot of untapped potential. I knew that if I used them again, would want to write a story set in their time. I had often contemplated having an episode with them as the main characters, but without the proper excuse, it just seemed a little awkward. While planning the 100th episode special, I realized that this was the perfect excuse. To add to that, I knew I needed an episode that acted as a celebration of the series so far. That’s what inspired the idea of having Cinder and Ember on a Tenno journey parallel to Ash’s.

As this was my second outing with Cinder and Ember, I was able to do some things with them that I was unable to do previously. For example, Ember’s Pichu was an idea I had for Ashes to Ashes, but I cut the idea, deciding that it was unnecessary. I later regretted that decision, so I rectified it here. I was also able to further explore Cinder’s complicated relationship with his father. I had to keep it mostly subdued previously, as the identity of his father was a surprise. But now that it’s known, I was able to explore things more. To expand on that, Cinder and Jerry’s rivalry was inspired by common negative reactions by fans to Ash. Jerry would point out all of the worse in Ash, completely ignoring his strengths, up until the end, where we see Ash’s greatest strength of all.

Featured prominently in this episode was future Brenda. It’s difficult for me to write for future Ash or Brock, as they are actual characters from the actual series. I could easily break canon by handling them wrong in the future, therefore I kept their roles to an absolute minimum. Brenda, on the other hand, is my own character, and I can do whatever I want with her. I can give her new Pokémon like Kappaquarius and Lichenthrope, because I know exactly what my plans are for her as the series moves forward. No contradictions. That’s not to say that she will get these Pokémon by the end of Cosmic Quest, it just means that there’s no reason why she wouldn’t have  them  twenty years in the future.

Perhaps one of the more interesting aspects of this episode was the new Team Rocket, Bonnie, Clyde, and Meowla. For the record, I will confirm that Bonnie is the daughter of James, and that Clyde is the son of Jessie, but I will not confirm that they are siblings. Maybe they are, maybe they aren’t. We’ll never know. I am in no way endorsing any ships.

Episode 47 Review

As is obvious, this episode is the continuation of the story presented in the episodes Electric Shock Showdown and Pika and Goliath, both of which presented Pikachu with a challenging Raichu opponent, and the option to Evolve. The idea to do such an episode came to my mind when I was trying to think of ways to use Mega Raichu in the story. I realized that Mega Raichu could step up the story entirely. I did have one problem though. I am against the idea of having random trainers use Mega Evolutions, so I didn’t want some random character of the day to be using this Mega Raichu. Initially I considered having this be a rematch with Lt. Surge, but decided against that. Then I realized how perfect Ritchie could be for this. He’s a great choice for a trainer who can Mega Evolve, as he was shown to have a deep bond with his Pokémon. Also, him defeating Ash and Pikachu would mean a lot more than just some random trainer with a Raichu would. So I made the call to have Ritchie Evolve Sparky, which also served as an additional reason for Ash and Pikachu to reconsider their decision of not Evolving. The rest of the episode pretty much wrote itself from there.

One other interesting thing worth talking about is the origin of Mega Raichu. It actually has a history hearkening back to the first ever Pokémon I created. One day as a young child I was watching an episode of Pokémon. It occurred to me that Pikachu really deserved to Evolve. I had yet to see the Electric Shock Showdown episode, and didn’t even know that Raichu existed. So I decided to design Pikachu’s Evolution myself. So I took out some crayons and paper and created what I dubbed Megachu, the Evolution of Pikachu. It was this creation that would inspire me to eventually create an entire region and game concepts, which would eventually turn into Cosmic Quest. Eventually I did learn about Raichu’s existence, but since Megachu was the first ever Pokémon I created, I couldn’t let go of it, so I made it instead an Evolution of Raichu. Now at this time I did not know about Pichu. Once I learned about Pichu I was stubborn enough to say that Pikachu is so special that it gets to have four Pokémon in its Evolution line. Of course, as time went on I dropped the concept of Megachu entirely. But then X and Y introduced Mega Evolution. Not only was it technically a fourth stage of Evolution, but it even had Mega in the name. It was perfect. So Megachu was reincarnated as Mega Raichu.

Train on!

Episode 18 Review

It should obvious, as it was basically flat out stated, Rabbolt is the Tenno Region’s member of the Pikachu family. For those who don’t know, the Pikachu family is a group of Pokémon introduced each region that look like Pikachu, but are not. This group includes Raichu, Pichu, Plusle, Minum, Pachirisu, Emolga, and Dedenne. I knew I was going to have Rabbolt be caught by Brenda to follow the recent tradition set by Dawn, Iris, and Clemont with their respective Pokémon. The idea for its personality came from a thought I had; it always seems like Pikachu can get along with any Pokémon, so I thought it would be funny if there came one that didn’t like Pikachu. Putting two and two together, I decided that Rabbolt wold be perfect for this role.