E3’s batch of Sun and Moon info brought with it the debut of 3 new pokemon. If early releases are any indication it looks like we can expect Sun and Moon to take strong inspiration from Hawaii’s local fauna. Pikipek shares a strong resemblance to the red-crested cardinal, and Yungoos is the pokemon equivalent of one of Hawaii’s most prominent invasive species. With that in mind I made a quick list of some other species we can expect to find around the Alola region.
llio holo I ka uaua (Monk Seal)
The obvious choice for a Popplio evolution. Literally translated to “dog that runs in rough water,” monk seals are some of the largest animals you’ll find around Hawaii, and they’re adorable to boot. Worst case scenario? Game Freak takes the name a little too literally and we get a water/fighting design, but would a warrior-monk seal slapping the hell out its opponents really be the worst thing ever?
The state (and my personal favorite) fish of Hawaii. They are smart, sassy fish that love to tease
divers and spear fisherman by swimming right in front of your face. It’s like they know they’re a protected species. Plus, they make snorting noises! I’d love to see that personality brought to life in a pokemon, and the name triggerfish is just begging for it.
Koholā (Humpback Whale)
Humpbacks are featured in several “legends of creation” in Hawaiian lore, and for good reason. The behemoths frequent the islands during the winter months of their annual migration and put on quite a spectacle. We haven’t seen a new whale pokemon debut since Ruby/Sapphire, so I think it’s safe to say we’re overdue, yeah? I’m picturing another massive whale with a hard plate of ice and steal along its top side.
Nai`a (Spinner Dolphin)
After 20 years of games, how has there not been true dolphin pokemon? Also odd is the fact that there are no stories of dolphins in Hawaiian myths, despite there being 4 types found around the islands. Hopefully a glut of potential water pokemon doesn’t keep a dolphin-type out of the mix.
Named after its soft call, the nēnē is the all too rare state bird of Hawaii. The elegant look to its feathers would make a gorgeous addition to the series’ bird lineup. I also learned that a few hundred years ago the Hawaiian islands were home to a giant species of nēnē, so there’s potential for a terror-goose evolution.
They may not be native, but they’ve left their mark. Kalua pork is a delicious island staple, and I’m pretty sure everyone who lives here knows at least one person who’s been boar hunting in their life. There have been plenty of pig pokemon over the years, so I won’t be disappointed if one gets left out this gen, but they had to at least be mentioned.
The stuff of nightmares. These monsters grow up to a foot long and looove to hide anywhere you don’t expect. It’s said their bite feels like a pair of hot nails driven into your skin. I haven’t been bit yet, *furiously knocks on wood* but the thought alone still haunts me. Venipede and Scolopede exist, so we may not see another centipede pokemon, but Grubbin . To be quite honest I only listed them so I wouldn’t have to suffer the fear of these things alone.
A bizarre looking grass that exclusively grows on the uppermost slopes of Haleakalā on Maui and Mauna Kea on the Big Island. It’s alien-like appearance could make for some great pokemon designs and typeset combinations.
Meganium may have worn an hibiscus flower as an accessory, but I think there’s still room in the next gen for a new floral pokemon. Given the wide range of colors found with hibiscus, I’d especially love to an hibiscus pokemon become the new vivillon, with a wide variety of styles found throughout the game.
The scourge of the islands. If you’ve spent any time here, you’ve surely seen your fair share of them. Cockroaches thrive in the warm and wet environments of Hawaii, and it’s a constant battle to keep them at bay. If there is a roach pokemon in Sun and Moon, I fully expect it to be a staple of the enemy organization’s thug repetoire.
That’s it for this list. There are countless other species around Hawaii that deserve the pokemon treatment, but these are some of the most likely options. Just a few more months before we see just how accurate these predictions are.