Video Game: Pokémon Reborn

Pokémon Reborn is an episodically released Pokémon fan game set in the newly created Reborn region. Interestingly, Pokémon Reborn is not a ROM Hack, but an RPG Maker game.

The story takes place in a world struggling with the aftermath of an environmental disaster. In Reborn City, Pokémon are scarce, the lake has more poison than water, plant life consumes whole wards quickly and without warning, and the population rarely ventures outside of the city. What's more, the local villainous team already has the region in their clutches. Enter our protagonist, a new trainer hoping to take on the Reborn League who finds themself caught up in much, much more.

The game is notable for having a mature story compared to the main Pokémon series, with a terrorist attack happening right in the intro. It's also mind-bendingly difficult, at least in relation to the canon games. For example, a level cap is enforced by the badge system in a much more strict manner, in that you aren't allowed to Level Grind past every leader or the overlevelled team members begin to disobey you. Moreover, there are some absurdly powerful bosses almost coming out of nowhere. They're far stronger than you'd ever expect at that point in the game, with teams and strategies straight out of the Competitive Multiplayer environment.

The game can be downloaded on its official website. There's also a fairly active forum, which has developed its own internal memes. (Just ask about Terra's couches.)

Tropes used in Pokémon Reborn:

  • Anti-Frustration Features: Starting with Episode 15, it's possible to re-battle the trainers found at the start of the game (with constantly scaling teams full of mons that give out ample experience) over and over again.
    • After completing a series of events that involves traverses a huge field and a puzzle involving Tauros and Boufflant, eventually you can speak to one of the former and get a time saving instant bypass from one side to the other.
    • Due to all Pokemon disobeying you if they're overleveled, a very cheap item that drops a Pokemon's level by 1 is available not long after the start of the game.
  • Arc Symbol: A circle surrounded by 4 rectangles resembling the wheel on Arceus's back appear almost everywhere in the game including a host of doors that cannot be opened. Similarly, The colors Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald, and Amethyst also seem to appear everywhere. It is revealed by Solaris that at least one of the doors was build by a civilization where Reborn now resides to enshrine where Arceus fell to earth and is sealed by the four respective stones in the form of jewelry, which later become the main Mac Guffins for the ongoing plot.
  • Alice Allusion: Luna, the Dark-Type Gym Leader, has her Pokémon nicknamed after Alice In Wonderland characters. The first female protagonist's official name is also Alice.
  • After the End
  • Ambiguously Gay / Bi the Way: Cain. Dresses like a punk girl and loves throwing out innuendos such as calling himself a princess and you his prince (regardless of your gender). He also likes singing.
  • Ambiguous Gender: Adrienn the fairy gym leader, who does not identify as male or female also, ZEL.
  • Anti-Grinding: Similar to the main series games, pokemon that have their levels too high will not obey you if you do not have enough gym badges. Unlike the main series however, it does not matter if they are trade or not.
  • Author Avatar / Creator Cameo: Ame, who serves as the administrator for the Reborn region. The actual Amethyst (a.k.a. the game's creator) has stated that she will have no major role in the game beyond that.
    • Almost all of major characters are members of the site's own pokemon League.
  • Battle Amongst the Flames: A field effect - grounded non-Fire types take Fire type Stealth Rock-esque damage, Fire moves are powered up, and Abilities activated by or related to Fire attacks activate automatically.
  • Big Damn Heroes: When Amaria saves you from a Garchomp.
  • Black Out Basement / Big Boo's Haunt: The abandoned Power Plant is both.
  • Bonus Boss: Several. Many popular or useful Pokemon are gated behind these, including typically easy to obtain Gastly.
  • Cigarette Burns: Charlotte burns Dr. Connal before escaping the Orphanage.
  • Crapsack World
  • Darker and Edgier: The establishing moment for the game is a terrorist attack on the train you were on.
  • The Dev Team Thinks of Everything: You're given a choice concerning where your sympathies lie regarding a conflict at one point. The game will remember and modify dialogue for a surprisingly long time afterward based on what you picked.
    • Rather or not you've joined up with the Magma or Aqua Gang will be reflected once you meet the famous Gossip Gardevoir.
    • During a puzzle involving Tauros, Boufflant, logs, and ledges, you might get stuck without a mount behind a ledge. In every place where this is possible, strange flowers can be stepped on that will warp you back to somewhere you can continue the game.
    • Dialogue is modified based on rather or not you've become an honorary police officer in a few places, as well.
    • The field effects are surprisingly in-depth - use Cut during a Forest field effect, and Cut increases in power and becomes dual Normal/Grass due to cutting down trees. Use Area of Effect Fire moves during the same, and the forest catches fire, transforming into an effect altogether far more useful for fire types, and likely detrimental to Pokemon (and trainers) more used to the forest. But summon rain during the aforementioned, and the fire will be extinguished, transforming back to its previous forest effect. And that's just one set of chain reactions possible.
  • Evil Counter Part: PULSE seems to be this to Mega Evolution - mechanically they're the same thing, albeit PULSE is almost exclusively a bad thing for the Pokemon involved. That it was developed by local evil team Team Meteor doesn't help things.
  • Field Power Effect: Tying in with the below Geo Effects, particular fields somehow amplify or weaken moves of particular types. Sometimes this is logical (an icy field makes Ice moves stronger) other times it's bizarre (a chess-themed field enhances Psychic moves, and makes them super effective against "dumb" Pokemon, or those with stereotypically unintelligent abilities like Klutz, Simple, or Unaware.)
  • Four Is Death: Shade is the 4th gym leader to give you a badge, and to battle him, you must access 4 monitors that foreshadow, or call back to, important events in the game.
  • Final Boss Preview: Not the final boss, but at one point at the game you team up with Amaria, a late-game gym leader. The enemy levels at this point in the game are in their mid-30's. Her Pokémon are in the mid-70's.
  • Frictionless Ice: Now weaponized! With the Icy field effect active, increased priority physical attacks gain extra power due to it.
  • Funny Background Event: Certain cutscenes will have amusing happenings in the background, such as Julia spinning circles around Florina as you scale the waterfall back from the Water Treatment Plant.
  • Gaia's Lament: The titular city of reborn. Team Meteor is the cause of it
  • Gaia's Vengeance: Attacks by plants have destroyed several wards. Team Meteor invoked this.
  • Geo Effects: Moreso than usual in Pokemon as of Episode 13. Rollout and other rolling moves increase in power on icy fields, Cut will become a dual type Grass/Normal move in heavily wooded areas, and dozens more.
  • Ghibli Hills: Route 1 and the areas directly to its south are so Ghibli, their Grassy field effect actually restores health to all grounded Pokemon every turn. You can, however, corrupt it with Poisonous attacks until the end of any given battle if you so wish. They're something of a Breather Level compared to the dreary environments you've seen prior as well, up until you reach the two gym leaders waiting along the way, anyway....
  • Grande Dame: Mrs.Craudberry
  • Guide Dang It: While far from the only example, the process to obtain the game's sole available pseudo-legendary (at level 5 during a time when your Pokemon are likely pushing their 50s) requires such a long series of counter intuitive actions that border on Metroid-esque Sequence Breaking levels of lateral thinking that the game itself literally calls bullshit on it once you're successful.
  • Informed Attribute: Reborn's Pokemon population is supposedly in great decline. The most this means to the player is that nearly every Pokemon worth using in the early game requires a special event to obtain, rather than simply appearing randomly. Dozens upon dozens of trainers still use the things, and it's not hard to amass hundreds yourself.
  • Jerk Ass: While he may not seem that way when you first meet him, after you get your first badge, Fern quickly establishes himself as one of these when you next meet him
  • Just Between You and Me: Subverted - The (apparent) head of Team Meteor is only explaining his plan to distract you while his Garchomp kills you.
  • Level Drain: Common Candies are introduced in Reborn. The polar opposite of series mainstay Rare Candy, these inexpensive sweeets will drop a Pokemon's level by one, in case you've been level grinding too much and none of your team listens to you any more.
  • Light-Flicker Teleportation: Shade does this randomly if you wait in the center of his gym.
  • Lost Forever: A lot moreso than the early generations of Pokemon, where only a handful of Pokemon were once off. Here nearly every noteworthy early game monster is, if they're available at all, and if you faint them during their special event, say goodbye to your chance at one, though, in some cases, you can later catch its evolved form. Emphasis on some.
  • Orphanage of Fear: The Lapis Ward Orphanage
  • Peninsula of Power Leveling: Invoked. You can easily level up any Pokemon you need by returning to the center near the start of the game and fighting the trainers there ad nausem, who provide decent sources of both money and experience.
  • Polluted Wasteland: The Byxbian Wasteland is an unusual example: It was not created by humans and is continuously growing despite few people dumping their trash there. An attempted cleanup for the expansion of the city was met with failure when all the trash that was there reappeared overnight when they attempted to clean it up. it is heavily hinted that this is the result of Team Meteor hooking up a talking Garbrador, Mr. Bigglesworth to a pulse.
  • Psycho Psychologist: Dr. Sigmund runs an Orphanage of Fear and puts his charges through literal shock therapy.
  • Shout-Out: After the Grand Stairway is destroyed in Northern Obsidia Ward, you can find a civilian who will say "On this day, humanity received a grim reminder..."
    • One of the fishermen on Apophyll Beach, when commenting on all the Grimer in the water, mutters "One grime to rule them all, and in the murkness, bind them".
    • In Lapis Ward, there is a lady named Lenore who uses a Luvdisc and a Murkrow.
    • The highest rank you (or a combatant Pokemon) can reach on High Striker? Over 9000, of course.
    • A woman recites a modified version of Avatar: The Last Airbender 's opening narration in Coral Ward before Adrienn returns. This is actually a subtle hint as to why and how they disappeared, as well.
    • You can join the Magma Gang or Aqua Gang, lead by Maxwell and Archer respectively. It's lampshaded to hell and back by both leaders.
    This rehash of the Magma and Aqua conflict ends here!!
    • On 7th Street there is a cult dedicated to The Helix Fossil. Additionally there is a trainer with a Charmeleon named named ABBBBBBK.
  • Sympathy for the Devil: Despite the myriad terrible things Team Meteor does, the game goes out of its way to make it clear they're not completely evil villains. Even the mooks have names for one, A fact that is actually used at one point to humanize a pair of confused Meteor Grunts, and you wind up in an enemy mine situation with them regarding an out of control Abra. The "nice" personality of ZEL's even thanks you for it, and is reprimanded by one of the meaner ones.
  • Sweet Dreams Fuel: In-universe, the Rainbow field effect is apparently this - sleeping Pokemon recover health due to sleeping peacefully, and Nightmare and the ability Bad Dreams are ineffective.
  • The Battle Didn't Count: When you defeat the boss battle Solaris, on top of the volcano, which is meant to be lost, as the boss is over 30 levels higher than your Pokemon, he shrugs it off and acts as if he ended the fight because he was bored.
  • Villainous Harlequin: The clowns found in the circus try to be creepy (for no apparent reason), but mostly come off as silly.
  • Violation of Common Sense: While trapped in a cage, your obnoxious rival offers to help you out if you kneel and beg for it. Opting not to leads to him leaving, and what is assumed to be Taka's Chatot freeing you roughly 3 real time minutes later anyway, but there's no way for you to know beforehand that that would happen.
  • Wham Line: At the showdown on Pyrous Mountain:
    Solaris: Cal! Stop her!
  • Would Hurt a Child: One of the Meteor grunts threatens to cut Shelly's throat if you don't back off. He can't really go through with it, though, when Charlotte calls his bluff.
  • Wretched Hive: The overwhelming majority of Reborn City, though the cake goes to 7th Street, filled with junkies, caged black market Pokemon, and stolen goods.