Web Original / PMD-Explorers
, PMD-Explorers is a storytelling group specializing in Pokémon Mystery Dungeon
art and literature, with its own established universe that goes far beyond the scope of the original games, and elements of competition.
The structure merges the GM's task of assigning events for all the players to follow with PMD's missions (although some of them are different from the games' usual variety), wherein each player draws or writes out their team accomplishing the missions assigned. Unlike PMD (though not too different from other RPs), where all teams follow a single adventure guild, players must choose to join one of three guilds that make their home in Tao Village:
- The Rescuers, your archetypal good guys who follow the moral code to the letter and will commit themselves to the pursuit of justice.
- The Merchants, those who work for the acquisition of Poke, and thus will usually do things for the profit they might reap.
- The Rogues, an Robin Hood-esque bunch that don't mind getting their hands dirty if it'll help those in need and such.
Naturally, these guilds don't always get along with each other despite the fact that they're all within the same place. The RP universe is chock-full of various NPC
s such as the guild leaders, villagers with specific roles, and even legendaries that play a specific role in the world.
Starting from simple missions similar to the in-game ones, the scenarios eventually escalated as they involved battling legendaries and dealing with mystic instruments, and a disaster that destroyed the village. Things settled down afterwards, but they ramped up again as more problems crop up in the world around the village.
So far, there are two arcs:
- Arc 1: Snowflake Tears: Missions and Events 1-5, focusing on the revival of a Kyurem and the complications that arose from it. Culminated in Tao Village's destruction. A summary can be found here.
- Arc 2: The current and unnamed arc, covering Missions and Events 6-10. The plot follows the rebuilding and distant history of Tao Village, which is somehow connected to a mysterious clan of Zoroarks and their "God".
In addition, there are multiple side-stories that detail NPC
's pasts or important interactions, which can be found here, in alphabetical order.
Since Mission 7, the Missions and Events are now shown through Flash animation, allowing everyone to also get their own Leitmotifs
among other things. This has escalated even further with actual VA
s for characters in missions as of the April Fools' Day
Flash. In addition, a game based off PMD is in the works, which will star GK and give more backstory on PK's heritage.
Has an alternate wiki here
, with its own timeline and character sheets.
As of September 17th, 2013, the group has officially closed, succeeded by an altogether different kind of original universe known as Floraverse
. A webcomic
supplemented by interactive events hosted on Deviantart will allegedly incorporate unused story elements from PMD-E group eventually.
This group has examples of:
- Art Shift: The illustrations associated with the short stories can shift dramatically in style from page to page. These ◊ are pictures◊ from the same◊ self-contained tale◊.
- Back from the Dead: Slasher, Guld, Devon, and Blot as Gnasher, Gold, Devonshire, and Blight respectively.
- It was revealed in the script for the Mission 8 epilouge that just about everyone came back due to another mistake on Jasmine's behalf.
- Big, Screwed-Up Family: PK's, boy howdy. It's easier to count the ones that don't have some kind of psychosis or crippling character flaw.
- Bilingual Bonus: French is spoken infrequently in some of the prologues and epilogues by various characters, and a Mawile from a Japan analogue refers to the fish he serves using their Japanese names.
- Bleached Underpants: Zigzagged. The artist behind the story was known, well before the beginning of the group, to draw explicit artwork, and has drawn several (sometimes canonical) pornographic images and stories featuring PMDE characters. Excepting one, these are almost always kept completely separate and hidden from the main story, viewable only on a blog intended for adult viewers, and, while often referenced, sometimes in extremely blatant ways, the stories in question can safely be considered Noodle Incidents that influence the plot more subtly than other major events. It's not unlike a Visual Novel in which you, the reader, may choose to hunt down and read the H-scenes if you feel so inclined.
- Body Horror: The golden eyed Zoroark, who are all missing some physical feature.
- Except Shade, who is missing a child.
- Special mention for Blot, a Zoroark wrapped in bloody bandages after sacrificing his own skin.
- Butt-Monkey: Mike and Winston. Winston is more of The Woobie, especially considering he dies.
- Matt in particular serves as one, to the point that even fundamental aspects of reality like physics and anatomy are unkind to him.
- Carnivore Confusion: Tackled head on. Some carnivorous monsters do, in fact, consume other Pokemon. It's taboo in the story's primary location, but apparently omnipresent in larger cities or other settlements, to such an extent that a sushi bar serving Seaking and Squirtle operates openly. Dummy eggs and other substitutes are eaten by those who desire not to.
- Chekhov's Gunman: Blight, a major antagonist in Mission 8, actually appeared in this commission PK had completed more than two months prior to his debut in the prologue flash. Even the commissioner was unaware he would eventually become a plot point. note
- Styx was only in a minor task in Mission 2 before appearing in "Complementaries", where he spouts seemingly random lines. It was revealed indirectly through other stories that he is actually foreshadowing the return of the Djinns/Kami Trio
- Conveniently an Orphan: Many official and a large number of player created teams qualify for this. Justified by the nature of the PMD world itself. Many pokemon hatch as eggs in the middle of nowhere and don't have much of a family to begin with. Some, like Mike, have some form of Parental Substitute though many for the most part aren't too worried about their situation.
- Dark and Troubled Past: PK, Gunpowder, and Devonshire are all guilty of this.
- Darker and Edgier: Twice over. The entire series to its inspiration, and the events in the past to all those in the present.
- Depending on how you slice it, three times over. The PMD series compared to all other pokemon media, PMDE to the PMD series, and the current events to the start of PMDE.
- Dark Reprise: Micle Nomel and Anana have one during the flashes. The former's kicks in when he almost ''gleefully'' reveals what he did to have a pair of special ponchos made, while the latter's plays while she suffers what appears to be a mental breakdown over all the problems plaguing her city.
- In the flash "Lethe Wept", PK 's theme starts to play when Mike trips over her while entering the tent. Mike notices something is wrong with her when she misses two attacks on him (being in the Charmander line, whose tails are always on fire, making him a very easy target). When PK finally realizes what happened, the music changes into a more somber tone as PK declares she's gone blind.
- Diabolus ex Nihilo: The random Heatran living in Devonshire's tunnel system. His only purpose in the story was to make escaping Sorbet's rampage difficult, and he essentially dropped off the radar entirely after his mission was over. He was barely mentioned (if at all) in the mission epilogue too.
- Doomed Hometown:Courtesy of a brainwashed Sorbet
- Double Standard: Rape, Female on Male: There are at least two sexual assaults that have occured throughout the main story. One victim is male, and the other female. Guess which is treated sympathetically, and which is played for laughs.
- Early Installment Weirdness: Before things became more established and the plot and setting grew more sophisticated, most characters used either very silly or Species Surnames, and the tasks were very simple art prompts. Master Foo, Kanga, and a couple of other characters' names are artifacts of this. The extra monthly tasks are something of a throwback to this simpler time, for players who might be lost in the expansive plot and just want to contribute in small ways.
- Fantastic Drug: Enigma, Jacoba, and Rowap Berries. Because for a while, they weren't possible to get legally in the west in the main series games.
- Fantastic Racism: In the Sapling Village, all Shroomish are seen as... slow, to put it nicely.
- Fantasy Counter Part Culture: Tao seems to be a rough equivalent to early North America (complete with French Canada), Velle is an amalgamation of Europe, and Jipang is Japan.
- Stereotypes for other 'mons exist, too, and of course the Zangoose/Seviper feud is present.
- Fluffy the Terrible: Sorbet the Kyurem.
- Foreshadowing: By far one of the greatest weapons the creators of PMD have.
- Styx spouted cryptic message that unnerved Shroomsworth after the latter caught up with him. Only when the stories of The Appraising, Inspiration, and Moth and Flame did the pieces all start to come together.
- The paintings of Shade's children each show events that have yet to have happened, but are confirmed arcs for the future.
- One of the artifacts that Anana gives the rouges for evicting the Merchants is called "Life Tea", a very rare tea with magical healing properties and let's the user learn Recover only once. In part 1 of "Lethe Wept", It is revealed it was the very same tea that saved PK as a child, and the tea she herself was trying to make to save Charles.
- GIS Syndrome: Tao High, as part of its Stylistic Suck.
- Grey and Gray Morality: In the past, a tribe of Zoroark have become hell-bent on destroying Tao Village. The village's founder, Micle, has been shown to have questionable ethics.
- Green-Eyed Monster: PK's Sister, Anana is this to her.
- High School A.U.: One was added for players to participate on April 1st, 2013, through May 28th.
- Interspecies Romance: With so many pokemon running around and working together, this is almost certain to occur.
- Mike and Opal
- PK and Shroomsworth - Or PK and Twigs
- Jacob Marley Warning: Subverted. Instead of warning his past self not to die, Devonshire tells him he will die soon and visits himself mainly to obtain more about the past he forgot.
- Jerkass: Slasher. A ruthless Sneasel leader who had no problems using children to do his dirty work for him.(and punishing them strictly for failure) Let's not mention the fact that he has killed many sneasels who have evolved or were about to eveolve, so no one could rise up against him.
- Micle Nomel. He seems like he's simply an old fashioned, rude, loud mouthed, misogynistic person - a product of an older time, at worst. Than we learn he cut off the tails of his wife and child to have a pair of supernatural ponchos made to help his war effort, a revelation he drops with absolutely no signs of remorse.
- Jerkass Genie: Thundurus subverts this by not granting wishes and just causing terror in Steel City for no reason whatsoever, but Phlegethon the Landorus causes chaos because of one pokemon who didn't even want a wish anyway. Which doesn't stop her from killing him with her final wish, all the same.
- Karma Houdini: Shade and her family. They are collectively responsible for most of the tragedies in the story up to now and dozens (if not hundreds) of injuries and deaths, but no action was taken against them for a very long time, and the worst thing that has happened to anyone of them is that Shade got slightly ruffed up when the Tao Villagers finally decided to capture her. Meanwhile, most other antagonists are either swiftly imprisoned, beaten to an inch of their lives, or killed outright.
- Killed Off for Real: Winston in Mission 7 epilogue. Confirmed by Word of God that he will never return.
- Let's Fight Like Gentlemen: Shroomsworth's method of fighting and honor code.
- Loads and Loads of Characters: Inevitable with such a large group. Some members have multiple teams for different guilds they participate in. Even keeping track of all the Non Player Characters is a small headache.
- 182 characters at ther time of this writng, with even more on the horizon.
- Mad Oracle: Styx.
- Maid Corps: Merlot the Lugia has a small army of servants living in her castle. Virtually all of them wear maid uniforms. Regardless of gender.
- Moe Anthropomorphism: While far from strictly "moe", a popular meme among the group involves drawing one's Pokemon characters as humans. The very androgynous illustrations produced for one such important NPC tipped players off to their true nature.
- The Multiverse: Seems to share one with an (alternate?) version of the Main series Pokemon world and a High School A.U., at least. Interdimensional travel is seen at least once, and it's subtly talked about during the "Reboot" Flash.
- Military Coup: By the Alomomola Corps in Mission 8, with assistance from the Rogue's Guild, evicting the current Merchant's Guild as orchestrated by Anana.
- Noodle Incident: In universe, the Shroomsworth/Merlot Toll Incident, in addition to a few other events of a similar nature. The story entailing it isn't found on the wiki nor the Deviantart group's collection of works, but it's ultimately subverted (and pretty common knowledge amongst participants), out of universe.
- Nice Job Breakingit Hero: When PK steals the Thistle Whistle to heal Shroomsworth's leg, the Sapling Village tries to send a letter to PK via Sporegard, Shroomsworth's little brother, who gets lost in a blizzard caused by Sorbet. The Sapling Elder tries to find him in the blizzard and dies protecting Sporegard from the storm. To make matters worse, Sorbet was brought to the village by PK to help make things better. This also causes Shroomsworth to leave Tao village, making her an even bigger snowball of depression. So she actually breaks it 3 times at once.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: PK at first, as an allusion to the main illustrator/writer of the story. Her real name is eventually revealed as Payapa Kiwi.
- Our Ghosts Are Different: Some are born like anyone else (but are nonetheless effectively immortal), others are created upon a Pokémon's death due to strong ties to a person, place, or ideal. The latter group is quite unpleasant far more often than not.
- Power at a Price: Anyone with Golden eyes has given something up to obtain unnatural abilities. Gleam has lost his entire mouth and Gnemon has lost her sight.
- One Zoroark ostensibly gave up his fur and skin for his, leaving him in a bleeding, bandage swathed mess.
- GK's two ponchos require the following: A clump of Latios and Latias feathers, a mystical scroll, and the tails of his own wife and son.
GK: Gotta give to get.
- Punny Name: All the (once living) ghosts have names based on their living selves, sometimes with nothing but a letter changed between them.
- Running Gag: Many characters have alluded to an incident involving Shroomsworth, Merlot, a toll the former refused to pay, and his ensuing punishment.
- Sanity Slippage: Anana finally snaps in Mission 8 Prolouge when her stress reaches it's peak. Her own Sanity Slippage Song is further proof.
- Scarf Of Asskicking: Dimitri, Rhodes, and Fresnel make sure each of the guild leader teams have one of these, and because scarves are one of the basic accessories that player teams can start out with, this trope is common with many of them.
- Shades of Conflict: Seen throughout the members of the three guilds.
- Species Surname: Mostly averted in stark contrast to its inspiration, partly out of necessity, given there're several Pokemon of the same species featured.
- Stylistic Suck: Tao High. All of it. Bonus points goes to Matt's rogue head and the jpeg fire.
- Suddenly Voiced: A whole lot of characters as of the er... Reboot.
- Surprisingly Good Foreign Language: Because PMD-E is an international project, all foreign languages are accurate.
- Talk Like a Pirate: YARR! Gunpowder be guilty of speakin like dis, y'see?
- Theme Naming: Very common. PK's family are named for various fruit, the Muskedeers take their names from different kinds of swords, most Zoroark are named after art terms, and so on.
- Timey-Wimey Ball: Subverted. Because most of the admins agreed that time travel could make things very confusing and annoying, the whole time travel arc is actually contained in a Stable Time Loop. However, whenever Jasmine tries to explain how time travel or alternate realities work, it sure as hell sounds like one of these.
- Took a Level in Badass: Mike the Charmander's evolution. It gives him enough power to knock down Tivoli the Tyranitar and serves as the origin point to the scar he sports in the present to boot.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: Many NPCs do so over time. For example, compare the relatively pleasant Fresnel at the time of his introduction late in the first arc to how he acts throughout the second one.
- Justified insofar as he never intended to run an entire organization (especially not by himself, what with Mike running off and subsequently being tossed into the past) when he first came to Tao. The stress would likely sour anyone.
- Translation Convention: Averted. Foreigners speak broken English or their respective languages.
- Trans Nature: Malt, Dee, and Gunpowder are female to male, male to female, and female to male transgender Pokemon, respectively.
- Trauma Conga Line: PK get's whammed with this in Mission 6. Her village is ruined, Shroomsworth leaves her after he finds out something she stole eventually lead to the death of the Sapling Village Elder, her sister Anana sister comes by to visit her when she's at her lowest, and Twigs, an aristocrat, offers to help the village if she goes on dates with him. Just to make this all even worse, all of this happens on her birthday. PK gets so depressed during this she actually turns completely black and even a pale white from pure stress.
- Unsettling Gender Reveal: The reactions to Gunpowder's true sex still shocks people to this very day.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: Arianna. In fear of Sorbet's cold spell endangering the lives of the many Grass types in the Sapling Village, She uses the Thistle Whistle to lock down the village by creating gigantic thistles to cover the radius of the city, preventing anyone from entering or leaving. Did we forget to mention that she could also control any of the grass types in the village to bend to her will?
- Micle Nomel. He disfigured his family and has no qualms about murdering others when it would further the goals of himself and his village.
- Weather Dissonance: When Sorbet arrives in Tao Village, it starts to snow. In the middle of summer.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: After Mission 5, what happened to the Heatran living in the underground tunnels is still unknown. Word of God says he might pop up again.
- The Worf Effect: Tivoli the Tyrant Gets his ass kicked a lot Despite his position and reputation. To wit -
- PK bit the end of his tail off and escaped him.
- Devonshire subdued him in a few seconds without assistance.
- Even an evolved Mike the Charmeleon managed to knock him on his ass and stun him. With a single punch.
- Xanatos Gambit: Caldera won his employment by playing a game with Lexy. Despite technically loosing, the wording he chose got him hired anyways based on another condition created by the game. He also produced a plan to allow Shade to save her children, by suggesting she request help from Lexy in a note. Both gambits technically had 'loose' conditions, but these conditions were understood to be unlikely.