In April 2011, I restarted my SoulSilver cartridge because I bought that only for the legendaries it was holding. I named my trainer YTWC, and started with a Cyndaquil named Bazooka. I played the game until the point where you get the mystery egg from Mr. Pokémon and stopped there for a while. That was before you get Poké Balls. Then I drew a comic about this short gameplay, and I was unsure should I continue or not. Since the feedback I got was positive, I decided to continue.
Yes, this small piece of paper is the first memo of my SoulSilver nuzlocke, and it holds the events from the beginning to Slowpoke Well. It’s really obscure, and doesn’t even mention where I caught my first few Pokémon (while doing the comic it wasn’t too long since I had played this, so I could remember so it really didn’t matter). No battle log for gym battle, no mention of any close calls: I still remember how before getting Poké Balls and other Pokémon, there was a little bit critical situation where a Rattata almost knocked Bazooka out with few Tail Whips and Tackle/Quick Attack/whatever attack combo. I didn’t include that in the comic, like many of things: I skipped Cherrygrove City and Sprout Tower completely because I wanted to get over the early-game stuff as fast as I could.
I originally planned (in my opinion) a funny joke where Elm calls about how he was robbed and YTWC returns to tell the police the name of his rival. YTWC would tell his name is Killjoy, and then there would be “WANTED KILLJOY” posters everywhere. But since I wanted to move faster, I totally skipped this and only included the battle against rival. His name was, however, mentioned later in part 10 by Bazooka when Jonny asks who he is.
But back to this memo: Sprout Tower was terrorized by Bazooka, since I was afraid of using Rocky because of his 4x weakness against grass. Later in the tower I tried to use Rocky against the Bellsprout and I was positively surprised by how he still dominated the battles (he OHKO’d them all with Rock Throw). I guess Bellsprout are really that weak, but that really bit me back when I thought Rocky would be fine while battling against that certain Wooper later.
The gym battle is mentioned really briefly as “Rocky vs Pidgeotto”, but there was more of it I can still remember. Rocky was over level 10, and since I of course had no badges, as a traded Pokémon he disobeyed me during the gym match. I managed eventually beat Falkner while Rocky was disobedient, but I changed that in the comic just to “don’t eat it Rocky, you’ll get salmonella or something”. Rocky eating other Pokémon was funny imo, and I included that trait in the epilogue when he spits a slimy Rattata to YTWC’s hands.
Even while this was really early in the development of this comic, I already had made the decision to make a connection between Bazooka and the Kimono girls, which can be seen as the change in Kimono girl’s dialogue I wrote here. Originally, she was talking about the mystery egg, not your starter or any other Pokémon. But because I ditched the mystery egg and boxed it for the eternity, I changed her dialogue for Bazooka.
The first two deaths are also mentioned here: Rocky the Onix was killed by Wooper’s Water Gun, and Spark the Spearow by Ekans’ Bite. Now I’m sure you guys can’t even remember who the hell Spark was, and I understand why. If I recall correctly, he appeared in six panels, including the panel where YTWC is holding his dead body. He did nothing, but his death was important impact to YTWC’s character, as that’s the reason why he started to hate Team Rocket in first place (I never mentioned that straight in the comic, but it can be seen when YTWC finds out that TR is behind the events of Lake of Rage and he recalls Jonny to his ball, afraid that he might end up like Spark).
Writing about these behind of scenes-like things is fun, and I might do more of these if you like. That was just the first piece of my memos, I have much more of these.
First Kanto memo, hell yeah! I’ve finally got to the point where instead of some really obscure scribbling there’s some good information! No, I’m not kidding. The whole first side is all about the captures, mentioning even all random captures (Pokémon who I didn’t end up using in this run), evolutions and other events - in the order they happened! I’m glad I did that, because that really helped me when I was writing the Kanto in comic. Well, this memo has the events from the beginning of Kanto to Blaine, which is a lot of stuff, but this still manages to give good amount of information about the gym battles etc.
Okay, now I gotta say first that I originally went in Kanto with the whole Johto team with me, but by the time I arrived there I had decided to ditch them (excluding Bazooka). This memo says I put Bel and Jonny to Day-Care, while Keira and Chris were boxed. Later I switched them: the ones from Day-Care to box and vice versa. That’s why they’ve leveled up from the levels they had in the end of Johto. While my memo says I had Keira with me for some time in the beginning of Kanto, that’s because I needed a flier in my team. When I caught someone who could fly, Keira was boxed.
About some of the random captures: there’s a female Houndour named Rosu and a female Haunter named Nara who were going to be in my team at first. They both ended up being boxed before I used them for anything, though. The reason was because I had Bazooka (=no need for another fire type) and I’ve never been that fond with ghost types for some reason…so officially the first Kanto team member is Mark, who I got while doing the Power Plant outage mission.
First side of memo have short mentions of Bazooka being used against Route 11’s Snorlax and Articuno. Neither was shown in the comic.
Ocario was caught from Fuchsia City by Headbutting a tree in there (Taichi did the Headbutting), but in the comic, I rewrote that to happen in Viridian Forest, like Hachiken’s death. Little bit about Ocario’s name: it’s a corruption of a Spanish word Oracion. That’s also the name of a beautiful melody used in tenth Pokémon movie, which I also happened to listen earlier that day when I caught Ocario, hence the name.
Even while this memo have the order of evolutions (Mark -> Ocario -> Taichi -> Thor) I’m just a lazy piece of shit who doesn’t bother to check these kind things while planning the comic and end up remembering it wrong. Originally Taichi’s evolution was going to happen after YTWC decides to battle Kanto gym leaders, after Thor’s evolution: so, he was going to have more time to develop as a character. But around the time I started the Kanto in comic, I checked these memos and noticed it wouldn’t be possible if I wanted to stay true to the original gameplay at this aspect. So I had to fit the whole development of Taichi’s character before Thor evolved, making it little bit rushed, but considering how fast I could adapt everything together and making it to work, I think I did pretty good job with that. That’s the only thing in whole Kanto arc where I had to improvise, while there was a lot improvising in Johto.
Second side of memo…we have little bit of training: Mark’s training took place on Route 21, Ocario’s on Route 17 & 18, Taichi was also training on Route 18 (against Grimers - which of course led to the whole Grimer thing in comic) and Thor seemingly battled against Fishermen by using Thunder. Why I didn’t train them with other trainers? Because I battled them all with Bazooka, that’s why. I traveled the whole Kanto with Bazooka being the only who could battle against those, so I had to train others with wild Pokémon.
The final rival battle in Mt. Moon took place before I started challenging the gyms: but that was changed because it would be better in story-wise if YTWC first went to Pewter gym, then travel through Mount Moon and meet the rival there while on his way to Cerulean. Yeah, if you didn’t notice, I battled the gym leaders in the order you have to in original Kanto games (which is a good decision since their levels get higher in that order as well). The rival battle’s memo is really confusing, as I can’t tell what happened to Mark while battling against Feraligatr. All I can remember that Feraligatr almost got him and I used Taichi to finish it instead. That battle was one big “Taichi is a hero” moment.
Can’t read the gym memos? Don’t worry, because even I have hard time to figure out what there is. For some reason I suddenly decided to write them all IN CAPS SO YOU CAN ACTUALLY READ THEM BECAUSE MY USUAL HANDWRITING IS TERRIBLE. Fun fact: I battled most of the leaders same day. I think I made it to Fuchsia before having a break. Anyway, while it’s not here, the Suicune battle took place before Blaine if I recall correctly. It’s still on the next memo. I don’t know why.
Okay, there’s this little message you can get by talking to your Pokémon in Saffron gym I wrote here: [Pokémon] is very composed and sure of itself. This was for Taichi, because
1) I was originally going to show Saffron gym battle
2) Taichi was originally going to be silent like Bel, and communicating with emoticons.
Yes, Taichi changed drastically from what I planned at first, and good he did. He would’ve been really boring and making heart emoticons when with Ocario. No kidding, those two were going to be a couple originally. But since I made two couples in Johto already (FYI, Jonny and Keira weren’t supposed to end together but they did in the end because I’m one big romantic asshole) they’re just special friends.
The critical moment in Fuchsia gym against that Venusaur isn’t mentioned: I remembered it. That Venusaur used some sort of poison move (Sludge Bomb or what - I don’t know), critical hit and took over half of Ocario’s HP. Switched to Taichi, Psychic’d that big frog ass and everything was okay. Of course I had to make some damn cute Taichi/Ocario moment in the comic with this, can’t be helped.
Cinnabar gym, oh joy. That gym was one prime example how damn scary gym leaders can be. Sunny Day, a 140 base power fire type move + stab, and it was a critical hit. Too bad for Thor, he was great and personally one of the best characters I made.
Phew, over halfway done with writing about these memos. Only two more: Suicune battle, Blue and Red and then it’s done.
Okay, here’s the second memo from my SoulSilver nuzlocke. Again, it’s relatively small paper full of scribbles which are not that useful…and some of they are upside down/really small side notes, because I didn’t care about the readability back then. I still regret for not writing clearly and in good order.
Anyway, this holds the events from Azalea Town to Ice Path/Blackthorn City. It really doesn’t have anything special from Blackthorn City expect the mention of a Magikarp I caught there and the list of my team (Bazooka, Jonny, Bel, Chris and Keira).
But let’s start from the events of Azalea and the gym there. Gym battle is again just someone vs someone, no attacks or anything. But what I find interesting is how it mentions that I used Bazooka AND Corey against Bugsy’s Scyther. If and if my memory serves me right, Bazooka had some problems with Scyther so I switched him to newly-evolved Corey (he evolved earlier in the gym). Corey then probably Thundershocked Scyther to death. And Kyle had his moment with Kakuna and Metapod, but again, I just showed the battle against gym leader’s main Pokémon in the comic with one panel montage.
Speaking of Kyle, he really was neglected for someone who was fairly useful and long in the team. In the comic, aside from beating the Team Rocket members in Slowpoke Well, all you see him to do is just kicking rival’s Gastly’s ass, confusing Whitney’s Miltank, evolving and then getting killed by Morty’s Gengar. I wish he would have done more than that, as I designed him as ninja. He was cool dude, and his legacy will live on.
Here’s the first time you can see the name of my rival, Killjoy. The battle against him in Azalea is again someone vs someone, but there’s something I didn’t show in the comic again: Kyle was originally used against his Zubat. Kyle was, however, confused by it and was hitting himself until I switched to Bazooka.
There’s absolutely no mention how the battle against Whitney went, but since it was really early in the comic, I could remember the battle enough well: Bazooka Smoke Screened Miltank’s accuracy down, then Kyle confused it, Larry Disabled Milk Drink and finally, Corey kicked her cow ass with Thundershock. That’s the short version, since the battle actually lasted maybe more than ten minutes in the game. Still, the outcome was same: my strategy worked and no one died against that nightmare fuel.
This is also where I mention all Pokémon where they were caught and their gender as well. In the sequel, I also wrote their natures and characteristics down just in case. But here, there’s only the Pokémon, where it was caught, their nickname and gender. On the first side of paper, you can find the final Johto team members being caught: Jonny from National Park, Bel from Route 42 and Chris from Route 39. I don’t know if you can see it, but originally I misspelled his name as Crish. That wasn’t fixed in the game until after Bel evolved into Gyarados and me gaining the ability to Surf again (I’ll explain the Cianwood thing later).
Oh, the Ecruteak tragedy. The worst thing that happened to me in this nuzlocke: three deaths in one battle, all by one Pokémon. After that, I became really wary and the amount and frequency of deaths dropped greatly, but for that it was needed to lose my best ‘mons ever. Corey, I still remember how I was dreaming you to evolve into Ampharos. Kyle, you were too cool to die. Larry, you had the potential to become great, but alas, your life ended before you could show the full potential. But where’s me mention of this event in this memo? I bet you can’t find it, since it’s just a small side note between other things. Here it is:
Really small and even upside down, nothing less for the biggest tragedy in this nuzlocke. I feel bad for not paying enough attention to write properly. But really, I was devastated after that battle, and I almost lost my inspiration to continue.
I originally deposit Bel to Day-Care, but I withdrew her from there after Ecruteak. I traveled to Olivine City where I caught higher leveled Magikarp, Raya (she was level 19, while Bel was just 16), who replaced Bel in the team. Bel was boxed, and she joined my team again after Raya’s death on my way to Cianwood. Since I had no Surfer, I was stuck in Cianwood, and all I could do was battle those Krabby and Corsola you could fish from the sea. As you can guess, that took a good while, but it paid off when Bel finally evolved into Gyarados and thus was able to Surf.
I’m not sure if you can see it, but on the other side of memos, there’s erased some text and overwritten by something else. There originally was a text “RIP Jonny”. Yep. Jonny originally died in the game while I was in Cianwood, training for the gym battle. Let me explain the whole situation:
So Jonny died against a trainer’s Dunsparce, who used Rollout on him. I returned to the Poké Center in Cianwood and like all Pokémon who had died, I released him. Then I returned to training my team and faced two trainers in a double battle. They had Magmar, and…Electabuzz. Okay. There was Bazooka, Bel and Chris in my team. Since Bel and Bazooka were the only useful ones, I was pretty guaranteed to be doomed in this battle, so I ragequitted before the battle could start. I started again from the last save point, which was…before Jonny died, so he was still alive and in my team. I was thinking for a while what I should do, but since the battle against that Dunsparce hadn’t happened yet…I continued the game like nothing had happened. And so Jonny died, but is still alive. Yes, I shall go to nuzlocke hell someday.
Gym battle against Chuck was a progress, at least in my memos. There was for the first time some sort of mention what moves my Pokémon used (Jonny used Pluck on Primeape, and Bel used Dragon Rage on Poliwrath). But still no moves for the opponents, so…the comic version was really one-sided battle again. The memo has also nothing for the battle against Prycen, so that was totally skipped in the comic. I can only remember using Bazooka and Bel, but against who, my memory fails to remember.
There’s a short mention of Ina the Natu I caught from Ruins of Alp. I was planning at first to use her in my team, but I ended up boxing her before I used her for anything. My team had enough flying types already.
The whole Radio Tower arc, which took…3 parts? No, it was four parts in the comic, and in my memos there is just what Pokémon I had in my team. Nothing else. I had to use my crappy memory to remember that Jonny had a close call with one exploding Koffing and how Bazooka had hard time with Archer’s Houndoom.
I like to tell you now when I remember this that I would’ve been doomed many times in Johto without Bel. She was probably the reason why there wasn’t that many deaths after Ecruteak. She was my powerhouse, she destroyed everything on her path. There was many times, like the Radio Tower or the battle against Lugia, where someone would have most certainly died if I would not had her with me. I remember when in the first Q&A someone asked who is stronger, Bazooka or Jonny, and they both said Bel is the strongest. And someone then acted surprised by hearing this.
Finally, we’re at Blackthorn. My memos don’t say much about it here, expect that when listing the members of team, there’s written “Blast Burn” next to Bazooka. I’m not sure when I decided how important this whole Blast Burn thing would be, but I most certainly made intentionally in part 5 Bazooka interested when YTWC was talking about what happened to his brother.
Okay, let’s talk little bit about Bazooka’s character. At first he was with YTWC just for the mission of Kimono girls looking for the one who can talk with Pokémon and reassure Lugia about the kindness of humans. He was maybe little bit indifferent at first towards YTWC, seen as how he’s just scratching himself while YTWC is catching his first Pokémon or when he asks Bazooka’s help in Ilex Forest. Bazooka even later admitted that he found YTWC amusing by how he treated Pokémon like people and thought he’s completely idiot. But after seeing how YTWC has deeper, sadder side by how he handled the deaths of Rocky and Spark, and then finally hearing about his past, Bazooka started actually care about him. And this eventually lead to the moment where Bazooka, enraged, leaps at Morty’s Gengar and finally reaches the same wavelength with YTWC, which allows the latter to finally understand Pokémon language.
Okay, I really don’t have much else to say about this memo. Let’s see if I’ll write something about the rest of them.
Okay. The fact is that YTWC/Bazooka is my favorite brotp from this nuzlocke. Sorry Thor/Mark. I just really like these two.
These guys share a bond that no one else have in this story: they can sleep like this (and they do, couple times during the story actually) and they understand each other. I just can’t explain it, it’s just something so cool and I can’t believe I’ve created something like it. BTW, Bazooka sleeps just like me.
As a completely unrelated note, I’m having this personal challenge to not use (almost) any black while coloring my works right now. That’s because I often used to overuse black and sometimes even ruined some my works with it. In this work, I didn’t use black at all. All darker colors are done either with blue or brown.
And here it is, the last memo from the Johto part of my SoulSilver nuzlocke. Yes, the whole Johto was only three pieces of paper in my memos. First memo covers parts 1-3 (and the beginning of part 4), second memo eventually became parts 4-24 (holy shit, 20 parts?!) and this final Johto memo have the events for parts 25-37, from Blackthorn to Hall of Fame. There’s more detailed battles as all of them are at least someone vs someone, usually mentioning what attacks I used and sometimes even what my opponent used. That’s some progress compared to earlier memos. Lugia battle and Bazooka vs Charizard have some actual battle log, but I’ll get to them later.
First, before I start talking about this memo, I’d like to say one thing about what happened to me in Radio Tower arc in the game which I forgot to say last time. When I was rescuing the real station manager from the basement of Goldenrod Department Store, I got a phone call from Irwin, that Juggler from Route 35. He said how he heard about me beating Team Rocket in Goldenrod and congratulated me for that. Well, the thing is, I was at the moment in middle of this mission, and I still had to beat Archer before Team Rocket would be gone for good. How Irwin did that, it freaks me out and is really confusing.
Now, to the memo: this third memo begins from the dialogue of Kimono girl in Ice Path. You might have noticed that I used their in-game dialogue in their previous appearances (I wrote down their dialogues), but this one was unused in the comic. The reason is simple: in the game, this Kimono girl is stuck in ice, but I changed that to her losing her sandal in the comic. Speaking of which, part 24 (where this happens) is one of my personal favorite parts from this nuzlocke overall, I’m really satisfied how I wrote it and how it came out. The icy backgrounds still looks nice to me. If there were one thing I would like to change, well, that’s the way how I drew YTWC and Jonny after evolving. They look terrible.
The battle against Clair was quite a catfight: I didn’t realize it while playing, but I found out afterhand how Clair’s all Pokémon in the first match against her are females. And I only used females as well. I dunno, I find that funny since that must be the only battle in this nuzlocke where that happens, mainly because I never had many females in my team (I had quite bad luck with them: Bel, Raya, Keira and Ocario are the only ones). Gender ratios must have something to do with it, but really, I rarely have females in my teams in other games. Only my Leafgreen have more females than males in my team, as three of four members are females (Venusaur, Raichu and Absol, Dragonite being the only male).
Then the battles against Kimono girls. Bazooka was the first in my team, so he was used the most against the Eeveelutions. Chris got his first major battle here when he battled against Umbreon, but his major battle debut in the comic wasn’t until in Victory Road where he faced Killjoy’s Kadabra. Chris sure was underused compared to the time he was in the team. He was never used against gym leaders, and during the Radio Tower he was mainly useless against all those poison types there. Chris wasn’t really powerful, but he was still important addition to my team. As I had killed so many good ‘mon, it was good to have even little bit useful Pokémon in my team. Chris had relatively good and strong movepool (Hyper Beam and Focus Blast) which dealt decent amount of damage even with his poor stats. I’ve got some praise for using a Ledian in my team, but that’s not the first time I have done so: in Silver, my first Pokémon game ever, I also had a Ledian in my team. It was named after my brother (even though it was female). It then became an inside joke when I started naming every Ledyba and Ledian I caught after him. Even Chris, his name comes from the English version of my bro’s middle name. So, you can say that Ledyba line have special place in my heart.
But let’s move forward. Let’s talk about the Lugia battle and what I did wrong there. I was originally going to train my team little bit before facing Lugia by going to Victory Road, but…well, in the game, when the Lugia mission is on, Lyra (or Ethan, depends on in which gender you play) is blocking the way to Kanto in New Bark Town. The second best training place was Ice Path, where I trained my team before Clair, but guess what, I was already sick of that place and the slow training in there, so I pretty much “screw this, I’m battling Lugia now”. First mistake. The second mistake was to trying to battle Lugia with Bazooka. If you look the memo closely, you can find the actual battle log from that battle (first time in this nuzlocke when there’s actually some battle log!). So, Bazooka used first Shadow Claw (physical attack from a special attacker…*sigh*), then Lugia did Aeroblast - which took more than half of Bazooka’s HP. At this moment I started panicking a little, and switched him to Bel: which was the best decision I made after all those mistakes, since Lugia’s next attack was Hydro Pump. Then I Ice Fanged Lugia to death. Everyone survived and lived happily after.
I remember some people asking did I get the Extremespeed Dratini. Well, the thing is, I thought you can’t get it without catching Lugia, so I just fished (another) Magikarp from Dragon’s Den. It wasn’t until the comic reached this point when someone told me that you actually could get it without catching Lugia and before that. Well. What’s done is done, let’s move on.
Here’s the first time I ever mention the team, their levels and movesets: I only did that again before facing Red. The movesets are:
Bazooka: Shadow Claw, Earthquake, Flamethrower and Blast Burn (and that never changed during the rest of this nuzlocke)
Bel: Dragon Dance, Ice Fang, Waterfall and Strength
Jonny: Fly, Sand attack, Pluck and Tailwind (Pidgeot is a good Pokémon, but it’s movepool sucks)
Chris: Hyper Beam, Hidden Power (grass), Silver Wind and Focus Blast
Keira: Cross Poison, Bite, Fly and Confuse Ray
But anyway, you can see that I grinded the team from around level 41-42 to level 50. It sure was hard, but paid off during Elite Four.
The other side of memo is solely the Elite Four battles and Lance. Mainly just someone vs someone, but there’s couple mentions of enemies attacks: Koga’s Crobat used Double Team, which was really annoying as Bel’s attacks missed three times in row. Bruno’s Machamp caused me almost a heart attack, but fortunately, it only did Revenge (even while it knew a rock type attack) and Jonny OHKO’d it with Fly. Bel was first when the battle against Bruno started because I remembered from my LeafGreen how he used Onix first. But he doesn’t in Johto remakes, so his first was Hitmontop instead. Well, one Dragon Dance and boom, first Hitmon was down. I love Bel so much.
If you look the memo, it says that I used Bel’s Dragon Dance five times and them totally OHKO’d everything, even those Dragonite. Her Ice Fang missed only once against one of Dragonite, but it didn’t do anything worth to mention. As I said back when I published part 36 (aka Lance battle), Bel could have easily beat Lance on her own. But when Lance was about to send his last Pokémon, Charizard, I sudden had this type of realization: “Oh god. Oh god. That’s his last Pokémon. And I made it this far without losing anyone. Goddammit, I’m gonna make it! Let’s do it in a cool way and use Bazooka against that motherfucking lizard!” And we all know how that ended. I thought Bazooka’s last Shadow Claw could finish Charizard, but it didn’t. Then Charizard attacked, and I made quick calculations judging by how much damage that lizard dealt earlier on Bazooka, and my result was that he was not gonna make it. I didn’t want to see Bazooka dying, so I closed my eyes and waited. And waited. I think I waited pretty long, until I looked back to the screen of my DS again. And I couldn’t believe my eyes. It took me a moment to fully understand that Bazooka was still standing in there, with 4 HP left. That thing. That thing just refused to die. Because we were in the middle of the most important match so far, and Bazooka couldn’t die before Charizard would be down. So we continued. And won. By using Blast Burn. And I think that was the best thing ever. Part 37, where this all happened, is probably the best thing I ever made in this nuzlocke. Honestly. When the battle was over in the game, I decided I would do a video of it, and use my favorite Pokémon anime soundtrack ever in it. I decided this all back in 2011, almost two years before I actually would do that. Originally I was about to use different music for the flashback, but since Notepad’s Freddy’s Blue already used it, and few weeks before making part 37 I watched Wolf’s Rain anime where was this great piece, I decided to use it instead.
Ehh…I think that’s all I got to say. Next, there is Kanto memos.