Eldritch Tamers Go!

Welcome to your campaign!
They aren't all little and cute...

The coastal town of Sandpoint has faced few trials and
dangers over the course of its forty-two year history,
but unfortunately, that is all about to change.
Unknown to the town’s founders, they chose to build
their community over the ruins of an ancient
stronghold once used as laboratory and prison,
a place where horrific experiments and unholy
explorations into what divides man from monster
took place. These are the Catacombs of Wrath, one of
several such sites used by Pokémon Master Alaznist’s
apprentices during Thassilon’s height, a place where
arcanists explored and perfected the stolen arts
of lifeshaping and fleshwarping. When Thassilon fell,
these catacombs went dormant, but the one buried
under Sandpoint was not fated to stay that way.

Redux: Part 1

Nearly twenty years after his adventures with Ash Ketchem, Brock, Pokemon Doctor, Pokemon Breeder, and former Gym leader has settled down in Sandpoint Town, having finally convinced one of the many Jennys to become his wife. Now 35 years old, Brock has a thriving Pokemon Nursery, where he is aided by his twins Silas and Petra, while his wife is out fighting crime.

This is not Brock’s story however. Rather, it is the story of his offspring.

It was the day of the twins, Silas and Petra’s tenth birthday. A large party had been thrown for them by Brock and Jenny, culminating in the gift of their very first pokemon. Being the offspring of a famed Pokemon Breeder has its advantages — in this case the gift of a pair of highly unique Eevees housed in ornate black-and-gold luxury balls. Silas received Tamao, a shiny eevee who had learned some powerful psychic attacks from its Munna father, while Petra received Sally, an adorable and sassy eevee who had learned healing powers from her Komala father. Ecstatic at the gift, the kids played with their new eevees long into the night before passing out.

The next morning, they were awakened by Jenny who presented them with the other half of their birthday gifts, their official Pokemon Handler’s Licenses, which would allow them to legally purchase pokeballs, challenge Pokemon Gyms, and to participate in Pokemon League sanctioned events. Jenny had to quickly scarf down her breakfast and run off to work, leaving Brock to pack Silas’ and Petra’s backpacks — a packed lunch box, a change of clothes, five pokeballs, and a potion for each of them.

With pokemon and licenses in hand, the kids ran out to start their very first pokemon adventure. The two debated for some time on where to go hunting first — Silas wanted to check out the Joltick Wood, or possibly head strait to challenge the gym in the nearby town of Cougar Creek, while Petra said they should go down to the beach to look for water pokemon.

Petra’s arguments won out, so they headed north out of town down to the public beach. This early on an autumn morning, the gym was not very crowded. A couple of tubers played down by the water, while one fisherman stood a ways off with a line in the water.

Petra made a bee-line for the fisherman to ask if she could try her hand. As she approached, the man gave a mighty pull on the line and reeled in a very large magikarp. With a gleam in his eye, he turned to Petra and shouted “Magikarp Go!” Of course, the ridiculous fish only knew Splash, so Petra’s first trainer battle was over quite quickly. Laughing, the man released the fish back into the water and handed Petra his rod.

Silas, meanwhile, had wandered down to the water, rolled up his pants-legs, and was wading and splashing with Tamao. Suddenly, he cried out in pain and kicked his foot in the air, launching the krabby that had pinched him out onto the sand. With an angry clacking of pincers, it scuttled towards him, blowing bubbles.

“Tamao, use Yawn!”

Well, that didn’t take long. The krabby was soon sleeping peacefully in a pokeball.

Petra, running over to watch, stubbed her toe on something just beneath the sand and tripped. Scrambling to her feet, she spun around to see a wild shellder (these pokemon are hazardous). Sally was soon dripping from multiple water-gun attacks, but the shellder was caught.

Excited by their new pokemon, S & P moved further up the beach to eat their lunches, then decided to head to the Joltik Woods to see what they could catch there. As they turned to leave, they were confronted by a young boy wearing an innertube. The boy, Jude, lived near them and was clearly too young to be a licensed pokemon handler, but, had an oddly determined look on his face.

“You’ve got pokeballs! That means you can’t refuse a challenge,” he told Silas. “Tentacool go!”

While it was not absolutely true that a licensed handler could not refuse a challenge, Silas was eager to try out a trainer battle, even if only against a kid with a family pet cum secondary flotation device. A single critical hit with Tamao’s covet attack dropped the poor jellyfish in one blow. Jude did not seem at all bothered by his quick defeat however.

“Thanks!” he said excitedly, then tossing a small silver bell to Silas, “here, I found this down by the water this morning.”

Petra gave Silas a spare ribbon from Sally and he tied the soothing bell around Tamao’s neck. The two then waved goodbye to the boy and ran through town, eager to check out the woods.

A couple hours later, they were wandering through the Joltick Woods in the shadow of Murkrow Roost Mountain, their eevees out and walking beside them, when a massive murmuration of starly swooped and danced across the sky before alighting on every possible tree-branch.

Sally shuddered in anticipation at the massive flock, but Petra’s eyes lit up. “Let’s catch some! Sally, Growl attack!” Silas was clearly on the same wavelength as he almost simultaneously shouted “Tamao, use Synchronoise!”

The pair of eevees set off a near-deafening cacophony, which definitely caught the bird pokemons’ attention. Ten starlies broke off from the group and dive-bombed them.

Sally was badly injured and Tamao was nearly overwhelmed. The two children recalled their eevees into their pokeballs and ran, hard. Covering their heads with the arms and dodging between trees to avoid the vicious pecking of the birds.

They ran, and ran, and ran, without thought of distance or direction. Anything to get away from the enraged flock. Finally they burst into a clearing and fell down on the grass, gasping for air. The birds having left off the pursuit some time ago.

After catching their breath, S & P stood up and looked around. It was getting late already, and they realized that they had no idea where they were. “Maybe we should just stay here,” Petra suggested.

In the middle of the clearing was a large moss-covered stone. Petra released Sally from her ball and the eevee immediately began sniffing around the rock excitedly, then climbed up on top and lay down to rest on the soft moss. Silas followed suit, and soon they released all four pokemon to rest and play around the rock. The children ate what was left of their lunches and looked up at the evening sky, trying to get their bearings from the angle of the setting sun.

As they rested and recovered, Silas thought he spotted a pokeball lying in the grass. Moving to pick it up, he found, instead a strange mushroom-like pokemon. “Eevee go!” he called, pulling out a pokeball to catch this new creature. The tired eevee let out a Yawn, which was plenty to catch the foongus.

Then Tamao started glowing a strange green color. The mossy rock began glowing as well. Everyone scattered, afraid of what might be happening. Then, before their very eyes, Tamao evolved into a Leafeon!

“That rocks an evolution stone!” Petra said. Then, quickly recalled Sally into her pokeball in case she might start to change as well.

Moments later, the metamorphosis was complete. Silas was thoroughly excited at this sudden turn of events with his Tamao. “Come on,” he said pointing at the setting sun, “we should try to get home before its completely dark. We just have to head towards the sun.” They jogged through the woods until it was quite dark before finally exiting on the western end. With the old lighthouse now in sight, they were easily able to make it to the road and follow it back to Sandpoint.

As they walked, they passed a large pine tree, unusually laden with pinecones for the season. “Not pine cones,” Silas said, “those are Pineco!” And indeed they were. S & P both managed to catch one before heading home to sleep.

Redux: Part 2

The next morning Silas and Petra again rose early to find their backpacks packed for them, loaded with lunch and three new pokeballs each. They ate breakfast quickly, said goodbye to Brock and Jenny and headed out to go pokemon hunting. This time they set their sights on nearby Murkrow Mountain, a popular hiking and camping spot known to be home to many rock-type pokemon.

On their way out of town, they were stopped by a leather-clad Hooligan who demanded that they hand over their unused pokeballs. Rather than give in to such coercion, S&P sent out Leafeon and Eevee and ended up in a double battle against the roughneck’s male and female nidorans.

It was a long slog of a fight, with Eevee steadily reducing the nidorans’ combat prowess with repeated application of Growl, while Leafeon slowly whittled away their strength with razor leaf — which was not very effective against the poison types. Finally after several minutes of razor-leaf bombardment, the two nidorans passed out. The angry hooligan threw down his wallet and stormed off.

The two kids excitedly divided up the man’s cash and then skipped out of town towards Murkrow Mountain.

As they made their way up the twisting trail to the overlook, they heard a low growl from behind them. Spinning around, Silas spotted a Rockruff. One critical hit from Tamao’s razor leaf later and the poor puppy was dead as a door-nail.

Disheartened by his failure to catch the rockruff, they continued up the mountain until Petra pointed out a small tree that appeared to be moving.

“It’s a SUDOWOODO!” Silas shouted, and Petra started dancing around saying “Sudo-woodo, sudo-woodo, sudo-woodo”.

The tree started dancing around and singing in exactly the same manner.

“IT IS SUDOWOODO!” Petra exclaimed.

“IT IS SUDOWOODO!” the tree responded.

Both kids sent out their Pinecos (because bugs are good against plants, right?) and launched simultaneous tackle attacks on the tree, for basically no effect. The “tree” responded with its own, much harder tackle attack.

“Oh, it’s a Rock type…” Silas suggested.

The Pinecos were swapped for Shellder and Krabby and a barrage of bubbles and water guns were met by a countering barrage of the same. Finally Petra through a ball at the tree, which was deflected. Silas followed up with a ball of his own and caught the…

“Oh, it’s a bonsly it knows Copycat.”

They continued on up the mountain, heading for the overlook. They had gone no more than a dozen paces further when Petra spotted another pokemon, the mountain’s namesake.

She threw a pokeball. It was deflected.

Angrily she sent out Shellder. He was promptly knocked out by the murkrow’s peck attack. Silas came to her aid with Krabby, who was beaten soundly and had to be recalled. Petra’s eevee did not fair much better.

Petra threw another pokeball. The damn bird dodged it.

Finally Silas sent out Leafon who used Yawn to put the murkrow to sleep. After which P finally caught the thing in a ball.

When the reached the overlook, they found a small copse of young trees which had been uprooted and knocked over. Checking the nearest one, they found a sparkling powder lying near the roots which had clearly been gnawed on. Petra scooped up the glittering powder, while Silas tore off the bigger of the roots.

Then they heard a digging noise behind them. They spun around to see a gray and yellow geodude uprooting yet another plant. They walked closer to see what it was doing and it glared at them menacingly. Silas tossed it the piece of root he had taken, which it promptly gobbled up. More flecks of the Bright Powder fell away from its teeth as it used them to grind up the roots.

Silas chucked his second-to-last pokeball at the thing, hitting it square in the forehead. Enraged, the geodude ran at them. S&P ran away following the path down the far side of the mountain, with the geodude in hot pursuit.

As they rounded a switch-back and reached a steeper part of the trail, the geodude threw itself forward and began rolling after them, picking up speed as it careened down the mountain. Afraid of being overrun, Silas sent out his bonsly.

“Bonsly, Copycat it’s rollout!”

The two rock types collided in mid-roll, and went spinning off the trail. Bonsly, at least, was badly injured. Silas recalled his small, rocky tree and threw his last pokeball, this time catching the geodude.

With most of their pokemon thoroughly beaten up, S&P made their way down the far side of the trail and homeward. As they neared the bottom, Silas said “Hey, I think that rock is watching us…”

The rock said, “Hey, I think that rock is watching us…”

Petra tossed her last pokeball at the bonsly and critically caught it on one throw.

Then they went home.

Redux: Part 3

On their third day out since obtaining their handler’s licenses, S&P decided to go a bit farther afield. They went down to the docks, and, using the money they’d taken from the hooligan the previous day, hired a fishing boat to take them out to the island known as the “Dragon’s Punchbowl”. The inactive volcano was known to be a prime nesting ground for all manner of dragon-type pokemon.

The wind was calm that day, and the two mile ride out to the island took close to an hour. As they sailed slowly, Petra got out the fishing rod she had obtained the other day, tossed the line in the water behind them. She soon felt a tug on the line and reeled in a smallish Magikarp, which she easily snagged in one of the balls Brock had packed for them this day.

Her second cast brought in a poliwag, which put up more of a fight, deflecting her first ball. A full-force tackle from her eevee nearly broke the line, and sent the fluffy pokemon tumbling into the water. Luckily the boat was moving slowly enough that P was easily able to haul him back in after capturing the poliwag.

With a flash, the poliwag disappeared. S reminded her that all of the balls were tagged with her trainer license number, and would automatically be teleported to the nearest pokemon center if she exceeded the limit of 6 on-hand pokemon.

When they finally reached the island, P was quite dejected to realize that she had already used up all the balls she had on hand. S suggested that they should stop at a pokemart and buy some extras before heading out again. In the meantime, however, he still had some balls and wanted to explore.

There was nowhere to dock the boat, so their captain dropped anchor in the lagoon and said he’d fish there until they were ready to head back. S&P jumped out of the boat and swam the 10 yards to shore, emerging quite wet onto the beach. The beach sloped steeply up towards the island’s caldera — the so-called “punchbowl” — and was largely empty, save for a single big-eared bat pokemon resting and sunning itself on a rock. Not sure what it was, and not wanting to disturb it, S&P snuck by and headed up to the ridge.

As they climbed the slope, P spotted a blue snake-like creature winding its way down the slope. Silas pulled out his guidebook and started flipping through, trying to figure out what it was. As he did, the pokemon got closer and reared up, ready to attack. As the pokemon drew in a deep breath, S through down the book, cursed his dad for not getting him a proper pokedex, and tossed out Pineco.

“Pineco, Protect, NOW!” The dratini’s dragon rage bounced off the bagworm pokemon’s protective field. S tossed a ball at the dratini, but it deflected it with its tail. “Geodude, go. Use rollout!” The dratini was soon flatted, rolled up, and stuffed in a pokeball — which promptly teleported away.

After an hour of hiking, they finally made it to the lip of the caldera. Down below, they observed a lush circular valley, almost a half-mile across, literally crawling with nesting dragon-pokemon of all kinds.

P started down into the caldera, hoping to steal some eggs. A bagon spotted her. It charged. It looked fierce. She ran.

As she ran past him, Silas stepped in. “Tamao go! Use razorleaf!” This was, of course, not very effective against the dragon-type pokemon. Nor was it any more effective the second time, or the third, as the dragon leered at the leafeon.

Finally S changed it up. “Use Yawn!” The bagon yawned. The dragon launched a devastating headbutt at the leafeon, knocking it out cold, then promptly fell asleep. S tossed his last pokeball, but it bounced harmlessly off the sleeping dragon’s rock-hard head.

S&P ran back to the boat, swam out, and headed back to the mainland.

Once back in Sandpoint Town, they stopped at the pokemon center to heal their pokemon and check out their new catches. S swapped his Pineco for his new Dratini. P swapped Magikarp for her Poliwag.

Then they went home.

Join Team Rocket


Playtest 3 - Session 1

Session 1:
The Swellowtail festival opened with a bang. Five young trainers Petra and Li Bosko (our PCs), along with Jerem, Kiriban, and Tina (NPCs) were recognized for their completion of the Pokemon Licensure exam, being presented with their handler’s licenses and starter pokemon.

Petra, being the daughter of Nurse Joy, was presented with a very special Shiny Eevee in a cherish ball by her mother. Li and the others, lacking such connections, chose his starter from the racks presented by Professor Yew. Li chose the rare Candy and Grass type Cuberry, and was surprised to learn that it had been bred to know the powerful move Thrash.

After the presentation of starters, Nurse Joy and the local breeders released a cloud of bred and re-habilitated wild Taillows into the town. Each trainer (new and old alike) were informed that they could catch one Taillow as part of the festivities (the rest were being released into the wild). Petra’s Eevee used Yawn on the nearest one, allowing for an easy catch.

Li struck out into the town, following the flock, hoping to find a Shiny. After three hours of chasing Taillows around town, searching high and low, he spotted a shiny one perched on the eaves of the old glassworks.

“Cuberry Thrash!”

And just like that it was a dead, shiny taillow. Li gathered some twigs and burned the body, then spent another two hours searching for another shiny. As evening approached, and having skipped lunch, he gave up and went after the nearest taillow he could find. This too ended up dead, torn asunder by a pair of lucky scratch attacks from Cuberry.

As he walked back to the Pokemon Center, the fireworks began. As did the chaos. The sounds of fireworks quickly blended with the sounds of screeching, terrified birds and screaming festival-goers, as dozens of wild purrloins erupted onto the streets — grabbing at taillows and purses with equal fervor.

Li spotted a lone lillipup hiding under a wagon, with three shadowy pokemon bearing down on it. He dove, scooped up the puppy pokemon, and ran for the Pokemon Center with a trio of Sneasels slashing viciously at his back. Luckily his armor kept off the worst of their blows, though he did not escape unscathed. As he neared the PC, he turned kicked the lead Sneasel square in the nose, and dove through the door that Petra held open for him.

Li let the lillipup out of his coat and was about to coax it into a pokeball when he noticed it already had a collar and tags indicating that it belonged to someone named Aldern.

Outside, the town was in a panic. Nurse Joy quickly healed Li and Petra’s pokemon while the two of them watched out the front door. Strait up the road Petra spotted a man in a dark suit release several pig-like pokemon from steel cages. The pigs, four of them, charged up the street, breathing fire and igniting a house not far from the PC. The sneasels, meanwhile, had peeled off to harass some townsfolk down the left-hand road.

With their Pokemon healed, Li and Petra ran out the door. Li immediately peeled off to deal with the quartet of tepigs that were setting the town alight. He sent out Cuberry and commanded it to use Thrash! He then high-tailed it for the town water-tower. Li climbed the water tower, and, lacking any better ideas for how to douse the tepig’s flames, began sawing through the side of the wooden reservoir with his apricorn knife.

Out the door, Petra looked around for held and spotted Officer Jenny. She ran up to Jenny and pointed out the dark man running up the street. Soon the two of them were in hot pursuit.

Cuberry, meanwhile, had thoroughly thrashed two of the tepig, and wounded a third, but not without being seriously injured. Confused and without its trainer, it looked like this might be the end for it, as it faced off against the last two tepig. Li, however, had just finish sawing, his small knife dealing just enough damage that the water-pressure in the tower was able to blast a huge hole in the side, spraying all the nearby houses with water, and sending Li himself flying.

Li crashed onto the roof of a nearby house, rolled off, and landed right next to Cuberry and the Tepigs. “Cuberry, return!” he shouted. The tepigs began to flee from the growing torrent of water blasting out of the tower, but not before Li managed to catch the wounded one in a pokeball. He then began limping, battered and drenched, back towards the pokemon center.

Petra and Officer Jenny continued to chase the dark-suited man. Rounding a corner, they saw a young man hiding in a rain barrel as four poochyenas snapped at him. “Help him, I’ll get the saboteur!” Jenny yelled to Petra.

Petra skidded to a stop and sent out Eevee. While the poochyenas were still distracted attacking the man in the barrel, Eevee put one to sleep with Yawn, then got the others attention with a Tail Whip. Weakened as they were by its tail whip, eevee was able to quickly tackle and KO two of the poochyenas before the third managed to land a serious blow. This last one, though, was just as quickly snagged in a pokeball by Petra.

Petra left the fourth poochyena dozing by the side of the road as she helped the man out of the rain barrel. Just then Officer Jenny returned, panting, to announce that the man in the dark suit had gotten away. Petra and Jenny helped the man, Aldern, back to the PC where he was overjoyed to be reunited with his Lillipup.

Playtest 3 - Session 2

After his rescue, Aldern invited Petra and Li to have dinner with him the next day — but, for now, they were tired.

After a good night’s rest, the two friends met back up at the Pokemon Center. They were not supposed to meet Aldern until 5pm, so they decided to spend the day relaxing at the beach after the trials of the night before. They changed into their bathing suits and walked down to the Sandpoint Beach, where they spent several hours splashing in the water, watching the wingulls fly overhead, and playing with their new pokemon.

As they played, Li spotted what looked like a half-built sandcastle and a plastic shovel left behind by some previous beach-goer. When he approached it, the sand-mound animated and reared up, opening its gigantic sandy maw. Li quickly sent out Cuberry to intercept it, a few scratch attacks and three pokeballs later, and Sandygast had been added to Li’s team.

Later, one of the many wingull that had been wheeling over the sea flew in and landed briefly. Petra sent out Eevee to attack it, but it flew away, squawking angrily. It continued to circle them, but never got close enough for them to catch.

When Li and Petra finally decided to head back to town for lunch, they noticed a shadow pass over them. The wingull was following them, and a large rain-cloud appeared to be massing above it. They sprinted for the Pokemon Center, followed by their own personal raincloud.

They ran into the Pokemon Center, dripping wet, and went to the small cafe to have some lunch. When they had finished eating, it was still raining outside, but only on them. “Wow,” Nurse Joy said when they brought it to her attention, “that is an unusually powerful Rain Dance.”

They waited another fifteen minutes, but the rain had not abated. Li told Petra that he wanted to take on the Glassworks Gym before dinner and decided that he was just going to make a run for it. Saying goodbye to his friend he stepped outside and looked up to see the Wingull perched on the gutters of the Pokemon Center, looking down at him angrily.

“What are you still doing here?!” he asked.

“Wingull, gull wing wingull!” the bird spat back. Li tried his best to understand, but had no idea what the pokemon was saying, so he ran. The wingull took off after him, gliding along and keeping the raincloud just above his head. Finally Li slowed to a walk, resigned to being soaked through and lamenting being out of pokeballs.

Finally Li reached the Glassworks Gym, still being drizzled on by the wingull. The gym was a massive brick building and in full operation that day. A dull red glow emanated from the inside and the rain sizzled when it hit the hot brick edifice. Poking his head in, Li was hit with a wave of heat — huge vats of molten silicate sat over equally massive burners, a metal catwalk bearing the logo of the Pokemon League ran directly over them. He could see eight men and women, dressed head to toe in protective gear, hard at work. “Hello,” he called, “is the gym leader in?”

One of the men set the glass ball he was blowing down back into a furnace and walked over to the door. “Funny,” he remarked, “it wasn’t supposed to rain today.” He stepped out and looked up at the wingull, allowing the rain to cool him. “Leader Tsuto is in his office upstairs, but we’re supposed to challenge you before letting anyone see him.” He stuck his head back in and rang a big bell beside the door, “Break Time!” he yelled, “we’ve got a challenger!”

Meanwhile, as soon as the wingull had left chasing Li, Petra went out of the Pokemon Center and wandered over to the Water Tower that Li had sabotaged the night before. Expecting to find some pokemon inside, she climbed up, squeezed through the hole where the water had busted out, and flipped on her flashlight.

There was nothing.

Then she heard a shrill “piiiiiii” from outside. Looking out, she saw a Pidove had settled onto the rail of the service platform around the tower. “Poochyena, go!” she yelled, throwing a pokeball. Poochyena howled, the Pidove simply growled back and did not move. This went on for a very long time — howl, growl, howl, growl, howl, growl.

Finally fed up with her pooch’s inability to power up, Petra yelled, “Tackle it!” The Pidove was knocked from its perched and bore to the ground by the dog, hurting both of them. Before the pidove could right itself, Petra tossed a pokeball and caught the bird.

Back at the gym, Silas found himself faced with eight adult trainers. The first he’d been talking to explained the rules: “You have to beat each of us, one at a time. If you do so, we’ll let you up to the catwalk to face Leader Tsuto. You ready?” Silas nodded. “Then let’s begin. Sandygast go!”

Silas sent out his own Sandygast in response. His was the faster, and lead off with Absorb. The worker’s sandygast responded likewise. It went back and forth for a bit — absorb, absorb, absorb — but Silas’s sandygast proved stronger.

The next worker sent out a Sandshrew. Silas responded with Cuberry, who immediately used Thrash. A single super-effective Poison Sting from the Sandshrew nearly finished Cuberry, but a second round of thrashing made Silas the winner.

The third worker sent out Numel, who also took a thrashing, but which quickly finished Cuberry off with Ember. Silas’ Tepig came out next and KO’d Numel with Fire Pledge, along with an obligatory “Fight fire with fire,” quip from our hero.

The fourth sent out Machop, which began powering up with Focus Energy. Silas’ tepig got scared and retreated to its pokeball, so Silas sent out Sandygast. When the machop’s only other move, low kick, failed to do anything to Sandygast, the battle’s conclusion was foregone and the fourth worker yielded before Machop could take too bad of a beating.

The next sent out a Sandshrew, which Tepig cleared away with a couple of tackles and some well-timed dodging. Followed by Litwick, which was taken out with a single critical hit from Sandygast’s Astonish. The seventh had a Numel, which was dispatched with similar ease.

The eighth sent out a Skrelp, which reduced Sandygast to a single hit-point with one weather-boosted water gun attack. Li withdrew Sandygast and sent out his only remaining pokemon, the already injured Tepig. Tepig managed to tank the next water gun, barely, then finish off Skrelp with tackle.

The eight workers praised Li’s fighting skills and showed him the stairs up to the catwalk where the official gym match would take place. Li used potions to heal up Tepig and Sandygast and headed up. The heat was unbearable. At the far end of the catwalk, an office door opened and Tsuto, the Glassworks Gym Leader, strode out.

“Welcome,” he said. “Our gym uses standard rules — a three-on-three, the challenger may choose his pokemon first…”

“But I only have two pokemon,” Li replied.

“Then I wish you good luck, you’ll need it…”

“Alright,” Li said, “I choose Sandygast.”

Tsuto sent out Sandshrew in response, who immediately used Sandstorm, whipping up a swirling cloud from the mounds of loose silicate stored in the glassworks, and boosting Sandshrew’s speed. Li’s Sandygast responded with Absorb, dealing a serious blow to Sandshrew and topping off Sandygast’s health from the previous fights. Sandshrew then used rapid spin, which did no damage to Sandygast, but allowed it to move behind him for a Bulldoze. Sandygast retaliated with absorb again, then began to Stockpile, sucking up the billowing sand. Sandshrew spun and unleashed a fury cutter. The two went back and forth, stockpiling and fury cutting, slowly whittling down Sandygast’s hit points as it shored up its defenses. Finally Li laughed triumphantly as Sandygast used swallow, healing itself fully, but didn’t realize that Fury Cutter’s power grew with each successive use. One more hit from Sandshrew wiped Sandygast out completely.

“Tepig go! Use _Fire Pledge!”_ Li yelled, but Tepig’s attack missed and the pokemon was immediately KO’d by Sandshrew’s bulldoze attack.

A worker, who was standing as judge, raised his hand and said “The challenger is out of pokemon, the challenger los…” Before he could finish, the Wingull flew in through an open window and landed right between Li and the Sandshrew. The wingull’s stormcloud followed close behind, drenching everything in the gym and sending huge clouds of steam up from the vats of molten glass. “Wingull!” it said trimphantly.

“It seems that it wants to fight for you,” Tsuto translated.

Li looked astonished, “Ummm…okay. Wingull attack!” The wingull flapped its wings and froze the sandshrew in place with an icy wind.

“Sandshrew is unable to battle,” the judge yelled. Tsuto sent out Numel, which wingull promptly soaked, changing its type to Water and removing its STAB bonus just in time to make numel’s ember practically useless. Li, starting to get a feel for the Wingull’s moves had it use wing attack on the numel, hurting it badly, but numel retaliated with body slam, knocking the wingull out.

“The challenger is out of pokemon,” the judge said again. Tsuto looked at the wingull, “It’s hurt pretty bad, you should use this,” he said, tossing Li an empty pokeball. Li tapped the pokeball to the wingull and officially added it to his party. “Consider that your consolation prize,” Tsuto said.

“What’s does ‘consolation prize’ mean,” Li asked.

“It means you’re not getting a gym badge today,” Tsuto replied. “Now get that pokemon to a Pokemon Center. Come back when you’ve trained up a bit…”

Li gathered up his injured pokemon and headed back to the PC to meet Petra.

Playtest 3 - Session 3

After Li’s failure at the Glassworks Gym, he returned to the pokemon center to heal his team, then he and Petra went to meet Aldern at the White Deerling, a fancy local restaurant. As they approached the restaurant, Aldern met them outside with hearty handshakes and a gift basket piled high with potions and pokeballs by way of thanks. He then lead them in and ordered three of everything for them to share.

Aldern, it seemed, was a big spender.

As they ate, Aldern explained that he had only recently arrived in town after purchasing an old building just south of town known as Foxglove Manor. He had intended to fix the old manor up as his home, but upon purchase he learned that the manor used to be a Pokemon Gym and the deed came with strictures from the Pokemon League requiring that it be operated as such. “You see,” he told them, “I own the place now, so I have to open a gym there, but I don’t know the first thing about pokemon training. Would the two of you perhaps be willing to join me in a hunt tomorrow…I need to find some pokemon strong enough to defend the gym.”

Li and Petra both agreed, and after a pleasant dinner and a good night’s sleep at their homes, met Aldern at the Pokemon Center bright and early the next morning. Aldern was a little late meeting them, but showed up leading a trio of Ponytas that he had purchased from the ‘Way North Stables’ for them to ride, and armed with a pack of Max Repels to ensure that they only caught “strong, gym-worthy pokemon”.

The three set off, riding into the Joltik Woods just outside of town. The searched for hours with little luck, the Repel clearing doing its job, as every pokemon they saw ran away from them.

Finally, around noon, Petra noticed some rustling bushes up ahead. Li sent out Wingull to check it out, but, as usual, as soon as the pokemon had left its ball and rain-storm blew in. As the rain poured down, a very large, wet, and grumpy looking Piloswine stomped out of the bushes. “There’s a good one for you,” Petra remarked.

Aldern sent out his only pokemon, Lillipup, who seemed truly tiny when compared to the massive boar, but was able to quickly weaken the beast with it’s baby-doll eyes. Li’s Wingull soaked the Piloswine and Petra’s Pidove hit it with a gust attack. Enraged, the soaking Piloswine unleashed an icy wind which knocked out all three of their ponyta mounts.

Li switched for Cuberry who hit the piloswine with thrash, aided by Lillipup’s helping hand, while Petra’s poochyena tagged it with a double kick. Despite all their efforts, the piloswine looked largely unharmed, and nearly knocked out Lillipup with a powerful mudslap. Li, feeling they were overmatched, grabbed his pokeballs and ran!

Petra, however, stood her ground, calling out her level 1 Taillow, who easily dodged the boar’s next mudslap and hit it with endeavor, nearly dropping the thing. Lillipup then went on the defensive with another round of babydoll eyes as Petra sent out Eevee who used yawn. The weakened Piloswine charged lillipup and eevee, striking them with a fury attack, but in its weakened state it was unable to defeat them and promptly yawned and fell asleep.

Li returned just in time to see a smug Petra casually toss a pokeball at the powerful, but now peacefully sleeping, piloswine. She handed the pokeball over to Aldern, “This will be great for your gym!” Aldern thanked her profusely, again, then suggested they search a bit more for just one more strong pokemon to get his team started.

About a half-hour later the Repels wore off. Shortly thereafter, Li spotted some Seedots hanging from an Apricorn tree. More interested in the pokeball supplies than the pokemon, he began climbing, only to be subjected to a barrage of bullet seeds. “Grrrr, Tepig go! Fire Pledge!” One critical blast of flame later and the tree, the apricorns, and the seedots were no more.

“Let’s head back,” Petra suggested.

On foot, the way back to Sandpoint Town was much slower than the trip to the woods had been. Just as they were about to leave the woods they found their way blocked by massive spider webs. Li tried to brush them out of the way and was attacked by an entire swarm of Joltiks — seven in all — who blasted the three friends with screeches and thunder waves, creating quite the racket.

Li sent out Wingull who hit the swarm with it’s own icy wind, injuring and slowing them all. Aldern sent out Lillipup who crushed one joltik with a takedown attack. Petra his behind them, screaming about how she hated ticks, as the bug pokemon swarmed closer spinning more webs to keep them from escaping.

Li sent out Tepig, but the pig pokemon’s fire pledge was weakened by wingull’s rainstorm. Aldern’s Lillipup crushed another with take down, but was nearly knocked out by the recoil. The remaining Joltik ganged up on Tepig, lashing out with fury cutter, to little avail. With a deep breath, Aldern commanded Lillipup to take down a third. As Lillipup charged, it began glowing and grew, evolving into Herdier.

Finally Petra sent out her Poochyena to help take down a fourth Joltik. With only three left, all three friends apparently thought the same thing. “Pokeball Go!” they all said, each adding a Joltik to their collections. In the aftermath, Petra found an Oran Berry bush, and Li found a discarded (or lost) TM underneath of it.

Leaving the forest, the hurried back to town and the Pokemon Center.

Playtest 3 - Session 4

It was almost dark when Li, Petra, and Aldern arrived at the Pokemon Center to find Officer Jenny waiting for them. “You three,” she said stopping them at the door. “You all were part of the events the night of the festival. If you have time, I would like to take an official statement from you at the station.” Petra waved a pokeball at her as if to say ’we’re busy’ and officer Jenny stepped aside so they could get to Nurse Joy, “Oh, by all means, heal your pokemon.”

Once the pokemon had been restored, the three of them followed Officer Jenny to the police station. Inside they found a fair number of people already gathered in the waiting room — the town’s resident pokemon palentologist, Professor Yew, her assistant, Cherri, Mayor Deverin, and a lady in the uniform of the Pokemon Rangers. Jenny invited the three friends to have a seat, and turned to those already present.

“These are the ones I told you about,” she said. “Li here helped stop the fires the night of the festival with his quick thinking, though the damage to the water tower will take quite some time to repair, and Petra is the one who spotted the man releasing the wild pokemon into the town.” She motioned to Li first, and asked each of them to explain everything they saw that night, nodding and mm-hmming along, and jotting down details in a notebook.

When Petra had finished, Professor Yew stood up. “Office Jenny, I took the liberty of examining the fallen archway in the graveyard that you mentioned spotting when you were chasing that man. It appears that the key-stone had been deliberately removed. Cherri did some follow-up and it appears that there is no mention of that arch’s construction in the town’s records…”

“Odd,” Jenny remarked, making a note in her book.

“Yeah,” Cherri quipped, “it’s definitely an odd keystone.”

“While I cannot say if it is truly related,” the Ranger broke in, “your description of the pokemon attack on the town is similar to what I’ve been seeing elsewhere in the area. Only a day ago, a farm south of Mosswood was burnt to the ground by a group of Fletchinders, and I’ve witnessed large outbreaks of pokemon elsewhere as well: swarms of Totodile near the limestone caves along the western edge of the Devil’s Platter, Croagunks infesting the Brinestump Marsh, Snubbull in Shank’s Wood, the largest outbreak of Turtwigs I’ve ever seen in the Mosswood, and an unusually large numbers of Cacnea at Thistletop and the other islands off the Nettlewood coast. All of these species are uncommon for the area and all of them have been unusually aggressive, attacking travelers and settlements en-masse.”

“Like the joltik that attacked us today!” Petra exclaimed.

“Oh?” Jenny raised an eyebrow.

Petra, Li, and Aldern quickly explained their encounter with the swarm of joltiks earlier that same day. “Could this keystone be letting the bad guys control wild pokemon somehow?” Petra finished.

As the gathered parties sat speculating, a girl came into the station clutching a note in her hand and looking quite shaken. Li recognized her as ‘Bethany’, their waiter at the restaurant the night before. “Oh, you’re busy I should come back later…”

Jenny put an arm around the girl and guided her to a seat. “What seems to be the trouble?”

Bethany explained that her boss, Ameiko, had not shown up for work that morning, and had not said anything to the staff about being out. When she did not show up for the dinner shift, the head chef called but received no answer, so they sent Bethany to check if she was home sick. When she got to Ameiko’s house, she found the back door ajar, and this note sitting on the kitchen table…

“May I see the letter?” Jenny asked. When Bethany handed it over, Jenny skimmed it her eyes wide, then read it aloud.

Hello, sis!
I hope this letter finds you well, and with some free time on your hands, because we’ve got something of a problem. It’s to do with father. Seems that he might have had something to do with Sandpoint’s recent wild pokémon troubles, and I didn’t want to bring the matter to the authorities because we both know he’d just weasel his way out of it. You’ve got some pull here in town, though. If you can meet me at the Gym at midnight tonight, maybe we can figure out how to make sure he faces the punishment he deserves. Knock twice and then three times more and then once more at the delivery entrance and I’ll let you in.
I don’t have to impress upon you the delicate nature of this request. If news got out, you know these local rubes would assume that you and I were in on the whole thing too, don’t you? They’ve got no honor at all around these parts. I still don’t understand how you can stand to stay here.
Anyway, don’t tell anyone about this. There are other complications as well, ones I’d rather talk to you in person about tonight. Don’t be late.

“Tsuto?” Li exclaimed, “I battled him yesterday. His sandshrew is SUPER strong!”

“I’m going to check it out,” Jenny said. “Thank you all for coming and for your testimonies. Prefessor, Mayor, I’ll let you know as soon as I’ve learned anything more…”

“I’m coming to,” Li said, matter-of-factly.

“Me too!” Petra agreed.

Jenny paused for a minute, then shrugged. “Alright, meet me out front in 2 minutes,” she said, then raced to the back of the station.

The three of them raced to the Glassworks, Li and Petra on their ponytas and Jenny on her motorcycle. They arrived to see light coming from Tsuto’s office window on the second floor.

“I’m going to look,” Li said. Before Jenny or Petra could object he sprinted ahead and began climbing the brick edifice to the window. He just managed to peek in to see three people talking before losing his grip and falling to the ground with a loud thud. There was a rush of activity and a silhouette could be seen looking out the window.

Petra, skirting along the wall, grabbed Li and pulled him into the shadows. “You’ve blown it. We have to get inside, now!” Jenny whispered. She pulled out a pokeball and a large swanna flew out. “Get on,” she said to the two kids, then “Swanna Fly!”

They swooped up to one of the upper windows of the factory floor, which, as usual, were left open for ventilation. “Now go let us in,” Jenny whispered. Li looped a rope over the protruding bit of wrought-iron window-casement, shimmied through the narrow window opening, and rappelled down to the factory floor. As his feet hit the ground, he spotted two people in dark suits with large red “R’s” on the chests sprinting out of Tsuto’s office.

“Now!” Jenny shouted. Li lifted the latch on the front door and Jenny and Petra burst in. He pointed at the running rockets but then Tsuto came out of his office, vaulted over the railing, and landed between them and the fleeing criminals. He pulled a large lever and one of the still-glowing vats of molten glass began to tip over, pouring out, not glass, but a mass of wild Slugmas.

“I’ll take care of Tsuto,” Jenny said to Li and Petra, “get the other two!” She pulled out another pokeball, “Gastly, Mean Look!”

Li and Petra didn’t need any more convincing, they took off running after the Rockets who were heading for a door at the far end of the factory floor. They dodged around tables and tools, leaped over slugmas, and reached the door only a few strides behind the two Team Rocket members.

Behind the door were a flight of stairs leading down, which the longer-legged criminals were racing down, leaping three-to-four steps at a stride. “Woh,” Petra said, slowing and grabbing Li’s shirt from behind, “you could break your neck running on stairs like that.” The two children proceeded more cautiously than the criminals they were chasing, but lost sight of them because of it.

“Ponyta!” Li said, tossing a pokeball, catch them. Ponyta raced ahead of them through the door at the bottom of the stairs, but was suddenly thrown backwards and knocked out. Petra flicked on her flashlight and saw a short, bipedal pokemon with a tall red crest on its head and what-looked like baggy pants around its legs.

“Is it wild?” Petra asked.

Li shrugged, “Sandygast go!” Sandygast exploded out of its pokeball only to be hit instantly with a feint attack from the scrafty, nearly knocking it out. “Sandygast return!” Li said in a panic. He pulled out a knife, ready to take the pokemon on himself, but was blown backwards and nearly broke a rib from the first headbutt. “Go, Joltik! Crosspoison!” The scrafty was quick, and tough, but its feint attack was not nearly so effective on the bug as it had been on the ghost, and a second hit from joltik’s powerful cross poison killed it outright.

Li and Petra stepped through the door into what looked like a mine to feed the factory above, with walls of rough-dug sandstone and loose piles of slag ans silicate scattered about. The tunnel was long and dark, but only ran one way. They flipped on their flashlights and picked up speed, til they came to a fork.

“Ummm, right?” Li asked.

Petra nodded, “I’m following you…”

The took the right branch until they found a wooden door, ajar, in the right-hand wall. Beyond that was a proper hallway, smooth-worked walls and right angles, and old looking. Li and Petra moved cautiously. The hallway forked again, and again they went right into a wider corridor, until they eventually came to a set of large double doors. One door hung open, and beyond they could see a huge, long room.

“Like a gym…” Li said.

A large pool was in the middle of the room, wide and deep enough for swimming, apparently fed by a spring bubbling out of a large, square piece of porous black rock. They saw movement in their light and leaped in to see the Rocket grunt, a woman, about to escape through a far door.

“Hey!” Petra yelled.

“Kids?” The Rocket spun and tossed out a pokeball. “Go home kids. Croagunk,” a froglike pokemon appeared from the ball, “show them the way out…”

“Go Poochyena! Double Kick!”

“Go Joltik! Absorb!”

Neither attack was particularly effective, though neither was Croagunk’s counter. “Two on one?” the Rocket quipped, “hardly fair. Scraggy go!” A fourth pokemon joined the fray, leering at both kids pokemon. The kids’ pokemon attacked again, but Croagunk and Scraggy were too fast, beating both to a stand-still.

“Petra, flying types are strong against fighting,” Li said, and the two kids sent out Wingull and Taillow. Taillow lead with a tailwind and wingull followed up with icy wind, evening the speed differential. The birds dodged the first counter-offensive from the Rocket’s fighting pokemon, then beat them back with another double-blast of icy wind and gust.

Then Croagunk landed a poison sting on wingull and Scraggy tagged taillow with a powerful low kick. Taillow, on its last legs after only one hit, dive-bombed scraggy with endeavor knocking it to only 1 hit point before being downed by a second low kick. Petra’s pidove then joined the fray and finished off both croagunk and scraggy with another gust plus icy wind combo.

“Give up,” Li said.

“No. My partner has already gotten away by now. You kids are tough, if you join Team Rocket, I might be inclined to let you live. Salandit go! Dragon Rage!” Her third pokemon appeared with a flash and dropped wingull with one hit.

“Tepig, Fire Pledge!” Li yelled, as Petra’s pidove attempted another gust attack. The salandit was clearly hurt, and quickly gobbled a berry, then belched, knocking pidove out with its foul breath. Petra responded by sending out Joltik, who webbed the saladit, sticking it to the wall, while Tepig hit it with tackle.

The salandit burned itself free of the webs with ember, but while it was so occupied, Petra’s joltik webbed the Rocket, and Li’s Tepig blasted her with fire pledge. The webs were burned off, but the rocket screamed in agony as most of her hair was as well. “Salandit, kill them!”

Salandit’s dragon rage took out Tepig. But then both salandit and it’s trainer were webbed, as Li sent out his Joltik as well. Both Joltik’s rushed the webbed Salandit and, despite being minimally effective, knocked it out with a combo of absorb and poison sting.

“Hey kids,” the Rocket said from where she was webbed to the wall, “let me go and I’ll trade you one of my pokemon…”

Li looked excited, “Can I have your Salandit?”


Li quickly cut her down. “Thanks kid,” she said, and started running.

“What?!” Li looked honestly shocked.

“Nope! You’re going to jail!” Petra said as her joltik hit the Rocket with another web. Petra had joltik wrap her up tight, then turned to Li. “Help me drag her back to Officer Jenny…”

They dragged the Rocket girl back to the stairs where they met Officer Jenny coming down. Jenny looked quite upset. “Tsuto got away,” she said. “But I’m glad you two had better luck. Good work. Let’s get this one back to the station for questioning.” She called her swanna to fly the prisoner out.


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