Pokemon Smash Or Pass: Sinnoh Edition

Our two humble Pokemon smashers have arrived in Sinnoh, and continue to shamelessly declare each Pokemon’s smashability as they reach the halfway stage. Our Editor-in-Chief Stacey Henley was at one stage winning, but indecisiveness on Pokemon she felt 50/50 over has left our far braver Tabletop Editor Joe Parlock with an 18 smash lead.

Both Stacey and Joe have declared Sinnoh their least favourite region, but will that influence their desire to smash? They’re aiming for at least a 25 percent smash rate, with Stacey currently on a solid 28 percent and Joe on a much safer, or perhaps more embarrassing 32.6 percent.

387 Turtwig

Stacey: Never ever going to pick the first stage of a starter.

Joe: Strong jaw, but still absolutely not. Pass.

388 Grotle

Joe: I think this might be the earliest smash in any generation so far? Either way, Grotle manages to avoid the awkward-teenager phase and just looks like fun. Smash.

Stacey: Interesting, I wondered if I might take an early lead, because I like this scamp’s energy. Also a smash.

389 Torterra

Stacey: Gets a bit much when it evolves though, it’s a pass here.

Joe: Is my Rule of Big going to pull me ahead in Sinnoh too? Torterra is everything good about Grotle, but more. Smash.

390 Chimchar

Joe: I hate this little thing with a passion. Pass.

Stacey: Sinnoh definitely has the worst starters. Also a pass.

391 Monferno

Stacey: No Grotle Effect here. Still a pass.

Joe: This is the most teenager-y of the Sinnoh starters. He’d beg you for Robux and it’d be awful, pass.

392 Infernape

Joe: I hate this entire line. Infernape’s just such a try-hard, pass.

Stacey: No, I see the value here. Not my all-time favourite, but definitely smash-worthy.

393 Piplup

Stacey: A baby penguin. Pass.

Joe: Sinnoh does get out of Babyville eventually, but not here. Pass.

394 Prinplup

Joe: It gives me entitled-Victorian-aristocratic-boy energy. Pass.

Stacey: Also it’s just very ugly. Pass.

395 Empoleon

Stacey: While I see the appeal, it’s just too over-designed and oddly sharp. Passing here.

Joe: Going to surprise everyone and actually pass on Empoleon, specifically because the way his beak juts out over his eyes like a crown weirds me out.

396 Starly

Joe: Tiny bird, and not even as good as Tailow. Pass.

Stacey: Yeah I don’t care for the birds at all really, but Starly is just a little dork. Pass.

397 Staravia

Stacey: However, the line does get better. Staravia sits on my 50/50 line, and I have to start smashing some of them, so it’s a smash here.

Joe: We’re only a handful of Pokemon in and Sinnoh is already wildly overdesigned. These are my least favourite birds so far, big pass.

398 Staraptor

Joe: What is going on with that AFI-ass hair? Pass.

Stacey: I love the emo hair look. Smash me like it’s 2006, baby.

399 Bidoof

Stacey: I mean, obviously not.

Joe: It almost hits the celebrity-smash status of Pikachu, but it’s a beaver. A beaver with offputting teeth and a vacant expression. Pass.

400 Bibarel

Joe: Now this is a beaver I can get into. He has personality, pizazz, and an absolute dump truck. Smash.

Stacey: I knew you were going to smash this, which makes me feel like victory in this game is an impossible task because, obviously again, I’m going to pass.

401 Kricketot

Stacey: Just a lil’ bug dude. Nah. Pass.

Joe: He’s so polite, but it’s a pass.

402 Kricketune

Joe: Kriketune has one of the best cries in the entire series, but I don’t think that’s enough to overcome the everything else going on. Pass.

Stacey: Size matters (whatever your girlfriend tells you, fellas), but I could overlook how teeny this one is because I respect its gentlemanly energy. Smash.

403 Shinx

Stacey: Very cute, but not smash material.

Joe: This feels less cute, and more ‘30-year-old bratty twink’, which is even more socially unacceptable. Pass.

404 Luxio

Joe: If Johto was the land of babies, Sinnoh is the land of the teenagers. Pass, but call me in a few levels.

Stacey: I think you read ‘teenager’ on any Pokemon with a bit of a spiky or sassy attitude. Luxio clears the smash bar and then some.

405 Luxray

Stacey: I think the bulkier, angrier Luxray is a bit of a downgrade, but not enough to dip below that bar. Smash too.

Joe: This one’s spiky and has a sassy attitude, but it’s definitely not a teenager. He’s a smash for sure.

406 Budew

Joe: Nope. Not even going to dignify this with a reason, just pass.

Stacey: Another baby, another pass.

407 Roserade

Stacey: An early contender for Sinnoh’s most smashable? I love this bratty non-binary dominatrix and want them to eviscerate me with their thorns.

Joe: I respect you, and I respect your choice. But Roserade looks like Ellen Degeneres as a Phantom Thief from Persona 5. Pass, but I knew this would be a big win for you.

408 Cranidos

Joe: Wow, I totally forgot Cranidos existed. Pass, this is such a nothing Pokemon.

Stacey: I love Cranidos, mainly from good memories in Pokemon Go, but like Shinx it’s nowhere near smash material.

409 Rampardos

Stacey: This is an over correction from how cute Cranidos is. Hate the skull and the recklessly sharp mouth, so I’m out.

Joe: I love the smug energy, but the skull is a big letdown. Pass.

410 Shieldon

Joe: I know I’ve historically liked a strong brow, but this is ridiculous. Pass.

Stacey: Yeah, while I admire Cranidos, I feel nothing for its cousin. Pass.

411 Bastiodon

Stacey: And then it just gets kinda stupid. Also pass.

Joe: Oh, this one’s an easy smash. He’s serving kind, blue-collar kinda-uncle-but-not-gross-just-go-with-it home from a long day of work at the construction site. Smash for sure.

412 Burmy

Joe: I forgot how much of a visceral reaction I have to Burmy. I hate it so much, it’s disgusting. Pass.

Stacey: I don’t particularly hate it, but there’s nothing smashable here.

413 Wormadam

Stacey: Same story. Another dull entry in the Sinnoh canon.

Joe: I think Stacey’s time to shine might be coming. I’m only mentioning this because the alternative is thinking about Wormadam, something I refuse to do. Pass, let’s move on.

414 Mothim

Joe: After two trips to the Nightmare Factory, Mothim feels like a goddamn supermodel. But it’s still a weird moth-thing, so it’s a pass. Big glow-up, though.

Stacey: Agree with sentences one and three. Two is where we part ways: Mothim, like Butterfree, Beautifly, and Dustox before it, is an easy smash. Guess who just discovered a new thing about themselves?

415 Combee

Stacey: Small and confusing. Don’t get it. Pass.

Joe: I don’t want to mess up their polycule’s dynamic, pass.

416 Vespiquen

Joe: Smash, let’s get that out the way. Take it away, Stacey…

Stacey: Vespiquen is a gorgeous queen who could rip you to pieces. Definitely an acquired taste, but she’s one of Sinnoh’s most exciting and most obvious smashes.

417 Pachirisu

Stacey: What if Pikachu were a squirrel. I wouldn’t smash it, that’s what. Pass.

Joe: Of all the Pika-clones, this one feels most like just self-plagiarism. Pass.

418 Buizel

Joe: A rare base-stage smash that’ll get even better with time. Buizel’s an icon.

Stacey: I don’t see it here, just a little too reedy and eager. However…

419 Floatzel

Stacey: Once Buizel evolves, I see the loveable (and smashable) potential of this line come to life.

Joe: If Floatzel was my pool’s lifeguard, I’d conveniently forget how to swim just so he could save me. Gorgeous Baywatch-looking otter? Sign me up.

420 Cherubi

Joe: It being a berry aside, it’s got the Girafarig problem of not quite knowing what that other head is up to. Is it alive?

Stacey: The second head is less troublesome than the fact it’s just two little cherries and why should I care. Pass.

421 Cherrim

Stacey: Most people think of Overcast Cherrim as the true Cherrim, and it’s true that I would pass if that were the only option. But Sunshine Cherrim has Bellossom energy, so we’re back smashing.

Joe: It’s still just a small plant-child for me, sorry. Pass.

422 Shellos

Joe: Gooey Lapras with rubbish hair, no thanks. Pass.

Stacey: Yeah just a little bit gross this one, isn’t it? Pass.

423 Gastrodon

Stacey: And then it only gets worse. Still a pass.

Joe: If this thing was Lapras-sized, I could almost go for it. I bet it feels great, after all. But as it’s less than a metre tall, it’s just a weird slug-thing with too many eyes. Pass.

424 Ambipom

Joe: I know I said I’d be waiting for Ambipom way back in Johto, but now that we’re here and I’m confronted with it, it’s pretty awful. I hate the fringe, the weirdly swollen hands, the nose… I can’t go through with it, sorry. Pass.

Stacey: Always hated it and always will. An easy pass.

425 Drifloon

Stacey: A balloon and also a child predator. No thanks.

Joe: Shockingly, I don’t want to smash the hot-air balloon ghost. I know, right? Pass.

426 Drifblim

Joe: I still don’t want to smash the hot-air balloon ghost. Pass.

Stacey: If I had to I’d pick this one, but I don’t. Pass.

427 Buneary

Stacey: Not yet. Pass.

Joe: It’s very, very cute, but still a pass.

428 Lopunny

Joe: I’m gay, which oddly feels like good enough reason to pass on Lopunny.

Stacey: I mean, come on. Obviously I’m going to smash Lopunny, or more accurately, she will smash me until there’s nothing left.

429 Mismagius

Stacey: I adore Mismagius almost as much as Lopunny. Hey, maybe I don’t hate Sinnoh. Anyway, smash.

Joe: It’s a dry season, and Mismagius just doesn’t do it for me. Pass.

430 Honchkrow

Joe: Finally, I’m back in the game! Really easy smash on Honchcrow, Mafia-esque aesthetics are so hot, and this is a big ol’ bird to go with it. Perfect, and the easiest smash of Sinnoh so far.

Stacey: It’s just too bulky and weird, and the bird thing doesn’t help. Pass.

431 Glameow

Stacey: Sinnoh taketh away, Sinnoh giveth. It’s a little too scrawny, but Glameow’s glamorously pretentious posture makes it a smash.

Joe: Glameow feels like it’s trying and failing to match Persian’s energy. It’s a poser, and I’m passing.

432 Purugly

Joe: Whoever decided Purugly is ugly is a fool. Not a smash, but I will vigorously defend this queen.

Stacey: I agree that ‘ugly’ doesn’t really fit, but not that it dips below smashable. I like her figure. Smash.

433 Chingling

Stacey: Baby wind chimes. Of course not.

Joe: Have you ever seen one open its mouth? Hard pass, and please never make me look at it again.

434 Stunky

Joe: If its face wasn’t an ass, I’d get it. But its face is an ass, and that’s something we can’t overlook. Pass.

Stacey: Deliberately designed to be the most passable Pokemon in Sinnoh.

435 Skuntank

Stacey: I’ve got to be honest, the smell thing doesn’t put me off. But the overall design is just a bit stupid. Pass.

Joe: Design-wise, Skuntank is a massive improvement on assface, better incorporating those cheeks into the head. I even like the tail being used as the quiff. But the smell thing really does put me off, so it’s a pass.

436 Bronzor

Joe: It’s a manhole cover, which is not something I’ve ever considered smashing and am not going to start now.

Stacey: Yeah quite a few of the Steel-types just leave me wondering ‘how’?

437 Bronzong

Stacey: See above.

Joe: Bronzong doesn’t ring my bell. Pass.

438 Bonsly

Joe: Welcome back to Babyville! Leave your passes with the driver, and we’ll get through this quickly!

Stacey: Oh damn there really are a lot here. Pass.

439 Mime Jr.

Stacey: I mean come on. Also pass.

Joe: A big improvement on Mr. Mime, but it’s a baby. Pass.

440 Happiny

Joe: Pass for both being a baby and that weird Jazzercise hair.

Stacey: Mainly it’s the baby thing. I mean, that’s the real dealbreaker.

441 Chatot

Stacey: Not a baby, but kind of feels like one? Pass.

Joe: Chatot is peak bird design, but not hot. Pass.

442 Spiritomb

Joe: I think this is one of those rare Pokemon I’d smash more out of curiosity than actual desire. I want to know how it works.

Stacey: This is a role reversal, but I usually feel that way but feel nothing for Spiritomb.

443 Gible

Stacey: Whisper it, but I don’t really like this line at all. Pass.

Joe: This line is very overrated and you shouldn’t be afraid to say it, also pass.

444 Gabite

Joe: Gabite is the strongest contender of the line. I like its energy, but there are better things coming so I can still afford to have standards. Pass.

Stacey: Oh good, we all hate this line here. Well, if not hate, then at least we don’t want to smash it. Pass.

445 Garchomp

Stacey: I am free of this line. Pass.

Joe: Overdesigned once again, pass.

446 Munchlax

Joe: You’re dad’s hotter, pass.

Stacey: Back to babies, back to passing.

447 Riolu

Stacey: As above. Again.

Joe: Now departing Babyville, thank you for not smashing.

448 Lucario

Joe: We wouldn’t be self-respecting Pokesmashers if we didn’t go all-in on Lucario. This is the most famously smashable Pokemon this side of Vaporeon, how could we not? Smash.

Stacey: Lucario is not my absolute favourite Pokemon this Gen, but it is objectively the most smashable, so sign me up.

449 Hippopotas

Stacey: Not here though. Gross.

Joe: Like Kriketune, I love the cry. I don’t love the gross eyes sticking out the top. Pass.

450 Hippowdon

Joe: Fine, yes, I’ll smash the big hippo, and I’m proud of it. It’ll kill me, and I’ll die happy.

Stacey: You should not be. A clear pass.

451 Skorupi

Stacey: Had to think harder than I thought I would, but ultimately it’s a pass.

Joe: I totally get where you’re coming from. Also a pass, and I also had to put a disturbing amount of thought into it.

452 Drapion

Joe: Skorupi wore me down, I can’t refuse Drapion. Smash me up, scary scorpion man.

Stacey: This feels like too much of an over-correction on a Pokemon that was almost there. Ya ruined it. Pass.

453 Croagunk

Stacey: Okay I think we’re just being silly now. Pass.

Joe: I smashed Parasect for the stoner energy. I smashed Ludicolo for the stoner energy. I’m smashing Croagunk for the stoner energy.

454 Toxicroak

Joe: Toxicroak feels like it was designed to be hot to someone somewhere, but that person isn’t me. Pass.

Stacey: A huge upgrade on Croagunk but not quite enough. Still a pass.

455 Carnivine

Stacey: Look, I like the plants. I know it’s goofy and not all that safe, but I’m still smashing.

Joe: I’m glad Carnivine got at least one smash, they deserve it. It also means I can pass guilt-free.

456 Finneon

Joe: A pretty fish, but a fish nonetheless. Pass.

Stacey: Very pretty, but just a little small and generic. Pass.

457 Lumineon

Stacey: And lo, those flaws were fixed. Smash.

Joe: Really? I’m not judging, but really? Pass.

458 Mantyke

Joe: Who let this baby out of Babyville? Pass, but we’re coming up to a nice, big run of smashes soon.

Stacey: Dang babies. Pass.

459 Snover

Stacey: As fun as ‘bend over Snover’ would be fun to say, this is a pass.

Joe: I always thought Snover looks like the mascot for a holiday park or something. Pass.

460 Abomasnow

Joe: Here we go, here we go, here we bloody go, time for Smash Central, starting with the actual Abominable Snowman. Easy-peasy smash.

Stacey: Obviously a Joe smash, but I don’t see it here. Pass.

461 Weavile

Stacey: This is more like it. Something compelling and sharp about it. Smash.

Joe: The highlight of this line, Weavile is a sassy, sexy smash.

462 Magnezone

Joe: Rule Of Big also applies to magnets, apparently. I couldn’t quite work out Magneton, but for Magnezone I’m willing to try. Smash.

Stacey: After smashing Magneton, I think I’m safe to pass here.

463 Lickilicky

Stacey: You can’t sign up for a project like this and then pass on Lickilicky. A smash for sure.

Joe: Lickilicky is a total Queen. Maybe a little bit of hard work, but that tongue more than makes up for it. Easy smash.

464 Rhyperior

Joe: Of course this one’s a smash too. Rhydon was hot, Rhyperior’s hotter.

Stacey: No, this is a downgrade from Rhydon, and one that takes it into Pass City.

465 Tangrowth

Stacey: Again, the original was better. Pass.

Joe: Tangrowth just looks comfortable. I want to lie on it and sink into those vines, so it’s a smash with plenty of cuddling after.

466 Electivire

Joe: My second-favourite pokemon after Porygon? And one that I can actually smash? Hell yes, Electivire is perfect. Big, fuzzy, impeccable mutton chops, give me that Sugar Puffs Honey Monster please. Smash smash smash.

Stacey: Losing a lot of ground with this run of ugly, bulky evolutions. Another pass.

467 Magmortar

Stacey: Once again, as above.

Joe: The streak comes to an end with this gross, duck-billed easter-egg-looking, Guy Fieri nightmare. Rule of Big only goes so far, and Magmortar just ain’t it. Pass.

468 Togekiss

Joe: Even if it objectively looks more like an easter egg than Magmortar, Togekiss is a smash.

Stacey: Yeah I’m back in business with Togekiss, a straightforward smash.

469 Yanmega

Stacey: I was tempted by Yanma, but just like Skorupi, this takes the evolution too far and now it’s big and ugly. Pass.

Joe: Aww, he’s not ugly! He’s not a smash because he’s just a massive dragonfly, but ugly is a bit harsh!

470 Leafeon

Joe: The worst Eeveelution by far. Pass.

Stacey: It’s my least favourite overall, but the only Eeveelution I’ve passed on is Jolty because of the spikes everywhere. Leafeon has no spikes, so I have no problems. Smash.

471 Glaceon

Stacey: Less tempting than Leafeon with the chilliness, but still a smash.

Joe: If Norweigan singer Aurora was a Pokemon, it’d be Glaceon. That has no sway on my decision to pass, I just needed to verbalise that thought.

472 Gliscor

Joe: One of the biggest surprises from this whole exercise was discovering our mutual love of Gligar. Gliscor is a better Gligar, with the perfect mix of scariness and raw sex appeal. Easy smash, and I really hope you agree.

Stacey: I disagree that it’s an upgrade of Gligar, but I still easily find Gliscor to be smashable. The eyes and wings aren’t quite as perfect as Gliggy, but that won’t stop me.

473 Mamoswine

Stacey: No. Too big.

Joe: Too big. Yes.

474 Porygon-Z

Joe: This one feels unethical, Porygon-Z clearly isn’t alright. Pass.

Stacey: I think that’s just its mating call. It’s still a little too weird though, so pass it is.

475 Gallade

Stacey: Not as good as Gardevoir, but still a simple smash call here.

Joe: I don’t like the weird disc hips it has going on, pass.

476 Probopass

Joe: I’ll avoid the obvious joke this time, but Probopass is a pass. The moustache sweeps on the floor, it can’t possibly be anything but gross.

Stacey: More jokes for me: ProboPASS.

477 Dusknoir

Stacey: Weird Shin Megami Tensei thing. No.

Joe: If you won’t take the chunky ghost daddy, I will. Incredibly simple smash.

478 Froslass

Joe: Not for me, this whole line is creepy.

Stacey: Absolutely for me, the lore only makes it more alluring. A gorgeous Pokemon.

479 Rotom

Stacey: No. I don’t care that ‘oh what if it was…’. No. It’s odd.

Joe: Way to kill my joke before I could make it. I hate how Rotom is absolutely everywhere now. Rotom Phones, Rotom Dex, Rotom Rotom Rotom. Pass, and Nintendo needs to get over it too.

480 Uxie

Joe: After three generations of smashable legendaries, we’re at the baby trio. Pass.

Stacey: Yeah, I think these could be smashable with a slight redesign (although not this sleepyhead). Right now though, they’re all babies.

481 Mesprit

Stacey: Babies. No.

Joe: Babies, babies everywhere, and not a ‘mon to smash.

482 Azelf

Joe: Come on, give us some adult pokemon! Pass.

Stacey: Bay. Bee. No.

483 Dialga

Stacey: This one is not a baby, but it is a huge Digimon. Pass.

Joe: Sinnoh really stinks for its legendaries, pass.

484 Palkia

Joe: I think Palkia is a lot more smashable than Dialga in its base form. If I had to smash one, it’d be this. But I don’t, so I won’t.

Stacey: I think if I had to, it would be Dialga, but again, I don’t. Pass.

485 Heatran

Stacey: Oh, just supremely stupid for a Legendary. No chance.

Joe: This hardly qualifies as a Pokemon, let alone a legendary. Pass.

486 Regigigas

Joe: I smashed all three of the Hoenn Regis, so I’m coming for the big one. Smash.

Stacey: I picked Regice just to have picked one, so I can excuse myself from this beast.

487 Giratina

Stacey: Like a slug who crawled through a pile of staples. Not now, not ever.

Joe: Altered Forme is a smash. He is a sturdy boy and ‘ruler of all antimatter’ is peak Emo. Origin Forme is, as Stacey said, just a slug. Pass.

488 Cresselia

Joe: This design is just awful. It’s meant to be like the moon, but it just looks like it’s wearing bananas on its head. Pass.

Stacey: Finally we have a smashable Pokemon in Sinnoh. That’s what you meant to say, right? Easy smash.

489 Phione

Stacey: More babies. Hooray. Pass.

Joe: I’ve never been sure if Phione counts as a legendary or mythical or what. It’s a baby, it’s confusing, and it makes me feel insecure about my Pokemon knowledge. Pass.

490 Manaphy

Joe: The same applies to Manaphy as it did to Phione. Pass, and never make me question myself again.

Stacey: Still too much of a baby.

491 Darkrai

Stacey: I would understand this one, but it’s trying a little too hard. Pass.

Joe: For the same Emo-tastical reasons as Giratina, I’m smashing. It also somehow makes the big, detached jaw work for it.

492 Shaymin

Joe: It’s a hedgehog and/or a deer. Mythical guardian of the forest or whatever it’s meant to be, sure, but it’s still a tiny hedgehog.

Stacey: I love Shaymin. But yet again, it’s a baby.

493 Arceus

Stacey: You gotta smash god. You just gotta.

Joe: You’d think the god of all Pokemon would make itself more of a looker. If we were going purely on the bod, it’d be a pass. But smashing an omnipotent creator of the universe? You absolutely have to at least once.

Final Score

Stacey: 29/107 = 27.1 percent (overall total 137/493 = 27.8 percent)

Joe: 26/107 = 24.3 percent – the first failure of the smash or pass lists (overall total 152/493 = 30.8 percent)

A late surge for the bulkiest evolutions saw Joe cut Stacey’s Sinnoh lead down to keep his overall lead, now at 15 down from 18. It’s a small recovery for Stacey, and at one point Sinnoh looked to be the place where she made a serious dent. More importantly though, Joe’s distaste for Sinnoh leaves him one Pokemon short of passing, the punishment for which is… nothing. He does this of his own free will, so there’s nothing you can really do to make his life worse. Next week, we’ll do it Unova again.

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