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Pokémon Sun and Moon are launching this Friday, and we at Gamnesia wanted to celebrate—that's why, for the eighteen days leading up to the games' launch, we've been revealing our team's Top Ten Pokémon of each of the eighteen Types! Today's subject of discussion is Poison-Types, and while they may all seem like noxious beasts you'd never want to be around, we still identified ten that we love to have on our teams.
So let's get started! Here are our Top Ten Poison-Type Pokémon:
"It attacks by spraying a horribly smelly fluid from the tip of its tail. Attacks from above confound it." — Pokémon Platinum Version
A Poison/Dark-Type Pokémon from Gen IV, Skuntank is the evolved form of Stunky. Based obviously off of skunks, even going so far as to be called the Skunk Pokémon, this creature sprays out a liquid from its tail that smells horrendous and can hit targets up to fifty meters away—which is perhaps the inspiration for the "tank" part of its name. While its defenses aren't the best, it has some high HP and solid attacking power, and its two Typings cancel out every weakness except Poison's to Ground attacks, giving it some solid staying power in battle.
"It has the power in its clawed arms to make scrap of a car. The tips of its claws release poison." — Pokémon Diamond Version
An oddly-shaped scorpion-esque creature with arms coming out the sides of its head, Drapion is the Ogre Scorpion Pokémon. Its arms may be placed in a strange location that seems pretty unnatural considering that the rest of its proportions appear pretty normal, but its arms are still strong enough to rip apart cars; even with its poison-filled claws, it is proud of its physical strength and prefers to finish opponents off with its own power. It's an interesting stance for a part-Dark-Type to take, especially since its pre-evolution Skorupi seems very fond of using poison over power. Make of it what you will; either way, we still think Drapion is a pretty cool creature.
"Swaying and dodging the attacks of its foes, it weaves its flexible body in close, then lunges out with its poisonous claws." — Pokémon HeartGold & SoulSilver Versions
Toxicroak, like the Croagunk it evolves from, is a Poison/Fighting-Type from the Sinnoh region and is based off of the numerous frogs in our world which advertise their toxicity with their brightly colored skin and patterns. But unlike most of its real world counterparts, who only poison those who eat them, Toxicroak is happy to spread its poison while still alive and breathing, using the claw on its hand to do so. Interestingly, it does this in spite of being called the Toxic Mouth Pokémon; this classification appears to come from how its poison is stored within its throat sac, which then is sent to its claws via a series of tubes running down its arms. It's useless against Psychic attacks, but that doesn't stop us from finding it rather awesome.
"It lives and grows by absorbing dust, germs, and poison gases that are contained in toxic waste and garbage." — Pokémon Yellow Version
Perhaps known best as being the anime's original partner Pokémon for Team Rocket's James, Weezing is the evolved form of Koffing and is apparently formed when two Koffings come together, mixing their separate toxic gases over time as they slowly merge into this Poison Gas Pokémon. Each of these heads continue to contain their own type of gas, though they do continue to mix constantly, and it survives and grows larger by ingesting noxious fumes from rotting garbage and toxic waste. You'd think James would've gotten deathly ill from being around this Pokémon all that time, but maybe he built up a resistance to it after all their adventures together.
"Seviper's swordlike tail serves two purposes - it slashes foes and douses them with secreted poison. This Pokémon will not give up its long-running blood feud with Zangoose." — Pokémon Sapphire Version
The Fang Snake Pokémon from Generation III, Seviper is known both for its bladed tail and its generations-long feud with Zangoose, a relationship designed after the constant struggle between snakes and mongooses in the real world. Seviper is the only pure Poison-Type Pokémon that does not evolve from or into another creature, but that's just fine with us, as it's got a great design and plenty of power already. Between its fangs and its poisonous blade of a tail, Seviper just looks like a dangerous Pokémon and one we'd never want to cross, though we'd be quite happy to have one join our team.
"Tales are told of ships that wander into seas where Dragalge live, never to return." — Pokémon Y
Introduced in Generation VI as Kalos' "Mock Kelp Pokémon," Dragalge is a Poison/Dragon-Type which lives underwater and has camouflaged itself by taking on an appearance similar to the dried-up kelp found floating in the ocean. The poison it spits from its mouth is strong enough to burn a hole straight through the hull of a tanker, and it uses this against anything that enters its territory; as a result, tales abound of ships that enter Dragalge's waters and are lost as a result. It's got a really fascinating design and some cool lore, plus its Typing is a rather unique one, so Dragalge quickly became a standout Pokémon of the sixth generation for many of us.
"The pattern on its belly appears to be a frightening face. Weak foes will flee just at the sight of the pattern." — Pokémon FireRed Version
You can't have one of Team Rocket's original partner Pokémon without the other, right? That's what we think, and we rather prefer Jessie's old friend Arbok to James' odorous Weezing. The final form of the original serpent evolutionary line, Arbok is the Cobra Pokémon, and it uses long body to constrict its prey and the bright patterns on its belly to intimidate others or frighten them away. Interestingly enough, the early games mention that Arbok's patterns change based on region, and with Gen II and III Arbok do indeed have a different pattern than all the others. It's a neat little detail that most of us have overlooked all these years; even without realizing that, though, we adore this snake and all it has done, be that as a member of Team Rocket or of our own parties.
"Having four wings allows it to fly more quickly and quietly so it can sneak up on prey without its noticing." — Pokémon Black 2 & White 2 Versions
First seen in Generation II, Crobat is the final evolutionary form of Golbat and Zubat, two Pokémon that we had already come to respect in the first few games—but Crobat kicked things up a notch and soon became a fan-favorite. Aside from losing the gaping maw that seems to define Golbat for a more standard sized orifice, Crobat's biggest change is the addition of two new wings on its hind legs; these backups are still powerful enough to keep it aloft, and alternating between the pairs allows the Bat Pokémon to continue flying for a full day without rest if it needs to. It might be a bit more clumsy on the ground now, but in the air Crobat is a swift and silent stalker of prey.
We all wanted a Crobat when we first learned about it, seeing as it was an evolution to a creature we'd already thought of as strong back in Gen I, but Game Freak's decision to base this evolution on the Friendship between Pokémon and Trainer ensured that we got really close to Golbat while waiting for it to reach its final form. We traveled with it constantly, doing whatever we could to raise its love for us, and in turn we came to really love this Pokémon as well. That made it all the more rewarding to finally obtain that Crobat we'd worked so hard for, and it became a lifelong love of our team's as a result.
"Born from polluted sludge in the sea, Grimer's favorite food is anything filthy. They feed on wastewater pumped out from factories." — Pokémon Emerald Version
I'm just going to come right out and admit that our team is probably a bit biased towards Grimer; while I'm sure many would list it or Muk in their Top Ten Poison-Types, I don't know if they'd rank it this highly. Our love for it mostly comes from how we've appropriated Grimer's Red and Blue sprite as a custom emoji for our staff chats—it serves as our team's own personal shorthand for "hooray!", "party time!", "definitely!", or any number of other messages depending on the context, so we've all come to adore this little guy.
That's not to say that it isn't a great Pokémon on its own, of course. Grimer is the Sludge Pokémon from the original titles, a creature formed of living sludge that sees toxic waste and garbage as a wonderful feast, and it is so full of poisons that plants die and never regrow in the areas where it travels. When it loses pieces of its body, they take on a life of their own as brand new Grimer, which would probably have some horrific consequences if Game Freak ever took it to its natural conclusion. It's also getting an Alolan form in Generation VII, and while some of us find the new design a bit gaudy, we all agree that the addition of a Dark-Typing can only help Grimer become a stronger competitor.
But if our favorite Pokémon emoji was only ranked second, what toxic creature stands at the top? What could possibly rank above the image of a sludge-filled monster raising its hands in pure, uninhibited joy? Why, none other than a monarch of a Poison-Type Pokémon:
"Nidoking's thick tail packs enormously destructive power. With one swing, it can topple a metal transmission tower. Once this Pokémon goes on a rampage, there is no stopping it." — Pokémon Ruby & Sapphire Versions
Over half of all Poison-Types originated in Pokémon Red and Blue, so we expected from the start that one of them would probably take the top spot—and of all the poisonous beasts of the first six generations, none stood out to us as much as the great Nidoking. Serving as the final evolution to the male Nidoran and Nidorino, Nidoking's form just screams of its power, its armored bulk mixing well with its clawed arms and horns to create a very mighty appearance. Its tail, however, seems to be the most dangerous part of it, as it can topple metal towers, snap telephone poles with one swing as if they were matchsticks, and "smash, constrict, then break the prey's bones" when in battle. Its primary horn is also plenty strong, as this aspect of the Drill Pokémon is said to be able to pierce diamonds, but the tail appears to be its primary weapon.
It was never easy to get a Nidoking, as Moon Stones have always been in short supply, but getting such a powerful creature was certainly a good reward for that cost. Its hide is said to be like steel, and it is both a Poison- and Ground-Type Pokémon; this lets it easily switch between defeating opponents slowly with poison and pummeling them with powerful Ground-Type attacks at will, as well as wrecking foes with its own body when required. It can even expand its moveset further with other horn-based moves like Megahorn or via TMs like with Thunder or Fire Blast, giving it plenty of ways to fight back against its several weaknesses
Nidoking may not have gotten too much attention in recent years—we'd sure love to see it obtain a Mega Evolution or maybe a Regional Variant that takes full advantage of that "steel hide" comment—but it remains a mighty contender that we love to have on our own teams. Power, variety, and rarity: they're all solid aspects of this impressively-designed Pokémon, and we are thrilled to see it taking our top slot among Poison-Types.
That concludes our rankings for Poison-Type Pokémon! Did you like our ten choices, or are we missing out on the majesty of a different toxic beast that you utterly adore? If you want to convince us of its worth, go ahead on down to the comments and let your voice be heard! And don't forget to drop by again tomorrow for another Top Ten list of a different Pokémon type!
And be sure to check out the rest of our Top Ten Type Pokémon lists: