Written by Jonathan Wojcik


   The fifth generation introduced a lot of interesting bug-types, and one of the most interesting of all may be Accelgor, not based on an arthropod of any sort, but on a Mollusk. Though I intended these to be reviews of individual pokemon, it's impossible to talk about Accelgor without talking about its predecessor and counterparts.

   Accelgor begins its existence as Shelmet, something directly between a snail and a nautilus with a solid steel shell. Its mortal enemy is Karrablast, inspired by real-world Carabid beetles who specialize in preying upon snails.

   These two pokemon evolve only when traded with one another, during which Karrablast rather rudely steals the metallic armor from its foe, becoming the knight-like Escavalier, while poor little Shelmet evolves into Accelgor; a physically vulnerable but now lethally agile ninja-like slug, wrapping itself in detritus like some sort of slimy bagworm.

   Escavalier is a cool enough design and concept, but it's impossible for me not to find Accelgor significantly cooler. It's a snail cruelly torn from its shell, hardened into a vengeful stealth assassin with hilariously nubby arms and cold, resentful eyes seemingly situated inside its own mouth.

   If I have only one criticism of Accelgor, it's that it really, really should have been a ghost type. Carabid beetles don't just burglarize snails, they eat them, and between its ragged, grey wrappings and curly head, Accelgor already looks like some sort of restless phantasm at only a glance. Still, an angry ninja slug is one of the silliest concepts in the series, and the end result still comes out completely badass.