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Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Game Theory: Solving Raticate's "DEATH" (Pokemon Red and Blue)

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Gary's Raticate died as he lived,

as a creature enslaved to an obnoxious, 10 year old kid,

forced to battle against other enslaved creatures

Ash Ketchum to Ash Ketchum,

Poke Dust to Poke Dust

[Spookey singing] I'm gonna be the best

Like nobody ever was

[Game Theory Theme Plays]

Hello, Internet! Welcome to Game Theory!

Where, let's face it, for as cool as it might seem to live in the Pokemon world,

do you really want a two and a half foot rat to jump out at you

the next time you're walking through some tall grass?

Seriously, where do you think you are? New York?

Minus the grass?

According to the Pokedex, Ratcate is a 40 pound rodent!

Let's see how scared of mice you really are when you find this thing

raiding your kitchen in the middle of the night to chew on your ramen packets.

But honestly, Generation 1's Raticate would have been a mostly forgotten Normal-type,

gone the way of Nidoran and Sandshrew,

buried under the more popular Arcanines, Rapidashes and Mewtwos

had it not been for one nagging, and incredibly dark, little detail-

The theory that you killed your rival's Raticate!

[High-pitched voice] "Oh My God, you killed Raticate!"

[Video clip] "Holy @#$%!"

So, with Pokemon Sun and Moon taking up 50 percent of Nintendo's booth this year at E3,

and Pokefever once again spreading,

it's time we prepare for the future of this franchise by solving one of the biggest mysteries from its past.

Call your rival what you will: Gary, Blue, Asshat,

but the Creepypasta around his Raticate is one of the oldest

and most infamous Poke-theories out there

Still, for all you non "Genwunners", let me explain:

Throughout your journey to be the very best, like no one ever was,

you constantly run into your rival, who forces you to battle against his ever-improving roster of Pokemon.

As you progress through the game, building your team, so does he, adding to his roster one by one.

Just like most players, his first new recruit is a Pidgey,

followed shortly by an Abra and a Rattata.

And, also like most trainers, he tends to stick with a core team.

In the final battle against him, his starter, along with Abra and Pidgey, are all in their fully evolved forms,

with a Rhydon, Gyarados and Exeggutor picked up along the way and added for good measure.

But that begs the question: what happened to his Rattata?

We see Rattata in your third battle with him, and the evolved form Raticate in your fourth battle,

and then nothing for the rest of the game.

"Big deal!", I hear you saying, "Maybe he switched out Raticate for something stronger?"

And you would be totally right in this assumption except for three key facts.

First, it's THE ONLY Pokemon that goes missing from his team across the whole game.

Every Pokemon you see him use throughout your various battles with him makes it into the final roster-

except for Raticate!

But not only that: in your infamous fifth battle with him,

your rival only has five Pokemon in his team, leaving one slot blank.

Even if you don't like your Raticate anymore,

having anyone in that empty slot would be better than having no one. So why not Raticate?

It'd be like entering a fight with one hand tied behind your back- you're practically handicapping yourself.

But lastly, and most importantly, is the location of that fifth battle: Pokemon Tower,

a seven floor cemetery for dead Pokemon smack in the middle of Lavender Town.

Okay, well, off in the northwest corner of the town, you get the point, it's a cemetery.

Your rival's empty Pokemon slot and the disappearance of Raticate,

when coupled with the battle in a Pokemon cemetery, all led the Internet to the only logical conclusion:

You killed it!

Your rival was there to bury his dead Raticate- one that you, as the player, had a hand in killing

during your previous battle aboard the S.S. Anne.

So, is it true?

Are you an 11-year old animal killer?

Today I'm putting Red on trial and coming up with the definitive answer to this legendary mystery

surrounding this not-so-legendary Pokemon.

First things first: Pokemon death.

The Pokemon Tower is supposedly filled with the remains of dead Pokemon,

but how exactly does a Pokemon die in the first place?

I mean, if Poketheorists are claiming that we killed Raticate,

then how did we do it, exactly?

It seems like such an obvious and dumb question,

and yet when you actually look across the games and animated series

you never really get all that clear of an answer.

I mean, it is a franchise trying to appeal to younger kids and all;

I don't know many 5 year olds who are stoked about contemplating their finite existence

through the death throes of their Pika-pals.

Sure we hear about Pokemon dying, but to the best of my knowledge

we only ever see two Pokemon truly die; both by self-sacrifice and both with questionable canonicity.

First is Lucario in the movie "Lucario and the Mystery of Mew",

and the other is Latios to stop a tsunami in the movie "Pokemon Heroes".

That Latios scene, man.

Seems like someone is always cutting onions when that scene is on.

So strange how that works, I don't even like onions!

[Clears throat] Must. Prove. Theory.

In the games, we know that AZ's Floette died when called to battle during a great Pokemon War,

but we don't get any more information than that.

So for more clues, we turn to the Pokedex.

It's there that we're able to, entry by entry, piece together more information about the subject of how Pokemon die.

For instance, it's confirmed that Pokemon will eat each other.

Wurmple's Generation 6 entry clearly states that it must defend itself against all the Swellow birds.

"Wurmple is targeted by Swellow as prey."

Then there's Gorebyss, whose Pokedex entry from Sapphire states that when it spots prey, it'll

"Insert its thin mouth into the prey's body and drain the prey of its body fluids."

Holy Sharpedo, that's dark!

So, very clearly, Pokemon will eat each other as predator and prey.

Good to know that the next time I'm standing around trying to catch a wild Gyarados that could bite me in half.

There are no rules in this land!

But that's not all. There's also deaths like Charmander, where we learn:

"It's life would end if the flame on it's tail were to go out."

A threat we see multiple times throughout the course of the animated series.

Finally, there's simply old age, as we learn about from Mr. Fuji and his Doduo in the manga.

So, the possible causes of a Pokemon death are pretty straightforward: get eaten, get old,

or get sacrificed for the salvation of the planet.

You know, just like a typical pet.

But then, what about damage sustained from battles?

The theory goes that your rival's Raticate died because you beat it so badly during your battle on the S.S. Anne,

a ship with no access to a Pokemon Center to heal the 'mon in time.

And while at first this may seem silly, since in one hundred percent of battles across all generations

you cause your opponent's Pokemon to simply "faint", episodes of the anime show that battling

could potentially be a real threat to the life of these creatures.

I mean, look no further than the episode "Pika and Goliath", where Pikachu gets Hyper Beam-ed at

point blank range by Raichu, causing him to fall into a coma,

at which point he needs to be defibrillated multiple times before coming back to consciousness!

And also while we're on the subject here, let's level for a second, Ash Ketchum.

It seems like every time Pikachu has a real problem in battle, IT'S ALWAYS against a Raichu! ALWAYS!

Could you, for once, save one of your Pokemon to the end of the battle, you know, one that might not

be the exact same type as the Pokemon you are trying to take down?

You are an irresponsible trainer!

Then there's Celebi in the fourth Pokemon movie, "Pokemon 4Ever".

Ah, I- I see what you guys did there. Ohohoh you!

Where Celebi overexerts itself and literally dies,

before being revived by the spirits of the past and future, blah blah blah, miracles happen, the day is saved,

Team Rocket blasts off again.

But the anime, of course, does that weird thing where Pokemon don't go back into Pokeballs,

since how're you going to sell cuddly stuffed animals of 700+ characters if they spend all that time

chilling in balls around your waist?

"Get out there and hug those trainers, damn it, we got merch to push!"

Maybe that affects things?

Since in the games, Raticate and other fainted Pokemon always return to their balls

will going directly back into their balls help improve their chances of survival?

Well, it doesn't quite look like it.

After years of debating what happens inside Pokeballs, it took Super Smash Brothers Melee and Brawl

to set the record straight.

According to their trophy information for the Pokeball item,

"Pokeballs contain an environment specially designed for Pokemon comfort."

Despite appearances, they actually contain a wide, comfortable, Pokemon-friendly world inside of them,

and as we see in the games,Pokemon aren't getting healed between battles in their balls;

each time they're let out, they're just as injured as when they went in.

Getting turned into data so they could be stored in the Pokeball isn't necessarily improving their chances of survival-

it's just a place where they can wait out their time until the next visit to Nurse Joy.

So in short, it's the perfect recipe for this theory to be correct.

Pokemon can die, battles actually injure these creatures to life-threatening levels, and no amount of

hiding in a Pokeball is going to save them.

So is that it?

Do all signs point to yes?

Did we truly kill our rival's Raticate?



And while we could sit here analyzing Blue's dialogue in the Tower and assessing that it doesn't

match with the type of things a grieving Pokemon trainer who just buried a loyal team member would say,

the answer is so much simpler and definitive than that.

In fact, that critical piece of evidence, much like the grandfather clock from FNAF,

has been staring us in the face- in this case, for years.

The incontrovertable proof as to why Blue's Raticate is alive and well is his level.

For literally a decade, this theory has hinged on the belief that your rival doesn't store Pokemon on his PC;

that the only reason he would lose Raticate is through some tragic means, like death.

But look at how his Rattata's level changes across each battle:

Fight 3 on Nugget Bridge is the first time we see Rattata, and it's at level 15.

The next encounter on the S.S. Anne is when he challenges you with the

"soon-to-be-deceased" Raticate, at level 16.

And by the fifth battle, Raticate is no more, supposedly dead by our blood-stained, 11 year old hands,

buried in the Pokemon Tower.

But here's where we've been wrong the whole time!

This Rattata is not the same as this Raticate. They're two entirely separate Pokemon!

How do we know?

Rattata doesn't evolve into Raticate until level 20.

But the Raticate we see is at level 16, meaning that it has to be a different Pokemon he caught in the wild!

And why is this important?

Because it establishes that your rival does indeed have more Pokemon in his team that we don't see-

that he either released Rattata and Ratticate, or stores them in his PC like any normal trainer.

Well, either those options, or the extreme conclusion we killed both Rattata and Raticate.

In which case, wow. Even creepier pasta.

Here's the thing. If he only swaps out one Pokemon from his team for the whole game, yeah, that's pretty suspicious.

It's an odd design choice.

But if we know he also possessed a low level Rattata that never appeared again

well, now his behavior is actually pretty normal.

He just stores Pokemon he's not interested in training anymore.

This leveling detail was actually brought to my attention by a former Poketheorist "KoolGoldfinch",

so huge, huge props to him for spotting this small, and quite honestly game-changing fact.

But in case you're still not convinced, guys, come on, to put one final nail in the coffin

simply analyze the Pokemon's stats.

Raticate get's swapped out in Blue's team by an Exeggcute, which evolves into Exeggcutor.

Now even if you don't know Pokemon strategy at all and advanced team builds or anything like that,

one thing I'm sure you understand is that in RPGs, higher numbers tend to be better.

Compare stats for Raticate to Exeggcutor.

Just a superficial glance shows you that the weird palm tree is better in every category than the giant rat.

It's as simple as that.

In short, today, Occam's Razor wins out.

Now, for those of you unfamiliar, Occam's Razor is a name of a principle built around the idea that

among competing hypotheses, the one with the fewest assumptions should be selected.

Occam's Razor is basically the idea that the simplest answer is, more often that not, the right answer.

It is, quite literally, the antithesis of this channel's motto,

where I'll go to whatever lengths necessary to explain away weird gameplay mechanics

or details that just feel out of place.

But in this instance, the internet simply took a lot of admittedly strange details about the battle:

the missing Pokemon, the empty slot, the death-filled setting, and extrapolated a bit too far.

But this time, unlike other creepypastas where evidence one way or the other simply doesn't exist,

this time the truth can't be denied.

The levels don't lie.

The simplest explanation is indeed the correct one.

Sorry, creepypasta writers, but it's time we tell this urban legend

Smell ya later!

But hey, that's just a theory-

a game theory!

Thanks for watching!

But if you're a fan of the Raticate creepypasta and are in the mood for more, try this one on for size:

It was December 1975 and the Lutz family had just moved into their new home on Long Island.

But this wasn't just any home- one year earlier Ronald Defeo had murdered his parents, brother and sisters

in that house.

Room by room, bed by bed.

The angry murdered souls lived on in the walls and rafters of the house,

and when the Lutz family moved in, the house wasn't happy about it.

Determined to get them out, one way or another.

This is the shocking true story of "The Amityville Horror", available as an audiobook right now on

where they have over 250 thousand downloadable titles to choose from,

including other horror classics like "Hell House", "The Exorcist" and "The Bell Witch".

So if you're ready to get scared, start your free 30 day trial by going to and get yourself

some free scary stories that are a whole lot scarier, and more believable, than poor old Raticate over here.

Remember, that's

or just click the link in the description.

One final shoutout to the channel KoolGoldfinch.

Man, awesome job spotting that level difference. Huge clap and a half to you, sir, your Poketheories

have been missed.

Next week, the return of something very exciting with a very special guest.

I hope your body is ready...

The Description of Game Theory: Solving Raticate's "DEATH" (Pokemon Red and Blue)