Turns out some of the wackiest, weirdest aquatic Pokemon aren't just the deranged creations of a Japanese video game designer. They're actually based off real-life creatures that continue to trawl our oceans today — it's just that the Pokemon versions are usually way cuter. Meet some of the Pokemon based on real animals.
1. Gorebyss | Long-Nosed Chimaera
Gorebyss (Credit: Bulbapedia)
Long-nosed chimaera (Credit: Giphy)
The Rhinochimaeridae, or long-nosed chimaera, stands out from the chimaera crowd thanks to the long snout it uses to find its food. Similarly, the Pokemon Gorebyss uses that long pink nose to stab its prey and drain them of their bodily fluids.
2. Mudkip & Wooper | Axolotl
Mudkip (Credit: Bulbapedia)
Wooper (Credit: Bulbapedia)
The almost impossibly cute and delightfully weird axolotl, or Mexican salamander, is so iconic that Pokemon couldn't help but base two characters off of it. Mudkip and Wooper both embody the axolotl's earnest smile and alien-like head gear.
3. Huntail | Oarfish
Huntail (Credit: Bulbapedia)
Oarfish (Credit: Giphy)
These deep-sea serpents lead pretty similar lives. Far beneath the ocean's surface, they're both rarely seen and have adapted to the extreme pressures of living at that depth, but the oarfish definitely has the Huntail beat in size.
These monsters can reach up to 36 feet long, and when they wash up on beaches after storms, they fuel the legends about mythical underwater serpents.
4. Shellos | Chromodoris lochi
Shellos (Credit: Bulbapedia)
Chromodoris lochi (Credit: Giphy)
With two perky antennae, a wavy body, and a pleasant expression as it drifts through the Pokemon universe, the Shellos is pretty much a dead ringer for the gorgeous sea slug Chromodoris lochi.
5. Stunfisk | Stargazer
Stunfisk (Credit: Bulbapedia)
Stargazer (Credit: Shutterstock)
The stargazer family of fish gets its name for those upward-facing eyes that help this species spot and ambush prey swimming above them.
The Stunfisk has the same eye game going on and — according to Pokemon legend — burrows deep into the seafloor just like the stargazer, waiting for prey to swim by and get zapped by its shockingly strong skin.