Last month, The Pokémon Company promised to share new information today on the highly anticipated Pokémon Sun and Moon, and they thankfully stood by their word by releasing a brand new trailer this morning. Fans were treated to new details on the islands of the Alola region, a Rotom-powered Pokédex that can even scan QR codes, and more importantly, the mascot legendaries Solgaleo and Lunala.
For Solgaleo in particular, the fact that the Sunne Pokémon is a dual Psychic/Steel-type rather than a partial Fire-type is understandably odd at first glance, given the sun motif and its expected association to fire. However, some knowledgeable fans theorize that the reasoning behind its odd typing is due to a more probable association with dying stars, solar flares, and alchemy.
The basis for these theories is drawn from Solgaleo’s description
on the official website:
“Since ancient times, Solgaleo has been honored as an emissary of the sun. It is referred to with reverence as “the beast that devours the sun.” Solgaleo’s body holds a vast amount of energy, and it shines with light when it’s active. It has a flowing mane with a remarkable resemblance to the sun. Its signature move is Sunsteel Strike, an attack that charges at an opponent with the force of a meteor, disregarding the target’s Ability.
“Solgaleo’s Ability is Full Metal Body, a new Ability that no previous Pokémon has had. With the Full Metal Body Ability, a Pokémon’s stats will not be lowered by the effects of an opponent’s moves or Ability.”
With that information, Tumblr user Plantsa-man hypothesized that Solgaleo’s typing was chosen with dying stars in mind. The sun is a star, which undergoes nuclear fusion at its core, where gravity crushes Hydrogen atoms together to create Helium: this produces radiation, which pushes back against the gravity and stabilizes the star, thus keeping it from collapsing in on itself. Once a star has reached a point in its life where fusion ceases (after burning through Hydrogen and starting to crush Helium atoms, or other gases), the remaining atoms fuse to become Iron. At this stage, no fusion is created, and with that, the star loses its ability to produce radiation. The iron builds up until it reaches critical mass, and the star then begins to collapse in on itself from the strain before dying, at which point it goes supernova. In other words, the sun is devoured—a reference to Solgaleo’s status as ”
the beast that devours the sun.”
Scientific Pokédex, a Tumblr page that analyzes the world of
Pokémon from a real-world analytical and scientific approach, takes this a step further by associating Solgaleo with sun spots and solar flares. The page dubbed “The Mythbusters of the Pokémon Universe” reports how sun spots and solar flares are caused by a star’s magnetic field, which are known to be extremely powerful. Magnetism is a property shared among certain established Steel-type Pokémon such as Probopass and the Magnemite and Beldum evolutionary lines. The fact that Solgaleo’s signature move, “Sunsteel Strike,” bears some resemblance to a solar flare also adds legitimacy to this theory.
Finally, Redditor LeechSeed222 pointed out that Solgaleo’s Steel-typing is due to the lion itself as a motif in alchemy. Specifically, he refers to the image of a green lion devouring the sun, which is an alchemic symbol for the purification of metals. As for an explanation behind its Psychic-type, it is common for Pokémon thought to be extraterrestrial in nature (such as Solrock, Lunatone, and Jirachi, among others) to have this type; a precedent within the games is already set.
Do you believe that these theories do a great job explaining the possible reasoning behind Solgaleo’s Psychic- and Steel-typing? Or do you believe that the
Pokémon Sun mascot was robbed of a more viable Fire-type? Give us your thoughts in the comments below!