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The Creepiest Things We Found In Pokemon Sword And Shield

When it comes to long-running, beloved franchises, few can rival Pokemon's power. From its infectiously cute designs to the nostalgic gameplay loop, the series has cultivated a worldwide fan base that rallies around a yellow mouse with red cheeks. Despite some controversy before launch, Sword and Shield — the newest Pokemon games — sold more than six million copies worldwide during release weekend.


Even with the global love for the series, you can't deny Game Freak created some straight-up creepy things for its flagship franchise. From the Lavender Town Syndrome controversy to disturbing Pokedex entries, you'll find a lot of uncomfortable elements beneath the cute and flashy flair. Generation 8 is no exception, as Pokemon Sword and Shield introduces some wild yet terrifying experiences. Of course, it's all in good fun; the games have an E rating after all. If you read between the lines, though, you may find some aspects of this generation hard to stomach. Here are the creepiest things we found in Pokemon Sword and Shield.

The foggy woods of Galar

Pokemon Sword and Shield opens up in a pretty laid-back way: your friend wants to go on an adventure with you. Where's the harm in that? As you wave goodbye to your mum, you set off, get your first Pokemon, and explore the creepy forest next to your house.


The Slumbering Weald might as well be your backyard, and it's terrifying to think your character was raised next to it. The further into this forest you go, the denser the fog becomes, to the point you can barely see in front of you. Then you encounter an intimidating, huge dog Pokemon. Of course, this is your respective legendary Pokemon, based on whether you got Sword or Shield. Nonetheless, fighting it feels a bit eerie. None of your attacks will connect, instead flying through the creature as if it were a mirage. With every passing round, the fog grows even denser, and you eventually pass out. Not the most welcoming way to start a Pokemon game.

Gengar's mouth leads to the afterlife

Gengar has never been the friendliest looking Pokemon; yet, it's become one of the most recognizable creatures in the franchise, often ranking high in various popularity polls. Fortunately, it survived the Dexit cut when Sword and Shield launched. It even got the royal treatment, earning its own unique Gigantamax form in which it transforms into a larger-than-life version of itself, gaining all sorts of stat boosts and a unique special attack. Oh, and it looks absolutely terrifying.


Gengar's most frightening quality has always been its big mouth, and making it even bigger doesn't make it any better. In Gigantamax form, it looks like a huge tunnel you could fall into, never to emerge again. Its Pokedex entry doubles down on that fear, alluding that its mouth leads straight to the afterlife: "If you stand in front of its mouth, you'll hear your loved ones' voices calling out to you." Next time you use Gengar in a competitive battle, try not to think about your loved ones.

Garbodor stares you down

Criticizing a literal pile of trash may seem like low-hanging fruit, but something about Garbodor warrants worry. It literally takes after trash, and it eats garbage to sustain itself. Its design is disconcerting, especially the way its mouth and eyes are laid out. They're almost on the same horizontal line, which really drives home its inhuman, monstrous nature.


Gigantamax Garbodor amplifies its creepy factor as much as it boosts its stats. The facial structure problems still exist, but the monster qualities feel exacerbated. The pink eyes look unnatural, and the beady pupils make it seem like it's staring you down, waiting for you to join its garbage pile. In fact, calling it a "garbage pile" would do Garbodor a disservice. In its Gigantamax form, it grows large enough to consume skyscrapers and planes. Something with that much power shouldn't be given sentience, but now it can roam the land, emitting odors so toxic it poisons your bones through your skin.

A wyrm in your Applin

With every new generation of Pokemon, you get to see some of the creative ideas that Game Freak has concocted in its labs. One interesting new addition to the Sword and Shield roster comes in the form of Applin and its two evolutions: Flapple and Appletun. Applin looks a lot like an apple, as you'd expect; however, it isn't actually an apple. The real Applin is a dragon that lives inside of the fruit, hiding from predators. When it evolves into Flapple, it emerges from its shell, using the husk of the fruit as wings and a tail. Conversely, Appletun takes on a form reminiscent of apple pie.


Some might call this a clever design. Others might see it as a constant reminder that apples can have unwelcome guests inside of them, like worms (or wyrms in this case). This isn't the first food inspired Pokemon design, but people rarely enjoy reminders of possible parasite in their fruit. Be wary next time you bite into an apple; you might find a little dragon inside.

The skeletal nature of Eternatus

One of the biggest challenges you'll face in Pokemon Sword and Shield is the legendary creature Eternatus. This incredibly powerful Pokemon sits at the center of the Dynamax phenomenon, and it absorbs a ludicrous amount of energy from the world of Galar. Taking down such an overwhelming force is not easy, and its design really drives home its intimidation factor. It looks unnatural and almost alien, yet its body seems skeletal in nature. Its wriggly limbs evoke the image of a centipede.


When it Eternamaxes — its own special form of Dynamaxing — Eternatus turns into a gigantic, metallic serpentine dragon. It coils around a core that houses all the power in Galar, and it looks down on you as an insignificant insect. Instead of a head, it has a large claw that always looks like it's about to grab you. Luckily, two legendary dogs come to your aid during the battle, providing some much needed backup in one of the coolest encounters in Sword and Shield.

Sandaconda's sandy sinuses

If you fear snakes, you probably won't find yourself using Silicobra or Sandaconda often, if at all, in Pokemon Sword and Shield. Silicobra, as you'd expect, looks a lot like a cobra, and its evolution resembles a coiled snake with a bloated neck, if that even makes sense. Beyond their reptile-like designs, their Pokedex entries make our sinuses hurt.


Sandaconda loves to eat sand, and it stores that sand in its pouch, hence the bloated nature of its design. The first evolution can only hold up to 17 pounds, while the evolved form can keep more than 220 pounds of sand in its pouch. Consuming something as fine and granulated as sand doesn't sound appealing, but Sandaconda does some heinous things with this sand. To attack its foes, it spews the sand at a high speed through its nose. It's uncomfortable to think about, as it sounds both messy and painful.

Team Yell's obsession with Marnie

Every Pokemon game features a group of adults who act as an antagonizing force, one way or another. They can be as diabolical as Team Rocket from the first generation or as campy as Team Skull from the seventh generation. Sword and Shield's take on the opposing gang is none other than Team Yell, a group of misfits who blindly voice their support for Pokemon trainer Marnie.


At first, Team Yell is nothing more than a nuisance. They don't have grand plans of taking over the world, they just want to support Marnie. Their overzealous enthusiasm calls something into question, though: Why are these people — who are definitely older than Marnie — such big supporters of a young girl? Sure, Team Yell works for Marnie's older brother, but the level of fanaticism calls their judgment and motivation into question. Is it just loyalty that spurs this support? Or is there something more untoward going on?

How Sizzlipede eats its prey

Meet Sizzlipede and its evolution, Centiskorch. This fire-bug Pokemon looks a lot like a centipede, hence its name, and it might already skeeve you out if you fear creepy crawlies. The little circles on its stomach generate a ton of heat thanks to the flammable gas in its body. When it's on the hunt, this two-foot tall centipede wraps itself around its prey. Then, it heats up the pads on its stomach, cooking the unfortunate creature. Once the "food" reaches well-done temperatures, Sizzlipede gets to eat.


Clearly, Game Freak pulled no punches when it came to designing savage Pokemon in Sword and Shield. Sizzlipede evolves into Centiskorch, a bigger, meaner version of its previous self. This creature sits at nearly 10 feet tall, which gives it a lot of surface area to wrap around whatever it wants to cook and eat. It can get as hot as 1,500 degrees Fahrenheit, too, so it'll cook anything faster than you can blink. If that's not enough to make you uncomfortable, just remember Centiskorch also has a Gigantamax form, where it grows even bigger and stronger.

The tea that consumes your soul

In Pokemon Sword and Shield, you'll find a cute little spirit in a teacup named Sinistea. Its design has the same appealing qualities Chip from Beauty and the Beast has, but everything about its description betrays its adorable design. See, Sinistea has two forms based on the teacup it possesses: a forgery version and a genuine version.


If you have the genuine article, you have nothing to worry about. The teacup is a fine piece of tableware, after all. If you have a forged version of Sinistea, don't drink out of it — ever. It literally absorbs your life force, but it also tastes absolutely horrible. It gets worse when a forged Sinistea evolves into Polteageist, taking the form of a teapot. Once evolved, it uses its disgusting tea as a weapon, launching the vile liquid directly into the mouths of its enemies. This tea, according to the Pokedex, "causes strong chills if swallowed." So whatever you do, do not carry around forged versions of these two Pokemon.

Grimmsnarl has hair-muscles

Impidimp looks like a Pokemon with an attitude problem. It's got a mean streak, as it thrives off the frustration and negative energy of others. It evolves into Morgrem, which has hair sharp enough to hurt enemies. Things get creepy in the Pokemon's final evolution: Grimmsnarl.


The bulky imp might be one of the most muscular creatures in Sword and Shield, and its pointy ears and nose double down on the intimidation factor. If you take a closer look at its "muscles," though, you'll realize that it's actually just a bunch of its hair. This abomination has hair that acts like muscle fibers, meaning it can unfurl them and whip them around like tentacles. When the hair bunches up around its limbs, Grimmsnarl becomes even stronger than Machamp, which can historically move mountains with one arm. The thought of using hair like muscle fibers is an unsettling one. Its Gigantamax form means even more hair, which it can allegedly use to drill through the earth. We'll stick with Machamp, thanks.


The curse of Runerigus

Generally speaking, any time someone mentions a curse, things get creepy quickly. The phrase "lingering spirits" also has chilling implications. For Sword and Shield, Game Freak decided to put a curse on a lingering spirit, so if you're superstitious, you may want to avoid Yamask. This Pokemon was introduced back in Generation 6, and it embodies the spirits of the dead. It evolves into Cofarigus, a literal coffin with spectral arms.


In Generation 8, you can stumble upon a Galarian Yamask. Instead of a mask, this Pokemon carries a cursed clay slab that possessed it. The slab continues to absorb Yamask's power, until it eventually evolves into Runerigus. This creature becomes more clay than spirit, as the hex engraved on the slab takes over. If you touch it, you'll be flooded with whatever dark memories caused those engravings to appear in the first place. Spirit possessions are hardly a new concpet; that's par for the course when it comes to horror. But when a cursed object possess a spirit? That's a whole lot of no.

Ball Guy's giant, round head

Everyone intrinsically recognizes the human form. The shape marks a core part of the human identity, and when something is a little off about it, it's easy to notice. So, when you stroll into your first gym and see Ball Guy, you know you're in for a wild ride. He looks like an average guy from shoulders to toes. His head, however, is perfectly round, just like a Pokeball. 


Ball Guy's discomfiting silhouette presents a recurring challenge in Pokemon Sword and Shield, as he shows up throughout your journey. Every time you see him, he hands you a few Pokeballs, but don't let his niceness fool you. This is a man who willingly wears a ball-shaped mascot head, complete with unblinking eyes and a tuft of what is, presumably, hair, not to mention his paper-white skin. In some ways, Ball Guy shares a few similarities with Brutus Buckeye, the equally unsettling college mascot of Ohio State. Long story short, an anthropomorphic body doesn't pair well with an incredibly unnatural head.

Cramorant literally eats Pikachu

Rarely do we confront the harsh realities of the world of Pokemon. After all, the games appeal to children with their colorful designs and simplified gameplay. Nonetheless, we're talking about animals here, and when it comes to the animal kingdom, nature pulls no punches. Predators eat their prey to survive. Previous Pokemon games alluded to a food chain, like how Pidgeot preys on Magikarp. Sword and Shield makes you confront that concept in a more visceral way thanks to Cramorant


Cramorant hunts and eats Arrokuda, a fish Pokemon exclusive to Galar. In battle, different moves give Cramorant a chance of finding its prey, and it actually uses the "food" as a weapon. When it's been hurt, Cramorant can go as far as stuffing a Pikachu down its throat. According to the Pokedex, when it does this "Cramorant is choking a little, but it isn't really bothered." That's right, Game Freak takes its flagship mascot and turns it into food right before your eyes.