Early this morning a live streaming Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire event took place. It was seven hours, from 5am to 12pm where I am, and it was incredibly boring. The vast majority of the event was essentially a Pokémon Ruby/Sapphire LP, with some pseudo-new footage of Pokémon OR/AS. I say “pseudo-new” because, while a lot of it we had never seen footage of before, it was still in areas that we’ve seen screenshots for, and really wasn’t all that exciting. Though I will admit it was probably a lot more fun if you understood any of what was being said.

There was one highlight to the event. In an announcement that surprised absolutely no-one, a wild Mega Rayquaza appeared. But it’s not wild, and that already sets it apart from Primal Kyoger and Primal Groudon. As we saw soon after the games were first announced, Kyoger and Groudon’s new forms are not exactly mega evolutions, they’re “Primal” forms. One obvious distinction of this is that the two don’t need the Mega Ring or a trainer to bond with them in order to change forms. But in Rayquaza’s case Pokémon has been clear, this is a Mega Evolution. Not a Primal Form. And Mega Rayquaza’s design reflects that.

Rayquaza mega evolving

While Primal Kyoger and Ground were seen by fans as a type of mega evolution initially, they really don’t look like it. Functionally, primal forms change the two mascot legendries up a lot, with new abilities, a new type for Groudon, and one confirmed stat buff for Kyoger. But in terms of design the only differences are that the primal forms are now big enough to launch an Attack on Titan and they got a new paint job. M Rayquaza on the other hand is a lot more like what we’ve seen from mega evolutions. The main concept of the pokémon remains the same, but reimagined and with some new elements. In Rayquaza’s case, the basic concept is a serpentine dragon, with a few bands down its body with spikes on them. M Rayquaza is a reimagining of this, sleeker, with some translucent streamers and protrusions under its chin that look like the sides of an ancient Roman helmet. And frankly, I’m not a big fan of the design.Emerald Rayquaza Roar   I certainly don’t dislike it, but it really loses a lot of Rayquaza’s presence on the battlefield. Rayquaza is a dragon, one that sleeps in the sky, and only bothers coming down to deal with the puny morals below when they start making too much of a ruckus and disturb its nap. M Rayquaza on the other hand, looks like a snake, not a dragon. The picture I chose probably makes this obvious enough, but I’ll admit it anyway, it’s mostly nostalgia making me think this. But Pokémon remakes exist for the nostalgic; most of us who will get these games played Ruby and Sapphire as kids, and are more psyched about re-experiencing that than we are about playing anything new. So yeah, I’ll wear my nostalgia goggles for this, just like I’d wear red and blue tinted glasses at a 3D movie.

Now onto something about M Rayquaza I can always get behind, Stat boosts. According to pokemonrubysapphire.com, upon mega evolving Rayquaza gets increases in almost all of its stats, including Atk and Sp.Atk. Both of Rayquaza’s attack stats are already base 150, so making those even higher is just crazy, and game breaking, and Pokémon’s gone mad, and it’s awesome, and I love it! They specifically same almost all of its other stats, which means there’s probably just one –maybe two– stats that don’t get boosted. My best guess is that ‘s speed doesn’t change, because after the announcement there was a short 3 v 3 battle to show off M Rayquaza’s power. (It completely swept, killing everything with one hit each.) The first pokémon it fought in this battle was a Charizard which immediately mega evolved to Mega Charizard Y; this was likely chosen to show off M Rayquaza’s new ability, which I’ll get to later. In that battle, M Charizard Y still out sped M Rayquaza. Rayquaza’s base speed is surprising low for such a powerful flying type at 95, and M Charizard Y’s is five points high than that at 100. Assuming these pokémon had equivalent EVs and IVs, M Rayquaza speed stat couldn’t be increased very much from Rayquaza’s, and so was likely not increased at all. I would say that this was an attempt to make M Rayquaza a little frail and keep the game balanced, but after looking at its ability, it’s clear that balancing it was not on the agenda.

M Rayquaza’s ability is called Delta Storm. (What’s with all these Greek letters? Pokemon Gamma/Omicron versions confirmed!) It causes a strong wind weather condition that boosts the power of flying type moves, makes moves that are strong against flying types only do normal damage, and cannot be overwritten by moves like Sunny Day or abilities like Snow Warning, and the effect lasts when, and only when, M Rayquaza is on the field. On pokemonrubysapphire.com it does say that there are exceptions to abilities not being able to dispel it, and those would likely be Primal Groudon’s Desolate Land and Primal Kyogers Primordial Sea.

So, Mega Rayquaza’s a thing. Here’s some more things; Flygon, Dusknoir, Seviper, Zangoose. These are some pokémon seen in the Omega Ruby Alpha Sapphire art gallery on pokemon.com. Now that Rayquaza’s been addressed, these are the only pokémon in that gallery that don’t have mega evolutions. They’re also my predictions for new megas. What about you guys? What do you think of Mega Rayquaza? Did you watch the event? Comment below; let’s chat.

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