The entire premise of Pokemon is a bit odd.
Capture wild animals that roam the land by throwing a round electronic equivalent of Aladdin's lamp at them, then pit them against other creatures to try and catch them all. Obsessively. It's kooky, to say the least.
But, things move into WTF?!? territory when you start to explore the Pokedex in detail.
Marvelling over the timeless design of a Pikachu or a Marill, you'll occasionally stumble across a Pocket Monster that, frankly, should not be allowed to exist. Pokemon that are so bafflingly bizarre that it would turn even the hardiest Lovecraftian hero utterly mad, just at their very sight.
Okay, that was a slight exaggeration, but they do make for what should hopefully be an amusing article on Pocket Gamer. Let's begin...
Ten Question Marks
We'll start things off slowly. Ten Question Marks is a Pokemon that doesn't exist. Except that it does exist. But, it doesn't exist.
You can only really obtain Ten Question Marks through the use of game-altering devices such as a GameShark, for, technically, it takes up the - theoretically unreachable - 0000th position in the Pokedex.
Its reason for being there in the first place is to thwart game-breaking bugs, so its inclusion is most definitely not an accident by the programmers. Rather, it's a fail-safe mechanism to ensure the game runs without a hiccup.
It begs the question, though: does it really count as a Pokemon? You're not meant to be able to see it, (though it is included by design), yet it has its own set of moves, description, and an accompanying image in battles. These mind-boggling quandaries upon the nature of existence make us go 'WTF?!?', so, regardless, it definitely makes this list.
There are no two ways about it - Rapidash is a horse that's on fire.
Its head, back, and legs all appear to have gigantic flames spewing out of them, surely making the riding of it a proper hassle. You can imagine having to wear a thick, heat-resistant full body suit just to mount the thing and take it out for a trot.
If there's one thing it does offer its human masters, though - other than being super-effective against grass types - it's that it must help make some really awesome heavy metal front covers in Pokemon World.
All that a band like Night PokeRanger would need to do is capture one of these beauties, have it run through some fog, and get Todd Snap to do his business. Easy! Still weird, mind.
Regice is one of the Legendary Golem of Hoenn, and its body is entirely made of ice found at the South Pole. Yes, you read that right: entirely made of ice.
There are plenty of creatures made of weird things in the series, but this is frozen water we're talking about here. That glass of water you're drinking? Could be a Pokemon.
The baths PocketGamer.biz news editor Keith Andrew luxuriates in when staying in fancy hotels? Could be a Pokemon. The ice cubes in this refreshing beverage I'm sipping? Could be a Pokemon.
Quite literally almost anything in Hoenn could be a Pokemon because of Regice, and that's just not... cool.
To be fair, both Trubbish and Vanillite would have worked just as well for this entry. Litwick comes from the "look around the house for inspiration" school of design at Game Freak, what with it being an animal that has naturally evolved to look like a half-melted candle.
Oh, and did I mention that it feeds off the energy of humans?
Half-antiquated lighting device, half-waxy Dracula, it lulls its victims into a false sense of security by pretending to guide them through dark corridors, all the while leeching... I dunno... life force or something... out of the poor saps.
This is why whenever I catch a Litwick, I instantly nickname it "Shamdelier" to remind myself. Better safe than sorry, after all.
On an equally creepy note, Cubone is perhaps the darkest type of Pokemon. Apart from the Dark-type Pokemon, obviously.
Because Cubone has been part of the series since the beginning, many of you will have simply come to accept that it is brandishing a bone as a weapon and wearing a skull for a helmet. Fewer players will remember that the skull is that of its mother.
Yeah, that's messed up when you think about it, isn't it? How exactly did every Cubone in the game end up with the ex-head of its ex-parent? Coincidence? Not a chance. I suspect foul play.
According to Nintendo, it's part of the Lonely Pokemon species. And I'm not surprised - it's probably a murderer.
Stupid Spoink. Just look at it! It's a blushing grey pig with a pink pearl on its head, whose legs have been replaced by a spring like Zebedee from The Magic Roundabout.
If it stops bouncing, it'll die, since the motion of bobbing about keeps its blood pumping. Spoink is also softer than a Mister Softee soft scoop ice cream, served on a pillow, at the height of summer. Rubbish.
For those keeping track, this is of course the other type of bad Game Freak design philosophy.
It would seem that whenever the company's out of ideas, it writes random words on Post-it Notes, sticks them on a wall, and throws darts at said surface to decide what features a particular Pokemon will have.
For another classic example of this revolutionary technique, see Raikou.
This one's just disgusting. This otherwise sweet-looking ice bear has a massive and constant lump of snot hanging from its nose.
It doesn't drip off completely, no one wipes it off his schnoz - it just hangs there, like a disgusting pendulum on a grandfather clock of gross.
Oh, but even better than that, Cubchoo uses the mucus as a weapon. It sucks up the fluid and fires it back at its opponents. You know, like Beavis and Butthead did off of roofs, only directly in the faces of other Pokemon.
The worse thing is that you can't really get mad at it. Firstly, because it's otherwise completely adorable. Secondly, because it evolves into Beartic. And you do not mess with something that can become a Beartic.
Hooray for offensive stereotypes!
You can argue about whether Ludicolo is a caricature of Mexican culture, but you can't deny that Jynx's original design strikes an uncanny resemblance to the "black minstrels" of the late 19th century.
Happily, its appearance was retconned within the franchise, i.e. its skin was changed to a slightly less racist purple colour. A good thing, since otherwise you may as well just change Jynx's name to Mr. Popo and be done with it.
Still, the damage has already been done, and this psychic-type monstrosity deserves, perhaps more than any other, to be on any self-respecting top ten most WTF?!? Pokemon list.
You really have to question what the creators were thinking when they gave the initial design a thumbs-up.
Is there any animal in nature that naturally has two heads? No, of course there isn't.
In the lands of Kanto, Johto, Hoenn, and Sinnoh, however, there is a bird with three distinct and totally separate bonces.
Which one decides which way to go? Do they all say "Dodrio" in exactly the same way? Are they three times smarter than any of the other avian species in the games?
Perhaps more disturbing, though, is that it evolves from Doduo, a Pokemon with 'only' two heads. So, does it just grow another perfectly formed skull, brain, and beak because it can? Why does it think it's so special that it needs three?
For these questions, I have no answers. They're just freaks, as far as I can tell.
You see where I'm headed with this, don't you?
I hope so, because otherwise there's something quite Freudian going on in with me here. Cloyster looks like a, well, a clam, of sorts.
Okay, let's not beat around the bush here: it bears more than a passing resemblance to a particular piece of female anatomy. Only with more spikes.
Admittedly, I'm not saying it's a super-accurate depiction of a hoo-hoo, but the curiously placed outcrop near its top, the folds of its shell, and the overall shape of it suggest that some game artist is sneaking in a bit of animated naughtiness into a beloved gaming franchise.
Or maybe it doesn't look anything like what I'm suggesting. Maybe, I've just gone a bit odd. It's past midnight, and I've been pouring over pictures and descriptions of nearly 650 Pokemon for dangerously close to five hours now. That'd make anyone slightly crazy.