Shigeki Morimoto Reveals Why Lugia Isn't A Water-Type Pokémon

By Kim Chan , Mar 15, 2017 07:00 AM EDT

One of the most iconic figures in the entire Pokémon franchise is the legendary flying-psychic Pokémon, Lugia. The Pokémon debuted in Generation II and has since appeared in numerous franchises including in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Despite its prominence, Lugia has been misinterpreted by many and oftentimes, confused to some extent. Luckily, the Pokémon game designer, Shigeki Morimoto, reveals why Lugia is psychic rather than being a water-type Pokémon - the polar opposite of Ho-Oh's Fire typing.

Pokémon: Lugia And Ho-Oh

Ever since the release of Lugia, there has been a long debate as to why the Pokémon is flying-psychic instead of flying-water type. First and foremost, Pokémon Silver represents Lugia as "guardian of the seas" while Pokémon Gold represents Ho-Oh as "guardian of the skies." Due to the close semblance of the two legendary Pokémon, they are deemed by many as sun and moon, day and night, yin and yang, above and below, sky and seas. But despite that, Lugia was surprisingly made as a psychic. What could the reason be? Well, the Pokémon game designer finally sheds light to the most requested answer by many Pokémon lore-geeks and fans: the conception of Lugia.

Shigeki Morimoto Clarifies Lugia's Typing

In an interview by Nintendo DREAM, Shigeki Morimoto stated that the first type was decided to be "flying" since Lugia has wings and capable of flight. Next one is the highly debated "psychic" typing. According to Morimoto, during that time, psychic was the symbol of powerful Pokémon. The game designer said, "As we wanted Lugia to give the impression of being a powerful Pokemon, we settled on Psychic-type for the second type, instead of Water-type."

In short, despite being underwater, Lugia was not made a water Pokémon due to the fact that psychic, during that time, was the symbol of prestige and strength. Moreover, this source confirms that Ho-Oh was created very early in the game - possibly one of the first 190 Pokémon into the game as it was first introduced in the first episode of the anime.

Lugia, on the other hand, did not exist before the production of the second film, which was initially dubbed as Pokémon X. So technically speaking, although Pokémon Gold and Silver represent the two Pokémon as a duo, technically, they are not as they were created separately.

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