Irregular Crossword Clue Explanation (September 2006)

3 across: DNA fossil? (7)

Answer: OMANYTE

The shape of the DNA molecule is a double helix, and the Omanyte fossil is called the Helix Fossil.

5 across: Stop running away from me, you're really exclusive in this game. (8)

Answer: QUAGSIRE

Quagsire loves to run away from you in G/S/C, in which it is the only fully-evolved Water-type completely immune to Electric.

7 across: -'lo? (10)

Answer: FERALIGATR

Yes, extremely obscure clue - the hyphen is a minus sign, and it is referring to how Feraligatr's name lacks one L and one O from the source word 'alligator'.

11 across: One of the most favoured creations. (9)

Answer: POLIWHIRL

It is said that Poliwhirl is one of Satoshi Tajiri's favorite Pokémon (him being, of course, the creator of the franchise).

15 across: Slowpoke's worst enemies. (10)

Answer: TEAMROCKET

Team Rocket were cutting off Slowpoke tails for selling them in Slowpoke Well in G/S/C.

16 across: It's better than drugs! (9)

Answer: STARPIECE

Wild Staryu may hold Stardust or a Star Piece, of which the Star Piece is the rarer and more expensive one. Some fans have joked about Stardust being a Pokémon world drug. (The Cave of Dragonflies does not endorse the use of drugs. They mess up neurotransmitters in your brain, you know.)

17 across: I guess some young Tentacool was told it was dangerous to play with sharp things, so this was the best alternative. (9)

Answer: RAINDANCE

Hey, why would any responsible Pokémon mother let their youngsters use Swords Dance? At least water doesn't slice anybody up.

18 across: The odd spelling denounces any relation to Fire-types. (8)

Answer: QWILFISH

Cyndaquil and Quilava have 'quil' in their names, but Qwilfish's name has a W (contrary to how a Q is ordinarily always followed by a U in English words), making it evident that they are not related - not that it wasn't fairly evident already.

19 across: Bird, platypus, Japanese monster...? (7)

Answer: GOLDUCK

Golduck has 'duck' in its name, but is commonly thought to be based on a platypus, and sometimes even on a kappa monster from Japanese mythology.

21 across: Doesn't its tongue ever just freeze? (4)

Answer: SEEL

Seel always has its tongue stuck out, and living in cold environments like the Seafoam Islands, one has got to wonder...

23 across: Run, Dad, run! (8)

Answer: LUDICOLO

Ludicolo's Japanese name is Runpapa. Split it into two words and you'll see what I meant by the clue.

25 across: Can be found attached to 20 down. (8)

Answer: REDSHARD

20 down is Corsola, which may hold a Red Shard in the wild.

27 across: The first non-Water-type that learns 13 down naturally. (7)

Answer: ANORITH

13 down is Water Gun, and Anorith learns it naturally. 'First' actually refers to being the first one in the alphabet - the others are Azurill and Castform.

28 across: 23 across, 22 down and 17 across are just the thing for disco dancing, baby! (6)

Answer: MIRORB

23 across is Ludicolo, 22 down is Lombre and 17 across is Rain Dance, all of which Miror B. likes to use. For the disco part, I think we all know the connection there.

29 across: There's an H in there, but it's thankfully not a 'Hi'. (9)

Answer: MARSHTOMP

Marshtomp is most likely derived from 'Marsh' and 'Stomp', meaning there is an extra H in 'Stomp'. And eh... try for yourself to replace it with a 'Hi'.

30 across: One would almost think it should automatically become shiny on Stadium. (6)

Answer: HORSEA

There is a trick on Pokémon Stadium where nicknaming Pokémon certain things will cause them to be colored differently in the game. Most of the time the key nicknames reverse the first and second halves of the name (for example, Pinsir's secret name is SIRPIN). Horsea's name itself is created from doing a similar thing with the word 'seahorse'.

1 down: The king of 11 across? (8)

Answer: POLITOED

Poliwhirl (11 across) evolves into Politoed when traded with a King's Rock.

2 down: Stand aside - the tortoise has a new signature move. (9)

Answer: HYDROPUMP

Hydro Pump used to be pretty much Blastoise's signature move if anything was; it was what it was blasting out of those cannons, at least. However, now with the dawn of Hydro Cannon, Hydro Pump is just an ordinary, common best-move-of-type.

4 down: If you're a Water lover, this is the last you'll see of your kindly rival in battle. (7)

Answer: GROVYLE

A true Water lover probably starts with Mudkip in R/S/E, in which case his/her rival will pick Treecko. As the rival's starter never evolves to its final form in R/S/E, you'll never see Brendan or May with a Sceptile - the last time you battle, your rival will have a Grovyle as their last Pokémon.

6 down: In the place of the dead is the key to new life... (10)

Answer: SEAINCENSE

The 'place of the dead' is Mount Pyre, where the Lax and Sea Incenses can be found. They are the items that need to be attached to Wobbuffet and Marill to make their eggs hatch into Wynaut and Azurill - it's the Sea Incense rather than the Lax Incense because this is after all a Water-themed crossword.

8 down: Easter bunny? (9)

Answer: AZUMARILL

Azumarill is a rabbit, but it's egg-shaped, which also reminds you of easter.

9 down: I've had enough Magikarp; I'm heading off to Silence Bridge. (6)

Answer: OLDROD

The Old Rod will more or less only get you wild level 5 Magikarp in R/B/Y - the Super Rod which you can get on Route 12 (also known as Silence Bridge) is much better for catching Pokémon.

10 down: Yay for high tide. (10)

Answer: SHOALSHELL

On high tide, you can collect Shoal Shells in Shoal Cave.

12 down: The product of a watery fruit. (8)

Answer: LUREBALL

Kurt in G/S/C will make you a Lure Ball if you give him a Blu Apricorn - blue being a color commonly associated with water.

13 down: R/B/Y had many moves rather undeserving of TM status, and this is one of them. (8)

Answer: WATERGUN

Water Gun is R/B/Y TM12. It's a weak Water attack which nobody would really want to use seriously in late-game; I don't know why anybody would teach it to their Pokémon.

14 down: Eww, it's dirty. Just go with tradition, m'kay? (10)

Answer: MUDDYWATER

Muddy Water is basically like Surf (the most commonly used Water attack for competitive purposes - the 'tradition' referred to) except that the attack animation is brown, the accuracy is lower and it may lower the opponent's accuracy. For short, it's a dirtier version of it.

19 down: Nintendo of America apparently thinks it has a sex change when it evolves... (7)

Answer: GOLDEEN

Goldeen (derived from 'queen') evolves into Seaking... Blame Nintendo of America.

20 down: Funny it should only appear by day, since the animal it's based on is rooted to the spot. (7)

Answer: CORSOLA

Corsola is a coral, and corals can't move, so it is rather puzzling they'd appear by day but somehow disappear at night.

22 down: Red-clawed dancers in the rain. (6)

Answer: LOMBRE

Lombre have red claws, they dance on Colosseum and XD and their abilities both have to do with Rain Dance.

24 down: I think we're lucky it's not made of paper. (7)

Answer: LANTURN

That was just a reference to paper lanterns. Paper would most likely dissolve fairly quickly in the sea.

26 down: Does it have a big ego or something? (7)

Answer: STARMIE

Just look at the name... it thinks it's some sort of a superstar. Poor misled thing. =(

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