'Pokemon Gold' Beta Sprites: Leaked Demo Reveals Ditto's Scrapped Evolution
There’s a lot of weird Pokémon out there, and they’ve only gotten weirder as time goes on and the Pokémon Company needs to keep coming up with new ideas (like this ice cream-inspired creature). However, it turns out that things could have been a lot stranger, even in the early days, if the game’s creators had followed through on a few of their wilder ideas.
A demo version of the second-generation game Pokémon Gold that debuted in 1997 at Nintendo’s Space World recently leaked, and fans of the series have been poring through it to see what they can find. It turns out the file is a treasure trove of scrapped concepts that never saw the light of day (at least not in that iteration of the series), and some of them are pretty crazy.
That includes unexpected evolutions for a few Pokémon. For instance, it appears that Ditto was once slated to evolve into this unhappy-looking creature with the help of an in-game Metal Coat item. We don’t know much about the little fellow, but I’ve decided to call it Echo. One of my co-workers also suggested that the evolved version of Ditto could copy the evolved form of whatever Pokémon it was facing. So if you’re fighting a Squirtle you’d get a Wartortle.
Cool idea, right? Too bad it looked like this.
Next up is this evolved form of everyone’s favorite vegetable-carrying Pokémon, Farfetch’d. I don’t have much to say about this one except that it has some serious swag, at least based on the design.
Finally, here’s an evolved form of Weepinbell that never saw the light of day either. I’m not gonna lie, this one looks pretty weird. I don’t blame the Pokémon Company for scrapping this design when the game actually came out.
For an even more detailed look at what might have been, you can check out this fan-made spreadsheet with all the leaked info. A lot of those ideas made it into future games, including baby Pokémon versions of Mr. Mime (Mime Jr.) and a panda-inspired Pokémon that eventually became Pancham in the 6th generation of the series.