inside Pokémon anime, it’s a recurring theme for Team Rocket to steal Ash’s Pikachu using an oversized, absurdly over-engineered machine or other machine. These machines are always pretty easily defeated by actual Pokémon, but they vary greatly in their abilities, size, and how well equipped they are to handle certain Pokémon. Although Team Rocket has upgraded their Pokémon with power armor, it is the robot that is the symbol. Apparently, there isn’t even anything like it in video games, but the broader Team Rocket organization has a history of using “secret machines” in Pokémon Card Games.
The following is a list of some of the more notable machines that Team Rocket has used over the years, some of which have been tried a few times, while others have been abandoned after one failed attempt. These are not particularly successful machines; none of them are. Instead, they may have unique special abilities, be completely ridiculous in size, or look plain and simple.
10 Meowthinator Impersonators
The first is Team Rocket’s favorite: Meowthinator. Meowthinator has been built many times under many names, often with slight variations to deal with the Pokémon of the week. The first iteration (seen in “Good ‘Quil Hunting”) can shoot pieces of bubble gum from its hand, trapping the target in sticky slime making them easy to steal. Another version was reused for mining, oddly enough, and it saw many variations in Sun & Moon, including those with rocket punches and grabbing tentacles to catch Pokémon. These Meowth robots are usually controlled directly by Meowth, who may or may not be inside the robot depending on the exact version.
9 Botanical Garden
“Arbotank” is an Arbok themed tank that appeared in the episode “Tanks a Lot”. It is well equipped to deal with a variety of situations and has a giant drill for drilling through rock, as well as arms for catching Pokémon. Team Rocket wasn’t even allowed to use it, as the machine was accidentally taken over by Misty’s Togepi and narrowly headed for destruction so as not to turn into a total disaster. At least it dug a new safe tunnel to the Purple City!
8 Hyper Kingler Z . Alloy
This giant Kingler-shaped machine has a name reminiscent of the classic mechanical movement, the Mazinger Z. The Kingler machine can launch nets from its claws, as well as shoot the claws out like a bullet. It was used in the episode “Evolution Wars” to steal some Huntails and Gorebyss, but was eventually destroyed by those same Pokémon (with a little help from Pikachu, of course).
However, not every Mech Team Rocket is Pokémon themed. This mech, which looks like two bowls of ramen, has arms that are delicate enough to use chopsticks, as well as a simple net used to trap Pokémon. It was first used at the combat dojo in “Pasta la Vista!” to try to steal Hitmonchan and Hitmonlee, then reappear in “Noodles! Roamin’ Off!” where it was destroyed by Pikachu. The following episode even makes it clear that Meowth is somehow the designer of all these robots, despite having no real education in the field.
6 Metallurgical machines
This machine was named by Meowth as “Robo Baby Buggy Berry Robing Swipe the Sweets and Make Our Own Treats Octillery Mark 3”, a bit strange. Appearing in the episode “A Battle by Any Other Name!”, this machine is designed with simple pliers and vacuum tubes, intended to suck both berries and Pokémon. The machine works surprisingly well, although Ash is able to block the airflow and disable its ability to vacuum. It takes the synergy of Ash’s Pikachu, Serena’s Fennekin, and another character’s Slurpuff to defeat it. Interestingly, despite being called the Mark 3, this is the only Octillery machine that Team Rocket has ever used.
5 Air Eggs One
If a machine can look like a Pokémon, why not a Pokémon egg? Appearing in “May’s Egg-celent Adventure!”, this machine is used as a trojan horse to get inside the Pokémon hatchery. Controlled directly by Meowth, it is capable of delivering electric shocks and possesses several rubber suction cups that help cling to objects to steal. Since it carried a lot of fragile eggs it was quite difficult to fight, but the hatchery owner’s Vileplume stunned Team Rocket and destroyed the robot’s arms, rendering it useless.
4 vavoomanit marked 4
Vavoomanite Mark 4 is a Charizard-shaped robot that Team Rocket deployed in “A Fiery Rite of Passage!” Like many Rocket machines, it features a vacuum and a transparent container in the tail to hold the Pokémon it sucks in. In keeping with the Charizard theme, it also has the ability to channel the fire attacks of the captured Pokémon, making it a bit more of a threat than the regular Team Rocket machine. Though equipped to fight fires, it was eventually defeated by a Littleo trying to save a Pyroar that had been sucked inside—with Pikachu’s hand, of course. Like Octillery, there is no Mark 1, 2 or 3, although Meowth implies so in the episode.
This mechanical Pokémon appears in the episode of the same name, apparently borrowing a lot of the plot from King Kong. Team Rocket used the machine to rule over monkey-like Pokémon in the jungle, making them harvest large amounts of fruit and berries, as well as steal items from passersby, all to please the king. their new. This episode is where Ash meets his Aipom for the first time, and his good relationship with it has allowed him to get the Pokémon to turn on fake Slaking and destroy it. This machine may have come closest to actually killing someone, as it fell on May from a great height while recreating the famous kidnapping scene from the movie.
2 Illusion Machines
The machine seen in “Fear Factor Phony” is interesting in that its abilities are integrated with the abilities of some of the wild ghost Pokémon that Team Rocket has allied with, making it appear as if it were a giant Haunted One. With so many ghost Pokémon completely twisted, this makes it a truly terrifying sight. Fighting against some of the Psychic types they hoped to steal, the machine sucked them all up, but Wobbuffet eventually released its fellow Psychic Pokémon. Although the machine was designed to withstand Psychic and Electrical attacks, it was not prepared for a Ghost-type attack that responded to it, which destroyed it.
One of Team Rocket’s most unique machines is the “Piprinoleon”, a strange combination of features from Piplup and its later development, appearing in “Stopped in the Name of Love! ” Always a themed device, this machine was actually built with the intention of stealing Piplup, Prinplup, and Empoleon. Unlike its inspiration, Piprinoleon is fairly resistant to Pikachu’s Electric attacks, redirecting attacks to the Pokémon caught inside. It had grips as well as tank grooves to allow all-terrain escape, but it was eventually destroyed when Dawn’s Piplup got inside it and used the whirlpool to short-circuit the controls. .
With Ash’s time in prominence running out, it’s likely that these eccentric cyborgs will disappear as well. While Team Rocket’s weird machines may have been pretty much abused in the Hoenn and Sinnoh eras of Pokémonthey are now definitely a memorable part of the anime and radically expand the kind of plot Team Rocket could come up with – which was absolutely essential at the time in the series.