Eevee — The Startup Pokémon
About two years ago, I came across a question on Quora, ““Which Pokémon is most like a successful startup?”
We got some decent replies such as Magikarp, a useless Pokémon that transforms into the powerful Gyarados. Or an extremely funny one like, “Cloyster, because it gets acquired by Slowbro or Slowking.”
Shellder, not Cloyster, are the ones that get acquired though. Cloyster are more like those that IPOed successfully.
Today, let’s go for a more interesting question, “Which Pokémon is most like a startup?
The ONE and only CORRECT answer should be Eevee, the small cute Normal Pokémon from the 1st generation.
Why? Let the nerd in me explain.
Reason 1: It was one of a kind…
… until it used to be one of a kind.
Just like startups moving from being unique to being the best clones, Eevee used to be very very special. In generation 1, you can only find one Eevee throughout the whole game and you can’t breed for more.
One a side note, breeding is pretty similar to cloning. You basically get the same Pokémon/product, with some variations (different stats/competitive advantages, different moves/features).
Reason 2: It’s a Normal type.
It might be one of a kind in Gen 1, but being a Normal Pokémon also means it is among the 2nd most common type (only after Water type). The first Pokémon a trainer encounters is likely a Rattata or a Pidgey. Just like the 95% of startups which can’t manage to stand out and soon are forgotten by users.
Also a gently reminder that before you succeed, you are just another Normal-type.
Let’s just be happy Eevee is not that Poison/Flying type that haunts users darkest moment.
Reason 3: It has great potential and can pivot to many directions.
Eevee is the first Pokémon that change its type after evolution. And it does not have just one option.
It can go for one of the three evolutions in Gen 1 (Water, Fire, Electric). It gains two more in Gen 2 (Psychic and Dark), two more in Gen 4 (Grass and Ice), and another in Gen 6 (Fairy).
In total, we have 8 different ones, which the fans call Eeveelutions.
A startup that tells everyone they have so many good options to go might not be that good of a startup. Having 8 choices can also be a bad thing for Eevee. Ask Twitch Plays Pokémon.
Reason 4: It needs the right conditions to become great.
Eevee also sets itself from the rest by requiring specific conditions to evolve. Grinding only won’t take you far unless you go the right direction.
In Gen 1, it needs one of the three evolution stones, Water to become Vaporeon, Fire to become Flareon, and Electric Jolteon. The evolution stones might as well be an analogy to exclusive technologies.
In Gen 2, it needs to be LOVED by its trainer (which is just another way to call its USER). Leveling up during daytime with max happiness, you get the Sun Pokémon Espeon, during nighttime, the Moon Pokémon Umbreon.
Gen 4 requires Eevee to be at certain areas to get to its two new Eeveelutions, near a grassy rock for Leafeon, and an icy one for Glaceon. Like startups that need the right MARKET to grow.
And with Gen 6, comes the Fairy Sylveon, evolved through love and guidances/harasses by its users.
Reason 5: Eeveelutions help showcase new features.
Well, startups just can’t shut up about innovations. And Eevee can’t stop trying to promote the new features every generation.
Gen 1: Evolution stones. Also the evolution paths.
Gen 2: Night-day cycle and happiness-based evolution. Also help introduce the Dark-type.
Gen 4: Location-based evolution.
Gen 6: Help introduce the brand new type, Fairy.
Reason 5a: Eeveelutions do not just show something new. They are disruptors.
Psychic-type is too powerful in Gen 1. Enter the Dark-type immune to and super effective against Psychic, introduced via Umbreon and its Dark followers in Gen 2.
Dragon-type is flooding the market of Gen 5? Enter Fairy Pokémon in Gen 6, the first revealed being the cute dragon-slaying Sylveon.
And did I mention Eevee helped promote evolutions through happiness in Gen 2? They can’t grow successfully without loving their users.
I meant, trainers.
Reason 6: Eeveelutions are diverse.
A full team of them are no way the best team. They are diverse enough though, and each can fit very well into different teams or support each other.
The hyper offensive Glaceon and Leafeon.
The offensive/lead Jolteon.
The offensive/utility/anti-lead Espeon.
The support/tank Vaporeon, Umbreon, and Sylveon.
And the forgotten one.
Reason 7: They have the potentials. They always promise more…
… though we might as well assume they will never deliver. Given how it has been going, there is that possibility that eeveelution family will include all 17 types.
Still, just be honest to yourselves, it won’t happen until Generation 20 or later, which is also quite near the end of time. Not all investments for a vaguely hopeful future would be worth it.
However, don’t forget they did grant us with Sylveon. Drageon can’t be too far away from reality, right?
Reason 8: It’s Eevee.
Eevee is the only Pokémon under the Evolution category, which explains its tie to innovative methods of evolution. Which Pokémon can better demonstrate changes and growths but Eevee?
If I still can’t convince you, check this: Before evolution, Eevee has three possible abilities.
or Run Away
Just like, well, you know what I want to say.
I don’t think any other Pokémon resembles a startup more.
P.S. The scariest thing to me is that I did not need to use Google or Wiki as references to write this article, except to look for images.