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- Not to be confused with Pokémorph, a different term, based off of the Animorphs book series, for humans that turn into Pokémon.
A Pokémorph (sometimes called anthro-pokémon or Poké(a)thropes) is the term used for a fictional anthropomorphic species of Pokémon. Most Pokémorphs resemble normal furries, except that they were created based on the stock Pokémon creatures. Commonly known as the combination of a Pokemon and a human.
The type naming for these types of creatures sometimes is simplified to the species-morph format. Although it does not make them easy to identify, they are more commonly seen with this kind of descriptor when it comes to describing what they are. This however, would be moot since the chances of someone not knowing what species they are would be rather low.
Pokémorphs, furries, and people
As a general rule, not all people with Pokémorph characters are furries. In point of fact, these people play such characters out of a kind of fandom for the video game they were based on. As such, unless a person with such a character says they are a furry, they should not be considered to be a furry. To them, it is more of an interest in the subject and fandom of the game which is thought of as separate from the furry fandom, although there are some with Pokémorph characters who are actually furries and also have separate furry characters. In some general consensus, the number of actual furs with such characters is low, though this is not confirmed and is subject to shifting even lower, or higher as time passes.
Pokémorphs in furry culture
Pokémorphs are usually featured in fictional stories, art (some of which is adult in nature), and also in multiplayer worlds. Currently, there are at least four MU*s which feature Pokémorph characters: Pokémorph MUSH, Pokémon World MUCK, Pokémon Fusion and Pokémon Slide.
Creation and Backstory
Many sources concerning Pokémorphs agree that they are the result of humans playing God through genetic experimentation (such as the kind that created Mewtwo). This experimentation could sometimes be a simple experiment on egg cells, or a very painful process of replacing parts of a Pokémon's DNA with that of a human and forcing the strands to bond and function. As the process continues, more DNA is altered in such a way, which is a very painful experience for the Pokémon in particular. This pain is not just limited to the injections of the gene altering chemicals and new DNA strands, it is most noticeably from the changes in the subject's physical body as the mutations start to take effect. This kind of pain is inhumane and the subject often loses its sense of identity and memory in the process because of the pain and genetic mutations altering its brain.
This process is not just limited to Pokémon. It has been done on humans as well, with similarly painful results. The procedure used on humans uses genetic mutators directly opposite that for normal Pokémon and has been sometimes called reverse morphing. When compared, a Pokémorph created from a Pokémon is measured as more powerful than one created from a human. Yet in general, a Pokémorph is more versatile and adaptive than their non-morphed counterparts. They can use more attacks, are faster, can learn human languages and also speak in their species' own native language, and most of all fight better than their non-morphed counterparts.
This unnatural and horrific transformation is often blamed on Team Rocket, a criminal organization in the video games that seeks to rule the world through the use of Pokémon as simple tools or fighting machines. In fact, many storylines put this group as the direct creators of Pokémorphs through their genetic laboratories with the intention of using them as their new class of agents and strictly as fighting machines for their cause.
Their treatment of Pokémorphs is generally horrific. After morphing, the subject is usually taken to a training center where they are horribly abused physically or starved till they speak nothing but English. When it comes to combat, the abuse becomes more physical at the hands of the Team Rocket members, leaving emotional scarring on many morphs as well as physical ones. Because of this mistreatment, some stories have the Pokémorphs harboring a hatred of humans. Others that don't involve Team Rocket are more neutral, but the general relationship between a morph and a human is an uneasy one.
Another theory for how Pokémorphs can come into existence is one of pure evolution. Much in the way common ancestors of man and ape diverged to create these two different species, so too can common ancestors of, say, a Flareon and Flareon-Morph diverge but remain similar, to create two heads of the same coin. Pokémorphs can generally be assumed to have somewhat weaker abilities then their nonmorphic counterparts, but at the same time are far more adaptable due to their ability to use tools, making up for their weakened elemental/power state with adaptability and technology.
This tends not to be as dramatic or angst-filled an explanation for how they came into being, however, and tends not to be used by fanfiction writers and the such. PokeWorld MUCK uses a version of this theory of Pokémorph development to allow for wild, semi-sentient nonmorphic, and fully anthropomorphic Pokémon to exist side by side.
One other lesser explored theory touched upon in some stories, such as in Mike2115's story Pokémorph Virus, is the idea that Pokémorphism originates from a virus spread by an unknown origin, after it had been kept away from the world for centuries, back in a time when Pokémorphs were commonplace. The virus goes airborne and infects Pokémon, with what seems like a form of rabies or the RAGE virus in the zombie horror film 28 Days Later.
When infected, the Pokémon are quickly turned feral, and they are prone to attacking humans more than normally. They aim to infect the human by biting or scratching the victim. The wounds caused by the infected Pokémon transfers the virus, which has now adapted to mirror the DNA of the Pokémon.
When the infection enters a human body, it normally takes several hours before the process of change begins. The change is slow and painful, as first the body is sent into what appears to be flu-like symptoms. After these symptoms pass and the immune system is weakened, the virus takes full effect, and strikes the DNA directly. It begins to manipulate the DNA to that of the Pokémon, but leaves the remaining human strands to create a human to Pokémorph change, in a form of reverse transformation. The human body begins to change into the Pokémon that gave the infection, and gains that Pokémon's attributes, while generally maintaining the human mind.
After the physical changes pass, the body goes into comatose, and the mental abilities such as enhanced senses and other chemical procedures in the body are changed, such as the addition of a heat cycle in females. The brain adapts to be able to understand some Pokémon speech, depending on the morph.
Once the body is half changed into the originally infected Pokémon, the human- now Pokémorph, awakens after their body has a chance to recharge after the intensive changes. Generally, this takes from four to eight hours of sleep. When awakened, the human will be sentient, and as they adapt further, skills and attacks are learned. Depending on the capabilities, some or all of the host Pokémon moves can be learned at a time, yet is not limited to four.
In the world of Pokémon Fusion, Pokémorphs are instead a manifestation of a deep bond between a trainer and their pokémon that allows them to fuse. Fusion is the physical joining of an individual and their pokémon, creating one being sharing traits from both. For fusion to be possible, a person and their pokémon much have a bond, a connection of some sort. Usually this only comes about once the person and their pokémon have known each other for a time and know each other well. In rare instances, fusion can occur during states of extremely high emotion, such as ones lift being in danger. Even if there is not a deep bond, if both person and pokémon are in a heightened state, it is possible for fusion to occur.
There are two types of fusion, temporary and permanent. Temporary, as the name implies, is a fusion that can be undone. The pokémon will become part of the human, but will return when the fusion is undone. This fusion is not as strong as a permanent one. Permanent fusions can not be undone. The pokémon will forever be a part of the human. Some people can still shift between their human and fusion form. There is not a limit to permanent fusion, as one can have multiple pokémon within them and be able to choose the form of any. However, the more pokémon one has in their mind, the more confused ones mind might become.
When some people fuse, the human is in control while the pokémon's mind sleeps. In others, the pokémon is in control. For some, they have a voice in their head or their personality is a combination of both. Those who have practiced can allow their pokémon to take control sometimes while they are in control at other times. Since fusion was discovered, some 'natural fusions' have been born. They are fusions who were born as they are, due to one or more of their parents being a fusion. While it is possible, most natural born fusions do not have a human form. Natural born fusions can, however, fuse with other pokémon and seem to be, biologically, the same as permanent fusions.