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Photo via Pokémon Sun and Moon

Depraved Pokémon fans are ‘pressing A to pound’ female characters

When did Pokémon get so horny?!


Jay Hathaway

Internet Culture

Posted on Jan 6, 2017   Updated on May 25, 2021, 6:17 am CDT

Pokémon‘s latest installment, Sun and Moon, has produced a number of good memes—the fake Harambe Pokémon, the ridiculous Alola Exeggutor—but it’s also broken new ground in terms of thirsty fans sexualizing its characters. First, they pornified a “thicc” new Pokémon researcher, and now they’re “pressing A to pound” on a bunch of the game’s female characters. 

There’s a scene in Sun and Moon where you’ve just collected four ingredients from the jungle for the Trial Master, a girl called Mallow. Now Mallow wants you to “press A to pound the ingredients.” 

Thanks to the pruriently minded posters at 4chan‘s /vg/ video games imageboard, that somehow became “press a to pound” Mallow herself. And every other woman in the game. 

That’s Lusamine, the president of the Aether Foundation for Pokémon research. Behind her is Wicke, one of the foundation’s branch heads. Ever since their character designs were released back in September, thirsty Pokémon fans have been drawing them in sexual situations (separately or together). Wicke, beloved by her coworkers for her compassionate personality, has practically been turned into a Rule 34 porn star.

Now every girl and woman in the game is getting the same treatment—and getting “pounded.”  Know Your Meme has amassed a fairly large collection of examples: 

Even actual preschoolers aren’t immune. This is where the “press A to pound” meme is at its worst:

It’s gross but unsurprising. This is the same internet that perved on kids’ show Lazytown‘s tween protagonist, Stephanie, and brought us Pedobear.

What’s more surprising is that even the Rotom Pokédex, basically your character’s smartphone with a weird Pokémon living inside it, is getting pounded: 

Different pounds for different hounds, I guess. 

The most clever uses of “press A to pound” combine it with the memes of the past. For example, the Nut Button that dominated much of 2016: 

While “press A to pound” is most definitely a creepy sexualization of a kids’ game, there’s an argument to be made that it’s not just Pokémon‘s fans who are thirsty. It’s also the game’s creators, who seem to enjoy seeing how much suggestive language they can sneak in.

In the scene where “press A to pound” emerged, Mallow’s actual dialogue asks you to grab a thick club and a rare bone, and pound your ingredients—grind it! turn it to goo!—until “a unique aroma begins to waft over the area.” 

And then Lana says, “The flavor from the rare bone seems to fill my whole mouth” 

You don’t have to be a hentai freak from the depths of 4chan to read into that a little bit. On Reddit, some are asking, “WTF Nintendo?” and noting “This game seems to have a lot of innuendos.”

And, of course, there’s the strange case of Steenee, the dominatrix Pokémon who only evolves into Tsareena when she learns “stomp”:

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So, there you have it. Pokémon’s designers didn’t ask for the kind of porn-tastic teenage-boy horniness the game has inspired, but they seem to have creatively put the “freak” in Game Freak and the S&M in Sun and Moon.

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*First Published: Jan 6, 2017, 1:12 pm CST