Eevee Originally Had A Different Name That Makes Way More Sense

Eevee Originally Had A Different Name That Makes Way More Sense
Image: OLM/The Pokémon Company

An apparent leak of Pokémon’s generation one localisation data last week revealed some surprising facts about the Pokémon franchise. According to a Twitter account known for leaks, not only did the data unveil a cancelled game titled Pokémon: Pink, it also unveiled an early, much better name for Eevee.

This article has been updated since its original publication.

The source code leak was detailed by Dr. Lava’s Lost Pokemon, a Twitter account dedicated to reporting facts about the Pokémon franchise and widely considered legitimate. Kotaku Australia has not been able to verify the source code independently.

According to Dr. Lava, Eevee’s original name in early localisation efforts was ‘Eon’. While this name has been rumoured for some time, the data leak appears to confirm it.

The ‘Eon’ name would also line up perfectly with Eevee’s original evolutions — Jolteon, Vaporeon and Flareon. Instead of this naming convention, localisers went with ‘Eevee’, a name which means ‘life’. It’s unclear why this change was made.

In addition, a secondary Dr. Lava account unveiled a rare early poster for Pokémon, which was previously considered a fake due to spelling errors. Here, Eevee carries the ‘Eon’ name, lending credibility to some of the other names on the poster.

Image: @DrLavaYT/Twitter

As you can see here, some names are correct, like Geodude — but others are completely different. Tentacool here is ‘Jilly’, while Tentacruel is ‘Manowar’ and Victreebel is shortened to ‘Victree’.

While no source for the poster is confirmed, Dr. Lava’s secondary account notes that it is a pre-release poster from the 90s. According to multiple Twitter users, many of the names on this poster match their Japanese equivalent — implying that these may have been the early, localised names of the first generation of Pokémon.

Other gems in this collection include Jigglypuff being called ‘Pudding’, Machop being simply known as ‘Karate’ and the Abra/Kadabra/Alakazam trio originally being named ‘Hocus’, ‘Pocus’ and ‘Alakaza’.

While the legitimacy of these names is yet to be confirmed, it’s strange to think of what might’ve been.

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  • I feel like “Jilly” is actually meant to be Jelly because the way that the Japanese make sounds that don’t fit their alphabet is to add a smaller version of the katakana/hiragana character after the main sound. So Je, would actually be ‘Ji’ followed by a smaller ‘e’ and pronounced as ‘Jye’. If the localisers omitted the ‘e’ then it would have read “Jiri”, or once you put an ‘l’ in for the ‘r’, Jili.

    Still, it shows we’ve come a long way in translation with higher accuracy and less corruption of the original scripts these days. Or not, a lot of translations are still a mess. *Looks at Treehouse*

  • The Japanese name for eevee is イーブイ (Iibui/Eevee)
    Vaporeon is シャワーズ (Shawaazu/Showers)
    Flareon is ブースター (Buusutaa/Booster)

    Eevee and its evolution names never made sense

  • Instead of this naming convention, localisers went with ‘Eevee’, a name which means ‘life’. It’s unclear why this change was made.
    To me it seems pretty easily understandable as to why the name was changed. Trademark.
    Every Pokemon name is trademarked under the Pokemon brand. To ensure those trademarks, the names cannot be actual words, which “Eon” is.

  • So, what exactly was updated on 22/10/2020?
    See a few articles just getting republished with no real changes.

    If there are changes, it would be nice if there was a note as to what.

    • Nothing that I can see. Pedestrian just republishes these articles occasionally as doing so improves their search engine rankings and attracts extra click throughs, in this case, from Pokemon fans.

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