This tower is component of a series where Verge staffers post highly subjective evaluate of animals. Up until now, we’ve written about animals without informing you whether they suck or rule. We are now rectifying this oversight.

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As of critical weekend, Pokemon is two decades old, which method franchise mascot Pikachu is also 20 years old. Like countless of the personalities in the game, Pikachu is loosely motivated by real-life pets — in this case, the pika (genus Ochotona). The translate is loose, leaving out several of the most badass attributes of the pika.

Maybe it’s unfair to compare a corporeal creature through a cartoon caricature, yet today, that’s what I"m doing.


Appearance: On average, the American pika is 7 come 8 inch tall and also weighs up to 0.35 kilograms. In contrast, every Pikachu is exactly 1 foot, 4 customs tall and weighs 6 kilograms, closer in scale to a domestic house cat. The pika has adorably soft fur; a Pikachu’s coat is of questionable softness. Still, the Pikachu is qualified of stand on that hind legs and also emoting sadness with its anime-like eyes. Advantage: Pikachu

Habitat: Pikas are indigenous to cold climates in Asia, phibìc America, and parts of east Europe. They commonly can be uncovered on rocky mountainsides. A Pikachu in the wild is yes, really only discovered in high grass, often near a forest. No contest here. Advantage: pika

Longevity: Many pikas deserve to live increase to 7 years. The lifespan of a Pikachu, meanwhile, is unknown. However, yes at least one reported circumstances of a tamed Pikachu living because that over 900 episodes (approximately 19 years). Advantage: Pikachu

The pika is supervisor effective against both grass and fire types

Survivability: As an electric type, the Pikachu is at sight effective versus water and flying types (though ineffective against grass types and dragons). Pikas, meanwhile, space super effective against both grass (by merit that being full time herbivores) and also even fire types — one study confirmed that the American pika is surprisingly durable to wildfires. (I’ve seen a Charmander take on Pikachu, and also believe me, it wasn’t pretty.) The pika has also been recognized to consume birds once necessary and also has outwitted the Chinese government for over 50 years. Major advantage: pika

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(Sergey Yeliseev/Flickr)

Portability: despite the dimension difference, a Pikachu is able to fit comfortably into poké balls, which a human being trainer can then bring in a tiny bag. Even if a pika to be to fit into a poké ball, it would not it is in recommended. Advantage: Pikachu

Biodiversity: There are around 30 known varieties of Ochotona current today, and also their ancestors have the right to be traced earlier as much as the Miocene period (between 23 million and also 5 million years ago). The Pikachu, however, have actually no record of diversity whatsoever. What would take place if a Pikachu it s okay sick and no one was there to help? their only means of evolution is v friendship and the rare Thunder stone.

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major advantage: pika

Fighting ability: APikachu have the right to harness the strength of lighting and is how amazing adept at an easy hand-to-hand combat. Pikas are very good at hiding. Advantage: Pikachu

Communication: This one’s a tie. Cursed they’re cute:

So where does the leave ours contest? It’s tough to look at a loyal friend like a Pikachu and say, "Sorry buddy, your ability to understand human being language and create lightning isn’t enough to be the very best." and yet, that’s what ns doing. Though Pikachu is exceptional in its very own right, it’s no complement for that real-life counterpart.