Pokémon Fusion, also simply known as Pokéfusion, refers to the fan art practice of splicing the sprites of two or more creatures from the Nintendo video game franchise Pokémon to create a new hybrid character either through hand-drawing or web-based generators.
The concept of creating a hybrid character has been illustrated through Pokemon fan art since as early as November 2008 with a contest hosted by the Kongregate message board to see who could create the best fused sprite out of Pokemon creatures in canon. The winning submission (shown below) incorporated various features from Infernape, Giratina, Metang, Articuno and Alakazam.
In February 2009, a thread for Pokemon Fusion fan art appeared on the Nintendo fan community Nintendopeeps. In December of that year, a Pokefusion flash animation was shared on the MIT Scratch community, which depicted a Darkrai, a Cubone and a Charizard fusing into a new creation. In January 2010, a fan artist who goes by the handle Kurcio showcased a number of hand-drawn hybrid sprites on Soul Boards. By May 2010, a number of Kurcio's works had been uploaded to deviantART. In July, the deviantART group #PokemonSplicers launched, becoming the first Pokefusion-specific fan group, and in August, a second group labeled #FUSE-Corp was created. As of May 2013, the two groups have nearly 650 members between them and there are more than 18,000 search results for “Pokemon Fusion” on deviantART. In addition, similar fan art threads dedicated to Pokefusion also have surfaced on 4chan, Pokememes and Tumblr. A subreddit was created for the trope in May 2011.
Pokemon Fusion Generator
On August 8th, 2010, web developer Alex Onsager launched the Pokemon Fusion Generator, which fuses the body and shape of the first selected Pokemon with the color and face of the second. It also blends the names, yielding a new character. It was first advertised on the Psypoke forums by a friend of Onsager's. Throughout September, the generator and its creations were discussed on the message boards of Blockland, IGN, Newgrounds, GameFAQs and the Escapist. As of May 2013, 121 Pokemon have been added to the generator, but Onsager intends to add all of the original 151 Pokemon.
Pokemon Fusion Generation Game
On October 5th, 2012, YouTuber VvElectrovertvV uploaded a trailer (shown below) for a fan made game based on fusion creatures. The game was released in November 2012, after which updates were made available to fans via the game's official Tumblr. By January 6th, 2013, the game had reached 1,000 downloads. As of May 2013, the game is consistently being updated.
On June 6th, 2019, Tumblr user ijustreallylikeeevee made a post stating "Whatever pokemon appears when you load Pokéfusion is now your government assigned starter." The user got "Venuew," a mix of Venusaur and Mew, and the post gaining over 37,000 notes.
On June 23rd, the post was screenshot and posted to Twitter, and users there began posting their "government-assigned starters." Examples include a post by user @kirstonnn which got a mix of Eevee and Mew ("Eew"), gaining over 210 retweets and 1,300 likes (shown below, left), and a post by @Ryans_Buffet which combined a Dragonair and Nintetales ("Dragontales") that gained over 170 retweets and 1,200 likes (shown below, right).
The popularity of posts such as these inspired others to begin posting Pokéfusion edits without the prompt. Many of these used sexual innuendo; for example, user @heartlesspumpkin posted a combination of Squirtle and Nidoqueen to get "Squirtqueen," gaining over 820 retweets and 3,400 likes (shown below, left) and user @leyawn posted a combination of Blastoise and Charmelon called "Blastmeleon" with the caption "girls keep saying this to me" ("Blast-Me-Leon"), gaining over 830 retweets and 11,000 likes (shown below, right). The resurgence was covered by the Daily Dot.