Posted: June 2, 2022 | Updated: June 3, 2022

GTS Action! PokeTimes Bidoof

Who let the ‘Doofs out? Who, who, who, who! I’ll tell you who did. PokeTimes!

I, for one, was delighted to see our Pokémon overlords continue to run with the meme potential of Bidoof. First, its starring role in The Pokémon Company‘s wholly unexpected yet masterful Bidoof-themed parody of Never Gonna Give You Up that, I’m sure, rickrolled every last Pokéfan on the planet. Then, the spotlight in the tear-jerking adventures of an underappreciated old-school “HM Slave”. And now, in the latest instalment of Bidoof Conquers the World, the release of a herd of officially-sanctioned derpy rodents onto the GTS. It sure is a great time to be a Pokéfan.

Without further ado, below the petite story of Pokémon’s latest homage to the franchise’s derpiest mascot.

When Pokémon HOME 2.0’s update landed in May 2022, it introduced long-anticipated Pokétransfer compatibility with latest entries to the franchise Brilliant Diamond / Shining Pearl (BDSP) and Pokémon Legends: Arceus (PLA). At long last, our ribbon masters would be able to enter these games and earn the latest accolades. And (shiny) Mythicals like Shaymin, Darkrai and Arceus would be able to come out in anticipation of new adventures elsewhere. To celebrate the occasion, the HOME app gifted players a suite of Sinnoh starters as well as a strangely eclectic cross-regional mix of Rowlet, Cyndaquil, and Oshawott. Pretty nifty.

PokeTimes, for its part, also resolved to mark the milestone… Through a mini-distribution of its own, no less! As this Twitter post of May 22, 6PM JST announced to the world, 60 Bidoofs were to be distributed via the HOME app’s embedded Global Trade System (GTS) on Friday, May 27 starting 6PM JST. Bidoofs, of all Pokémon!1The fact that these 60 Bidoofs were to be distributed over the GTS made for a marked change in modus operandi from PokeTimes Clefairy and Chansey, which had been disseminated via Sword & … Continue reading

poketimes preparation

PokeTimes Bidoof x60: 30 from BDSP, 30 from PLA

It’s worth noting that Bidoof has a little-known but distinguished history as an event Pokémon. Back in 2009, when Platinum ruled the roost, the rodent experienced its big break, being transformed into the unusual “Kyocera Dome Bidoof” and handed out to Daisuki Club members as an exclusive PokeFesta 2009 gift. Later that year, Bidoof became the subject of – you guessed it – a prize contest GTS distribution (see here), also staged by that predecessor to PokeTimes, the Daisuki Club. Seen through the prism of event history, then, PokeTimes’ choice of Bidoof can only have been a deliberate one. GTS then, GTS now. Ahh… The circularity, it’s so satisfying. Of course, Sinnoh is Bidoof’s home turf, and Hisui is merely ancient Sinnoh. It all fits.

Surely, then, anticipation ran high? Weeell. Let me start by saying I was intrigued to spot a seemingly new social media trend whereby current event information from official Poké-outlets is repackaged by private YouTubers and (re)disseminated in short videos – sometimes with slick presentations, sometimes less so. Pretty cool. Beats reading, right? But beyond this, it pains me to conclude that public excitement over PokeTimes Bidoof did not run terribly high. The topical hashtag of “PokeTimes Exchange Meeting” (#ポケタイムス交換会) remained a ghost town, and the aforelinked YouTuber Sifu’s lightning-quick information video amassed a meagre 20k views ahead of the event. This compared to over 50k views for a similar video on JCS 2022 Sableye and comparable numbers for an introduction to Korea’s M11 Regigigas. It would seem that despite the obvious historicity and Bidoof’s instinctive meme appeal, the quirky rodent is ultimately still just that, fully devoid of a big-ticket Legendary’s eye-popping draw. Sorry, little fella. Keep on gnawin’.

But, no matter. In fact, in some ways, so much the better! For fewer participants equalled greater odds to reward genuinely passionate players. In this regard, it’s interesting how PokeTimes’ decision to disseminate Bidoof through the HOME GTS introduced an element of player strategy into the initiative to complement dumb luck. How so, you ask? Let me explain.

Altough PokeTimes’ tweets did not explicitly state as much, it seemed intuitive that 2022’s GTS Bidoof would borrow one key element from the exchange protocol of 2009’s GTS Bidoof. By which I mean that we, the players, would likely be expected to deposit our trading fodder onto the GTS, request Bidoof in return and then wait patiently to be traded (or not). PokeTimes, for their part, could thus handpick from the available Bidoof requests, effectively granting the outlet the power to screen deposits for worthy winners. The inevitable conclusion: Playing on PokeTimes’ sensibilities might thus sharply increase one’s chance to win. The obvious implication was that participants might improve their odds of victory by 1) acknowledging that the distribution was aimed primarily at Japanese domestic audiences and acting on it, ie. by uploading a JPN-tagged Pokémon; 2) depositing an appealing Pokémon species that effortlessly stood out amidst the deluge of Bidoof requests.2This in addition to narrowing the few available request parameters to increase visibility (Bidoof Lv.1-10 as shown in the PokeTimes preview, JPN tag). And, of course, keepin’ on trying!

Prepared in this manner or not, as the hour of 6PM JST dawned on May 27th, enthusiasts in Japan and a handful of utter anoraks worldwide stood ready, smartphones in hand. For 60 ‘Doofs, 30 from BDSP, and another 30 from PLA, were about to be transmitted in cyberspace. Following a timely reminder from PokeTimes at 5:50PM JST (here) that trading was poised to start, the exchanges began at 6PM sharp and, thankfully, would go down unburdened by the gross public misunderstandings and technical missteps that plagued the Christmas distributions (cf. here).

Throughout the next 90-some minutes, a steady stream of self-reported Bidoof winners trickled in on social media. A BDSP Bidoof here, a PLA Bidoof there… Once the dust settled, the final results were impressive: The total number of documented Bidoof far exceeded the tallies of previous PokeTimes distros. If the count had stopped at 15/60 documented PokeTimes Clefairy and a paltry 9/60 Chansey, Bidoof could pride itself on a whopping 21/60 (!) confirmed Twitter-based winners, all backed by strong evidence, 18 of whom unique. Yes… Two participants had the good fortune of snagging multiple ‘Doofs. Lucky sods! As it was, many victors such as @rinchan_12195 expressed disbelief. Was their ‘Doof really for real?3When in doubt, check your GTS Notebook!

Naturally you’ll want a full list of freshly-minted PokeTimes Bidoof owners. Find it below. The outbound Pokémon(s) that reportedly secured the winning trades are provided in parentheses.4@RENYA1512 is another potential Bidoof winner. However, their relevant tweet here was pictureless.

BDSP Winners (11 total)
@L_U_X_R_A_Y, here
@_yumegohan_, here [deleted]
@M_G_10, here
@GAME_LIFE_DIARY (Bibarel) here and here
@kaito_swindles (Eevee) here
@otoshigami15, here
@chikori0213 (Bidoof), here and here
@rinchan_12195, here
@gtonyvii, here
@UQbMdD1ARnBcyp5, here
@poke5poke10 (Sneasel), here

PLA Winners (8+2 total)
@acoro8272 (Drampa), here and here
@piglet_island, here
@takeokng_12, here
@shiroganeru, here
@moko3_3 (Milcery), here and here [deleted]
@tukihakirei, here
@s6VvEQS8of8ahsK (x2), here
@poke5poke10 (x2) (Cranidos, Shieldon), here

Surveying all these tweets, timestamps tell us that the collection of 30 BDSP Bidoofs was traded off first, and PLA’s 30 ‘Doofs second. Hmm? You want the usual victors collage? You got it, pal. Here’s a beefy two-parter.

BDSP winners

BDSP Bidoof winners

Bidoof PLA winners

Bidoof PLA winners

Now, there are in fact two more documented winners. That is, a twitterless friend of mine, Andoni, and… Myself. A dusty USUM-era Japanese Snorlax sealed the deal. I rarely win anything, so I’m overjoyed and a little incredulous to be staring at a remarkably unremarkable Lv.3 PLA-stamped rodent in my HOME. But never mind that. Rather, check out this extra-special little guy!

@tukihakirei’s AlphaDoof

See the red skull icon? That’s right, it’s an alpha Bidoof! The image over side was published to Twitter by @tukihakirei (here) some 45 minutes into the event, right at the start of the PLA distribution bloc. At the time, PLA Bidoof’s OTN and TID were not yet publicly known. In other words, this quirky PokeTimes alpha-‘Doof is indisputably authentic. A larger questions looms. The alpha spawn rate in Legends: Arceus is known to be a slim 2%. Was this particular ‘Doof an isolated chance find, or did PokeTimes in fact catch and distribute multiple alpha Bidoofs rounded up in an outbreak or two? It is, at present, anyone’s guess.

Moving on. Haul screenshots! As is tradition, PokeTimes closed out the event by tweeting the fruits of its trades. In the resulting images, we can spot winners’ Drampa, Bibarel, Milcery and Eevee, to name a few. And my chunky Snorlax. Hope you’re doing good, old chum. Misty-eyed goodbyes aside, the high incidence of Bidoofs amongst PokeTimes’ haul is notable. Clearly, a subset of participants assumed that PokeTimes were conducting like-for-like exchanges. Because otherwise, why would anyone deposit a ‘Doof and request another in return?!

poketimes haul

Not a bad return on a stack of Bidoofs.

Before we study the Bidoofs themselves, I want to set aside a few lines to briefly comment on the inherent beauty of this modern iteration of the GTS distribution format. Regular readers will recall that the GTS09 Bidoof, Shinx and Ralts in particular were subject to much hack-and-edit interference by spoilsports determined to sow confusion around Pokémon legitimacy and derive some degree of sadistic pleasure. PokeTimes Chansey, too, saw a significant presence of partypoopers intent on hijacking the event for their own purposes. This revived GTS distribution format, however, ipso facto minimised such risks. Not just because the Bidoofs’ TIDs were an unknown quantity ahead of the fact, but especially because of the HOME app’s built-in GTS tradelog (the ‘Notebook’) that tracks Pokémon departures and arrivals with timestamps and sender/receiver information, and stores this easily retrievable data for eternity. It’s an imperfect tool to be sure, for it doesn’t record TIDs. But even so, the Notebook allows recipients to cross-check the origins of any received Bidoofs at their leisure – this in sharp contrast to the blink-and-you-miss-it, split-second screenshots (or video capture) required to document the sending party of a Surprise Trade. A forever tradelog to forever prove any PokeTimes Bidoof authentic forever.5Shout-out to the Western dumdum who spread PokeTimes Bidoof bearing the botched OTN “PokeTimuzu” (ポケタイムズ). These fakes fooled no-one, but did cause much exasperation among … Continue reading I like it. A lot.

The Bidoofs, then! It will be clear to you by now that the little rodents came in two separate sets: 30 ‘Doofs originating in Shining Pearl and another 30 from Legends: Arceus. As Lv.1 semi-random egg hatches, the BDSP Bidoofs stand firmly in the PokeTimes tradition of Chansey, Gible and Stantler before it. PLA’s Bidoofs, on the other hand, are all wild catches. The reason being, of course, that there’s no Nursery or Daycare in Legends: Arceus and PokeTimes’ favoured method of preparing the specimens is therefore simply unavailable in PLA.

Let’s take a closer look. The available evidence tells us that BDSP Bidoofs are the definition of inattentive breeding, sporting as they do random genders and abilities (Simple / Unaware) as well as random natures and default movesets. Here no Destiny Knot breeding programme to generate high-IV offspring with attractive movesets to boot (cf. PokeTimes Clefairy). No sir. These Bidoofs were Plain Janes; vanilla-plus without the plus, dame blanches without the chocolate sauce. You know, BDSP Bidoofs have access to Skull Bash (via egg moves) as well as an impressive array of TMs: Thunderbolt, Shadow Ball, Grass Knot, Swords Dance, Ice Beam… The list goes on. But instead they got a uniform Tackle / Growl / Defense Curl / Rollout. Dull! Ah, such wasted potential. That they came in Heal Balls was a nice but unfulfilling touch. In any case, all appear to have been hatched in Solaceon Town or the adjoining routes. (No VJump “interesting locations” this time!) Their OTN logically were “ポケタイムス” (PokeTimes) and their TIDs 500031, matching that of PokeTimes Christmas Stantler and thus suggesting that the same savefile was used to breed (or at least hatch) them.

As mentioned above, PLA ‘Doofs were all caught wild in or around the Horseshoe Plains and Aspiration Hill, thus giving them a theoretical level range of 2-14. (The highest documented ‘Doof is Lv.7, discounting the alpha, of course.) This level range means some know only Rollout, while others also know Tackle (learned at Lv.5) and any theoretical higher level Bidoofs would also know Bite (learned at Lv.10). To catch them all, PokeTimes appear to have chucked whatever balls they had on hand at the Bidoofs, which in practice translates to a mixture of PokeBall and Great Ball catches, plus an Ultra Ball for the alpha. Intriguingly, the data we have on @piglet_island’s Bidoof suggests that at least some of them were caught way back in February 2022 shortly after the game’s release. As for practical stats, the Bidoofs’ OTN was once again “ポケタイムス” (PokeTimes) with never before seen TIDs of 607213.

So, what do you think? Was Poketimes Bidoof a worthy reboot of the classic GTS format? In broad terms, with this successful HOME GTS trade initiative under their belt, hopefully we’ll see PokeTimes spread its wings a little more going forward. After all, the possibilities are limitless – come on, Dunsparce distro! And to be sure, whatever ghetto pseudo-event ‘Mons PokeTimes may cook up can only be more interesting than the umpteenth distribution of this or that maxed-out Mythical or box Legendary that’ve come to dominate event Pokémon in recent years. Just, PokeTimes, if you’re reading this… Give your breeding projects a little more love, okay? More ‘Mons with “Present” would be swell!

By the way, Bidoof Day (July 1) is coming up soon… Who knows what TPC has in store for us this year, hmm?

Special thanks to ICanSnake.

Footnotes

Footnotes
1 The fact that these 60 Bidoofs were to be distributed over the GTS made for a marked change in modus operandi from PokeTimes Clefairy and Chansey, which had been disseminated via Sword & Shield’s Surprise Trade feature, and PokeTimes Gible and Stantler, handed out via Link Trades. Aside from a different user experience, the positive impact on record-keeping is plain to see. More on that below.
2 This in addition to narrowing the few available request parameters to increase visibility (Bidoof Lv.1-10 as shown in the PokeTimes preview, JPN tag). And, of course, keepin’ on trying!
3 When in doubt, check your GTS Notebook!
4 @RENYA1512 is another potential Bidoof winner. However, their relevant tweet here was pictureless.
5 Shout-out to the Western dumdum who spread PokeTimes Bidoof bearing the botched OTN “PokeTimuzu” (ポケタイムズ). These fakes fooled no-one, but did cause much exasperation among excited-then-crestfallen recipients such as @eruuu77 here.