Metapod: All You Need to Know

Author: Robbie Anderson

Move over, Tide Pods; there’s a new pod in town, and it’s totally meta.

Just kidding, it’s not quite “meta” at all, actually. But, that doesn’t take away from this amazingly unique, yet so [at times, frustratingly] simple Pokémon known as Metapod! Dive in as we explore “All You Need to Know” with Metapod, the Kanto region’s very own non-poisonous Cocoon Pokémon (sorry Kakuna, I’m sure we’ll get to your story later).

Who’s that Pokémon?

Weighing in just over twenty pounds and measuring about two feet in length, Metapod is certainly nothing particularly special in terms of physical attributes. The green Cocoon Pokémon is essentially a hardened shell version of its pre-evolved form, Caterpie. Just like caterpillars go through the process of metamorphosis to eventually turn into a butterfly, Caterpie undergoes its own evolutionary development with the endgame being a change into the beautiful Butterfree. Metapod is the middleman in this evolutionary chain, playing an important transitional role in Caterpie’s ultimate evolution into Butterfree.

Unfortunately for Metapod, that’s all it really is; a transitional evolution. For other Pokémon, the middle evolution can still be an effective “Pocket Monster” in its own right, capable of dealing damage and going on the defensive. Take Charmeleon for example. The fire Pokémon is by no means a peer of its elder evolution Charizard, but it’s more than powerful enough to fight and still much stronger than the first in its evolutionary chain, Charmander.

For a Pokémon like Metapod, it quite literally can only go on the defensive. It’s body is an immobile chrysalis with two large, sad-looking eyes (it would be a good guess to say that they are sad eyes considering that Metapod can’t really move of its own accord, or do much of anything for that matter). Let’s get into what Metapod really can (or can’t, depending on how you want to look at it) do.

Basically Just a Hard Shell

As we’ve already covered, our good friend Metapod is somewhat helpless in terms of holding its own, whether that be out in the wild or in the care of a trainer. It has an extremely vulnerable body inside its hardened outer shell, but it is unable to truly defend itself from those who might do it harm, other than by its signature move: Harden.

And no, we are not talking about James Harden, the superstar basketball player on the Houston Rockets of the NBA. In actuality, Metapod’s Harden and James Harden are vastly different because Metapod’s move is in fact used to bolster its defense, something which James Harden might wish to learn from (sorry, bad joke). Anyway, Metapod’s only learned move is Harden, and it's pretty self-explanatory. By using Harden, Metapod’s outer cocoon gets stronger, boosting its defense stat and making it more difficult for enemies to hurt it. Metapod can know a couple other moves, such as Tackle and String Shot, but these are carried over from the time that Metapod was still a Caterpie.

Metapod is a bug Pokémon through and through, making it weak against Fire, Flying, and Rock type moves. Even with Harden, Metapod will have a tough time going up against opponents of these types. On the offensive, Bug type moves are super effective against Dark, Psychic, and Grass type Pokémon. However, for Metapod specifically, it still might prove to be no match against these Pokémon as a result of its terribly limited moveset. Don’t fret, though. If Metapod happens to be owned by a diligent trainer, than he or she would take their precious Bug type to a move tutor. There, Metapod can actually learn some helpful moves, such as Iron Defense (steroid-version of Harden), Electroweb (a mildly powerful Electric move) and an actual Bug move, Bug Bite. Awareness is the key here, though. Without a tutor, Metapod is out of luck and will be forced to resort to its regular Harden until it faints from uselessness.

Out and About

Long-time fans of the original Pokémon television series/anime will know of protagonist-character Ash Ketchum’s Metapod. Much to the chagrin of his lifetime pal Misty, Ash proceeds to catch a spunky Caterpie in just the third episode of the series. Through some training and friendship, Ash’s Caterpie eventually levels up and evolves into Metapod. A legendary battle between Ash’s Metapod and another belonging to the friendly foe known as the Samurai ensued, in which both trainers’ Pokémon engaged in a test of wills using… Harden? Yes, that was Metapod’s only known prolonged battle in the anime (he shortly evolved into Butterfree to defend Ash from a Beedrill swarm. Remarkably, Ash faced off against a rather skilled Metapod (if you can believe it) owned by Gym Leader Bugsy of the Johto Region’s Azalea Town. This particular Metapod was able to K.O. Ash’s Chikorita, Johto’s Grass-type starter Pokémon.

Metapod makes some appearances in other official Pokémon media, such as a notable member of Yellow’s team in the “Pokémon Adventures” manga (when it was transitioning from Caterpie to Butterfree) and as a once-key member of Red’s team in the reboot mini-series “Pokémon Origins,” specifically in Red’s battle with Pewter City’s Gym Leader Brock’s Onix. The Cocoon Pokémon also shows up in lesser known media like “The Electric Tale of Pikachu” manga, “How I Became a Pokémon Card” manga, and the “Magical Journey” manga.

How to Get Your Own

Metapod can be found in all of the Pokémon games, from the Kanto Region’s Generation 1 to the seventh generation in Forested areas are the usual stomping grounds for these critters in all of the games, and listed below are the most common areas to find Metapod throughout the world of Pokémon:

  • Kanto (Gen 1) – Viridian Forest; Route 25
  • Johto (Gen 2) – Ilex Forest; National Park
  • Hoenn (Gen 3*) – Trading
  • Sinnoh (Gen 4) – Eterna Forest
  • Unova (Gen 5) – Route 12; Trading
  • Kalos (Gen 6) – Santalune Forest
  • Alola (Gen 7) – Lush Jungle; Route 1

*Although Metapod cannot be found in the wild in the Hoenn Region, it can be traded over from the Gen 3 games FireRed and LeafGreen

In Conclusion…

If you want to build your Pokémon team with quality Bug type centerpiece, then Metapod might not be the first little creature to come to your mind. However, even if vulnerable cocoons aren’t your thing, Metapod is a must if you ever want to have your very own Butterfree. Unless you catch one of course, but that’s no fun.