Look, if you’ve been hanging out here at Grinding Down for some time now, then you know one certain thing about me: I love puns. Heck, I even tag a bunch of my entries with “pun” so I can quickly go back and chuckle at my–or someone else’s–witty writing. It’s a writer thing, and I probably have Piers Anthony’s Xanth series to blame; I devoured every book I could buy by him in high school, finally stopping around book #24, The Dastard. Seems like more have come out though, but I’ve outgrown his writing.
So it’s a good thing I love puns because otherwise…Dragon Quest IX would be nearly unbearable. It’s safe to say that the tiny DS cartridge is bloated with puns, both good and bad, and they are around every corner, whether it’s a town’s name (::cough cough:: Alltrades Abbey ::cough::) or people like Edwinn and Erinn, inn runners and Inny winners, or even at the very beginning of the story, at a place called Angel Falls, whereat the main character, an angel, falls down to after some havoc happens up above.
Where the puns really come out in full zombie mode though are with the monsters. An RPG has to have monsters to battle, and there’s a lot here, the majority pun-heavy. Some are better than others, and yes, I’ll openly admit that many are big ol’ groaners. But there’s a few that make me smile each and every time I run into them. Let’s review, shall we?
Oh my goodness! Just look at it! I want to hug it and smother it with love and then slice it into a dozen pieces for my salad and tuna fish sammich. It has a goofy look, sure, but it also has the best death animation. The Cruelcumber bounces onto its back, spear flying high into the air and then piercing its vegetable heart. But yeah, plant-based monsters really do get the pick of the crop…when it comes to puns. Nyuck nyuck nyuck!
I couldn’t find a picture of this monster online, sadly. Basically, it’s a sack, like a sack of grain or flour, and it is spewing life from a huge hole in its body. I guess it is its mouth, but it does kind of resemble a certain mysterious beast of the forest.
Betterfly is a stronger version of Batterfly, a monster modeled after a butterfly. It’s an easy pun, yes, but it works. I mean, you can’t go around calling butterfly monsters things like Evil Butterfly or Death-from-Abovefly or 666erfly. Just doesn’t work. Alas, there is no Bitterfly in the game. I checked.
It’s a clown-like monster cycloning its way over to kill you. Come to think about it, that’s actually quite terrifying. Run!
No picture found, but it isn’t anything special to look at. Just another octopus monster you’ll fight once you get a boat and start heading for open waters. But this punny name makes sense. I mean, they have eight arms…there’s bound to be some knocking around when words no longer settle arguments. A later cousin monster is, embarrassingly, called Shocktopus, which I won’t even touch upon.
Runner-ups include: Badboon, Salamarauder, Zumeanie, Bewarewolf, and Expload
To see a whole bunch of monster art, visit the official Dragon Quest IX Nintendo website.