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I was playing Pokémon Mystery Dungeon Blue Rescue Team when I noticed the description for the Decrepit Lab Friend Area was

'An abandoned lab built by humans long ago. Left to fall into disrepair, it is now home to Pokémon.'

That either means 1. There are humans in the Pokémon world (doesn't make sense) 2. There was a lab in the human world which was somehow teleported to the Pokémon world (doesn't make sense either) So why are humans mentioned in the description?

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Best answer

There is another explanation. Bare in mind that this is only a theory, and it is a videogame, some creative liberty will be needed and there is no official explanation.
Beware minor spoilers for the PMD games

Answer 2 isn't impossible, and we cant really disapprove it. At the same time we can't prove it. There is however more interesting and plausible theories.

Answer 1 have already been proven true as Pokemon and humans exist together in the main games and your main character in the Mystery Dungeon games is a human. In the PMD Explorers games it is also proven that there are humans in the future. Furthermore, the Pokemon in the PMD does know about or have meet humans, albeit they don't seem to like them or they outright fear them. We could thus assume the PMD games take place in the same universe as the main games.

So why is there so few humans mentioned in the games, and why did the Decrepit Lab fall into disrepair? And why do the Pokemon fear humans?
My core theory is that the Mystery Dungeon games takes place a long time after the main series of Pokemon games, in a time where all humans have died out for some reason.

But what could be the reason for humans disappearing and Pokemon fearing them? My first theory to this is that humans destroyed themselves through some sort of war. We can also assume both conventional weapons and Pokemon was used in this war, thus making Pokemon fear them. However, in all previous wars in real history there have at least been some survivors. An all out nuclear war could have killed all humans of, but then there wouldn't have been any Pokemon left either. So how do we kill of near all humans but leave Pokemon alive?

This is where my second theory comes in. A war between Pokemon and humans. For some reason the two fought a war that exterminated the humans. For all the fancy weapons we have today Pokemon could easily use their natural strengths and numbers to turn us into minced meat. But all the power in the world means nothing if you cant organise your ranks. If Pokemon were to have a chance of winning such a war, they would need structure. And wouldn't you know, the PMD games prove this on so many levels.

In the all the other Pokemon games/manga/anime Pokemon are very animalistic. We see them communicate among themselves, but not a whole lot more. They are capable of independent thinking and seem smarter than your average dumb beast, but they still seem content with being put into small balls and fight each other. They are still animals, or at least not smart or willing to rebel against us.

In the PMD games however, Pokemon have developed and entire society. They can write, build houses, organise themselves, they have money and a economy, they sell food, gear and even land amongst themselves, they plant apples and have developed some sort of higher agriculture, they even cooperate to solve advanced problems together. Heck, they even have weapons and fancy gadgets of their own that can do a bunch of stuff in the form of the Orb, throwing and seed items. These items are also interesting for another reason. They aren't in the main games. These items are never mentioned in the core game, so could it be that they were developed by the Pokemon themselves?
We could assume the Pokemon either had to create this organisation to combat the humans, or that gaining these human skills allowed the Pokemon to rebel against their former masters, this is basically trying to determine if the Pidgey or the egg came first. The bottom line is that the Pokemon in the PMD games are far smarter than the Pokemon in the main series of games, and that this could be linked to the destruction of humanity.
Speaking of this advanced gear, isn't it strange that these devices of teleportation and sticks of pure silver just lie thrown about? Its unlikely that someone put them there intentionally, but being left behind, such as at the end of a war or because they weren't needed, would give good reason for these items to be about. They aren't natural items either, then they would be in the main games as well. Manufactured goods aren't just going be scattered around for no reason.

See the comments for my rant about wild Pokemon in the PMD (its important but not vital to the question and theory itself)

All this would explain the Pokemon's fear of humans, the Pokemon still remembering humans, the Decrepit Lab's ruin, the advanced society of the PMD games and the lack of humans in the PMD games. A Great Pokemon War would explain a lot about how the entire PMD games are built up, as well as making up a interesting lore behind the games.

As I said before this is all my personal theories, and there is no backing by any official sources of this. But in this case there might just be a bit more to it than the usual artistic freedom.

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This answeer is brilliant, much better than mine. I do have one question: in PMD, your character was once a human who partnered with Grovyle in the future to help save the Pokémon world. If all of the humans died, how can you be alive? Are you a "survivor"? And why would you want to help Pokémon?
That is a good point, and my only explanation to this is that it is the future. A small group of humans survived the war and teamed up with Pokemon to stop their common enemy Dialga and the destruction of time itself.
There's one more point I would like to discuss that, at first glance, disapproves my theory on "evolved" Pokemon. The existence of wild Pokemon in the PMD games. If Pokemon now had banded together to take out humans, why would there still be random Ratatas everywhere, attacking on sight? To be honest, I think there is reason in this madness. The Pokemon are clearly smarter in the PMD games. Instead of attacking you one by one they team up on you, and Pokemon of many different species collaborate to take you down. They aren't fighting internally either, but only focus on you. This is proof of some high level of organisation. And why wouldn't they hunt you down?
As the main character you invade the "wild" Pokemon's homes and steal their food and gear. That these Pokemon attack you relentlessly is anything but surprising. It isnt impossible that all the locations with Pokemon in the PMD games could be similar in structure to the main towns. Further proof of this lies in the Keacleon shops. These exist randomly throughout the dungeons, and the "wild" Pokemon **don't** attack them. We can thus believe they know the Keacleon's and possibly trade with them, meaning they are as advanced as the "normal" Pokemon.
Now it could be argued that the wild Pokemon still fight stupidly, always attacking and never doing anything else. They don't use strategy on the same level as you can. But that also makes sense, as you aren't a Pokemon. When fighting "normal" Pokemon such as the Guild in PMD Explorers or Gengar's gang in PMD Red/Blue, they fight the same way. Only you, the human, have the power to command your friends to do other things than mindlessly attacking.
Also, most of the questgivers in the PMD games arent the "normal" Pokemon. They are mostly just random Pokemon. Where do they live? Why arent they present in the cities. Most likely its just artistic freedom, but that these Pokemon would live like the "normal" Pokemon but away from the main town sounds more pleasing. The Shaymin and Smergle villages is further proof of this.
So the consensus of this part was that the wild Pokemon are just as smart and organised as any other Pokemon.
Thanks, that clears stuff up.
holy dang pie-torkoals with wings
0 votes

No one knows for sure.

Only Game Freak have 100% understanding of their games. We will likely never know the correleation between humans and Pokémon in the PMD series. However, I have one theory.

Humans are beginning to go extinct. Not simply dying off, however, but turning into Pokémon. This is shown by the Pokémon's ablity to form articulate speech, run shops, set up Guilds, etc, etc. There are still wild Pokémon, which are the ones you fight in mystery dungeons, and there are still legendaries, such as Dialga (Legendaries are still more intelligent than your average Pokémon, so they are not humans). However, some boss Legends (such as Darkrai in Explorers of Time/Darkness/Light) are humans due to their evilness that goes beyond that of normal Pokémon, who are really just animals and no more evil than the next guy. This goes for Legends such as Shaymin and Cresselia as well.

The theory is that humans, over time, developed the technology to permenantly transform into Pokémon. This lead to Pokémon become the dominant species on Earth, and they took over what the humans did before them. There are a few humans left, however, and they believe that in order to help the Pokémon/people, it is best to stay in human form for the time being. However, actual humans are scarce and mostly unheard of.

So there, that is my theory. Note that I made this theory based on Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Darkness/Light/Time, however I believe that most PMD games up until Gates to Infinity function about the same. I hope you found this useful.

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Erm, I'm pretty sure the 'able to talk part' is just because you're a Pokémon, thus you can understand their speech.
I have one question: How come every Pokemon is surprised to know that you're a human in the PMD games?
@MechSteelix: If you're referring to my answer, they are surprised because the human/Pokémon shift happened may generations ago. There are some humans still alive, but they mostly hide in their labs and have little to no contact with the Pokémon world. If you want a better explanation, though, see flafpert's answer.