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Darkrai is a Dark-type Mythical Pokémon originating from Generation IV, and a member of the Lunar duo alongside Cresselia. Although in the anime Darkrai is seen as a hero, in some video games he is a villain bent on ruling the whole world of Pokémon and making it a world of darkness. His most important role as a villain is in Pokémon Mystery Dungeon 2: Explorers of Time, Darkness, and Sky, where he is the true main antagonist of the game.
Pokémon Mystery Dungeon 2
Though Darkrai is normally a well meaning being, in the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series of games, mainly Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time, Darkness, and Sky, Darkrai serves as the true main antagonist and is a force of pure evil. Darkrai is the Pokémon responsible for the initial destruction of Temporal Tower, halting the flow of time and driving Dialga to insanity. He then presumably controlled the world from the shadows, using Primal Dialga as a puppet ruler. When Grovyle, Celebi and the Player planned to go back in time via Celebi's Passage of Time and prevent the collapse of Temporal Tower, thereby preventing the dark world Darkrai had created from existing, Darkrai intervened, attacking Grovyle and the Player as they travelled through time, separating them and transforming the Player into a Pokémon and giving them amnesia. Despite this, the Player, their Partner and Grovyle were successful in their mission to prevent the destruction of time, and Darkrai's dark future is erased. However, Darkrai is not seen until much later in the game.
The Player begins to have dreams involving a Pokémon named Cresselia, who tells them that their continued existence is causing a rift the fabric of space and time, as they originated from a non-existent future. Later, the Player and their Partner are alerted to the fact that Azurill has fallen into a nightmare he can't wake from. With the help of Drowzee, the pair are sent into Azurill's nightmare and encounter Cresselia where it is revealed that the Partner had been having the same dreams as the Player, as they had been to the erased future. Cresselia attempts to kill them, claiming it is for the greater good, but is interrupted by Drowzee and flees. A few days after the Azurill event, the Player and Partner are abducted by Palkia and taken to Spacial Rift, where he attempts to execute them for distorting space and time. They escape from him temporarily, and later encounter him again and defeat him in battle. Soon after his defeat, Palkia is frozen into a nightmare, and a disembodied voice asks the pair if they would like to travel into Palkia's nightmare. When they do, they encounter not only Palkia, but Cresslia as well, who had been the one to inform him about the distortion caused by the Player and Partner. Cresselia attempts once again to kill the pair, but once again is stopped. Another Cresselia appears, telling the Player, Partner and Palkia that the Cresselia that had contacted them in their dreams was actually Darkrai in disguise, who had been attempting to kill the pair so that they could not interfere with his new plans for a world of darkness. Darkrai, enraged that he had failed yet again to kill the pair, flees, telling them to meet him in Dark Crater if they want to stop him. The Player, Partner and the real Cresselia comply, travelling to the deepest part of the Dark Crater, where Darkrai attempts to convince the Player and Partner to join him and help him kill Cresselia. The Partner, claiming that they stand no chance against Darkrai anyway, accepts Darkrai's offer, and joins him in attempting to coerce the Player. However, the Player figures out that the Partner hasn't actually betrayed them, and what they're seeing is actually a nightmare created by Darkrai. Darkrai then proceeds to summon six minions (Aggron, Arbok, Magmortar, Mismagius, Rhyperior, and Magcargo), and the two parties battle, with the Player's group emerging victorious. Despite his loss, Darkrai claims that he has not been defeated, and opens a Dimensional Hole through which to escape, after which he can simply start his plan over at a different time. However, just as Darkrai is about to enter the Dimensional Hole, Palkia appears, and announces that he is there to destroy Darkrai. Darkrai attempts to flee through the Dimensional Hole, but Palkia launches an attack (presumably Hyper Beam) at it, shattering the Dimensional Hole with Darkrai in it. Palkia states that Darkrai is however, not dead, rather, he has reappeared in some distant corner of the world, likely with amnesia, similar to what happened to the Player when Darkrai attacked them during time travel.
After this, Darkrai can be found in a number of dungeons (provided the player has a Secret Slab or Mystery Part in their inventory) and potentially recruited.
Pokémon Ranger: Shadows of AlmiaDarkrai is the final boss in the video game; Pokémon Rangers: Shadows of Almia, though he does not initially appear as a villain in this game, but must be stopped from engulfing Almia into darkness. Darkrai's power is exploited by Blake Hall, the main antagonist of the game. Blake uses Darkrai and the black crystal that Darkrai protects to fuel his machine. But when a malfunction occurs, Darkrai becomes enraged, becomes even more powerful, and engulfs Blake into a black hole, which was Darkrai's Nightmare technique. However, when the hero uses the power of the red, yellow, and blue crystals collected earlier in the game, Darkrai is able to be stopped.
Super Smash Bros.
Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Though Darkrai doesn't appear in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, he does appear as one of the trophies.
Super Smash Bros. 4
Darkrai makes his appearance in the video game; Super Smash Bros for Wii U and 3DS. He appears as one of the Pokémon emerging out of a Pokéball, or Master Ball. When Darkrai emerges from the Pokéball, he unleashes a Dark Void. Anyone who comes in contact with the Dark Void will be put to sleep, and those that are asleep, will be dealt with heavy damage due to Darkrai's Bad Dreams ability.
Darkrai appears in the arcade version of Pokkén Tournament as a playable character, and one of the only two Dark-type fighters in the game alongside Weavile. Whether Darkrai will appear in the Wii U version as an update gift or DLC is uncertain.
- Though a Dark-type Pokémon, Darkrai can walk through walls in the Mystery Dungeon games even though he isn't a Ghost-type.
- Thought Darkrai is genderless in the main game series, he is regarded as male in other game series since his archenemy Cresselia's gender is female.
- Darkrai is the first known Dark-type Legendary Pokémon, with Yveltal as the second.
- Among Darkrai's minions, Arbok is the only Pokémon who cannot be encountered in the floors of Dark Crater.
- The Darkrai from the Mystery Dungeon games has many similarities with the following villains:
- Joker from the Nolanverse:
- Both made their debut in the second installation of their respective series.
- Both have manipulated individuals and events to their own gain.
- Both have drove an individual into becoming evil and insane (Darkrai drove Dialga into becoming Primal Dialga, while the Joker drove Harvey Dent into becoming Two Face).
- Both desire absolute destruction and chaos of their worlds, though Darkrai was planning to rule the tattered remains of its world, while the Joker cause chaos and destruction simply for entertainment.
- Both had their minions help them against their fight with the heroes (Darkrai had his fellow Pokémon and the Joker had his dogs).
- Both had backup plans should their original plan fail (Darkrai would escape through the dimensional hole, while the Joker was going to blow up the two hostage ships anyway).
- Both survived their fight against the protagonist but not without suffering some form of punishment, despite it being small compared to the damage they caused (Darkrai suffered amnesia, while the Joker went to prison).
- Both of their action led to devestating consequences in the future.
- Tobi from Naruto:
- Dimentio from Super Paper Mario:
- Both made their reveal as the true main villain near the end of their respective games.
- Both have manipulated events and individuals behind the scenes, including the false antagonists.
- Both have broke the minds of someone to further their plans (Dialga for Darkrai, Fracktail for Dimentio).
- Both don't care if their actions cause the world to be in ruin so long as they get to rule it in the end.
- Both have offered the heroes to join them.
- Both tried to get rid of the heroes once they are of no use to them.
- Both used individuals to help them get rid of the heroes (Darkrai used his minions, while Dimentio used Luigi).
- Both had backup plans should their original plan fail (Darkrai would escape through the dimensional hole, while Dimentio would use the remains of the Heart Chaos Heart to destroy reality).
- Both are the most cunning and powerful villains of their respective game series.
- Both are also the darkest and evilest villains of their respective game series.
- Both debut in a spin-off of a main video game series, Mario and Pokémon respectively.
- Interestingly, both of those game series come from Nintendo.
- Joker from the Nolanverse: