Relicanth is a medium-sized, brown fish Pokémon. Its camouflage makes it blend in perfectly into the undersea caves where it lives. Relicanth is covered in many fins which are on the top, bottom and sides of this Pokémon.
Relicanth shares its types with four of the five original fossil Pokémon, Kabuto, Kabutops, Omanyte, and Omastar, furthering its link to them as a living fossil. It also shares its type with Corsola.
Relicanth is the only Water-type to learn Head Smash, as well as the only one to not receive recoil damage from it, due to its ability. In fact, it's one of two Pokémon that gains STAB and protection from a recoil-damage-giving move. The other is Clefable with Magic Guard.
Relicanth is one of only three Pokémon with its gender ratio that has been able to be caught from the wild in every generation since its introduction, alongside Munchlax/Snorlax and Combee, and one of only five to ever be obtainable in the wild (Eevee and Togepi can be caught in Generation IV).
Relicanth has two colors: one is brown while the shiny is blue. This is also true with the real-life counterparts, the coelacanth.
Relicanth's lighter splotches alongside its pale brown color make it visually similar to antique maps. Likewise, the light blue of the shiny form can be seen as the visual representation of water.
Relicanth was inspired by the real-world fossil fish, Coelacanth.
Its name comes from the words "relic" and "coelacanth".