Wartortle is a bipedal, indigo reptilianPokémon similar to a turtle. It has brown eyes, a dark blue streak on each cheek, and two sharp teeth protruding from its upper jaw. It has three clawed fingers and pointed toes. On each side of its head are feather-like ears covered in pale blue fur. A brown shell with a pale yellow underside encases its body. A thick, white rim separates the upper and lower halves of the shell. An older Wartortle may have scars and algae growing on its shell. Poking out of the bottom of the shell is a thick, wavy tail that also has light blue fur and cannot be fully withdrawn into its shell. Its tail fur will darken with age. Its tail is a popular symbol of longevity and good luck, making this Pokémon popular with the elderly.
Because they are larger than Squirtle and have a larger shell, Wartortle have a more difficult time walking on land and keeping their balance in the water. To maintain balance while swimming at high speeds, Wartortle moves its furry ears and tail as both rudders and balancing rods. Air can be stored in its fur for extended underwater diving. It hides in water when hunting and emerges to surprise its prey. The anime has shown that Wartortle can be found living in colonies on islands, but its preferred habitat seems to be freshwater ponds and lakes. In Generation II, Skull Bash was its signature move.
A group of Wartortle was part of a firefighting squad led by Captain Aidan. Team Wartortle works alongside Team Squirtle and Team Blastoise depending on which evolutionary form is best for the situation. Ash's Squirtle temporarily joined Team Wartortle to prove its strength in The Pokémon Water War. The team later went up against the Squirtle Squad — led by Ash's Squirtle — in a firefighting competition in The Fire-ring Squad.
Anime promotional art depicting Wartortle with the same color on its ears and its face
Even though Wartortle's ears are depicted lighter than its face in the official Sugimori stock art and most of its game sprites, early promotional pictures portrayed its ears the same color as its face.
Wartortle's design appears to be a stylized turtle. Its feathery tail is a reference to Japanese legends of the minogame (蓑亀), a turtle which lived for 10,000 years and grew a tail made of seaweed. The use of its tail to store oxygen seems to be a reference to certain turtles that breathe through their cloaca, placed near the tail. The tail also resembles wind waves.
Wartortle may be a combination of war or warrior, water, tortoise, and turtle.
Kameil may be a combination of 亀 kame (turtle, tortoise) and tail.