While it is not known to evolve to or from any other Pokémon, it has a second forme activated by giving Giratina a Griseous Orb to hold, or while it is in its home, the Distortion World. Its original forme, Altered Forme, will then become Origin Forme.
Giratina's Origin Forme was officially revealed in early February 2008.
Giratina is a large gray draconic Pokémon with gold half rings circling the back of its neck. Its head has a gold crown-like object surrounding it with two large horns pointing sideways. A thick black stripe runs vertically along the front with red horizontal stripes. In its Altered Forme, it has two large black ghostly wings with red tips that can resemble claws. These wings can change shape as if it's a liquid or gas. Its six legs are thick and clawed.
In its Origin Forme, it takes on a serpentine look, with six black ghostly streamers on its back with red spikes at the tips. Its legs are reduced to spikes, and four additional golden spikes appear near the edge of its tail. While in Origin Forme, the three gold half-rings can grip objects. The horns on its head are now facing the back, and the black vertical stripe is broken into pieces and runs all the way down its body. It can only be in its Origin Forme when in its home, the Reverse World, or when holding a Griseous Orb.
Giratina is able to travel through and control dimensions besides those of time and space. When in its Origin Forme, it is able to pass through dimensions at will, however, it will turn back to its Altered Forme due to the gravity change from the Reverse World. It does so by emitting a whirlwind from its mouth which creates a portal. It also seems to have a connection to reflective objects, such as mirrors and pools of water. Reflections embody the concept of the Reverse World. Giratina is a highly aggressive and territorial Pokémon protective of its home. Legends claim that Giratina appears in cemeteries and that it supposedly lives in a world on the reverse side. It was said to be banished for violence. Giratina is the only known Pokémon that can learn Shadow Force.
Giratina made its debut in Giratina and the Sky Warrior. In the movie, Giratina ambushes and drags Dialga into the Reverse World in order to exact revenge against the Temporal Pokémon for causing damage to its home during its fight with Palkiasome time before. Zero attempts to copy Giratina's powers in order to take control over the Reverse World. Throughout the movie, Giratina takes on its Origin Forme whenever it is in the Reverse World, and its Altered Forme whenever it is in the real world.
Giratina appeared in The New World, interfering with Cyrus' plan to destroy the world and recreate it. It first emerged from the Distortion World to free Dialga and Palkia from the Red Chain. Then, it took Cyrus with it back to its home world. It was last seen in its Origin Forme, observing Cyrus as he regained consciousness, realized he was in the Distortion World, and accepted it as the new world he sought.
Eventually, Giratina fought Dialga, Palkia and Reg all at once inside the Distortion World. After Charon's flying craft was destroyed, he decided to retreat by commanding Giratina to fly him out of the Distortion World. However, Charon and Giratina were impeded by a Draco Meteor from Cynthia's Garchomp as soon as they arrived back in the Pokémon world. After Charon's arrest by Looker, Giratina rose again and tried to ambush Platinum but Volkner's Electivire and Flint's Magmortar finished it off. Giratina was forced to return to the Distortion World on Dialga and Palkia's command.
Altered Forme Giratina appears as a Poké Ball summon. It will use Dragon Breath to cause a whirlwind. It also causes damage on contact.
NA: This Ghost/Dragon-type Pokémon is a resident of the Distortion World. When it is given a Griseous Orb, it'll change into its Origin Forme. Its Dragon Breath attack can catch fighters in a powerful, damaging tornado. If you're on the receiving end, be careful it doesn't carry you right off the stage
PAL: Also called the Renegade Pokémon, Giratina lives in a dimension known as the Distortion World. It has two forms, and will only be seen in its Origin Forme in our world if it's holding a Griseous Orb. Its Dragon Breath attack creates a powerful tornado that not only damages you, but can carry you off the stage!
Giratina may be based on Seta, a giant centipede, from the Japanese fairytale, "My Lord Bag of Rice", which was said to prey on dragon hatchlings and be as large as a mountain. Giratina's Altered Forme is also possibly based on a basilisk, and its Origin Forme may be based on a serpent.
In its Altered Forme, Giratina's wings may be based on a bat's, and its body has an insect-like, six-legged feature, but its posture is similar to a sauropod.
Its Origin Forme has a body similar to a serpent, while the six protrusions on its body may be based on a scorpion's stinger or spider legs. This Forme also shares physical traits with the Amphiptere, a European dragon-like creature with wings but no legs.
In interviews Junichi Masuda and Takeshi Kawachimaru did with G4, they said that Giratina and the Distortion World were created to be personifications of antimatter. In HeartGold and SoulSilver, Cynthia also states this.
Giratina may be a combination of girasol (a type of red opal), guillotine, or girare (Italian for to wander around); and プラチナ purachina (Japanese for platinum).
In other languages
From a combination of girasol, girare, or guillotine, and プラチナ purachina