VAN Pookin (VAN・プーキン,VAN Pūkin?) is the sub boss of Shade Man's stage in Mega Man 7, and a boss in Mega Man: The Power Battle. It is three separate jack-o'-lantern robots, one inside each other. It jumps around, trying to jump on Mega Man. The mini pumpkin fires green shots, and it can fly into the air and shoot many green shots. It can reveal a different path depending on whether it was defeated by shooting either its large eyes, which reveals the right passage, or the mini pumpkin inside it, which reveals the lower passage. The lower passage leads to Proto Man, and the right passage to the Energy Equalizer.
VAN Pookin is a play on pumpkin (パンプキン panpukin), and possibly spooky (スプーキー supūkī).
In the prototype build of Mega Man 7, a hovering humanoid robot that looks just like the broken ones found in the beginning of Shade Man's stage appears as the sub-boss of Shade Man's stage. sprites, video.
An early sprite of VAN Pookin can also be found in the prototype's data, which suggests that VAN Pookin was planned to appear all along, and that this particular sub-boss was simply a placeholder while the staff worked on VAN Pookin's animation frames. This makes sense as the humanoid robot does not fit with the rest of the level's horror theme.
A giant VAN Pookin toy appears in Clown Man's stage.