I was surprised at how long it took for Nintendo to rerelease the original Pokémon games through the Virtual Console. When they announced it, as well as the fact that the game could transfer Pokémon to the Pokémon Bank, I began to think about transferring legendaries to my Pokémon Y version, and wanted to invest in Pokémon Bank. Alas, those that are banked will only be able to communicate with Pokémon Sun and Moon. Good thing I didn’t buy into Pokémon Bank. Yet.
The main reason I was excited was because there is a way to infinitely generate any of the 151 Pokémon from the first generation. I mentioned that we caught Insomniac the Mew during the Nuzlocke-ish run, and it comes down to a trick that is still present in the rereleases. This was all performed on Pokémon Red Version, though it is applicable to Blue and Yellow. To set it up, you need the following:
- Any Pokémon that can Fly/Teleport/Dig
- An unbattled trainer
- An unbattled trainer on a different route
Play the game normally to get through to Cerulean City. Visit the Pokémon Center, and then pass through Nugget Bridge on the north side and go to the grassy patch to the west, avoiding the trainer in the grass. This is the first time you can capture an Abra, which in my opinion is the easiest and fastest way to perform this glitch. Capture it, proceed north (out of the grass) and save (in case you mess up). Line yourself up with the trainer and move south, spamming the Start button as soon as the trainer “sees” you. The way the game is programmed, each trainer is facing south for a frame or two when they first appear on the screen, giving the player an opportunity to pause the game. Teleport back to the Pokémon Center (or use Fly or Dig as appropriate), and if done right, the trainer will show an exclamation mark above his head while you warp away. Now the game thinks you are in a battle while on the map. Only the directional pad will work at this time. To get out of this state, find another trainer that will walk to you (if you are right next to them, the game will lock). I recommend the Swimmer in Cerulean Gym. Once the battle is over, head back to the bridge and the menu screen will pop up involuntarily. Close it, and a battle with a wild Pokémon will start. If you did everything as described, it will be a Mew!
The game will use the Special stat of the last Pokémon you fought to determine the wild Pokémon battle. The Swimmer’s last Pokémon, Shellder, happens to have a Special stat of 21, which is the internal index number of Mew (the index number is different from the Pokédex number). Knowing this, I set up the glitch and battled different trainers around Cerulean City, capturing a Staryu, Gengar, and even a Chansey (thank goodness‼). That’s fine, but not how a Pokémon Master cheats!
This way is too random. I took my Venusaur, Fearow, and Staryu through most of Kanto until I arrived in Fuchsia City. I left the trainers east of Fuchsia City unbattled to perpetuate the glitch, only this time, after battling and defeating the trainer, I would continuously route through the grass to find a Ditto. Since the glitch only cares about the last Pokémon you battle, and since Ditto transforms to match the stats of the opponent, I could effectively generate whichever Pokémon I wanted! To make things easier, I purposefully found a Missingno. to get many, many Rare Candies (a famous glitch most of us found when the game was originally released: encountering Missingno. gives the player 128 of the item in the sixth slot); that way, I could level up a Pokémon to get the Special stat I required. That’s great, but a Pokémon Master can cheat better than that!
The problem with the glitch is that once a trainer has been battled, there is no way to challenge them again, giving you limited resources to perform said glitch. Luckily, I found the ultimate way to cheat the game:
- Find an unbattled trainer (I continued using the trainer near Nugget Bridge)
- Perform the steps as before, using Fly to go back to Fuchsia City
- Access the PC in the Pokémon Center, switching boxes (this saves the game)
- Reset the system
- Go to the Warden’s house in Fuchsia City, using Strength on the boulder (this counts as an encounter)
- Find a Ditto to transform into a Pokémon with the Special matching the index number you want
- Fly back to Cerulean City and head north
Using this method, I got all 151 Pokémon without trading and before “earning” my sixth badge. Honestly, I didn’t need Koga’s Soul Badge, but I wanted to capture a few legit Pokémon in the sea, reducing my time spent reseting the game.
You may notice that each of the Pokémon encountered using this method is at level 7. This is based on the Attack modifier of the last Pokémon fought before triggering the glitch. It also means that by using these modifiers, such as Growl, the level could be as low as 1 and as high as 13 (just make sure the level 1 Pokémon does not go to the PC, since the game will lock up should you try to withdraw it). Welcome to yet another Pokémon Master glitch known as experience underflow! When trying to capture a Pokémon that is in the medium-slow experience growth family (this is most Pokémon with three evolutions aside from Dratini, though not the only ones), lower them to level 1 and capture them (again, make sure there is room on the team). Check the experience needed to get to level 2. If you fight a Pokémon that gives less experience than what was required, the game will boost them up to level 100. Those that are outside of that growth family, just cram Rare Candies down their gullet.
Congratulations, you could be the proud owner of an army of level 100 Mew for just pennies! I think Pokémon Sun and Moon will be pretty easy…