The original Pokémon Game Boy games introduced countless players to the RPG genre, with most of them not even realizing it.
While simple when compared to their contemporaries like Final Fantasy or Chrono Trigger, the Pokémon games boiled the genre down into its core components while also adding and refining elements to unique to them, such as the “Gotta Catch ‘em All” concept.
In short, despite being simple, the red and blue colored Pokémon games were (and still are) incredibly fun and original RPGs… but they were also littered with a practically unparalleled level of bugs and glitches that added a whole new dimension to the game for players who wished to get the absolute most out of them, and that’s exactly what we’ll be discussing with our list of Pokémon Red And Blue: 25 Ways To Break The Game Only True Fans Knew About.
Sure, the core gameplay of Red and Blue was reasonably solid (disregarding the horrifying imbalances related to Psychic Pokémon,) but even the youngest and least experienced players were bound to stumble onto something that they knew didn’t belong, like the infamous MissingNo.
While that glitched out beast and its various uses will be in this countdown, true fans were able to dig far deeper into the game and find ways that shatter it into a million pieces, such as abusing Surf, generally sequence breaking, or discovering ways to teleport themselves directly to the Hall of Fame without so much as a badge.
With that in mind, prepare yourselves to become the “very best” when it comes to game-breaking glitches in Red and Blue!
25 Bypassing The Ghost
Although the early games were light on stories, the minimal amount they contained was still memorable. For example, Lavender Town had players encountering a frightening ghost that wouldn’t let them pass without a Silph Scope.
Don’t have one, though? No worries, just give it a PokéDoll and it’ll go away.
This particular method of getting past the ghost was obviously unintended, but it’s still an impressive feat, regardless, especially when considering the fact that you get to use that oft-forgotten (and generally useless) PokéDoll… for once.
24 Infinite Money
Red and Blue never adequately addressed players running out of money. This problem is only amplified by the fact that they fail to tell you that if you black out, you lose half of your cash.
Obviously, this can be extremely problematic if you have no trainers to fight or items to sell, and Pay Day simply doesn’t cut it.
That said, by performing an easy trick, players needn’t worry about running out of cash ever again. Using the “How to Catch a Pokémon” glitch, you can multiply portions of your pack, meaning you’ll have infinite nuggets to sell!
23 Glitch City
While visiting “Glitch City” doesn’t really offer any benefit to curious players, it certainly fits into the designated criteria of “breaking the game.”
To visit this trippy “location,” you’ll need to trick the game while inside the Safari Zone.
If done correctly, the game will think that your Safari Zone “time” has run out outside the Safari Zone, and you’ll find yourself warped to… well, a place that definitely lives up to the name “Glitch City.”
There isn’t much to do here but marvel at the corruptions that surround you, but that’s still cool.
22 Cutting Grass
This trick isn’t a glitch at all, but something that, nonetheless, has slipped under the radar of countless Pokémon players, new and old. We all know that the Hidden Machine, Cut, is a decent attack in its own right, but it’s mostly used for cutting down errant bushes.
It does have another function, though, and it might blow your mind: you can cut the tall grass that Pokémon hide in.
Using Cut while standing in tall grass will remove the grass in a 2x2 square. It’s not totally useful, but it’s still pretty dang crazy that you can do it.
21 Visiting The Pokémon League Without Badges
Who could forget making it to the Indigo Plateau for the first time? Solely done for dramatic effect, players are forced to march through a lengthy area, being greeted by various guards who make sure they have the appropriate badges.
This built up so much tension, drama and emotion for the moment, but you can ignore it all and head straight to the Plateau without any of the hard work.
By performing a series of unusual glitches working in tandem, and walking in specific directions, you can reach the Elite Four without a single badge.
20 Going To Bill’s “Secret Garden”
Bill’s “secret garden” (i.e. the area behind his house) was the subject of all kinds of rumors, especially with anything related to the so-called “PokéGods.”
It actually IS possible to get to Bill’s Secret Garden, and although there isn’t anything mythical waiting for you, it might be worth a trip for hardcore fans.
Using the “Surf Down Glitch,” which allows you to Surf outside of an intended area by using the HM a tile away from water while holding down start, then saving and resetting.
Simply do that trick by the cottage and let us know if you find Pikablu!
19 Re-Boarding The SS Anne
While visiting Bill’s “Secret Garden” is something that many old school Pokémon fans have always dreamed of, there’s almost certainly another group that wanted to get back on the SS Anne.
Luckily, that’s entirely possible and, coincidentally, you simply need to use the very same “Surf Down Glitch” that allowed you to check out the Secret Garden.
Just perform the trick at the edge of the SS Anne’s dock, with Red facing right of the guard, and you’re ready to set sail!
18 Skip Pewter Gym
Brock seems cool, but what if you simply didn’t feel like battling him? What if you just wanted to get on with your life and skip the gym altogether? Well, we’ve got what you’re looking for.
The method involves getting past the kid that takes you to Pewter Gym by tricking the game into altering his position.
If done correctly, you’ll be “guided” around by an invisible NPC, and after saving and resetting, you’ll be treated to a series of bizarre events as the game attempts to right itself, and then you’ll be free to skip the gym.
17 Amnesia Psyduck
Pokémon Stadium is a brutally difficult game that boils down the entire Pokémon experience into the basics of hardcore strategy and tactical battles.
Excelling at it, even with home grown Pocket Monsters transferred from your Game Boy games, is something that requires a lot of practice and foresight.
However, if you manage to fill the Pokémon Stadium Hall of Fame with all 151 Pokémon, you’ll be rewarded with a Psyduck who knows Amnesia, which gives it an ungodly edge in battle.
16 Figuring Out The Slot Machines
Why a ten year-old is allowed to gamble in the Pokémon World is certainly an intriguing question, but there are far more important ones that should be asked instead (such as why ten year-olds are allowed to rough it in the wilderness with deadly creatures.)
Regardless, the slot machines in the original games function similarly to the slots in our own world, meaning they can become “hot” and offer greater odds.
In short, play every machine four times, and if one lets you win two or more times, stick with it and you’ll be filling your pockets.
15 Cycling Road With A Bike
Getting the Bicycle in Pokémon was incredibly empowering, as you could finally travel at speeds well beyond your character’s snail-like walking pace (at least when Oak would let you use the darn thing.)
Let’s say that you didn’t want a Bike, though, but you still wanted to travel on Cycling Road (where Bicycles are required.)
Well, you can do it by travelling to Celadon City, heading towards Cycling Road, hugging the northern wall and then simply holding the left button while the guard berates you for not having a Bike.
14 Visit The Cable Club Without Linking
Few things were as thrilling as going through the complex process of finding a friend with Pokémon, getting a Link Cable, physically linking the two Game Boys together and then battling or trading into the wee hours of the morning.
Wouldn’t it be neat to visit the off-limits Cable Club without a friend though? Indeed it would be, and you certainly can.
By piggy-backing off a series of complex glitches, you’ll be able to warp directly into the Cable Club… though its dimensional stability isn’t always reliable.
13 Surfing Pikachu
We talked about Pokémon Stadium earlier on this list, and how one can go through an excruciating grind in order to obtain Amnesia Psyduck.
Stadium has another secret Pokémon though, and that’s Surfing Pikachu.
To get this creature (which does exactly what you think) or teach the move to your Pikachu of choice, you’ll need to conquer the monstrously difficult Round 2 Prime Cup with a Game Boy-born Pikachu in an unregistered team. The Pikachu in question also needs to be in every battle.
If successful, you’ll unlock Pikachu’s surf abilities, plus a sweet minigame in the Yellow Version.
12 The Eevee Factory
Eevees are awesome critters due to their incredible evolutionary traits. Sadly, there’s only one Eevee per game, unless you trade with friends… or is there?
By using “text pointer manipulation,” (which is, essentially, altering a map’s table data,) you’ll trick the game into turning certain signs into the titular “Eevee Factories.”
What this means is that you walk up to one of the signs in question, and then attempt to read it. Instead of getting the standard message, you’ll instead get an Eevee.
It’s as crazy as it sounds.
11 Acquiring Mewtwo Before Beating The League
Mewtwo, in all its broken glory, is absolutely necessary when it comes to a powerful team, but you’ll have to wait until you beat the Elite Four to catch it… or do you?
Like so many entries on this list, the first step is to talk to the old man who teaches you how to catch Pokémon, and then fly to Cinnabar Island.
Surf on the edge of the island until you encounter MissingNo., run and then had to Seafoam Islands.
Surf along the edges of the islands until Mewtwo appears… and you might find more than one.
10 The Warped Hall of Fame
Despite offering no power-ups or methods to play the game in unintended ways, you can irreparably mutate the Hall of Fame into the "Chamber of Nightmares" by merely toying around with the infamous MissingNo.
You needn’t catch the creature, but after experiencing its power and/or using the glitch to multiply your items, the Hall of Fame on the PC will be filled with barbaric beasts that are so divine that human eyes are incapable of processing their warped forms, all of which are touting impossible strength.
9 Making Raichu “Evolve”
While this oddity might not cause the game to mutate into a collection of corruptions, but it’s still interesting in its own right. In short, one of the in-game trades involves giving an old man your Raichu in return for his Electrode.
Upon completion of the trade, the old man will excitedly exclaim that Raichu evolved.
This obviously made the already potent rumor mill go berserk, but the truth of the matter is that this is mere translation issue due to the trade conditions being altered from the Japanese version: originally you sent a Kadabra, which would obviously evolve.
8 Cloning Pokémon
Pokémon Gold and Silver had their own methods of cloning Pokémon, but Red and Blue started the trend. To pull off this trick, simply get two Game Boys, games, and a link cable, and trade the Pokémon you wish to have cloned.
With the right timing, the player that receives the Pokémon intended for cloning, the other Game Boy is shut off, then shut off the first Game Boy. If done right, both players will have a copy of the specific creature. Now just be careful that you don’t create a malevolent Pokémon that wishes to wipe out humankind.
7 All-Powerful Mutants
MissingNo.’s various effects on the Red and Blue Versions of Pokémon are well documented within this list and beyond, but perhaps its most intriguing power is how it creates ungodly, ultra-powerful PokéMutants.
After performing the typical MissingNo. trick, your Surfing on the edge of Cinnabar will start to conjure up frightening monstrosities that look nothing like the Pokémon you’re used to.
Some are big cubes, while others are an Aerodactyl skeleton, but pretty much all of them have one thing in common: they’re leveled well beyond 100.
6 Safari Pokémon Outside The Zone
The Safari Zone is fun distraction, but it can be frustrating to catch that elusive Scyther or, heave forbid, the ultra-rare Chansey, especially since you’ve only got bait, stones and a collection of Safari Balls.
If only you had access to your full roster of Pokémon! Then you could easily catch these rare and powerful creatures!
Luckily, you can do exactly that.
Go to the Safari Zone, leave, skip any encounters with wild Pokémon, and then surf along the east coast of any island on Route 20, and you’ll find yourself face-to-face with Safari Zone-exclusive Pocket Monsters.
5 Infinite Rare Candy
While infinite money by way of the item duplication glitch is certainly impressive, you might not need to worry about losing battles (and cash with them) if your team of Pokémon are all unstoppable, fully-leveled behemoths.
Rather than duplicating something like a Nugget, try duplicating Rare Candies.
With over 99 of them in your pack (and more to come if you repeat the glitch,) you can have every last one of your Pokémon reach their fullest potential in record time, and no Trainer in the game will be able to stop you.
4 Dokokashira Door Glitch
In only the Japanese version of the games, there are a series of bonkers and bizarre tricks that can be pulled off using the “Dokokashira Door Glitch.” The word “dokokashira” is best translated as “I wonder where it is?,” which is the perfect title for what the glitch actually does.
In short, performing a lengthy series of specific actions and movements will make certain doors warp players to just about anywhere in the game, including the hallowed Hall of Fame.
3 Getting Mew (Without A Truck)
Yes, it’s possible to get Mew without receiving one directly from Nintendo at an event, and here’s how:
With a fresh game, get Fly, and avoid the battling the Youngster on Route 25 and the Gambler on Route 8.
Go to Route 8, save the game, and then cross the Gambler’s path. Hit start the second you take the fateful step, which brings up the menu.
Fly to Cerulean, then head to the aforementioned Youngster, beat him, go to Lavender Town, then back to Route 8, and your menu will appear by itself.
Press B and voila, Mew will appear!
MissingNo., and its effects, is as iconic as Charizard or Venusaur at this point.
This corrupted, “Bird type” Pokémon with its mismatched tiles, bizarre moves and game-breaking abilities was frightening to children, and certainly the main ingredient in the fertilizer that caused the massive Pokémon rumor weed to grow exponentially.
MissingNo. on its own is one thing, but the fact that it plays a role in so many of these game breaking glitches is even crazier.
Knowing how to find it, and what to do with it, is the key to breaking Red and Blue in nearly every possible way.
1 Infinite Master Balls
Building off just about everything involving old men itching to teach Trainers how to catch creatures, conjuring mutant Pokémon, and the infamous MissingNo. itself, the supreme way to break the original Pokémon games is to use the item duplication glitch to max out your Master Balls.
Normally there’s a single Master Ball in the game, and most use it for Mewtwo. Now, you can have over 99 Master Balls, and you needn’t be so cautious about when and where to use it.
With your arsenal of unstoppable Pokémon catchers, you’ll be a Master in no time.