Pokémon has become one of the world’s most recognizable and (due, largely to its video game titles, one of the) most profitable franchises of all time. Since the debut of Pokémon Red & Green more than 20 years ago, these battling monsters have become household names, but that is not to say that the game’s creators are beyond reproach.
In fact, countless mistakes have been caught by its devoted fanbase over the years, and, in fact, these errors have become somewhat endearing. However, some of these so-called mistakes are so glaringly obvious, that it is incredible to think that developers missed them. But, while some of these errors are hiding in plain sight, more than a few are extremely difficult to come across in normal play.
Whatever the circumstances, there are likely a handful of mistakes on this list that even the keenest Pokémon fans might have missed. Think not? Well read on and find out for yourself. Here are 20 Shocking Mistakes in the Pokémon Games You Never Noticed.
20 Pokémon Weren't Always So Easy To Catch
Status moves, which usually increase a player’s ability to capture a Pokémon, had no effect on the capture rate in the game’s second generation. That means paralysis or sleep effects really did not make it any easier to catch a Pokémon.
Yes, these moves did make it easier to defeat a certain creature, but the percentage chance that a particular Pokémon would be easier to catch given a status condition is not altered in one way or another.
That means those legendary dogs–Entei, Raikou, and Suicune–which were incredibly difficult to track down, were even more difficult to capture due to this error. What can we say? The Pokémon Company really made players work for it back in the day.
19 This Move Shouldn't Be So Broken
In the original Pokémon generation games–i.e. Pokémon Red, Blue, and Yellow stateside–the move “Substitute” was broken in a very oddly specific way. If you were to use the move Substitute at exactly 25% HP, your Pokémon would automatically faint.
The intention of Substitute was to, of course, to eat up damage dealt by an opponent, but at 25%, this move was an instant forfeit in the first-generation titles.
Entire run-throughs of this game could be accomplished without this error occurring, simply because it is so specific. If a character’s HP is at, say, 24% or 26%, the move will operate just fine, but at 25%, a Pokémon will automatically faint. But hey, maybe just keep spamming Fire Blast instead.
18 A Strange Preview Of Things To Come
Most of the weird glitches and errors occurred earlier in the franchise’s catalog, but even Pokémon Sun & Moon are not immune to the occasional mistake.
This error, in particular, occurs awfully quickly, but even as subtle as it is, it is possible to spot a shadowed outline of the evolved form of a Pokémon in the corner of the screen seconds before it evolves. It is unknown as to why this happens, but considering how difficult it is to spot, most players are likely to play this game for dozens of hours without even noticing.
This preview of things to come does not give the ending away all that early, but that said, it is unlikely that the developers planned for this particular event to occur.
17 A Silent Sendoff Springs
In the franchise’s fourth-generation of games, players are able to reach the Sendoff Springs location after beating the Elite 4. However, after hopping on and off your bike a couple times, the music inexplicably stops. Like several glitches or errors on this list, it is very unlikely a player would come across this on accident.
The eeriness of the silence is alarming enough, but the faint beeping sounds in the background are also oddly disturbing. These relatively quiet beeping noises are reminiscent of a game of Pong, but it is unlikely that the developers included this glitch as some sort of a retro throwback.
To be frank, this is not the oddest mistake that players have come across, but is certainly not all too widely known and quite interesting, to say the least.
16 A Power Outage… But Not Really
According to a construction worker in Lumiose City, players cannot venture to a certain area of the town due to a blackout. If you are talking to him at night, however, it is easy to see that the lights behind the construction worker are fully functional. So, what gives? Why is this hard hat-wearing worker lying to trainers? Just what is he hiding?
The world may never know what this shifty NPC is actually up to, but it is obvious that the writers did not take this little detail into account when constructing this character’s dialogue. All in all, this is likely an editing oversight and not a tongue-in-cheek joke. But, who knows–the franchise’s writers have ignored weirder dialogue in the past.
15 This Old Guy's A Bit Mistaken
After trading a Raichu to an NPC on Cinnabar Island, the trainer will tell you that your Raichu evolved. He might just have buyer’s remorse, wanting his own Pokémon back, but it is more likely that the writers made a simple mistake here.
Even after seven generations of Pokémon games, Raichu has yet to receive an evolution, although the creature did receive an Alolan variant form, AKA Alolan Raichu. Still, given the fact that Alolan Raichu is simply a variant form and not a true evolution, it is also unlikely that the aforementioned NPC was referring to this creature either.
If this Raichu did, in fact, evolve, however, this NPC is a big jerk for not showing players what exactly this Pokémon transformed into.
14 I Guess She Could Have Moved...
In the first generation of Pokémon titles, a girl by the name of “Copycat” maintains a residence in Saffron City. However, a male character later in the game states that he is shopping for a girl named Copycat who lives in Cerulean City. Now, either these two are not the greatest of friends, or there was a mistake, yet again, made by the writing team.
It is also possible that Copycat moved. An entire fictional narrative could be derived in which this man shopping for gifts is some overly clingy ex-boyfriend who just cannot seem to take a hint. After months of being not-so-subtle, Copycat decided to pick up and skip town.
This might sound like a bit of a stretch, so let’s just saw the developers made a mistake.
13 No Arms, No Problem?
Wooper has the ability to learn Ice Punch. We will just let this fact sink in for a second.
Wooper has the ability to learn Ice Punch despite the fact that it does not have arms. How can Wooper punch another Pokémon if it does not have any arms? It just does not make any sense.
Odd moves, or even move omissions have been largely well known by players for quite some time–for example, Farfetch’d can learn the move fly despite the fact that this Pokémon is known as a flightless bird–but the obvious fact that Wooper is able to learn Ice Punch is probably lesser known because few trainers use Wooper. This Pokémon isn’t particularly strong or well liked, but Wooper fans out there might have noticed this oddity.
12 I Didn't Know He Could Teleport
In the first-generation remakes–Pokémon Leaf Green & Fire Red–Bill is in multiple cities simultaneously. And no matter how fast you travel between them, you cannot beat him there.
If players happen across Bill on Cinnabar Island, they would not be able to travel quickly enough to beat him to his home just north of Cerulean City. So, either Bill is extremely quick, or he is located in two places at the same time.
As a brilliant scientist, it is not beyond the realm of possibility that Bill could have somehow cloned himself. After all, Bill did manage to turn himself into a Pokémon, so a clone in another town might not be that big of a stretch.
11 This Should Not Be Possible
Since the gameplay mechanic was introduced in the franchise’s second generation, Pokémon breeding has become a necessary evil for trainers looking to max out their creatures’ respective stats or increase their chances at catching a shiny Pokémon.
As you might have guessed, Pokémon breeding involves… well, you know. And if you don’t, maybe ask your parents. Generally speaking, these types of things occur between two creatures of the same species or one Pokémon of a certain species and a Ditto.
We are not sure who discovered this disturbing detail, but apparently, Wailord, the largest Pokémon, and Diglett, one of the smallest, can mate. Wailord can also mate with Skitty, causing similar problems. This might not be an error per se, but it is weird, to say the least. But hey, we’re not here to judge.
10 Wait... Who Owns This Gym?
As far as errors are concerned, this next entry is frustratingly obvious. As mentioned earlier, the original titles from this franchise had significantly less polish than those that came after. This is not to say that no mistakes were made after the first generations, but most of which were. That said, most errors were not this obvious.
The greeter at the Viridian City Gym claims he does not know who the leader is, but the sign right next to him clearly states that Giovanni is the Gym Leader. Either this is the laziest gym employee of all time, or it was written by one of the laziest translators of all time. Take your pick.
9 Fickle Weather
The weather is generally known for being quite fickle, but this next mistake is on another level entirely.
In the fourth generation of the monster battling series, an odd Pokémon weather glitch causes the game to go absolutely crazy as the weather will change every turn. Interestingly enough, if Castform is currently battling, it will continue to change forms as the weather alternates.
The steps to achieve this glitch are quite strenuous, so we won’t get into details in this post, but take our word for it when we state that most gamers have not likely come across this mistake in standard gameplay sessions.
8 The Worst Move In The Entire Series
If you were to ask most fans what the most useless move in all of Pokémon is, the common answer would likely be “Splash.” That title would actually belong to Focus Energy, however. Focus Energy cuts a Pokémon’s chance of scoring a critical hit in half, rather than doubling it as advertised.
In other words, Focus Energy is absolutely the worst movie in the Pokémon games, or, at least it used to be. Focus Energy has since been fixed in all subsequent franchise titles.
Again, gamers might be better off spamming Fire Blast repeatedly rather than using this useless status move. Seriously, even Splash would have been a better choice.
7 No Mountain Is Too High For Magikarp
Speaking of the move Splash, did you know that a Pokédex entry claims that Magikarp can jump over a mountain? We know that hiding deep inside each and every Magikarp is the ability to transform into a massive and powerful Gyarados, but the ability to jump over a mountain is seriously impressive.
However, there is no actual evidence in any of the lore to support this claim as it seems rather unbelievable. In all of the anime episodes, manga chapters, video games, and even the training card game, there has been no supporting evidence to suggest that Magikarp is actually capable of jumping over a mountain.
6 So... What's The Truth, Ivysaur?
In the first generation of Pokémon games, Ivysaur is accompanied by a Pokédex entry that claims this creature cannot stand on its back two legs. However, in the picture included in the entry, the Pokémon is inexplicably standing on–you guessed it–its two hind legs.
How this error managed to make it past the editing team is beyond us. This mistake is so blatantly obvious that it almost feels like an odd troll. Seriously, the picture is right there. Ivysaur is standing on its hind legs, but the Pokédex says that is impossible. Maybe our Ivysaur is special, but we doubt it. Argh! Go home Pokédex, you’re drunk.
5 This Is A Very Incomplete Rainbow
Another Pokédex entry states that Ho-Oh contains within its feathers all of the colors of the rainbow, but simply by looking at this Pokémon, players can easily see that this is false.
We are not sure who the Pokédex is trying to fool at this point, as we have already have proven this device to be quite unreliable. Either way, this is a pretty obvious flaw. Anyone who does not suffer from color blindness can easily see on the same screen that Ho-Oh is drawn with only a small handful of colors–not the entire rainbow.
At this point, a case could be made that the Pokédex is one of the biggest trolls in gaming history.
4 This Is Only A Little Spooky
In a certain building within Lumiose City, a creepy ghost girl will appear and say “no, you’re not the one” just before she disappears. The game’s creators have claimed they did not put this terrifying character into the game. But if the game’s creators did not write this character into the game, who did? (Cue the ominous thunder and lightning.)
In all likelihood, the inclusion of ghost girl is actually a spooky joke but is also possible that some developer snuck this little secret into the game at the last second. We cannot say for sure if this girl is actually a mistake, but it is certainly interesting.
3 Maybe It's His Wrestler Name
At this point in our countdown of biggest mistakes in Pokémon games, it is quite apparent that the writing team has been asleep at the wheel on more than a few occasions. But for the sake of sufficient evidence, here are a few more examples.
The Pokémon Mawile is spelled “Mawhile” in its own Pokédex entry. Right above its entry, the name is spelled correctly, but again, the device has been proven to be unreliable at best. Honestly, it is as if the Pokédex team was writing an entirely different game.
Also, the first generation of Pokémon games were grammatically challenged at certain points, saying things like “The BROCK wants to fight!”
2 This Game Is Just Incredibly Glitched
In-game glitches have allowed players to perform impossible tasks from battling the world-famous Pokémon Professor, Professor Oak, to gaining a level 100 Nidoking before facing your first gym leader, and much more.
Sure, players are fully aware of glitches such as MissingNo., and, at this point, most fans are now aware of the true method for catching Mew in the original generation games. That said, there are plenty of other glitches that have flown under the radar over the years.
For example, Pokémon in the Safari Zone can be caught outside the park if a certain glitch is triggered, the S.S. Anne can be skipped entirely, and players can fish on (or in) statues.
1 We Were Fooled So Easily
Some fans may be surprised to find that countless knockoffs of Pokémon Ruby & Sapphire were created, and while they were pretty difficult to spot, but extremely easy to make. In fact, it was not just Pokémon titles that were easy to fake, but rather all Game Boy Advance titles.
The real disturbing part of it all is that counterfeits were pretty difficult to identify, even by those who know what to look for. Many consumers who purchased games online would be surprised to find that their titles might actually be fakes, but those bought new in retail stores likely have nothing to fear. Still, this was quite an issue back in the day. Luckily, Nintendo has gotten better concerning matters like this over the years, so counterfeit games are far less of an issue today.