Let's Play Pokémon Red Rumors [Finished]

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Hello! I'm Pgj1997. You might know me from my YouTube channel. I recently found out that text-based let's plays are still a thing, so I deicided to make one for a ROM hack I found not too long ago that definitely needs more attention.

The ROM hack I'll be playing is called "Pokémon Red Rumors", a hack by a user on the PokéCommunity forums named "NobodySociety". This ROM hack incorporates many of the playground rumors and hoaxes surrounding the Gen I games, on top of lots of QoL improvements. I've already played a bit of this on my own time, so I know some of what to expect. So, let's get into this.

Oh, and in case you're wondering, yes, I am using an emulator with the Super Game Boy enhancements enabled. Simply because I think the Super Game Boy is cool, especially when you're playing a game that was programmed with it in mind like this one. If you have a problem with that, kindly deal with it.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Sun Apr 21, 2024 3:21 am, edited 6 times in total.

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Right off the bat, we get our first new addition to this hack. The option to play as a female. I'll be playing as the male, of course, but here's what the female Trainer looks like if you're curious:

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To be honest, I don't know where this sprite is from, but I believe she's designed after Green from the Pokémon Adventures manga.

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For this let's play, I'll be using our protagonist and Rival's official names. Those being "Red" and "Blue", respectively.

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First off, before we do anything else, we have to check the PC just to see if there are any items inside. Turns out there's an item called a "GameShark" inside. That sound useful, so let's take it. Selecting it from our bag, and selecting "Info" reads as follows.
A true relic of the 90s.
Sure, I guess. Even though third-party cheat codes are still very much a thing, it's just that they aren't bound to cartridges anymore. They're something you install through hacked consoles (you know, like Luma3DS, Gecko, and EdiZon?). Technicalities aside, here's what it does:

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Obviously, I won't be abusing this item all that much. That would be boring. But this does have some handy features like giving us max Game Corner coins, and resetting the step counter in the Safari Zone.

Also, here's our first quality of life improvement: You can hold B to run, just like in the later games. Anyway, let's get our starter. Same as usual, just attempt to walk into Route 1, and Oak will stop you and bring you to his lab.

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We all know that Squirtle is the best pick for the Starter in Gen I, so we'll go with that. Don't get too angry about this though (especially you, Charizard stans), because soon this choice won't matter. With that, we initiate our first battle with Blue

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An interesting change to this game is that it now uses the Gen II sprites, including a complete resprite of Red's backsprite. Even though this makes the game look less like Gen I, this is for the better in my opinion. We all know most of the sprites in Gen I are absolute dogshit unless you're playing Yellow. Oh yeah, and all the names are properly cased. That's nice. Anyway, this is an easy first fight. Just keep spamming Tackle like always. Unless you're extremely unlucky, you'll win.

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He said the thing.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Fri Mar 15, 2024 2:36 am, edited 4 times in total.

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As always, most of Viridian is blocked off by a man passed out drunk (no, seriously. It's censored in the American version, but it's flat out stated that he's suffering from a hangover in the Japanese script).

We'll head to the Poké Mart, pick up Oak's Parcel, and head back to Pallet Town. We'll give Oak his parcel, and he'll give us 5 Poké Balls, and the PokéDex. Let's head back to Viridian, and start our adventure for real this time. On the way, we'll stop by Blue's house and get the Town Map from his sister (who I don't think has a canonical name, now that I think about it...)

Edit: Apparently, her name is Daisy. That's neat.

On my way back to Viridian, I encountered a Rattata, and caught it solely for PokéDex completion. It won't be on our team for very long, but maybe we'll get some use out of it.

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The guy who was blocking the path earlier finally had his hangover subside coffee, and is asking us if we're in a hurry. Saying "no" will initiate a tutorial on how to catch Pokémon. We already know how to do that (at least, I'm hoping everyone reading this does), so we'll say "yes". However, this guy will probably be useful later. There's a certain thing you can do with this guy very late into the game that I'm sure will trigger something, given this hack's premise. So let's remember him just in case.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Wed Mar 20, 2024 1:48 pm, edited 13 times in total.

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On the way to Viridian Forest, you'll notice that the overworld sprite for items actually looks like a Poké Ball now. That's neat.

Okay, so I spent a lot of time in Viridian Forest. Not just for grinding, but to find a Pikachu. Because I like to have a Pikachu on my team when I play Pokémon games. Fight me. I caught a Caterpie, a Weedle, and a Pidgey. Squirtle learned Bubble during this process, so we finally have a Water-type move to deal with Brock later.

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It seems like the Trainers are named now, just like in the later games. I wonder if the creator of this hack used the FRLG names, or if he just made all of them up.

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Like 10 or 15 minutes later, I finally found a Pikachu. I'll also take this time to show off another QoL improvement in this hack. Move types, power, and accuracy are now displayed in the battle menu. It also tells you whether a move is Physical or Special. I'm not entirely sure if this game implemented the Physical/Special split introduced in Gen IV, but either way, very handy.

Edit: Okay, so, get this. The ZIP file containing the IPS patch for this ROM hack comes with three text files: "Credits", "Changes", and the third one I won't spoil. I wish I read those before starting this LP, because they contain a lot of useful information. Silly me for wanting to go into this partially blind, I guess. Anyway, the important part is that "Changes" clarifies that the Physical/Special split is indeed present here. Good to know. That somewhat helps balance things out.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Wed Mar 20, 2024 2:52 pm, edited 5 times in total.

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To the left of the Museum in Pewter City is this house that wasn't in the original game. Let's take a look inside, shall we?

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We're sorry but the path to Brick Town is closed.
The whole place is on lockdown.
What they need is a really strong trainer.
Like maybe the Elite Four.
Took a little bit, but the "Rumors" part of this ROM hack's name is finally starting to show itself. Since we can't do anything about this right now, I'll save the details for later. Just know that this is based on one of the many rumors surrounding Gen I.

On the second floor in the Museum, an NPC has this to say:

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I asked my Daddy to catch me one!
His friend, who works at Celedon Game Corner has a special Pikachu, but she can't control it.
Hey, wait a minute. That second part wasn't in the original game. Looks like another thing we'll pin for later. (I think I have an idea of what this is foreshadowing. If you know anything about Pokémon rumors, you probably should too. Truthfully, I initially didn't play that far to know. So we'll find out together!).

With that out of the way, let's head to Pewter City, and face Brock. As a general tip, make sure to face all the Trainers in every gym. Because it's EXP you'll miss out on otherwise, as the Trainers won't challenge you after you defeat the Gym Leader.

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Since I picked Squirtle, all I had to do was spam Bubble to win.

Yeah, in case you haven't noticed, I haven't been showing off any actual Trainer battles in this. Because so far, it's unchanged. Whenever I skim over anything major like that, assume it's exactly the same as it was in vanilla, so it wasn't worth talking about.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Fri Mar 15, 2024 7:43 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Sounds like an interesting premise for a romhack.

I'll follow along, although I won't post much unless I actually have something to comment about.

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On Route 3, we have this trainer.
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Oh hey, it actually is the same guy. He shares the name of the Trainer in that screenshot I posted earlier. That's a nice attention to detail. I swear me pointing this out wasn't intentional.

We also have...
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Squirtle learned Water Gun after this fight. A few battles later, it evolved into Wartortle. I also found a Jigglypuff and caught it. Thankfully, that didn't take as long.

And with that, we enter Mt. Moon. Zubat ahoy!

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Inside the Mt. Moon Pokémon Center is the Magikarp salesman. Of course we'll take it. It's not a secret anymore as to what this thing evolves into. Which reminds me, there was a rumor that Splash has the same chance of getting a 1-Hit KO as moves like Guillotine and Fissure. I wonder if that's actually the case here, given the ROM hack's premise. I'm definitely not wasting my time trying to find out, but everyone else is free to check for me.

While inside Mt. Moon, I caught a Zubat. Funnily enough, it appeared right after I read the sign that said "Warning: Zubat is a blood-sucker!" It felt like a scripted encounter, since I didn't even move a step after I exited the text box. Either way, it was amusing. After a battle with a Trainer that had a surprisingly tough Clefairy, Pikachu learned Tail Whip (whatever) and Rattata learned Quick Attack (very useful). A few battles later, Pidgey also learned Quick Attack, and Pikachu learned Thunder Wave. I also managed to catch...

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Anyways, after the battle with the maniac, we get to choose which fossil we want.

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Because memes.

Hope there's some way to get the other fossil at some point.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Fri Mar 15, 2024 2:25 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Did a bit of grinding on Route 3 to level up Pikachu. During that, I caught an Ekans, and a Spearow. I raised Pikachu up to level 11, where he learned Quick Attack, then decided to continue on.

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Inside this house, we have a man who will trade a Poliwhirl for a Jynx, as well as a girl with a Bulbasaur next to her. She has this to say:
I take care of injured Pokémon.
I nursed this Bulbasaur back to health.
It needs a good trainer to take care of it now.
That's two things to remember for later. Right now, let's head to the gym, and fight Misty. While battling the gym Trainers, Magikarp learned tackle. Yay. Now it's slightly useful.

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(I forgot to screenshot me getting the badge in-battle :P )

In the house where the girl with the Bulbasaur was, she now has this to say.

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I know! Would you take care of this Bulbasaur?
Red got Bulbasaur!
Please take care of Bulbasaur!
Remember how I said our choice of starter won't matter? This is why. I think this is based on a rumor, kinda. You see, there were a good number of rumors that involved being able to catch the rest of the starters. Because the only way to get them in Gen I was to trade for them, and obviously no one wanted to do that because you only get one per save file. The reason I say "kinda" is because, in this hack, you get the starters the same way you do in Yellow. Of course, here it's based on gym badges instead of friendship. Melanie here just gave us our first one. Bulbasaur. It's at level 10, so it's not too far behind right now.

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Guillotine and Fissure both have an accuracy of 30%. In gen 1, if it hits, and if the user has a higher speed stat than the opponent, the move always causes an OHKO.

So if should be quite easy to find out if that rumor works, just find a slow pokemon to try Splash on.

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Going North of Cerulean City, we'll be now heading to Route 24. But not before another match with Blue. Of note, Blue had an Abra on his team. It's implied he just caught it, so it just kept spamming Teleport, which does nothing in Trainer battles. Not sure if that was in vanilla, but that's hilarious. Very in-character for Blue.


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He said the thing. Again.

Now, onto Nugget Bridge. This will give us an opportunity to get some more EXP for our Bulbasaur so it can catch up with the rest of our team. Bulbasaur learned Vine Whip after the first battle, and on the fourth battle, Pikachu learned Double Team, replacing Tail Whip. Lastly, after the fifth and final battle, Pidgey evolved into Pidgeotto. After that, we receive the promised Nugget at the end of the bridge, and get challenged by a Rocket Grunt.

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So I guess grunts are unnamed in this hack. Must be technical limitations,

Before heading to Bill's house, I took a detour to the left side of the route to look for an Abra. Abra is infamously tricky, since it only knows Teleport in the wild, so it'll escape from you on its turn. I had a plan to put Jigglypuff in the lead, put it to sleep, and hope for the best afterwards. I tried that, but the Abra was faster. Then I decided to just go for it. The result?

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Hell yeah! This was well worth it too, because Psychic-types are super overpowered in Gen I. While I was searching, I also caught an Oddish. Jigglypuff learned Pound during my search, so now she can actually do damage. Not that she'll be doing that, since I replaced her with my newly-caught Abra.

Now we have this guy:
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I'm not good at raising Pokémon.
I should release my Charmander because I haven't raised it well.
If you promise you'll care for it, it's your's.
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Take good care of my Charmander!
Thanks, Daimian. Only two gym badges in, and we already have all the starters. Things are looking good for us. We won't be putting Charmander on our team just yet. I'm gonna wait until Magikarp finally evolves. Speaking of evolving, Bulbasaur evolved into Ivysaur on the way to Bill's house. See? What did I tell you?

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It's a shame we aren't playing Yellow. This scene's more hilarious in that game. Anyway, we returned Bill to his human form, and received the S.S. Ticket.

On the way out of Cerulean, Wartortle learned Bite, replacing Tackle.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Thu Mar 28, 2024 2:36 am, edited 3 times in total.

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On Route 5, I placed Abra in the Daycare. There's not much it can do right now anyway. Don't worry, we'll come back for it in a little bit.

In the Underground Path to Vermillion, there's a girl that will trade a male Nidoran for a female Nidoran. We don't have one at the moment, so we'll add this on our list of things pinned for later.

Saffron City's got a lot of things to do in it, so this will take a while

I headed up at the Pokémon Center, and got Charmander out of the PC.

Went to the house to the left of the Pokémon Center, and got the Old Rod from the Fishing Guru. Insert dick joke here.

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Some Squirtle around here is always getting into mischief.
Prof. Oak gave you a Squirtle? And it behaves?
You must be a good trainer!
Take this, and raise your Squirtle right!
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So it looks like Officer Jenny was going to give us a Squirtle, but since we already picked Squirtle as our starter, we get a Rare Candy instead. I'm assuming Melanie and Damian also have unique dialouge if you picked Bulbasaur or Charmander respectively.

With that out of the way, I board the S.S. Anne, and battle Blue once again. Afterwards, Magikarp finally evolved into Gyarados, and learned Bite.

After (contrary to popular belief) not killing Blue's Raticate in that battle, you'll never guess what Blue said next.
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Anyway, before getting the Cut HM, I exited the S.S. Anne, and deposited every Pokémon in the PC except Gyarados. I'll explain why in a bit. Then I went back.

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I don't know why, but this scene gives me the creeps.

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Good night, everybody!

Okay, so what we're going to do now is throw a battle with one of the Trainers on the ship. Because we don't want the S.S. Anne to leave. If we throw a battle, we get kicked back to the Pokémon Center, and the ship will stay there. Again, you'll know why if you know remotely anything about Pokémon rumors. In case you've been living under a tr- I mean, a rock, just know that this will be important for later. Gyarados still knows Splash, so I'll just spam that until I lose.

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Back at the Pokémon Center to get our party back, this guy wasn't here before. Let's talk to him.
huff... ...puff
I just got done running here from Silph Co.
Bill, the PokéManiac, ordered this and I'm to give it to him on the S.S. Anne.
What!
The ship left already?
How am I going to give this to him now?
Wait, he wasn't even on the ship?
Oh, he gave you his ticket.
Hmm... if you know him then...
Hey! Could you do me a favor and deliver this to him?
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Looks like we have a sidequest on our hands! If you didn't notice by that dialogue, the game is assuming the S.S. Anne left. But it didn't. It's likely that the actual trigger for this NPC to spawn is obtaining Cut from the captain. I'm sure the developer of this ROM hack accounted for that. Anyway, here's the item description:
A parcel belonging to Bill.
Okay, then. You heard the man. Let's deliver this parcel to Bill! On the way, I picked up Abra from the daycare. It's at level 15 now, if you're curious.

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What's that? A parcel for me?
Oh, this is the part I ordered for my machine.
Gee pal.
You keep helping me out...
I know! I'll let you into my secret garden!
Rare Pokémon have been known to show up there.
I've even spotted my favorite Pokémon out there.
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And here we have our first fully-fledged rumor represented in the game: Bill's Garden. You've probably noticed that, in the vanilla game, there's three empty tiles behind Bill's house. It's likely an oversight, but this spawned a rumor about a so-called garden located back there that contains things like the starters or some made up legendries. In actuality, if you use a walk through walls cheat to go up there, it leads to nowhere, and there's nothing of interest in that spot. Apparently, the rumor was the basis for the Sevii Islands in FRLG, so that's cool.

Here, we can encounter Eevee (like Bill said), Magmar, Sandshrew, Meowth, Pinsir, Bellsprout, and Vulpix. With the exception of Eevee, those are actually all Pokémon normally exclusive to Blue (because remember, we're playing Red here). All of these Pokémon also have pretty good experience yields, which also makes this a decent spot for EXP grinding. We can come back here whenever we want.

It's here that I'd like to praise this hack on how it handles the titular rumors. As we all know, all of those "secrets" that were spread around for these games back in the 90s were, more often than not, just shitposts. All they boiled down to were a list of instructions that made you do completely ridiculous and tedious things promising something super powerful, but all they did was waste your time. There's none of that here. The game doesn't have you do anything too egregious, and it's all naturally incorporated into the game's story, which I appreciate a lot. According to the PokéCommunity forum post, the developer said he did it this way partly because it's easier to program (do you really want to be the poor sap who has to defeat the Elite Four 100 times in a row just to see if that one secret works properly?) Honestly, a good call. Because this is much cooler and satisfying.

After this mindblowing discovery, it's off we go back to Vermillion City.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Mon Mar 18, 2024 2:30 am, edited 6 times in total.

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Unfortunately, this isn't Gen VII, so we're gonna need an HM slave for most of the game. I'll put Pidgeotto in the PC for now, and exchange it for the Sandshrew I caught earlier. Surf and Fly will later go to Wartortle and Charmander respectfully once they fully evolve.

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That brings us to our next quality of life improvement. You can now press A on roadblocks to get rid of them with HM moves, just like in the later games. In vanilla, you had to go all the way to the Pokémon menu every time you wanted to use an HM move.

On Route 9, Abra evolved into Kadabra, and learned Confusion and Kinesis. Charmander also learned Leer. I also caught an Ekans.

It was then when I realized Route 9 was the wrong way to go, as I found out "Oh right, you need Flash to make it actually traversable". Oops. That was a waste of time. :P

Back at Vermillion, I used Cut on the tree near the gym. Time to fight Lt. Surge.

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Remember when Pokémon games took place on Earth before that was retconned? Good times.

This is the first Gym Puzzle in the entire series. This one's pretty simple. Look through the garbage cans until you find one with a switch. The second switch will always be adjacent to the first one. During my battles with the gym Trainers, Sandshrew learned Sand Attack, a move I recently learned is pretty broken if you spam it.

Before facing Lt. Surge, I decided to follow my own advice, and grind for a little bit at Bill's Garden to level up Sandshrew to level 20. During my grind, Charmander evolved into Charmeleon. And since this hack uses the Gen II sprites, Charmeleon has a backsprite that's actually nice-looking. Sandshrew also learned Slash. That was definitely worth it, because Sandshrew single-handedly carried me through Lt. Surge's battle. It even survived a Self-Destruct from Surge's Voltorb. What a champ!

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Afterwards, I stopped by the Pokémon Fan Club to get the Bike Voucher after listening to the chairman ramble on about his Rapidash.

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Also, this guy has a Pikachu, and it seems like he reacted since I have one in my party. Was that in vanilla? If so, it's the first time I heard about this. If not, nice little Easter egg not many are going to see.

The house next door has the girl who will trade a Farfetch'd for a Spearow. Fortunately, I caught one earlier. One quick trip to the Pokémon Center later, and I got it. Just like in vanilla, it's nicknamed "Dux", which we can't do anything about, unfortunately, since we got it from a trade.

Coming up, we'll be heading to the infamous Lavender Town. Oh boy.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Tue Mar 19, 2024 12:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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First thing's first. Let's head back to Cerulean, and trade in the Bike Voucher for a Bicycle. Fun fact: it was recently discovered that there's a glitch here (in vanilla, at least). If you talk to the owner, press B, and then immediately press Start afterwards, all the text boxes from then on will appear instantaneously. It's only really useful for speedrunning, but it's just another example of the copious amount of spaghetti code that plagues Gen I. Sure, that's why we love it in retrospect, but still.

On the lookout inside the gate to Route 12 is someone who will trade a Nidorino for a Nidorina. Another thing to pin for later. One of Professor Oak's Aides is also here, and will give us the ItemFinder if we've registered at least 30 Pokémon in our PokéDex. It's basically the Dowsing Machine from the later games. It detects hidden items. I know there's people who have all of the hidden items commited to memory, but I'm not one of them. Some of them are telegraphed well, though (if there's a rock in the middle of nowhere, chances are it houses a hidden item). We can't actually traverse through Route 12 yet, since there's a Snorlax sleeping in the middle of the road. Gotta love these conveniently placed roadblocks in these early Pokémon games!

Anyway, now that we have a Bike, we can travel through Cycling Road later.

Full disclosure, I had to look up where the Flash HM is. It's all the way back in Viridian. On the way there, the house near Diglett's Cave has a boy that will trade an Abra for a Mr. Mime. Looks like we'll have to catch another Abra at some point. Don't worry, all this backtracking will be a lot painless very soon. South of that is the gate to Viridian with another one of Professor Oak's Aides. He'll give us the Flash HM. I gave it to Pikachu, replacing Double Team. Don't worry about me, Mt. Moon was a pain, but Kadabra still knows Teleport, which brings you to the last Pokémon Center you visited. Anyway, now we can traverse Rock Tunnel. I believe it is possible to brute force your way through Rock Tunnel without Flash. But use Flash anyway, it'll save you the headache.

During my trek through Rock Tunnel, Kadabra learned Disable. Pikachu also wanted to learn Slam, but we'll miss out; Quick Attack is the better move (it skips speed checks, and always gets the first turn). Wartortle also learned Withdraw, replacing Tail Whip.

And with that, we finally made it to Lavender Town, with its infamous theme that's, in all honesty, more ear-piercingly annoying than it is creepy. (The arrangements in later games are better, though)

We won't be here for long, since there's not much we can do at the moment.

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We're finally able to buy Great Balls, which brings us to the next quality of life improvement. In Gen I, the multipliers for Great and Ultra Balls were swapped by accident, so Great Balls were all you needed for the rest of the game. That's been fixed here. We can also buy Super Potions and Revives, which we'll need a lot of, so buy as many as you can.

Up next is Celedon City, which has a lot of things to do in it. Be ready for that.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Tue Apr 02, 2024 11:25 pm, edited 9 times in total.

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GET IT?

Caught a Mankey on Route 8

Welcome to Celedon City! There's lots to do here, so we're gonna be here a while.

Before we do anything, though, remember that the little girl at the Pewter City Museum said that there's someone with a special Pikachu here. Let's keep that in mind while we're here.

In the house two places left of the Pokémon Center are these guys.

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MatPat: Hello, stranger! And welcome to Game Theory!
Or...
at least a Game Cameo!
I'm on vacation with Steph and BabyPat.
You know, one interesting thing I researched during the making of my videos is ciphers.
I brought some research on ciphers.
It's there on the table.
Give it a gander, if you like!
What even is this?

Reading the clipboard on the table reads as follows:
Ciphers are algorithms for performing encryption or decryption.
One of the most difficult to solve uses alphabetic text and a series of interwoven letters based on a keyword.
The keyword can be anything.
A word that means something to the encoder is often the keyword.
An example could be a favorite thing or animal.
Okay, so, I guess we'll be solving a cipher at some point. Other than that, let's just pretend this scene didn't happen, and go next door.

After that completely immersion-breaking scene, we enter the Celedon Mansion. On the third floor is the Game Freak office, like usual.

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I'm the game designer!
Filling up your Pokédex is tough, but don't quit!
When you finish, come tell me!
I wonder if this is still Satoshi Tajiri, or the creator of the ROM hack. Up to interpretation, I guess.

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Messing with it could bug out the game!
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I love a good fourth wall joke.

Entering the Celedon Mansion through the secret back entrance brings us to the place where we'd get an Eevee in vanilla. But we can just catch Eevee in this game, so what do we get instead?

Well first, we have this guy:
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Tom: Hmm...? Forgive me, I was reminiscing.
Are you a fellow wanderer?
This world is different from the others I've seen.
It's small.
Quiet.
Vastly different from mine.
Even the faces I've seen are somehow...
Different.
Hmm?
The look you just gave me.
Perhaps, you understand.
Please, tell me your name.
Red.
...
When I came to this world, some of my diary got scattered.
It seems 3 are missing.
I believe 1 landed in this city with me.
If you are interested.
Huh... Intriguing. Let's keep an eye out for those. This sounds like the start of a subplot.

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That totally doesn't sound ominous. Let's head inside.

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I know everything about the world of Pokémon in your Game Boy!
Get together with your friends and trade Pokémon.
Oh, so that's what that meant. That's a relief.

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Looks like instead of an Eevee, there's a Porygon here. Okay, now the question is what's the grand prize at the Game Corner?

Let's head next door to the Celedon Department Store. Lots of useful items here.

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On the fourth floor, we can buy an item called a "Link Cable". Unfortunately, this won't let us travel through the Pokémon multiverse (kudos if you get that reference), but what it does offer is our next quality of life improvement. We can use this like an Evolution Stone on any Pokémon that normally evolves through trading. Most of us are playing this through an emulator anyway, so this is a godsent. I bought one, and evolved Kadabra into Alakazam.

On the roof, we'll buy two drinks from a vending machine. Why two? Well...

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I'm thirsty! I want something to drink!
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Yay!
Fresh Water!
Thank you!
You can have this from me!
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This is based on a pretty obscure rumor that I had to look up. It's said that if you talk to this girl enough times, she'll eventually give you a made-up Pokémon so you'll leave her alone. Here, we can be nice, and quench her thirst. We're instead rewarded with TM13 (which is Ice Beam, by the way).

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Here's the answer to my question from earlier. The creator of this ROM hack is in this house to the right of the Game Corner playing Dungeons & Dragons with what I'm assuming is his friend group. That Pokémon over there is a Meowth nicknamed "Sugar" (as indicated by its cry when you talk to it). I'm assuming this is supposed to represent his pet cat. The only thing really of note here is this note on the table next to his PC.
Taking a break from working on Rumor Red to play some good ol' DnD.
-NobodySociety
So I guess this hack was originally going to be called "Pokémon Rumor Red", but he changed it at some point. For the better in my opinion. "Pokémon Red Rumors" rolls off the tongue a lot better. Always nice to hear about what games could have been, fanmade or not.

I find it really fitting that you can find the creator of the ROM hack in the same town as Game Freak. It's kind of poetic in a way.

We head South to the diner, and get the Coin Case from the man salty about losing all his money playing slots. We've all been there, buddy...

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Hey so, in vanilla, this hotel has an oversight. The room uses the same layout as a Pokémon Center, so if you press A on this tile right here, you'll access an invisible PC. Let's see if that still works.

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It's like they knew I'd try it.

Before we head to the gym, let's stop at the Celedon Game Corner.

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The prizes at the first window are Abra, Chansey, and Dratini. Hey! There was a Trainer who wanted to trade for an Abra! What a coincidence!

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The prizes at the second window are Scyther, Kangashkhan, and Tauros. Tauros being the grand prize.

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You know, we could sit here for a few hours until we have enough coins to purchase everything...

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Nah, fuck that. Let's make good use of our GameShark, and give ourselves as many coins as we need to buy whatever we want.

With Abra in hand, I trekked all the way back to Viridian to trade it for Mr. Mime. On the way, I caught a Geodude and a Paras in Mt. Moon. Because I haven't done that up until now.

On the way back through Diglett's Cave, I caught a Diglett. No Dugtrio, though. I gave my other Fresh Water to a guard in one of the gates, so all it took was a quick detour through Saffron City to get back to Celedon. Fly cannot come sooner.

Okay, with aaaaaaall of that out of the way, let's take on the Celedon Gym, and face Erika.

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Good night, everybody!

After the first Trainer battle, Sandshrew evolved into Sandslash. After the seventh Trainer battle, Charmeleon learned Rage, replacing Growl.

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I told you there was a lot to do here! Wasn't able to find that special Pikachu, though. I wonder where it could be...

Next time, we head to the Team Rocket Hideout.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Thu Mar 28, 2024 2:53 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Just noticed this romhack added gender to the Pokemon. This was only introduced in Gen 2, because it also introduced breeding.

Wonder if they somehow brought breeding to this game.

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Carbon dioxide wrote:
Sun Mar 17, 2024 3:33 pm
Just noticed this romhack added gender to the Pokemon. This was only introduced in Gen 2, because it also introduced breeding.

Wonder if they somehow brought breeding to this game.
Doubt it. When I put Abra in the Daycare, the manager didn't ask if I wanted to put another one in.

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We all know where the Team Rocket Hideout is. It's in the Game Corner. Interact with the poster near the counter, and it'll reveal a switch that spawns a staircase to the right. But first we gotta fight a Grunt.

Nothing much else to say about the Team Rocket Hideout except the warp tile puzzles aren't as annoying as I remember them being. Subversion: it's the hideout itself that's annoying, because holy hell is this place confusing to navigate through. It took me, like, ten minutes of aimless wandering until I found out you were supposed to talk to a random Grunt that humorously drops the Lift Key right next to him for you to pick up.

Anyway, I fought Giovanni, and Wartortle evolved into Blastoise. Giovanni left behind the Silph Scope, which I grabbed.

Checked through the entirety of Celedon one last time to see if I missed anything.

At the Celedon Department Store, I gave the Thirsty Girl a Soda Pop, and she gave me TM48 (Rock Slide). I sensed a pattern here, so I gave her a Lemonade, and she gave me TM49 (Tri-Attack). Because I was curious, I gave her another Fresh Water, but...
No thank you! I'm not thirsty after all!
I did talk to her brother nearby though, and he gave me TM23 (Dragon Rage) for helping out.

Well, I walked through the entirety of the city and, unfortunately, I wasn't able to find that special Pikachu. The only person I haven't talked to is this guy, but he's out of our reach right now, since we don't have Surf at the moment. Hopefully, he's our key.
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Next, it's off to Lavender Town again to obtain the Poké Flute.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Mon Mar 18, 2024 2:40 am, edited 4 times in total.

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On the way to Lavender Town, Ivysaur learned PoisonPowder (no, that's not a typo, that's just how it's spelled here. Remember, character limits were a thing that existed at one point), replacing Growl.

I've made it very clear that I hate listening to the Gen I version of Lavender Town, so let's make a B-line to Pokémon Tower and get this over with.

On the second floor of the tower is Blue, who we initiate another fight with. To expand upon a quip I said earlier, no, we didn't kill Blue's Raticate on the S.S. Anne, and he's not here to mourn the loss of it. He just so happened to be here. This is a theory that was disproven not too long ago. You see, Blue's Raticate was actually quite under-leveled. It was at level 16, when Rattata normally evolve at level 20. And Blue had a Rattata during the battle in Cerulean City, so what gives? Well, it's totally possible to catch evolved Pokémon that aren't at the necessary level (for example, the level 9 Pidgeotto in Viridian Forest exclusive to Yellow, or the level 4 Metapod and Kakuna in the same place). So what more likely happened here was that Blue caught an under-leveled Raticate (somehow), and after the battle, he realized how weak it was, and either put it in his PC or released it. Because, as we've established, Blue isn't exactly the brightest bulb.

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What were we doing again? Oh yeah. Pokémon Tower.

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A rope in a graveyard has some rather disturbing implications that I really don't want to think about.

I caught a Gastly on the way to the top. During a battle with one of the Shaman... I mean, channelers, Alakazam learn Psybeam, replacing Disable. I also caught a Cubone. Hey, all of the encounters here are just non-descript ghosts if you come here without the Silph Scope. So does that mean I caught the spirit of a Cubone? Or are there just Cubone everywhere here that somehow blend in with the other ghosts? Yamask doesn't exist yet, so it's not like that first option is completely out of the question...

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They censored this to "Give me your all" in the Let's Go! games. That sure sucks, doesn't it?

I caught a Haunter sometime afterwards, which I'll evolve later with a Link Cable.

After defeating the Marowak (thus letting her ascend to the afterlife, finally giving her a happy ending), we reach the top of Pokémon Tower to fight a few grunts before rescuing Mr. Fuji. He kindly takes us back to the Pokémon House before giving us the Poké Flute.

Next time, we head South and, to quote the anime, wake up Snorlax.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Fri Mar 22, 2024 1:42 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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On Route 12, there's some items out of reach. Let's come back for those once we get Surf.

At the middle of the Route, we'll use the Poké Flute to wake up Snorlax, and catch it.

By the way, I forgot to mention this earlier, but with the Poké Flute, we don't need to buy any more Awakenings. We can use it on our turn to wake up any Pokémon that has fallen asleep. It also wakes up the opponent's Pokémon too, so be careful. I'm sure there's at least one person who didn't think to try this, so I thought it was worth mentioning.

In the house South of where we caught Snorlax is the Fishing Guru's brother, who gives us the Super Rod.

On Route 14, I caught an Exeggcute. ...Wait, that doesn't sound normal.

Saffron is under siege by Team Rocket at the moment, so we'll head to Fuchsia City instead.

In one of the houses is another one of the Fishing Guru's brothers, who gives us the Good Rod.

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Erik: Where's Sara? I said I'd meet her here.
Hmm... So far these named NPCs have done something that contributed to the plot (in more ways than one, if the creator's house in Celedon is anything to go by). Maybe this will have some payoff later.

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We can buy Ultra Balls now! Excellent! Let's buy a few. Unfortunately, this will probably be the point where a certain annoyance comes into play. We have a limited number of items we can carry. What I'm going to do to save space is put all of our TMs and HMs into the PC (I don't like using TMs in Pokémon games prior to Gen V anyway).

Now let's tackle the Safari Zone. Remember, our GameShark can give us infinite Safari Balls, and reset the step counter, so we can spend as much time as we like here. Just make sure to open up the GameShark every so often. Doesn't make catching Pokémon here any less annoying, unfortunately (so glad ORAS fixed this).

In the Rest House is that payoff I mentioned earlier.

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Sara: Where did my boy friend, Erik, go?
Well, that was disappointing. If talking to Erik after this does something, I'll let you know.

In the Safari Zone, I caught a Ryhorn, a Nidorino (there was an NPC earlier who wanted one), a Parasect, a female Nidoran (also something an NPC from earlier wanted), and a Venonat,

I found the Gold Teeth, and found the Secret House containing the Surf HM. I taught it to Blastoise, replacing Bubble. We don't have the right Gym Badge just yet, so we can't make use of it right now.

I gave the Gold Teeth to the Safari Zone Warden, and obtained the Strength HM. I taught it to Sandslash, replacing Scratch.

I put Sandlash in the PC temporarily, got the Haunter I caught from Lavender Town out, and evolved it into Gengar using a Link Cable.

Now, let's go to the gym, and fight Koga.

Since I'm using the Super Game Boy, there's a little exploit here. You can see the path of the invisible walls. This works on any system that displays the game in color.

During the battle with the Jugglers (I realized they're called that because they constantly keep switching out Pokémon), Pikachu learned his iconic Thunderbolt attack, replacing Thundershock. Alakzam also learned Recover, replacing Kinesis.

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Good night, everybody!

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Now we can use Surf outside of battles.

Before we head any further, let's head back to Vermillion City. There's something there we need to take care of.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Tue Mar 19, 2024 1:13 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Using Surf on the right side of the S.S. Anne's harbor reveals this truck. This is why we threw a battle on it earlier. But wait. There's something sitting in the back of it. What could that be?

SAVE RIGHT NOW!!!

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Here we are, arguably the most famous rumor in all of Pokémon. In vanilla, the truck is there, but it does nothing. Using a map editor reveals that there's actually more to the harbor just right of it, implying there was going to be more to this place, but we can only speculate on what could have been there. The truck spawned countless rumors as to what it does. The most famous being that a Mew is under it, requiring Strength to push it. This rumor is so famous, it's actually been referenced in official Pokémon games. In FRLG, you can find a Lava Cookie hidden near it (which you otherwise can't get until the postgame), and in the Let's Go! games, there's a Revive near it that respawns daily.

Since Mew is out in the open, we don't need Strength, unfortunately, but regardless, let's catch it.

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In case you're wondering, I checked, and Strength sadly doesn't do anything with the truck. That's a shame.

Well then, that probably fulfilled a lot of people's childhood fantasies. Mew will be replacing Alakazam on my team from here on out. I love using legendries on my teams. Yes, they're cheap, but that's what makes them so much fun!

Next time, we'll head to Saffron City.

Edit: Hehe... So, funny story. As it turns out, we didn't need to force the S.S. Anne to stay in order to get here. According to one of the text files, the ferryman despawns after obtaining the Strength HM anyway (because you'd probably think to come back here after that if you knew about the rumor beforehand). Regardless, the Bill's Garden sidequest from earlier does prove my point that the developer did account for people doing this exploit, even if there's very little reason to do so now.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Wed Mar 20, 2024 2:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Before we head to Saffron, I almost forgot about this guy in Celedon:
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*sigh*

Alright, let's go to Saffron...

At Mr. Psychic's house, I grabbed the Psychic TM. Afterwards, he had this to say.
Also...
Hmmm.....
I can sense a shift in the world around us.
Perhaps the gods of Pokémon are appearing at last.


Went to the Fighting Dojo, and fought the trainees there. Ivysaur learned Razor Leaf, replacing Tackle. For my efforts, I got to pick between Hitmonlee and Hitmonchan. I picked the latter, but assume there will be an opportunity to obtain the other one later.

Now, let's enter the Silph Co. Office Building, and get rid of all these Grunts. They're impeding our progress, after all! During my fights, Ivysaur fully evolved into Venusaur. Sandslash also tried to learn Poison Sting, but we'll miss out (we have Venasaur for that). Charmeleon also learned Slash, replacing Scratch.

I found the Card Key, which makes this place a lot less confusing to navigate.

While going through the building for anything I might have missed, Charmeleon fully evolved into Charizard.

And before we fight Giovanni again, who should show up but Blue?

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If I don't sweat, wouldn't that imply that you wouldn't be able to smell me anyway?

The guy nearby gave me a Lapras, like usual.

For defeating Giovanni, the president of Silph Co. gives us a Master Ball. We all know what we're supposed to use this on. Anyway, now that Team Rocket is gone, we can finally fully explore the city!

To the left of the gym is the Copycat Girl's house. If we talk to her Doduo, it'll say this:

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MIRROR MIRROR ON THE WALL, WHO IS THE FAIREST ONE OF ALL?
Is that supposed to be a clue or something? Also, that's wrong. The quote is "Magic mirror on the wall" (if you're referring to the Disney adaptation, anyway).

Now, it's off to the gym to fight Sabrina, the teenage witch. And yes, I did just now realize that was probably meant to be the reference.

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Six down, two to go! Join me next time when I travel to Cinnabar Island.

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Okay, so I lied. We won't be heading to Cinnabar just yet, but instead, we're going to head back to Mt. Moon real quick.

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We're going to go up this ladder right here.

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This will reveal a room with two Strength boulders in it. Push one out of the way, and continue downwards.

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Here's the fossil we didn't pick! Very nice. Okay, back to the main story.

Next, we'll head to Route 16, and finally pick up the Fly HM from the secret retreat. I taught it to Charizard, replacing Leer. This is also a quality of life improvement. In vanilla, Charizard couldn't learn Fly. Yep, you read that right. A human-sized winged dragon couldn't fly. It was fixed in Yellow, though.

There's another Snorlax in the way, which we'll wake up with the Poké Flute and catch as well. This is a scripted encounter, after all. That'll let us head to Cycling Road.

Here's our next quality of life improvement. While on the bike, you can hold B to access the Mach Bike mode from Gen VI.

With our newly acquired Fly HM, let's fly all the way back to Pallet Town, and finally head south towards Cinnabar.

While surfing, I caught a Tentacool,

In the Pokémon Lab is a man who will trade an Electrode for a Raichu. I'll catch another Pikachu. and evolve it later. There's also a woman who will trade a Tangela for a Venonat. Venonat I do have, so one quick trip to a PC later, I traded. There's also someone who will trade a Ponyta for a Seel. Something else to remember for later.

It's here that we'll revive both the Dome and Helix fossils into Kabuto and Omanyte respectfully.

Oh, and because I forgot about it, I'll fly to Pewter City real quick to get the Old Amber from the building to the right of the Museum. That will be revived into an Aerodactyl.

Cinnabar Gym is currently locked, so we'll go into the Pokémon Mansion, and explore around.

Inside the mansion, I caught a Koffing, a Ponyta, a Muk, a Weezing, a Growlithe, a Grimer.

Of note is a book that reveals that Mew was discovered on July 10th. Another one reveals that it was discovered in a jungle in Guyana. This was in vanilla, but I just wanted to point this out. Because it was later retconned to just "the jungle".

After, like, 20 minutes of getting lost, I found the Secret Key, which will give us access to the Cinnabar Gym. Now we can face Blaine.

During my battles with the gym Trainers, Blastoise learned Skull Bash, replacing Bite.

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Only one more to go! Join me next time when we face our final gym battle all the way back in Viridian City

Oh, and um... To bring some closure to something I said very early on in this LP, yeah the Missingno. glitch has been fixed in this hack, sadly. "Changes.txt" has a section called "Glitches/Oversights fixed", and one of the bullet points is "Missingno. glitch". Just to be sure, I did try the glitch out anyway just to see if it did something, because Missingno. was the basis for a lot of rumors way back when (especially something we'll be coming across very soon), but alas, nothing happened. It especially sucks because I had seven whole paragraphs typed up on my phone thoroughly going over the glitch and how it works. Guess I won't be using that anymore. ¯⁠\⁠_⁠(⁠ツ⁠)⁠_⁠/⁠¯

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Nothing else to do except fly back to Viridian to face the gym leader.

Surprise! The Viridian City gym leader was Giovanni this whole time! A really good plot twist that I bet many weren't expecting.

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And with that, we grab our final gym badge. Giovanni also disbands Team Rocket after seeing us battle, and instead decides to move to the field of Pokémon research. A decision he totally won't go back on in about 15 years (spoiler alert).

See you all next time when we head towards Victory Road, fight our rival, and take on the Elite Four.

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A few steps into Route 22, and we get challenged once more by Blue. Pikachu tried to learn Agility, but we'll miss out, since Pikachu is already fast as-is. After that, we get treated to one more...
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...before we head off for Victory Road.

Two things of interest at Victory Road. First off, this is a good time to do some last minute EXP grinding before facing the Elite Four. There's plenty of Trainer battles here, and lots of encounters with good experience yields, so take advantage of those. Secondly, this is where you can catch the other Fighting-Type you didn't pick at the Dojo in Saffron. Hitmonlee is on the second floor, and Hitmonchan is on the third floor. They're rare encounters, though, so you'll have to be patient. Fun fact: This is a nod to the Let's Go! games, where they could also be found here.

On Victory Road, I caught a Golbat, an Onix, a Machop, a Machoke, a Graveler, and a Marowak. I spent nearly an hour trying to look for Hitmonlee before giving up. I'll look some more later. If you manage to find one of them here, feel free to brag about it.

While grinding, Pikachu learned Thunder, replacing Thunderbolt. Yes, I said Thunderbolt is iconic, but Thunder is the better move. Same attack, just with higher power.

Oh, and ignore that sprite of a Farfetch'd on the second floor. Don't worry, we'll come back to it later.

We're about to face the Elite Four. Be sure to stock up on Full Restores and Revives; you're gonna need them.

During the fight with Bruno, Blastoise learned Hydro Pump, replacing Water Gun.

Here we are, the final boss of the main story. The last battle with Blue. Hope you've come prepared.

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Well that was fun, wasn't it? But we're not done yet! Join me next time for the postgame. Yep, this ROM hack has a postgame. And a pretty hefty one too. See you all then!
Last edited by pgj1997 on Sun Apr 21, 2024 1:36 am, edited 3 times in total.

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pgj1997 wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2024 7:05 pm
Oh, and ignore that sprite of a Farfetch'd on the second floor. Don't worry, we'll come back to it later.
What sprite?

Your last bunch of updates were mostly text with only two or three pictures per post.

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I'm back! Sorry it took so long! Let's start on the postgame! Our first stop is Celedon City.

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First off, after beating the Elite Four, a second grand prize is added to the Celedon Game Corner: Master Balls. Very useful. This is similar to other games, where you can get Master Balls through other luck-based means (such as the Lottery Corners).

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Next off, we'll talk to this lady at the Game Corner counter.

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Wow!
Well then, since you were nice enough to talk to me, I'll give you this Pokémon I found stranded behind the Museum in Pewter City.
The Pokémon is so strong I can't control him. But since you have all the Badges, you can have it!
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Here's our first new Pokémon exclusive to this ROM hack: Pikablu. This is a pretty famous rumor. Back when Gen II was first announced in Japan, a screenshot of Marill circulated around the internet in the West. Somehow, this started a rumor about a Water-type evolution of Pikachu named "Pikablu", with many different methods on how to find it.

This also brings us to something I've been alluding to throughout this LP. The PokéGods. This is a whole rabbit hole in itself. Basically, they're extremely powerful Pokémon with Dex numbers that exceed 150, and are very rare. Think Mythical Pokémon before that was turned into a thing. And yes, Mew was often lumped into this rumor because its Dex number is 151.

The main reason this PokéGod rumor spread the way it did was due to a website called "The Pokémon Factory", which made convincing-looking sprite art of fake Pokémon with accompanying PokéDex entries. These were spread without context, kickstarting the rumor.

Remember that text file with a name I didn't want to spoil? Well, that's because the file is named "Pokégods + Events". This contains information on the game's new inclusions, and also lists the stats and movepools for the new Pokémon. I'll be going over these as they come up. For now, here's Pikablu's stats.

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Water-Type

HP: 70
Attack: 20
Defense: 50
Speed: 40
Special: 70

Learnset:
1 - Tackle
3 - Defense Curl
6 - Tail Whip
10 - Water Gun
15 - Waterfall
21 - Bubblebeam
28 - Double Edge
36 - Hydro Pump

TMs/HMs
Mega Punch
Mega Kick
Toxic
Body Slam
Take Down
Double-Edge
Bubble Beam
Water Gun
Ice Beam
Blizzard
Hyper Beam
Pay Day
Submission
Counter
Seismic Toss
Mimic
Double Team
Reflect
Bide
Metronome
Swift
Skull Bash
Rest
Substitute
Surf


Next up, it's time to travel across Kanto to fight and capture the legendary birds. See you guys soon!

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Time to capture the legendary birds! Our first stop is the Seafoam Islands to catch Articuno.

At the Seafoam Islands, I caught a Slowpoke, a Seel, and a Horsea.

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As with any Legendary encounter, be sure to save before initiating the battle. You only get one chance to capture them.

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Also, the game doesn't tell you this, but in Gen I, your Poké Balls will often miss when you throw them at the legendary birds. Not sure why that is, but I wanted to warn everyone. You can increase your chance of not missing by inflicting them with a status. I recommend Paralysis, since it's the only status that doesn't heal itself over time, and is non-damaging.

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Next, we'll head to the Power Plant to catch Zapdos.

I caught a Magnemite, several Voltorb and Electrode (remember, they're scripted encounters), and another Pikachu (for the Raichu the man at Cinnabar wanted to trade)

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Two down, one to go! Finally, it's back to Victory Road to catch Moltres (I alluded to this earlier).

I caught a Venomoth on my way to Moltres. Still haven't found that pesky Hitmonlee, though.

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And that's all of them! Get your Master Ball ready, because next time, we'll head to Cerulean Cave!
Last edited by pgj1997 on Wed Mar 27, 2024 3:12 am, edited 2 times in total.

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In Cerulean Cave, I caught a Rhydon, a Dodrio, a Wigglytuff, a Magneton, a Ditto, a Hypno, a Lickitung, and an Arbok.

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Press A on this tile right here.

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Here's its item description:
A strange bottle with a note.
Interesting. We probably have to do something with this later.

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We all know what comes next. Use your Master Ball, and catch Mewtwo. You can catch it with any Poké Ball, but you're meant to use the Master Ball on it. Remember, you can get more at the Game Corner.

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Before we do anything else, let's stop by Pallet Town, and see if Professor Oak knows anything about the bottle we found.

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A bottle?
Hmm. It has a note inside.
Let's read it.
The Unknown Dungeon has many secrets but you haven't found them all until you see a dog.
Strange.
What could it mean?
"The Unknown Dungeon" is what Cerulean Cave was called in materials such as the manual and strategy guides prior to FRLG. Anyway, sounds like we missed something. Let's go back.

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On the spot where Mewtwo was, there's now a Strength boulder. Nothing else to do but push it!

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Looks like there's more dungeon here! The right path is a dead end, so go left, and follow the path until you reach...

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SAVE RIGHT NOW!!!

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Here's our next PokéGod, Bruno. We'll definitely talk about him right now. Unfortunately, he doesn't have any zipper-based moves, but he's still very interesting. Much like Pikablu, pictures of Snubull circulated around the internet. Fans nicknamed him "Bruno", which I guess is based on its Japanese name, "Bulu", since it's somewhat phonetically similar.

The rumor on how to catch it is exactly what we just did to the letter. The only difference being that all the platforms we saw on this floor was said to have different PokéGods standing on them. That's not the case here. They're all seemingly just for show, but I wouldn't be surprised if at least one of them housed a secret item.

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Normal-Type

HP: 60
Attack: 80
Defense: 50
Speed: 30
Special: 40

Learnset:
1 - Tackle
1 - Tail Whip
8 - Sing
13 - Bite
19 - Lick
26 - Roar
34 - Rage
43 - Take Down

TMs/HMs
Mega Punch
Mega Kick
Toxic
Body Slam
Take Down
Double Edge
Hyper Beam
Pay Day
Submission
Counter
Seismic Toss
Rage
Mimic
Double Team
Reflect
Bide
Metronome
Swift
Skull Bash
Rest
Rock Slide
Substitute
Strength

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Next time, we'll be heading to the last stop on our journey. Something that was hinted at way back at the start of this LP. I'll see you all then!

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Ok, so I lied again. There's one more thing we gotta do first. We'll head back to Mt. Moon (for the last time, I promise), and head to the room where we got the other fossil.

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Press A right here.

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Here's its item description:
It's making sounds inside.
It went in our inventory, not our party, which probably means it's not gonna hatch by us walking around. Instead, what we want to do is talk to this guy near the exit:
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Wait!
Is that one of the rare Pokémon eggs?
Is... is it shaking?
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We just hatched our next PokéGod. If you couldn't tell by the name, this is a Togepi. No, I don't know why it's misspelled here (because I'm fairly certain Togepi's name was spelled out at least a few times in marketing material for the anime).

Togepi was one of the few Gen II Pokémon that debuted in the anime before appearing the games themselves. One even appeared in "Hey You, Pikachu!", which is a Gen I spin-off. Because of this, some believed Togepi was a PokéGod, and could be caught. Turns out they had to wait a few years for that.

Speaking of the anime, this is a nod to it. In the episode "Attack of the Prehistoric Pokémon", Togepi's egg was found by Ash in a canyon filled with Pokémon fossils, similar to how Mt. Moon is where we got the Dome and Helix Fossils.

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Normal-Type

HP: 35
Attack: 20
Defense: 65
Speed: 70
Special: 20

Learnset:
1 - Grow
1 - Doubleslap
7 - Metronome
18 - Headbutt
25 - Mimic
31 - Body Slam
38 - Double Edge

TMs/HMs:
Mega Punch
Mega Kick
Toxic
Body Slam
Take Down
Double Edge
Hyper Beam
Pay Day
Solar Beam
Psychic
Teleport
Mimic
Double Team
Reflect
Bide
Metronome
Swift
Skull Bash
Softboiled
Rest
Thunder Wave
Psywave
Substitute
Flash


Okay, now back to what we were doing. Remember that the house to the left of the Museum in Pewter City? The guard said they need a strong trainer like someone from the Elite Four. Well, we beat the Elite Four, so maybe now he'll let us in?

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Ah, looks like he's gone now! Let's enter!

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And here we are at Brick Town. This is a rumor that goes by many names, but the name chosen for this ROM hack is "Brick Town". The rumor goes that this is a hidden town that you had to go out of your way to look for. What exactly was there depended on who you asked, but the one thing that was persistent is that you could catch and encounter PokéGods here. The only way to know what's in store for us is to walk around and explore!

To my chagrin, the background music for this town is the Lavender Town theme. Yay... Personally, I would have picked the unused trading theme, more specifically, the more completed version that was uncovered in the 2020 gigaleak. Alternatively, if we're going to use tracks from the gigaleak, perhaps the scrapped Route music. Or even better, Giovanni's unused theme from Yellow. I love it when ROM hacks incorporate unused elements back into games, so those would have been cool. Anyway, let's look around.

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Ominous... This happens every time we try to enter a house.

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We're making tomorrow's dreams, today!
Ah! Another rumor! "Pokémon Factory" was another name for Brick Town. In a very creative decision, the Pokémon Factory is the "main attraction" of Brick Town. Its Safari Zone, Game Corner, or Museum, if you will.

Nothing else to do but go inside.

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Oh, a visitor!
We haven't seem anyone new to town in quite a while.
Not since that bizarre young man with glasses.
Anyway, welcome!
This is the Pokémon Factory.
We're the company behind mass-producing Element stones.
I'm the president here, as well as the mayor of Brick Town.
The town, you may have noticed, is in dire straits.
Or it would be, but almost all the citizens are trapped in their homes.
They seem to be in a daze as well.
All this began when the stranger advised me to block off Outcast Cave.
I was looking for a reason to close that place up.
Recently, strong Pokémon have begun to appear there, and I can't risk my citizens.
Wait you want to check it out?
Y-you're the new League Champion, you say.
Oh, glorious day!
Outcast cave is west of here.
I'll contact the officer stationed there right away!
Also, Champion,
Outcast Cave is very dangerous.
If you have them, the 5 HMs maybe useful.
Okay, so a lot to unpack here. First off, it's revealed that this is where Evolution Stones come from. Of course, this isn't completely right, as Diamond & Pearl reveals there's a bunch of them underground that people can freely mine for. But we can handwave this by saying that they make synthetic copies, which explains why they're so plentiful and cheap in Kanto. Secondly, a "bizarre young man with glasses". Hmm... Remember Tom? That guy we found on top of Celedon Mansion? Call it a hunch, but I have a feeling this was his doing. His sprite did have glasses, after all.

Okay, this post has gotten as long as it is, so I'm going to split this up, and make another post documenting everything in Outcast Cave. See you soon!
Last edited by pgj1997 on Sun Apr 21, 2024 1:54 am, edited 7 times in total.

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Outcast Cave is located just north of the entrance we came from. Let's go inside. Make sure you have all the HMs available, because, like the mayor said, we're gonna need all of them.

It's dark, so use Flash when you enter.

Be warned, all of these encounters are at level 70 or higher. What? You expected a postgame bonus dungeon to be easy? Hope you came prepared.

My first encounter was a Nidoqueen. I caught it.

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One of the encounters here is our next PokéGod: Kireihana. It's another Pikablu situation. But with Bellossom instead. "Kireihana" is Bellossom's Japanese name, by the way.

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Grass-Type

HP: 75
Attack: 80
Defense: 85
Speed: 50
Special: 100

Learnset:
1 - Absorb
1 - Stun Spore
1 - Poisonpowder
1- Petal Dane
55 - SolarBeam

TMs/HMs:
Mega Punch
Mega Kick
Toxic
Hyper Beam
Rage
Mega Drain
Solar Beam
Mimic
Double Team
Reflect
Bide
Metronome
Swift
Rest
Substitute
Cut

Found a Tentacruel while Surfing. Caught it.

Found a Slowbro too, and caught it.

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Here's our next PokéGod: Denryu. Yet again, this is another case of a Gen II Pokémon circulating around the internet, and people assuming it's a secret Pokémon. This time, an Ampharos. "Denryu" is also the Japanese name on Ampharos.

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Electric-Type

HP: 90,
Attack: 75
Defense: 85
Speed: 55
Special: 115

Learnset:
1 - Tackle
1 - Growl
1 - Thundershock
1 - Thunder Wave
30 - ThunderPunch
42 - Light Screen
57 - Thunder

TMs/HMs
Mega Punch
Mega Kick
Toxic
Body Slam
Take Down
Double Edge
Hyper Beam
Submission
Counter
Seismic Toss
Rage
Dragon Rage
Thunderbolt
Thunder
Mimic
Double Team
Reflect
Bide
Swift
Skull Bash
Rest
Thunder Wave
Substitute
Flash

I found an Arcanine, and caught it.

I thought I got softlocked during one of the Strength puzzles, so I used an Escape Rope to get out, and this happened:
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Fortunately, you can get out by flying, but still.

Found a Dewgong, and caught it. Afterwards, I found a Golduck. Caught that too.

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Here's our next PokéGod: Tyranticus. Don't get too excited, though, this is the last PokéGod you can obtain through random encounters. There's still more in general, though. This is a creation by "The Pokémon Factory" website. The original image is here: https://pokefactory.pokemology.com/PFclassic/155.gif

For some reason, it uses the sprite of a Tyranitar here.

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Rock/Dragon-Type

HP: 100
Attack: 164
Defense: 150
Speed: 95
Special: 71

Learnset:
1 - Bite
1 - Leer
1 - Screech
22 - Rock Slide
29 - Thrash
38 - Earthquake
47 - Hyper Beam

TMs/HMs:
Mega Punch
Swords Dance
Mega Kick
Toxic
Horn Drill
Body Slam
Take Down
Double Edge
Hyper Beam
Submission
Counter
Seismic Tpss
Rage
Dragon Rage
Earthquake
Fissure
Dig
Mimic
Double Team
Bide
Metronome
SelfDestruct
Swift
Skull Bash
Rest
Explosion
Rock Slide
Substitute
Cut
Surf
Strength

Found a Starmie, and caught it. Then I found a Nidoking, and caught that too.

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Eventually, we come across this. I wonder what this could be?

SAVE RIGHT NOW!!!

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Here's our next PokéGod. Hifishi. This is based on Bukuu, an early design for Qwilfish. I believe this sprite originates from the Gold & Silver Spaceworld prototype that leaked in 2020 as part of the gigaleak. Could be wrong, though. Anyway, as you probably guessed, it's another Pikablu situation.

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Water/Poison-Type

HP: 65
Attack: 95
Defense: 75
Speed: 85
Special: 55

Learnset:
1 - Tackle
1 - Poison Sting
10 - Harden
10 - Minimize
19 - Water Gun
28 - Pin Missile
37 - Take Down
46 - Hydro Pump

TMs/HMs:
Toxic
Horn Drill
Bubblebeam
Water Gun
Ice Beam
Blizzard
Hyper Beam
Rage
Mimic
Double Ream
Reflect
Bide
Swift
Rest
Subsititute
Surf

Don't think we're done yet! There's plenty more dungeon to get through!

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SAVE RIGHT NOW!!!

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This is a reference to the anime. More specifically, "The Ghost of Maiden's Peak". In the episode, there's a scene where a Gastly creates apparitions of a Venasaur and a Blastoise in order to scare Ash's Bulbasaur and Squirtle. Then, "just for fun", the Gastly decides to fuse the two together, creating "Venustoise" in the process. Obviously, this was a joke, but it nonetheless kickstarted a rumor about being able to somehow fuse a Blastoise and a Venusaur together, and get a Venustoise. Remember, this was back when it wasn't universally understood that the anime and the games are completely separate continuities.

Also, he's the same situation as the legendary birds, where Poké Balls will often miss.

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Grass/Water-Type

HP: 80
Attack: 83
Defense: 100
Speed: 80
Special: 105

Learnset:
1 - Leech Seed
1 - Vine Whip
1 - Bubble
1 - Water Gun

TMs/HMs
Mega Punch
Swords Dance
Mega Kick
Toxic
Body Slam
Take Down
Double Edge
Bubblebeam
Water Gun
Ice Beam
Blizzard
Submission
Counter
Seismic Toss
Rage
Mega Drain
Solar Beam
Earthquake
Fissue
Mimic
Double Team
Bide
Skull Bash
Rest
Substitute
Cut
Surf
Strength

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Oh boy...

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You know the drill. SAVE RIGHT NOW!!!

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Here's another famous PokéGod, and another creation from The Pokémon Factory. Here's the original image: https://pokefactory.pokemology.com/PFclassic/158.gif

Curiously, here, it uses the sprite of a Spiritomb, a Gen IV Pokémon. Not sure why that is. It looks nice, don't get me wrong, it's just jarring is all.

Unfortunately, "Pokégods + Events" doesn't list its stats for some reason, so I can't give a complete breakdown of it. If anyone tech-savvy knows how to find this information out, let me know; I'll edit this, and give you credit. I can still show you its stats screen, though.
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What is interesting is its PokéDex entry:

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Looks like a cipher. But there's probably a key for this, so let's put it off until later.

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The staircase that Doomsday was blocking leads to a series of ladders that will bring us outside the cave with a path containing many Cut trees.

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And at the end, there's another cave.

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Oh boy, here we go again. SAVE RIGHT NOW!!!

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Okay, I'm not counting this rumor as another Pikablu situation, because there's a more reasonable explanation for this one. In the first episode of the anime, "Pokémon: I Choose You!", it ends with Ash seeing a Ho-Oh fly over a rainbow after a thunderstorm. His PokéDex mysteriously couldn't identify it, leaving the viewers to speculate on what it could be. Of course, as we all know now, this scene was a teaser for Gold & Silver, which had just started development when the anime was in production. Fun fact: The Ho-Oh Ash saw was actually Shiny. Ho-Oh's color scheme probably wasn't finalized just yet, which is why it was depicted with a gold body instead of a red body. The developers must have known that players would notice this, so they made this gold coloration Ho-Oh's Shiny form. Cool, right? Makes the scene all the more awesome. It also sparkles too, just like what Shinies do when they reveal themselves. That part probably wasn't intentional, but it's fun to think about.

Since Houou is a "legendary bird" (in another sense, anyway), your Poké Balls will often miss, so be sure to inflict a status on it.

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Fire/Flying-Type

HP: 106
Attack: 130
Defense: 90
Speed: 154
Special: 105

Learnset:
1 - Flamethrower
11 - Gust
22 - Recover
33 - Fire Blast
44 - Swift
55 - Whirlwind
66 - Psychic

TMs/HMs:
Razor WInd
Swords Dance
Whirlwind
Toxic
Body Slam
Take Down
Double Edge
Hyper Beam
Rage
Teleport
Mimic
Double Team
Reflect
Fire Blast
Swift
Skull Bash
Sky Attack
Rest
Tri-Attack
Substitute
Fly
Flash

Phew! That was a whole lot, wasn't it? I think now is a good stopping point. Join me next time for the penultimate part of this let's play when I explore more of Brick Town, and see what happened after we cleared out Outcast Cave.
Last edited by pgj1997 on Sun Apr 21, 2024 3:31 am, edited 8 times in total.

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Okay, so in this part, we're going to thoroughly explore Brick Town, and talk to all the NPCs. They probably all have something interesting to say to us. We won't know unless we try.

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We'll be saving the Town Hall here for last. Trust me, I have a reason for this. Oh boy, do I ever.

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Everyone in town works at the Pokémon Factory.
It sends exports all over the country.
Gee, that doesn't sound monopolistic and dictatorial, now does it? Anyway, more world building. They ship their Evolution Stones to Johto, Sinnoh, and Hoenn as well (because remember, they're all on the same landmass, canonically). No wonder you can easily buy them in most games.

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Brick Town isn't very touristy.
But I like how quiet it is.
So, despite the big obvious factory that everyone's forced to work at, seems like Brick Town is otherwise a nice place to live.

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Remember that this place was on lockdown for the majority of the game, so it makes sense that not that many people come by. Perhaps that'll change since we fixed that.

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Crafting stones ain't easy, but it's honest work.
Yep, I was right. The Evolution Stones the factory makes are synthetic copies, not the natural ones like the ones in Sinnoh.

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I found a strange stone in the Seafoam Islands.
When certain, high level Pokémon are exposed to it, they evolve beyond what was believed possible.
Even Prof. Oak was taken aback.
Remember this for later.

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Okay, dude.

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My buddy's got this weird Pokémon.
How he got it makes no sense.
Supposedly...
He had to have the six weakest Bug Pokémon in his party, then he has to go to the Safari Zone, and catch 4 more Bug Pokémon in a certain order.
Finally, he had to beat the Elite Four with six Pokémon.
Thing is, my buddy's never left town.
Yeah, that definitely sounds like a rumor someone would make up back then...

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Tricket is out next PokéGod. It's a Pokémon based on a cricket... and that's about it. The most popular rumored method of obtaining it was to go through Victory Road with a team consisting of Caterpie, Metapod, Butterfree, Weedle, Kakuna, and Beedrill, then beating the Elite Four. And joke's on you, it's actually impossible, since none of these Pokémon can learn Strength or Surf, which are required to pass through Victory Road.

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Bug-Type

(Yeah, ignore the name. Guzma nicknamed it that)

HP: 77
Attack: 85
Defense: 51
Speed: 65
Special: 55

Learnset:
1 - Growl
1 - Bide
14 - Leech Life
18 - Sing
22 - Focus Energy
30 - Slash
34 - Screech

TM/HMs: Swords Dance, Toxic, Horn Drill, Body Slam, Take Down, Double-Edge, Hyper Beam, Submission, Counter, Seismic Toss, Rage, Dig, Mimic, Double Team, Reflect, Bide, Metronome, Swift, Skull Bash, Rest, Substitute, Cut

Okay, that's everyone with dialogue that's of interest. Now, let's head to the Town Hall. I'll save the mayor for last.

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Had to look that up. That means "Chief Administrative Officer".

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The Mayor is dedicated to the citizens of Brick Town.
I heard from the officer stationed at Outcast Cave, that he tried to go in alone.
How Brave.
Well, it's a good thing we came along.

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No big deal.

And lastly, we have the mayor:
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Everyone is free! I can't possibly thank you enough!
As a token of my esteem, please take this Mist Stone! The pride of Brick Town!
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Hoo boy, the Mist Stone. This thing opens up a whole new can of worms, and it's going to take me a while to explain everything that this does. So, here we go.

Alright, first off, the rumor goes that this item can force any Pokémon to evolve, even if that Pokémon is seemingly "fully evolved" (don't ask for specifics; the guy who made this up clearly didn't think that far ahead). Obviously, it doesn't do that here. But it does work on a good number of Pokémon, all of which are based on popular rumors themselves. Here's all of them, and thier stats.

Remember that these are evolutions, so these are mostly stat changes. Only new moves exclusive to these evolutions are noted.

Firstly, we have the starters. These are based on a rumor that the starters have a secret fourth evolution, usually requiring the Mist Stone. Venusaur evolves into Sapusaur, Charizard evolves into Charcolt, and Blastoise evolves into Rainer. These names are also part of the rumor, by the way. It's thought that all of them getting Mega Evolutions in Gen VI is a nod to this rumor, which is very possible, given the other rumors they've referenced. Fittingly, thier sprites are of those Mega Evolutions. Nice incorporation of something from the canon games. It totally makes sense too.

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Grass/Ground Type

HP: 80
Attack: 100
Defense: 123
Speed: 80
Special: 120

Learnset:
Move Tutor - Amnesia
32 - Petal Dance

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Fire/Dragon-Type

HP: 78
Attack: 130
Defense: 111
Speed: 100
Special: 130

Learnset:
Move Tutor - Smokescreen
Move Tutor - Fury Swipes
36 - Wing Attack
46 - Dragon Rage

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Water/Fighting-Type

HP:79
Attack: 103
Defense: 120
Speed: 78
Special: 135

Learnset:
Move Tutor - Bubblebeam
36 - Waterfall
42 - Headbutt

Next, we have Beedrill, who evolves into Beepin. Wasn't able to find much information on this one, sadly. Of note, Beedrill also gained a Mega Evolution in Gen VI, which may or may not also be based on this rumor.

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Bug/Poison'-Type

HP: 65
Attack: 150
Defense: 40
Speed: 145
Special: 80

Learnset:
Move Tutor - Peck
16 - Focus Energy

Next is Raticate, who evolves into Raticlaw. This is one of the fake Pokémon from The Pokémon Factory. The original image is here: https://pokefactory.pokemology.com/PFclassic/386.gif
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Normal/Fighting-Type

HP: 75
Attack: 91
Defense: 70
Speed: 102
Special: 80

Learnset:
Move Tutor - Swords Dance
Move Tutor - Counter
Move Tutor - Fury Swipes
27 - Focus Energy

Next, there's Dimonix, an Ice-Type Onix evolution. This rumor is similar to Pikablu, but didn't catch on as much. Replace Marill with Steelix, and that's basically all it amounted to. Of note, there was an Onix made of crystals that appeared in the anime, but that's probably a coincidence. The sprite seems to be based on that, though.

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Ice-Type

HP: 75
Attack: 85
Defense: 200
Speed: 30
Special: 65

Learnset:
Move Tutor - Ice Beam
Move Tutor - Blizzard

Gengar evolves into the creatively-named "Spooky". Also couldn't find much info on this, unfortunately. Gengar got a Mega Evolution in Gen VI. That I do know.

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Ghost-Type

HP: 60
Attack: 65
Defense: 80
Speed: 130
Special: 170

Next, we have two new Eeveelutions. First, with a Mist Stone, Eevee will evolve into Solareon. Then there's its counterpart, Lunareon, which Eevee evolves into with a Moon Stone at level 25 or higher. If these Pokémon sound like Umbreon and Espeon, you're exactly right. Another Pikablu situation.

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Ghost-Type

HP: 95
Attack: 65
Defense: 110
Speed: 65
Special: 130

Learn Set:
Move Tutor - Night Shade
Move Tutor - Quick Attack
30 - Confuse Ray
36 - Bite
42 - Screech

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Psychic-Type

HP: 65
Attack: 65
Defense: 60
Speed: 110
Special: 130

Learnset:
Move Tutor - Confusion
30 - Swift
36 - Psybeam
42 - Psychic

Lastly, we have Mewtwo, who evolves into Mewthree, our final PokéGod. This one's actually got a pretty interesting history. During the hype of "Mewtwo Strikes Back", images of Armored Mewtwo leaked online. Fans mistook this as a new evolution of Mewtwo, or perhaps a new legendary, and named it "Mewthree". Coincidentally, during the first scene, when the scientists are celebrating over Mewtwo's creation, you can hear one of them say "Now we can start on Mewthree". Whether this was in the Japanese dub, or was a joke thrown in by a writer at 4Licensing, I couldn't tell you. The rumor had a brief resurgence when a teaser was released showing Mega Mewtwo Y (before Mega Evolutions were even revealed), and everyone thought it was Mewthree.

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Psychic-Type

HP: 106
Attack: 150
Defense: 70
Speed: 140
Special: 194

Phew! That's a lot of Pokémon! Now that that's all out of the way, let's continue on.

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By the way, in case you were wondering where to get more Mist Stones, you can buy them at the Brick Town Poké Mart. So yeah, go crazy.

And that's it for now. I might be gone for a little bit. Because now I'm going to complete the PokéDex. Yep. I'm going to catch and fully-evolve every single one. I'll also document anything of interest I find along the way. See you guys then!
Last edited by pgj1997 on Sun Apr 21, 2024 2:18 am, edited 4 times in total.

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I'm back!

While I was away, I managed to complete the PokéDex, including...

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Finding this thing was a nightmare, let me tell you. It took me nearly two hours of going back and forth in the same place until this goddamn Bruce Lee wannabe finally spawned (and that's with fast forwarding on my emulator, by the way). It's the longest time I've ever spent searching for a single encounter in any Pokémon game. Fuck.

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Anyway, that brings our grand total to 172 Pokémon registered in the PokéDex. But before we claim our prize, there's a few loose ends we need to tie up first.

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On top of the Celedon Mansion, it looks like Tom has left. But he did leave a note for us.
Dear Red,
I feel myself fading from this world.
I have you to thank.
But...
That creature you have.
It is only a piece of the whole.
Or rather, it possessed a piece.
With its capture, I believe that piece has returned to the whole.
And I must shift away from here.
Thank you, Red.
Continue to wander.
Continue to discover.
The worlds are far greater than you can imagine.

The note ends with a code:
CC-002, SFB4-004, OCB4-255
Okay, so, here's what this code means. "CC" is an acronym for "Celedon City". "002" is a coordinate pointing to the upper-left corner of the city. So press A on this tile right here:
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Huh, there's a paper on the ground.
Pmwku Xgra 30
B’rs urdxnwfiz fu tmxdxn’g afoxogusj peht fnbjuurc aaf neyd.
Pc fla ikwzx pawh U jkehciiz bj vuw nxosmvya ebfs yekburc.
Kaqqrpeu kq vavawhiz tj cbtkkpizmpr pvmx yhqzp ezowboi knn fqwatnqt fu waqmhal.
Pvayca E ruwpkqgf xdbo Uusrtjbu, mp fwm ni knn czpu vdozga.
The number "30" is the only thing readable. This is our clue as to getting the key. Getting to the point here, this is a Vigenère cipher, and the key is "MEWTWO". I ran it through an online decrypter, and this is what it gave me:
Diary: June 30
I’ve inherited my father’s obsession with bringing her back.
To the point that I followed in his research into cloning.
Recently we received an opportunity that could advance our research by decades.
Though I distrust this Giovanni, it may be our only chance.
Woah, plot twist. Tom is Giovanni's son! Didn't see that coming, no seriously.

Real quick, let's use this cipher on Doomsday's PokéDex entry, and see if it gets us anything.

The site I used automatically detected the key as "TOM", and this is what it spat out:
I can not forgive.
I can never forgive.
Looks like someone has daddy issues. Yeah, Giovanni is evil, but still.

Going to the next coordinates, "SFB4-004". That means B4 of the Seafoam islands. So, the fourth tile from the top-left of the room.

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Huh, there's a paper on the ground.
Icjzd: Gjzhb 31
Oiybnz’x ygxjlrujhca muem kurtjx. Jtq io wzl finnrvl, idz miymx bjdj iwtd vawzaqb zm vwwy yinh.
Pqtpjvsc qix bra byjxth, jvi qn, vtnqqsa.
Cw bbjb jhma muem ybn otxb enmq cx nx ot? Nx emuc mian wk lniqccg?
Jhxclb.
Rn N gday gnmy nqm ayag lima bbx bts fqyb da, ybnv N’fu ot. C’u txyjzhb cpj qxzqx rn N gday, nqmwy ra si nvi C fwzfm ot.
The key this time is "FUJI".
Diary: March 31
Father’s experiments have failed. All of our waiting, our hopes have only brought us more pain.
Giovanni has his weapon, and we, nothing.
To what ends have the gods wish us to go? To what edge of reality?
Enough.
If I must meet the very gods who toy with us, then I’ll go. I'll search the world if I must, there is no end I would go.
And then "Mewtwo Strikes Back" happened. I'm assuming.

Anyway, "OCB4-255". "OC" stands for "Outcast Cave", so make another treacherous journey through it, and press A on this tile right here:
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Huh, there's a paper on the ground.
Dubvp: Uzlrfwz
Xlvrq ieme if prnpfh, khut qfneuii aze M? Zt efids fp fv a ipvcd ejqzlms xf Mk pae, bgu wcisixcy pjjwedfrk.
Kmoxf ie jwflmuiu, Jaixf ie dyk org, ek lqbwk fas rfw uu wveyt. Xyie ryzef usnn, uu jvext tvaofjll.
Yz jrttfv uoqtr’k rqdsxnuai de, as imez iii pudxlrq.
Bzvrmhi Gowfqfn msi iesbvuep bw xopt lvrq, zik ofiiis efids yvgy tmnii, sqfq dodf ek pqbgv wuul yuybrj.
Sfjpc I obr jezti khq nsesffv cudlmeg uo xyie xsilp, ulzs mdglrefh vyq uliont aztt feth ag mks ypzvmqoxj.
I’xm iecdztk ttjw uimsc, aueu xf bq tewe. Fii vnfjxp ttbx guft yj hqsi dak txzlx ci jkgmozns bvfuze. M’cl rjru a ibc ko bvx khut vzgtu.
M granmje.
The key this time is "AMBER".
Diary: Unknown
Where have we landed, this monster and I? It seems to be a world similar to My own, but slightly different.
Kanto is isolated, Johto is cut off, at least for now it seems. This quiet town, it feels peaceful.
My father doesn’t recognize me, or even her picture.
Average Pokémon are regarded as gods here, yet others seems much tamer, seem more at peace with humans.
Still I can sense the monster lurking in this world, this accursed eye throbs with each of its movements.
I’ll encrypt this diary, just to be safe. The entity that puts us here may still be skulking around. I’ll find a way to put this right.
I promise.
"Kanto is isolated, Johto is cut off". I have a feeling he might come from a Gen II universe. If you remember, that Gen lets you explore Kanto, albeit set after a time skip. And Gen II does let you transfer Pokémon from a Gen I cartridge pretty early on. Though there, it's established that it's done through time travel, and not any sort of dimension hopping (in the original games anyway. The remakes replaced it with Pal Park from Diamond and Pearl). Perhaps that experiment eventually turned into something else... This is tying into a popular and widely accepted theory that every single Pokémon cartridge (or, in this case, save file) is its own alternative universe, all set by your actions done in the games. Anyway, looks like he ultimately did find a way to put this right: us.

Okay, now that we've concluded this sideplot, let's head over to the Game Freak office at Celedon Mansion.

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Wow! Excellent! You completed your Pokédex! Congratulations! ...
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And with that, we're finally done.

So now that we've 100% completed this game, I'd like to give my final thoughts on this ROM hack.

Simply put, this ROM hack is great. It's a fantastic celebration of all those playground rumors that were abundant before datamining made them easy to disprove. All of the rumors represented are brought over faithfully, with some creative license thrown in here and there to make them feel more natural. In other words, they were made more simple when needed so it feels like something from the official Pokémon games. For those of you out there who remember coming across them, or even tried some of them back in the day, I bet you got a real kick out of seeing all of them brought to life here.

I've noticed that acts of kindness was a common theme in this ROM hack. Yes, I know it's a really common trope in RPGs for NPCs to give you stuff after doing something for them, but hear me out. Bill let us into his secret garden because we kept helping him out. The Thirsty Girl at the Celedon Department Store acted like a brat, but she gave us TMs after doing what she asked, and her brother gave us another one for helping out. The woman at the Celedon Game Corner straight up gave us a Pikablu just because we were nice enough to talk to her. And this all culminated at Brick Town, where we volunteered to enter Outcast Cave, and tamed all of the powerful Pokémon that were causing the town to go on lockdown. And for doing that, we were rewarded with the Mist Stone, an item that turns our Pokémon into literal gods. Maybe I'm reading too much into this, but just give me this one. I like this a lot.

Of course, it isn't solely focused on the "rumors" part. It's no secret that the Gen I games are hard to go back to. Not only are they extremely buggy, but there's a lot of annoyances that were addressed in the later games. Like the Running Shoes, or being able to use field moves on roadblocks by pressing A on them. This ROM hack fixes a lot of that. Hell, even the GameShark item can cut down a lot of the back-and-forth you normally have to do. Even though using it is technically considered cheating (as heavily implied in the game itself), when used responsibly like I've been doing throughout this let's play, it makes for a much more enjoyable playthrough.

It just goes to show just how far ROM hacking has come in recent years. I remember back in the early to late 2000s, where tools were limited, and the only ROM hacks of Pokémon games that people wanted to make were for the Gen III games simply because they were easier. This resulted in a bunch of low effort, poorly executed games that were often badly designed, and were riddled with problems that were annoying at best, and straight up immersion breaking at worst. Nowadays, with decompilation projects available to the public, and coding becoming more and more widely understood, people can now make ROM hacks that can add and improve upon the games they're based on. Because of this, I myself have gained a newfound appreciation for ROM hacking recently, due to all the new advancements that have been made over the years. This hack is just one example of the potential they can have with these new tools.

I'd like to thank a user named "SailorClef", who made a page on Angelfire documenting a good number these rumors, which was a massive help in researching their origins, and how they came to be.

I hope you all enjoyed my first text-based let's play. I had a lot of fun making this. Perhaps I'll do another one in the future. Maybe another Pokémon ROM hack? Or perhaps something else? We'll have to see.

Before I go, take a look at this hack's page on PokemonROMHacks.com real quick, more specifically, the box art: https://pokemonromhacks.com/pokemon-red-rumor/
It's pretty basic, and definitely doesn't do the ROM hack justice. I'm going to remedy this right now. I leave you all with this custom box art I made myself that you can use for your launchers. If by chance my let's play causes this hack to surge in popularity, we'll at least have an image that better represents the game.

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