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It’s certainly been a while since I turned on my yellow GameBoy Color. A good few years, if not more; I’ve spend so much time on my GameBoy Advance and DS Lite that I’d simply forgotten about the little yellow handheld console. It was just a bulk of plastic that lay in my small collection of old games, among my numerous Pokémon cartridges.
It’s been so long, in fact, that I’ve misplaced my GameBoy Advance. Actually, that’s a lie; I’d lent it to my Grandfather in an attempt to teach him about video games and I’d never seen it or my Pokémon Silver since. This was fine for me, as I was more than happy to play DS games; the yellow console became more and more a separate part of my life. In fact, until very recently, I’d barely recalled I owned it.
Over the last week, my GameBoy Color has been sitting on my desktop, my numerous Pokémon games beside it as I ran through my games to see where I’d been when I last picked them up. Sadly, two of the games had run out of internal battery, meaning I couldn’t save and my previous games had been unintentionally deleted. They were my Pokémon Yellow (on which I had a Mew and an Articuno, and recall having a save file standing right in front of Zapdos. Alas, no legendaries for me…) and, much more emotionally, my Pokémon Gold.
Now, I’d loved my Pokémon Gold. I’d spent hours playing it when I was 10. It was the first game of the G/S/C series I owned, and the Pokémon I had in it were so important to me. My Cyndaquil was my favourite – it remains to this day my favourite Pokémon. I’d never evolved it (I have a strict policy of never evolving my starters) and it was Level 83. I loved it like a pet, or like a child. It was so, so precious to me.
But one day, when I was at my Mum’s work and had nothing to do, I was looking up glitches. Glitches were my favourite part of the R/B/Y generation (my Pokémon Blue, as I noticed today, is saved surfing on the patch of sea byCinnabarIsland, searching for MissingNo.) and so I was intrigued by finding some in my Gold. Alas, I came across the cloning glitch, which I used extensively, until I found out its ultimate use – getting all three starter Pokémon.
Of course, in a rush to try and fill my Pokédex, I immediately followed the instructions. My heart was racing as I turned off the game at the exact moment the console warned me not to and I could’ve sworn that as I did, I heard a small, faint noise from the worn-out speakers of my GameBoy. It sounded almost like the forlorn cry of a Cyndaquil…
It was only after I’d obtained my three starters that I realised what I had done. I had lost my Cyndaquil. My beloved, darling Cyndaquil. I’d thrown it out, deleted, killed it just to get the two other starters; starter Pokémon I didn’t even like very much. And I, being not much older than ten, did the only thing a child can do in such a situation – I cried.
It took me an hour or so before I was ready to face the console again; I was so utterly distraught that I wanted to kill Nintendo for not allowing multiple saves in Pokémon games. Still, I pulled my act together, and decided that since I did the glitch to fill my Pokédex the least I could do was evolve my starters this time around and actually complete the damn thing.
Months later, I was atBlackthornCity, training, determined not to face the Elite Four until I had all three starters evolved to their highest level. I’d trained for hours, but I just couldn’t find the time to get Quilava to evolve (I liked Quilava least of my starters, as he reminded me of my old Cyndaquil.) Eventually, I just stopped and moved on toCrystal, where I was enjoying myself and had fewer regrets. I also had two legendary dogs.
So, years later, here I was. Picking up my cartridge to try once again to evolve Quilava. Ready to face the bitter regret that was my Pokémon Gold.
Until I switched it on and noticed that there was no ‘CONTINUE’ option. My save file had been wiped; my internal battery was flat. And so, relieved I wouldn’t have to face the previous save file, I decided to start again.
Of course, this time, with no internal battery, I decided I should try again and see how far through the game I could get. All was playing as normal; I’d chosen Chikorita as my starter because I really didn’t like Totodile and I didn’t feel ready to choose Cyndaquil yet. Things were going fine and I felt like I was enjoying myself – G/S/C was always my favourite gen and I remembered just how immersive these games were.
Then I ran into that mysterious red-haired boy, ???. Only then did I realise that I should really have chosen Totodile – I was now going to have to battle a Cyndaquil. I was already feeling regrets when he sent out his first and only Pokémon and I of course knew what it would be.
I wasn’t expecting to hear the faint cry I heard as he set out his Cyndaquil, though. It wasn’t the same as Cyndaquil’s usual cry – it might have been years since I’d played the game, but I’d recognise that cry anywhere. Instead, it sounded slightly sad and lonely and reminded me of the sound my GameBoy had made as I’d inadvertently saved over my Cyndaquil. The cry was mournful and sent a shiver down my spine. My eyes glanced at the Cyndaquil’s HP bar, only to notice something completely unexpected about the Pokémon before me. It wasn’t level 5, like I’d expected.
It was level 83.
I stared in horror at my screen, before being filled with rage. That was my Cyndaquil! How dare my rival steal my friend! I was angry, but I knew there was little I could do about it; I couldn’t save the game, and even if I did, Chikorita just couldn’t beat a level 83 Pokémon. I did the only thing I could think of, and turned the console off. I was half expecting to hear that forlorn cry again, but it didn’t come.
After going downstairs and getting myself a refreshing drink of apple juice, I returned to my room to try again at seeing how far I could get. I decided that this time, despite my personal dislike of it, I would choose Cyndaquil – perhaps I would get my friend back! I stood by the pokéball for Cyndaquil and accepted it as a starter, at which point something even weirder happened.
“JAMES received CHIKORITA!”
I certainly hadn’t selected Chikorita, and when I looked, I was standing in front of the place where Cyndaquil’s pokéball still sat on the table. Chikorita’s pokéball, however, at the far right of the table, was missing. I let Professor Elm ramble for a while and, as soon as I could, checked my party. I couldn’t believe my eyes; Chikorita was there instead of Cyndaquil. And even weirder, she was holding an item.
I checked the item in a mix of wonder and confusion. It was mail. I opened it, and read in horror “HE DOESN’T WANT YOU ANYMORE.”
Was this a message from Chikorita about Cyndaquil? I didn’t get it – I’d loved that Pokémon to bits, but it didn’t want me back, though I’d made one mistake? What struck me as strange was that this was actually happening, though – I’d played through this opening sequence enough times, thanks to getting all the starters, and I knew that this just didn’t happen. It felt like a dream. It didn’t feel real.
But clearly, it was happening. So, to check that this wasn’t a bug in the game and was actually my old Cyndaquil refusing to speak to me, I restarted the game once more. The same thing happened: when I selected Cyndaquil, I got Chikorita. Once again, she had mail, this time reading, “JUST GET OVER HIM.”
I decided to try once more and this time to pick Totodile; as much as I disliked to Pokémon, I had to see if this was just occurring when I tried to pick Cyndaquil. My scientific mind just wouldn’t let me accept that Cyndaquil didn’t want me to pick it and I had to test to see if he was determined to be my rival’s. Strangely, when I picked Totodile nothing different occurred – I played through the game for a while with a water Pokémon I really didn’t want but felt content that I wouldn’t have to encounter my Cyndaquil. Still, on the off-chance that my rival’s Pokémon was once again a higher level than anticipated, I trained my Totodile up to level 20; the process took several hours on account of being restricted to such a small area with such low-level Pokémon and I just couldn’t keep the training up higher than that. By this time the sun was starting to set, so I left the GameBoy on, lying on my desktop, and had a quick meal.
When I returned, I felt ready to face my rival once again, looking forward to smashing his weak Chikorita with my Totodile. But as he sent out his Pokémon, I heard the distorted, mournful cry again, and looked at the text. He was sending out a Cyndaquil.
And once again, it was level 83.
This time I decided to fight. Clearly, if Cyndaquil was fighting me even when I chose a Totodile, this is what he wanted. I selected the only WATER move a level 20 Totodile can learn – water gun. The result shocked me.
Despite Cyndaquil clearly having a higher speed – there was no way my level 83 Cyndaquil would be slower than this hulking, slow level 20 – Totodile struck first. It was a critical hit, and super effective, and managed to drain a fair amount of Cyndaquil’s HP, around a third. After that, the game paused, as if processing. Cyndaquil didn’t attack. I waited for a minute, tense, before some text appeared on the screen:
“CYNDAQUIL used SWIFT.”
It was my favourite move to use with my old Cyndaquil and I smiled briefly as it hit Totodile, the old memories bringing a small tear to my eye. Yet, somehow, Totodile survived; in fact, he only lost about a third of his HP, too. This confused me, as I was certain that move would wipe Totodile out. I repeated with Water Gun and, once again, it somehow managed to drain a further third of Cyndaquil’s HP, putting him inOrange. Cyndaquil responded with Swift again, and, again, it barely damaged Totodile more than Totodile was hurting Cyndaquil.
I remember thinking to myself, what had happened to my game. It hadn’t been dropped in a sewer; it hadn’t been bought second hand from a dodgy shop with a pentagram carved in the back. It was my old Pokémon Gold, my favourite game in the whole, wide world, and it was screwing up on me.
I repeated the move again, but it wasn’t quite enough to KO Cyndaquil; he was left with just the tiniest sliver of red in his HP bar. I’d realised, however, that Cyndaquil would be able to KO Totodile with his one move. He did.
The battle ended, but instead of saying that I’d whited out, as it should have done, I cut back to the overworld. I was confused, and checked my party – sure enough, the one Pokémon I had had fainted. Logically, I should be in aPokémonCenter. I took one step towards the city, away from my rival, and instantly, the battle animation played and the screen cut to black.
As the battle screen opened, I saw the silhouette of a Cyndaquil cross the screen:
“CYNDAQUIL wants to BATTLE.”
Instead of sending out a Pokémon, my Cyndaquil just sat there, facing me. I had no Pokémon to choose, but yet the battle options appeared. I clicked FIGHT, surprised that my trainer sprite was still on-screen. I had four options: “Apologise,” “Hit,” “Beg” and “Leave.” I didn’t want to hit Cyndaquil and I certainly didn’t want to leave – messages left with Chikorita, the best thing to do was apologise. I hit the button.
“JAMES used APOLOGISE.”
“CYNDAQUIL ignored the apology.”
“CYNDAQUIL used FLAMETHROWER.”
Only then did I notice my trainer had a HP bar. Worse, Cyndaquil had lowered it to less than half with just that one attack. If I wanted to survive this, I knew what I had to do.
“JAMES used BEG.”
“CYNDAQUIL stopped to listen.”
And then the round ended, without Cyndaquil reacting – I knew now that this was my chance. Now I had caught his attention, maybe he’d listen to my apology.
“JAMES used APOLOGISE.”
There was a pause, a very long pause. Nothing happened on-screen. It seemed like almost an hour had passed – it had certainly grown dark outside. After ten minutes of tense waiting, I realised that perhaps I had to actually apologise to Cyndaquil, rather than just use a move. Feeling extremely self-aware and rather embarrassed – knowing that, after all, I was speaking to a bunch of pixels on a device with no microphone – I began to speak.
“Cyndaquil, buddy,” I began, my voice a hoarse whisper from both embarrassment and thirst. “I’m sorry I saved over you. I just didn’t think about what that glitch would do at the time.”
I cleared my throat, and continued, feeling more stupid every second. What I was saying didn’t affect the screen at all.
“Look, if you can hear me, I want you to know that I never, ever meant to lose you. I cried for half an hour after I realised and hated myself for days. I-if there’s any way you could have me back…” My voice caught in my throat. I was overcome with emotion, true, but I also realised how much I sounded like a character out of a poorly-written romantic comedy. This just didn’t seem real.
Still, I felt I had more to say – the screen was still unchanged so at least Cyndaquil hadn’t sent a flamethrower at me yet. I whispered softly into the night, feeling more and more each second like a moronic, helpless romantic.
“I love you, buddy.”
There was a short, short pause, but it seemed as if it took forever. Then, text appeared on-screen.
“CYNDAQUIL ignored the apology!”
“CYNDAQUIL used SWIFT.”
The response shocked me. I’d poured my heart out to that Cyndaquil, and he’d rejected me! Not to mention his attack was strong enough to knock me out; I whited out and awoke outside thePokémonCenter, as expected. Strangely, as I’d whited out I could’ve sworn I heard a familiar noise from my speakers, another distorted Cyndaquil cry. This time, however, it seemed almost angry.
As I returned to the overworld, Totodile in hand, I realised that I was going to have to train some more if I was going to beat my rival. Not looking forward to the amount of training that levelling up so much would take, I headed out into the tall grass – I didn’t want to leave my game on overnight to waste battery, so decided I would have to literally play the whole night long. I made a few thermos flasks’ worth of coffee and prepared myself for a sleepless night.
Several hundred battles later – I’d lost count around battle 189 – and my Totodile was approaching level 60. The sun was beginning to rise; the light streaming through my open curtains and making me squint. I turned my back to the window and carried on, regardless and, when Totodile was level 65 at 9 AM, I felt I was finally ready to try again. I headed out to face my rival.
As expected, ??? sent out a Cyndaquil and, once again, it was level 83. I sent out my Totodile, ready to Hydro Pump Cyndaquil and get on with the game. I selected Hydro Pump and managed to hit, dealing Cyndaquil more than half damage. It was incredible – Cyndaquil’s Swift barely reduced Totodile’s HP at all. Finally, this was a fair battle – and by that, I mean one I was likely to win.
My second Hydro Pump missed, which was a shame – Totodile’s HP was now low enough to warrant a visit to thePokémonCenterafter this battle. Still, my third hit home and successfully knocked Cyndaquil out. My Rival, as always, was confused and angered by his loss and stormed off with his usual, superior attitude. I ran straight to thePokémonCenterto heal Totodile up before returning to Elm and the police investigation.
When I arrived at Elm’s lab, something very strange occurred. I was asked what my rival’s name was – I thought for a while about what kind of name I should give him. Eventually I settled on Harley, deciding it was a good name – it would continually remind me of one of my friends, one of the few people I’d trust with that Cyndaquil. I smiled slightly to myself as I told the police officer the name, at which point my game did something I didn’t expect. Two exclamation marks appeared over the heads of the adults, and Elm walked to stand next to me.
“ELM: JAMES, this boy is very dangerous. You’ll need some more protection against him.”
Elm then walked over to his table and, while I stared on in disbelief, picked up Chikorita and gave it to me. After he gave a brief explanation of how I should avoid Harley and similar warnings had been pressed on me by the police officer, I left the lab, feeling dazed and confused.
I’d chosen the name Harley because to me it represented safety and security for my Cyndaquil, yet somehow my game had decided to make my rival all the more dangerous. I didn’t understand what was going on. I checked my party and, sure enough, right underneath my Totodile was a level 5 Chikorita, holding mail. I was reluctant to open it, after the last two times, but I checked anyway. It simply read, “YOU SEE NOW?”
Chikorita still wanted me to give up on my Cyndaquil, to leave it alone. And while I knew I would have to give up on Cyndaquil to carry on the game, I felt that I was going on a quest to get my Cyndaquil back, not to become a Pokémon Master.
I played through the game for a while until my second battle with Harley in Azalea. His team was the usual mix of Ghastly and Zubat, at their normal levels, followed by Cyndaquil. Cyndaquil hadn’t gained any levels, remaining still at level 83. Well, my Totodile had grown a fair amount since, hitting level 70, and so I took down Cyndaquil with ease; as he fainted, I could’ve sworn I’d heard an all-too familiar cry from the speakers of my GameBoy, but by this point thought nothing of it.
The battle ended, but my rival said something I didn’t expect.
“I thought I’d stolen the best POKÉMON,” he said. “I guess I was wrong. These things are worthless.”
I was shocked by what he said, but he left and, as usual, I couldn’t follow him. Again, very little out of the ordinary happened, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that my goal in this game was different. I put the GameBoy down and took a break for lunch.
When I came back, I picked up the game and things seemed even weirder. As I played through, I noticed that Harley didn’t show up at all in two of the places he was meant to – theBurnedTowerand Goldenrod Tunnel showed a distinct lack of rival battles. The game just continued as if I had beaten him in these places and it didn’t affect the gameplay in the slightest.
The sun was setting again as I headed throughVictory Road, ready to face the Elite Four. My Totodile had reached a formidable level 82 – I had stopped using it in battles recently because I did not want it to reach level 83, out of fear the game might spring something on me. I also had a handful of other Pokémon, including Chikorita at level 43 and Entei (which I was glad I had caught, as it was the only legendary dog I didn’t have inCrystal) at level 45. As I stepped out ofVictory Road, however, I heard a noise that sent a shiver down my spine. It sounded almost as if someone were being beaten, the noise was so percussive and painful – but it was followed by the terrified, hurt cry of a Cyndaquil.
“HARLEY: Come on! You’re strong, aren’t you?”
I blinked in shock and rushed up towards the Indigo Plateau. As I approached, I saw Harley repeatedly walking into an overworld sprite – I was instantly confused, as I could’ve sworn Pokémon didn’t get overworld sprites often, if at all, in generation II. Clearly, though, the action was used to suggest he was beating Cyndaquil in an attempt to make it stronger. I walked up to him and pressed A.
“HARLEY: What do you want? You want to beat me? Well, I’m stronger!”
As I read the text the battle intro played and I saw, for the first time in a long time, the phrase “HARLEY wants to battle!” I sighed and prepared myself for the fight, but I saw he only had one Pokémon. I thought that it was strange – surely he’d have a full party by now? But low and behold, all he had was a Cyndaquil – and it was still at level 83.
As the sprite’s silhouette moved across the screen, I sighed, but my breath caught in my throat as I saw the sprite in colour. It was bruised and bleeding in places, and looked sad – completely unlike the usual, cheery, cute look of Cyndaquil. I was shocked, knowing that there was no way this could’ve been programmed into the game.
My Chikorita, though strong, was no match for the fire-type Pokémon it faced and so, when it was hit by a Fire Blast, it didn’t stand a chance. It was knocked out in one move; I didn’t like the idea, but I had no choice but to send Totodile out. I debated a while over whether to attack or let Cyndaquil win – looking at it, I just couldn’t bring myself to hurt it, but at the same time I couldn’t bring myself to go throughVictory Roadagain. I selected Hydro Pump.
My Totodile had grown since its last battle with Cyndaquil and it succeeded in knocking it out immediately. As Cyndaquil fainted, its cry seemed as if it were in extreme pain; the cheery victory music seemed rather out-of-place.
“HARLEY: No! This blasted POKÉMON is useless!”
After the battle ended my GameBoy returned me to the overworld. Harley said nothing and walked away silently, leaving me alone to face the Elite Four. I made myself some more coffee and settled down for another sleepless night.
I needn’t have worried too much – the battles with the Elite Four were relatively easy with my Totodile so strong. In fact, I was much more interested in making it to Kanto and, specifically, to Mt Moon for my final battle with Harley; I knew that that was where my true goal lay. As I fought my way to Kanto, I kept in mind my goal – I had to get Cyndaquil back, I just had to.
By two in the morning I was at Mt Moon, ready to fight in the hopes that I would get my Cyndaquil back. I approached the place where my rival would usually stand, only to hear the same beating sound that I’d heard at the Indigo Plateau. This time, the cry following it was more prolonged, but Harley was nowhere in sight. There was a short silence, followed by Harley walking on-screen, up to me.
“HARLEY: I guess that POKÉMON was useless, after all.”
That was all he said to me before walking off-screen. I took a moment to think about what he’d said, before rushing in the direction he’d come from. As I’d thought, I saw an overworld Pokémon sprite there; the ground it lay on was red. I ran up to it and pressed A; it disappeared, and a text box appeared:
“JAMES received a CYNDAQUIL.”
I was overcome with relief – so happy and joyful that I instantly ran outside and flew to thePokémonCenterinPewterCity. I walked in – but before handing my Pokémon over to Nurse Joy, checked my party to see how Cyndaquil was doing. He was on 0 HP, as I’d expected. But what shocked me was the few letters where “FNT” should have appeared.
I couldn’t believe that Cyndaquil was dead; this was a Pokémon game! Nobody actually dies! I almost ran the short distance form the door to the counter of thePokémonCenter, and mashed the A button as hard as I could when I was standing by Nurse Joy. All was going to plan, until she returned my Pokémon to me.
“I’m sorry, we couldn’t heal your CYNDAQUIL.”
I sat there in disbelief. I’d spent two days on this game in an attempt to get this Pokémon back and the game had killed it! It was just too much to take in and within minutes hot, salty tears were streaming down my face. I was angry at myself for crying – I was too old for crying over a stupid game – but my anger just fuelled the tears more.
After a short while, I started to focus my anger on Harley. It was, after all, he who had killed Cyndaquil. He had stolen, abused and killed my childhood friend, the creature that was closest to my heart for so many months. I knew what I had to do – it was technically a Wednesday in-game, which meant Harley should be waiting to challenge me at the Indigo Plateau. I flew there at once.
In blind fury, I walked up to Harley.
“HARLEY: What, do you want to avenge that CYNDAQUIL or something? Well, I’ve got stronger Pokémon now. I didn’t need a weakling like him!”
The battle initiated – and my God, did he have stronger Pokémon. A team of five; the first, a level 98 Moltres. I shivered, knowing the first Pokémon in my party was Chikorita, and knew the first thing I had to do was switch to Totodile. I did so, and was hit by a Wing Attack. I frowned, but selected Hydro Pump – it was super effective, and Moltres fainted in one move. Totodile had now reached level 87.
Harley then sent out a Zapdos; fearing the worst, I sent out Chikorita. She was almost half the level, but she wouldn’t be hurt too much by Zapdos thanks to her type. I selected SolarBeam; Zapdos hit first with a Drill Peck, draining almost all of Chikorita’s HP. I crossed my fingers as the SolarBeam animation played – but Chikorita had only knocked Zapdos into orange HP. I hit SolarBeam again, but I was certain Chikorita would faint first.
“ZAPDOS used DRIL PECK!”
“The attack missed!”
“CHIKORITA used SOLARBEAM!”
I stared in shock at the screen – the game had given me the opening I needed to defeat Zapdos! I was so shocked, I nearly spilled my coffee on my desktop. With that one SolarBeam, Zapdos was down and this battle was starting to take a turn for the better.
I was half expecting Harley to send out an Articuno next, but instead he sent out a Typhlosion – I was worried it would be level 83, but thankfully it was level 98 like everything else in his party. This was strange – did the game not know I had a water-type starter? I switched to Totodile and battled for a minute or two. His remaining two Pokémon were also, by some bizarre coincidence, fire-type, which left me with very little work to do.
The battle confused me, as I has no idea why it had been made so easy by his choice of Pokémon. It seemed almost an anticlimax – I had spent days on this, yet my Cyndaquil was dead and my revenge was too easy. What was I supposed to do now? Just accept that Cyndaquil was gone?
“HARLEY: No, you don’t have to accept that.”
D-did the game read my mind?
I was still in shock as the battle ended and I was shown the overworld, where Harley stood before me. He kept talking, though:
“I’m sorry that CYNDAQUIL is dead, JAMES. Really, I had no idea I’d hurt it that much. But I think I know something you can do about it.”
I sat, scrolling intently through the text, barely breathing or blinking. I was engrossed; was there a way to bring Cyndaquil back?
“That ENTEI you have – it is one of three legendary POKÉMON created by HO-OH. I might be wrong, but doesn’t that mean HO-OH has the power to create life?”
“So here’s what you do – go to the Tin Tower, find HO-OH and try and get it to bring your CYNDAQUIL back to life. You’ll need this to get up to see HO-OH.”
Then, impossibly, the phrase “JAMES received the RAINBOW WING!” appeared, and Harley walked off. So many questions flooded my mind, but so many answers arrived too. This explained why I hadn’t received the Rainbow Wing earlier in the game, at the usual time. I didn’t waste time - I had no idea how much battery I had left, after all – and headed straight back to theTinTower.
Encountering Ho-Oh was the most nerve-wracking moment of my life. I’d gone over forty hours without sleep and the coffee and the hours of staring at an unlit screen were taking their toll, but I knew I couldn’t rest yet. I had to get my Cyndaquil back.
Thankfully, the game didn’t want me to battle Ho-Oh. It simply guided me through dialogue, selecting YES and NO appropriately while talking – a talking Pokémon! If the game hadn’t been so strange already, I would’ve sworn it was the sleep deprivation, not Ho-Oh, talking – with the legendary bird. The dialogue (or should that be monologue?) was as you’d expect, nothing out of the ordinary save for Ho-Oh’s final words.
“Your CYNDAQUIL will be restored, but at a great cost… [YES/NO]”
I pressed YES a little too quickly – perhaps it was the coffee, perhaps it was the days of play, but something made me want this over. A Cyndaquil’s cry came through my speakers – the normal, happy cry of a Cyndaquil – and everything seemed well with the world. As I found out the next evening – I had fallen asleep at long last from exhaustion and my battery had run flat – the game would even save files again. I was reunited with Cyndaquil, my childhood friend, and nothing could stop us. I played the game almost non-stop (except fro sleep, as I’d learned that lesson all too well) for the following weeks.
It was only a month later, when I decided to quickly do the MissingNo. glitch one more time, for old times sake, that I remembered Ho-Oh’s words. Surfing up and down that stretch ofCinnabarIsland, the battle music played. MissingNo. appeared. But the first Pokémon in my party wasn’t what I’d thought it was – my level 100 Charizard was replaced with my Mewtwo. I tried to switch Pokémon, since I’d only done this for the nostalgia, when I saw four small letters by Charizard’s status.
It was not just Charizard, I discovered soon after with a methodical playthrough of every single one of my Pokémon games, that was so stricken. Every starter I’d ever had – Red’s Bulbasaur,Crystal’s Chikorita, Ruby’s Treeko, Diamond’s Piplup… That was the cost I’d paid to bring my Cyndaquil back to me.
The scariest thing is that their deaths bothered me not one bit.