Pokemon Black Creepypasta

 Pokemon Black Creepypasta

I’m what you would call a collector of bootleg Pokemon games. You know, like Pokemon Diamond and Jade, or Chaos Black. It’s amazing to see the frequency with which you can find them at pawn shops, Goodwill, flea markets, and such. They’re generally fun, too, even if they are unplayable (which they often are). The mistranslations and poor quality make them unintentionally hilarious.

I’ve been able to find most of the ones that I’ve played online, but there’s one I haven’t seen any mention of anywhere. I bought it at a flea market about five years ago.

Pokemon Black Creepypasta

Here’s a picture of the cartridge, in case anyone recognizes it. Unfortunately, I lost the game when I moved years ago, so I can’t provide you with a ROM or any screenshots. Sorry.

The game started with the familiar Nidorino and Gengar intro of Red and Blue. However, the “press start” screen had been altered. Red was there, but there were no Pokemon cycling through next to him. It also said “Black Version” under the logo. Upon selecting “New Game”, the game started with the Professor Oak speech. It quickly became evident that the game was essentially a slightly-altered version of Pokemon Red.

If you looked at your Pokemon after selecting your starter, you had another Pokemon in addition to Bulbasaur, Charmander, or Squirtle: “GHOST”. The Pokemon was level 1 and had the sprite of the Ghosts that are encountered in Lavender Tower prior to obtaining the Silph Scope. It had one attack: Curse. I know there’s a real move with that name, but it didn’t exist in Generation 1, so it appears to have been hacked in.

Just like the Ghosts in Lavender Tower, defending Pokemon were unable to attack Ghost - it would only say they were too scared to move. When the move Curse was used in battle, the screen would cut to black. The cry of the defending Pokemon would be heard, but it was distorted and played at a much lower pitch than normal. The battle screen would then reappear and the defending Pokemon would be gone. If the move was used in a battle against a trainer, there would be one fewer Pokeball showing when the little indicators representing the other trainer’s amount of Pokemon appeared.

The implication was that the Pokemon died.

What’s even stranger is that after defeating a trainer and seeing the normal “Red received $200 for winning!” message, the battle commands would reappear. If you selected “Run,” the battle would end as normal, but you could also select Curse. If you did, it would seem like nothing happened…but when the game cut back to the overworld, the trainer’s sprite would be gone. If you left the area and reentered it, the spot the trainer was would be replaced with a tombstone like the ones at Lavender Tower.

The move Curse was not usable in all instances. It would fail against Ghost Pokemon. It would also fail if it was used against trainers you would have to face again, such as Giovanni or your rival. It was usable in your final battle against them, however. I figured this was the gimmick of the game - allowing you to use the previously unusable Ghosts. Because Curse made the game so easy, I essentially used it throughout the entire adventure.

The game changed quite a bit after defeating the Elite Four, however. After viewing the Hall of Fame (mine consisted of Ghost and a couple of very under-leveled Pokemon), the screen cut to black. A box appeared, showing the words “Many years later…” It then cut to Lavender Tower. An old man was standing around, looking at tombstones. It took me a while to realize this when I played, but this old man is the player character.

The old man moved at only half the normal walking speed. You no longer have any of your Pokemon with you - not even Ghost who, up to this point, had been impossible to remove from your party in any way. The overworld was entirely empty and devoid of people. However, the tombstones of the trainers you used Curse on were still there.

You could go pretty much anywhere at this point, except for areas only accessible via HM. Regardless of where you went, the music of Lavender Town continued on in an endless loop. After wandering for a while, I found that you can get all the way through Diglett’s Cave, back to Pallet Town. One of the bushes you can cut that normally blocks the path is no longer there.

Upon entering your house and going to the exact tile where you start the game, the screen would cut to black.

A sprite of Caterpie appeared. It was replaced by a Weedle and then a Pidgey. I soon realized, as the Pokemon progressed from Rattata to Blastoise, that these were all of the Pokemon that I had used Curse on. After the end of my rival’s team, a youngster appeared. Then, a bug catcher. These were the trainers I had cursed.

Throughout the sequence, the Lavender Town music was playing…but it was slowly decreasing in pitch. By the time my rival appeared on the screen, it was little more than a demonic rumble.

Another cut to black. A few moments later, the battle screen suddenly appeared. The trainer sprite was now that of an old man - the same as the one who teaches you how to catch Pokemon in Viridian City. Ghost appeared on the other side, along with the words “GHOST wants to fight!” You couldn’t use any items and you had no Pokemon. If you tried to run, you couldn’t escape. The only option was “FIGHT”.

Using FIGHT would immediately cause you to use Struggle. It didn’t affect Ghost, but it did chip off a bit of your own HP. When it was Ghost’s turn to attack, it would simply say “…” Eventually, when your HP reached a critical point, Ghost would finally use Curse.

The screen cut to black a final time.

Regardless of the buttons you press, the screen stays black. At this point, the only thing you can do is turn the Game Boy off. When turned back on, “NEW GAME” was the only option - the game erased your save data. I played through this hacked game many, many times. Every time, the game ended with this sequence. Several times, I didn’t use Ghost at all, even though he was impossible to remove from your party. In these cases, it did not show any Pokemon or trainers, and simply cut to the climactic battle with Ghost.

I’m not sure what motives were behind the creator of this hack. It wasn’t widely distributed, I assume, so it was presumably not for monetary gain. Even so, it was very well-done for a bootleg.

It seems he was trying to convey a message, though it seems I may be its sole receiver. I’m not entirely sure what the message was, though. The inevitability of death? The pointlessness of it? Perhaps he was simply trying to inject death and darkness into a children’s game. Regardless, this children’s game has made me think…and it has made me cry.