Video Game / Pokémon Brown and Prism

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Pokémon Brown and Pokémon Prism are two huge ROMHacks of Pokémon games by KoolBoyMan, based on Pokémon Red and Pokémon Crystal, respectively. They are by far among the most well-known Pokémon hacks out there (they appear on The Other Wiki, and Bulbapedia) and that's not without good reason. They are by far the most edited Pokémon hacks out there, with only the sprites and Pokémon themselves the same.

Prism works as a "sequel" to Brown, including more features and better graphics. Both games can be linked to each other, which allows the player to exchange Pokémon or battle.

These hacks add two new continents, a new story, improved graphics, all the Pokémon up to Generation IV, Pokémon-only segments (Prism only), and a frickin' awesome new soundtrack. (Again, Prism only)

While Brown was finished in 2009 (although an update was released in 2014), Prism nearly finished development (several working betas can be downloaded). Prism in a near-complete form premiered on Twitch Plays Pokémon but was unfortunately Cease and Desisted by Nintendo five days before it was set to release (however, the release build and source code were both leaked on 4chan's /v/ and /vp/ boards within 24 hours of the C&D). There is another sequel, called Rijon Adventures, which was be modified from Pokémon FireRed, and currently places itself 20 years after Brown's events - however, the conditions of the C&D means that production has ceased.

If you are curious, there is a Let's Play of Brown here. All games cannot be obtained on the original website anymore, but a cursory Google can lead you to the patches.


Tropes used in multiple games:

  • Balance Buff: Many Pokemon have been enhanced by the new type combinations they've received, including Wigglytuff's new Sound-based offense and Weezing's boosted resistance to Fighting- and Bug-type moves.
  • Big Boo's Haunt/Creepy Cemetery: The Haunted Forest north of Botan City houses a graveyard with Ghost-type Pokemon. Prism adds a Haunted House that contains more types of Pokemon, including a Gengar that sends the player off into a Dream Sequence.
  • Boss in Mook Clothing: These trainers often appear in optional endgame dungeons, such as the trainers with level 70+ Pokemon the trainer is required to beat before they can reach Moltres/Entei. However, Prism at least has one that appears much earlier in the game: a Milotic-welding fisherman that's required to fight before continuing.
  • Disc One Nuke: Averted with the traditional example of Magikarp, in which they couldn't be captured until much later than they would be in the main games.
  • Like Cannot Cut Like: Played very much straight with the Sound-type, which has no effect on itself.
  • Luck-Based Mission: The casinos make a return in these games. Prism also introduces a whole-new Pachisi board game, where players are at the mercy of the dice roll that determines whether or not they make it to the end of the board.
  • Mutual Disadvantage: Fire and Gas types are super-effective towards each other.
  • Nerf: While not as common as the Pokemon that have been boosted by the new typings, there have been those that have been negatively impacted by them. Most notably, the Gastly, Beldum, and Bronzor lines have all developed 4x weaknesses to Sound-type moves.
  • Noob Cave: Both games have the player begin their quest in a cave. Brown has Merson Cave, the tunnel that links Gravel Town to Merson City; while Prism throws the player in the middle of Acqua Mines, where they first meet their Larvitar.
  • Punny Name: The Rijon region.

Tropes used in Brown:

  • Artistic License – Religion: A miner does the main character a solid by giving him a certain item, but then specifies he's doing so for the good karma because he's a Buddhist. Now, a Hindu might want good karma, but a Buddhist's main goal is to escape the cycle of karma as a whole, because all karma is bad.
  • Bonus Boss: The Pallet Ranger at the end of the Bonus Dungeon, with a team of Level 100 Pokemon. After beating him, the game informs you that you have basically completed everything.
  • Call Forward: Certain Pallet Rangers cameo in the end stages of the game.
  • The Cameo: A couple of significant individuals (including Giovanni), and even a place - you can visit Azalea Town (Rijon is south of it), but not the rest of Johto since Azalea was sealed off by an earthquake.
  • The Missingno.: While the hacker did his best to keep the actual trope namer from showing up throughout the course of the game, it is still affectionately parodied in one dungeon. An (intentionally) glitched looking Hypno sprite is used in place of the ghosts that appeared in Pokémon Tower. They still terrify your Pokémon, but by spouting garbled nonsense instead of demands for you to leave.
  • Obvious Rule Patch: New types were added to better balance the game, including the Dark type to counter Psychics as in all subsequent generations, and even a new type that is weak against Normal moves.
  • Peninsula of Power Leveling: There is one accessible even before the first Gym, a small single patch of tall grass inside a town with level 17 to 20 Pokémon (some rare ones like Pikachu, Hitmonlee and Hitmonchan), conveniently in the front of a Pokémon Center.
  • Truth in Television: Although it's most likely a coincidence, there is, in fact, a real Castro Valley.

Tropes used in Prism:

  • And Now for Someone Completely Different: As mentioned above, you can walk around the overworld as individual Pokémon in a few areas.
  • Animal Talk: A Pokémon's speech is translated to perfect English if you talk to them as a Pokémon (some parts of the game let you walk one of your party members around the overworld).
  • Bathos: The Palette Patrollers have personalities ranging from petty criminals to ambitious Well Intentioned Extremists, not unlike the other criminal organizations in the Pokémon universe. However, all of them are wearing ridiculous Power Rangers-esque body suits, despite the leader insisting it's actually traditional Naljo garb.
  • Bookends: After beating the Champion, there's another campsite scene. This time with both your mother and Lance, your father. Also, the first gym and the final postgame gym are both Fire-type.
  • Boss Rush: The eighth gym has the player rematch against four of the Naljo gym leaders before facing off against the Climax Boss.
  • The Call Knows Where You Live: Or at least where you're camping. When you leave to get firewood, there's a landslide, and you can't get back. Then you ride a minecart offered by a suspicious man in a tunnel, and it breaks, trapping you alone in a cave. But then you run into a Larvitar blocking your path; it jumps into a Pokéball and comes along on your adventure.
  • Captain Ersatz: The Pallet Patrollers are very blatant Power Rangers knockoffs, complete with an 8-bit rendition of the Power Rangers theme as their encounter music. One Patroller wishes they could be called the Prism Rangers, and laments that another team beat them to the name.
  • Character Development: Various characters undergo this. Some antagonistic characters have undergone a Heel–Face Turn after thinking about their wrongdoings in Saxifrage Island, while others have abandoned their original goals in favor of other means. Even the player character has their moments when their reverence for Pokemon is tested by the sage in Magikarp Caverns, and later when a Gengar throws them into a Dream Sequence that enlightens them about their importance to the Naljo region.
  • Charles Atlas Superpower/Crazy Survivalist: Andre and his followers are capable of building and destroying architectural structure (burrows, bridges; etc.) with their bare hands. This is partly motivated by their vehement disdain towards technology, as they believe that it will leave society unprepared for a collapse in civilization.
  • Climax Boss: The eighth gym leader, Steel-type user Bruce, is presented as this. The first room emphasizes this with the title theme playing in the background instead of the usual gym theme. The lower level has the player solving puzzles based on past places, and engaging in a Boss Rush with some of the previous gym leaders before going up against the final Naljo leader himself.
  • Colorful Theme Naming: The Palette Patrollers are named after different colors, and the Pokémon they use (including the Eeveelutions) are in the same color group the Pallet Patroller using them is.
  • Darker and Edgier:
    • Earlier builds have gone this route: characters swear readily, the rival is first encountered while he is torturing a Bagon, the co-leader of the Quirky Mini Boss Squad threatens to kill the player character when their Pokémon aren't around to protect them, and some characters are just gratuitously obnoxious and nasty. All of this is toned down in the 0.91 build, which brings the tone closer to that of an actual Pokemon game.
    • The Gas-type attacks, however, still have names like "Sarin", "Mustard Gas", and "Lewisite". As one beta tester put it:
      VorpalNorman: Are all the Gas-type attacks war crimes?
  • Establishing Character Moment: The rival forcing a terrified Bagon to fight for its life sets the tone for his character very firmly.
  • Foreshadowing: One of the available visuals for a male player character bear a close resemblance to kantonian Elite Four's Lance. Hardly a coincidence, since he's the player's father.
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy: Even after you're released from prison, certain guards will still call you a prisoner and throw you back in your unlocked cell if you try to enter a restricted area. None of the guards will stop you from releasing other prisoners, or capturing incarcerated Pokémon.
  • Guest-Star Party Member: A Caterpie joins the player briefly to meet back up with his mother as a shout out to the tutorial stage of the first Mystery Dungeon game.
  • Infinity–1 Sword: You begin the game with the first stage of a pseudo-legendary.
  • Interchangeable Antimatter Keys: The "cage key" item.
  • Knife Nut: This installment's rival, who employs a pocket knife for torturing Pokémon, and is on the search for monsters well suited to cutting and killing people (and Pokémon). Yet, most of his early team can learn only blunt attacks as opposed to slashing ones.
  • Leet Lingo: Naljo's professor spoke in this in one of the earlier builds. Fortunately, this was averted by the time the hack got leaked.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: The protagonist's father is Lance, the league champion. There's a little family reunion scene after you beat him.
  • Meta Guy: Edison. Before his gym battle, he tells the player that the Pokemon Prism universe "isn't some fictional anime", making a reference to the Pokémon anime without showing any actual awareness of said series (see Take That!). Later at the Boss Rush, he describes how he meticulously studied your battle style and sought to counter it, something that any Genre Savvy boss character would (attempt to) do.
  • The Missingno.: Phancero is based on the trope namer, to the point it's animation briefly turns into Missingno. It's encountered in the "glitch" city from the original games, and is part flying, in reference to Missingno being bird type.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: The "Boxart" for Prism depicts Mega Tyranitar yet Mega Evolution is not possible. It could however have been a planned mechanic had the project still been allowed to be worked on.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: Quite literally with Edison, whom describes having his dreams being eaten by a Gengar (the same one that sent the player character in their own plot-significant Dream Sequence) as "the most pleasant dream."
  • No OSHA Compliance: Justified with the sixth gym, which houses Gas-type trainers. Also deconstructed, as the toxic fumes within have caused the trainers to become lethargic and dim-witted.
  • No Smoking: Averted, unlike the main series, as there is a cigarette item that can be held to increase the power of Gas-type moves. The Black Ranger was also a smoker in earlier builds (and also gave you the item himself).
  • Original Generation: The game has five original "Fakemon" legendaries that can be encountered and caught.
  • Outside-the-Box Tactic: While Andre puts up a fierce fight in his own right, neither his Machoke nor Machamp can touch Ghost-type Pokemon at all.
  • Patchwork Map: Justified, as the Naljo region is ruled by elemental guardians that impact its climate and geology. The extreme climate variations are frequently mentioned by Naljo locals.
  • Power-Up Letdown:
    • Some of the elemental rings boost a certain stat while reducing accuracy. While this stat wouldn't be as necessary to stall-based Pokemon, one of the rings boosts special attack, making it useful only to those that can learn the Always Accurate Attack Aura Sphere.
    • While the move tutor often gives Pokemon useful moves they wouldn't otherwise be able to learn, sometimes they're either lackluster or don't fit the needs of those Pokemon.
  • Quirky Mini Boss Squad: The Pallet Patrollers.
  • Raised By Machamps: This was Andre's upbringing, and is also why he's both super-strong and very firmly technophobic.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here!: Brooklyn's Totodile pulls this off twice, the first time being it runs away to Laurel Forest just to get away from the ever-so-irritating Brooklyn, something Totodile itself tells the protagonists' Pokemon upon first meeting it, and after Brooklyn has been defeated for her badge. It is because of how annoying Brooklyn is that her Totodile decides to join the protagonist, and they never say a word about where Totodile is.
  • Take That!: After allowing Edison to dream again, he tells you:
    "Well, this isn't some fictional anime, so I can't just give you my badge."Explanation 
  • Take Your Time: Taken to a ludicrous degree with the Naljo Guardians. Even though the release of Varaneous by the Palette Patrol is supposed to threaten Naljo with complete annihilation, the player can ignore all of the Guardians, and the region will remain as it was since the player first arrived there.
  • Took A Level In Jerk Ass: Every other NPC in the Naljo region, due to some unknown apparently supernatural influence spreading throughout the area.
  • Totally Radical: Josiah, leader of the first gym. He lapses out of his 90's lingo when he's explaining what the TM that he gives out does.
  • Virtual Paper Doll: On top of defining a gender, the sprite of the player character and its palette can be modified into a wide variety of colors.
  • Walking Spoiler: Subverted with KoolBoyMan's first Fakemon character, Prismeon. It was supposed to be a well-hidden original addition to the Eeveelution line, but was scrapped some time before the 0.91 build.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not for Kids?: In-Universe. An NPC at Spurge City Mall mentions that Pokémon Quartz has a lot of profanity it in despite being rated E for Everyone - A nod towards the hack's prominence as a bootleg cart, with the box falsely claiming it to be given that rating.

Tropes used in Rijon Adventures:

  • Quietly Performing Sister Show: A given considering that Brown and Prism are two of the most critically acclaimed Pokemon ROM hacks ever. While it doesn't have the same degree of innovation as the aforementioned games, it's still held in high regard in its own right.

Alternative Title(s): Pokemon Brown, Pokemon Prism, Pokemon Brown And Prism

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