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Nightmare Fuel / Pokémon Glitches

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Imagine surfing up and down the shore of an island and then running into this thing.
Glitch Pokémon are Pokémon that manifest through errors in the game's programming. The stuff they do to your file is all kinds of messed up.

  • Many players don't ever want to surf up and down the eastern shores of Cinnabar Island or Seafoam Island in any version of Pokémon, due to the glitch "MissingNo." and its "twin" 'M from Pokémon Red and Blue, who look like garbled towers of pixels and have the potential to corrupt game data (even if thankfully in practice they only ever effect the sprite data, which can easily be fixed, and the Hall of Fame, their effects on which can be hilarious). Their appearance causes the battle music to slow down or drop tracks, and the text also becomes screwed up because these Pokémon have moves whose names seem to go on forever (or really weird names like "TM20"). However, these two glitch Pokémon do not corrupt save files (again apart from the useless Hall of Fame data), unlike some others.
    • Missingno's most famous appearance, which 'M also typically takes, is a bunch of pixels shaped like a backwards L. More people are scared by what a glitch Pokémon does than by what it looks like, but Missingno also occasionally takes the shape of a Lavender Town ghost (Gastly and Haunter sans Silph Scope), a hollow shell of a Kabutops that hasn't been revived, or the skeleton of an Aerodactyl that hasn't been revived.
    • Missingno's stats imply he's almost as tall as Wailord (the biggest one), and heavier than Celesteela (the heaviest one). However, this is in the American version; in the Japanese version of Pokémon Blue, where Missingno. has a filler Pokédex entry, its height and weight are a much more reasonable 1 meter and 10 kilograms (3.2 feet and 22 pounds).
    • It's also worth noting that, while Missingno is typically harmless aside from glitching the Hall of Fame, 'M is a rather trickier beast. Usually it's fine, but under certain conditions it can become something truly horrifying:
      • If it's level 0, and you send it to your PC, it destroys everything the trainer knows and loves just by existing (or more specifically, by corrupting the PC and making it inaccessible).
      • If it uses an upside down MissingNo. sprite, it can crash the game.note 
      • And if it looks like a Charizard...well, see below for that particular iteration, which really does merit its own entry.
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  • Pokémon Yellow has its own version of MissingNo, which is not as benign a glitch as the Pokémon Red and Blue counterpart. Its 'battle music' is only dead static, assuming it fights you instead of just making a horrifying noise and crashing the game. It can also cause the player character to disappear with clones of him flying through the air,.
  • Another Yellow glitch with a similar effect to the Yellow MissingNo. is "Female Symbol", whose name is just the symbol for "female" and some glitched characters. Its encounter is just like the above scenario, except this time the Eldritch Abomination screams at the player, freezes the game and kick-starts a creepy remix of what appear to be multiple different musical tracks from Lavender Town, the Team Rocket hideout, and other places in RBY with creepy/scary music. Have a listen. It can replace the battle music with never-ending glitchy sounds that don't allow its cry (which is identical to Raticate's) to play, effectively locking up the game.
  • Another unsettling thing found in the first generation is Glitch City, a garbled mess of pixels which, if traveled into too far, will cause the screen to freak out and the game to freeze. For a 10-year-old trainer (as in, the in-game character), finding himself in Glitch City would be horrifying by itself; however, as the player stares at it more and more, it becomes obvious that the whole place simply should not be. To escape you must Fly, Dig, Teleport, or fall in battle.
  • While thankfully only accessible with a Gameshark, one little thing makes the GSC version of Glitch City even worse. A black-and-white woman (resembling a ghost) will sometimes be waiting for the player there. Walking towards her results in her attacking, playing the Burned Tower music when she does. Trying to battle her will only result in madness. Additionally, there's unused text in Gold and Silver suggesting somebody's daughter going missing in the Burned Tower. Amongst the mess of destroyed buildings and mangled data, she waits, so close to being intact yet so far away...
    • The madness continues with her interactions changing depending on what you have in your team or where you approach, as well as a bizarre "Quest" in glitch city where you happen to pick up a poison barb where her behavior also noticeably changes. Engaging her in battle properly requires using a Gameshark to give her a valid trainer class as well as stopping the early game auto-input. This reveals she has the name and team of Ace Trainer Cara from the Dragon's Den, which either debunks the possibility of this being a removed character or just raising more questions. all of this can be seen in this video.
  • Meeting not just Missingno and Pokémon over level 100, but glitched trainers as well (if one used grammatic symbols in the 3rd, 5th, or 7th part of their name) is another freaky experience. Example: a Channeller outside Cinnabar Island whose Pokémon were a mess of glitched names and graphics. The Pokémon also glitched the background music into a never-ending stream of randomly distorted sound effects. Also, the glitched trainers neither said anything nor rewarded money when defeated.
  • 4.4 is a Glitch Pokémon who initiates battle with the Critical Annoyance low health siren. Said music begins as soon as the Wild Pokémon Battle music starts and doesn't stop until the Pokémon appears, where it's replaced with a discordant glitchy sound that sounds like a mix of another Pokémon's cry and a telephone ringing, then freezes the game.
  • Hacking the life out of a older game can cause it to retaliate. When cheats are forced upon the game, it can still works until players "cross the line" and get to Pallet Town: then the screen freaks out alongside everything else until it turns into a pattern of white and black stripes and freezes.
  • The Glitch Pokémon named h POKé. It is harmless by itself, but what is creepy is its height and weight: a mess of garbled pixels, over 80 feet tall and 3 tons heavy.note  The garbled pixels are a result of the game trying to display more digits than it can display, meaning it's even bigger than that.
  • 3TrainerPOKé in Pokémon Yellow Version, which amongst other things can really mess up the appearance of the player's Pikachu.
  • There is one glitch in Generation 4 where when using the walk-through-walls with Action Replay and walk up through the Elite 4 blackness: this eventually results in the player arriving at Floarama Meadows. Trying to backtrack result in the player eternally stuck in the Elite Four door.
  • Third Gen (Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald) has the Bad EGG (sic), which may be the game punishing the player for cheating. To elaborate, its a glitched Pokémon egg that shows up when one misuses a Gameshark or otherwise screws with the game data. It can simply appear in an encounter as a "Not recorded yet" Pokédex question mark with the name ??? and caught as a bad egg, or have more malicious effects like turning one of your Pokémon in your current party into one that can not be removed, or worse, replacing the first Pokémon in your active box with a Bad EGG (as well as any others you try to replace it with). When hatching, it turns into another Bad EGG, then the game freezes, possibly corrupting the save file as it does.
    • A similar, but different, glitch from Generation II is the Glitch Egg. Acquired from doing the Celebi egg glitch improperly, the Glitch Egg appears to be nothing more than a normal egg; however, it hatches into another egg. And will continue an indefinite cycle of hatching into another egg forever. While Glitch Egg itself is harmless (other than hatching into itself and having a badly garbled Pokédex entry), it can be quite horrific for a player attempting the Celebi egg glitch, as the only way to truly know if the glitch was successful is for the egg to hatch. In Crystalnote , the Glitch Egg at 6146.5lbsnote . But it's remarkably small for its mass, at only 22 inchesnote .
    • In Pokémon X and Y, we get a lovely crossbreed of a Bad Egg, and 'M: the Mystery Egg. Like the regular Bad Egg, Mystery Egg doesn't hatch. It was apparently laid at 0/0/0000. The Mystery Egg, like a Lv. 0 'M, corrupts the box it's in, taking all the Pokémon in there with it.
      • Even better, nobody knows what causes it. Thankfully, it seems to be an extremely rare glitch, but it's still a terrifying possibility that you may turn your game on one day only to find your Pokémon being slowly devoured by this... thing.
  • The ZZAZZ glitch. Easily the most dangerous glitch in the entire series, it happens if you try to use the Ditto Glitch with a Special stat of 200 (but only a specific roster) and 251 to 255 (Bar 253, which just freezes the game). The glitch trainer that comes out really breaks the game's reality down, to say the least. It's also Nightmare Fuel for the game itself as all of this happens because it gets crazy upon noticing the glitch trainer's reward money. Some of its effects include:
    • It gets rid of the in-battle music and replaces the cries with late-arriving, grating noises. In addition, it makes the sprites of almost anything become garbage. (Also known as the "TMTRAINER effect")
    • All Pokémon in the party (Bar the third and sixth) become level 153 Bulbasaurs, and all six get three of their moves replaced by Explosion.
    • It also changes the player's name to ZZDZZAZZ4ZZ Z ZIZZ9ZZ[box]ZZnote . This means all your Pokémon are treated as outsiders, and all your level 153 Bulbasaur will disobey you. Your party also becomes corrupted, and seeing it freezes the game, but this can be solved by depositing your first Pokémon.
      • Furthermore, if your original name was not either two or five characters long, there's a great chance saving under the effects of the glitch (that don't wear out if you do that) will make the game think there is no saved game at all.
    • If you try to battle the glitch trainer, the game crashes. The only way to get past it is by using an item that does not open your party screen.
    • When you get past it, you can battle other trainers... which happen to look just like Red, but have the same name and party as the glitch trainer seen above. You can battle that trainer, but it's completely Unwinnable, either through Pokémon with infinite HP, having over six Pokémon in the party, triggering another battle as soon as they are beaten (With an even more corrupted party), or by sending out a level 147 Charizard that freezes the game in the first turn.
    • It's also been stated that it can even corrupt a cartridge's battery under certain circumstances, making the game literally unplayable.
  • Thanks to a certain glitch, the real reason why trainers need Pokémon before going into the tall grass is revealed: this is why. Based on the picture, a headless Pidgeotto attacks and morphs the player character itself into a shapeless mass of pixels, taking the interface with it.
  • A few glitch Pokémon have stats high enough to make even Arceus's pale in insignificance. An example is the terrifyingly powerful PokéWTrainer: adjusting the stats to current scalesnote , it effectively has a 924 base stat total. By comparison, Arceus has 720, so even if Arceus were to gain a Mega Evolution it would still not reach PokéWTrainer. It's not lacking in STAB moves to abuse it with either.
  • Another example is ゥ- xゥ,, a Normal-Glitch type with a purple color and a cry slightly resembling Celebi's. It has a 827 stat total on the modern scale, which is still better than Arceus! It also is much safer to use, because PokéWtrainer can cause crashes if its front sprite is displayed, whereas X ゥ- xゥ, will never cause crashes and never tries to learn any volatile glitch moves such as Super Glitch.
  • There is a glitchy creature in Pokémon Red and Blue that looks like Charizard, but behaves like a horrifying glitch. Because of this, it has earned the nickname "Charizard 'M", often referred to as "The Final Boss of Pokémon". It occupies the hex slot FF, which is the domain of the "cancel" button. This means it cancels everything it comes into contact with. If you store it in the PC, all your Pokémon will disappear. If you talk to Nurse Joy, the conversation will immediately end so you can't heal your Pokémon. It's nothing short of the embodiment of nothingness. If that weren't enough, battling it results in the TMTRAINER effect, and it has 65,535 hit points, so there is no way that the player could actually beat it. To really drive the point home, the FF index slot is also occupied by ZZAZZ. The game can't start a Trainer battle within a Trainer battle, so it corrupts data that is already corrupt. Worse still, if you manage to get one of these abominationsnote , and if it's sent out in battle or stored in the PC, the Charizard 'M can turn your Pokémon into even more Charizard 'Ms.
  • Hackers often put up otherwise impossible Pokémon on the GTS, a standard annoyance for legitimate players. Generation VI took this up a notch, as many player sprites can also be hacked, resulting in many who have no face, just a floating pair of eyes. Said hackers would also include cryptic messages, which may include nonstandard characters that may even break out of the text box. On the bright side, this makes it easier to locate obviously hacked Pokémon and avoid a corrupted game, but seeing headless trainers while innocently hunting for trades is deeply unsettling.


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