The secret Pokémon Mew was the subject of countless schoolyard myths, so any real way to get one -- easy or not -- is good news for Pokémon fans.
Many players grew up among rumors of finding the elusive 151st Pokémon, Mew, underneath a truck by a dock or by beating the Elite Four 1,000 times in a row in the original Pokémon Red and Pokémon Blue. What those players might not know is there actually is a fairly easy glitch that lets you catch a Mew in the wild in those games.
Of course the next goal is to get that glitched Mew into the most recent games, Pokémon Sun and Moon. And although the developers really don’t want you to, it turns out there is a way. It’s extremely complicated and kind of amazing.
Executing the glitch that lets you catch Mew in Pokémon Red/Blue/Yellow in the first place is by far the easiest part. The original guide to do it is here, and there are countless others on YouTube and elsewhere. It even works in the new downloadable versions of Red, Blue and Yellow Nintendo released on the 3DS eShop last year.
Once you have a Mew, it’s not as simple as transferring it to the newly updated Pokémon Bank application on your 3DS. Pokémon Bank finally lets you transfer Pokémon from Red/Blue/Yellow to Sun/Moon, true, but the servers try to block any Pokémon they detect as illegitimate — and considering the only way to get Mew has always been through special official events and distributions, a Mew caught in a random encounter on Route 8 at level 7 is nothing if not illegitimate.
Luckily there is a way to give that Mew all the traits that will let it pass through the system, including changing its original trainer name and ID number. Redditor TransgenderPride laid out the incredibly convoluted process, which involves “setting up arbitrary code execution” from within the game itself, in a post on the Pokémon subreddit.
“This method can be long and complicated if you’re unexperienced [sic] with Gen 1 glitches,” the post said. “Actually it’s pretty long either way. Be very careful. The ‘8F’ item will crash your game if you use it without very specific setups.”
It’s not easy or fast, but it seems to work. Now if only someone could figure out a way to transfer MissingNo into Sun and Moon so we could duplicate all the rare candies and masterballs we want.