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Hack Series: PocketRGB-EN - A Full Red, Green, and Blue Translation of the Original Pocket Monsters

9
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1
Years
  • Age 33
  • Seen May 19, 2023
Pocket Monsters - Red, Green, and Blue Version

Translation > Localization
pocketrgb-en is a Gen 1 disassembly, based on the Japanese releases titled 'Pocket Monsters' shortened to Pokémon.
The goal was to create the best 1 to 1 translation of the Japanese games that I could manage since none exist to date! Many have made "Uncensored" or what I like to consider improved "Localization's" where they restore the dialog mostly and really good ones like pokejp (the base pocketrgb-en is forked from) will also restore 99% of the visual elements except the Japanese version of the Logo. Now while these are nice I found they failed to give me any substantial sense of change to make me want to play them. As such I often felt like they should be paying more homage to the original source material if they really wanted to call themselves a translation.

Enter pocketrgb-en where I have taken the time to compare videos of the intro's and screenshots of the games to pixel perfectly match the colors and timing of the original Japanese games. As it came as a surprise but every ROM hack version of Green and even Bulbapedia's listed colors for Green were wrong presumably being best guesses rather then actually doing the math based on the output of a Japanese ROM. I also went on a massive bug hunt and solved a slew of common issues. With the cherry on top being my real pride of the project which is having replaced EVERY Pokémon, Character, Place and Badges name with translations of those used in the original releases.

If you have ever wanted to re-experience the joys and wonders of Gen 1 like you never have before join us in pocketrgb-en. Where you will relearn the names of your favourite Pokémon and Places. While fighting old rivals and gym leaders. All with new and unexpected names. Each interaction gains new life as you see the many references and details lost in even the localization of names!!


Screenshots

Restored Intro's
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Pocket Monsters - Red Version
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6VLVeyq.png


Pocket Monsters - Green Version
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Pocket Monsters - Blue Version
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Japanese Restoration:
* Completely Restored the Japanese releases Title Screens right down to Copyright dates and capitalization differences.
* Compared timing of Intro and Title to be frame accurate to the Japanese Releases
* Restored the title screen scrolling and Woosh sfx for R/G
* Restored the "Presents" Under the Game Freak logo.
* Restored Japanese SGB Palettes and Boarders (Slight tweaks: Blue - Aligned pokéball shadows to a centre glow rather then all over the place, Red - Kept the word "Red" centred rather then making it off centre like jp)
* Pocket Monsters Blue Version's wild Pokémon data has been edited to the Japanese release. Pocket Monsters Green Version uses US Blue's wild data.
* Pocket Monsters Red and Green now use the original Cerulean Cave layout.
* Pocket Monsters Red and Green use their Overworld and Pokémon graphics from their original release.
* Fixed Glitch where Haunters from in-game trades wouldn't evolve.
* Restores the original flashing lights for the moves "Thunderbolt" and "Hyper Beam".
* Restored the original map border layout from the Japanese versions.
* Pokédex rewritten using the official translation from Fire Red, but with restored references like Cloyster enduring a napalm bomb or Ponyta jumping the whole Tokyo Tower
* Censorship Removed (drunk Old Man, praying man at the museum, the Tunguska incident Scientist)...
* References removed from the official translation are Restored (Kanto map, Myracle-Cycle bike store, Pokémon mansion journals written in singular and its last entry)...
* Checked trainer lines and other text against Montblanc's Binary hack
* Gym leader names in the trainer card are restored.
* Restored text box boarders from Japanese releases
* Restored Flower animations for Red and Green
* Swap the trade Nidoran(m) to (f) and changed the nickname to the one used in the jp release (CHAPPY)
* All other trade Pokémon nicknames were restored to English translations of the ones used in the Japanese releases
* Blue version script fixed for the in-game trades (evolving Raichu, etc.)
* Pokémon version name in the credits have been replaced
* Aerodactyl and Kabutops fossil sprites Ported from the Japenese releases
* Replaced Character names with the Romaji names from Bulbapedia
* Replaced Player and Rival Name Options with JP equivalents
* Replaced all Town/ City Names and Slogans to match Translations of the JP Releases
* Replaced the badge names with their original color based names after seeing the connection to the JP slogans
* Replaced Team Rocket with Rocket Gang
* Replaced all 151 Pokémon + MissingNo. with the Trademarked / Hepburn Japanese names
* Replaced SAVE with REPORT to match how the Japanese games refered to it as writting in your Pokémon Report
* Replaced Move and Item names that lost part of their original meaning in localization
* Created a full DMG+Color conversion called PocketRGB-DX based on Jojobear13's shinpokered's implementation of Pokémon Yellow's hack of using SGB Palettes

Bug Fixes:
* All Multi-Player Battle Engine and Single-Player Battle Engine Bugs (except Unexpected Counter Damage) Listed on the pokered Bugs-and-Glitches Wiki are fixed
* Original wild Pokémon battle tile detection behaviour restored, removing the Old Man glitch that never happened in the Japanese releases
* All Game Engine Bugs Listed on the pokered Bugs-and-Glitches Wiki have been fixed except cut able trees growing back, the players ability to jump on npc's, and the ability to use a pokédoll on the ghost Marowak. As I consider these things that could possibly be intended design or interesting "features".
* All Graphic and Audio issues have also been addressed from the pokered Bugs-and-Glitches Wiki although I did not remove the Artacuno cry from the binoculars (I think a destorted cry is better then no cry at all)
* All Scripted Event Bugs are addressed except for facing the guard (Think of it like the player being fed up with being stopped haha I always have)
* The save system has also been adjusted to handle mid-save shutoff corrupted saves

Why make this?

In 1996, The original Pocket Monsters Red and Green were released. Later that year, Pocket Monsters Blue was released as well. In the west, 2 years later, Pokémon Red and Blue were released, using the updated Pocket Monsters Blue as the base, while using Red and Green's wild data. Meaning a Pokémon game with Pocket Monsters Blue's wild data was never released in the west. This caused a multitude of changes and a few errors in the International releases of Red and Blue. These Decomps serve to create English Versions of those Japanese releases, with names and imagery maintained.

Project History:

I started thinking about doing this "translation" myself when I found an extremely good ROM hack by ShaneM and later maintained by Montblanc. It took a lot of hunting but I found it's history through archive.org. On a closed forum I found posts where ShaneM made it clear they must have spoke Japanese. In one of their uploads they eve references getting the Japanese version of green and how they went through it and red side by side to compare the original localization. After which he fixed all the censoring and other missing content. This made their ROM my gold standard for a 1 to 1 translation of the dialog. Unfortunately they kept the Pokémon logo and all the North American names. I wanted Dr. Okido starting our Japanese adventure not some American named after a tree (love you Prof Oak!).

Later as I struggled to binary hack these changes in, Anon822 on these forum pointed me towards pokejp!! I immediately forked it and started pocketrgb-en with the goal of comparing pokejp to ShaneM and Montblanc's work to do my best to create a "translation" that feels less like a localization. Masaru2's work has been great but I was surprised no one had made a version of RGB with Japanese names. Pokejp changes a lot of the text and pokédex entries so that saved me a lot of work and allows me to just focus on comparing the final text from both. After which I made a few executive decisions and combined the two usually favouring the ROM hax translation with some slight changes to fit the text boxes better. Next before I did the main work of changing all the names I took the time to smash every known bug I could.

The last step came as I took on what I though was going to be the hardest work, changing every name, and reference to each name, to versions of the Japanese equivalents. This was a lot easier then I expected likely do to a few good spreadsheets I made along the way but resulted in something I'm extremely proud of. I was able to swap every Pokémon, Character, Place and Badges name to match either official Japanese trademarks or translations.

This will be the closest thing to a "translation", with a side of bug fixes, that I can manage as I do not speak Japanese. I was just dying to re-experience this classic games with a new perspective and I'm happy I made these as I've learned a lot along the way about the history and ideas behind these games before they every became the unstoppable force they are today! If you are interested in some of that early history and are curious why it might be so interesting to play with the original names and art I think you may enjoy this unaffiliated but quite informative look at the early days of Red and Green that fell across my feed as I wrapped up the first release. (How Pokémon Red & Blue Were Made By: ThatGuyGlen).

Credits

* Masaru2 for his hand in the majority of the original work in his fork of MoriyaFaith's pokejp project
* Montblanc and ShaneM for their ROM hacks that got me trying to do this and have been a constant reference
* pokered for serving as a base disassembly with a detailed Bugs list
* Alchav's fork of pokered, which allowed usage of the RG sprites
* Rangi42 for creating Tilemap Studio and Polished Map, allowing for editing of tilemaps, Cerulean Cave and the Japanese Map Border Layout
* Satomew for fixing the 2x2 tile glitch
* Jojobear13 for the trainer card restoration code, the R/G Shooting Star SFX code, Counter shenanigans Fix and Exp All Fixes


Downloads
PocketRGB-EN is a 1 to 1 of the Japanese games while PocketRGB-DX uses SGB Palettes on Gameboy Color just like Pokémon Yellow (Fun fact none of the JP Gen 1 games originally had color not even their version of Yellow)


To play pocketrgb-en, download the .bps patch files from the direct links above or from the Github Releases page, and use a tool like Lunar IPS (for Windows), Rompatcher.js, MultiPatch (for OS X), or UniPatcher (for Android) to apply the patch to the correct ROM.

These are the ROMs you should use for each version:

For Pocket Red - Pokemon - Red Version (USA, Europe) (SGB Enhanced) sha1: EA9BCAE617FDF159B045185467AE58B2E4A48B9A

For Pocket Green and Blue - Pokemon - Blue Version (USA, Europe) (SGB Enhanced) sha1: D7037C83E1AE5B39BDE3C30787637BA1D4C48CE2

Or the ROMs made by the pokered project as they have the same hash.
 
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9
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1
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  • Age 33
  • Seen May 19, 2023
Just updated the download buttons with v1.0.1 as I was able to find some quick text issues running into different boarders

-The last letters of Ohkido's Parcel ran into the frame of the item menu. (now called OHKIDO PARCEL, also fixed other items that would of had the same issue. Excuse the few with no spaces or a missing letter I found it was the best way not to have the names exceed the frame but still read with the same intention,
-Onisuzume (spearow) pokedex entry ran into the boarder when Parrot Mimicry looped to a new line (the wording and spacing has been tweaked)
-MT.Otsukimi Ran over the map boarder and did not reload that part leaving a MI on screen (added a new line after MT.)
-Overwriting a save file had a line of dialog that ran 3 letters 2 long ending up behind the arrow and over the frame.
 

Dark

SW-8589-1512-3501
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8
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  • Age 37
  • Seen Feb 24, 2024
Looking good, all definitely give this a try wen complete. Good luck
 
9
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1
Years
  • Age 33
  • Seen May 19, 2023
Ah but the web patcher had screwed up the red and green patches on both for some reason apologies anyone who tried those!
 
9
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  • Age 33
  • Seen May 19, 2023
Did you fix them?

Yes the uploades have been replaced with working patches. I didn't change the version number as I didn't change the roms it just appears the patcher was mad at red and green the other night haha I've switched to a local patcher instead to hopefully avoid the same issue in the future.
 
1
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341
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  • Age 28
  • Seen Mar 30, 2023
Hello everyone, is there an emulator for iPhones? Very interested in playing these and looking for help, thanks much.
 
9
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1
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  • Age 33
  • Seen May 19, 2023
Ordered some flash carts and shells from InsideGadget so I thought I'd make some labels up to send to an etsy seller who makes holo labels. Incase anyone else enjoys these enough to do the same I figured I'd share them!! Having grown up in Canada I'm use to the grey bars and they look pretty slick on a holo lens so I added them, swapped the Japanese character for each color with EN or DX since North American Pokemon game never said the version name on the label anyways.

Pocket%20Red%20Label.png
Pocket%20Green%20Label.png
Pocket%20Blue%20Label.png


Pocket%20Red%20DX%20Label.png
Pocket%20Green%20DX%20Label.png
Pocket%20Blue%20DX%20Label.png
 
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534
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  • Age 37
  • Seen yesterday
Based and OCD-pilled. I'll make a few tweaks to my own -jp builds based on your work for the sake of correctness.
 
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  • Age 32
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Image URL: https://i.ibb.co/P9pQnhR/20230621-204923.jpg (expires in 1 month) - Not embedding the image because when I did that, it took up the entire page and wasn't resized to fit here at all.

Hi. Just got this patch today. Found a typo already (in the image). Made an account on here just to post this, haha. Have a great day. Also, *please* tell me a Gen 2 replica of this is in the works?
 
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Any chance of making a 151 version? You know, a version that makes catching all 151 Pokemon Possible without trading?
 
1
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  • Age 45
  • Seen Jul 17, 2023
Wow this is amazing, years waiting for something like this! I hope one day to see a Spanish version with the original names like this one and from more generations, thank you very much!
 
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179
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  • Age 27
  • Seen Aug 31, 2023
I like what you did here, man. A near-accurate
translation for the original JP versions of Pocket
Monsters R/G/B. By the way, is there a possibility on making an improved version of the translations to be more accurate to the original in the future? Other
than that, Great Work here!
 
1
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171
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  • Age 26
  • Seen Nov 21, 2023
This is exactly the kind of thing I have been waiting for for over a decade. However what sours it for me is the bug fixes(Minus the ones that make it more like the Japanese release like the encounter tile behavior, I'm all for stuff like that). I would much prefer everything, warts and all, from the original be intact. It's a very odd conflict of interest to put so much effort into making it authentic but then immediately invalidate it by changing things like this.

If a version that doesn't include bug fixes could be made available, I would definitely appreciate it as would other people Im sure. Also the new save format is unnecessary and simply inconvenient. I don't think this needed to be changed and all it does is break compatibility with PkHex and other tools.

I also found after playing all 3 of these through this could use a second pass quality wise, I found several instances of dialogue not matching the new name changes, some of the Japanese Pokemon names are simply incorrect(Venonat for example is Kongpang but this really should be just Konpan as there is no G グ sound whatsoever in the Katakana コンパン Im assuming this name came from Bulbapedia which incorrectly romanizes many of the names) all on top of new bugs such as encountering Level 0 Nidorans in the area above Vermillion city and other things that just look bad like dialogue going outside the border and IAI CUT also going outside the border in the submenu.

Overall this is a solid attempt but I will continue waiting for a true translation of the original Japanese roms with their bespoke codebase rather these frankensteined romhacks of the US games.
 
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13
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What about original glitches from Japanese releases? They work?
 
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I hope this hack gets more attention, and maybe someday, we'll get an ACTUAL translation of the Japanese ROMs in English (and not hacks of the English ones to have the dialogue match the Japanese ones if they were in English). Cause believe me, beimg able to mess with the glitchyness of Pocket Monsters Midori in the language I understand, and also without it being abbreviated or shortened like all the bootleg translations or something like Vietnamese Crystal... would be sweet!
 
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  • Seen Jan 18, 2024
I hope this hack gets more attention, and maybe someday, we'll get an ACTUAL translation of the Japanese ROMs in English (and not hacks of the English ones to have the dialogue match the Japanese ones if they were in English). Cause believe me, beimg able to mess with the glitchyness of Pocket Monsters Midori in the language I understand, and also without it being abbreviated or shortened like all the bootleg translations or something like Vietnamese Crystal... would be sweet!
I was trying to translate Gen 1 but seems like someone already did before me. Im thinking about gen2 and gen3 (definetly plan gen3 since tools out there) if people interested we may even team up
 
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