You may have already heard about the new trend of using Pokémon rom hacks in order to get access to previously unreleased Pokemon games. What are these hacks, you ask? How can they be used to get Pokemon games working on your Nintendo DS? Well, you’re not alone. A lot of people across the internet are asking these questions. But the truth is, they have a valid point.
Pokemon games, particularly the older versions, are copyright protected. Nintendo only allows licensed publishers to create ROM hacks for the game. This usually happens with very old games because it would be too expensive to port them to newer platforms. However, new versions of Pokemon games such as Diamond and FireRed will probably have some form of hack available by some unknown publisher. But what is a ROM hack?
Simply put, a ROM hack is an updated or patched version of an existing game. It’s essentially a “custom” release that enhances or improves upon the original game. While most hacks do just this – improve one aspect of the rom – there are some that go so far as to completely replace the original game. One example of this would be the Pokemon Diamond (version) which is a ROM hack of the classic Pokemon game. It changes every little detail, including every move and stat change possible.
So how can you tell if a game you want to try is hacks or not? For starters, look at the download screen. If it does not give any indication that it’s a hack, it’s probably a fake. There are some exceptions, but that’s rare. Most legitimate hacks will give a clear and precise link to the original game on their download page.
You should also beware of new downloads. Some websites are actually working from hacks instead of the official releases. If you’re planning on playing a particularly hacked game, make sure it’s not part of a trial offer or free gift. Those are most likely to have spyware or adware hidden within them. Instead, go for the official release if you’re planning on playing legitimate games. If you’re looking for an extremely fun game, however, anything goes.
Regardless, you’re going to spend some time looking through all the different hacks. While it can be fun to play a variety of them, in the end, only one of them will truly work for you. This means making sure you’re getting the best deal and that you’re compatible with the one you want to play before you download anything. Chances are, if you follow these steps, you’ll end up with a quality game that everyone can enjoy.