Wild MISSINGNO. appeared!
'Missingno. glitch' redirects here, for the glitch Pokémon or 'placeholder entry', see Missingno.
The old man trick (also known as the Missingno. glitch, although Missingno. is not the only Pokémon that can be encountered using this trick) is a well-known derivative of the left-facing shore tile glitch in Pokémon Red and Blue, that allows one to capture high-level or glitch Pokémon, based on the player's name, as well as glitch Trainers.
It is performed by watching the old man of Viridian City's catching demonstration, using Fly to go to Cinnabar Island or Fuchsia City and then surfing on one of the following 'left-facing shore tiles':
The previous Pokémon list glitch seemingly does not exist in all the Japanese versions, or Pokémon Yellow, as the tiles east of Cinnabar Island and east of the Seafoam Islands cave apparently never give wild Pokémon.
This glitch was partially fixed in the Italian and Spanish versions of Red and Blue, as Tentacool appear if the player surfs on a left-facing shore tile. This can be worked around with by walking on the tiles; not surfing, by using the walk through walls trick (ledge method); which is a derivative of the Safari Zone exit glitch.
- A Red or Blue Version Pokémon game that has been played up to Cinnabar Island or Seafoam Islands.
- A Pokémon that knows Fly.
- A Pokémon that knows Surf.
1. Talk to the Old Man at Viridian City who shows you how to catch Pokémon. Say no to his question and watch his demonstration.
2. Fly to Cinnabar Island or Fuchsia City. Do not leave Viridian City before doing this.
3. If you chose Cinnabar Island, Surf along the eastern coast until you encounter a wild Pokémon. If you chose Fuchsia City, go to the shore tiles right of the east-most Seafoam Islands cave.
If using a Spanish or Italian version of Red/Blue, remember to walk across the coast using any version of the walk through walls glitch, instead of surfing on it, or you'll only get wild Tentacool.
The old man trick is a combination of two events.
- In English and European versions, surfing (or walking on, if necessary) on one of the shore tiles described in the introduction of this article brings up the previous list of Pokémon in the grass.
- The player's name is temporarily changed to "OLD MAN" during the old man's catching demonstration, and then changed back to what it was before. In the process, the player's name is stored in memory starting from the 'grass encounter rate' memory address, at $D887. After the battle ends, the value at $D887 is changed back to normal, but what follows it (grass Pokémon and level data) starting from $D888 is not.
Saving the player's name here would normally not be a problem, due to the data being updated when you enter a new route, but it is not updated when flying to Cinnabar Island or Fuchsia City, and the first event enables the 'name data Pokémon' to be encountered.
In at least the English version of Pokémon Red and Blue, the encounters on the left-facing shore tiles work as such:
- The second, fourth, sixth, eighth and tenth characters determine the level of a Pokémon. (the identifier of the letter is used)
- The third, fifth, seventh, ninth and eleventh characters determine the type of Pokémon species or Trainer for values greater than 199. (the identifier of the letter is used)
The characters are case-sensitive.
The name 'Abwayax' would give a level 'b' (161) Kabutops Fossil Missingno. ('w', hex:B6), a level 'a' (160) Ghost Missingno. ('y', hex:B8), a level 'a' (161) Aerodactyl Fossil Missingno. ('x', hex:B9) and a level 80 (hex:50) 'M (00), due to 50 and 00 characters normally directly following a valid name entry name.
The identifiers of the characters can be found on the Big HEX List, as well as in the table below:
Table of selectable names:
||(End of name character)
||Kabutops Fossil Missingno.
||Aerodactyl Fossil Missingno.
||Ä (German version only)
||à Ö (hex:C0)
||Ö (German version only)
||ö ゥ (hex:C1)
||Ü (German version only)
||ゥ 4 î (hex:C2)
||ä (German version only)
||ö (German version only)
||ü (German version only)
||PKMN A (hex:C5)
||Rival (picture/class #1)
||× (multiplication symbol)
||Rival (picture/class #2)
Default name yields
If the player's name was selected from one of the choices at the beginning of the game (e.g. RED), extra Pokémon can be encountered that wouldn't appear if they had entered the same name manually.
This is because internally extra letters appear in these names after the end (hex:50) characters. The names are actually as they appear in the table below.
As none of these names have a no hex:00 character in letters 3, 5, 7, 9 or 11, hex:00 ('M (00)) cannot be encountered with a default name, at least in the English versions.
The next table below shows what default names give what Pokémon.
|| Missingno. (hex:87)
|| Missingno. (hex:89)
|| Missingno. (hex:87)
|| Missingno. (hex:89)
|| Missingno. (hex:50)
|| Missingno. (hex:50)
|| Missingno. (hex:7F)
Exclusively to the German version, the letters Ä (hex:C0), Ö (hex:C1), Ü (hex:C2), ä (hex:C3), ö (hex:C4) and ü (hex:C5) can be entered on the 'your name' screen, and these can be used to encounter glitch Pokémon with index numbers from 192-197, but the hex:C2 and hex:C5 glitch Pokémon (may) freeze the game on encounter.
The glitch Trainers encountered through the old man glitch always have the same rosters.
The roster loaded depends on the memory address D05D. Normally this value is 00, but encountering a Trainer writes that Trainer's roster value to it. This value is kept after battle, so more than one type of old man trick Trainer can be battled.
Below are the first ten glitch Trainer rosters, thanks to Glitch City Laboratories forums user TheZZAZZGlitch:
See also: Infinite items.
The old man trick is arguably the easiest and most reliable way of encountering Missingno. and 'M (00). As their invalid Pokédex flag (#000 but effectively #256) means that encountering or capturing Missingno. and 'M adds a quantity of 128 to the sixth item in the player's bag if the quantity is less than 128, it is ideal for duplicating items, such as Rare Candies and Master Balls.
See also: item conversion.
The old man trick can be used to convert the fourth item into a few other items if the player has a name that lets them encounter a Trainer, and the identifier of the fourth item is not $1X, $3X, $5X, $7X, $9X, $BX, $DX, or $FX. This requires fighting a Rocket on Silph Co.'s 11F first.
The Trainer has level 250 Pokémon, and may use a Super Glitch inducing move, so a high level Pokémon with a one-hit KO move, X Speeds and an X Accuracy is recommended as it's otherwise impossible to defeat all of their Pokémon in one hit, and after the Super Glitch effect happens, the Trainer can send out the Pokémon that just fainted.
For more information, see 94's item conversion.