As has been well-documented, Minecraft is a sort of breeding ground for Pokémon fan recreations. Somebody made a working Game Boy Advance capable of playing Pokémon Fire Red last summer, while another fan created an entirely new 3D Pokémon adventure, all in Minecraft. If you’ve been reading the site for a while, you might also remember the fan who was working on a fully functional recreation of Pokémon Red. He was off to a strong start in 2015, and now, the project is finally finished (via Polygon).
When we last checked in on Mr. Squishy, who went by Magib1 at the time, he had the Pokédex, basic game mechanics, and the world map done. Now, he’s finally finished, and the game is a true port, meaning that he didn’t just make a Game Boy emulator in Minecraft and load the Pokémon Red ROM into it: He recreated the entire game from scratch.
In the above video interview with Polygon, Mr. Squishy explains how that process worked and why it was necessary:
Minecraft has command blocks, which allow you to write code in-game. There’s no easy way to just take the ROM for one of these old games and dump it into Minecraft. To get all of the functionality in the game, you basically need to re-code everything from the ground up inside the game, so that’s what I’ve done here.
Mr. Squishy also documented the process on Reddit and answered some questions there, revealing that so much effort went into this endeavor: He walked over 1,760 in-game miles and used 357,000 command blocks over the 21 months it took to finish the project. Even all of the game’s original glitches have been recreated. Now that’s dedication.
Of course, this Minecraft-based Pokémon game is a totally different beast from the other aforementioned efforts…
The Pokémon Fire Red remake is more graphically intensive since it’s a GBA game, but movement is a bit choppy and it’s still very much a work in progress (although the latest version of the game has made great strides and it looks fairly accurate at this point).
Then there’s Pokémon Cobalt and Amethyst, which is in a completely different league. Instead of recreating an existing game, this one is a completely new adventure in 3D. It copies the original game mechanics, and it’s sort of like a merge of Pokémon Stadium and Pokémon Sun and Moon, so it’s very robust. It has an original plot and even a bunch of brand new Pokémon, so the game definitely goes beyond the call of duty.
Each of these fan projects are special in their own way, and a testament to how versatile of a creation environment Minecraft can be to people with good ideas and ambition.
Feel free to download the Pokémon Red remake for yourself and give it a go, right here. Are you going to try this out, or are you going to stick to your emulators, or perhaps an original cartridge? Hit up the comments below and let us know what you think!