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20 Best Pokémon ROM Hacks – A Gamer’s Ultimate Guide

  • PRG

There are quite a few Pokémon ROM hacks floating around on the internet. Some of them are great; others not so much. If you can’t get enough of Pokémon, you can be sure that you’ll enjoy these hacks. If you’re a newbie to the world, you can learn more about what they are below.

From these, the Team Rocket Edition mod has to be the best. You’ll play as Team Rocket characters on missions, which is a pretty cool twist.

I’ve been a fan of Pokémon for as long as I remember, and I was looking for ROM hacks to download recently. While on the hunt, I stumbled on the Team Rocket mod and realized that it was my favorite.

I’ve also looked at 19 other top choices that you check out. These are all great options which will give you an amazing gaming experience.

What are the Best Pokémon ROM Hacks?

I’ve run through 20 of the best Pokémon ROM hacks below.

Let’s get to it. 

1.     Pokémon Team Rocket Edition

Pokémon Team Rocket Edition

By far, Team Rocket Edition is the best mod hack out there. As mentioned, you play as a member of Team Rocket on one of their missions. Throughout the game, you’ll have to fight trainers and steal their Pokémon. 

The mod is set in the Kanto region. You will be able to explore parts of it that you normally don’t get to see. You also get to unravel mysteries and conspiracies on the island, which makes things more exciting.

2.     Pokémon Gaia

Pokémon Gaia is another top choice. It’s a modded version of the Fire Red game. Essentially, it revolves around Professor Redwood noticing unusual seismic activity, and asking you to investigate.

While on the journey, you will be able to explore brand new parts of the Kanto region. This includes amazing underwater lands.

It also includes Pokémon from other regions, like Hoenn, Sinnoh, Unova, Johto and Kalos.

You get access to mega evolutions, and your Pokémon can even learn more modern attacks and abilities.

The cherry on the top is the fact that you can climb walls and investigate more areas of the map.

3.     Pokémon Flora Sky

Of course, we had to include Pokémon Flora Sky. It’s one of the most popular choices out there.

It’s a re-skin of Pokémon Emerald that focuses on Giratina trying to take over.

While attempting to stop Giratina, you will also have to deal with Team Aqua and Magma and their sinister plans.

You’ll have an expanded, new Hoenn region to explore. There will be new towns, players and gym leaders to meet.

There are over 365 Pokémon to catch. They’re from a pretty diverse selection; generation 1 all the way to generation 4. 

4.     Pokémon Phoenix Rising

If you want a fresh new take on the Pokémon series, give Phoenix Rising a try. It turns the Pokémon world into an RPG simulation.

You’ill have to make tough decisions every step of the way which affect your gameplay. What’s also interesting is that you get mega evolutions as well as Relic forms.

All of this takes place in a new region called Hawthorne.

5.     Pokemon Dark Rising

Next up, we have Pokémon Dark Rising. It is a modded version of Fire Red, like quite a few of the options so far.

It takes place in the Core region, and you begin the game by speaking to Arceus. He reveals that you are the chosen one, and that you will need to save him and the Pokémon world from mysterious forces.

Compared to the other mods on my list, this storyline is quite interesting.

6.     Pokémon Glazed

Pokémon Glazed is one of the most popular mod hacks out there, so I just had to include it.

Here’s the storyline behind it: a dark force wreaks havoc on the region, which also affects the Pokémon world. You’ll have to explore ruins and figure out what’s really going on.

You can choose from 5 different starters; plus the Pokémon you’ll be able to catch are from different generations.

There is also a Dream World ROM that is related to the Glazed mod, which is basically a sequel.

7.     Pokémon Fools Gold

The Fools Gold Mod is based on the Pokémon Crystal game. These are pretty identical, apart from one big difference. In Fools Gold, the Pokémons’ types and sprites have been changed.

For instance, Snorlax is turned into a fighting type, which is not something you’d ever expect.

8.     Pokémon Stadium Kazio

Stadium Kaizo is a personal favorite of mine. It’s based on the Pokémon Stadium game, but the battles are even harder. Rental Pokémons’ stats and moves are more complex.

9.      Pokémon Girantina Strikes Back

We have another game that focuses on Giratina trying to take over the world: the Giratina Strikes Back mod. It is based on the Pokémon Ruby game.

It takes place in the Lunoh region. There is a fan-created Pokémon that you can catch, which is also cool.

10.  Pokémon Nova Red

I don’t know about you, but I’m a big Digimon fan. I really like the Nova Red mod because it combines Digimon in the Pokémon world.

There are over 200 Digimon that you can catch, and each comes with 5 different evolution stages.

Apart from this, Nova Red follows the same plot as Fire Red.

11.  Pokémon Brown

Pokémon Brown is another popular ROM hack. It is based on Pokémon Red, but this time around, you play in an industrialized region called Rijion.

You’ll be able to catch 5 different types of Pokémon: Wood, Wind, Sound, Gas and Abnormal. What’s neat is that the mod includes fan creations too.

I also have to mention that the mod was one of the first Pokémon ROM hacks to ever hit the market. It’s definitely a classic.

12.  Pokémon Sors

Pokémon Sors is a twist to the Fire Red game. You will have to explore a new region called Hupest.

Here’s what you should know about its plot: 300 years before the events of Pokémon Fire Red, a mysterious event made the Pokémon turn violent and gave them a new Eclipse form.

Cut to the present, and you play as a boy whose parents work in an organization that’s trying to bring back the Eclipse type.

While on your journey, you’ll encounter various mysteries and obstacles.

13.  Pokémon Radical Red

Some users say that Radical Red is the best ROM hack out there, and I have to agree that it’s really good.

It follows the plot of Fire Red, but things are more challenging for the player. You won’t be able to use items in battle, and there is a level cap as well.

Plus, gym leaders have improved stats as well as access to legendary Pokémon, and mega evolutions.

If that’s not impressive enough, you can catch Pokémon all the way up to generation 8.

14.  Pokémon Theta Emerald Ex

Theta Emerald EX is another good choice. As you might have guessed from its name, it is based on the Gen 3 game – Pokémon Emerald.

The mod is nothing too fancy, but it’s an improved version of the Emerald game. It stays true to the original plot. 

You’ll not only be able to catch 3rd gen Pokémon, but 1st and 2nd Gen too. You also get access to various new moves and items. 

15.  Pokémon Prism

Next up, we have the Prism mod. It’s based on Pokémon Crystal. However, it lets you explore brand new regions called Naljo and Rijon. So this means there are new Pokémon to catch. Some of them include Gas and Sound types.

The game follows Lance’s child, who befriends a Larvitar and goes on a journey to beat the Gym leaders in the region.

Many users say that Prism is similar to the Brown ROM hack, and I have to agree.

You can customize your Pokémons’ appearance as well.

16.  Pokémon Revolution Online

MMOs are probably my favorite type of game. I would have loved it if there was an official Pokémon MMO game, but this probably won’t happen.

Luckily, there are MMO mods. Revolution Online has to be the best out of these.

It’s based on the first four regions of the series, and you’ll have to fight all the trainers and gym leaders. However, there are some new features, like side quests and guilds that you can join as well.

One of the reasons I like Revolution Online mode so much is the fact that it regularly gets updates. Bugs and patches will never be an issue. It also gets new features and missions added often.

17.  Pokemon Light Platinum

If you’re a fan of Pokémon Ruby, you’ll love the Pokemon Light Platinum mod which is a re-skin of it. 

It’s set in an entirely new region called Zhery, which has some exciting areas to explore. It also comes with some vibrant graphics.

Plus, you will be able to catch all kinds of Pokémon  – all the way from generation 1 to 4. Trying to complete the Pokedex alone is really fun.

Overall, you get access to a brand-new league, as well as an evil team to defeat.

18.  Pokémon Crystal Clear

Pokémon Crystal Clear is a pretty cool ROM hack. Basically, you will have access to the Pokemon Crystal game, but all the restrictions on it would be removed. This means that you have access to an open-world that you can explore.

What’s also exciting is that you can pick and choose as many starters as you want.

19.  Pokémon One Piece

If you’re like me and are a fan of One Piece, you’ll love the Pokémon One Piece mod.

It follows the same plot as Fire Red, except that you go up against One Piece characters.

At the end of the game, you need to fight to earn the title of Pirate King.

Although it’s a good game, there’s a reason it didn’t snag a spot higher up on my list. It feels a little too basic.

20.  Pokémon Blaze Black 2 & Volt White 2 Redux

Last but not least, we have the Blaze Black and Volt White Mod hack. As you might have guessed from the name, it’s a reimagining of the Black and White game.

It doesn’t differ too much from the Black and White plot. The only difference is that it’s more customizable, and you will be able to catch Fairy types too.


Answered below are some popular questions.

Where is the Best Place to Download Pokémon ROM hacks?

There are a couple of great places that you can download mod hacks from, but a personal favorite has to be Pokémon Coders. It has a really good ROM selection, and is easy to work with.

However, instead of it, you could give Pokémon Harbor a try. I know several users who are big fans of it.

Final Thoughts

There are quite a few great Pokemon ROM hacks out there and I went through 20 of the best. It’s clear that Pokemon Fire Red: Team Rocket Edition takes the cake. It comes with an exciting plot point that none of the other choices on this list can even match.

You will have to play as a Team Rocket member and work to catch Pokemon from other players. Compared to the generic plots in other games, this is quite a great twist. Speaking of interesting plots, the Dark Rising mod is also quite good.

However, the other top choices include Pokemon Gaia as well as Radical Red. Radical Red takes the classic Pokemon Red game and makes it more interesting by upping the difficulty factor. If you’re someone who likes a good challenge, it’s a great choice for you.

We hope you enjoyed all the Pokemon hacks on this list. Make sure to check them out; you know you won’t regret it!


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