If you’re a regular player of Pokemon Sword and Shield you’ve probably noticed things have looked a little odd in the recent two or three months. You hop into a raid with three random people online and before the match starts there’s a brief pause as suddenly everyone in your party has an animation of sparkles coming off them. Everyone you’re teamed up with is using a shiny.
Or you do a Surprise Trade only to receive a shiny in a special Pokeball. At first, you get excited but then you realize that your Pokemon has been named either a website that sells hacked Pokemon or someone’s Twitch stream where they hack Pokemon. I got one like this here but I covered the name with something equally relevant. You can still see their original name at the top.
I’m not a betting man, but there’s a good chance a lot of these Pokemon, especially the ones in trades, are hacked and my goodness it is a problem. Online battles are absolutely filled with shiny hacked Pokemon with perfect stats and moves and abilities that aren’t normally available.
Luckily, Nintendo of Japan recently issues a statement that a massive wave of bans was coming. People discovered using hacked Pokemon and “altering their save data” were going to just be banned. No more access to online features. No more raids with people. No more Dynamax adventures with other people. No more trades. Period.
And this doesn’t just apply to Pokemon Sword and Shield but also Pokemon Home.
Hacked Pokemon have been a problem almost as long as Pokemon has even existed. There used to be things called Game Sharks and other things that, instead of working towards the goal of raising something strong, someone could just tell the hack device what they wanted and just be handed it.
Now things are even simpler. Hacking is such a glorified statement for what people are doing. In fact, if you want to see, here’s the program most of the people selling Pokemon for cash looks like.
So if you heard hacked Pokemon and you imagined someone putting some work in and hacking the Gibson, nah. They’re literally just clicking on stuff that they want and a program is doing it all for them. Stats? Best. Ball? Whatever, let’s go with Sports Ball. Shiny? Of course.
Because of the ease in which these companies can just continuously pump out perfect stat shinies and other Pokemon, it has lead to a game whose multiplayer elements are almost nigh impossible without having hacked Pokemon yourself which leads to more people being tempted to buy hacked Pokemon. It’s a business that sells both the problem and the cure to the problem. Like being an antivirus program that also puts a virus on your computer.
So, obviously, because Nintendo very much does not like seeing their game broken, the bans are coming. They’ve already stated that the ban will be permanent and no refunds will be given.
People will more than likely argue this but having hacked Pokemon is like running around a laser tag arena with a baseball bat and arguing that if the children you hit would have also had baseball bats they could have defended the attack.
For the record, this probably makes it sound like I’m a shiny hater or something. I’m not. I am actually a ridiculous fan of shinies. In fact, let me set up camp real quick so you can see my team.
So as you can see, I roll with a bunch of them. The main difference is mine are legit. My shiny starters and Rapidash were hatched from eggs. The Metagross and Umbreon were from Pokemon Go. The Zygarde (my favorite) is from a 2018 event.
There are no special stats with them. Nothing that makes them particularly fancy other than their coloring but…to paraphrase the Rifleman’s Creed “These are my Pokemon. There are many like them, but these ones are mine.”
So with the ban coming, what are some ways you can tell if your Pokemon may be hacked? Ironically there isn’t rest assured way to tell without actually hacking your game in the first place but there are some ways.