From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
The beta release of a typical piece of software is a common name for the release that is first seen by the public. In a beta version of software, most functions are identical to those in the final release, however, there may still remain several software bugs that have not been addressed.
Several aspects of the later development stages of the Pokémon games have been discovered by players, either through later hacking of the final game to find disabled features, or through the initial screenshots and media released to the public.
Red and Green
- Main article: Pokémon Red and Green beta
Despite having been in development for six years by their release, several supposedly dummied-out aspects of Pokémon Red and Green were discovered through glitches in the software which allowed for their appearance. Missingno. is the most well-known of these aspects, as it is essentially the "null data" Pokémon possibly used for testing various aspects of gameplay.
- Main article: Pokémon Yellow beta
A special edition of the first generation games due to its anime-based storyline, Pokémon Yellow has also passed through various stages during its development. Certain features that were planned but were scrapped in the final release have been found through hacking methods. The most likely known beta feature of the game is the battle system with no Pokémon, which provides a glimpse at an alternate way of performing Pokémon battles.
Gold and Silver
- Main article: Pokémon Gold and Silver beta
The most well-known of the beta Pokémon games, the unfinished version of Pokémon Gold and Silver went through many changes in its development. As it is essentially based on the coding of Pokémon Yellow, far more so that any other later-generation game on the coding of a previous generation, several aspects of this game can be found through hacking, and others (such as friendship) became fully fleshed-out in this game pair.
- Main article: Pokémon Crystal beta
Probably the most feature-complete of the pre-Advanced Generation era and the game that set features that would become standard in main series Pokémon games later on (e.g.: female player characters), Pokémon Crystal also includes unreleased components that weren't part of the final release, of which few can be encountered through hacking. Some of them have also been officially mentioned.
Ruby and Sapphire
- Main article: Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire beta
Through the movement of Pokémon from the very similar Game Boy and Game Boy Color, which the series had been developed on since it had begun in 1990, to the Game Boy Advance, the developers initially saw it fit that they attempt to upconvert aspects from the previous generation's games to get the hang of the new ability offered to them.
FireRed and LeafGreen
- Main article: Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen beta
Though based on the Generation I games in name and setting, the coding for FireRed and LeafGreen is based on that of Ruby and Sapphire before them. As such, items from those games appear and can be obtained through hacking.
- Main article: Pokémon Emerald beta
As with most third games, Emerald contains very little beta elements. An area titled "Special Area" was programmed into the game but ultimately never used. In addition, music from FireRed and LeafGreen exist within the coding.
Diamond and Pearl
- Main article: Pokémon Diamond and Pearl beta
Diamond and Pearl feature numerous elements that were redone, including backsprites for many Pokémon which seem to have been merely upconverts from the Generation III and before 64×64 size to Generation IV's 80×80 size. As well, a ???-type version of the final Pokémon of the generation, Arceus, exists in the games' coding.
- Main article: Pokémon Platinum beta
Platinum features many of the same beta items in its code, likely to maintain compatibility between the three games without the hassle of changing index numbers, however, it also contains unused sprites which are different from both the Diamond and Pearl spriteset as well as the Platinum spriteset.
HeartGold and SoulSilver
- Main article: Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver beta
As with most paired games, HeartGold and SoulSilver had some elements changed between their announcement and their release. For example, later in development, Silver's sprite was altered to more closely resemble Ken Sugimori's artwork while an early screenshot of Slowpoke Well did not show Executive Proton as being present as he is in the final version (instead, a grunt is standing where Proton is in the final version). Ethan's back sprite, as well as Pichu and Pikachu's front sprites, were slightly altered as well.
Black and White
- Main article: Pokémon Black and White beta
As with the previous Generations, the introductory titles to Generation V is no exception when beta elements come into play. Numerous screenshots were shown displaying both beta sprites and beta location designs, including at least four revisions of Castelia City prior to release.
Black 2 and White 2
- Main article: Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 beta
As with all games, Black 2 and White 2 feature some things not present in the final copy. Unlike past generations that had single enhanced third versions of their introductory games, Generation V has the first direct sequels in the main series games. There are new cities, towns and routes not seen in the previous games.