From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
The Berry glitch is a glitch only found in the coding of Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire which seems to stop the game's day counter. The name of the glitch comes from the fact that the first thing the player will notice is usually that all Berries that have been planted but have not been harvested have ceased growing. The glitch typically occurs after about a year of owning either game, or to games that have been played over 100 hours.
Other affected areas
As the Berry glitch affects the game's day counter and timer, other areas of the game are affected by the glitch.
Similar effects with dead battery
The glitch results in problems very similar to what happens when the game cartridge's CR1616 internal battery runs dry, which stops the game's clock. However, in cartridges that have a dead battery, there is a message after the title screen that warns of the dry battery and thus clock-based events will no longer occur. In contrast, games being affected by the glitch will not have that message.
Cartridges that report a dead battery may or may not be afflicted with the berry glitch but the methods mentioned later will not fix the affected areas. This may cause the illusion that an Emerald cartridge is affected by the glitch. In order to fix the issues, the battery has to be replaced.
Similar effects after replacing a dead battery
Cartridges that had their battery replaced may experience similar affected areas. The RTC chip's value is reset to a value prior to the "last-saved-field" of the savegame thus causing the game to not register time as passed. Most of the effects mentioned rely on countdowns and will still be visible on cartridges after the battery has replaced. This may cause the illusion that a cartridge is affected by the glitch when it is not.
However, the clock in the player's room and the Eevee evolution are based on "real time" and therefore be correct. Thus, if a cartridge allows different Eevee evolutions and shows time passing on the clock in the player's room but the other effect are visible. Shoal cave is a special case as it includes both dependencies: The tide will change (dependent on "real time") but Shoal Salts and Shoal Shells will not be refilled (dependent on timeouts)
These issues can be fixed by creating a new savegame (and therefore resetting the "last-saved"-field). Using additional hardware, it may be possible to set the RTC value or edit the "last-saved"-field in a savegame.
Fixing the glitch
The glitch can be fixed by downloading a patch from Pokémon FireRed, LeafGreen, Emerald, Pokémon Colosseum, Pokémon XD, Pokémon Channel, Pokémon Box Ruby & Sapphire, the e-Reader, a specific interactive demo disc, or by sending the affected game to Nintendo.
Pokémon FireRed, LeafGreen and Emerald patch
- Load FireRed, LeafGreen, or Emerald until the title screen is displayed.
- Press the Select and B buttons. After the new screen loads, press A.
- Insert the Link Cable so that the system that the FireRed, LeafGreen or Emerald game is connected to the Player 1 cable port and the Ruby or Sapphire game is connected to the Player 2 port. Once this is done, press A.
- Turn on the device with Ruby or Sapphire while holding the Start and Select buttons.
- Refer to the FireRed, LeafGreen or Emerald game display for further instructions. The patch should be transferred at this time.
Pokémon Colosseum and XD patch
Linking an affected game to Colosseum or Pokémon XD for trading or battling will automatically download the patch. In addition, the Bonus Disc that came with pre-orders of Colosseum can be used to download Jirachi into a game; when this happens, the patch is downloaded as well.
Pokémon Channel patch
Downloading Jirachi from a PAL version of Pokémon Channel will automatically download the patch.
Pokémon Box patch
Linking an affected game to Pokémon Box Ruby & Sapphire, accessing the Go To Adventure mode, and then saving the game whilst playing will also automatically fix this glitch, with the message "The Berry Program was updated" appearing with the save confirmation. (Note that this option is not available for Japanese versions.)
For Japanese versions, a special set of e-Reader cards (ID# 16-A001 & 16-A002) were distributed with Pokémon Scoop's Winter 2004 issue to allow players to fix this glitch by using e-Readers.
Interactive demo patch
Specially-marked demo discs were released to selected stores across U.S. and Japan, so players can visit these stores and download the patch from the disc. By downloading the patch from a demo disc, player will also receive a Shiny Zigzagoon holding a Liechi Berry as a bonus. However, since the program does not block fixed games, players can receive multiple Zigzagoon by downloading to the same cartridge again.
Sending cartridge to Nintendo
If the player had no opportunity to download the patch, the game could be sent to Nintendo to have it fixed. However, as of August 2012, Nintendo stopped offering to patch the Berry glitch.