Transform glitches

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These are glitches involving the move Transform.

List of glitches

Generation I

Main article: List of glitches (Generation I)

--

Main article: -- (move)

In Generation I, if a Pokémon transforms into another Pokémon that knows more moves and, while transformed, switches around the copied moves with the SELECT button, after the battle the Pokémon will not have Transform and will instead have the glitch move --. This can also be done with Pokémon that have used Mimic in order to use Transform.

By Wooggle
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Ditto glitch

Main article: Mew glitch

The primary method of the Mew glitch involves having a wild Ditto transform into the player's Pokémon, as this copies the Special stat, which is used to modify the species of Pokémon encountered.

Color loss glitch

In Generation I only, a transformed Pokémon will lose its color and become gray if any of these happen:

  • If the transformed Pokémon uses Transform again
  • If the other Pokémon successfully uses any move on the transformed Pokémon
  • If the opposing Pokémon is transformed and the player throws a Poké Ball on it (including a failed Poké Ball thrown in a battle against a Trainer)
  • If the player opens the party screen and returns to battle

Level up moveset glitch

Only in Generation I, if a transformed Pokémon levels up and learns a new move, it will use its original moveset (unaffected by Transform) from this point onwards in the current battle. Additionally, any PP lost from this point onwards in the current battle will not affect the Pokémon's actual PP as shown in the summary, which will effectively be restored once the transformed Pokémon switches out, faints, or the battle ends. For instance, if a Mew transformed into Pikachu reaches the level 20 and learns Mega Punch, then it will have Mew's moveset (including Mega Punch) from this point onwards in the current battle, not Pikachu's moveset (even though Mew remains transformed into Pikachu). If that Mew had 29 PP remaining for Pound when it transformed, then it will still lose PP as usual for each use of Pound, if any (decreasing to 28 PP, then 27 PP, and so on), but once the current battle ends, Mew will still be shown to have 29 PP for Pound, just like it had before transforming.

Transform + Mirror Move/Metronome PP error

If Mirror Move or Metronome is used by a transformed Pokémon, the move of the same slot in that Pokémon's actual moveset will have its PP increased by 1. This occurs even if there is no move in that slot, which can prevent the use of Struggle or cause a softlock when targeted by Disable. PP of slots without moves will not be reset to 0 when healing at a Pokémon Center; the glitch can only be repaired by repeating it 256 times, at which point the PP count will overflow to 0.


By Crystal_


Generations I and II

Transform assumption glitch

In Generations I and II, if the player catches any transformed Pokémon, that Pokémon is permanently converted to a Ditto.

This means that if the player catches a Mew or a glitch Pokémon which has used the move Transform, or a Pokémon which has used Transform via Mirror Move, instead they will obtain a Ditto. Mew turning into Ditto was not an issue in these games because a wild Mew could not be legitimately encountered prior to Generation III. However, the Clefairy, Pidgey, and Fearow lines, which could be found in the wild, could use Transform via Metronome and Mirror Move, and would turn into Ditto on capture. This system was fixed in Generation III.

All the moves previously known by this Pokémon are lost, as its only move when caught will be Transform.

If a transformed wild Pokémon is caught in a Generation I game (and becomes a Ditto), then Ditto's catch rate will be saved as well, so this Ditto will be holding a Metal Powder if transferred to a Generation II game (regardless of the original or transformed species). However, if a transformed wild Pokémon is caught in a Generation II game, this wild Pokémon's held item (if any) remains unaffected by this glitch.

By v0id19
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By pokemontutorialTV
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Transform DV manipulation glitch

If the opposing Pokémon (either a wild Pokémon or a Pokémon owned by a non-player character) uses Transform twice in the same battle (that is, uses Transform when it is already transformed), it will retain the DVs of the penultimate Pokémon it transformed into.

There are some additional effects:

  • If a wild Pokémon uses Transform twice, and then is caught by the player, these manipulated DVs are kept by the caught Pokémon. However, the caught Pokémon will always be Ditto due to the Transform assumption glitch.
  • In Generation II only, if a Pokémon owned by a non-player character uses Transform twice, and then the player uses Roar or Whirlwind to force the NPC to switch Pokémon, the next Pokémon sent as a result of this move will have the same manipulated DVs as the previous Pokémon. (conversely, if the NPC switches Pokémon because the previous Pokémon fainted, the next Pokémon sent will have its original DVs, unaffected by this glitch)

Some examples:

  • If the player already has any Pokémon with Transform (Ditto, Mew or certain glitch Pokémon) that has perfect DVs (15 for Attack, Defense, Speed, and Special), then this glitch can be used to catch wild Ditto perfect DVs as well. This is accomplished by waiting for a wild Ditto to use Transform twice against the player's Pokémon, and then catching this wild Ditto.
    • In Generation I only, if the player has any Pokémon with Mimic, then it is also possible to catch a wild Ditto with the same DVs as the player's Pokémon. This is accomplished if the player's Pokémon uses Mimic and copies Ditto's Transform, and then the wild Ditto uses Transform twice (by first using its original Transform move, and then using Transform that was copied by the player with Mimic).
    • In both Generations I and II, the move Metronome has a slim chance of calling Transform as well. This can be used to perform this glitch.
  • This glitch can be used to catch a Shiny Ditto.
  • This glitch can be used to change the gender of the opposing Pokémon.

Shiny Ditto glitch

This is based on the Transform DV manipulation glitch.

If the player already has any Shiny Pokémon with Transform (possibly a Shiny Ditto, Mew, Smeargle, or glitch Pokémon), then it is possible to use this glitch to catch Shiny Ditto. It is not possible to catch a Shiny version of any other Pokémon species using this method, due to the additional glitch in both Generations I and II that causes any transformed wild Pokémon to be a Ditto when caught.

Due to Shininess being determined by DVs in Generation II, if a non-Shiny wild Pokémon transforms into a Shiny Pokémon and then uses Transform again, it will become Shiny. Conversely, if a Shiny wild Pokémon transforms into a non-Shiny Pokémon and then uses Transform again, it will become non-Shiny. This way, a wild Pokémon can even switch between Shiny and non-Shiny versions multiple times in the same battle. This does not work when Transform is used by a Pokémon owned by a Trainer (either the player or a non-player character).

This allows the player to make a wild Ditto Shiny by having it use Transform while already transformed. This is possible by using a Shiny Pokémon that knows Transform in battle against a wild Ditto, and then waiting for the wild Ditto to use Transform twice (by first using its original Transform move, and then using the Transform that was copied from the player's Pokémon). In Generation II games, after the wild Pokémon transformed twice in the current battle, it still appears with its original color palette at first. However, if the player opens the list of Pokémon or the Pack and then returns to battle, or simply catches that wild Pokémon, the color palette will be updated. At this point, a Ditto that was originally non-Shiny (purple) will appear with its Shiny (blue) color palette.

Alternatively, the player may transfer a Shiny Pokémon with Mimic from a Generation II to a Generation I game (even though this Pokémon won't appear as Shiny in the Generation I game, it still will have the correct DVs of a Shiny Pokémon). In Generation I (but not in Generation II), Mimic is able to copy Transform, and it can even copy moves that haven't been used yet (because the player chooses the move from a list). If the player uses that Shiny Pokémon with Mimic in battle against a wild Ditto in Generation I, the player's Pokémon can use Mimic to copy the wild Ditto's Transform, and then the wild Ditto can use Transform twice (by first using its original Transform move, and then using Transform that was copied by the player with Mimic). As a result, the wild Ditto will have the same DVs as the player's Shiny Pokémon, and therefore will be a Shiny Ditto; its Shiny appearance will be shown if it's caught and transferred to a Generation II game.

By v0id19
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Transform gender change glitch

This is based on the Transform DV manipulation glitch.

This glitch can be used to change the gender of a male or female Pokémon in battle. It works with wild Pokémon, as well as Pokémon owned by a non-player character. However, if a wild Pokémon is caught after this glitch is performed, it will become a Ditto (a Pokémon species with unknown gender) because of the Transform assumption glitch.

Usually, a Pokémon that uses Transform keeps its original gender, even while it is transformed. For instance, a female Smeargle using Transform stays female during its transformation, no matter the gender of the copied Pokémon. However, due to gender being determined by DVs in Generation II, if a male or female Pokémon transforms into a Pokémon with the correct DVs for the opposite gender (according to the gender ratio of the original species before it was transformed), and then uses Transform again, then the gender of the transformed Pokémon will change.

For instance, Clefairy's gender ratio is one male to three females, therefore any Clefairy with an Attack DV between 0-11 is female, and between 12-15 is male. If the player uses a Ditto with 15 Attack DVs against a Clefairy, and then Clefairy uses Metronome to call Transform, Clefairy will become a Ditto as well. At this point, Clefairy will have Ditto's DVs, but will retain its female gender symbol because Clefairy's original DVs are still used to determine its gender. If the player then switches to Pikachu, and Clefairy (transformed into Ditto) uses Transform again, Clefairy will transform into a Pikachu and will become male (its gender symbol will change to male), because Ditto's DVs are now used to determine Clefairy's gender.

Additionally, if the player performs this glitch against a non-player character's Pokémon, and then the player uses Roar or Whirlwind to force the NPC to switch Pokémon, then the Roar/Whirlwind shared DV glitch will be activated as well. This means that the next Pokémon sent by the NPC will have the same DVs and therefore will also change its gender, depending on their gender ratio.

Generation II

Main article: List of glitches (Generation II)

Roar/Whirlwind shared DV glitch

This is based on the Transform DV manipulation glitch.

In Generation II only, if a Pokémon owned by a non-player character uses Transform twice, and then the player uses Roar or Whirlwind to force the NPC to switch Pokémon, the next Pokémon sent as a result of this move will have the same manipulated DVs as the previous Pokémon. (conversely, if the NPC switches Pokémon because the previous Pokémon fainted, the next Pokémon sent will have its original DVs, unaffected by this glitch)

For instance, if the player uses a Ditto with the lowest possible DVs (0 for Attack, Defense, Speed, and Special), and the NPC's Pokémon uses Transform twice against this Ditto (the first Transform possibly from Metronome, and the second Transform copied from Ditto), then the NPC's Pokémon will retain these DVs as well. If the player uses Roar or Whirlwind to force the NPC to switch Pokémon, then the next Pokémon will have 0 DVs as well.

Additionally, this glitch can be used to transform the NPC's Pokémon into Shiny Pokémon, and/or to change their gender (see Transform gender change glitch) by manipulating their DVs.

If the NPC copies the DVs of a Shiny Pokémon owned by the player by using this glitch, the next Pokémon sent by the NPC as a result of Roar or Whirlwind will be Shiny as well. That Shiny Pokémon will display the sparkle animation when entering battle, but it will appear with the non-Shiny color palette at first. Once the player opens the party or Pack, that NPC's Pokémon will appear with the Shiny color palette.

As another example, this glitch may be performed to cause Whitney's Clefairy and Miltank to be Shiny. One possible way to do this would be by battling her with a Shiny Ditto as the first Pokémon, and a Pidgeot with Whirlwind to be used later. The player's Ditto must not use Transform (that is, it must stay as a Ditto). If Whitney's Clefairy uses Metronome and calls Transform, then Clefairy will transform into Ditto. Once Clefairy is transformed, the player may switch into Pidgeot. After Whitney's Clefairy (transformed into Ditto) uses Transform for the second time, it will transform into Pidgeot and will retain the Shiny Ditto's DVs (even though Clefairy will not appear as Shiny yet). If Pidgeot uses Whirlwind, it will force Whitney to switch into Miltank, which will have the same DVs and therefore will be Shiny. If Pidgeot uses Whirlwind again, Whitney's Clefairy will be switched back, and will be Shiny as well.

By Daniel CM
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Sketch glitch

In Generation II, if a Pokémon uses Sketch while transformed, it will permanently learn the sketched move, normally replacing Transform. A move can then be passed down as an Egg Move through breeding with a female Pokémon if the transforming Pokémon is Ditto or male.

This was commonly exploited with Ditto by using a Trainer House Trainer who has a Smeargle acquired using Mystery Gift. The most popular method was to face this Trainer in the Trainer House and have the user's Pokémon Transform into a Smeargle with at least one move other than Sketch. The user's Pokémon could then copy the other move via Sketch or if necessary defeat the Smeargle and Sketch another attack.

Alternatively, a Pokémon with Metronome has a slim chance of using Transform, giving it the chance to copy a move via Sketch which replaces Metronome with this move at the end of the battle. This includes several Pokémon who learn Metronome from TM35 in Generation I (Mewtwo, Gengar, Golem, etc.) who can be traded to a Generation II game and permanently learn new moves by using this glitch.

Additionally, glitches with the potential of changing the species of another Pokémon such as the Pokémon merge glitch can also be used as part of extensions of the Sketch glitch in order to teach Pokémon Transform or Metronome to exploit the Sketch glitch.

By ChickasaurusGL
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Shiny Transform switch

If a transformed Pokémon defeats a Trainer's Pokémon and the player switches it out to a Shiny Pokémon when prompted to, the transformed Pokémon will have a Shiny palette while being switched. This does not happen if player switches Pokémon normally.

By BrightcynderPhase2
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Mirror Move failure

In Generation II only, Mirror Move always fails when used by a transformed Pokémon.

Generation III

Main article: List of glitches (Generation III)

Level up stat glitch

BoEANSprite.png This glitch is in need of research.
Reason: It is currently unknown what other games this glitch is present in, if any.
You can discuss this on the talk page.

In Pokémon Emerald, if a transformed Pokémon levels up during battle, it will utilize its normal, non-transformed stats for the remainder of the fight.

Generation IV

Main article: List of glitches (Generation IV)

Transform held item glitch

In Japanese versions of Diamond and Pearl, if a Pokémon holding an item uses Transform and has its item stolen, as long as it does not faint before the end of the battle, both the transforming Pokémon and the thief will retain the item after the battle.

Transform faint glitch

In the Japanese version of Pokémon Diamond and Pearl, if a transformed Pokémon faints, it will keep the moves it learned via Transform. This glitch may be potentially used to teach any move (except Struggle) to the transformed Pokémon. Any of the previous moves are deleted, including Transform.

Alternatively, Transform may also be called by Mimic, Copycat, Assist, or Metronome. For instance, a Gengar with Mimic can temporarily copy Transform in battle, and then transform itself into a Pokémon with the desired moveset in order to perform this glitch. If Gengar faints while transformed, it will keep the moveset copied with Transform.

Exploiting this glitch allows for Ditto to learn moves other than Transform, and to subsequently pass down any Egg Move in the Day Care if the paired Pokémon is female.

This glitch also allows Ditto to enter Super Contests and earn their respective Ribbons. Usually, Ditto would be unable to enter any Super Contest, because only Pokémon with at least two moves may enter.

By CollectorTogami
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Rage glitch

In Generation IV, this glitch causes a transformed Pokémon with Rage to keep the moveset acquired via Transform (including Rage itself) even after the battle ends. Any of the previous moves are deleted, including Transform.

This glitch is activated if a Pokémon uses Rage and then is hit by another Pokémon, which causes the "<Pokémon>'s rage is building!" message to appear. Once this is done, the transformed Pokémon needs to finish this battle by using a move other than Rage, or the player must finish this battle by catching the opposing Pokémon. After the battle is over, the transformed Pokémon will retain this moveset.

By BozoTheBear
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Alternatively, Transform may also be called by Mimic, Copycat, Assist, or Metronome. For instance, a Gengar with Mimic can temporarily copy Transform in battle, and then transform itself into a Pokémon with Rage in order to perform this glitch. At the end of the battle, Gengar will keep the moveset copied with Transform.

By BozoTheBear
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This glitch may be potentially used to teach almost any move to a Pokémon, by transforming it into a Smeargle that knows Rage as well as the desired moves to be copied (except Chatter or Struggle, which can't be legitimately learned by Smeargle).

Exploiting this glitch allows for Ditto to learn moves other than Transform, and to subsequently pass down any Egg Move in the Day Care if the paired Pokémon is female.

This glitch also allows Ditto to enter Super Contests and earn their respective Ribbons. Usually, Ditto would be unable to enter any Super Contest, because only Pokémon with at least two moves may enter.

Level up stats glitch

BoEANSprite.png This glitch is in need of research.
Reason: It is currently unknown what other games this glitch is present in, if any.
You can discuss this on the talk page.

In Pokémon Heart Gold and Soul Silver, if a transformed Pokémon levels up during battle, it will utilize its normal, non-transformed stats for the remainder of the fight. This glitch is documented by JRose11 in Pokémon Emerald and by Creepy in Pokémon Heart Gold and Soul Silver

By JRose11
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By Creepy
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Main
Multiple
generations
:
Transform glitchesGlitch TrainersCloning glitchesError messagesArbitrary code execution
Generation I: --0 ERRORBroken hidden itemsCable Club escape glitchExperience underflow glitch
Fight Safari Zone Pokémon trickGlitch CityItem duplication glitchItem underflowMew glitch
Old man glitchPewter Gym skip glitchPokémon merge glitchRhydon glitch
Select glitches (dokokashira door glitch, second type glitch) • Super GlitchTime Capsule exploitZZAZZ glitch
Generation II: Bug-Catching Contest glitchCelebi Egg glitchCoin Case glitchesExperience underflow glitch
Glitch dimensionGlitch EggTeru-samaTime Capsule exploitTrainer House glitchesGS Ball mail glitch
Generation III: Berry glitchDive glitchPomeg glitchGlitzer Popping
Generation IV: Acid rainGTS glitchesPomeg glitch
Surf glitchTweakingPal Park Retire glitch
Generation V: Sky Drop glitchFrozen Zoroark glitchChoice item lock glitchCharge move replacement glitch
Generation VI: Choice item lock glitchCharge move replacement glitchLumiose City save glitch
Symbiosis Eject Button glitchToxic sure-hit glitch
Generation VII: Charge move replacement glitchChoice item lock glitchToxic sure-hit glitchRollout storage glitch
Generation VIII: Charge move replacement glitchChoice item lock glitchToxic sure-hit glitchRollout storage glitch
Glitch effects: Game freezeGlitch battleGlitch song
Gen I only: Glitch screenTMTRAINER effectInverted sprites
Gen II only: Glitch dimension
Lists: Glitches (Gen IGen IIGen IIIGen IVGen VGen VIGen VIIGen VIIISpin-off)
Glitch Pokémon (Gen IGen IIGen IIIGen IVGen VGen VIGen VIIGen VIII)
Glitch moves (Gen I) • Glitch types (Gen IGen II)


Project GlitchDex logo.png This glitch Pokémon article is part of Project GlitchDex, a Bulbapedia project that aims to write comprehensive articles on glitches in the Pokémon games.