Back in say late two thousand and eight little teenage me was scrolling from the gbatemps forums looking for a

Shiny slowpoke global link art by trainerparshen-d6tehyn

pokémon crystal ROMS not knowing about ROM sites yet. Where I found this to be frank average looking file it had the same file size and there was no reason to be suspicious but its name was Pokémon Crystal edition Slowpoke; I didn't really think much about it as the author of the post was called SlowpokeTailCollector. No reason to think about this I loaded my emulator launched the ROM in full screen, and away I was never really thinking twice about it what-so-ever. The game launched as normal no reason for me to freak out or anything. Everything was the same and there was nothing out of the ordinary; that was until I got to azalea town, this is when things started to get weird! You walk up to the Slowpokes and interact with him just like in Pokémon yellow a box came up with a picture of a Pokémon it was not a happy Pikachu but a depressed sad looking Slowpoke that dopey little face we all love was empty from all emotion: eyes lifeless, mouth closed (almost frowning),a lot paler than the normal shade of pink (a lot more washed out), I can't describe the cry but it sounded somewhat slower and deeper and a lot sadder sounding like it was whimpering, they sounded in tremendous amount of pain as there was an unusual amount of quivering in the cry, it sounded unbearable.

Obviously the limited capabilities of the Game-boy meant that it was not in much detail, either-way it sure was a shocker and slightly depressing; because of this I decide to take a break as I was going to see my friends that evening and I did not want to put a downer on the mood. So I saved went out of full-screen and tried to turn my computer off. but it would not go off; and on my task bar I noticed the AVG icon was up and I had a virus, downloading the ROM must have infected my computer with viruses that effects the shutdown.exe, so I figured OK lets shut the program off that wouldn't closed the gameboy emulator. So I figured might as well carry on playing whilst my antivirus continues doing a full scan. At this point I was in the game I just went in the well, and Kurt tumbles down the well and this is where things to me get creepy, I tried communicating with Kurt and all the text says is "...". He died from the massive fall into the well, the major fall from falling hundreds of feet down the well instead of taking the ladders must have cause instant death, the body looked immaculate and there was no real way of telling that he was dead; which is obviously weird.

The layout of the well was also way off, instead of water to the side there was Slowpokes... All tailless, music at this point was replaced with the depressed Slowpoke cries. There was literally not one tile of ground, all Slowpokes. I carried up the cave and saw nothing but darkness like when you don't use flash in generation one darkness, it fealt empty of life and atmosphere which is creepy, normally you would find hundreds of zubats within 10 steps but guess what? Not one. This was Creepy as the entrance was well lit. I walked for what seemed like ten minutes but as around two minutes in reality my woofer pounding with the sound of eight-bit pokémon cries for help getting louder and louder.

I was now in the main chamber there was five things that I spotted immediately: pile of discarded Slowpoke tails to the left it had a little stub of spine slightly sticking out the thicker end of the tail, it was as if they were just pulled from the torso of the Slowpoke they were positioned on the far left side in a densely ball of tails really eerie, floor of the chamber splattered in bright red obviously representing blood; it was literally just a solid block of red no fancy blobs nothing, just redness, dead Slowpokes indicated with anime style crosses through eyes they were literally stacked up in a pile on the right side of the warehouse like chamber and their were hundreds of tailless Slowpokes Just all sitting there... staring on every available tile, they all had that depressed painful look on there face, and they were all lifelessly staring. At this point the speakers where basically a giant distorted mess somewhat resembling Slowpoke cry it was painful to the ears; and in the centre of a ten by one path there was a man he just looked like a regular rocket grunt but when i entered a battle animation he had a soulless look in his eyes, pure white pupils, and in his hand a katana blood droplets at the end in poor quality as if someone has rushed the job. He had six pokémon all slowpokes, level fifteen slowpokes with one move. Struggle, they were trying to kill themselves to get away from the pain of having their tails removed via machete. The winning victory was you murdered innocent slowpokes how do you feel?

I looked at my party and all my Pokémon are level fifteen Slowpokes zero/zero health with the status condition. Closing the menus confused. Then I noticed the other player in the room inching towards ever so slowly as if it were a scene in the Matrix me till he was next to me I swear I felt a breath on my neck that's how close he was, he then sneered spitting as he talked in a burly voice "You haven't got any more Pokémon to defend you? Oh dear time for me to cut off your tail!" At this point there was a black screen, it was as black as a void, it was the edge of the universe... Shocked, I was out the cave. the sprite it was different my trainer instead of the peachy coloured skin tone that looked full of enthusiasm and youth my trainer had before now he was white, eerie and ghostly white. Everything else was weirdly the same from a single patch of grass of route thirty three, to the oriental buildings of azalea town, it really was the same, Weirdly though there were no more Slowpokes outside and when I entered the cave there where no more Slowpokes in there and the layout returned to normal, it's as if they had all vanished.

I looked in my party, and all that was in there was a level hundred "Killer" the which had an Onix sprite in the party but when i brought the stats up he has the same sprite as the man in the cave down to every last detail. At this point the game became interesting to me but also very frightening as there was no one in the town except: the Pokémart owner, Nurse Joy and trainer battles. I went to escape from the town rushing to the exit, the rival battle activated normally, but this time instead of sending out Gastly like he normally does he sent out a Slowpoke; at this point I thought "this is good scripting for a ROM hack" I sent out "killer" he had one move "slice" it was a one hit KO move which had nine hundred and nine PP, it had no battle animation. I used it, it took away all of the health of the Slowpoke but the shiny effect shown, but instead of changing colour its tail was removed, and it had the same face like when you interacted with it; but this time a lot more pixelated as it was less detailed. But instead of saying it fainted it said "You killed Slowpoke" and in the corner before it shown three pokéballs now there is two! Next he sent out another Slowpoke and this time I had the option of using "Manipulate" this one had nine hundred and ninety nine pp as well, but I could no longer use Slice. I used it, it showed the cut animation. Slowpoke went down to no HP But this time I heard that painful Slowpoke cry again, and the sprites tail was removed.

And the message said "The Slowpoke is crying in pain, it would rather be dead!"; I never new that you could feel regret for pixels in a childs game but it definitely did, I regretted letting the poor Slowpoke live when they were obviously in so much pain, it tore me up inside, but deep down I knew they were pixels and had no way of hurting me. And then the last Pokémon there was a choice of two moves "slice" or "manipulate", the choice was up to me, it was a moral choice did I want to kill Slowpokes or torture Slowpokes and allow them to bleed out alive? Whenever I had the option I killed them as I knew they were in pain otherwise and a quick painful death is better than a slow painful death to me, although I felt terrible as they still had a chance to recover. The winning message is nothing, they say nothing, they just stare at you not saying a word, maybe they were simply to scared to say anything, or maybe we killed there spirit and they just give up, who knows?... You get six hundred and six pokédollars. In Ilex forest there was no Pokémon to catch the at all adding to the distant empty feeling that this ROM had given to the world, I felt I was all on my own, I felt as if somehow it was my fault, I was complety emmersed in this world; this honestly did not help with the atmosphere as I thought it was still the same basic game, it wasn't it is like being the last person in the world, yeah you could do what you want, but there in no point.

I walked to where the normally happy Farfetch'd was, which was replaced with a tailless depressed Slowpoke, creepy yes. But it did not affect the puzzle at all except the Farfetch'd cry was replaced with the same depressed Slowpoke cry which had honestly lost all of its flavour with me, as it was repeted far too much! But when you return the Slowpoke the trainer says "get away from my Slowpoke you murdering scum", and did the kicking effect like when your rival does to you standing outside of Elm's lab, he gave what seemed like a violent kick as I literally was kicked back to azalea town. Other than this the game played out as normal except all the trainer battles had be killing Slowpokes in the order "Slice", "manipulate" or the choice. This was until you got to Goldenrod town, the city was a wreck, and everything was smoked out looking like the burned tower charcoal brown and dirt brown, it looked like an advert to stop cigarette smoking, as everything was in ruins, from the radio tower which was a shell of it's former self completely burned out except for steel girders, and a concrete foundation and a couple of windows and the train station which had collapsed under the weakened wooden rail tracks crashing into the ground. tailless Slowpokes scattered around the building, forming a scatter formation, then a scripted event came up. An NPC ran up to me and said "You, you did this. What have Slowpokes done to you? Why did you start the fire?" I was sitting there thinking "Huh? I never did anything. I never even got to this city!".

Now my "killer" was released from his ball he was following me up route thirty five, keeping up the pace with me, just like in Heart gold or sould silvers following pokémon; there were no trainers there I walked to the National park a the normal trainers that were up the backward r shaped path were nowhere to be seen it was as if they saw this coming; the door to the national park was locked, spamming the a button I knew I had no choice... I turned around and there was "Killer" he said "You don't trust me?" this statement on its own was creepy enough but then the music stopped, he carried slurring words "can't say I blame you. I never really wanted nor needed you! Time to end this!". Now a battle began I could have swore that the battle music was slightly louder and more intense, I had one move "Pray" I couldn't run from a trainer battle and could not switch, and there was nothing in my bag to help meaning I have one option. I used pray, it had no effect just like splash, there was nothing more I could do... He used "slice". The Text said "You died, game over". And the Emulator closed itself, to be honest I was filled with rage as there was nothing I could have done.

At this point AVG removed the viruses, and because of this my copy of the game was lost the user who put up the file was banned, and I could not track down another copy and my anti-virus deleted the file as it detected it as a virus after doing a full virus scan. Take it from me I'm glad I can't find the copy.

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