The Pokemon franchise took a journey back to its past while still holding on to the present with the release of Let's Go Pikachu and Let's Go Eevee for the Nintendo Switch. The games see players return to the world of Kanto, the home of the first generation of Pokemon, with old favorites such as Bulbasaur, Charmander, Squirtle and the titular characters all returning. While sporting a bright, new 3D appearance and map, the new Switch games also took elements from the Pokemon GO mobile games to give the original adventure a brand new feel.
With all new video games, there are a number of secrets or hard to find elements that can add to the overall playing experience. These secrets and hidden gems can grant players new abilities, help players find shortcuts through games and provide some overall benefit to you or give you a new experience.
One of the best hidden secrets in Pokemon games gone by was being able to face Red, the main character from the original Pokemon games, in battle in Pokemon Gold and Silver. Discovering him after already defeating the Elite Four and winning the Pokemon championship came as a wonderful surprise for players of the original series of games. Since then, a number of different secrets have cropped up in Pokemon games - adding a new experience for those playing the games. With many new hidden secrets to discover, this list takes a look at twenty of them.
Here are 20 Things Only Experts Know How To Do In Pokemon: Let’s Go, Pikachu.
20 Get a free ‘ride’ Pokemon in Vermillion City
With the release of Let's Go Pikachu came the ability to ride around the Kanto map on Pokemon, forgoing the bicycle or roller blades used in previous iterations. Certain Pokemon were designated 'ride' Pokemon, allowing players to hop onto their back and travel across the map far more conveniently.
But, little do people know, there is a way to receive a free 'ride' Pokemon in Vermillion City - potentially the first one you can obtain in the game unless you catch an Onix before reaching Cerulean City. When you first enter Vermillion City, talk to the person that is sitting on a bench between the Pokemon Fan Club and a house. This person will ask you to catch five Growlithes. After catching these fiery dogs, return to the person and they will reward you with a brand new Persian. In Let's Go Eevee, you have to catch five Meowths and receive an Arcanine instead and a full list of rideable Pokemon can be found here.
19 Playing docked gives you a new secret move
Very rarely do video games use their hardware to add to the experience of the game. The battle between Solid Snake and Psycho Mantis in the original Metal Gear Solid game is one example that comes to mind in this area, however. Needing to plug the game controller into the second controller port in order to avoid Mantis' psychic powers was a genius move that many still talk about today. Let's Go Pikachu itself uses the Switch to add a little bit extra also.
When players play the game in either docked or tabletop mode, there is a small chance that a prompt will appear during battles that allows Pikachu to do a special move that could be 'devastating' to opponents. If Pikachu is not being used, there is a small chance that this 'power' can be used to buff whichever Pokemon is currently battling instead. Using the Switch to add something to the gameplay is a neat trick by Nintendo and could be beneficial to anyone during battles.
18 Using catch combos to find Shiny Pokémon
Shiny Pokemon have been coveted by fans for generations, with the unique color palate adding to the excitement of catching a wild Pokemon. While the color change has no impact on battle stats, it is still something people are interested in, to this day. If you are determined the find yourself a shiny version of a wild Pokemon, then you should be looking at catch combos to aid you in your journey.
Catch combos grow when you catch the same Pokemon over and over again, without breaking the chain with another type. If you catch a Pidgey in the wild, and you want to find yourself a unique shiny version, keep catching more Pidgeys without catching any other Pokemon - this will increase your chances of encountering a shiny. If the chain is broken, the chances of encountering a shiny are reset and the combo will need to be built up once again.
17 Gaining candies through catch combos
Throughout Let's Go Pikachu, catching Pokemon brings with it unique rewards that can be used to help boost particular stats. These are called Candies and can be used to boost anything from attack and defense to speed.
With catch combos, this increases your chance of obtaining more and more candies with each Pokemon you catch - increasing your stockpile of valuable candies that can be used to boost your battling buddies. With higher level Pokemon needing to consume a larger amount of candies in order to increase certain stats, it makes sense to take full advantage of catch combos in order to stockpile a large number of candies that can be used to either help your strongest Pokemon reach its full potential, or simply help a low level grow much faster early on.
16 Unlocking ‘Master Trainer’ titles
Much like previous games in the franchise, if you defeat the Pokemon League in Let's Go Pikachu there will be some new challenges unlocked to help keep the game going even after completing the main objective. After becoming the champion, 153 new trainers will appear across Kanto for you to battle. However, these trainers aren't like ordinary opponents as they require you to battle them using just one specific Pokemon.
The challenge is difficult and will require your own Pokemon to be at a higher level in order to compete, but should you win, you are granted the title of 'Master Trainer' of that particular Pokemon. What also makes it difficult to defeat these Master Trainers is the fact that no items can be used, so you better hope the Pokemon you have chosen is strong enough to battle on its own.
15 Facing Red
Just like the second generation games, the famous trainer Red appears in Let's Go Pikachu - but there are some requirements needed before he will appear in the game. Red is the ultimate challenge for any trainer and will only appear once you have won the Pokemon League and then defeated six subsequent 'Master Trainers' as detailed above.
Once you have completed these requirements, Red will appear on Indigo Plateau directly outside of the Pokemon League, just waiting for you to challenge him. Like the Master Trainers, you are unable to use items so must have the strongest possible Pokemon ready for the battle - which will reward you with the coveted 'Battle Master' title once you have defeated him.
14 Upgrading starting Pokémon move-sets
Starting the game with Pikachu, he has a designated move-set for battles - but this can be re-jigged fairly easily and early on in the game if you so wish. In Cerulean City, at the Poke Centre, you'll find the Move Tutor - standing in the top-right corner of the center.
If you speak to him, he will offer one of three moves unique to your starter, in this case, Pikachu, which can be done multiple times throughout the game to upgrade and adjust the move-set your Pokemon has even at an early stage of the game. Pikachu is capable of learning Electric, Water and, surprisingly, Flying-type moves and returning to speak to this person can help you set an ideal combination of attacks before setting off on the main portion of the game.
13 Using handheld mode to make catching Pokémon easier
Catching wild Pokemon in the GO style might seem an easy task for some, but for others, it can be a bit of a challenge. To make life easier, switch the game to handheld mode as this makes it far easier to control the throwing of the Pokeball when trying to catch the wild creatures. Moving to handheld mode turns catching into gyroscope aiming - meaning that you do not need to simply flick at the screen like before.
You can make your aim far more precise, giving you a higher chance of success - particularly if you encounter some higher level or rare Pokemon out on your travels. It might be unusual to make the switch during combat, but the benefits of changing and ensuring that harder, more elusive Pokemon are caught will be worth it in the end.
12 Interact with Pikachu using the Joy-Con
Like in the original Yellow version during generation one, you are able to interact with Pikachu in Nintendo's latest outing in Kanto. In the original games, interacting with Pikachu allowed you to see how he was feeling - with various expressions being seen for things such as happiness and whether or not he was poisoned.
In Let's Go Pikachu, wagging the joy-con or Pokeball accessory opens up a new view where you are able to interact with your traveling companion in a number of ways. The cute encounter with Pikachu allows you to caress/stroke your Pokemon and even feed them, increasing their happiness and giving you your daily dose of cuteness all in one.
11 Happiness is the key
Pokemon deserve to be happy, and if they are, they will usually reward you with gifts and special abilities that would previously not be available to you. While walking around the overworld, an icon of Pikachu might appear in the corner of your screen if they are adequately happy. This means they have a gift for you, which can be used for your benefit at a later point in time, however, the real benefits from your Pokemon's happiness come during battles.
If Pikachu is happy, he will be able to dodge attacks much easier than before and could even shake off pesky status effects such as poison or burn. Additionally, that same icon that appears in the overworld could appear during a battle - shaking it sees your Pikachu unleash a special one-off attack that could prove decisive during a difficult battle. And it's all thanks to the bond you have built with your companion.
10 Use Pokemon Go to fill your Pokedex
Starting with the very first games in the franchise, it is not possible to catch all 153 Pokemon in the wild in Let's Go Pikachu - with some only being available in the counterpart Let's Go Eevee. However, there is one way to circumvent this situation thanks to Pokemon GO. In Fuschia City, players are able to access Pokemon Go Park - where they are able to link the game to the Pokemon GO account.
Doing this allows players to transfer Pokemon they have captured in GO across to the Switch game, helping them to fill up their Pokedex - including any that are not available in this particular game. This can make life easier for many players, particularly with legendary Pokemon such as the Legendary birds. The one hitch is that once the Pokemon has been transferred over to the Switch game, it can't be returned so will remove that particular creature from the mobile game.
9 Co-op by yourself can improve capture chances
Let's Go Pikachu might appear to be a single-player experience, but there is a way of playing 'co-op' and improving your chances of catching Pokemon by yourself. If you shake the other joy-con but keep a controller in each hand, you are able to throw TWO Pokeballs at the same time at any wild Pokemon you are attempting to catch.
If you can throw the balls so that they connect with the Pokemon at the same time, it will trigger a special animation that is otherwise unseen and it will, in fact, increase your chances of capturing them. You do not need to play the entire game using the co-op mode, but if a rare Pokemon, such as the Legendary birds or Mewtwo, appear then switching to that mode could help increase your success with them while doing very little for it.
8 Find wild spawns of the Legendary Birds
Catching the Legendary Birds is an impressive feat for any trainer, and it is very clear where they can be found within the game. Just like the original games from the '90s, Zapdos is found in the Power Planet, Articuno is found in Seafoam Islands and Moltres is found on Victory Road.
Now, imagine encountering a SECOND version of each bird in the wild. It seems unthinkable to most due to the fact that they are supposed to be unique, one-off, creatures but it is very possible to find another one of each bird randomly during your travels. They will only appear after the original version is caught in regular circumstances and trainers will need to keep a Flying-type Pokemon on hand to help catch up to them. All three of the birds have a chance of appearing on Routes 1-4, 6-8, 10-19 and 21-25 after they have already been captured.
7 Obtaining Mew
Just like the original games, the first 150 Pokemon available to capture did not include the legendary mythical creature called Mew. The games included the larger, arguably more powerful clone of the original, however, with trainers able to capture it in Cerulean Cave after winning the Pokemon League. Original games had glitches that allowed people to capture Mew in the wild after going through a number of steps, but an easier way, at the time, was for players to attend conventions and be given a Mew for free or for a certain price.
In the latest games, a low-level Mew will be included with purchases of the Pokeball Plus accessory. There are 153 Pokemon in Let's Go Pikachu, including the new game-exclusives, but purchasing the Pokeball Plus will see you increase this total to 154 and give you one of the best Pokemon in the game - with an ability to learn many attacks, with a pure Psychic type. If you buy the Pokeball Plus and start a new game, you can even have Mew join your party early on, giving you a very powerful early-level Pokemon to take on the Kanto world.
6 Obtain the original three starters
As Let's Go Pikachu is essentially a modernized version of Pokemon Yellow, it's understandable that people would want to obtain the three original starters; Bulbasaur, Charmander, and Squirtle. All three of the Generation One starters are in the game, but there are some specific milestones that need to be reached before you can earn them at the three set locations throughout the game.
Just like the original game, Bulbasaur can be obtained in Cerulean City - but you will need to have caught at least 30 different Pokemon before you are given it. Charmander will be given to trainers that have caught over 50 different types of Pokemon on Route 24 and Squirtle can be obtained from Officer Jenny in Vermillion City once over 60 different types have been caught. What is interesting about obtaining Squirtle in Let's Go Pikachu is the fact that Officer Jenny is the one to give it to you - a subtle nod to the animated series where Squirtle and Officer Jenny crossed paths.
5 Using catch combos for extra XP
Catch combos will become a key part of any trainer's journey throughout the Kanto region, with the new mechanic helping trainers increase not just their stockpile of candies as previously mentioned, by their XP bonuses from catches also. Every time a Pokemon is caught during the game, trainers receive XP bonuses, with this number differing depending on what creature is caught, how large they are, whether it's the first time this species has been caught or not.
When catching the same type of Pokemon over and over again, this will add a catch combo bonus that will increase the XP earned through each catch. This is a sure-fire way of gaining a lot of experience quickly and can be a huge benefit to players early on in their journey.
4 Using the partner power/secret Eevee and Pikachu moves
During the original string of Pokemon games, some special moves were required at various points of the game in order to help players progress beyond a certain area. These moves were called HM's and were used for things such as cutting down trees and bushes (cut), lighting up pitch-black caves (flash) as well as allowing trainers a way to cross vast stretches of water (surf).
Now, within Let's Go Pikachu, there have been included some 'Secret Techniques' that have effectively replaced HM's in this version of the game. While essentially taking on the same role as the HM's of the original games, these new Secret Techniques have been given new names and can only be used by your starting Pokemon, in this case, Pikachu. ST's now no longer take up attack spaces for your Pokemon, meaning you do not need to remove a useful attack power in order to use this overworld ability.
3 Shiny Magikarp
Everyone loves Magikarp, right? In the original Pokemon games the large fish was able to be purchased for just 500 Poke Dollars, what a bargain! In Let's Go Pikachu, it is possible to purchase a Magikarp in exactly the same way as the original Generation One game - simply talk to the Magikarp seller and cough up your hard earned cash. But, there is a way of obtaining a special Shiny Magikarp as opposed to the regular type.
This will require a lot of patience, however, as players will need to save their game before talking to the Magikarp salesman and check how your new Magikarp looks everytime it is purchased. If your Magikarp is ordinary colored, restart your game. Do this process over and over again and eventually you will land a Shiny version of the weakest Pokemon in existence - though it does, of course, evolve into one of the best regular Pokemon going in Gyarados.
2 Get the IV Checker/Judge function
Let's Go Pikachu has used a number of features from Pokemon GO, with the way Pokemon are caught being the most notable. One other feature that has been brought across is the IV Checker/Judge function that allows players to inspect the stats and IVs of their caught Pokemon - though it is not accessible immediately in the game.
The way you obtain this function is reminiscent of obtaining things such as the EXP Share in the original games. First, you will need to catch 30 different types of Pokemon in the game before heading to the building at the very far end of Route 11 (the one that connects to the road blocked by the Snorlax on Route 12). If you go inside the building and head upstairs, there will be one of Professor Oak's assistants. If you have the 30 different types of Pokemon, he will simply update your Pokedex to use this highly useful function.
1 Walk around with a Pokémon in the Pokeball Plus to get bonuses
Purchasing Pokeball Plus is a great way of obtaining the legendary Pokemon Mew, but it is not the only thing that it is useful for. Imagine it is like a modern day Tamagotchi, where you are able to put a Pokemon inside and walking around and interacting with it can help it to grow.
If you place a Pokemon inside the Pokeball Plus, it will grow in experience at a steady rate and will even reward players with extra bonuses such as Rare Candies depending on how much it is used and how much your Pokemon grows by. So if you don't have the time to sit down and play Let's Go Pikachu in the comfort of your own home, why not put one of your traveling companions inside and help it grow even with your Switch sat idle at home.
Do you know any more hacks and tricks for Pokemon: Let’s Go, Pikachu? Let us know in the comments!