|Hack of||Pokémon Gold|
|Type of Hack||Upgrade|
|Latest Update (Version)||2012|
Pokémon Christmas, also known as "The Christmas Hack" is a hack of Pokémon Gold created by Mateo. The hack is the second hack in a series known as the Johto Legacy, with a prequel known as Pokémon Spirits and Legends currently in early development stages. The game takes place in the Johto region during the same year as Pokémon Gold, only it assumes the events of that game have already happened during the spring and summer. The events of the hack are focused on a winter and holiday theme. Instead of creating a new world like most hacks, this hack can be considered an "alternate third-version" or a replacement for Pokémon Crystal.
The player begins his or her journey in New Bark Town. They receives their first Pokémon from Professor Elm, with a choice of either Cyndaquil, Totodile, or Chikorita. Whichever player was not chosen in the intro will be present as a recurring NPC at different points in the game. Professor Elm's daughter, Kris, begins her journey at approximately the same time, and serves as the player's friendly rival along the way. Regardless of the Pokémon chosen by the player, the rival will always receive a Marill as her first Pokémon. The journey takes the player across Johto and Kanto, and he explores many new areas in addition to the originals. With quests ranging from rescuing a band of Delibird from Team Rocket to participating in a Legend Festival on South Isle, the player has a lot of Holiday adventures awaiting them.
As with any Pokémon game, trading and battling are still present in the hack. The normal machines are still in each Pokémon Center, which allow all of these features to be utilized, including the Time Capsule machine from Gold and Silver versions, theoretically allowing trading with the original Red, Blue, and Yellow versions. Pokémon no longer require trading to evolve, but trading will still make them evolve if you choose to do it that way, making this as much an aspect of the game as it was in the official games. The Pokémon from newer generations are not able to be traded to games that don't contain them, however. If the player attempts to do so, the other game will say the Pokémon is "irregular" and cancel the trade. A Global Terminal appears in Goldenrod City and allows an offline clone of Wonder Trade to be used.
- The player and rival both receive new outfits for the cold winter weather.
- There is also the added ability to play as a Boy or a Girl, which was not in original Gold.
- Some events will be slightly different based on gender, but the story is still the same.
- All areas feature new snowy tilesets to set the atmosphere, and updated "Gen Two-And-A-Half" graphics.
- Almost all areas have been re-mapped to bring them up-to-date with the designs from HeartGold and SoulSilver versions when possible.
- Most inland lakes have frozen over, but have holes to allow ice fishing. The player can slide on the ice of frozen lakes the same way as in Ice Path.
- New locations have been added to Johto and Kanto, including the Battle Tower from Pokémon Crystal and the routes added in HeartGold and SoulSilver.
- Kanto areas such as Viridian Forest and Pewter Museum have been restored.
- Some events inspired by Pokémon Crystal or the Anime have been added.
- All major events have been re-designed to have a winter or holiday theme.
- The trainer line-up of the Elite Four has changed.
- Viridian City has a different Gym Leader, and Blaine's Gym once again has junior trainers.
- Some trainer classes have been changed, and some that have remained have new sprites.
- A handful Pokémon from Generations III and IV have been added, replacing Generation I and II Pokémon that were not well suited to the winter climate.
- A new move, Flame Ball, has been added to replace Rock Smash in function.
- Some other new moves have been added as well, such as Draco Meteor and Rock Climb.
- New game corner prizes are available in both Johto and Kanto.
- A few new recurring characters can be found, most notably: Red, the player from Red, Blue, and Yellow; Mateo, an NPC representing the hack's creator; and Flannery, a Gym Leader from Hoenn who appears to be Mateo's girlfriend.
This game features several new Pokémon added from Generations III and IV. Mostly these are either to add more Ice-Types to the game, to continue evolutionary lines, or just because I liked them. The complete list of new Pokémon are:
Because of this, several Pokémon cannot be caught in the game or received in a trade, as they have been replaced.
More detailed information on capturing or evolving the newly added Pokémon can be found on their respective pages.
This hack is the second hack, and technically third game, in the series. Chronologically, it comes after Pokémon Gold, with Pokémon Spirits and Legends serving as the first game in the series. For more detailed continuity information regarding the series, see the full article on the Johto Legacy series.
The hack has been generally well-received by both the Skeetendo and Pokécommunity forums, even though it was released on the latter in the middle of Summer instead of the more ideal Winter release it enjoyed at Skeetendo. It also received favorable reviews from 4chan's /vp/ imageboard during its Christmas release.
The current version (at the time of this writing) was released on 23 December 2014. It was a major overhaul from the 2012 version, and has been acclaimed as feeling "more like a new game" instead of just Gold with snow and some new things tossed in at random.
This hack was initially created in 2010 as a follow-up to the failed Halloween Hack. However, its first version was missing several features that would be added to the later 2012 version. Among the features missing initially were:
- No final trainer after the Elite Four.
- Articuno was originally in Ice Path instead of the Ice Shrine on Southern Island.
- No Legend Festival on South Isle or battle with Flannery.
- Trading and Battling was initially unavailable, as the second half of South Isle (which had the Global Terminal in the 2012 version) were not included.
- The new Pokémon were not included until the 2012 release.
- The Day Care couple did not give you a Togepi egg in the original release.
- The hack's tagline, "Trainin' in a Winter Wonderland" is a reference to the Christmas song, "Walkin' in a Winter Wonderland".
- This hack was conceived after Mateo was unsatisfied with the original Halloween Hack. That hack was purely a gimmick, with only minor superficial changes to the graphics and a very small area added that did not serve much of a purpose in the grand scheme of the game. "The Christmas Hack" was intended to be much more of an overhaul of the game than the Halloween Hack had been, in an effort to make it more enjoyable and less a waste of time.
- This hack revives or references a few ideas from a cancelled hack known as Pokémon Sterling Silver, originally developed by Mateo and Pyro.
- The NPCs of Mateo and Flannery are in multiple places at once. By flying, you can simultaneously encounter them in Celadon City, Fuchsia City and Southern Island's Global Trade Station. This is more of a goofy oversight than a bug, as it is now somewhat intentional.