Over 20 years after deletion, a lost Pokémon game has been reborn

 Pokemon Red and Blue.
Pokemon Red and Blue.

There have been several cancelled Pokémon games that have never seen the light of day, forever trapped in shadowy Pokéballs waiting in Nintendo’s offices somewhere. Now, one lost Pokémon game has returned to the internet and is fully playable for all.

Pokémon Adventure 2000 was a browser-based game created by Cyberworld International and funded by Warner Brothers Pictures to promote the second-ever pocket monsters film, Pokémon The Movie 2000. After the game reached one million downloads within a single month, Nintendo issued a cease and desist and supposedly felt that Warner Brothers had violated their promotional contract by developing a full game.

Former Cyberworld developer Eddie Ruminski sat down to chat with DidYouKnowGaming about the circumstances: “Nintendo didn’t expect that promotion to include something that was legitimately a video game.” Thankfully, Ruminski shared the (previously) lost game files with DYKG, who subsequently dumped the game online for us to enjoy.

Pokémon Adventure 2000 isn’t your typical creature collect-a-thon, though. In motion, the game looks closer to the classic Doom shooters, as you navigate 3D levels populated with 2D sprites. There are some dungeon-crawling influences, too, since you utilise Pokémon’s special moves to solve environmental challenges - a forest fire can be put out with a water-type move, for instance.

The romp only lasts around 10 minutes, but some difficulty options and various Pokémon teams probably add some replayability. Should you want to play it yourself, check out the full how-to-play instructions on DidYouKnowGaming’s YouTube video. Some cool concept art, music, and storyboards have also been archived here.

For more, check out these fan theories about the next Pokémon remakes.