Is it possible to trade Pokemon from the 1st generation games to the most recent ones?

  • I know that you can trade Pokemon between games of the same generation (Gold/Silver, Ruby/Sapphire) and even trade between 1st gen and 2nd gen. However, I haven't been able to find a way to trade Pokemon so that I can play with my 1st generation Pokemon in HeartGold, for instance. If it is possible, how many steps would it take and what equipment would I need?

    This is now possible, but requires extra hardware and 3DS hacking. See my answer.

  • As of 2016, it is possible to trade from the Virtual Console editions of Pokémon Red, Blue, Green and Yellow to the new Pokémon Sun/Moon (Gen 7) via Pokémon Bank.

    Unfortunately while Gen 6 (X/Y/OR/AS) is compatible with Pokémon Bank, it is not possible to receive Gen 1 Pokémon in those games.


    However, if we're talking about the original Gameboy cartridges, it can't be done. The limits on trading are as follows:

    Generation 1 (Red/Blue/Green/Yellow)
    ↑↓ Both directions
    Generation 2 (Gold/Silver/Crystal)
    X Trade impossible
    Generation 3 (Ruby/Sapphire/Emerald/FireRed/LeafGreen)
    ↓ One-way only, allows held items
    Generation 4 (Diamond/Pearl/Platinum/HeartGold/SoulSilver)
    ↓ One-way only, no items
    Generation 5 (Black/White/Black 2/White 2)
    ↓ One-way only, no items
    Generation 6 (X/Y/Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire)
    ↓? (Unreleased, backwards trading yet to be confirmed, Pokémon Bank currently forbids items)
    Generation 7 (Sun/Moon)

    There are three main reasons you can't trade between Gen I/II and Gen III:

    1. The Pokémon data format changed significantly in Gen III, so the two were incompatible.
    2. The GBA link cable uses a different voltage to the Gameboy link cable. Even though a GBA can play old Gameboy games, it uses different circuitry than when playing GBA games, so the games' link cable functionalities are fundamentally incompatible.
    3. Even if these weren't an issue, Nintendo never released a product that allowed trade from one to the next.

    Excellent answer, but #2 on your list is not entirely true: it's definitely possible to connect up a GBA and original Gameboy, I've done it. You need a special cable though.

    If I recall correctly, you can link a Gameboy to a GBA, but only with Gameboy games. The cable operates either either Gameboy-mode or GBA-mode, but never both at once. Hence it's impossible to trade between generations, even if the game's software supported it.

    I ve heard you could put 2gen pokemon on Pokemon Stadium, and get them back to 3gen, but never had a nintendo 64. Anyone could confirm?

    @DrakaSAN: The Pokémon Stadium games predate 3rd generation by about 2 years, and you can't fit a GBA cartridge in a Transfer Pak anyway - so no, that's not possible. There's no path between 2nd and 3rd generation.

    Generation 7 is released now and backwards trading is not possible. I'd edit this in but it's not a community wiki so it didn't feel right.

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Content dated before 6/26/2020 9:53 AM