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A Guide to Ruby & Sapphire
Written by Agito   
Tuesday, 10 June 2008 22:01
Hey everybody. You’ve probably seen Ruby and Sapphire around for quite a while now, but hey, it’s never too late to at least put my two cents in for it. I love this game so much, and since people tend to miss some things, I figured I may as well write this up.

I’m basically going to arrange it into sections based on working up to each badge. I’ll make notes of side quests and things whenever you can get to them, as well as Pokémon you can catch and even mention them again when they’re around the level to evolve.

Anyway, without any further necessities, let’s begin!

-~The Beginning~-

So you start a new game and go through Birch’s speech. Doesn’t this look familiar? Well, it won’t if you’re new to the series, but it is much like Oak’s typical speech. After that, you find yourself in a moving van! After a moment, it comes to a halt and you can get out.

-Littleroot Town-
You hop out of the van and are instantly greeted by your mother. This is Littleroot Town, your new home. You go inside, go upstairs to set your clock, and then come back down.

After seeing a TV thing (sorta), you are told to go next door and introduce yourself. Of course, Birch isn’t home, but, depending on your gender, Brendan/May will be upstairs. They leave pretty quickly. Pursue!

-Route 101-
Head up north of town and enter Route 101. At the entrance, a kid tells you that someone’s shouting up the road. Continue forward, and you’ll find Professor Birch being chased by a Poochyena. Come to his aid by activating his bag and choosing a Pokémon from within.

Pokémon Available:
-Treecko: The Grass-type starter, Treecko is pretty quick and is pretty easy to raise… when it has stuff to hit. Admittedly, I had more trouble with Treecko because it was harder to find things that actually went down against Grass-type attacks.
-Torchic: The Fire-type starter, Torchic is, in my opinion, the easiest to raise. It is quite traditional for a Fire-type starter, learning moves like Ember, but there is one specific reason you will want to evolve it at level 16. More on that later.
-Mudkip: The Water-type starter, Mudkip is a bit more defensive than the others. It should not be too difficult to raise, but, of course, it depends on preference.

Once you choose one of these Pokémon, the battle will commence. You will send out the one you chose automatically. It’s a level 2 Poochyena, and it should not be difficult at all.

Note: If you care about natures, check your Pokémon while in the battle. If it does not have a nature you want, you can restart and save the time of going through the next sequence.

After the Poochyena has been felled, Professor Birch will thank you and tell you to return with him to his lab.

-Littleroot Town-
Professor Birch is so grateful, he gives you the Pokémon you chose. You have the option of naming it, and then he tells you that his child, Brendan/May, is on Route 103, and would appreciate a visit.

-Route 101-
Although you are told to go find Brendan/May, you have time to level up before the battle, if you please. I suggest getting your starter to level 7-9 to ensure victory. The numbers are small enough that a 2 level advantage will make a huge difference. You can’t capture anything yet, though, so I’ll talk about the wild Pokémon later.

-Oldale Town-
Since you have to pass through here anyway, you may as well figure out how stuff works, if you don’t already know. It has a Pokémon Center, which you may need to use if you train for fighting your rival. You can also get a Potion from the Pokémart guy next to the house to the right of the Pokémon Center.

Note: You can’t go west onto Route 102 because some guy says he wants to look at Pokémon footprints. He will go away once you take care of this event, so just ignore him for now.

-Route 103-
Proceed to Route 103. Your rival is at the north end of the route, so proceed up there to challenge him/her. (S)he will have whichever starter is stronger against yours; if you chose Torchic, you’ll have to fight Mudkip, etc. Either way, it shouldn’t be too hard, as it is at level 5 and will not know any non-Normal-type attacks.

After you beat Brendan/May, you will have to go back to Littleroot Town.

-Littleroot Town-
Go into Professor Birch’s lab. He and your rival talk a bit, but that’s not the important part. Birch gives you the Pokédex, and then your rival gives you five Pokéballs to get started with. Isn’t that nice? Once all the festivities are over, you are free to leave the lab.

Before you can proceed to Route 101 again, though, your mother stops you to give you the Running Shoes, allowing you to run if you hold B. Now, run back up to Route 101 and begin your adventure!

-Route 101-
Nothing else happens here, but now you can capture Pokémon! So, I shall explain a bit about what we have here.

Poochyena - A Dark-type, Poochyena is not particularly strong. It can be a pain to raise at first, but it’s something I never really regretted training. It’s much easier to raise once it gets Bite at level 13.

Zigzagoon - Normal-type Zigzagoon is relatively easy to train. Its stats aren’t wonderful yet, but it gets a decently strong move, Headbutt, at level 9. Pretty sweet. I recommend keeping one in your party for now even if just for its ability, Pickup (quite handy, I must note).

Wurmple - Ah, puny little Wurmple. It, obviously, is a Bug-type. Maybe not strong, but once it fully evolves, it can really come in handy.

-Route 103-
No more events to mention, just a Pokémon.

Wingull - Wingull is an oddity this early in the game, being a Water/Flying that starts with a Water-type move. For now, it’s worth attention, especially since it will be missing in the wild list for a while after Route 104.

-Route 102-
You can go west of Oldale now, to Route 102. Pretty immediately, there’s a trainer with a Zigzagoon, and a few others over the course of the route. No events, just training and Pokémon.

Seedot - Ruby only, Seedot is a Grass-type. It can be a real pain to raise right now, though, because it only knows Bide and Harden right now. It levels up quickly, though.

Lotad - Sapphire only. It is a Grass/Water Pokémon that can be of decent use. I can’t say a lot about Lotad, seeing as I have Ruby and have only used it briefly in Emerald, but once it gets Water Gun, it can be pretty solid for a little while.

Ralts - You’ll see one of these for an event that occurs soon, but it is quite rare otherwise. It is a Psychic-type that, at the levels it comes at here, only knows Growl. You will need to switch out out to raise it to level 7, when it learns Confusion. Many people love its fully-evolved form, but more on that later.

Surskit - Also extremely rare, you very well may never see a Surskit here. It is a Bug/Water-type, and is quite fragile, but knows Bubble right off. If you use it properly, it can be effective even this early on, but again, you may never even see it here. It can be found later on, though, so don’t worry.

Also worthy of note is that there are the first two berry trees in the game here at the north side of the route.

-Petalburg City-
If you listened to people, you should know your dad is the leader of the gym here. Go on in. You won’t be allowed farther west until you do.

Your dad lends a kid called Wally a Pokémon and Pokéball so he can capture a Pokémon. You have to go with him get his Ralts. After that, though, you’ll be free to go to Route 104.

-Route 104 (south)-
No events here yet, just Pokémon. Whenever you’re done here, proceed to Petalburg Woods.

Taillow - Your typical early game Flying/Normal-type, with a twist. The twist is that it’s quite a bit better right now than its equivalents in other games. It’s fast and can actually dish out some decent damage with its Normal- and Flying-type moves. Even if you don’t want it in your final team, it’s worth picking up for a while.

-Petalburg Woods-
A dark, dingy place, Petalburg Woods must be traversed before you can get the first badge. It’s a pretty good place for leveling up for a little while, so stay as long as you’d like, I guess. It’s also home to the next event, but before we get there, a couple things worth checking out.

First, if you go to the right, there will be a patch of grass with a single panel empty, where there is a Potion. Also, the exit to the south of that point takes you to the ledge in Route 104, where there is a Pokéball waiting for you to pick it up.

Also, there are a few Pokémon…

Silcoon/Cascoon - Both of these cocoon-like Pokémon are evolutions of Wurmple. You may already know this if you’ve raised one. Both can be found wild here and only know Harden, unless you evolved one from Wurmple, in which case it knows Tackle, String Shot, and Poison Sting, as well.

Shroomish - This annoying little guy is a Grass-type, and is annoying for particularly one reason. Its ability is Effect Spore. That means any time a physical attack hits it--ANY time--the attacker has a chance of receiving a random status ailment. Also, it’s just plain not bad. Pick one up if you want.

Slakoth - Very rare, Slakoth is a Normal-type Pokémon that is a real pain to use. Its ability makes it only able to attack every other turn. Not very helpful, indeed.

Anyway, if you continue left from the entrance and proceed up the zigzagging path, you will come across a man who says he’s looking for a Shroomish. Pretty quickly, another man comes up and demands some important papers.

Now, we first see a major difference between Ruby and Sapphire. If you are playing the Ruby version, you will see a member of Team Magma. However, if you have Sapphire, it will be Team Aqua. Right now it’s not major, as this person always has a level 9 Poochyena (which shouldn’t be much trouble), but later on, it will affect what Pokémon they use as well as the legendary you can capture at the end of this plot.

Since the Team member attacks you, you have to win the battle, and then the person runs off. The guy with the important papers (whatever they are) gives you a Great Ball as thanks, and then takes off, as well.

Now you’re free to continue to the end of the woods and exit to… Route 104 again!

-Route 104 (north)-
Finally, out of the woods! Yes, this is technically the same route as before, and it has the same wild Pokémon, but the trainers are a little bit better. There are no important events to note, but a few other points of interest.

For one, there are a few berry trees. One is to the left of the exit of the woods, and the other is to the right from the end of the bridge across the pond.

Next to the first batch of trees is a random person who wanders around a few tiles near them. Talk to him, and he’ll give you a TM containing Bullet Seed. It’s not spectacularly strong, but it may serve you well for a little while.

There is also a building just a bit north of the exit from the woods, the Pretty Petal Flower Shop. As the name implies, it’s a flower shop, but you really do need to stop in here. One person inside gives you the Wailmer Pail, which you need to water berries that you’ve planted, and another gives you a random berry every day.

There is a patch of grass north of the shop which has a few items in random clear patches. Like I mentioned before, the Pokémon are the same as the southern portion of Route 104.

On the bridge, you get to have your first double battle, if you have at least two Pokémon with you. Not important, but fun.

-Rustboro City-
Whenever you’ve finished with your business on Route 104, you can continue on to Rustboro City. This is where your first gym battle takes place. Before that, however, there are a few things that ought to be covered…

You may have seen an item behind the fence on the east side of town. It is possible to reach this by entering from the other side of the fence on Route 104. In the building to the left of the Pokécenter, there is a man who will give you the HM01 Cut.

There’s also a person in a house who wants to trade you their Makuhita for a Slakoth, but it’s not all that great of a trade (even though I’d prefer a Makuhita to a Slakoth, you’ll be able to catch Makuhita reliably soon). There is also a Premier Ball to be received in one of the buildings, as well as a Quick Claw from the school.

Anyway, although that all will likely help, it’s not why you’re here. You’re here to take on the gym! And before we do that, some notes. Let’s move on to Route 116 right quick.
 

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