It’s Christmas time, which means a lot of newcomers to the year’s biggest and best games. One of those was easily Pokemon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire, which follows the franchise tradition of remaking a classic previous game using the new engine. This also means a lot of returning fans to the series, who might not have picked up a Pokemon game in many years. So, to combat this we’ve put together a quick and easy guide to get you started in you epic Pokemon adventure. Take a look at these basic tips to help get you started, and let us know in the comments if you have any questions.
As has been the case with every Pokemon game before it, Pokemon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire starts off by making you choose between one of three starters. Treecko, Torchic, and Mudkip are available to choose from, and really you should pick whichever you like the best. Treecko is a Grass-type and will do well against Ground, Rock, and Water-types, but poorly against Fire, Ice, and Poison. Torchic is a Fire-type who will dominate Grass, Bug, and Ice while failing against Water, Ground, and Rock. Finally Mudkip is a Water-type who can usually defeat Ground, Rock, and Fire, but will have trouble against Grass and Electric-type Pokemon. No matter which you choose you will do well in the game, and will find even more powerful Pokemon later on.
Speaking of the different types of Pokemon and what they are vulnerable to, it is very important to keep your own Pokemon types in mind when creating a team and entering combat. Depending on what type you and your opponent are, you can either do double damage, or receive double damage. The chart created by Bulbapedia seems to cover it best, so keep this handy while playing:
When forming your team you’ll want to be sure to spread out the types you have available, as well as the types you are vulnerable to. So, if you have a team full of Grass, Steel, Bug, and Ice Pokemon then a single Fire-type could pretty easily wipe you out. You’ll want to keep a variety to avoid this.
Catch ‘Em All
In order to form this diverse and effective team, you’ll have to catch a bunch of Pokemon. If you’ve ever played a Pokemon game before then you know the drill, but for those just starting out it is pretty simple. Whenever you are walking around in the tall grass, or in a cave of some sort, you are open to attack by wild Pokemon. Once in battle you will want to get their health down low before you can try to catch them. Once their health is in the red you can throw a Poke Ball and hope for the best.
However, this is just at the start of the game when the wild Pokemon will be low level and can be caught with a normal ball. Later on you can get specialty Poke Balls that will help catch higher level Pokemon. My favorite is the Quick Ball, which is most effective at the start of combat. Before even attacking you can hurl this at the wild Pokemon and many times you’ll get it without a single bit of HP being shed. There are other varieties though, so check out this list from Serebii:
- Cherish Ball
- A quite rare Poké Ball that has been crafted in order to commemorate a special occasion of some sort.
- Dive Ball
- A somewhat different Poké Ball that works especially well when catching Pokémon that live underwater.
- Dream Ball
- A special Poké Ball that appears in your Bag out of nowhere in the Entree Forest. It can catch any Pokémon.
- Dusk Ball
- A somewhat different Poké Ball that makes it easier to catch wild Pokémon at night or in dark places like caves.
- Fast Ball
- A Poké Ball that makes it easier to catch Pokémon that are usually very quick to run away.
- Friend Ball
- A strange Poké Ball that will make the wild Pokémon caught with it more friendly toward you immediately.
- Great Ball
- A good, high-performance Poké Ball that provides a higher Pokémon catch rate than a standard Poké Ball can.
- Heal Ball
- A remedial Poké Ball that restores the HP of a Pokémon caught with it and eliminates any status conditions.
- Heavy Ball
- A Poké Ball that is better than usual at catching very heavy Pokémon.
- Level Ball
- A Poké Ball that makes it easier to catch Pokémon that are at a lower level than your own Pokémon.
- Love Ball
- A Poké Ball that works best when catching a Pokémon that is of the opposite gender of your Pokémon.
- Lure Ball
- A Poké Ball that is good for catching Pokémon that you reel in with a Rod while out fishing.
- Luxury Ball
- A particularly comfortable Poké Ball that makes a wild Pokémon quickly grow friendlier after being caught.
- Master Ball
- The best Poké Ball with the ultimate level of performance. With it, you will catch any wild Pokémon without fail.
- Moon Ball
- A Poké Ball that will make it easier to catch Pokémon that can evolve using a Moon Stone.
- Nest Ball
- A somewhat different Poké Ball that becomes more effective the lower the level of the wild Pokémon.
- Net Ball
- A somewhat different Poké Ball that is more effective when attempting to catch Water- or Bug-type Pokémon.
- Park Ball
- A special Poké Ball for the Pal Park.
- Poké Ball
- A device for catching wild Pokémon. It’s thrown like a ball at a Pokémon, comfortably encapsulating its target.
- Premier Ball
- A somewhat rare Poké Ball that was made as a commemorative item used to celebrate an event of some sort.
- Quick Ball
- A somewhat different Poké Ball that has a more successful catch rate if used at the start of a wild encounter.
- Repeat Ball
- A somewhat different Poké Ball that works especially well on a Pokémon species that has been caught before.
- Safari Ball
- A special Poké Ball that is used only in the Great Marsh. It is recognizable by the camouflage pattern decorating it.
- Sport Ball
- A special Poké Ball that is used during the Bug-Catching Contest.
- Timer Ball
- A somewhat different Poké Ball that becomes progressively more effective the more turns that are taken in battle.
- Ultra Ball
- An ultra-high-performance Poké Ball that provides a higher success rate for catching Pokémon than a Great Ball.
To find the best Pokemon you’ll want to use the new DexNav system. Check out our other guide all about how to use it for tips and tricks.
During your adventure you’ll gain a wide assortment of HMs, which are moves that can be taught to Pokemon and can be used within the overworld. For example, Strength will move boulders, while Surf will let you swim across the sea. Unfortunately, until much later in the game these moves cannot be unlearned, meaning you’ve effectively taken a spot that a better move could occupy. So, the best method to get around this is to use what players refer to as an HM Slave. This is a Pokemon who is especially adept at learning HM moves and isn’t really used for anything else. Luckily Pokemon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire offer one such Pokemon rather early with Zigzagoon. This scrappy little Pokemon can even learn Surf, despite looking nothing like a swimmer. Use your Zigzagoon for the necessary HM moves and you can keep your main Pokemon free of these otherwise useless moves.
In case you are new to the series, or skipped the last entries, Pokemon X & Y, the latest major game changer is Mega Evolution. Certain Pokemon can evolve once more beyond their final form, but only during combat and only if certain conditions are met. In order to Mega Evolve the individual Pokemon must be holding its particular Mega Stone, the locations of which can be found in this guide. Once you find the Mega Stone just have the right Pokemon hold it and the option will appear at the bottom of the screen during combat. An important thing to keep in mind is that only one Pokemon can Mega Evolve during a single battle, so choose wisely if you’re facing a particularly tough opponent.
That pretty much covers the basics of how to get started in Pokemon Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire. The only other tips are to be sure to speak with everyone you can as many people will give you free items or random missions, head to the local gym if you are ready to proceed with the main story, and keep an eye on that DexNav as it will highlight what Pokemon you have caught, and others that might be in the area.