How To Spot A Fake Pokemon GBA Game
With all the games on the market, its hard to know which ones are real. Especially GameBoy Advance games. For example, Pokemon games for GameBoy Advance are heavily counter fitted. Joe Blo at the swap meet may be selling Pokemon Emerald for $5, while another guy is selling them for $10. Sometimes, the $5 one is fake, and the $10 one is real. The counter fitter expects people to go with him because they're cheaper, but people may not realize they're getting a fake game. This guide will teach you some pretty easy methods of spotting a fake, and will save you a lot of time debating who's selling the real one.
NOTE: A lot of these photos were borrowed from online resources, click the picture for the source when applicable.
Here is a down loadable version of this guide in case you want to take it to a swap meet and want to buy smartly.
The person selling the game, usually online, should be glad to say that the game comes from the U.S. On eBay, a lot of game retailers may say, "Ships from Hong Kong", or "Ships from Malaysia", or "Item located outside the U.S.A." The bottom line, most phony copies come from Asia, or some other country outside the U.S. If the game comes from anyplace other then the U.S, don't buy it. Thats not to say that the seller may also get them from China, and say its a U.S copy, but just the location given is a good enough giveaway as to what you may be buying. This is just a small example though, I'm mostly going to be showing though, how a game is fake. Feel free though to use this as a random tip.
There are many things that show the telltale signs of a fake. Here is a list of things that may help in spotting one. I will try to put as many photos as possible.
The label should be pretty obvious as to which one is a fake. Real Pokemon games will usually have a foil-ish / holographic type label. It should be metallic, not just glossy. Many forgers fail to do this. Use the following photos as a reference.
The lettering should also be clear and visible. There will be no typos or smudging (besides wear and tear) on real labels. Fake ones will usually have this. A real cartridge will also have a Nintendo seal of quality, which some fakes do not have. If you do not see this label on the game, do not buy it.
Not to mention that a real label will also have about 5 tiny letters and numbers embossed onto it. These are not on fakes. Tilt the label to the light to see these.
A Pokemon game cartridge will be the same color as the game. For example, Pokemon FireRed will be a solid light red, and Pokemon Emerald will be transparent green. It should never be black or gray, the exceptions are Pokemon Pinball and the Pokemon Trading Card Game which were for GBC. Other then that, it will always be its corresponding color.
GBA Pokemon Game Color
FireRed - Light Red Cartridge
LeafGreen - Light Green Cartridge
Ruby - Clear Red Cartridge
Sapphire - Clear Blue Cartridge
Emerald - Clear Green Cartridge
GameBoy Color / Original
Pokemon Red - Red Cartridge
Pokemon Blue - Blue Cartridge
Pokemon Yellow Yellow Cartridge
Pokemon Silver - Silver Cartridge
Pokemon Gold - Gold Cartridge
Pokemon Crystal - Crystal Sparkly Light Blue Cartridge
GameBoy Color / Original
Pokemon Pinball - Black
Pokemon Trading Card Game - Black
A real Pokemon game will be rated E. It will have this in the bottom left corner of the game. A fake will either have the wrong rating, or none at all. Do not buy one rated RP, that means rating pending, which is only on non released games. A game is never released with this rating.
An official licensed GBA game, will always have the Nintendo logo on the upper area near the contacts. It will be visible when tilting the cartridge upside down and looking in it. This is just to make it easier to see. The following photos explain what I'm talking about.
The Save Feature
Fake Pokemon games are notorious for save malfunctions. Notice above how the fake game has a battery. This is to keep the save alive, unlike the GBC games, the GBA games usually don't rely on a battery. Starting from Ruby and Sapphire, the battery was only to keep the internal clock going. FireRed and LeafGreen do not use batteries at all as there is no clock. The above photo shows a real FireRed with no battery. The saves were on flash memory, so they were not affected when the time battery died. Later on, they stopped using them altogether.
The Game May Not Even Exist!!!!
Believe it or not, people even hack versions of the game and market it as a game that a lot of people don't even know is not real!!!! Below is a list of these non existent games. I will try to list as many as possible, but new ones come out all the time.
Examples Of Common Non Existent Games
The bottom line is that you should be careful when buying games from eBay, Amazon, or even the flea market. Just be cautious and use good judgment. Along with this guide, you should now have the necessary information to buy games with knowledge. Thank you for reading this and have a happy gaming experience!!!!