A pet fish played Pokemon Sapphire and found a new bug

First came Twitch plays Pokemon, and thanks to Japanese YouTuber Mutekimaru Channel, now there's fish plays Pokemon. And thanks to their fish, a new (or at least unreported) bug has been found in Pokemon Sapphire. 

The short highlight video above shows what may be the first instance of aquatic debugging. Mutekimaru's pet betta fish, controlling the game through a GameCube input rigged with motion tracking, reaches the Sea Cavern in Pokemon Sapphire. You need to use the Strength move to push your way through the boulders blocking the cavern. However, as the industrious betta discovered, moving the rocks in a specific combination can trigger a bug that duplicates them. Jump to 2:00 in the video above for a closer look. 

After the bug appears, Mutekimaru's Japanese stream chat speaks for every Pokemon player as it explodes into a chorus of question and exclamation marks. Did a fish really just find a new bug? Quite possibly. At the very least, to the best of my knowledge, this rock dupe bug has gone unreported in the avid Pokemon speedrunning community, which has unearthed countless exploits and glitches over the years. As Pokemon modder Eclipse_tt noted on Twitter, this bug works in both Pokemon Sapphire and Pokemon Ruby, though Pokemon Emerald still requires testing. 

Given the control scheme at work here, I can't begin to imagine the odds of this fish discovering the sequence of inputs necessary to trigger the bug. It's not just a fluke, either; you can watch Mutekimaru recreate the bug around four minutes into the video. A fish has officially contributed more to Pokemon knowledge than I have, and frankly I'm not sure how to feel about that. 

A lovely new Pokemon Sword and Shield guide explores the game's real-life inspirations. 

Austin Wood

Austin freelanced for the likes of PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and he's been with GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a senior writer is just a cover up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news and the occasional feature, all while playing as many roguelikes as possible.