Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire Guide: We’re Goin’ To Hoenn!

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As a certified nineties kid, I have been around right from the beginning of the Pokemon craze. I remember growing up with the original one-hundred and fifty-one Pokemon, I remember the Trading Card Game taking off and bugging my parents to buy me packs from the store, and I remember every single business in the world latching on to the Poke phenomenon and riding the wave.

I’m sure those Pokefans of my generation remember the days of Pokemon Mcdonald’s toys; what a time to be a kid. Well, this means that I naturally love the original generation.

However, It was the third generation of Pokemon games that truly got my full attention and turned me from a casual fan to a Pokefanatic, and even to this day, Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire remain my firm favorites across the board.

Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire dropped us smack bang in the middle of Hoenn and placed us in the middle of warring factions, Team Aqua and Team Magma. Depending on the game you chose, you would either have to stop the world from becoming an endless body of water or a dry, desolate desert, and with a little help from the legendary Pokemon Kyogre, Groudon, and Rayquaza, you’ll be able to accomplish this goal and even beat the elite four into the bargain.

However, if you are a new Pokemon player who jumped into the franchise’s more modern titles, or you just happened to miss this incredible set of titles, then this guide is just what you need.

Here we will discuss Pokemon Sapphire and Ruby’s plotline and Pokemon; we will offer a quick walkthrough of this game, we will note the key differences between each title, and much more. Enough talk, though; it’s time to leave Littleroot Town and go on a big adventure. Without further delay, here is our Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire Guide!

Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire Plot Synopsis

Let’s begin proceedings by running through the plot of Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire. Now, just to make you aware, you will witness differences in the plot based on which version of the game you purchase.

However, the main difference is that the roles of Team Magma and Aqua will switch depending on the game of choice. In Ruby, Team Magma plays the key role, whereas, in Sapphire, Team Aqua plays the bad guys. With that cleared up, let’s get into it:

An Abridged Plot Summary

The player begins in the quaint town of Littleroot Town, a tiny patch of Hoenn where the player has just moved to as your Dad Norman has landed a job as the Gym Leader at Petalburg Gym. So naturally, you will take off at the age of eleven to follow in his footsteps, surpass him and become a Pokemon master.

You begin by saving Professor Birch from a wild Poochyena attack by selecting either Treecko, Mudkip, or Torchic as your starter, and from there, you will run some basic errands, meet Professor Birch’s child, Brendan or May, depending on your chosen gender, who will serve as your main rival, then you will be granted your Pokedex and a modest sum of Pokeballs and then you are sent on your way to collect Gym Badges and build a squad of Poke-pals. You know, the usual format.

From here, you will meet another rival in Petalburg, the sickly Wally, who your father tells you to take care of along your journey, and you will travel land and sea to gather up a collection of Gym badges. However, it won’t be quite that simple, as the nefarious Team Aqua and Team Magma will serve as a roadblock in various areas.

These two entities have a grand plan to turn the world into a giant water-filled eutopia and a planet with 100% land coverage, respectively. These two teams don’t quite grasp the fact that land and water are codependent and the world is a finely crafted ecosystem.

Well, you will have to stop these organized crime syndicates full of grown men from causing environmental chaos at every turn and collect Gym badges as you go. A lot to ask of a literal child, I know.

The player will have help along the way in the form of Steven Stone, son of the president of the Devon Corporation and an avid rare stone collector, living up to his name. However, despite you being a thorn in Team Aqua/Magma’s side, they will eventually infiltrate Mt.Pyre and steal and steal the ancient Orb capable of awakening a Legendary Pokemon capable of changing the land to sea ratio of the entire planet.

It’s pretty mad they just leave these kinds of things lying around, but hey-ho. This means that you, the player, must take the counterpart to this Orb and call upon the opposing Legendary Pokemon to balance out the torrential rain or brutal UV rays and bring equilibrium back to Hoenn.

Then you can finally get back to your quest to become the Pokemon Champion. This is a very abridged version, but we don’t want to spoil all the fun for you!

Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire New Pokemon

Pokemon as a series was hitting its stride when the third generation rolled around, and the role of this new patch of Pokemon was to cement this franchise as a global brand for decades to come.

We have all seen fads come and go, but with this new wave of pocket monsters, the Pokemon series would continue to captivate audiences young and old. However, you may be unaware of which Pokemon were added in the third generation. Well, allow us to enlighten you below with the 135 Pokemon added in Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire:


  • Treecko/Grovyle/Sceptile
  • Mudkip/Marstomp/Swampert
  • Torchic/Combusken/Blaziken

General Pokemon

  • Zigzagoon/Linoone
  • Poochenya/Mightyena
  • Wurmple/Silcoon/Cascoon/Dustox/Beautifly
  • Tailow/Swellow
  • Wingull/Pelipper
  • Ralts/Kirlia/Gardevoir
  • Surskit/Masquerian
  • Shroomish/Breelom
  • Slakoth/Vigoroth/Slaking
  • Nincada/Ninjask/Sheninja
  • Whismur/Loudred/Exploud
  • Makuhita/Hariyama
  • Azurill
  • Nosepass
  • Skitty/Delcatty
  • Aron/Lairon/Aggron
  • Meditite/Medicham
  • Electrike/Manectric
  • Plusle
  • Minun
  • Volbeat
  • Illumise
  • Roselia
  • Gulpin/Swalot
  • Carvanha/Sharpedo
  • Wailmer/Wailord
  • Numel/Camerupt
  • Torkoal
  • Spoink/Grumpig
  • Spinda
  • Trapinch/Vibrava/Flygon
  • Cancea/Cacturne
  • Swablu/Altaria
  • Barboach/Whiscash
  • Corphish/Crawdaunt
  • Baltoy/Claydol
  • Lileep/Cradilly
  • Anorith/Armaldo
  • Feebas/Milotic
  • Castform
  • Kecleon
  • Shuppet/Banette
  • Duskull/Dusclops
  • Tropius
  • Chimecho
  • Absol
  • Wynaut
  • Snorunt/Glalie
  • Spheal/Sealeo/Walrein
  • Clamperl/Huntail
  • Gorebyss
  • Relicanth
  • Luvdisc
  • Bagon
  • Shelgon
  • Salamence
  • Beldum
  • Metang
  • Metagross

Ruby Exclusive Pokemon

  • Seedot/Nuzleaf/Shiftry
  • Mawile
  • Zangooze
  • Solrock

Sapphire Exclusive Pokemon

  • Lotad/Lombre/Ludicolo
  • Sableye
  • Seviper
  • Lunatone

Legendary Pokemon

  • Kyogre
  • Groudon
  • Regirock
  • Regice
  • Registeel
  • Deoxys
  • Latias
  • Latios
  • Jirachi
  • Rayquaza

3rd Gen’s Key Features

The third generation was the first game under the Pokemon umbrella that would grace the Game Boy Advance, and with the new hardware came several changes and new features, some loved, others not so much.

However, if you aren’t familiar with the mechanics of Pokemon Red, Blue, and Yellow, or their successors, Pokemon Gold, Silver, and Crystal. Then let us fill in the gaps. Here is a rundown of all the key features added in Pokemon Sapphire and Ruby:

New HMS:

For those that are unaware, as the modern Pokemon titles have done away with HMS, these were essential moves that you would need to teach your Pokemon to navigate the world. For example, you would use Flash to light up dark caves, Strength to move huge boulders, and Surf to travel across bodies of water on the back of one of your Pokemon.

Well, Ruby and Sapphire added a few more moves to the HM roster in the form of Dive and Waterfall. Dive would allow you to dive to the bottom of the deep sea and explore underwater areas. Whereas Waterfall would allow the player to ascend from the bottom of Waterfalls to the tippy-top.

These were good additions to add variety and more opportunity for exploration, as well as being pretty strong water-based moves.

Double Battles

While the opportunity to double battle in the open world of Hoenn was pretty limited, the player would, on occasion, be able to battle duos of trainers with two Pokemon at a time, adding a new battle type into the mix, and all the new tactical considerations that these battles bring.

This also meant that there was a handful of double-battle-friendly moves introduced into the game, like Encore and Follow me, as well as multi-target moves like Icy Wind and Surf.

Secret Bases

This one was a purely superficial addition but one that I appreciated and was later revamped in Alpha Sapphire and Omega Ruby. In this game, players were able to create their little hideaways and secret bases. These could be treehouses in the forest or Caves within the desert or mountains.

The player could then collect furniture and trinkets that could then be placed in the secret base as the player wished. The vast majority of these items could be bought in the Lilycove Department Store. Overall, a pointless but really fun addition.

Battle Tower

Pokemon as a series to this point had struggled to keep players engaged with the games after completing the Pokedex and finishing the in-game story. So this time, Game Freak decided to offer us more end-game content in the form of Battle Tower, a hyper-competitive arena where players could engage in a series of battles and win incredible prizes for their efforts.

This area is geared for the competitive players and not for the casual fans, but it was nice to see Game Freak cater to all types of players.

Pokemon Contests

Then lastly, we have Pokemon Contests, which are perhaps the biggest misstep of these games. This was a mode that asked players to create specific movesets of cute, cool, strong, or beautiful moves which would appeal to judges.

Then players could also use a Pokeblock machine to turn berries into buffs for these stats and help their Pokemon stand out from the pack. This was a fun idea for sure, but the execution was a little off. The contests were very RNG heavy, had no clear strategy, and would largely be decided by the order that your Pokemon performed.

What is Pokemon Emerald?

Now, you may be wondering if there was a definitive edition of these games that came along sometime later, much like Pokemon Yellow and Pokemon Crystal that came before.

Well, the definite edition, in this case, was Pokemon Emerald, a game that added some cool new features, upped the difficulty some, and allowed players access to some new areas. Here is a full rundown of the differences between Ruby/Sapphire and Pokemon Emerald:

  • New mechanics were added that allowed players to a rematch with other trainers and Gym Leaders
  • Players were granted access to the Battle Frontier, an area that offered more diverse battle arenas than the Battle Tower, plus some fun extras for those keen to explore the area
  • Players would receive a Johto starter upon completion of the main story
  • Players can get their hands on Kyogre, Groudon, and Rayquaza in one game
  • This title allows players to battle against both Team Aqua and Team Magma, as they get equal billing
  • Small quality of life changes to make the game more challenging

Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire Walkthrough

Okay, so now that you know a little bit about these 3rd gen titles, you will need a guide to help you navigate Hoenn and become a certified Pokemon League Champion.

We will admit, this game isn’t all that tricky if you take your time and level up your team accordingly, but even with a stellar team, the Pokemon League’s elite four can knock you back with ease if you aren’t careful. So let’s stick on those running shoes and get going. Here is our Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire walkthrough.

Humble Beginnings

We won’t dwell on the beginning of the game too long as this is just a series of simple errands, like picking your starter and traveling through Oldale Town to meet your rival, but you will have a rival battle to deal with here, so let’s discuss that first of all:

Rival Battle #1

Brendan and may

Brendan/May: Torchic/Treecko/Mudkip (Lv.5)

The easiest way to win this battle is to train in the tall grass for a while until you out-level your rival’s Pokemon. If you do this, the battle will be a cakewalk, but to make extra sure you walk away the victor, be sure to grab the Potion from your PC via Item Storage.

From here, you need to work your way through routes 103 and 102 until you reach Petalburg City. You won’t be able to progress until you talk to your Dad, so enter the Gym and talk to Norman. This is also when you will meet Wally, your secondary rival, for the first time.

After this section, you can proceed through Route 104, through Petalburg Woods, and the other part of Route 104. You will then find yourself in Rusboro City, where you will take on your first Gym challenge.

Gym #1 – Rusboro City Gym

Roxanne: Geodude (lv.14), Nosepass (Lv.15)

This badge is a tricky one if you selected Torchic and have been focusing solely on training your starter, but if you were smart and added a pokemon that can make short work of rock types, you will be just fine. The best Pokemon to use for this battle which is available at this point in the game would be:

  • Mudkip
  • Treecko
  • Lotad
  • Makuhita (via NPC Trade)
  • Beautifly

You will also want to try and make sure one or more of your Pokemon is level sixteen or higher to compete with Roxanne’s team.

However, outside of this, the battle is pretty straightforward. Upon winning, you will be awarded the Stone Badge and the TM for Rock Tomb. After this battle, be sure to go and grab the HM for Cut from the man in the center of the city, and then you can be on your way. Or at least you should have been if it weren’t for Team Aqua/Magma.

You will witness them robbing the Devon Corporation and fleeing along Route 116, so naturally, you seek some vigilante justice and chase them right into the Rusturf Tunnel. Defeat them and return the Devon Goods, as well as the captured Pokemon Peeko to the Sea Captain. You’ll be tasked with delivering a letter to Steven Stone in Dewford Town, and the sea captain is more than happy to take you there. Off to Dewford Town.

Gym #2 – Dewford Town Gym

Brawly: Machop (lv.17), Makuhita (Lv.18)

After you navigate the dark, narrow corridors of Brawly’s Gym, you’ll come face to face with the man himself. His team is made up of a duo of fighting-type Pokemon, so to defeat them, you would be wise to train a flying type Pokemon to do the heavy lifting here, or perhaps a strong bug Pokemon; the best options are as follows:

  • Tailow
  • Wingull
  • Nincada
  • Beautifly
  • Dustox

Once you have defeated this leader, you will be awarded the Knuckle Badge and the TM for Bulk Up. Then your next task is to deliver the letter to Steven, who is in Granite Cave. After you give this letter to Steven, he will give you the TM for Steel Wing, and then you can head back to Sea Captain Briney, who will take you onwards to Slateport.

Here you will be able to enter your first Pokemon Contest if you wish, and you will also meet the leader of Team Magma/Aqua for the first time in the Slateport Museum after you clear out all of their grunts. Only after you deal with Team Aqua/Magma will you be able to continue along route 110. This is where you will face your rival for the second time, and this time you have to win to proceed.

Rival Battle #2

Brendan/May: Grovyle/Combusken/Mudkip (Lv.20), Numel (Lv18), Shroomish (Lv.18), Wailmer (Lv.18)

Brendan/May will only have a combo of three of these Pokemon when you meet them, but it’s still your biggest challenge yet. The key here is to have some Pokemon outside of the Fire/Water/Grass typing that can offer some coverage to your starter and make short work of all these Pokemon if possible.

You want to have your starter, a strong Grass or Flying-type, and a strong Water or Rock-type for best coverage across the board. After this battle, you can proceed to Mauville City and battle the Gym Leader. Just a note, you will have to beat Wally beforehand, but since he only has a Ralts (lv.16), this shouldn’t pose any issue at all.

Gym #3 – Mauville City

Wattson: Magnemite (Lv.22), Voltorb (Lv.20), Magneton (Lv.23)

Wattson is a tricky customer, and if you have been favoring water or flying type Pokemon up until now, you will be in for a tough time unless you switch things up. What you’ll need here are Ground and Rock-type Pokemon primarily as they will deal big damage and absorb all of the electric-type attacks on offer. The best Pokemon to bring to this fight would be:

  • Combusken (With Double Kick)
  • Geodude
  • Graveller
  • Aron
  • Lairon
  • Nosepass

When you defeat Wattson, you will gain the Dynamo Badge and the TM for Shock Wave, and you should also grab the HM for Rock Smash from the house near the entrance to the city via Slateport. The next stop on the tour is Verdanturf Town, the one that was blocked by debris is Rusturf Tunnel.

Head west out of Mauville, and eventually, you will reach Verdanturf Town. You should then head into Rusturf Tunnel and clear the debris with Rock Smash. Then you will receive the HM for Strength which will be important later, and then after that, it’s off to Lavaridge Town.

However, to get there, you will have to take a long way around, which means navigating Fiery Path, Mt Chimney, Fallarbor Town, Meteor Falls, and Jagged Path before you reach the fourth Gym.

A lot of Team Aqua/Magma narrative is thrown at you during this segment, but this all leads to a rather intense battle with Leader Maxie/Archie at Mt Chimney, who intends to use the power of an Ancient Meteorite to expand the Land or Sea, depending on the team you are fighting. Here is how that battle will look:

Team Magma/Aqua Leader Battle #1

Maxie/Archie: Golbat (Lv.14) Mightyena (Lv.24), Sharpedo (Lv.25)

It doesn’t matter what team you face here, the battle remains the same, and surprisingly both teams are largely made up of Dark-types rather than Fire/Water types. To win this one, you’ll want to stack your team with Fighting, Ground, or Rock types. Here are some good options for this fight:

  • Machop
  • Makuhita
  • Geodude
  • Nosepass
  • Aron
  • Lairon
  • Vigoroth

Just be careful with the Golbat, though, as its Wing attack will deal serious damage to this team setup, so maybe throw a wildcard Pokemon in there for coverage. After this battle, you will be able to get through Jagged Pass and will finally be in Lavaridge Town.

Gym #4 – Lavaridge Town

Flannery: Slugma (Lv.26), Slugma (Lv.26), Torkoal (Lv.28)

Now onto Flannery, the Fire-type queen. This battle is one where a couple of strong water types are almost non-negotiable, as Flannery has taught these Pokemon some very powerful fire-moves, so you’ll need to be landing super-effective hits to stay one step ahead. Here is a list of good Pokemon for the occasion:

  • Marstomp
  • Tentacool
  • Tentacruel
  • Wailmer
  • Azumarrill
  • Pelipper
  • Lombre
  • Ludicolo

The two Slugma’s will go down pretty easily, but the massive hurdle to get over here is the Torkoal. This is a defensively-minded Pokemon, and it knows how to use Overheat, which will one-shot most Pokemon you throw out there, regardless of typing.

So as a contingency plan, be sure to stock some revives, and also, it can be good to have a move that lowers Torkoal’s accuracy too. When you beat Flannery, you will gain the Heat Badge and the TM for Overheat. Phew, halfway there, now to go see Daddy Norman!

Gym #5 – Petalburg City

Norman: Slaking (Lv.28), Vigoroth (Lv.30), Slaking (Lv.31)

After you make the long trip back to Petalburg Gym and battle through the various themed rooms, you’ll reach Norman, the Normal-type gym leader.

His team is very powerful and has no real weaknesses to speak of, so this Gym relies more on your tactics. However, Fighting-type Pokemon serve as the hole in his armor, so be sure to consider a few of these Pokemon:

  • Blaziken
  • Machoke
  • Hariyama
  • Medicham

The key to winning this battle is getting it over with as quickly as you can, as Norman’s Pokemon hit hard and can rest to restore health, elongating the fight and lowering your PP as a result. So make use of X-Special and X-Attack items to land killer blows and avoid getting bogged down and picked off.

Also, watch out for Vigoroth, as this Pokemon isn’t much less powerful than the two Slaking, and it doesn’t fall asleep every other turn, so it’s a real danger if not accounted for. When you win this battle, you will receive the Balance Badge and the TM for Facade.

The player should then head to Wally’s folk’s house in Petalburg and get the HM for Surf, then head back to Mauville and head east, as we are heading for Fortree City.

Along this path, you will meet up with Steven Stone again briefly, and you will also have to stop at the Weather Institute and defeat the Team Aqua/Magma grunts who intend to do some mad meteorological schemes.

However, this won’t be too much of a challenge to navigate as there is no sign of Maxie or Archie; plus, you can heal after every battle using the PC near the entrance. Then you get a Castform for your efforts which is pretty cool. However, after this area, you won’t get far before Brendan/May pops up and demands to battle, and this battle is much more of a challenge than Team Magma/Aqua Admin Courtney.

Rival Battle #3

Brendan/May: Combusken/Marstomp/Grovyle (Lv.31), Shroomish (Lv.29), Numel (Lv.29), Wailmer (Lv.29)

Just a note, the combo of Pokemon you faced in rival battle two are the ones you will encounter in rival battle three. This one requires the same approach as the second battle.

Bring along your starter, a strong Grass or Flying Type, and a strong Rock or Water-type, as well as some other Pokemon for coverage, and you should be fine here. Winning will see you rewarded with the HM for Fly, and you should have a clear run to Fortree City now.

When you reach Fortree Gym, however, you will notice that there is an invisible blockage preventing you from entering. No big deal, just keep moving west and along Route 120 until you meet Steven Stone again.

He will explain that there are sometimes invisible Pokemon that block pathways, and with the help of a new item called the Devon Scope, the player can then reveal Kecleons and battle or catch them, up to you. Head back to Fortree Gym and take care of the Kecleon, and then head into the Gym.

Gym #6 – Fortree City Gym

Winona: Swellow (Lv.31), Pelipper (Lv.30), Skarmory (Lv.30), Altaria (Lv.33)

You would think that Altaria would be the Pokemon that proves to be the biggest test in this battle, but due to Skarmory’s strange typing and Steel-type moves, this Pokemon tends to cause players the most problems. So be sure to take a Fire or Rock-type to manage this Pokemon.

Otherwise, a strong electric type will do a lot of the heavy lifting. It’s also worth noting that you’ll want to take down Altaria fast, as this Pokemon knows Featherdance, and if given time to stack these, it can spell the end of your Gym challenge. When you beat Winona, you will gain the Feather Badge and will also receive the TM for Aerial Ace.

You will then need to head along Route 120 again and follow this path until you reach Lilycove City. Now, you can battle your rival here, as they will stop you when you try to enter the Lilycove Department Store, but it isn’t an essential battle, nor is it any different in terms of tactics from the last two rival battles.

So you decide if you want to take them on. What you need to do, is head to Mt.Pyre. This is where Team Aqua/Magma are in the process of stealing an ancient Red/Blue Orb, and you have to rush in and try to stop them.

Long story short, you don’t, and Archie/Maxie gets away with the Orb, and you are entrusted with its sister orb. You must then follow Team Aqua/Magma to Slateport, which is a pointless venture, as you only get there in time to watch them sail away to their Underwater Hideout, stealing a submarine in the process.

Be sure to teach a Pokemon Fly; otherwise, all the traveling back and forth will infuriate you. From here, you must head back to Liliycove City and infiltrate their Hideout.

Here you will be able to gather some cool items like a Master Ball, and you will have to beat a Team Aqua/Magma Admin, but much like the last one in the Weather Institute, they offer a pretty routine battle. However, now that you have defeated them, you can travel east along Route 124, and the whole map of Hoenn, aside from HM-specific areas, is now explorable. Off to Mosedeep City then!

Gym #7 – Mosedeep City

Tate and Liza: Lunatone (Lv.42), Solrock (Lv.42)

It was only a matter of time before the game decided to throw the double battle gimmick into a Gym battle scenario, and as far as double battles go, this one is tricky. Lunatone and Solrock are sturdy Pokemon that can take a beating, and because they are primarily Psychic Pokemon, their typing is tough to takedown. The main weaknesses that these Pokemon have are Ghost-type moves, Water Type moves, and Dark-type moves. So it can be a good idea to visit Mt Pyre and stock up on some new Poke-pals. Here is a couple of Pokemon to consider:

  • Swampert
  • Sceptile
  • Ludicolo
  • Absol
  • Mightyena
  • Duskull
  • Shuppet
  • Banette
  • Skarmory

It is also worth considering moves that have multi-effects. The best example of this is perhaps Surf; as one of your Pokemon will know this anyway, it will be super effective against this duo, and it’s a relatively powerful multi-effect move. Muddy Water is another good option.

When you beat Tate and Liza, you will receive the Mind Badge and will also get the TM containing Calm Mind. Oh, and you can use Dive now outside of battle, which means you can head to the final Gym location, Sootopolis City. However, you won’t be able to fight Wallace until you deal with the pressing Team Magma/Aqua issue. So instead, you’ll need to dive underwater and locate the Seafloor Cavern, the home of Kyogre or Groudon. 

You will have to use strength to navigate through this area, and you will also have to battle with Admin Courtney for a second time; however, the real challenge is battling with Archie/Maxie for the second and final time. Here is how that battle shapes up.

Team Aqua/Magma Leader Battle #2

Maxie/Archie: Mightyena (Lv.41), Crobat (Lv.41), Camerupt/Sharpedo (Lv.43) 

This battle’s tactics remain largely the same as the first battle at Mt.Chimney, only this time; you will need to bring a counter to the Camelrupt. A strong water-type Pokemon is an obvious choice here; then, you can also bring along fighting and rock-type Pokemon to deal with the lower level Dark types in this opposing team.

After this battle, the Orb lights up, and things get pretty disastrous from there, as the weather in Hoenn gets super intense, and Steven Stone turns up to help you workshop a plan to solve this issue before the planet is destroyed. 

You must now head to Sootopolis City, and here, you will meet Steven and Gym Leader Wallace, who will grant you access to the Cave of Origin, an area that serves as a home to the counterpart of the Legendary Pokemon you encountered in the Seafloor Caverns.

Your job is to wake the beast with the Orb in your inventory and then tame it, either by battling the Legendary Pokemon or catching it. We would suggest dropping a save before and stocking up on lots of Ultra Balls, or failing that, use the Master Ball you grabbed earlier. 

This then leads to a climax in the Team Magma/Aqua saga where Groudon and Kyogre come to blows, and with the help of another ancient Pokemon, Rayquaza, they achieve a state of equilibrium, and the climate returns to normal, Team Aqua and Magma apologize and say how silly they were, and just like that, the chaos is over. Well, with that all wrapped up, shall we go get that final badge? 

Gym #8 – Sootopolis City

Wallace: Luvdisc (Lv.40), Whiscash (Lv.42), Sealeo (Lv.40), Seaking (Lv.42), Milotic (Lv.43)

Wallace is the water-type Pokemon Gym Leader, and as a result, unless you picked Treecko at the beginning of the game, you will need to make sure that you bring along a Pokemon that serves as a natural counter. This means that a Grass-type or an Electric Type would be ideal. Here is a list of excellent Pokemon to take with you: 

  • Sceptile
  • Manectric 
  • Magneton
  • Raichu
  • Tropius
  • Shiftry
  • Cacturne
  • Breelom
  • Jolteon
  • Ampharos

The key thing to remember about this fight is that Wallace has access to Ice-type Pokemon, too, so it can be quite helpful to have a fire-type or steel-type Pokemon on the team to lend a hand in a pinch.

However, if you avoid getting endlessly confused by Water Pulses, you should be fine with anything other than a fire-based or rock/ground-based team. When you defeat Wallace, you will get the Rain Badge, be able to use Waterfall outside of battle, and will also get the TM for Water Pulse. 

You will now be able to take on the Pokemon League, which means you’ll need to head over to Ever Grande, get your butt up that waterfall, and take on Victory Road. Victory Road is a labyrinth, and it will take a while for players to navigate this area, but outside of a few tricky trainers and some boulder puzzles, it isn’t too stressful.

When you reach the end, you will be stopped in your tracks by Wally, who is a lot tougher than when we last faced him outside Mauville Gym, and of course, he demands a battle. 

Wally Victory Road Battle

Wally: Gardevoir (LV.45), Delcatty (Lv.43), Altaria (Lv.44), Magneton (Lv.41), Roselia (Lv.44) 

Wally is by far the most varied and strongest team that you have come up against so far, and because it’s a shock that he has even shown up here, you have no idea what kind of team he will come at you with. Well, you have his signature Ralts turned Gardevoir, and then a miss of Grass, Electric, Dragon, and normal types.

It’s best to come at this battle with a range of Pokemon and lots of coverage. You’ll want a strong fire-type, a ground/rock type, an Ice-type, a Fighting-type, and a ghost-type pokemon. Just use these typings at the right time, and Wally will be a breeze to beat.

That being said, with a level 60 Kyogre/Groudon in your ranks, you may just steamroll through his team with your legendary alone. Now, all that stands before you is the Pokemon League challenge. 

The Pokemon League Challenge 

Now we have the Pokemon League to deal with. This is a series of five battles with some of the most powerful trainers in the game, and you will not be allowed to heal after each battle. So you will need to stock up on Hyper Potions, Full Heals, Revives, and you will need to bring all Ethers and Elixirs, too.

Also, we will be discussing the ideal scenario for every battle, but you will only have six team slots, so you need to take aspects of these suggestions and amalgamate them for the best results. Usually, one very strong counter for each member and two coverage Pokemon tends to be the best approach. Okay, let’s jump in: 

Elite Four Battle #1 – Sidney

Sidney: Mightyena (Lv.46), Sharpedo (Lv.46), Cacturne (Lv.48), Shiftry (Lv.49), Absol (Lv.49)

We begin with the Dark-type Elite Four specialist, Sidney. Sidney poses quite a threat to players that have invested time training Psychic Pokemon or Ghost Pokemon, so leave them on the bench if you have them with you. Instead, you’ll want to pack a strong fighting Pokemon to dominate this fight, or a Bug Pokemon can work too. Here are some suggestions:

  • Machamp
  • Hariyama
  • Primeape 
  • Poliwrath
  • Blaziken
  • Breelom
  • Heracross

We would also suggest you pack a fire-type Pokemon too, as this will help make short work of Shiftry and Cacturne. Okay, onto the next battle! 

Elite Four Battle #2 – Phoebe

Phoebe: Dusclops (Lv.48), Banette (Lv.49), Banette (Lv.49), Sableye (Lv.50), Dusclops (Lv.51)

Jinkies, a ghost! Well, five ghost-type Pokemon, to be exact, which all pack a punch. You’ll want to avoid sending out any Fighting-type Pokemon, normal-type Pokemon, or Psychic Pokemon.

Plus, while Ghost-type Pokemon will be able to land super-effective moves, they will also be vulnerable, making them an unreliable choice. The best course of action is going with a Dark-type Pokemon that can rattle through this team and eat any hits that come its way. Here are a few suggestions: 

  • Absol
  • Sharpedo
  • Mightyena
  • Gyarados
  • Cacturne 
  • Crawdaunt
  • Umbreon
  • Murkrow 
  • Shiftry

Just watch out for the ice-type coverage that the strongest Dusclops is packing, and be sure to take out the Banette’s super fast to avoid getting hit with Spite and losing PP, as this can be a killer later in the run. Okay, onto number three! 

Elite Four Battle #3 – Glacia

Glacia: Glalie (Lv.50), Sealeo (Lv.50), Sealeo (Lv.52), Glalie (Lv.52), Walrein (Lv.53)

As her name suggests, Glacia is an Ice-queen, and her Pokemon are all Ice and Water Types. Now, it can be tempting to bring along fire types to combat the Ice-Pokemon, but because of the water coverage, you will get wiped out pretty quickly, so instead, you should go with a strong electric Pokemon or two, or failing that, a very strong Water-Type like Kyogre that can absorb hits and then use alternative move coverage to wipe these Ice/Water pokemon out slowly but surely.

This can be a huge waste of PP, though. Here are the Pokemon we would consider the ideal candidates:

  • Raichu
  • Ampharos
  • Magneton
  • Electabuzz
  • Jolteon
  • Manectric
  • Lanturn

We should also mention that there is a small chance that Walrein could one-shot your Pokemon with Sheer Cold, so have some revives on hand, just in case. Plus, most of these Pokemon have Dark-type coverage, so be aware of that, too. Alright, only one more Elite Four member left now!

Elite Four Battle #4 – Drake 

Drake: Shelgon (lv.52), Altaria (Lv.54), Flygon (Lv.53), Flygon (Lv.53), Salamence (Lv.55) 

To round off the Elite Four, we have a Dragon Pokemon specialist, as is customary in the early Pokemon titles. When it comes to taking on multiple Dragon Types, it’s mostly about bringing a lot of powerful Pokemon rather than anything else, as Dragons are hard to takedown with tactics alone.

There is the option of bringing a Dragon of your own to the party, as this means that you will land super-effective hits, but it also makes you just as vulnerable. So, instead, we would suggest a Steel-type that will absorb the dragon-type moves or an ice-type that will deal huge damage. Here is a list of good options for this battle:

  • Skarmory
  • Walrein
  • Glalie
  • Dewgong
  • Cloyster
  • Lapras
  • Jynx
  • Piloswine
  • Mawile
  • Magneton
  • Steelix
  • Aggron

The only other consideration would be that the last two Pokemon listed have the move flamethrower, meaning that if you do rely on an Ice-type, you may run into trouble, so be sure to either land the first blow or have a backup plan in mind. Okay, only the Grand Champion of Hoenn awaits, and, wait, is that Steven Stone? 

Grand Champion Battle – Steven Stone

Steven Stone: Skarmory (Lv.57), Aggron (Lv.56), Claydol (Lv.55), Metagross (Lv.58), Cradily (Lv.56), Armaldo (Lv.56)

Naturally, the Pokemon Champion battle is going to be the hardest test of them all, and if you are depleted with no Ether or Elixirs to restore PP, you are in for a tough time as Steven has a varied and hard-hitting team. However, if you have weathered the Elite Four storm, then you might just have a chance.

For best results, you will want a Fire-type to deal with the Steel Pokemon on his team, you will want a Ground Type to wipe out his Aggron, and then the rest can be taken care of with a strong water type. So if you are playing Sapphire, Kyogre, Blaziken, and an Aggron of your own would be an option, and for Ruby players, Groudon, Swampert, and Aggron are the way to go.

Then you can stock up with varied Pokemon that offer some coverage. Here is the team that I would personally go with:

  • Swampert
  • Groudon
  • Aggron
  • Flygon
  • Camerupt
  • Walrein

If you manage to take down Steven, then all that’s left to say is congrats, Pokemon Champion of Hoenn!

Embark on a Gem of an Adventure!

As you can see from the information above, Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire was a real step forward for the Pokemon series and not only introduced players to some fun new Pokemon and core mechanics but also a riveting storyline with an environmental focus.

This game is truly one of the all-time standout Pokemon titles, not only because of the abundance of fan-favorite Pokemon additions to the roster but also due to the incredible setting. We hope that this guide has given you all the info you need to take the plunge and dive into the 3rd generation, and as always, thank you for reading Pokuniverse!

Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire Guide: FAQs

Question: What is The Hardest Gym in Hoenn?

Answer: It depends on how you get up your team and what types you prioritize, not to mention your starter choice. However, of all the gyms, I would say that either Norman or Tate, and Liza pose the biggest threat to the player, relative to when you face them within the game. Not because they are particularly difficult, but more because the other Gym leaders are pushovers by comparison. 

Question: How Can I Play Pokemon Ruby/Sapphire In 2022?

Answer: If you are lucky enough to own an original GBA cartridge for one of these games, you can play this with a GBA, a Game Boy Advance SP, or a Nintendo DS. Failing that, though, there are ROM Hacks that you can download online, and with an emulation software or app, you can play these games on most modern devices like your smartphone or PC. Or, you could go for the more modern remake of these games titled Pokemon Alpha Sapphire and Omega Ruby. You can play both of these titles on the Nintendo 3DS. 

Question: When Did Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire First Release? 

Answer: These two games would both be released on the 21st of November 2002, ahead of the holiday season. Then it would not be until the 16th of September 2004 that we would get the ‘definitive edition’ of these games, Pokemon Emerald. 

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