How to Transfer Pokémon between Generations in a Generationlocke

This guide was written by Reddit user u/JackJinxed. They refer to the Generationlocke challenge as a “Genlocke”, another common name for the variant.


Transferring your Champs to the next Leg in a Genlocke may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be with the help of this guide. This will not be covering Pokémon Red/Blue/Yellow or Pokémon Gold/Silver/Crystal because those Pokémon cannot be transferred to generation three games.

You will need:

  • At least 2 Pokémon games per generation
  • A DS
  • A 3DS
  • Pokémon Bank
  • Pokémon Home

Transferring from Generation Three to Generation Four

In order to transfer Pokemon from the generation three Games (Pokémon Ruby, Sapphire and Emerald) and the generation one remakes (Pokémon Fire Red and Leaf Green) you will need a Nintendo DS with a Game Boy Advanced cartridge slot. These Pokemon will go to Pokémon Home via one of the generation four games (Pokémon Diamond, Pearl and Platinum) or one of the generation two remakes (Pokémon Heart Gold and Soul Silver) so you’ll need one of those Nintendo DS games too.

In-game requirements

If you’re transferring to Pokémon Diamond and Pearl, you need to ensure you’ve seen every Pokémon in the Sinnoh Pokédex (150 excluding Manaphy), then spoken to Professor Rowan in Sandgem Town to obtain the National Pokédex.

In Pokémon Platinum, you just need to obtain the standard Pokédex from Professor Rowan in Sandgem Town and ensure you have at least two Pokémon in your party.

For Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver, defeat the Elite Four and enter the Hall of Fame, then attempt to board the S.S Aqua to receive the National Pokédex.

How to trade

Before you trade any Pokémon on from the GBA games, be aware that this is a one-way trade. This means you cannot trade Pokémon back to these games, so make sure you’re prepared to not see any of the Pokémon you trade in the GBA games again.

To begin the trade, insert both the Game Boy Advanced game and Nintendo DS game of your choice into the console. Boot up the Nintendo DS game and select the “Migrate from [Game Boy Advanced game name]” option in the menu. Say “Yes” to the option to migrate, then select six Pokémon to transfer.

Load up your save game in the Nintendo DS game then head to the Pal Park. In Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum, the Pal Park location can be found on Route 221. In HeartGold and SoulSilver, you need to go to Fuchsia City. One tip before heading to the Pal Park however is to bring a Pokémon that knows Surf, since some areas are inaccessible without it.

Participate in a Catching Show and you’ll be given six Park Balls. These are only usable in the Pal Park but catch a Pokémon every time without fail. Explore the tall grass and the six Pokémon you’ve transferred from the GBA games will eventually appear, and you can catch them all, at which point you’ll be asked if you want to store them in a box.

Transferring from Generation Four to Generation Five

Now you’ve got the Pokémon you want to trade up to Pokémon Home on one of the generation four games or the generation two remakes, it’s time to get them onto Pokémon Black, White, Black 2, or White 2 (generation five). Once again, this is a one-way transfer so you can’t transfer them back once they’ve been brought forward.

In order to do this trade, you need to have two Nintendo DS consoles. One console needs to have the generation four game inserted, while the other needs the generation five game.

In-game requirements

In any of the four generation five games, you need to ensure you’ve beaten the Elite Four and entered the Hall of Fame. Then head to the Poké Transfer Lab on Route 15. Talk to the scientist at the top of the lab.

How to trade

Once you’ve done that, select the option to use another Nintendo DS then select DS Wireless Communications. Turn on the other console and select DS Download Play. Select the game with the same ID number as your generation five game in the first console, then select Yes. Pick the six Pokémon you wish to transfer across then you’ll be introduced to a minigame.

To complete the minigame, simply drag the stylus around the touch screen to pull the Poké Ball back as if you were throwing it, and pay attention to the top of the screen to see where the ball will end up. Release the stylus from the screen to throw the ball and if there’s any Pokémon hiding in a bush, use a ball to nudge them out of it. When a pink cloud appears towards the end of the game, hit it with a ball to cause all the remaining Pokemon to fall asleep. When the minigame finishes, make sure you select “Yes” to transfer them on to the generation five game, otherwise they’ll go back to whichever game they came from. From there, the Pokémon will be sent to your PC on Black, White, Black 2, or White 2.

Transferring Pokemon from Generation Five to Generation Six and/or Generation Seven

Thankfully, when you’ve got your Pokémon onto any of the games above, the process becomes much simpler thanks to the use of Pokémon Bank. You need a Pokémon Bank subscription to make this work. Make sure you have it downloaded and purchased, then open and sign in to the app. Select the appropriate game from the list above and your boxes from that game will be displayed on the touch screen.

Above that on the upper screen is where you’ll see your Pokémon Bank boxes and you can use the controls to move the respective Pokemon over. When you’re done transferring all the Pokémon you want in Pokémon Home, simply save and exit.

Pokémon Bank

Now you’ve brought your Pokémon from any game of your choice all the way to Pokémon Bank, but how do you get them from there onto Pokémon Home (and into Pokémon Sword and Shield)?

Boot up Pokémon Bank and on the main menu should be the fairly self-explanatory option “move Pokémon to Pokémon Home”. Now you need to get yourself a Moving Key, which is where you’ll need to use Pokémon Home on the Nintendo Switch.

On the main menu, select the 3DS icon underneath the Pokédex option. Make sure you have a premium Pokémon Home subscription, then select Begin Move. This will display a Moving Key which expires in three minutes, so type it into Pokémon Bank on your Nintendo 3DS quick time. When you type it in and hit enter, the transfer will commence and Pokémon Home will become unusable for the duration. When it’s done, you can choose whether to bring across all the boxes, or individual Pokémon from each box.

Transferring Pokémon from Generation Six and/or Generation Seven to Generation Eight

Since Pokémon Sword and Shield and Pokémon Let’s Go Pikachu and Let’s Go Eevee are on the Nintendo Switch, the process for transferring Pokémon from those games to Pokémon Home is considerably easier. Be wary that while Pokémon from Let’s Go can be moved to Sword and Shield, they can’t then be transferred back to Let’s Go; only Sword and Shield have the ability to transfer to and from.

On Pokémon Home – as long as you’re using it on the same Nintendo Switch console as your Pokémon Sword and Shield or Pokémon Let’s Go save files – select Pokemon from the main menu.  This will display your relevant save files, and selecting either one will show your Pokémon Home boxes on the left along with your in-game boxes on the right. Drag and drop any Pokémon you like from one to the other, then hit + to save. Any Pokémon that aren’t currently in the Pokémon Sword and Shield Pokédex cannot be brought forward into it though.


This guide was written by Reddit user u/JackJinxed. Interested in trying out a Generationlocke? Check out our Generationlocke page for information and rules, or see our Nuzlocke variants page for more ways to play. And be sure to check out our Guides and Articles section for tier lists, tips, Pokémon rankings, and more!

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