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The original generation of Pokémon games still holds a very special place in fans’ hearts. Pokémon Red, Blue & Green had their quirks for sure—wrap, sleep and other moves/mechanics were utterly broken—but they kick-started a phenomenon that’s still going strong over two decades later.
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As such, it’s no surprise that old hands continue to return to Generation I, or that newer players take a trip back in time to see what they’ve missed. Remakes Pokémon FireRed & LeafGreen are probably the best way to experience the world of Kanto and the original 150(/151) critters, but there’s one common question new players, as well as rusty experienced ones, ask: where do I get the Fly HM? Here’s an easy-to-follow guide to help you out.
10 Defeat Misty’s Gym In Cerulean City
While there are two other Kanto Gym Leaders closer to the Fly HM, fan-favorite Misty begins the player’s quest for Fly proper. She’s only the second Gym Leader in the game, but she’s the one who must be defeated to unlock the ability to use Cut outside of battle.
As such, you know what to do: march in there with the strongest critters you can muster—ideally Grass- or Electric-types—and take down her Staryu (level 18) and Starmie (level 21). They don’t have anything in the way of STAB beyond Water Pulse, so this shouldn’t be too taxing.
Now that you’re armed with the ability to use Cut in the overworld, you’ll want to actually have the HM for it. That would certainly be helpful. Off to Vermilion City, then, where the sickly Captain of the S.S. Anne awaits your back-rubbing relief.
With the ticket from Bill nabbed, the ship explored and the HM in hand, you’ll find yourself in the city of Vermilion with another Gym Leader to defeat: Lt. Surge, the Electric-type expert. Use Cut on the tree here, enter the gym, and dispatch his Voltorb, Pikachu, and Raichu however you choose, though, again, a Grass-type will be useful in the absence of any real Ground-type power at this point. Victory here grants you the ability to use Fly on the overworld!
This step is strictly optional. After all, some players know Rock Tunnel like the backs of their hands. If that’s the case, the Flash HM really isn’t going to serve much purpose for you, as it’s a terrible battle move in and of itself.
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The cave is a little infamous among the fanbase, though, so it might be best to make a quick detour over to Route 2 via Diglett’s Cave to pick up Flash and allow you to illuminate the upcoming dungeon.
Whether you have Flash or you’re confident enough not to, Rock Tunnel is your next destination. Route 9 and 10 stand in your way, but follow the relatively gentle path—we’re still quite early in the game, after all—and you’ll soon be there.
This cave is one of the trickiest areas so far, so try not to get disorientated. There’s really only one path to follow, so familiarize yourself with your surroundings as far as you can and recognize if you’re traveling in circles... which you probably will be the first time around. Persevere, make sure you’ve got a stock of Repels in hand, and you’ll be at the exit in no time!
With Rock Tunnel out of the way, you’ll find yourself in Lavender Town. There are lots of spooky goings-on surrounding enigmatic Ghost Pokémon to deal with here, but we’re going to put that on the backburner for now. We’ve got a Fly HM to find.
As such, you’ll want to take the western exit out of Lavender Town from Route 8 to the short underground path to Route 7. Pass through this route, and you’ll find yourself back in Celadon.
This will just be a flying visit—pun intended—as you’ve now got everything you need from Celadon to get yourself airborne. Sorry, everyone, no time to stop and chat now!
Head straight through and pass onto Route 16. Here, you’ll find the infamous and meme-worthy path-blocking powerhouse, Snorlax, which you’re welcome to wake up and battle if you have the Poké Flute from Lavender Town already. If not, no bother, as we don’t need to pass it, anyway. Instead, head back and use Cut on the tree you see here.
If you’re getting the feeling that you’ve found a bit of a secret area, that’s because you have. An NPC along this passageway will congratulate you on having made your way through here, commenting that few people do.
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This is a neat little hint about what’s to come. Proceed through the gatehouse, and you’ll arrive in a tiny grassy area in the middle of nowhere. Congratulations, the Fly HM is almost yours!
In any RPG, stumbling onto a secluded area tends to mean one of two things: either you’re about to be set upon by a miniboss or mobs you’re just not strong enough for yet, or you’re about to find something valuable.
The Fly HM is certainly valuable, being optional but a huge, huge timesaver. That’s what you came here for, so enter this house and claim your prize!
All that’s left to down now is to speak to this small house’s only occupant. She’ll tell you that this is her secret hideaway and beg you not to tell anybody where she is. In return, she’ll give you the Fly HM!
Who exactly is this young woman, and why all the secrecy? Maybe she’s a Kanto celebrity trying to avoid being mobbed by fans. Maybe she got herself into one too many random battles with Zubat and has sworn off all contact from any other living creature ever—if you’ve ever run out of Repels in a cave, you’ll understand. Whatever the case, the Fly HM is all yours and the backtracking was all worth it. There are a couple more things to bear in mind, though.
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Now, this may have seemed like a bit of a roundabout way to grab the HM, but it’s the earliest and most efficient way to both collect the HM and be able to use it as more than just an in-battle move. After all, you can’t fly to any previously visited town before you’ve defeated Lt. Surge and claimed the Thunder Badge.
Finally, Gen I newcomers will need to know that HMs must be taught to a party member to be used, rather than Pokémon Sun & Moon’s Ride Pager system or Pokémon Sword & Shield’s convenient fast-travel system. Unsurprisingly, Fly is for Flying-types, so make sure you’ve got one in your party. With that done, teach them the move—remember that HMs can only be replaced by the Move Deleter, who is found in the house by Fuschia City’s Pokémon Center in FireRed & LeafGreen—and enjoy the convenience of Fly!
NEXT: Pokémon: The 10 Best Flying Moves, Ranked
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