Grant Haack, who goes by Snip3r95 on Imgur, found an old Pokémon cartridge while wandering around a flea market. The game only set them back $5, but actually getting the Game Boy classic up and running required some serious elbow grease.
“It was at the bottom of a bin and in pretty bad shape,” Haack wrote in a post on Imgur documenting the project. The game wouldn’t properly boot up, so they unscrewed the back and dismantled the game to reveal a bunch of dirt and rust underneath.
“Jesus, I’ve never seen a game this corroded before,” continued Haack. “The leads on the chip in the bottom right are almost completely eroded away, many of the posts are just straight up gone. Also, hmm...no save battery. Someone’s worked on this before.”
In order to try and fix the game, Haack de-capped the chip with a heat gun, and set to work on trying to replace the leads going into it.
Most interestingly, they found replacements for the leads by pillaging an old rumble motor from a PS2 controller.
They then set to soldering the chip back onto the circuit board and afterwards reassembled the cartridge.
The game worked, without even blowing it! For anyone without an old Pokémon Red Game Boy cart or the means to fix one even if they did, the game is still available on the 3DS Virtual Console for twice what Haack paid.