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The {{player}} starts their journey in [[Littleroot Town]], where the family has just moved from the [[Johto]] region after the player's father, [[Norman]], became the leader of the [[Petalburg Gym]]. The story starts off with the player riding in the moving van, which arrives in Littleroot. After exiting the van, the player's mother explains that they have just arrived at their new home; they then enter the house together, and there are {{p|Machoke}} movers carrying boxes. The player's mother suggests that the player introduce themselves to [[Professor Birch]], a friend of Norman's.
Upon arriving at Birch's house, his wife greets the player, and upstairs the player meets May or Brendan (the alternate-gender player character of the player), the child of Professor Birch; after the introduction, she or he soon leaves to join Birch, who is out in the field. The player then finds Birch on {{rt|101|Hoenn}}, where he is being chased by a wild {{p|Poochyena}}. Birch asks the player to take a {{i|Poké Ball}} out of his bag, which is lying on the ground; the player then chooses between {{p|Treecko}}, {{p|Mudkip}}, and {{p|Torchic}} as their [[starter Pokémon]]. After choosing, a battle immediately begins with the wild Poochyena. After rescuing Birch, he lets the player keep the chosen Pokémon as thanks for saving him. He then tells the player to meet up with his kid on {{rt|103|Hoenn}} for pointers on how to be a Trainer.
Upon loading the saved game, the story continues with the Delta Episode. The episode revolves around a meteoroid that is on course for collision with the planet and a newly developed character, Zinnia.
After completing the Delta Episode, the player is returned to Littleroot Town. Downstairs, [[Norman]] gives the player the [[S.S. Ticket]] to take the [[S.S. Tidal]] over to the [[Battle Resort]], and the player unlocks the [[Hoenn League]]'s rematch teams.