Ethan encounters a Shiny Charizard

Ethan encounters a Shiny Charizard.

Shiny Pokémon (ポケモンの光る Pokemon no Hikaru) are Pokémon with different coloration than the normal versions of the Pokémon although they have no stat differences at all. Shiny Pokémon have been included since Generation II in Gold and Silver in which the first shiny Pokémon that was introduced was a Red Gyarados. Shiny Pokémon are considered very rare. The term "shiny" is a reference to their difference in color and their sparkling animation and sound effect when they enter into battle. The term was unofficial prior to Generation V, when the Pokédex began cataloging shiny Pokémon and using the term itself.


The color change can be anywhere from very noticeable, e.g. Charizard:

Charizard XY
Normal Charizard
Charizard Shiny XY
Shiny Charizard

Other shiny Pokémon are very similar to their normal versions, such as Clefable.

Clefable XY
Normal Clefable
Clefable Shiny XY
Shiny Clefable


In Generation II, a Pokémon randomly assigned 5 integers between 0 and 15 to determine their base stats. (HP, Attack, Defense, Special, and Speed). If all 5 numbers are equal to 10, the Pokémon's color scheme will be set to 0. The chance of seeing a shiny Pokémon is 1 in every 8192, or a probability of 0.01220703% during each encounter. From Generation III onwards, shiny Pokémon are determined by other factors such as the Trainer ID number and the personality value of the Pokémon. Despite this change, the odds of randomly encountering a shiny Pokémon is still 1 in 8192. As of Pokémon Black 2 and Pokémon White 2, the Shiny Charm can be obtained to significantly increase chances of encountering a shiny Pokémon. This stacks with most methods listed below.

Shiny Locked

In every generation, there are some Pokémon that can't be legally Shiny, Starting for Generation V, there is a coding in the games that prevent certain Pokémon from being found in the Shiny form in the wild though legitimate ways, they are always Legendary, Mythical and other event Pokémon, they are:


There are a few different methods to increase the chances of obtaining a shiny Pokémon.

Chaining (Gen IV)

This method uses the Pokéradar in Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, X and Y to encounter chains of the same Pokémon. Here's a few tips (Non-Gen VI):

  • If the bush just shakes, it is a Sinnoh Pokémon.
  • If the bush has a whitish shake, it might be a non-native Pokémon.
  • Never use it in water, caves, or tall grass.
  • The bush with the same type of shake as the first Pokémon one has battled that is the farthest away within a four by four grid is most likely the same Pokémon.
  • The likelihood of finding a shiny Pokémon increases as the chain increases, maxing out at 40. Pulsing, sparkling grass indicates a Shiny Pokémon is in that bush.

For the Gen VI games, specifically ORAS, chaining has been made much easier thanks to the DexNav application on the PokéNav+. Using the DexNav function, players can see which Pokémon is in a patch of grass without having to risk encountering it. Likewise, scaring off a Pokémon using the DexNav (i.e. failing to sneak up on it) does not break the chain.

Masuda Method (Gen IV)

To use this method one must breed two Pokémon from games in different languages. Using this method improves the odds of hatching a shiny Pokémon from 1/8192 to 1/2048 or 1/1365.3, in Generation IV or Generation V, respectively. This method was the brainchild of Junichi Masuda, director of GameFreak.

Soft Reset (Gen. II to Gen. VII)

One method which is easy enough (but often very time consuming) works for starter Pokémon and most Legendary Pokémon. Basically, the method is to stand in front of the legendary Pokémon the player character will catch or the starter Pokémon they will take and save. If one doesn't get a shiny Pokémon when getting the starter Pokémon or battle the legendary Pokémon, soft reset the game by pressing A+B+Start+Select on the GBA, L+R+Start+Select on the DS and L+R+Start on the 3DS. This method can often require over 1000 resets before getting a shiny Pokémon.

In-Game Shiny Pokémon

In-game shiny Pokémon are met as part of the main story in some Pokémon games. For example, the Red Gyarados appears in Gold, Silver, Crystal, HeartGold and SoulSilver, as part of a story arc, and can be caught in a way similar to most legendary Pokémon.

In FireRed and LeafGreen, a Trainer with a Shiny Espeon can be battled inside the Trainer Tower on one of the Sevii Islands. There is also another trainer with a shiny Meowth.

In Black and White 2, the player can catch a Shiny Haxorus in the post-story. The player can also receive a Shiny Gible in Black 2 and a Shiny Dratini in White 2.

In Sun and Moon and Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, after becoming the Champion, a man in the Seafolk Village Pokémon Center will battle the player character with his shiny Exeggcute.


There are a few alternate-colored Pokémon that do not appear this way in the games. These are:


  • In Generation II games, shiny Pokémon can be slightly stronger than their normal colored counterparts. However, this is not true for later generations.
  • There are examples of Pokémon which, although colored differently, are not officially shiny, such as gender or form differences in regular coloring such as in Hippowdon, Jellicent, and Gastrodon. However, these are not shiny variants, but each gender or form will have its own shiny color that differs from the usual color for their gender or form.
  • The first alternately colored Pokémon to appear in the anime series was seen by Ash in the first season when he released his Butterfree so it could find a mate.
  • In Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Red Rescue Team and Blue Rescue Team, two Kecleon own a shop in the town square. One is a dark purple color.
  • The Pokémon which reside in parts of the Orange Islands are colored differently to other Pokémon. The color changes are due to climate and natural adaption according to Professor Ivy.
  • In the Anime, "In the Pink" was just that apparently, eating the berries there turned Pokémon pink. However, if the Pokémon stopped eating the berries, they would discontinue being pink. Ash's Pikachu was temporarily pink due to this.
  • The term "Shiny Pokémon" was originally a fan name, however, it became so popular that it became the official name for differently colored Pokémon.