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Training Pokémon
Training, as discussed in this document, refers to the various strategies you can employ to help your Pokémon grow in Levels and/or statistics. The most obvious way to accomplish this is to have them fight and win battles against either wild Pokémon or game trainers. There are alternative (and complementary) strategies, however. Each is discussed below, following an introduction to the basic concepts of Experience and Stat Experience.

When you win a battle against either a wild Pokémon or a game trainer, all of your Pokémon that participated in the fight (however briefly) earn Experience points. When a Pokémon earns sufficient EXP, it gains a Level. The exact amount of EXP needed to reach a given Level varies among Pokémon, but it has been determined that all Pokémon grow at one of four different rates.

L15 L50 L100 Rate Equation
2,700 100,000   800,000 Fast 0.8(L^3)
3,375 125,000 1,000,000 Medium L^3
4,218 156,250 1,250,000 Slow 1.25(L^3)
2,035 117,360 1,059,860 Parabolic 1.2(L^3) - 15(L^2) + 100L - 140

The amount of Experience points necessary to achieve Levels 15, 50, and 100 are listed in the chart above. You can determine the number of EXP necessary to achieve other Levels by using the appropriate equation. The result of the equation is the amount of Experience points necessary to gain the Level, L. (All decimal remainders are dropped.)

Note that, because Parabolic Pokémon do not have a consistent multiplier throughout their growth, they start off gaining Levels faster than Fast Pokémon, but, by the time they are approaching L100, they are gaining Levels slower than Medium Pokémon.

All the Pokémon in a series have the same growth rate (eg, both Jigglypuff and Wigglytuff will grow at the Fast rate, and all of the Eevee evolutions will grow at the Medium rate).

If you're using a Pokémon for which you are not the original trainer (ie, one that you obtained by trading), it receives a 50% bonus to the amount of EXP it earns. This will obviously help the Pokémon to gain Levels more quickly, but there are two potential drawbacks.

First, if you don't yet have all 8 Badges, the Pokémon may rapidly reach a Level at which it no longer obeys your commands. Second, the EXP bonus means that the Pokémon won't have to fight as many battles in order to gain Levels, and that means that it won't gain as much Stat Exp as a similar Pokémon that doesn't have the EXP bonus.

Less Stat Exp means lower statistics, as explained in the next section. But don't worry: traded Pokémon can eventually earn all the Stat Exp they need for maximum stat growth. It's just that they'll tend not to reach their potential until they are at a very high Level.

Stat Experience

To appreciate the relative merits of the various training methods, it is necessary to understand the concept of "Stat Exp". Some information about Stat Exp is provided on the Box Trick page; the subject is covered in greater detail on Necrosaro's Pokémon Page.

In brief, the five primary statistics (HP, Att, Def, Spd, Spc) of each Pokémon have independent experience values that are hidden from you during gameplay. These values are similar to normal Experience (ie, the kind that determines Level gains) in that they increase as your Pokémon wins battles. When any statistic has accumulated sufficient experience, that statistic will increase by one or more points the next time that the Pokémon gains a Level, is stored in a PC box, or consumes a relevant Stat booster item (see below). For each statistic, the amount of Stat Exp gained from a given battle is equal to the corresponding base stat of the defeated Pokémon. Thus, defeating Digletts will earn you a lot of Speed and Attack exp, but not very much for HP or Defense. If you fought Digletts exclusively for awhile, you would notice that your Speed and Attack were tending to grow more quickly than the other stats. The other stats will grow, however: gaining Levels will increase a Pokémon's statistics even if no Stat Exp is earned at all.

Because a Pokémon's base stats remain the same regardless of Level, there's no extra credit for heroic battles against high Level opponents. Your Pokémon will obtain the same Stat Exp benefit from defeating a L22 Level Ditto on Route 15 as from defeating a L50 Ditto in the Unknown Dungeon. Stat Exp is therefore accumulated most efficiently by fighting Pokémon with high base stats, at the lowest Level you can find them.

Rare Candies
Feeding a Rare Candy to a Pokémon will cause it to gain one Level, up to the maximum of L100. Pokémon who evolve at a certain Level will do so normally if a Rare Candy was used to reach that Level. Rare Candies provide no Stat Exp; Pokémon who are raised using this item will therefore tend to be weaker than those who are trained in battle. If you've used Rare Candies on some of your Pokémon, don't worry. Stat Exp can be accumulated at any time, even at L100 when normal EXP stops increasing.
Stat Boosters

These include HP UPs, and the food items you can purchase at the Celadon Dept. Store (and sometimes find lying around during your adventure): Protein, Iron, Carbos, and Calcium. Using these items provides an immediate stat boost, but really two things are happening. First, the Stat Exp total for the relevant statistic is increased, and second, the value for that statistic is immediately recalculated according to the new Stat Exp total.

There are at least two restrictions on how many stat boosters your Pokémon can consume. First, there is an absolute limit of 10 for each item. Second, even if your Pokémon has used less than 10 of a given booster, if the Stat Exp total for the relevant statistic reaches its maximum value (because the Pokémon has been doing lots of battling), further boosters will have no effect.

It is sometimes asked whether it is necessary to use these items to help a Pokémon reach its maximum stat potential. The answer is no. All of the Stat Exp required to reach maximum stats can be obtained by battling. However, if you have the booster items, use them! They're very expensive, but they provide Stat Exp much more quickly than battling. Consider that at L100, a completely untrained Pokémon (ie, no Stat Exp at all) will have stats 63 points lower than if it were fully trained (ie, maximum Stat Exp for all statistics). If you could afford to give that Pokémon 10 of each stat booster, each of its statistics would increase by 40 points! That's almost 2/3 of its potential growth, without having to do any battling.

Exp. All

The Exp. All item distributes any EXP earned in battle among the Pokémon that you are currently carrying. Half of the earned EXP is divided among the Pokémon who actually participated in the battle. The remaining half is divided among all the Pokémon you are carrying (including those who fought).

Exp. All also divides Stat Exp among your Pokémon. At present it is not known if the distribution algorithm is the same as the one used for normal EXP, but it seems highly likely.


It's already been mentioned that all the Pokémon who participate in a battle receive both EXP and Stat Exp. This is true even if a Pokémon is switched away before it attacks (or gets attacked), providing a convenient way of producing rapid Level gains for low Level Pokémon. When fighting the Elite Four at the Pokémon League or the denizens of the Unknown Dungeon, deploy your low Level Pokémon at the very start of the battle. Immediately switch away to a powerful Pokémon that can survive the imminent attack and then lay waste to the enemy.

Using this technique, a single run through the E4 can easily produce gains of 15-20 Levels, or more. Unfortunately, your Pokémon will not have gained very much Stat Exp relative to its EXP gains, and thus its statistics will be tend to be poor. However, it is now more capable of winning battles on its own. The sooner that a Pokémon is able to single-handedly defeat opponents with high base stats, the more rapidly it will reach its maximum stat potential.

A drawback to this method is that Pokémon who gain several Levels at a time while piggybacking will not learn the attacks they normally would on the Levels that are skipped. If the Pokémon you're training learns important attacks at relatively low Levels, you may want to put off piggybacking against high Level foes until it would gain only a few Levels at a time.

Day Care

A Pokémon left at the Day Care will gain experience at the rate of 1 point per step that you take. The Day Care provides no Stat Exp, so Pokémon raised by this method will tend to have poor stats (equal to what they would have if raised by Rare Candies).

Pokémon who evolve at a certain Level will not do so if they reach that Level while in the Day Care. However, evolution will take place normally on the next Level gained outside the Day Care.

Pokémon will continue to learn moves at their normal Levels, however. If all four attack slots are filled, the old attacks will be overwritten by the newer ones, starting at the top of the list. You can use this fact to control the moves your Pokémon learns while in the Day Care: simply keep an eye on what Level the Pokémon has achieved, and if a new attack is about to be learned, re-order the old attacks so that the least desired one is in the first slot.


A question that is commonly raised is, "When should I evolve my Pokémon?". The answer depends on the Pokémon you have.

Some Pokémon evolve on their own once they reach a certain Level. You can permit this to happen, or delay evolution by pressing the B button during the evolution sequence. The option to evolve will be presented again the next time a Level is gained, unless your Pokémon has reached L100, the highest Level attainable. L100 Pokémon cannot evolve unless they are stone- or trade-evolved Pokémon.

You might choose to delay evolution simply because of personal preference (is there any question that Psyduck is cooler than Golduck?), but there's another, less subjective reason: pre-evolved forms of Pokémon learn their attacks at lower Levels than evolved forms. For example, Psyduck ordinarily evolves at L33. If evolution is delayed, he'll learn Hydro Pump at L52. However, if Psyduck evolves at any point prior to L52, he won't learn Hydro Pump until L59 (the Level at which Golduck learns it).

Be aware that delaying evolution comes at a cost: a Pokémon's pre-evolved form almost always has lower statistics than the evolved form. Not only do evolved forms tend to show greater stat gain from Level to Level, but Pokémon receive a one-time "evolution bonus" to their stats. The longer evolution is delayed, the larger this bonus will be. However, it is not the case that Pokémon who put off evolution are stronger in the long run. It's true that if you delay your Psyduck's evolution until L99, it will receive a very large statistic bonus upon evolving. However, this stat boost will be exactly equal to the larger Level-by-Level gains that Golduck would have been making if you had evolved at an earlier Level.

There's one additional consideration for stone-evolved Pokémon, like Pikachu. You should delay evolution until they learn all of the moves you want them to have. Once they evolve, some of them won't learn anything new; others will learn only one move after evolving. For example, the last move a Pikachu learns naturally in the Red and Blue games is Thunder at L43. Once he learns this, it's safe to evolve him; but if you evolve prior to L43, Raichu will never learn Thunder naturally! You'd have to use up a TM to teach him this move.

The exception to stone-evolved Pokémon is the Eevee evolutions. These you want to evolve ASAP if you want to evolve them at all. As an Eevee, it learns a completely different set of attacks than do its evolutions: Vaporeon, Jolteon, and Flareon.

For trade-evolved Pokémon, evolve them ASAP. It gives them a quick stat boost and it has no impact on when they learn their moves.

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