Pokemon Scarlet & Violet’s New Evolution Methods Explained
While Pokemon Scarlet & Violet feature the return of some traditional evolution methods from previous generations like the use of stones or other unique items, it’s Advance as no surprise to fans that some altogether br&-new methods have been introduced. Each generation has always seen the development of new evolution methods, from the unusual way players can evolve Nincada with an empty party slot & a spare Pokeball to get Shedinja, or literally flipping Inkay on its head to evolve into Malamar. But while some methods persist, such as Diamond & Pearl’s location- & move-based evolutions, others aren’t so lucky.
Some of Pokemon Scarlet & Violet‘s new evolution methods are fairly straightforward & self-explanatory, while others are somewhat more complex & require patience, coordination, & strategy. From a return of evolution methods recently seen in Pokemon Legends: Arceus to all-new methods that capitalize on Scarlet & Violet’s new mechanics, there’s plenty to unpack between regional evolutions like Kingambit to quirky gimmicks like Palafin.
New & Updated Stone Evolutions
A tried-&-tested staple of the Pokemon franchise is the numerous stone-based evolution methods for dozens of Pokemon. Best showcased via Eevee’s evolutions from its original trio of thunder, fire, & water stones, the mechanic has since exp&ed with new stones & has even substituted previous evolution methods. Case in point, Eevee’s evolutions into Leafeon & Glaceon were once location-based until Gen 8, which were ultimately replaced with ice & leaf stones. For Scarlet & Violet, the same has happened with Crabrawler’s location-based evolution into Crabominable, as it is replaced with an ice stone.
Beyond an update to a previous evolution, Scarlet & Violet also introduce three new Pokemon lines that use stone-based evolution methods. For example, both Tadbulb & Cetoddle require thunder & ice stones respectively to evolve into Bellibolt & Cetitan. The outlier of the three is Capsakid, which breaks the mold by instead requiring a fire stone after reaching level 30 to evolve into Scovillain. What makes this unique is that Capsakid is a Grass type, making the fire stone an odd evolution method out of context, but given that Scovillain is Pokemon’s first ever Grass/Fire type it makes sense.
New & Updated Item Evolutions
Pokemon’s had its fair share of item-based evolution methods, often giving certain Pokemon unique items to hold or use in order to evolve, with examples being the recent Sword & Shield DLC introducing Galarica cuffs & wreaths for Galarian Slowbro & Slowking respectively. But keeping Gen 8’s DLC in mind, in particular the first Isle of Armor DLC, Kubfu & Urshifu both made it to Paldea’s Pokedex. However, Kubfu’s means of evolution in the Isle of Armor was specifically tied to its story & certain locations, so Scarlet & Violet have replaced this with Scrolls of Darkness & Water for either form of Urshifu.
Similarly, Armarouge & Ceruledge were revealed early in Scarlet & Violet’s marketing & were among the first Pokemon confirmed to be version exclusives for Gen 9. With the games officially released, fans now know that these Pokemon are actually part of the same evolutionary family, starting with Charcadet. Appearing almost as if it were a direct parallel to Kubfu, Charcadet also evolves via a specific unique item denoting its eventual Psychic or Ghost type it will evolve into, either of which is exclusive to Scarlet & Violet: the auspicious armor for Armarouge & the malicious armor for Ceruledge.
The last new item-based evolution method is slightly more unusual. After Gimmighoul was revealed via Pokemon GO, it didn’t take much for players to figure that the Pokemon’s unique golden coins had something to do with its evolution. Following Scarlet & Violet’s release, fans were quick to work out that Roaming Form Gimmighouls could be found across Paldea & Chest Form Gimmighouls could be caught. Each would give the player a few coins, & with 999 coins upon Gimmighoul’s next level up it would evolve into Gholdengo.
New Walking Evolutions
Thanks to Scarlet & Violet’s “Let’s Go” mechanic allowing players’ Pokemon to roam free, several new Pokemon for Gen 9 have unique evolution methods based on the number of steps they’ve walked – just like the steps needed to hatch an egg. Three Pokemon were specifically introduced with this evolution method, including Pawmo, Rellor, & Bramblin. After walking 1000 steps with each, these Pokemon will then evolve into their final stages of Pawmot, Rabsca, & Brambleghast respectively.
New Move-Based Evolutions
Much like the move-based evolutions introduced in Gen 4’s Diamond & Pearl & last seen in Gen 8’s Legends: Arceus, Scarlet & Violet similarly introduce three new move-based evolutions. For Girafarig & Dunsparce, this is fairly straightforward, where they need only level up while knowing the moves Twin Beam & Hyper Drill respectively to evolve into Farigiraf & Dundunsparce. However, Primeape’s evolution Annihilape draws from Legends: Arceus new move-based method, which requires Primeape to use the move Rage Fist 20 times before evolving on its next level up, reminiscent of Overqwil & Wyrdeer.
New R&om Evolutions
Perhaps the oddest of all the new Scarlet & Violet evolution methods, T&emaus will r&omly evolve into Maushold once it has reached level 25, & similar to Shedinja’s sudden appearance it will do so without warning to the player. Not only that, but Maushold alongside the likes of Dundunsparce actually has two forms in which one is the rarer of the two. For Maushold, it forms are Family of Three & Family of Four, & the Pokedex has specific entries for both that are reflective of this unusual evolution method.
New Battle-Based Evolutions
From odd to particular, the recent introduction of Kingambit to the Pawniard line requires a greater deal of strategy & patience when it comes to evolving Bisharp. Likely reminding players of the unusual evolutions for Sirfetch’d & Runerigus, evolving Bisharp requires it to not only hold the item Leader’s Crest, but the player must use said Bisharp to then defeat three other Bisharps also holding a Leader’s Crest. These particular Bisharps are only identifiable in the overworld by the Pawniard’s accompanying them, which makes Kingambit a uniquely challenging evolution to complete.
New Multiplayer-Based Evolutions
Similar to the new evolution method tied to the Let’s Go mechanic, another evolution method is also connected to Scarlet & Violet’s new multiplayer capacity introduced for the games. Specific to only one Pokemon currently, in order to evolve Finizen into the almost indistinguishable Palafin, a player must level up Finizen past level 38 in local or online multiplayer mode. Though the only difference at first is Palafin’s new heart on its stomach, its unique second form only being seen after switching out & in again is what makes the heroic dolphin Pokemon’s evolution worth all the trouble.
Pokemon Scarlet & Violet are available now for Nintendo Switch.
MORE: Pokemon Scarlet & Violet’s Regional Tauros Was Needed, But Three Is Overkill
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