With just about a month left to go before the release of Pokémon Legends: Arceus, I felt it would be a good idea to talk about many players’ favorite in-game pastime, Shiny hunting. For those who do not know, in all of the Pokémon games since their generation two, every encounter with a wild Pokémon has a small chance of being ‘shiny.’ These shiny Pokémon are the same as their non-shiny counterpart but has a different outward color/s and have a sparkling animation when they appear.
There are various methods to finding shiny Pokémon and they have expanded into newer methods as the new generations of Pokémon have come out. No matter which method a player decides to do, just finding a single shiny is a grind. To put this into perspective, we will look at the most common practice of shiny hunting, wild encounters.
Throughout every Pokémon player’s gameplay, they have probably had 100s of wild encounters by running through the brush, in caves, or on the water, but may have never encountered a shiny Pokémon. This is because the normal odds for finding a shiny wild encounter in all games released up until now is 1 in 4096. The only way to improve this chance for a wild encounter shiny is to beat the game and encounter/catch every Pokémon in the Pokédex. Upon completing this and seeing all the Pokémon that are available in the game, players could then go to a specific NPC (the NPC differs in each generation) and receive the ‘shiny charm.’
The shiny charm affects each method differently. For wild encounters, it changes the shiny odds from 1 to 3 in 4096, simplified to 1 in 1365.3. This is not the case for their newest release, Pokémon BDSP, because these games have countless mistakes/bugs in them and the shiny charm not working for wild encounters is one of them. The shiny charm works as intended in all of the past games including generation 8, Pokémon Sword/Shield, and all the games prior.
Moving on to the next shiny hunting method, it’s soft resetting. Just turn the game on, encounter the Pokémon and if it is not shiny, close the game and do it all over again. It has the same odds as shiny wild encounters with and without the shiny charm but generally takes much longer because of the loading screens involved with every encounter. However, this was the only method that could be used to encounter shiny legendary Pokémon up until two years ago. I will get into that new shiny legendary method later.
The next method that has been around in all the games is hatching Pokémon. Putting a male and female of the same Pokémon/Ditto in the daycare and receiving eggs every now and then. When the egg hatches, it has a chance of being shiny at the same odds as the previous methods. However, in the release of Pokémon Diamond/Pearl over 15 years ago, the Masuda method was introduced with global Pokémon trading. Basically, if one of the Pokémon used in the daycare is foreign, not from the language the players game is in, the odds of getting a shiny when hatching was improved to 1 in 683, or with the shiny charm, 1 in 512. Most players get a foreign Ditto and then can apply the Masuda method to any eggs they want. This method is the only one that works with shiny charm in Pokémon BDSP
The rest of the methods which have come out with near generation in the past several years are unique to these games; the method is not available in other Pokémon games like the previous three methods were. The best is Raid Den Adventures which was released in the Crown Tundra DLC for Pokémon Sword/Shield. Players could shiny hunt a specific legendary Pokémon as well as encounter other Pokémon that had the chance to be shiny at 1 in 300 without or 1 in 100 with the shiny charm. Basically, all the legendaries from all the generations could be found, but this method is exclusive to Pokémon Sword/Shield Crown Tundra DLC.
The release of Pokémon BDSP also brought two new methods as well, but they are more steps involved with each of them. If you are interested, please look at the YouTube videos I will link. First, the underground diglett method, bringing a shiny method to the Grand Underground from the original Diamond and Pearl. Second, the radar method, something that was in the originals unlike the diglett method but was updated slightly for this game. Both are unaffected by the shiny charm in Pokémon BDSP because of the mistakes in the game.
Those are all the shiny hunting methods in the main series Pokémon games. Games like Pokémon Go and Pokémon: Let’s Go Pikachu/Eevee do not have methods per se, but the games release events that make shiny Pokémon easier to get. Pokémon Legends: Arceus is also confirmed to have shiny Pokémon but players will not have to search for encounters but rather could find a shiny just walking around while they are exploring the game. The odds of this happening are still 1 in 4096 for Pokémon Legends: Arceus, so it will not be a common occurrence; Whether there is a shiny charm is yet to be confirmed or denied.