Beneath that cute and cuddly exterior lies a complex meta game of statistics that can be exploited - if you know what you're doing - to create super critters.
For example, effort values subtly boost your Pokemon's stats as they defeat different opponents. But with this guide you can use these values to significantly boost a favourite Pokemon's stats.
While this information is pretty universal for all the Pokemon games, we're focusing on Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire here so all the critters, locations, items, and attacks will be appropriate to the latest RPG.
What is EV training?
Effort Values (EVs) are one of the building blocks that define the power and focus of your Pokemon.
Every time you defeat a critter, your Pokemon will get an EV point in one specific stat - either HP, attack, defence, special attack, special defence, or speed.
Beat an Electrike, for example, and you'll get a EV point for speed. Collect four speed EV points and you'll boost your speed stat by one.
You don't even need to wait for a level up to see your stats increase, and you can keep tweaking your stats at level 100.
There is, of course, a limit on how much you can change your stats through EV training. Pokemon can only gain a total of 510 EV points across all six stats, and each individual stat can only receive a max of 255 EV points.
(But as you need four EV points for one stat point, it makes more sense to only chase a maximum of 252 EV points in one stat so as not to waste three points).
As Pokemon also increase their stats equally when they level up, EV training is useful for giving a critter a special advantage in one area. You could, for example, boost two of a Pokemon's stats by 63 points each.
Sweet scent and honey
Knowing which Pokemon gives you a certain type of EV point is useful, but actually beating that monster over and over again - even with the DexNav - would be horribly time consuming. You'd have to defeat 255 Seedots to get the maximum defence EV points.
The best way to do this is with hordes, where you fight five wild Pokemon in one go. With this, you'd only have to win 51 fights to max out one stat.
You can use honey (found in the overworld) or the move Sweet Scent (Pokemon like Surskit, Roselia, and Oddish will learn this through levelling up) while in a cave or tall grass to instantly start a horde battle.
We'll tell you the optimum locations to find these battles in a second. But first, a few ways to make this process go even faster…
There are a few items in Pokemon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire that, when held by a Pokemon, will boost the number of EV points that your team mate gathers. Here's what they do, and where to find them.
You can get this on Route 111, after defeating the Winstrate family. It doubles the EV points obtained in battle, but halves the speed of the holder. It's a handy way to start EV training while you'll still working through the story, but the following items are even better.
You can buy these items for 16 BP in the Battle Maison at the Battle Resort, which is unlocked after finishing the Delta Episode epilogue. They add four EV points in one area to all other EV Points, but halve the speed of the holder.
The items add four of the following EV points:
- Power Weight - HP
- Power Bracer - Attack
- Power Belt - Defense
- Power Lens - Special Attack
- Power Band - Special Defense
- Power Anklet - Speed
EXP Share is worth mentioning, too. This item shares experience points with all the Pokemon in your party, but it will also gives EV points to your team mates too.
Plus, while XP is divided up, EVs are not. So if a Pokemon defeats an opponent that grants one special attack EV, every alive critter on your team will get a special attack EV point too.
This is helpful for training up Pokemon that are at a really low level (from breeding, for example) or if the team member you are training doesn't have a move that will quickly kill all five Pokemon in a horde.
Oh, and don't forget to turn it off if you only want to EV train a specific Pokemon or you might accidentally mess up the stats of the other critters in your party!
PokeRus is a rare disease that sometimes effects your Pokemon, but it's actually beneficial as it doubles the amount of EV points you gain from battles. If your monster contracts the virus, quickly go and EV train until it wears off.
Okay, so your Pokemon is holding a training item, you've got some honey, and you've figured out which stat you want to increase. Now you just need to know where to go.
Here's the optimum place to find horde battles that increase your EV points. Just stand in the grass (or anywhere, in Rusturf Tunnel or Meteor Falls) and use the honey or Sweet Scent to start a battle against five monsters.
- HP - Whismur horde in Rusturf Tunnel
- Attack - Shuppet horde on Route 121
- Defense - Sandshrew horde on Route 111
- Special Attack - Spinda horde on Route 113
- Special Defense - Swablu horde on Route 115
- Speed - Zubat horde in Meteor Falls
Vitamins and berries
There are ways to boost your EV points outside of battle. Vitamins you can buy at the Slateport City Marketplace (at $9800 a pop) or in the Battle Maison (for 2 BP each) add ten EV points to a specific stat.
You can feed 10 of each vitamin to a Pokemon, so you could add 100 EV points to any stat just with these drugs.
- HP Up - HP
- Protein - Attack
- Iron - Defense
- Calcium - Special Attack
- Zinc - Special Defense
- Carbos - Speed
Eat one of these berries and your Pokemon's EV points in that stat will drop to 100 if over 100. If it's less than 100, each berry will lower your Pokemon's EV points by ten.
You'll find these berries at the locations below, or from a fan in the Contest Hall once you hit Hyper Rank.
- Pomeg - HP, found on Route 119
- Kelpsy - Attack, found in Lilycove City and Battle Resort
- Qualot - Defense, found or Route 123 and Battle Resort
- Hondew - Special Attack, found on Routes 119 and 123
- Grepa - Special Defense, found in Sootopolis City and Route 123
- Tamato - Speed, found on Route 123
EV points used to be a secret part of the Pokemon formula, hidden from view. But with Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire (and X and Y) you can see your effort values on the Super Training app in the PlayNav.
You can also use this to boost your EV points. Beat the mini-games and you'll receive four points in a specific stat on level one games, eight points on level two games, and 12 points on level three games.
You'll also get a training bag which boosts stats even further. The Pokemon will automatically hit the bags themselves every few seconds, or you can break the bag faster by tapping on the touchscreen.
Here are the bags you need to know about when EV training.
- Stat Bag S - 1 EV point to stat named in the bag
- Stat Bag M - 4 EV points to stat named in the bag
- Stat Bag L - 12 EV points to stat named in the bag
- Reset Bag - Resets all of the base stats of a Pokemon