While Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire introduced Pokémon Contests to the world of Pokémon, the original Pokémon Diamond and Pearl expanded upon that concept and created Super Contests. Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl are taking it a step further, though, and revamping the system once again to introduce the new and improved Super Contest Shows.
Basics of Super Contest Shows
The Super Contest Shows are an optional portion of the games that are available in Hearthome City.
Instead of battling with your Pokémon the traditional way, you instead take the stage with your Pokémon and try to win over the audience through style and appeal, using your Pokémon’s charms and moves instead of simply their battle strength.
There are five different categories for Super Contest Shows: Coolness, Cuteness, Toughness, Cleverness, and Beauty. Each move that a Pokémon can learn also belongs to one of those categories, and each Pokémon has special contest stats—called conditions—that correspond to these categories, which can be increased by feeding them special food items you can mix up called Poffins.
Not only are there five different categories to participate in for Super Contest Shows, but each category also has a rank associated with it, starting at Normal Rank, then increasing to Great Rank, Ultra Rank, and finally Master Rank. Each rank beyond Normal Rank requires clearing the previous rank in order to access it. Your Pokémon receive Ribbons that match the category and rank if they take 1st Place in the Super Contest Show.
Each Super Contest Show is broken up into different sections, with Pokémon being judged and accumulating score based on their performance during each section.
Before participating in Super Contest Shows, it’s a good idea to raise your Pokémon’s condition (contest stat) in the category that you want it to excel in. You can do this by feeding the Pokémon Poffins, which can be cooked in a minigame where you provide berries, mix them together, and get Poffins of different flavors and levels.
There are five different flavors that Poffins can have—one that corresponds to each contest category.
- Spicy Poffins increase Coolness
- Sweet Poffins increase Cuteness
- Sour Poffins increase Toughness
- Bitter Poffins increase Cleverness
- Dry Poffins increase Beauty
It is possible for a Poffin to have two flavors, for instance a Spicy-Dry Poffin. Each Poffin also has a level associated with it when it is created, which affects how much that condition is raised.
A Pokémon’s Nature affects which flavor is its favorite, which is visible from the Condition screen of the Pokémon summary. A Pokémon that eats a Poffin containing that flavor will receive a boost to the benefit it receives from that Poffin.
However, eating Poffins increases a Pokémon’s sheen, which acts as a limit to how many of its conditions are able to be raised. Every time a Pokémon is fed a Poffin, it gains some of that sheen, and once it hits its maximum sheen, it can no longer eat any more Poffins or raise its conditions at all. For Trainers looking to participate in high-level Contests, it’s important to ensure you feed your Pokémon high quality Poffins made with rarer berries to maximize the amount of condition you’ll be able to raise before reaching the sheen cap.
It’s important to note that, unlike the original Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum, you cannot make Poffins with other Trainers. You instead put up to four berries into the pot while cooking Poffins and can cook high-quality Poffins without depending on other Trainers.
When actually participating in the Super Contest Show, one of the segments that your Pokémon will be judged in is the Visual Evaluation segment, where judges examine your Pokémon’s visual appeal for the entered category.
The Pokémon’s species is irrelevant here, don’t worry; a Machoke can be cute and an Abra can be tough. What is relevant here, though, is the Pokémon’s condition for that category, which is raised by feeding it the aforementioned Poffins.
Additionally, the Pokémon’s Capsule Decorations that can decorate a Pokémon’s Poké Ball are also factored into the Visual Evaluation score.
The better appeal it has during the Visual Evaluation section, the more score it earns at the end.
The second round of the Super Contest Show is the Dance Evaluation segment, which has your Pokémon match the music’s rhythm in a minigame where you need to tap or hold in buttons according to what the notes on the bottom of the screen tell you to do. The better you do at this, the better your score will be, and you’ll also get Hype Points, which are used in the final round.
The final round of the Super Contest Show is the Move Evaluation segment, where your Pokémon uses a single move that can please the crowd, earn Hype Points, and also potentially create a Move Chain if timed properly to score even more Hype Points.
This is substantially different from the original Super Contests in Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum, where there were several different rounds where your Pokémon could use moves in.