Pokémon Breeding (Masuda Method)

Another popular method to get just about every single Shiny Pokémon is good old fashioned Pokémon Breeding. By breeding two compatible Pokémon in the Pokémon Daycare or Pokémon Nursery, you can get eggs of the female Pokémon’s species — or the male’s species if you breed it with a Ditto.

The problem is it takes awhile. You have to wait for the two Pokémon to produce the egg in the first place and then you have to ride your bike back and forth for a few minutes for the egg to hatch. Thankfully, starting in Emerald, any Pokémon in your party with either Flame Body or Magma Armor as their ability will decrease the amount of steps required to hatch an egg by half, so that speeds up the process a bit and is strongly recommended while breeding for Shiny Pokémon. Unfortunately this is not an option for Gold, Silver, Crystal, Ruby, Sapphire, FireRed, or LeafGreen.

Even with Flame Body or Magma Armor, the odds are against you; it’s still a 1 in 4096 (or 1 in 8192 in older games) chance of getting a Shiny to hatch from the egg, which is not good. It’s also important to note that Shininess is determined when you first receive the egg, NOT when it hatches, so you can’t just save right before an egg hatches.

Fortunately, starting with Diamond and Pearl, there is a special feature known by fans as the Masuda method (MM for short), named after GAME FREAK Director Junichi Masuda, that increases the chances of getting a Shiny Pokémon from an egg if both of its parents are from different languages. So, for instance, if you had a male Piplup on your English version of Diamond and bred it with a Ditto that was caught on a Japanese version of Pearl, you would have a drastically increased chance of getting a Shiny Piplup while breeding and hatching eggs.

The Masuda method increases the number of attempts the game makes to see if the Pokémon is Shiny, and the amount it increases it by varies by game.

  • In Generation IV, it adds +4 to the chances of an egg being Shiny: 5 in 8192, or 1 in 1638.
  • In Generation V, it adds +5 to the chances of an egg being Shiny: 6 in 8192, or 1 in 1365.
  • In Generation VI onwards, it still adds +5 to the chances of an egg being Shiny, but the base Shiny rate has been reduced by half: 6 in 4096 or 1 in 683.

Possessing the Shiny Charm will make these odds even better, bringing them to either 1 in 512 (8 in 4096) in newer games or 1 in 1024 (8 in 8192) in Black 2 & White 2. Even without it, the odds are still pretty good.

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