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Pokémon Scarlet & Violet

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How to Catch Pokémon

Vincent Lau

This page explains how to catch Pokémon in Pokémon Scarlet & Violet.

Like in previous games, you can only catch wild Pokémon, not Pokémon that belong to other trainers. The open world makes catching Pokémon a little different than the older games in the series but if you played Pokémon: Legends "Arceus" IconArceus then you will be somewhat familiar with the process.

Where to Find Pokémon

(1 of 2) Wild Pokémon roam freely in the Paldea region. (Credit: The Pokémon Company)

Wild Pokémon roam freely in the Paldea region. (Credit: The Pokémon Company) (left), You can battle wild Pokémon by touching them or throwing a Pokémon at them. (Credit: Serebii) (right)

You can find wild Pokémon roaming all across the Paldea region. Similar to Pokémon Sword & Shield, as well as Pokémon Legends Arceus, wild Pokémon are visible on the field.

To catch wild Pokémon, you will need to battle them. This can be done by simply touching the wild Pokémon. Alternatively, you can press Joy-Con-ZL to throw your lead Pokémon at them. If you throw your lead Pokémon at their back, you’ll gain a turn bonus at the start of battle.

How to use Poké Balls

(1 of 3) During a wild Pokémon battle, you can use Poké Balls. (Credit: Serebii)

When you’re in a battle with a wild Pokémon, you can throw Poké Balls at them by pressing Joy-Con-ButtonX or opening your Bag and navigating to the Poké Balls tab. Poké Balls can be purchased from shops.

After using a Poké Ball, the wild Pokémon will go inside the Poké Ball. However, they’re not captured yet! The Poké Ball will shake up to three times. During this window, the Pokémon may break out of the Poké Ball; if this occurs, you can try again during your next turn. Otherwise, if the Pokémon remains in the Poké Ball, congratulations, you’ve caught it!

How to Improve the Success Rate

You can improve the success rate of catching a wild Pokémon by doing many things.

  1. The success rate increases when the wild Pokémon has lower HP. However, if the wild Pokémon reaches 0 HP, they will vanish from battle and cannot be captured. So you need to carefully choose moves that won’t KO the wild Pokémon.
  2. The chance will also increase if the wild Pokémon is afflicted with a status condition, such as Sleep or Paralysis. Sleep has the best odds, but the Pokémon will eventually wake up. Meanwhile, Paralysis has lower odds than Sleep, but is more consistent.
  3. Lastly, the Poké Ball you use is important. Great Balls and, later, Ultra Balls have superior catching rates. There are also special balls that offer improved rates under specific circumstances, such as Dusk Balls that work better at night.

After Catching a Pokémon

Upon catching a Pokémon, they’ll be automatically added to your party of 6. If your party is full up, you can send the newly caught Pokémon to your Boxes or one of your existing party members instead.


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Guide Information

  • Publisher
    Nintendo, Pokemon Company International
  • Platforms,
  • Genre
  • Guide Release
    17 November 2022
  • Last Updated
    25 September 2023
    Version History
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