The final step in breeding is oftentimes the longest one: Locking IVs. This is the trial-by-fire, the true reckoning, where your patience will be tested as you fight against RNG so ruthlessly against you that the chance of getting multiple perfect IVs can run lower than your chance of hatching a shiny…
With the right preparation and hold items, and the right combination of parents, you can get perfect IVs in no time! So let’s get started with the final polish: Giving your Pokémon perfect IVs.
Make sure that Nature, Ability, and Egg Moves are locked down at this stage. Ideally the female parent has the desired nature, ability, and Egg Moves, leaving the burden of IVs to the father or Ditto.
For starters, you absolutely need to have unlocked the Judge Function in your PC. This lets you see your Pokémon ’s IVs plus a description of how good they are, all from the convenience of a PC. To unlock this feature, talk to the Ace Trainer in the Battle Three after hatching 20 eggs. He will unlock the feature for you and then disappear.
There are only three IV values that you should ever target when breeding:
Best: This means the IV is 31. This is what you will be gunning for 99% of the time.
Fantastic: This means the IV is 30. If preparing for the Video Game Championship (VGC) sponsored officially by Gamefreak, 30 IVs is as good as 31 due to the Level 50 cap. 30 IVs is also used as the “next best” when trying to breed for a specific Hidden Power type.
No Good: This means the IV is 0. Yep, a big fat zero. It seems like something you wouldn’t ever want, but in a few rare situations it is worth chasing after. Special Attackers favor an Attack IV as close to 0 as possible so that if they hit themselves in confusion, they do not hurt themselves too bad. Trick Room teams favor a Speed IV that is 0 so that under Trick Room conditions, they are the “fastest”.
Another useful tool is Markings. In the PC, Pokémon have a line of six symbols next to their model. These can be turned pink or blue by you, the player. Correspond each symbol to a stat in your mind and then you can easily see a Pokémon’s IV spread without having to use the Judge feature all the time. It is also a courteous thing to do when sending out breedjects through Wonder Trade.
If you want to speak the standard language, associate each symbol with the following stat, from left to right:
HP - Attack - Defense - Special Attack - Special Defense - Speed
This is the most widespread symbol association order for IVs. IVs of 31 are generally marked in blue, any other relevant IV number is generally marked in pink, and IVs that are not 31, 30, or 0 are denoted in the form of a symbol left gray.
Finally, make sure you have a Destiny Knot! This little bugger will guaranteed transfer four IVs from parent to child and is a complete game-changer in the realm of Pokémon. It can cut your chance of getting perfect offspring from as nebulous as 1/64,000 to 1/36 if used properly.
IV Perfection Workflow
Step 1: A completely imperfect Pokémon holding an Everstone is paired with a somewhat perfect Ditto holding a Destiny Knot. After a hard day’s work of S.O.S. Chaining your Ditto will probably have 4 perfect IVs, meaning you will need at least 2 Ditto so that between them all, they can cover all six stats.
The imperfect Pokémon is the mother with all other criteria locked down. Start hatching those eggs using Flame Body and Roto Hatch to speed things up.
Step 2: When you get an offspring with one or two perfect IVs who still meets all other criteria (and is female if it’s possible), replace your initial imperfect Pokémon. Abilities can never be totally locked down since the chance of inheritance maxes out at 80%, so if you get an offspring with good IVs but a stinker Ability, just keep trying.
Step 3: Keep repeating Step 2 every time you get offspring with one more perfect IV. Your chances of getting that perfect offspring will keep increasing. Slow but steady wins the race!
Step 4: At some point in time, you will get an offspring with the same 4 perfect IVs as your Ditto (who, friendly reminder, still has the right Nature, Ability, and Egg Moves, and is ideally female if possible). Switch to your other Ditto and hand it the Destiny Knot. It’s time to repeat Steps 2 and 3.
Step 5: You might run into a scenario where you have two offspring Pokémon, one male and one female, each with 4 - 5 perfect IVs that overlap to give you what you want, but individually neither of them work. At this point, you can stop using Ditto entirely. Just hand one an Everstone and the other the Destiny Knot.
Step 6: The point where both parents have 4 - 5 perfect IVs is the point where you will have to play the waiting game. Now you are playing with pure chance, especially so if both parents have 5 perfect IVs in the wrong places. Keep trying and don’t give up!