Pokemon Guides

How to Evolve Pokemon in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet

Trainers are interested to learn how to evolve Pokemon in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet ahead of the game's release.
Trainers are interested to learn how to evolve Pokemon in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet ahead of the game's release. / The Pokemon Company (via Serebii)

Trainers are interested to learn how to evolve Pokemon in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet ahead of the game's release.

While Scarlet and Violet are still in development without a concrete release date, their announcement has already sparked months of speculation from the fan base. Theories on the species, setting, timeline, and more have been explored while trainers wait for the day they'll be able to pick among the game's three starters: Sprigatito, Fuecoco, and Quaxley.

For now, however, here are a few methods of evolution we expect to be present in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet.

How to Evolve Pokemon in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet

In all main series Pokemon games, there are four primary methods of evolving Pokemon: leveling, trading, bonding, and items.

Leveling Pokemon

Pokemon gain levels after reaching a specific experience threshold. They can obtain experience in a variety of ways, including during battle — through an experience-share mechanic or on the front lines — and through the use of experience-boosting items such as Rare Candies.

For the vast majority of species, once they reach a specific level, they will be prompted to evolve into their next form. An example from Scarlet and Violet would be Starly, the "Starling" Pokemon. Starly evolves into Staravia at level 14 and then into Staraptor at level 34.

Trading Pokemon

Trainers can trade their Pokemon with other trainers or NPCs to prompt evolution, as well. This is necessary for many species, including well-known first-generation Pokemon such as Gengar and Machamp.

Be warned, however, that once traded, it's often the case that Pokemon cannot be traded back to their original trainers. Those interested in trade-based evolution should only do so with other trainers they trust.

Additionally, with the advent of Pokemon Legends: Arceus, a new item known as the Linking Cord may also be used to prompt trade-based species into evolution. This is expanded upon below.

Bonding with Pokemon

Some species may evolve once they've achieved a high enough bond of friendship with their trainer. Bonding can be accomplished by simply having that Pokemon in the party for long periods of time, training and battling with it, or walking around with it -- game permitting.

Examples of Pokemon that evolve through bonding from Pokemon Scarlet and Violet include Riolu into Lucario, Happiny into Chansey, and Pichu into Pikachu.

Using Items on Pokemon

As mentioned in the trading section, there are quite a few items available for trainers to use to evolve their Pokemon. Often these items are linked to the Pokemon they're meant to evolve by likeness or type-similarity.

In Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, franchise mascot Pikachu is one such Pokemon. By using a Thunder Stone, trainers can evolve their Pikachu into a Raichu.


This article will be updated with more specific, accurate information once the game releases in late 2022. We suspect that Scarlet and Violet will be available for a holiday release, but cannot confirm any concrete dates.