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How to Breed Pokémon in the Pokémon Games

Updated on June 27, 2016
Dreamhowl profile image

Dreamhowl has been playing Pokemon since 1999. She favorites include SoulSilver, X, and AlphaSapphire. She enjoys breeding Pokemon.

What is Breeding?

In the Pokémon games, breeding is a way of getting new Pokémon by pairing two Pokémon together and producing an Egg. Players can then hatch the Egg, resulting in a Pokémon that inherits moves and Individual Values (stats) that can be better than those of Pokémon found in the wild. Some elite Pokémon trainers use breeding to create the most powerful Pokémon teams to battle other players.

Learn the basics of how to breed Pokémon, such as Egg Groups and hatching an Egg.
Learn the basics of how to breed Pokémon, such as Egg Groups and hatching an Egg. | Source

How to Breed Pokémon

Breeding is a great way to enjoy Pokémon after players finish the main storyline and defeat the Elite Four. Some players specialize in breeding Pokémon with different stats, moves and natures to trade with other players. Hatched Pokémon become the first evolution of the female breeding Pokémon.

1. Visit the Pokémon Day Care

The Day-Care Couple help raise your Pokémon for a fee of 100 per level.
The Day-Care Couple help raise your Pokémon for a fee of 100 per level. | Source

Since the Generation II games, the Pokémon Day Care has existed for players to drop off their Pokémon to be raised by the Day-Care Couple or Day-Care Man. Pokémon left at the Day Care level one experience point for every step the player takes. The player must pay 100 Pokémon Dollars for each level that their Pokémon gains to remove them from Day Care. While in Day Care, Pokémon will not evolve and will automatically learn moves as they level up.

Pokemon X
Pokemon X

Pokemon X features all-new Pokemon, Pokemon Amie, Super Training, randomized Wonder Trades, and more!

 

Games and Locations of Pokemon Day Care

Pokemon Generation
Pokemon Game
Game Location
Generation I
Pokemon Red, Pokemon Blue, Pokemon Green
Route 5
 
Pokemon Yellow
Route 5
Generation II
Pokemon Gold, Pokemon Silver
Route 34
 
Pokemon Crystal
Route 34
Generation III
Pokemon Ruby, Pokemon Sapphire
Route 117
 
Pokemon FireRed, Pokemon LeafGreen
Route 5, Four Island
 
Pokemon Emerald
Route 117
Generation IV
Pokemon Diamond, Pokemon Pearl
Solaceon Town
 
Pokemon Platinum
Solaceon Town
 
Pokemon HeartGold, Pokemon SoulSilver
Route 34
Generation V
Pokemon Black, Pokemon White
Route 3
 
Pokemon Black 2, Pokemon White 2
Route 3
Generation VI
Pokemon X, Pokemon Y
Route 7
 
Omega Ruby, Alpha Sappire
Route 117, Battle Resort

Most Pokemon Day Cares accept two Pokemon at once, making breeding possible. When two Pokemon of the opposite gender are placed in a Pokemon Day Care, there is a chance that an Egg will appear based on the Pokemon’s Egg group. Additionally, there are some Pokemon that cannot be bred at all, such as Legendary Pokemon or Rare breeds. Be sure to research your Pokemon before trying to breed them together!

2. Choose Two Pokemon to Breed

You can choose which Pokemon from your party you want to leave at the Day Care.
You can choose which Pokemon from your party you want to leave at the Day Care. | Source

Once you’ve discovered where your Pokemon Day Care is located, talk to the Day-Care Woman inside to leave two Pokemon behind. The Pokemon you plan on breeding must be in your party - most Day Cares have a PC to make switching out your party easy. In order for your two Pokemon to breed successfully, they must follow the rules below:

  • Pokemon are of the opposite gender

  • Pokemon are of the same egg group

  • Pokemon is bred with a Genderless Ditto

In order for your Pokemon to create an egg, each one must be the opposite gender of the other. You can get around Pokemon genders by breeding a Pokemon of either gender with Ditto. Ditto is a genderless Pokemon, meaning you can breed it with either gender of Pokemon as long as the other Pokemon is not genderless. Breeding Ditto with a Pokemon will produce a copy of the other Pokemon.

Pokemon Egg Group Appearance and Number

Egg Group
Pokemon Appearance
# of Pokemon
Monster
Saurian
75
Water 1
Amphibious
89
Bug
Insectoid
70
Flying
Avian
50
Field
Terrestrial
200
Fairy
Petite
47
Grass
Plant-Like
59
Human-Like
Bipedal
52
Water 3
Aquatic Invertebrates
29
Mineral
Inorganic
54
Amorphous
Amorphous
52
Water 2
Piscine
24
Ditto
Ditto
1
Dragon
Draconic
45
Undiscovered
Unable to breed
81
Pokemon Y
Pokemon Y

Pokemon Y features all-new Pokemon, Pokemon Amie, Super Training, randomized Wonder Trades, and more!

 

Furthermore, Pokemon can only be bred together if they are the same species or share at least one Egg Group. The entire purpose of Egg Groups is to specify which Pokemon can breed based on biological traits. Egg Groups are broad, and Pokemon can be members of more than one Egg Group. For example, Ducklett is a member of both the Flying and Water 1 Egg Groups, as it is both a Flying and Water Pokemon.

3. Talk to the Old Man at the Day Care

If you talk to the Day-Care Man, he will let you know the status of your breeding potential.
If you talk to the Day-Care Man, he will let you know the status of your breeding potential. | Source

Once you’ve deposited your Pokemon at the Pokemon Day Care, be sure to talk to the Day-Care Man. He usually hangs around outside of the building and will tell you how well your Pokemon are getting along. If your Pokemon are getting along very well, there is the highest chance that they will make an egg. If your Pokemon don’t even want to play with each other, they are not compatible to make an Egg.

Chances of Receiving an Egg from Breeding

Compatibility
Statements
Percentages
Same species, different ID
The two seem to get along very well
69.3
Same species, same ID
The two seem to get along
49.5
Different species, different ID
The two seem to get along
49.5
Different species, same ID
The two don't seem to like each other
19.8
Not compatible
The two prefer to play with other Pokémon than each other
0

Keep in mind that some Pokemon can produce one of two types of Eggs if they are holding Incense while breeding. For example, if you are breeding a Snorlax with a Ditto, having the Snorlax hold Full Incense will produce Munchlax, while not holding any Incense will simply produce another Snorlax. Breeding these Pokemon with Incense will expand your Pokedex and give you rare pre-evolutions of your parent Pokemon!

4. Pick Up Your Pokemon Egg

In some games you can watch your Pokemon playing together at the Day Care!
In some games you can watch your Pokemon playing together at the Day Care! | Source

After you’ve deposited your Pokemon and checked with the Day-Care Man, all you can do is wait for an Egg to be found. It takes 255 steps to determine whether an Egg is produced - if no Egg is found after that many steps, it starts all over again. The most efficient way to pass the steps is to ride your bicycle up and down a stretch of road. Once an Egg has been found, the Day-Care Man will let the player know by doing a few things:

Pokemon Alpha Sapphire - Nintendo 3DS
Pokemon Alpha Sapphire - Nintendo 3DS

Pokemon Alpha Sapphire features Mega Evolutions, Legendary Pokemon from other regions, and Primal Reversion!

 

Behavior of the Day-Care Man in the Games

Pokemon Generation
Pokemon Game
Day-Care Man
Generation II
Pokemon Red, Pokemon Blue, Pokemon Green
Outside the Day Care
 
Pokemon Yellow
Outside the Day Care
Generation III
Pokemon Ruby, Pokemon Sapphire
Out of line with the fence
 
Pokemon FireRed, Pokemon LeafGreen
Out of line with the fence
 
Pokemon Emerald
Out of line with the fence
Generation IV
Pokemon Diamond, Pokemon Pearl
Facing the road
 
Pokemon Platinum
Facing the road
 
Pokemon HeartGold, Pokemon SoulSilver
Call player via the Pokegear
Generation V
Pokemon Black, Pokemon White
Call player from a distance on the road
 
Pokemon Black 2, Pokemon White 2
Call player from a distance on the road
Generation VI
Pokemon X, Pokemon Y
Outside the Day Care
 
Omega Ruby, Alpha Sapphire
Outside the Day Care

You cannot accept a Pokemon Egg if your party is full, so be sure to leave a slot empty before you speak with the Day-Care Man! He will ask the player if they want to keep the Egg that was found with their Pokemon. If the player says yes, they will receive the Egg in their Pokemon party. If they say yes and there is no room, the Day-Care Man will hold on to the Egg until player makes room and asks again. If the player says no, however, the Day-Care Man will get rid of the Egg. So remember to always say yes!

5. Hatch Your New Pokemon Egg

Click thumbnail to view full-size
You can check your Egg's Summary to see how close it is to hatching.When you Egg is ready to hatch, "Oh?" will appear at the bottom of the screen.
You can check your Egg's Summary to see how close it is to hatching.
You can check your Egg's Summary to see how close it is to hatching. | Source
When you Egg is ready to hatch, "Oh?" will appear at the bottom of the screen.
When you Egg is ready to hatch, "Oh?" will appear at the bottom of the screen. | Source

Hatching your Egg takes a certain amount of time depending on the type of Pokemon in the Egg - some Pokemon hatch quickly, while more rare Pokemon take longer. Time is determined by Egg cycle completion, or 255 in-game steps. Once the total amount of steps is reached, the Egg cycle count sets to zero, resetting the step counter to zero. The Egg cycle determines if an Egg is found at the Day Care, and if an Egg in the player’s party hatches - if it doesn’t hatch, another cycle of 255 steps must be passed.

Pokémon Omega Ruby - Nintendo 3DS
Pokémon Omega Ruby - Nintendo 3DS

Pokemon Alpha Sapphire features Mega Evolutions, Legendary Pokemon from other regions, and Primal Reversion!

 

Egg Hatching Steps and Status Summaries

Hatching Step
Egg Status
1
I wonder what will hatch from this, it doesn't seem close to hatching
2
It appears to move occasionally
3
Sounds can be heard coming from the egg
4
Oh?

The easiest way to pass a step cycle in most games is to ride your bicycle around until the Egg hatches. The Egg will go through three stages indicating how close the Egg is to hatching, as shown in the table above. A hatching Egg has similar animation to an evolving Pokemon and results in the first evolution of the female Pokemon that was bred. Up until Generation III Pokemon games, Pokemon hatched at level 5 - from Generation IV onwards, Pokemon hatch at level 1.

Some trainers like to breed Pokemon to breed the best stats and abilities!
Some trainers like to breed Pokemon to breed the best stats and abilities! | Source

Why do you breed Pokemon?

See results

Now that you know the basics, it’s time to start breeding your Pokemon! Try passing down moves and stats from your female Pokemon, or breeding specific Pokemon to get their pre-evolutionary forms like Picchu from Pikachu or Cleffa from Clefairy. You can breed Pokemon while training your team or battling the Elite Four. You can breed for fun or for creating the perfect fighting Pokemon. The choice is yours!

© 2013 Jessica Marello

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    • Dreamhowl profile image
      Author

      Jessica Marello 3 years ago from United States

      Thanks! I don't play Showdown, but I just looked it up - is it the online battle simulator? Because it looks interesting and well worth a try.

    • AaronBurton profile image

      Aaron Burton 3 years ago from US

      Nice post! Do you play showdown?