The Let's Play Archive

Pokemon Emerald

by Crosspeice

Part 44: How Overhauled Pokemon Tick (Part 1)

Side Notes #03: How Overhauled Pokemon Tick (Part 1)

Alright everyone, let's talk about everything new about Pokemon in Gen 3, from personality values, to secret IDs, to IVs, EVs and Natures, there is a lot to cover. Let's start with a general overview, or at least the first tab we see when we open up a save editing tool.

So we have the Pokemon and its nickname, then something new called Fateful encounter. This doesn't let you activate certain events like in Gen 4 and 5, it's a check for 2 event Pokemon and if they don't have that check, they won't obey you no matter what. Nasty. All Pokemon from XD have this flag, though it doesn't do anything.

We'll go over the Personality Value (PID) in another Side Notes, but this is the main reason Gen 2 and 3 are incompatible, since this determines everything about a Pokemon, generated in binary when you first encounter a Pokemon in the wild (or when you receive the Egg from the Day Care Man (or when the Egg is generated in RSFRLG)), ranging from 0 to 4,294,967,295. So it makes Pokemon a bit more unique than before. Depending on what the numbers are at certain parts of the value determines various attributes of the Pokemon, from gender, to nature, to Unown's letter and Wurmple's evolution.

Abilities are new and species of Pokemon have either 1 or 2 abilities, with a 50% chance if 2. These are in slots that do not change, even through evolution, though there isn't a Pokemon in this Gen that has an ability that changes through evoltion, while having a second ability that doesn't. So a Wingull with Keen Eye will always evolve into a Pelipper with Keen Eye, while a Wingull with Hydration always evolves into a Pelipper with Drizzle. Friendship at least remains the same, though has a few more uses in this game. Friendship evolutions occur at 220.

Pokerus is still in the game and is still rare as shit. It doubles EV yields (which we'll get to in a moment) and a Pokemon slowly becomes cured of it over time, unless it's in the PC box. There are also contest stats, which we'll talk about at a later time.

The PID determines a lot of things and will get its own Side Notes at the end of the next update (seriously it's that long, also has some weird mathematical calculations and notation that you've probably not seen before, or for a while, so don't worry if you don't get it, I barely do).

So next up with have IVs and EVs. These are similar to DVs and Stat Exp, though it's been changed for the better. While DVs were 0-15, IVs are now 0-31. They're basically the same thing, but now HP and Special Defense are their own values and overall IVs have half the influence on what a Pokemon's stats are, with the addition of Natures and EVs creating a different calculation to get the final numbers. They're stored on the same 32-bit string and take 5 bits apiece, with the last two determining a Pokemon's Ability and whether or not the Pokemon is a unhatched Egg.

EVs are similar to Stat Exp, but not exactly. Instead of getting experience based on the base stats of the defeated Pokemon, with no limitations on stat caps until literally 65535, now every Pokemon species has a set EV yield that they give when defeated. A Pokemon can only have 510 EVs overall and only a max of 255 in each stat. However, since at level 100 4 EVs equates to 1 stat point, the real cap for a stat is 252, so you can max out 2 stats, put 4 EVs into one more stat and have 2 EVs left over. Oh well. Stats increased by EVs are recalculated at each level up, except for Deoxys, whose stats are calculated after every battl instead. This does mean for nearly every Pokemon, you cannot EV train at level 100, though the Vitamins that give 10 EVs in a certain stat up to 100 are automatically applied. EVs can be boosted to double by the Macho Brace hold item, as well as Pokerus, giving a 4x multiplier together. Pokemon holding the Exp Share will also gain EVs even if they didn't battle.

So how are the final stats calculated? Well, I'm glad you asked, here is the formula for both the HP stat and all the other stats:

Simple enough, which Nature giving a x1.1, x1.0 or 0.9 boost at the end. Finally, Hidden Power has both its type and power calculated by IVs, with a different formula to account for the changes to IVs:

Each letter of a, b, c, d, e, and f are determined by the least significant bit of their respective IV. If the IV value is odd, the bit if 1, if its even then it's 0. a is the HP IV, b is Attack, c is Defense, d is Speed, e is Special Attack and f is Special Defense. The number from this formula will be between 0 and 15 and that number corresponds to the different types, from Fighting at 0 to Dark at 15. Now calculating the damage requires a different, but similar, formula:

Like before, the letters correspond to a different stat and represent the second least significant bit in each IV. If the IV value has a remainder of 2 or 3 when divided by 4, then the bit is 1, otherwise it is 0. u is HP, v is Attack, w is Defense, x is Speed, y is Special Attack and z is Special Defense. The final number is then increased by 30 and rounded down, making the overall range 30-70.

We might as well go over the two new experience curves introduced in Gen 3, erratic and fluctuating. Now when I went over experience last time, the formula used were pretty tame:

Where n is the current level, simple right? Here's the formula for erratic:

What in the ever loving christ is this? Pokemon in this experience group have different formulae depending on their level and require a wide range of experience from level to level, so much so it takes less exp to get from 99 to 100 then it does 69 to 70. Finally, we have the Fluctuating group:

It's also pretty wacky, especially because of the big spike you need to level past 36, requiring the most amount of experience to reach level 100 out of all of the groups. Thankfully, only a few Pokemon are in this group, otherwise it would take forever to actually do anything. The experience gain formula has not changed and nothing new was introduced, so I won't go over it again.

Finally, we have this nice and small tab. The OT is still the same, but the Secret ID is a second number so the chance of two trainers with the same OT and Gender are much, much smaller. However, if two trainers did get all of these numbers to perfectly match, then the game would recognise them as the same trainer.

The game will also no longer break if Japanese and English games connect, so a Pokemon's region will be listed, though it doesn't do anything. Gen 3 is also when the Pokeball used to catch a Pokemon was tracked and it will retain this info to future games, as well as its met location, though future games will simply state the region, or generation it came from, depending on the transport method.

And there we have it, aside from the PID stuff, that's all the cool things Pokemon now have in their data and man is it a lot. Still, it's some super good stuff, especially what'll be in the next Side Notes.