Breeding 101: Hidden Power

Gather around the campfire children, today is the final installment in this wonderful series I like to call Breeding 101.  You are already armed with everything you need to breed competitive Pokémon.  You know how to breed for moves, Individual Values, and nature.  You can speed up hatching time with some handy Pokémon, and you know how to figure out your Pokémon's strengths and weaknesses.  But nothing can prepare you for the gelatinous hell-beast we in the breeding business like to call Hidden Power.

This week's installment comes to you with a very large disclaimer: No matter what you do, Hidden Power is going to be random.  No matter how much influence you have over your Pokémon's stats in the form of Power Items, you never truly have any sort of control over it.  So if you want to leave our digital band of heroes, I can't say as I blame you.  For those who are strong of heart, venture forth.  We shall slay this beast!

Demystifying the Hidden

Hidden Power is a Normal-type move on the surface, but its true type can be any type other than Normal.  If a Water-type Pokémon ends up with a Water-type Hidden Power, the move will receive a Same-type Attack Bonus, or STAB, even though it appears on the surface to be a Normal type move.  Because of this fact, Normal-type Pokémon that have no secondary type cannot receive a STAB as Hidden Power will never be a Normal-type move.  Hidden Power has a power within the range of 30 to 70; and it always has 15PP, is a Special category attack, and has 100% accuracy.  The power and type are determined by your Pokémon's IV statistics.

Calculating the Type

In order to calculate your Hidden Power type and power, you will need to obtain your Pokémon's Individual Values.  In order to calculate your Pokémon's IVs, you will need to use a freshly hatched or caught Pokémon and a friend with a Generation IV game.  I covered Individual Value calculation earlier in the Breeding 101 series which you can find in the article, Breeding 101: Individual Values (Part I).  I suggest you refer back to it if you cannot remember how to calculate your IVs.

Once you have your IVs, you can calculate the Hidden Power type via the following formula:

Type = (A + B + C + D + E + F) * 15 / 63

If the HP IV is odd, then A = 1.
If the Attack IV is odd, then B = 2.
If the Defense IV is odd, then C = 4.
If the Speed IV is odd, then D = 8.
If the Special Attack IV is odd, then E = 16.
If the Special Defense IV is odd, then F = 32.
If the IV of any stat is even, then the variable = 0.
Type is rounded down to the nearest integer.

Once you know the Type value, you can refer to the list below to find your Hidden Power type.

0 = Fighting
1 = Flying
2 = Poison
3 = Ground
4 = Rock
5 = Bug
6 = Ghost
7 = Steel
8 = Fire
9 = Water
10 = Grass
11 = Electric
12 = Psychic
13 = Ice
14 = Dragon
15 = Dark

Calculating the Power

When calculating the power of Hidden Power, you will once again need to know your Pokémon's IVs.  Once you have recorded your Pokémon's IVs, you can use the following formula to determine the move's power:

Power = (U + V + W + X + Y + Z) * (40 / 63) + 30

If the HP IV divided by 4 has remainder 2 or 3, then U = 1.
If the Attack IV divided by 4 has remainder 2 or 3, then V = 2.
If the Defense IV divided by 4 has remainder 2 or 3, then W = 4.
If the Speed IV divided by 4 has remainder 2 or 3, then X = 8.
If the Special Attack IV divided by 4 has remainder 2 or 3, then Y = 16.
If the Special Defense IV divided by 4 has remainder 2 or 3, then Z = 32.
If the IV of any stat divided by 4 has remainder 0 or 1, then the variable = 0
Power is rounded down to the nearest integer.

In other words, if the IV is 2, 3, 6, 7, 10, 11, 14, 15, 18, 19, 22, 23, 26, 27, 30, or 31, you use the number given, otherwise, use 0.  With that, you should now be able to calculate the type and power of the move.  But trying to breed for type and power is another story.

The Breeders Edge

As you know from our previous discussion regarding Individual Values, in the best breeding scenario, you can pass 3 values from your parent Pokémon.  This is what makes it so difficult to breed for a specific Hidden Power.  If you breed for a specific type, you may find the power lacking.  There are sacrifices in IVs to be made, and you will probably spend more time hatching eggs and calculating than actually using the move in battle.  But you now know how to calculate its values, and knowing is half the battle.  Just ask G.I. Joe.

You must be cursing me up and down for giving you information on a move that is mostly out of your control when breeding.  But it is an important component for competitive battle.  For example, take a Manectric, an Electric-type Pokémon.  He has no way of dealing super effective damage to Ground-type Pokémon unless he has a Grass-type Hidden Power.  With high Speed and Special Attack IVs, he stands a fighting chance against Ground-types.

With that being said, it is time to hang up my lab coat.  It's been a fun journey friends.  We genetically influenced and bred small fighting monsters for our amusement.  We laughed, we learned, we loved.  Or so I assume.  Hopefully I have filled your head with knowledge and entertained you.  At the very least, I know that if you have read even a small piece of my articles, I have wasted your time.  And in the end, isn't that what matters?

Special thanks to Smogon for the type and power formulas found in this article.