Pokemon Go IV vs CP – The differences explained

Published: 19/Aug/2020 3:10

by Paul Cot


Pokemon caught in Pokemon Go have two key metrics: IV and CP. Respectively, they measure a species’ potential and power. Here are explanations for both IV and CP, and more importantly the differences between them.

IV explained

IV stands for individual values, which is something every Pokemon has. They determine your Pokemon’s potential in comparison to others of the same species, indicating how good they can be once fully powered up.

IVs are broken down into three statistics: attack, defense and stamina (HP). Each of these statistics have an IV of 0 to 15. Therefore, perhaps the easiest way to think of these scores is in either terms of a score out of 45, or as a percentage.

IVs are more important in GO Battle Master League than Ultra and Great…

For example, a total IV score of 40 out of 45 (89%) would indicate a strong Pokemon, at least for that species. It is estimated that the chance of getting a perfect IV Pokemon is 1 in 4,096, although the chances of a 100 IV Pokemon varies depending on how you capture them.

Earning Pokemon from hatching eggs, completing field research tasks and winning Raid Battles all drastically increase the chance of a perfect IV species.

The attack, defense and stamina stats do the following:

  • Attack: A factor determining how much damage a Pokemon can cause
  • Defense: A factor determining how much damage a Pokemon can resist
  • Stamina: A factor determining how long a Pokemon can survive

Base stats and IVs

While IVs are important, and play a vital role when trying to find competitive Pokemon, base stats are objectively more important. Each species of Pokemon have different base stats which are made up of the aforementioned attack, defense and stamina.

Every single species of Pokemon have exactly the same base stats. If we take Pikachu for example, it has base of stats of 112 attack, 96 defense and 111 stamina. A perfect IV Pikachu would increase each of these by 15.

So, perfect IVs in comparison to the worst possible increase Pikachu by roughly 15%. IVs become more important when comparing high level Pokemon and those of the same species.

If we take Altered Forme Giratina, one of the strongest ‘mons in all of Pokemon Go, and put it up against, for example, Growlithe, there is only winner. That’s irrespective of typing, too. Essentially Giratina’s base stats are so superior that the IVs each of Pokemon are irrelevant.

CP, shown at the top, can range anywhere from 10 to more than 4,000 in some rare cases…

CP explained

A Pokemon’s combat power (CP) is an aggregated statistic that gives a rough idea as to how powerful they are. It is based on IV scores and that Pokemon’s current level.

Generally, a Pokemon with a higher CP will perform better in battle than a Pokemon with a lower CP. There are other factors such as types, moveset and weather bonuses that alter this paradigm, though. Nonetheless, CP is a good way of determining a Pokemon’s strength at a base level.

This does mean that a Pokemon with a high CP can have terrible IVs and vice-versa. While high CP Pokemon don’t need to be levelled up as much (they are closer to their maximum level) they can still be weak.

Conversely, a Pokemon with a low CP can have perfect IV values. As a result it is important to check a Pokemon’s IV using the new appraisal feature Niantic introduced or with an IV calculator if going into more detail.

IV vs CP

IVs show a Pokemon’s potential within their own species. A perfect IV Pokemon, when fully levelled up, will be as powerful as that particular species can be.

On the other hand, a high CP will show power in terms of an absolute score but might be on the lower end of the potential spectrum.

When battling, high CP Pokemon should be utilized. However, if you’re playing the long game, wanting that perfect Pokemon, and are willing to spend the Stardust to level it up, then IV scores are the key metric.


Pokemon Sword & Shield player loses Master Ball due to Joy-Con drift

Published: 1/Dec/2020 21:07

by Brent Koepp


A Pokemon player was left fuming after they lost their coveted Master Ball due to the Nintendo Switch’s Joy-Con drift issue. The hardware error robbed the Trainer of the rare item.

Pokemon Sword & Shield made its eighth generation debut with the release of Sword & Shield in November 2019. The Nintendo Switch title introduced players to the Galar region for the very first time.

A player participating in one of the game’s new features, Dynamax Raids, was left stunned when their Joy-Con hardware error made them accidentally use a Master Ball on an incredibly common monster.

Screenshot of Pokemon Sword & Shield Gym Leader Piers.
Game Freak / The Pokemon Company
A Pokemon player was stunned after wasting their Master Ball.

Joy-Con drift problem causes Pokemon tragedy

A few months after its launch, many Switch owners began to complain about their controller’s joystick getting stuck and moving their character in-game on its own. Notoriously named “Joy-Con drift”, Nintendo’s own president Shuntaro Furukawa even acknowledged the issue in June and apologized for the “trouble caused to our customers.”

The hardware issue tragically struck a Pokemon Sword & Shield player during their Dynamax Raid. Pokemon Trainer ‘ZucchiniBoi12‘ uploaded a video of the nightmare inducing moment to the r/PokemonSwordAndShield subreddit on November 30.

In the clip, the fan goes to select a Pokeball after defeating a Ninjask, when suddenly their controller quickly scrolls up and down before unluckily landing on their Master Ball. Unfortunately, the player wasn’t paying attention and pressed A, wasting their precious Master Ball on the common monster.

Thanks joy con drift 😐 from PokemonSwordAndShield

Despite the tragic circumstances, some in the community didn’t have any sympathy for the Trainer. Various players pointed out that while the Joy-Con drift did freak out during the selection process, it stopped for a few seconds on their Master Ball. Others explained that the fan should have soft-reset their game, which would have given them back their lost item.

Screenshot of Reddit comments reacting to Pokemon Sword & Shield player losing their Master Ball.

Despite the criticism, ZucchiniBoi12 explained that it was a genuine mistake, and stated that they weren’t paying close enough attention before confirming. This isn’t the first time the hardware issue has plagued the game, either. In November, a player went viral after Joy-Con drift ruined their attempt to catch a Shiny Regieleki after spending hundreds of hours to spawn its encounter.

Whether you feel sympathy or not, it always hurts to see a Master Ball go to waste. If nothing else, the tragic story is just another reminder for Trainers to always check before pressing confirm. It becomes far too easy to not pay attention while spending hours grinding, and you never know when Joy-Con drift may happen.