Not all Pokemon in Pokemon Go are created equally, and even the same species can have vastly different CP when you stumble across them. Sometimes, you’ll come across a creature with an unknown power level, labeled “CP ???.” We’ve broken down exactly what it means below.
Pokemon Go allows you to live out your ultimate Pokemon trainer fantasy by sending you out into the world to try and catch ’em all. There are hundreds of Pokemon to track down, spanning from the Red & Blue generations all the way up to Sword & Shield — with Scarlet & Violet coming soon.
Every Pokemon you bump into around the world has a CP level, and even the same species can have incredibly varied stats. However, sometimes the CP is only revealed after you’ve caught them and added them to your Pokedex.
But what does CP ??? mean? We’ve got you covered right here.
What is CP in Pokemon Go?
CP stands for Combat Power in Pokemon Go, and it’s a value that easily explains how strong that Pokemon is. It is worked out based on Individual Values (IVs), such as the Pokemon’s Attack, Defense, Stamina, and overall level.
When you first catch them, CPs can range from as low as 10 to over 4,000, but they can be upgraded with Candy and Stardust.
Simply put, CP lets players know how well each Pokemon will perform in battle. This means if you’re wanting to take on other users or defend a nearby Gym, picking Pokemon with the highest CP is your best bet.
What does unknown CP mean in Pokemon Go?
When a Pokemon appears with an unknown CP, marked by three question marks (???) next to the name, this means that the Pokemon has the highest CP you have encountered so far.
So, while you won’t know exactly what the CP of the Pokemon is until you catch it, you can rest assured it will be higher than your current best pocket monster. For example, if the highest CP in your box is 2,000, then the Pokemon your trying to catch will have a CP of at least 2,001 or more.
For more on Pokemon Go, be sure to check some of our other guides:
Spotlight Hour guide | Current Raid Bosses in Pokemon Go | Best Pokemon in Pokemon Go | Pokemon Go Spotlight Hour | Arlo counters guide | Cliff counters guide | Rocket Grunt counters guide | How to get free Remote Raid Passes | Sierra counters guide | How to catch a Ditto in Pokemon Go | Pokemon Go shop: Items list, prices, box changes | Giovanni counters guide