To get the strongest Pokémon in 'Pokémon Go,' you only need to know these 2 numbers

Pokemon GO EvolveThe Pokemon CompanyRattata evolves into Raticate, but this one is pretty weak.

If you’ve been to a Pokémon Go gym recently, you’ve probably noticed that everyone has really, really strong Pokémon. We’re more than a month into the Pokémon Go craze, and if you’re new to the game, it’s hard to train your Pokémon to become very powerful.

That’s why it’s important to train smart, not just hard. And turns out, there’s a way to make sure your Pokémon evolve to become as powerful as possible.

There are two types of statistics used in Pokémon Go that you need to understand: one is Combat Power (CP), the other is Individual Values (IVs).

Combat Power is the most visible number in the game. You can find it above your Pokémon’s avatar and it basically determines how strong a Pokémon’s attack and defence is in battle.

Having a CP over 1,000 is generally considered to be strong. However, the Pokémon with the highest available CP is Dragonite, which maxes out at 3,500.

Pinsir CP Pokemon GoJacob Shamsian/INSIDERHere’s where a Pokémon’s CP is displayed.

While it’s easy to find out a Pokémon’s CP, the strongest Pokémon in the game are evolved Pokémon. A Pokémon’s CP changes when it evolves, and it’s hard to predict how much the number changes.

That’s where the website PoGoToolkit comes in. It calculates the CP of evolved Pokémon based on the CP of the Pokémon’s earlier evolution stage.

So if I have a Dratini with 200 CP, for example, it will take 25 Dratini candies to evolve it into a Dragonair, which will have somewhere between 358 and 370 CP, and then another 100 Dratini candies to evolve it to a Dragonite, which will have somewhere between 726 and 769 CP.

769 CP isn’t too strong compared to the maximum 3,500 CP that Dragonite can attain. To see the CP of the Dratini I’d need for a 3,500 CP Dragonite, I can use PoGoToolkit’s reverse calculator.

I’d need a Dratini with somewhere between 910 and 964 CP to end up with a Dragonite with 3,500 CP, which would be the strongest Pokémon attainable in Pokémon Go.

But there’s still a problem: the numbers are a little off. There’s another type of number hidden in Pokémon Go that also determines the power of your Pokémon. Without it, you could end up with an evolved Pokémon a little below the PokeGoToolkit’s CP range. My Dragonite won’t be the very best.

Here’s where IVs come in. Every Pokémon has three hidden IVs — Attack, Defence, and Stamina. They’re hidden values that refine each Pokémon’s CP, and other factors that make a Pokémon stronger in battle.

To figure out your Pokémon’s IVs, you can use Poké Assistant’s IV calculator. You need to input the Pokémon’s current CP, HP, and Stardust required to power up, and it will give you the Pokémon’s IVs.

So the highest Attack IV for a Dragonite is 265, Defence IV is 227, and Stamina IV is 197. If a Dragonite had all of that, it could theoretically achieve a CP of 3525 (the game still caps it at 3,500.) And to get a Dragonite with those IVs, I’d need to start out with a Dratini that had it’s highest possible IVs — a 143 Attack IV, 125 Defence, and 97 Stamina.

If your Pokémon starts out with the highest possible CP, as well as the highest possible IVs, you can evolve your Pokémon to be as strong as possible.

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