Pokemon Scarlet & Violet: How To Get Pikachu

Find out how to get a Pikachu in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet as early as possible.

Story Highlights
  • Pikachu can be obtained in a couple of different ways in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet.
  • The most straightforward is to simply catch a Pichu and get your Friendship high enough to evolve it into a Pikachu.
  • Or you can just catch a Pikachu out in the wild too.
  • Lastly, you can obtain a Flying Tera Type Pikachu by claiming the Mystery Gift.

Just like all its predecessors, Pokemon Scarlet and Violet also features the mascot of the Pokemon franchise Pikachu in it. On top of that, it goes as far as including it as a special but secret gift.

In Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, you can get your hands on Pikachu in a couple of ways with varying levels, moves, and gimmicks. And each of these ways requires a different time investment and planning. Some of them are more suited for the endgame, while others are akin to cheats that let you have your favorite Mon as early as possible.

Pichu is evolving into Pikachu in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet
The most straightforward way of acquiring a Pikachu, Evolution. [Screenshot Grab: eXputer]

Catching A Pichu

Pokedex Entry of Pichu in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet
According to the Pokedex, Pichu spawns in all the shaded regions. [Image Captured by us]
This is still the most foolproof way of obtaining a Pikachu in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet. You can never go wrong with the tried and tested method of simple Evolution that you have been accustomed to since the first generation of the Pokemon franchise. All you need to do is catch a Pichu and evolve it into a Pikachu in order to fulfill your goal. 

The Pokedex lists Pichu as Rare, so you might need to look around a bit for one. But you are bound to run into one sooner or later. You can find them in the area around Los Platos. They are more likely to be hanging out around trees, so look out for them. Be sure to catch the cute little creature when you finally do, as they are somewhat elusive.

Now that you have managed to catch a Pichu, it is only one-half of the Pikachu puzzle. You still need to evolve the critter into the electricity-loving Pokemon mascot. To evolve a Pichu into Pikachu, you need to be as friendly as possible with it. Try to increase your Friendship with the Pichu through the various methods available to get it to evolve.

Increasing Friendship

You should equip the Pichu with the Soothe Bell. Do not forget to wash your Pichu every once in a while for the increase in Friendship. Moreover, try to employ it more in Pokemon Battles. Lastly, use your friendship-raising food items on your Pichu. You can get a rough idea of your Friendship value from the Friendship Checker in the middle of the city. In due course, your Friendship will reach the required threshold, and your Pichu will begin evolving. And Voila! You have gotten yourself a Pikachu.

Moreover, there is a way to skip the whole friendship-grinding thing and go straight to the evolution too. But we recommend against doing so. It involves going to Porto Marinda and bidding for Kelpsy Berries at exorbitant prices. By feeding it seventeen of these berries, your Pichu will reach the required amount of friendship to evolve. But you will be ruining your Pichu and Pikachu-to-be’s eventual Attack stat in the meantime by going down this route.

By Catching A Pikachu Itself

Pokedex Entry of Pikachu in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet
The Pokedex lists all the regions Pikachu spawns in. [Screenshot Captured by eXputer]
You should do this in case you are not willing to go through the effort of catching a Pichu and growing it up while showering Friendship over it. Instead, you can try catching a Pikachu itself that has already gone through the painstaking process of Evolution on its own.

But this might be a bit harder to do during the beginning of the game as most of the regions where Pikachu is more likely to spawn come off a bit later during the normal progression of the game. That is why we still recommend catching a Pichu, too, if you are still in the starting areas, just in case.

Just like Pichu, You can also find Pikachu in the Los Platos area, although they are not as common as their little brethren as the aptly named Los Platos area lives up to its name and is very rocky. So, it will be a lot easier for you to catch the Mon if you have the ability to climb. Nevertheless, you can still reach the area by jumping across the gap instead.

As the Pokemon Scarlet and Violet Pokedex states that Pikachu is more likely to be close to trees. We recommend you try searching near all the trees in the area for them. With enough luck and patience, everyone (or at least GameFreak)’s favorite electric-type Pokemon will hopefully come through and become a part of your Pokemon collection.

Mystery Gift

The Mystery Gift Screen
Here you can claim the Flying Tera Type Pikachu Gift. [Image credit: eXputer]
On top of being the easiest way to obtain a Pikachu in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, Mystery Gift is also the earliest possible way of doing so. At least, this will be the case until Tuesday, February 28, 2022. So hurry up, as you will not be able to redeem the gift after that date has passed.

Firstly, you need to find a Pokemon Center to unlock the Mystery Gift feature. And you will need to play the game for around one and a half hours to reach your first Pokemon Center. After reaching the center, you will notice that a new Poke Portal option is now available in the Main Menu. Select this and choose Mystery Gift from there.

Keep in mind that you require an active Internet connection in order for this to work. Now select the Gift via Internet option and claim your gift. If you follow all of the instructions up to now perfectly until February 28, 2022, you should receive a special Pikachu.

Some Pokemon Scarlet and Violet players have this misconception that the game expects you to have had it pre-ordered to claim the Mystery Gift. But rest assured, that is not the case. In fact, you do not need anything except the aforementioned Internet connection to redeem the gift. The Mystery Gift does not even require a Nintendo Switch Online membership.

Tera Flying Pikachu

A Terra Flying Pikachu is standing in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet
This is the special Tera Flying Pikachu you can only obtain through the Mystery Gift. [Image by eXputer]
The Pikachu you just received from the gift was no ordinary Pikachu but a kind unique to Pokemon Scarlet and Violet. This Pikachu is a flying Tera-type Pikachu. Essentially, this means that the Pikachu has access to the move Fly, which is normally inaccessible to this particular Mon, as we all know. Normally, Pikachus do not fly, but the Terastallization on this one grants it the ability to soar the high skies.

Shiny Pikachu

If you are one of those players who are looking out for that 1 in 4096th chance to land a shiny and a shiny Pikachu at that, we have got your back. Pikachus already spawn rarely, and the chances of them being spawned as a shiny are even lower. But you can still increase your odds of winning the shiny lottery by doing a couple of things. In Pokemon Scarlet and Violet, you can actually notice the Shiny patterns of a Pikachu out in the wild before even engaging with it. But you need to have a keen eye to catch that.

Just like the previous five Pokemon generations, the easiest and most surefire way of boosting your chances is the Shiny Charm. But this is approaching endgame territory, as you need to complete all of the Paldea Pokedex to receive the Shiny Charm as a gift. Shiny Charm alone increases the odds of encountering a shiny to 1 in 1365.67.

Furthermore, you can enhance the shiny odds even more with other methods. The Shiny Charm, along with the Masuda method, the Mass Outbreaks, and the Sparkling Power combined, increase the odds even more to a final value of every 1 in 512.4 Pikachus spawned being Shiny. All of these rates encompass the bred Pikachus you receive from eggs as well.


We can now look into the roster of Generation 9 now that we have moved past coping with the horrible bugginess of Pokemon Scarlet and Violet. Or maybe GameFreak has forced players to move on like always by keeping mum about the whole issue. And what better Pokemon to focus on than the Pokemon series’ thunderous poster child, Pikachu.

Pikachu has been an important part of the Pokemon franchise since Generation 1. Especially after the success of the anime, Ash’s starter Pokemon became the Pokemon fan-favorite. GameFreak saw the opportunity and made the precious little yellow fluffball even cuter by giving it the iconic “Pika Pika” catchphrase.

With this, we have concluded our guide about catching Pikachu in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet. We went over all the ways of obtaining Pikachu. This ranges from stuff you could achieve at the very start to the post-endgame stuff. We learned how to catch a Pichu and evolve it into a Pikachu. Furthermore, we also talked about how to catch a Pikachu itself. Moreover, we also discussed the Tera Flying Pikachu you can claim from the Mystery Gift. Lastly, we also talked about improving the odds of Shiny Pikachus. Let us know if you managed to catch a Pikachu in the comments below.

If you are still having trouble understanding Tera Pokemons, please look into our Pokemon Scarlet And Violet: How To Terastallize [Explained] guide. In case you want to change your Pokemon’s Tera type, read our guide about Changing Pokemon’s Tera Type In Pokemon Scarlet & Violet. Lastly, if you want to redeem more Mystery Gifts, check out our Pokémon Scarlet & Violet Mystery Gift Codes guide.

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Moiz Banoori

Moiz Banoori is the brains behind eXputer. Having worked at various Video Game sites, with 8 years of Content Writing Experience and a Journalism Degree at hand, he presently monitors teams, creates strategies, and publishes qualified pieces through his aptitude at eXputer. Feel free to get in touch with him on his gaming profile at Steam and PSN. Experience: 8+ Years || Education: Bachelor's in Journalism || Published 500+ Guides || Manages Teams, Creates Strategies, and Publishes Guides on eXputer

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