Pokemon Go Catch Mechanics Guide



Pokemon Go Catch Mechanics Guide by vexxium

Every Go player quickly realizes that some Pokémon are harder to catch than others. Why? What calculations happen behind the scene when a PokeBall hits the target?

After an enormous and collaborative research effort, the mechanics of Pokémon Go Capture Rate are now well understood.

Target Ring

The target ring offers a quick visual estimate of a Pokémon’s Capture Rate. Its color ranges from a vibrant green to a vibrant red, which corresponds to these Capture Rate thresholds:

Ring Color Capture Rate
Green 100%
Yellow 65%
Orange 35%
Red 25%

Factors that affect catch rate

  • Pokémon species
  • Pokémon level
  • Type of Pokeball used
  • Whether Razzberry was applied
  • Curve ball
  • Nice / Great / Excellent throws (not functional in 0.31.0)

Factors that don’t affect catch rate

  • Trainer level
  • Number of captures
  • Pokémon Type
  • Pokémon’s IV
  • Pokémon’s mood
  • When PokeBall lands outside of targeting ring
  • Number of attempts
  • Duration
  • Speed of travel
  • Time of day
  • Weather and other acts of god

Base Capture Rate

Each Pokémon has a Base Capture Rate determined by its species. It reflects the Capture Rate of a Level 14 Pokémon:

Base Capture Rate Base Stage Pokémon
56% Magikarp
48% Oddish
40% Caterpie Weedle Pidgey Rattata Spearow Ekans Sandshrew Nidoran♀ Nidoran♂ Jigglypuff Zubat Venonat Diglett Meowth Psyduck Mankey Poliwag Abra Machop Bellsprout Tentacool Geodude Slowpoke Magnemite Doduo Seel Grimer Shellder Drowzee Krabby Voltorb Exeggcute Koffing Rhyhorn Horsea Goldeen Staryu
32% Paras Ponyta Gastly Cubone Tangela Eevee Porygon Omanyte Kabuto Dratini
24% Clefairy Vulpix Growlithe Farfetch’d Mr. Mime Scyther Jynx Electabuzz Magmar Pinsir Tauros
16% Bulbasaur Charmander Squirtle Pikachu Hitmonlee Hitmonchan Lickitung Chansey Lapras Ditto Aerodactyl Snorlax Kangaskhan Onix
0% Articuno Zapdos Moltres Mewtwo Mew

Capture Rate

Base Capture Rate is then modified by the Pokémon Level using the formula:

  • Capture Rate = 50% * Base Capture Rate / CP Multiplier
Level CP Multiplier
1 0.094
1.5 0.135137432
2 0.16639787
2.5 0.192650919
3 0.21573247
3.5 0.236572661
4 0.25572005
4.5 0.273530381
5 0.29024988
5.5 0.306057377
6 0.3210876
6.5 0.335445036
7 0.34921268
7.5 0.362457751
8 0.37523559
8.5 0.387592406
9 0.39956728
9.5 0.411193551
10 0.42250001
10.5 0.432926419
11 0.44310755
11.5 0.4530599578
12 0.46279839
12.5 0.472336083
13 0.48168495
13.5 0.4908558
14 0.49985844
14.5 0.508701765
15 0.51739395
15.5 0.525942511
16 0.53435433
16.5 0.542635767
17 0.55079269
17.5 0.558830576
18 0.56675452
18.5 0.574569153
19 0.58227891
19.5 0.589887917
20 0.59740001
20.5 0.604818814
21 0.61215729
21.5 0.619399365
22 0.62656713
22.5 0.633644533
23 0.64065295
23.5 0.647576426
24 0.65443563
24.5 0.661214806
25 0.667934
25.5 0.674577537
26 0.68116492
26.5 0.687680648
27 0.69414365
27.5 0.700538673
28 0.70688421
28.5 0.713164996
29 0.71939909
29.5 0.725571552
30 0.7317
30.5 0.734741009
31 0.73776948
31.5 0.740785574
32 0.74378943
32.5 0.746781211
33 0.74976104
33.5 0.752729087
34 0.75568551
34.5 0.758630378
35 0.76156384
35.5 0.764486065
36 0.76739717
36.5 0.770297266
37 0.7731865
37.5 0.776064962
38 0.77893275
38.5 0.781790055
39 0.78463697
39.5 0.787473578
40 0.79030001
LVL 56% 48% 40% 32% 24% 16%
1 100% 100% 100% 100% 100% 85%
2 100% 100% 100% 96% 72% 48%
3 100% 100% 93% 74% 56% 37%
4 100% 94% 78% 63% 47% 31%
5 96% 83% 69% 55% 41% 28%
6 87% 75% 62% 50% 37% 25%
7 80% 69% 57% 46% 34% 23%
8 75% 64% 53% 43% 32% 21%
9 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20%
10 66% 57% 47% 38% 28% 19%
11 63% 54% 45% 36% 27% 18%
12 61% 52% 43% 35% 26% 17%
13 58% 50% 42% 33% 25% 17%
14 56% 48% 40% 32% 24% 16%
15 54% 46% 39% 31% 23% 15%
16 52% 45% 37% 30% 22% 15%
17 51% 44% 36% 29% 22% 15%
18 49% 42% 35% 28% 21% 14%
19 48% 41% 34% 27% 21% 14%
20 47% 40% 33% 27% 20% 13%
21 46% 39% 33% 26% 20% 13%
22 45% 38% 32% 26% 19% 13%
23 44% 37% 31% 25% 19% 12%
24 43% 37% 31% 24% 18% 12%
25 42% 36% 30% 24% 18% 12%
26 41% 35% 29% 23% 18% 12%
27 40% 35% 29% 23% 17% 12%
28 40% 34% 28% 23% 17% 11%
29 39% 33% 28% 22% 17% 11%
30 38% 33% 27% 22% 16% 11%

For the evolved form of a Pokémon that evolves only once, its Base Capture Rate is a third of base form. For the evolved form of a Pokemon that evolves in two stages, its Base Capture Rate is halved in each stage. Example:

Base 1st Evolution 2nd Evolution
Lvl 14 Rattata: 40% Lvl 14 Raticate: 16%
Lvl 14 Caterpie: 40% Lvl 14 Metapod: 20% Lvl 14 Butterfree: 10%

PokeBall Type

The color of the targeting ring will adjust base on ball selection.  If Pokeball is selected, Capture Rate stays the same:

  • Ball Capture Rate = Capture Rate

If Great Ball is selected, Capture Rate is modified by the following formula:

  • Ball Capture Rate = 1.5CR – CR^2/2

If Ultra Ball is selected, Capture Rate is modified by the following formula:

  • Ball Capture Rate = 2CR – CR^2

Great and Ultra Balls are comparatively more effective when Capture Rate are low. For hard to catch Pokemon, Great Ball approaches 1.5x the effectiveness of Pokeball, and Ultra Ball approaches 2x effectiveness over Pokeballs.

PokeBall Great Ball Ultra Ball
100% 100% 100%
96% 98% 100%
92% 96% 99%
88% 93% 99%
84% 91% 97%
80% 88% 96%
76% 85% 94%
72% 82% 92%
68% 79% 90%
64% 76% 87%
60% 72% 84%
56% 68% 81%
52% 64% 77%
48% 60% 73%
44% 56% 69%
40% 52% 64%
36% 48% 59%
32% 43% 54%
28% 38% 48%
24% 33% 42%
20% 28% 36%
16% 23% 29%
12% 17% 23%
8% 12% 15%
4% 6% 8%

Multipliers

Ball Capture Rate can be further modified with the following multipliers:

  • x1.5 Razzberry
  • (multiplier TBD) Curve Ball
  • Nice Throw (not functional in 0.31.0)
  • Great Throw  (not functional in 0.31.0)
  • x1.5 Excellent Throw  (not functional in 0.31.0)

pokemon go target ring

Final Capture Rate = Ball Capture Rate * Multipliers

In Summary

Base Capture Rate as determined by Pokemon species

Capture Rate = 50% * Base Capture Rate / CPM

Ball Type Ball Capture Rate
PokeBall Ball Capture Rate = Capture Rate
Great Ball Ball Capture Rate = 1.5CR-CR^2/2
Ultra Ball Ball Capture Rate = 2CR-CR^2

Final Capture Rate = Ball Capture Rate * Multiplier

Catch Success and Failure

Finally, the server generates a Random Number between 0% and 100.0%. If Final Capture Chance is greater than this random number, the Pokémon is caught. If Final Capture Rate is less than this random number, the Pokémon breaks out and possibly flees.

State Outcome
Final Capture Rate Random Number Catch Success
Final Capture Rate Random Number Miss

Conclusion

Hopefully this gives a better understanding of how Pokemon catching mechanics work.

If anyone has any questions or spots an error, please let us know below.

Other Pokemon Go Articles

Leave a Reply