As the mascot of Pokemon franchise, Pikachu is a popular character who makes a constant appearance in various Pokemon games, shows, movies and toys. This iconic yellow mouse-like Pokemon is probably the franchise’s most famous creature. I’m sure even people unfamiliar with the pocket monster must have seen the yellow furball somewhere before. However, one aspect of this character that is often overlooked is the fact that he actually has an evolution. In games, it is possible to evolve Pikachu to a certain level, but the specific details of this evolution vary between games, movies, TV shows, comics, books, etc.
In this article, we will give some details about how Pikachu evolution works in video games. Before we get into that, we need to look at some of the important details about this Pokemon – which is actually very unique compared to the rest of its species.
How does Pikachu level up?
In the Pokemon games, Pikachu does not have a specific level required for it to evolve. Instead, you’ll need a Thunder Stone. There’s no other way to get the iconic electric guy to surpass his Pikachu form. Additionally, evolution stones like the Thunder Stone are not tied to a Pokemon’s level, meaning you can evolve it to any level as long as you have the evolution stone.
For the eight generations of Pokémon and related games, how Pikachu’s evolution works hasn’t changed much. However, in spin-off games, the way Pikachu is able to level up may change, allowing it to evolve without following the Thunder Stone rule.
Considering the main games, which are considered the canon timeline, Pikachu doesn’t have a specific level required to evolve into Raichu (Alolan Raichu). The Thunder Stone evolutionary stone is a rare item that can only be found in certain areas of the games, so you’ll need to be very careful traveling through new areas if you’re looking to find one.
When will Pikachu be able to level up in the main games?
In all of the major Pokemon games, there are multiple ways to earn a Thunder Stone in order to evolve Pikachu – even if its level doesn’t work as a requirement.
It’s best to evolve Pikachu after getting the Thunderbolt move, allowing you to enjoy Pikachu’s signature move even when you’ve evolved into Raichu. Unfortunately, Thunderbolt is not available for Raichu, which creates a problem for anyone looking to maximize this Pokemon’s potential. In each game, Pokemon learn Thunderbolt at different levels.
Here are the places where you can find the Thunderstone in the Pokemon games:
Red, Green, Blue, Yellow – Department store Céladon
Gold, Silver, Crystal – Bill’s Grandfather’s Sea Cottage, Lass Dana’s Route 38
Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald – New Mauville, Route 124 (traded for Yellow Shard)
Firered, LeafGreen – Power station (x2), department store Céladon
XD – Port of Gateon
Diamond, Pearl, Platinum – Solaceon Runs, Sunyshore City, The Underground
HeartGod, SoulMoney – Bill’s Grandpa’s Sea Cottage, Lass Dana’s Route 38, Bug-Catching Contest First Prize (post-National Pokédex), Pokéathlon Dome (earn 2500 points)
Black White – Chargestone Cave, Shopping Mall Nine, Dust clouds, Black City (Black), White Forest (White)
Black 2, White 2 – Nimbasa City, Chargestone Cave, Join Avenue (Antique), Black City (Store 1), Dust clouds (Chargestone Cave, Mistralton Cave, Clay Tunnel, Twist Mountain, Underground Ruins, Victory Road, Wellspring Cave, Seaside Cave, Giant Gouffre) ), Hidden Grottoes (Routes 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 9, 13, 18, 22, 23; Floccesy Ranch; Giant Chasm; Abundant Shrine; Lostlorn Forest; Pinwheel Forest) (regular areas after catching Thundurus)
X,Y – Route 10 and 11, Secret Super Training (Follow these leaky objectives!, The Battle for the Best: Version X!, and The Battle for the Best: Version Y!), Route 18 (from Psychic Inver), Spiky Rock 2 ( from Psychic Inver), Spiky Rock 3 (from Psychic Inver), Spiky Rock 4 (from Psychic Inver), Spiky Rock 5 (from Psychic Inver), Spiky Rock 6 (from (in battles, using Hyper Voice or Rock Slide)
OmegaRuby, AlphaSapphire – New Mauville, Route 124 (trade with Treasure Hunter for a Yellow Shard), Mauville City (Inverse Battle Stop), Secret Super Training (Follow These Fleeing Goals!, The Battle for the Best!), Route 117 (against Triathlete Dylan) , Route 118 (against guitarist Dalton), Secret Base (“Pick up rocks” with Secret Pal).
Sun Moon – Route 8, Poké Pelago (Aphun Island – hunting for shiny stones, hunting for interesting objects), Konikoni town
UltraSun, UltraMoon – Route 9, Paniola Ranch, Ultra Plant (No. 6), Konikoni City, Poké Pelago (Isle Aphun – Brilliant Stone Hunting, Interesting-Item Hunting)
Pikachu Eevee – Department store Céladon, route 10, power plant
Sword, Shield – Bridge Field, North Lake Miloch, Lake of Outrage (Digging Duo)
So why hasn’t it evolved?
More than just the show’s mascot, Ash’s Pikachu in Pokémon has been his constant companion in Episode 1 of the anime, with only a few episodes missing. But a quick look at its in-game data reveals that Pikachu isn’t a particularly powerful Pokemon, with average abilities that nearly quadruple when it evolves into Raichu.
So that begs the question, why hasn’t it evolved? Why didn’t Ash evolve Pikachu to its stronger, more amazing, and final form or level after 20+ years of episodes and multiple Thunderstones?
The explanation is simple: in Ash’s mind, it was never his decision to make. Instead, he left it to Pikachu.
Ash, as a human who never evolves, has no idea what evolution is other than what he sees. As a result, he never trained a Pokémon with the intention of forcing it to evolve, nor did he focus on evolution as a way to become more powerful throughout the series. While he’s generally thrilled for his Pokémon when they evolve, he also respects their decisions to stay the same, such as when Bulbasaur chose not to evolve in Season 1 Episode 48, “The Mysterious Bulbasaur Garden. “.
Based on the events of the series, it’s much clearer why Ash doesn’t choose to level Pikachu up, and the games stay true to Pikachu as a character by having his evolution require the thunder stone.