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Pokemon Training 122: The Nature of the Beast
By Nick M. Facer
Published on 03/27/2012
Pokemon Training 122 is a course in Natures- what they are, what they mean for your pokemon, and why you need to pay attention.  This article is about what Natures are- and the specifics of their potential effect on how you train your team members.

The Nature of Natures
Welcome to Pokemon Training 122- it’s time to talk about Natures.

Every pokemon has a Nature, relating to a particular aspect of its personality.  However, these Natures have a much bigger effect than that on the game itself.  Using this effect to your advantage is a big factor in selecting and putting together a winning team.  Because of this, you want to be aware of what the Natures are and what they do.

Each nature is attached to two of the pokemon’s stats, nether of which can be its Health Points.  The first of these two stats, the nature increases by 1/10, or 10%.  The other is decreased by 1/10.  This increase or decrease, however, happens after everything else is applied.  Why is that important?  Well, because it applies after everything else, the pokemon’s nature also affects the result of a pokemon’s Individual Values and Effort Values.  A pokemon whose nature boosts a stat can benefit not by 63 points from having maximum EV points in that stat- but instead by 69.  Similarly, its 31 value for IV in that stat becomes a 34.  This is in addition to the effects of nature on the base stat of the pokemon.  Similarly, a pokemon whose nature reduces a stat can only gain 57 points in that stat via EVs, and even the best IV in the stat will leave it gaining only 28 points.  If the nature is altering a stat with a base value of 90 (usually a decent level for any stat), then you could be looking at a difference in maximum value from 252 for a lowering Nature, to 301 for a nature that boosts the stat.  That’s not even counting the effects of investing less than the maximum number of EV points in a stat.

Because of this, the hunt for the right nature is often part of getting the right pokemon for your team.  But how do you know you’ve got the right nature?  Well, that comes down to how you’re measuring the capabilities of your pokemon.

I will discuss the methods of comparing pokemon in a later article, so don’t worry too much about that just yet- you don’t have all the knowledge you need to make that choice right now.  Instead, let me inform you about the different Natures.

Because there are five different stats that the Nature of a pokemon can be affected by, there are six categories of Nature.  Really, there are five, but there are effectively six- I will explain.

Each nature first has a stat that it boosts by 10%.  Then it has a stat that it reduces by 10%.  Because of the way natures have been set up in the game, some of these natures will both boost and reduce the same stat- effectively leaving it the same.  This sounds complicated, but let me explain.

Suppose that you want to look at all of the natures that boost Speed.  There are going to be five different natures that boost the Speed stat:

One that boosts Speed and reduces Attack.
One that boosts Speed and reduces Defense.
One that boosts Speed and reduces Special Attack.
One that boosts Speed and reduces Special Defense.
And, last, one that boosts Speed and reduces Speed.

The game is set up in such a way that for each stat that a nature can boost, there is a nature that boosts that- and then reduces one of the five stats- but not one of the five stats other than the nature it boosts.  You could think of it like rolling two dice- ordinary, six-sided dice.  Suppose that you have a red die and a green die- the red die determines which stat is increased, and the green die which stat is decreased.  If you roll those dice at the same time, sometimes they’re going to come up with the same number- and these are the natures that reflect that.