Pokémon Scarlet and Violet: Subtle Shinies
Pokémon Scarlet and Violet feature an overworld full of Pokémon that you can battle right there instead of transitioning to a separate battle screen - but one interesting consequence of this is that shiny Pokémon, the rare alternate-colored versions, may pass by the player unnoticed. While they visibly have different colors, there's no sound or visual cue to draw your attention to the shiny Pokémon.
At least for me, this gave me a certain paranoia. I constantly wondered if a Pokémon in slightly unusual lighting conditions might be a shiny, and worried I might not be able to spot a shiny in the wild. This page is a helpful tool for me, and possibly others, to mitigate this sort of paranoia.
Below, you will see a list and images of every subtle shiny found in the wild in Scarlet and Violet - that is, all the shinies you might need to worry about spotting. All other shinies not listed should stand out fairly obviously as not the right color, assuming you're aware what the Pokémon normally looks like. This is obviously a somewhat subjective judgement, made mostly based on looking at images of them out of context; if you've found a shiny not listed here difficult to spot in the actual game, by all means contact me and I can add it.
I've tried to note what distinguishes each shiny, but if all else fails, the easiest way to make sure is to send out a Pokémon in Let's Go mode - if it's a shiny, your Pokémon will never fight it in Let's Go mode, so if your Pokémon is conspicuously avoiding it, snag it up quick.
Note that this list only includes Pokémon that can be encountered shiny in the wild - Gholdengo is an incredibly obnoxious shiny and all, but luckily you'll never have to try to tell a shiny one from a normal one in-game.
The Most Subtle
I handpicked the ones from the full list that struck me as the most difficult, since memorizing the full list of shinies you could overlook would be an impossible feat. These are generally distinguished only or almost only by a minor hue/luminosity shift that could easily be caused by lighting conditions in the game or general variations in texture coloring between the game models and other depictions, or by a change in some small part of the Pokémon that you might not easily see. For these, if you showed me just the shiny without the normal one beside them, even without weird lighting conditions, I would probably not be able to tell you it's the shiny and not the normal one, or at least not without squinting.
Introduced in Paldea
Shiny Chansey is easy to identify thanks to the green bits, but the others are just a slightly different, paler shade of pink. For Happiny it's probably easiest to look out for the slightly brighter, purpler pink (but lighting conditions could change that anyway), while for Blissey the low contrast between the white and pale pink is the best we can do.
Masquerain is conveniently a totally different color, but Surskit is just distinguished by being duller/grayer. Remember normal Surskit is pretty tealish.
Unlike Jigglypuff and Wigglytuff which have the telling eye difference, Shiny Igglybuff is just a little paler/grayer.
This one is uncommonly obnoxious - the only difference is a slight yellowish tint on part of their tiny mouse bodies instead of a slight bluish tint. Game Freak really wanted to troll us on this one.
Unlike with Pikachu, for Pichu, the one with the slightly darker, more saturated colors and the more prominently red cheeks is the shiny.
Petilil is mostly just paler, but also note normal Petilil's eyes are red, while the shiny's are blue. Lilligant looks fairly distinct there in the Home sprite, but I have actually seen a friend's shiny Lilligant in-game and it's quite hard to tell - the best tell is the leaves on the shiny are blueish while the body is yellowish, while on regular Lilligant they're both a more central sort of green.
Another case of the shiny is just a bit paler. Try to make a note of how on normal Phanpy the red isn't that much darker than the blue skin, but on the shiny it's much more noticeably darker.
Gible is so polite but then Gabite is worse and Garchomp is just obnoxious. For Gabite, remember it's not supposed to be very bright blue or high-contrast (note that the Home sprite makes it look very bright blue but it's less so in the actual game), and in particular, the bands on the head-pieces and the bottom of the belly are not normally blue at all. For Garchomp, all you can do is try to squint at whether there's any hint of blue there. Just gray? Belly more orange than red? Then it's shiny.
Basculin is another one that's just lighter in color than normal, and is only found in water which makes it even harder to get a good look at it than otherwise.
While Floette and Florges are more obvious, to identify a shiny Flabébé you need to look carefully at its tiny actual body instead of the flower and notice that the eyes are blue and the bottom half is bluish.
Another obnoxious one; the only difference is the shinies have blue eyes (red on Ceruledge).
The orange bits are red and that's about it. At least it's a noticeably intense sort of red.
Yet another paler shiny, once again most identifiable by the low contrast to the yellow fur compared to normal Flareon's dark red-orange.
Yet another one mostly identifiable by lack of contrast, here between the eyes and the coat.
Regular Glaceon leans a bit more towards aquamarine, while the shiny's blues are bluer and there's a bigger contrast between the nearly white coat and the darker blue bits.
Regular Paldean Tauros (all three forms) has a slightly darker mane around its neck than the rest of its fur; the shiny instead has a darker coat and a slightly lighter mane. It's very hard to tell them apart without knowing exactly what you're looking for.
There's no green in the normal Shuppet/Banette here - Shuppet is blue and Banette a very neutral gray, while shiny Shuppet is aquamarine and shiny Banette sort of tealish.
Slowpoke is another shiny that's just paler and lower-contrast than its regular counterpart.
The shinies have a greenish tint to parts of them while the regular ones are a pretty monochrome blue. Note Frosmoth having green eyes with yellow spots when shiny, compared to the regular blue with slightly greenish spots.
The regular version's arms and legs are a fairly muted sort of green, while the shiny has a more saturated blue.
If you'd shown me these two sprites and asked me to guess which was the regular one and which was the shiny, I would have guessed wrong. There's just the subtle hue difference of the normal one having more yellowish fur while the shiny is slightly purplish, plus the shiny's icicles being a little darker and the claws/pawpads being dark purple rather than gray.
Unlike Glalie, Froslass has exactly the same eye color when shiny and is just a subtle hue shift, most noticeably towards a more pinkish sash over the more orangeish red of the normal one. Noticing the closer hue to the purple skin might be the way to go.
Tatsugiri's three forms all look like slightly different kinds of sushi when shiny. The one you can really confuse is the shiny Stretchy form for the normal Curly form - the shiny Stretchy has thin yellow stripes along its back while the normal Curly has a solid orange blotch.
Introduced in Kitakami
Poliwrath is conveniently green, but its pre-evolutions are just a slightly lighter blue, especially Poliwag. For Poliwhirl you might be able to notice the low contrast with the white but I don't know how you'd ever pick out Poliwag unless another one is standing right beside it.
I can barely see the difference between these two even when looking at them side by side - the difference is the shiny has a green tint on the dark parts rather than a brownish red one, and on Sinistcha, the rim of the cup is lighter on the shiny where the regular is dark brown.
Chingling is both small and only a little lighter when shiny, with a lower contrast between the yellow body and the orange of the ribbon.
Introduced at Blueberry Academy
The only difference is the shiny is a little bit lighter and ever so slightly hue-shifted towards purer yellow - practically impossible to tell.
Just a slight hue shift, with the red bits a slightly purpler shade and the eyes more green than blue, on a tiny Pokémon.
It is literally impossible to tell if a Minior is shiny outside of battle, because only the core looks different! This is the obnoxious shiny to end all obnoxious shinies. (All shiny Minior cores look the same, even though technically they're also classified as having different-colored cores; the shiny core is very obviously different from all the non-shiny colors, being nearly black.)
Shiny Plusle just has a bit of a darker red, while being found in a cave, where it's quite rare in Scarlet so you're unlikely to see any others around for comparison.
The shiny is a little darker and that's about it. Luckily Scrafty is more polite, with its sagging skin suddenly neon green.
The two of them are just a warmer sort of white that could easily just be a lighting thing.
While Reuniclus distinctly loses its green shade entirely when shiny, Solosis and Duosion are just a little less saturated than normal.
Alolan Vulpix is still white, only with a slightly purple tint instead of a blue one.
All the other Pokémon that struck me as some you might not immediately identify as shiny.
Introduced in Paldea
Not so bad - the shinies are all redder than normal. Check the chest on Fletchling and Fletchinder; it has a bluish gray tint normally, but is orange-yellow on the shiny. Shiny Talonflame has way lower contrast with the normally black bits being red.
The shiny is a distinctly more reddish brown on Skwovet, and shiny Greedent is lacking the distinctly chocolatey dark brown.
Shiny Sunkern is much lower contrast than normal, with the leaves more yellowish; Sunflora is likewise more muted when shiny.
All of Vivillon's wing patterns are identical in the regular and shiny version - try to notice Vivillon's actual body and head, which are white in the shiny.
Obviously the shiny is way redder, but it might be harder to tell depending on the lighting conditions. Look out for the lower saturation/contrast, particulary compared to the gem on Vespiquen's head, but Combee is probably harder.
Even if lighting conditions make the yellow hard to tell from the normal orange, the gray/white inner tube should be a tell.
Shiny Psyduck is blue, but shiny Golduck is a very similar shade of blue as its regular counterpart - however, the beak is a dark reddish pink, compared to normal Golduck's pale yellow.
Jigglypuff and Wigglytuff are a bit easier to tell apart than Igglybuff, thanks to the distinctly green eyes.
For Pikachu, the best way to tell it apart is the low contrast between the cheeks and the orange body. Raichu more straightforwardly has the yellow parts go a dull brown.
Should be reasonably easy to identify Fidough because most of the body is darker than the yellow bits on the shiny, while on the normal one it's quite pale. Dachsbun is trickier, but is yet another one where the shiny is low-contrast.
Shiny Slakoth at least has the grace to be purple. Vigoroth is a lot yellower, and once again has a lower contrast, with the red bits orange. Slaking is probably also most easily identified by the low contrast - specifically the lack of one between the head fuzz and the belly.
While shiny Smoliv's black olive (cute!) is easy to tell from the regular color, the thing about Smoliv is that it's very small, which makes the single olive on its head not exactly prominent in your field of vision in the game.
The Applin line are mostly very easily identifiable if you don't have red-green colorblindness, but the apple isn't quite as prominent in Appletun's design in particular, so most of its body ends up being the same color as usual.
Salandit's color change is extremely obvious when you put them side by side, being pretty much literally black and white, but if your memory has rounded off Salandit's body as being gray (not unreasonable), then the shiny doesn't quite obviously stand out in-game in dim cave lighting where it just looks sort of light gray.
Among all the shinies of yellow Pokémon that are just a bit orange, Cufant and Copperajah are actually supposed to be orange but become yellow when shiny. The normal ones really are pretty distinctly orange, so if it's looking kind of yellowish, probably shiny.
Arrokuda and Barraskewda aren't actually all that similar when shiny, with their distinctly blue coloring... but the problem is they're found underwater, where everything will have a bit of a blue tint and distortion.
Normal Meowth's darker bits are all brown, including the insides of the ears; if it's reddish or pinkish, that's a shiny. Persian, likewise, has prominently pink insides in its ears when shiny, when usually they're brown.
Note the blue "grass" on its back.
The main body is pretty similar, but note the distinctly purple "scarf" on the shiny.
Apart from the overall more greenish tint, it may be easiest to tell from the nose - in normal Primeape it's way darker, while on the shiny it's about as pale as the fur.
The black bits are a dark red-brown instead - try to remember they're meant to be distinctly black.
All four forms of Deerling have pink rather than yellow flowers when shiny, which is the main distinction. Sawsbuck, instead, is distinguished only by a lighter, more golden brown in its coat - remember the normal one is a quite dark brown, much closer to the color of its horns. For the Winter form, you can't compare to the horns anymore, but you might be able to notice the less stark contrast between the coat and the small yellow bits.
Although they're both dark gray in color, the normal one is noticeably brownish while the shiny leans more towards purple.
Not super subtle, perhaps, but if you've memorized the overall look of the Pokémon without a sense of exactly what color its eyes are, remember they're usually meant to be green.
Another one with a distinctive eye color: remember they're usually supposed to be a starkly contrasting blue, which is red/purple on the shiny.
The shiny is all a sort of monochrome sepia where the normal one has yellow, brown and orange in the cheeks.
The shiny isn't so obviously off at a glance, but remember normal Indeedee are mostly monochrome and the "hair" is just a lighter gray, while the shiny has less of a value contrast and more of a hue contrast between lighter more greenish fur and darker purple hair.
Both shinies have distinctly pale, dead-looking branches - for Bramblin, they contrast more with the redder brown, while for Brambleghast there's actually less contrast as the redder brown has been made distinctly duller and less red.
Like a lot of Grass Pokémon, shiny Tropius just looks more yellowed and withering. Once again the lower contrast is perhaps most distinct - the leaves on the shiny almost blend into the body.
The vast majority of shiny Pokémon that carry "props" of some kind have the prop remain the same color when shiny - but not so with shiny Rellor, which looks practically identical except that it's pushing a golden nugget instead of the ball of mud. Don't let the seemingly mundane color of the actual Pokémon fool you. (The actual face, if you look closely enough, is also blue instead of purple, but you're never going to notice that in-game.)
The shiny, both male and female, is a slightly more greenish, lower-contrast brown.
Both Silicobra and Sandaconda are meant to be distinctly brown around the neck rather than the more almost greenish gray of the shiny versions - and its eyes are normally green, while the shinies' eyes are yellow.
Both Bagon and Salamence are extremely obviously bright green, but Shelgon is a subtler merely greenish white.
Like Rellor, these three look practically identical when shiny except for the prop: the normally metallic hammer looks made of wood.
Remember the normal versions have straight-up blue bits - my brain at least had sort of rounded them off to maybe gray.
Bombirdier's beak is normally a bright reddish orange, while the shiny has a gray one.
Rellor and the Tinkatink line do have a precedent in Komala, which looks identical other than its log.
Both East and West Sea Shellos are the hue shift, lower contrast type - the Home sprites for the East Sea variant don't look very subtle, but in-game the yellow bits being more orange is the most obvious distinction, since the blue is not quite as bright as there.
These two don't look like they would be subtle at all, but when I caught my shiny Lumineon I legitimately just assumed it was the hue shift from the sunset lighting until it swam too close to a second Lumineon.
Mostly this is the sort of hue shift that'd be easy to confuse in different lighting conditions, but the shiny has a distinct set of tealish green eyelashes that's unmistakable if you can see it.
While shiny Eelektross is a very obvious green, the pre-evolutions are a lot less obvious. Probably the most obvious thing about Tynamo is the better contrast between the body and the orange stripe on the side, which is normally barely visible against the white. Eelektrik is hard to tell apart by the color of its body but has green rather than yellow markings (not the easiest to see in the Home sprites).
Regular Flamigo is a very dark, bright pink, while the pale shiny barely contrasts with the white of its legs and upper beak.
Glalie looks so normal with red eyes that I easily forget it's supposed to have blue.
Note the bright red eyes of the shiny, compared to the yellow of the normal one.
The normal one has a black trunk, while on the shiny it's more or less the same metallic gray color as the rest of the body.
The top of its head is normally black, but is a shiny chrome like the rest of the body on the shiny.
The shiny is lacking the red bits and instead has them in a gray metallic color.
Mostly a hue shift, but notice how on the normal Frigibax the bits hanging off its hands are more or less the same color as its eyes while on the shiny they're pink while the eyes are yellow. Arctibax has a similar contrast, though not quite as noticeable: the extra claws are normally orangeish, close to the eyes, while on the shiny they're pink.
Introduced in Kitakami
Corphish and Crawdaunt are both just hue-shifted a bit when shiny - Corphish becoming purpler, Crawdaunt becoming more orange. Crawdaunt's purple jaw instead of blue might help.
Swadloon is a fair bit more distinct, but Leavanny is a barely-noticeable yellow-shift - and while Sewaddle's actual color difference is reasonably pronounced, the Pokémon's small size makes it a lot harder to see.
Shiny Seedot pretty much just looks like a better-lit normal Seedot. Note the significantly greater contrast between the cap and the body, though.
The shinies of the two of them are a fairly saturated but dark blue while their mundane counterparts are a lighter, somewhat more green-tinted gray.
Another shiny that's a little darker and more saturated and not too much else - the best sign to watch out for is probably the bright white bones.
Shiny Swanna are tinted a little yellow and have a light purple chest rather than blue, creating a distinctly bigger hue contrast than for the blue on bluish-white of regular Swanna.
Introduced at Blueberry Academy
One of those shinies that are lighter, in a way not obviously distinguishable at a glance. The biggest difference is of course the dark eyes - but Milcery is very small and it's hard to get a good look at them.
Comfey is small and the Pokémon's actual body being blue may not immediately jump out when it's a circle of different colors. Remember that normal Comfey has no blue at all!
Both of them are fairly distinct hue shifts, but ones you could easily take to be a lighting thing, especially since they're found in water.
They're similar at a glance, but the shiny as significantly higher contrast between the yellow and dark parts.
While it's pretty blatant in the sprite, the metallic shader in-game, their relatively small size and being prominently found in a dark cave with blue lighting makes it harder to identify the shiny at a glance.
One more example of a hue-shift that could be mistaken for lighting. Note the neon green glow of the markings and eyes.
Hue-shifted, lives in a cave. Try to note the purple rather than blue, Joltik's greenish tint, and how dark Galvantula's markings are.
The most telling difference between the normal and the shiny is the red "button" at the top, which is gray in the shiny - but it's a pretty small feature.
Bulbasaur normally has a slightly bluish body, while the shiny is light green with a bigger contrast with the darker green bulb.
Only the back is different, in a way that could be mistaken for lighting.
The shiny is notably bluish instead of just green, but they're not too far apart.
Chimchar is noticeably a purplish red when shiny where it would normally be orange, but it's similar enough to be overlooked.
While the shiny is distinctly lighter and more greenish, the hue shift could easily be attributed to lighting.
Once again, it's a bit more bluish but not in a way that'd be obviously not just the lighting.
Popplio is mostly just a little darker, but notably the collar around its neck is pinkish instead of blue, more similar to its nose in hue.
Page last modified December 18 2023 at 22:19 UTC