Effort and Natures

Ruby and Sapphire introduced many strategical elements to the game, including 2-on-2 battles, Abilities and a ton of new moves with interesting effects. But two of the ones whose significance is hidden to the player are the subject of this section.

Effort values

Effort values are special hidden values that replace the Stat Experience of the first and second generation. Each and every Pokémon you battle gives the Pokémon that fought it a certain amount of Effort points in a specific stat. For example, if you defeat a Sceptile, the Pokémon you used will get three Effort points in Speed. Even if many Pokémon share the level experience, either due to the usage of an EXP. Share or simply because many Pokémon took part in the battle, all the Pokémon will get the same number of Effort points as one Pokémon would for battling it alone - so if you have a Pokémon holding an EXP. Share and another one of your Pokémon defeats a Sceptile, both of them will get three Effort points in Speed.

A Pokémon can only gain a total of 510 Effort points, and only 255 Effort points can go into one stat. The number of Effort points you have in a stat is called an Effort Value, abbreviated EV. For every four Effort points you have in a stat, that stat will be one point higher when your Pokémon reaches level 100. Because 255 can not be divided by four, filling up the last three is pointless - your Pokémon's stat will have reached its potential maximum at 252, 63 points higher than it would have been without any effort points at all. Then, if you max out two stats with 252 in each, you'll have six Effort points to spare which you can put into another stat to raise it by one. Of course, maxing out two stats means that the other four will be 63 points lower than their potential maximum.

Effort points can not be removed in Ruby, Sapphire, FireRed or LeafGreen, but in Emerald, six berries will lower your Effort Value in a stat by ten points. They are:

  • Pomeg Berry: lowers HP EV
  • Kelpsy Berry: lowers Attack EV
  • Qualot Berry: lowers Defense EV
  • Hondew Berry: lowers Special Attack EV
  • Grepa Berry: lowers Special Defense EV
  • Tamato Berry: lowers Speed EV

To find information on where to train for Effort points in Ruby and Sapphire, see the R/S/E Tips and Tricks section.


Natures can either be neutral or they can increase one stat while decreasing another. There is one nature for each possibility of increasing and decreasing a pair of stats, with HP excluded since natures never affect that.

AdamantAttackSpecial Attack
NaughtyAttackSpecial Defense
ImpishDefenseSpecial Attack
LaxDefenseSpecial Defense
JollySpeedSpecial Attack
NaiveSpeedSpecial Defense
ModestSpecial AttackAttack
MildSpecial AttackDefense
QuietSpecial AttackSpeed
RashSpecial AttackSpecial Defense
CalmSpecial DefenseAttack
GentleSpecial DefenseDefense
SassySpecial DefenseSpeed
CarefulSpecial DefenseSpecial Attack

Also, Pokémon have different PokéBlock preferences depending on their nature. I could include that in the table, but it's much simpler just to tell you what the rule is: Spicy (Cool) corresponds to Attack, Sour (Tough) to Defense, Sweet (Cute) to Speed, Dry (Beauty) to Special Attack, and Bitter (Smart) to Special Defense. Then a Pokémon with a given nature will like the flavor of PokéBlocks corresponding to the stat that its nature raises, and dislike the ones associated with the stat it lowers. Simple enough.

Usually, in competitive battling people prefer to use the natures that lower either Attack or Special Attack, depending on which the Pokémon will not attack with (because due to Effort values, both attacking stats can not be maximized without sacrificing all the other stats), and then raise a preferred stat based on how they're going to use the Pokémon - often either Speed or the other attacking stat. The one remaining Effort point that tends to be left is usually put into HP because while one extra HP can save you, one extra Defense or Attack is hardly going to change anything.

Page last modified August 12 2016 at 22:34 GMT