Ditto in Pokemon Go

Pokemon Go: Everything You Need to Know About Ditto

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Earlier this month, data-miners at The Silph Road discovered that the unique move “Transform” is now in the Pokemon Go game code. This led to speculation that Niantic is finally preparing to include Ditto in the game, four months after the game’s initial release. After all, Transform is Ditto’s signature move. In another more recent discovery, the data-miners uncovered more information on the elusive Pokemon that further suggests that it’s arriving really soon. And after what seemed like forever, Niantic finally released Ditto into the wild two days ago.

Pokemon #132 is now officially in Pokemon Go, with multiple players already reporting the capture of the pink blob Pokemon. And the way Ditto behaves in the game is quite interesting, to say the least. It’s not exactly game-breaking, but it’s unique from all other Pokemon. Since Ditto has only been around for less than a week, its full quirks aren’t known yet. Here’s what we know so far.

Ditto is in disguise

Niantic / The Pokemon Company
Niantic / The Pokemon Company

Although Ditto is technically in the wild, you can’t really see it in its true form. It will be disguised as a seemingly random Pokemon. After the disguised Ditto is caught, it will then reveal its pink form, automatically registering it to your Pokedex. However, if you encounter a Ditto in disguise and run away from it, it won’t count as “Seen.” It’s not known yet if Ditto takes on the form of all available 145 Pokemon. Some of the known Pokemon that Ditto transforms from include Pidgey, Rattata, Zubat, Spearow and the lovely Magikarp. Yep, all of which are very common encounters. Meaning, you’ll be wasting more of your precious Pokeballs on weaklings in hopes of finding a Ditto.

Niantic / The Pokemon Company
Niantic / The Pokemon Company

Apparently, Ditto doesn’t register in the Sightings feature as itself. Any Pokemon appearing on it could potentially be Ditto. The Nearby feature, which Niantic has also recently updated, will likely treat Ditto in the same way. Having the Pokemon Go Plus accessory won’t help your Ditto hunting as well. If a disguised Ditto is near your location, the Pokemon Go Plus will still blink green instead of yellow, assuming you’ve already caught the Pokemon Ditto is disguised as. In short, there’s really no way to check if Ditto has graced you with its presence unless you catch the Pokemon.

Ditto also spawns when an Incense is used or in PokeStops with a lure activated. And yes, you can have multiples of it and is not a one-time Pokemon. One last thing: the Pokemon disguised as Ditto will be the same for other players. This means, if you and two other friends encounter a Ditto disguised as a Rattata in an alley, it will similarly transform into Ditto upon capture. Hunting for a Ditto can be frustrating. Thankfully, you can easily get someone to catch it for you.

Ditto in-battle mechanics

Niantic / The Pokemon Company
Niantic / The Pokemon Company

When thrown into battle, Ditto’s signature Transform ability will automatically kick in without needing any input from you. However, it takes a bit of time for Ditto to copy the Pokemon it’s up against, which gives the latter the chance to slip in a few attacks. This means your Ditto will basically start battles already damaged. Ditto will copy the appearance (duh), moves and Type of the opposing Pokemon. It will also adjust its CP, but it’s not known yet how the numbers are calculated exactly. But it’s possible for Ditto to have a higher CP than the “original” Pokemon, according to reports. Ditto, however, still keeps its lowly HP.

Ditto will keep the first form it transforms into for the remainder of the battle, even if you switch it out or a new Pokemon enters the fray (after defeating the current). To effectively use Ditto in battle, it would be wise to NOT start off with it and wait for the opportune moment to switch it into battle. This will allow you to “choose” which Pokemon to copy and also is a good way to avoid the damage Ditto would have taken if it started out.

Ditto versus Ditto?

Obviously, Ditto can’t transform into an opposing Ditto in battle. When two Ditto’s are engaged, both will be minding their own business until their Charge attacks are ready, which comes in the form of the lowly move “Struggle.” As soon as a switch-out happens, the remaining Ditto will immediately copy the Pokemon that stands before it.

Shiny Pokemon possibly on the way

At first glance, hunting for a Ditto may seem time-consuming. It requires you to repetitively catch Pokemon that you’ve already caught before. And it also doesn’t help that the recently added Daily Quests feature only works for your first catch of the day, taking away your incentive to go after more Pokemon after the first catch. But it looks like Niantic is already working towards a feature that might potentially complement Ditto hunting: Shiny Pokemon.

Data-miners at The Silph Road have also discovered references in the game code that possibly points to the alternate color sprites of Pokemon, a feature first introduced in Pokemon Gold and Silver for the Game Boy Color via the infamous “Red Gyarados.” Everyone who has played the main Pokemon games know that encountering a Shiny Pokemon is extremely rare. If Niantic includes this feature, then players would have a LOT of incentive to encounter each and every Pokemon in sight, which boosts their chances of also encountering Ditto. Of course, Niantic hasn’t said anything about Shiny Pokemon yet.

The release of Ditto is Niantic’s latest attempt to lure players back into the game, following the hugely successful Halloween-themed Pokemon Go event that ended at the beginning of November. For more information on Ditto, you can check the source of all the information stated above here and here – both at The Silph Road Reddit page.

Again, if you’re too lazy to hunt a Ditto, simply buy a Pokemon Go account with the creature already on-hand or get someone to catch Ditto for you. You can grab an unranked League of Legends account in the meantime and dance with Champions while waiting for your Ditto to arrive.

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