Major Pokemon GO discovery made on raid boss catch rates

By Steven Rondina


Jul 16, 2021

Reading time: 3 min

Capturing Pokemon after raid battles can be one of the most frustrating things in Pokemon GO but it isn’t just because Niantic is trying to make it difficult.

Pokemon fan site The Silph Road made an enormous discovery when it comes to capturing raid boss Pokemon. After tracking the success rate of thousands of Premier Ball throws, the site discovered that the game has escalating odds when it comes to the chances of catching raid. This means that each Premier Ball has a higher chance of successfully catching a Pokemon than the one before it, for the most part.

The Silph Road tracked the success rate of Premier Balls in raid battles and accounted for factors such as berries, curveballs, type medals, and so on. What they discovered is that the catch rate has a general upwards trend, up through the ninth and 10th Premier Balls, with the bonus looking like this:

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This is big when it comes to Pokemon GO raids. Catching legendary and mythical Pokemon through raids has long been one of the most challenging parts of Pokemon GO, with Pokemon such as Deoxys, Mewtwo, and Darkrai breaking their way out of dozens of Premier Balls and forcing trainers to waste their valuable Golden Razz Berries. This new discovery suggests that players should hold onto their rare berries until after the first several throws, as the odds of catching tougher Pokemon is lowest right at the start.

This isn’t to say that Pokemon GO players should completely ignore the first eight throws. The ninth and 10th Premier Balls have the highest chances of capturing raid Pokemon, but their success is nowhere near guaranteed. The big takeaway is that players ought to use regular Razz Berries early on and hold off before they start using Golden Razz Berries, and start using them around the fifth or sixth Premier Ball.

How does catch rate work in Pokemon GO?

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The catch rate in Pokemon GO works based on a mathematical equation that yields a percentage-based chance for a Pokeball to be successful. Most players just need to know that they can increase their chances of catching a wild Pokemon by using Great and Ultra Balls, landing curveballs, getting excellent throws, and using berries.

For those that really want to get into the nitty-gritty, the mathematical equation is:

% of capture = 1-(base capture rate / 2(CP multiplier))^multiplier

While that looks complicated, it’s fairly straightforward.

The base capture rate is the relative difficulty of catching any given type of Pokemon. This is demonstrated by how a 100 CP Rattata is easier to catch than a 100 CP Aipom.

The CP multiplier is related to how stronger Pokemon are more difficult to capture than weaker ones. This is shown with how a 100 CP Pikachu is easier to catch than a 500 CP Pikachu.

The multiplier is determined by the various things that the player can do to increase their chances of catching the Pokemon. The multiplier goes up using Razz Berries, throwing Great Balls or Ultra Balls, landing curveball throws, landing nice throws or better, and having medals. This experiment showed that the multiplier also goes up in raid bonus challenges based on how many Premier Balls have been thrown. When all is said and done, making an excellent curveball throw with a Golden Razz Berry has a significantly higher chance of success compared to just throwing a Pokeball.

Do curveballs increase catch rate?

Yes, curveballs are one of the many different factors that increase the catch rate of a Pokemon in Pokemon GO. Landing any curveball throw increases the chances of catching a wild Pokemon, but this can be increased even further with a nice, great, or excellent curveball throw.