IV Mechanics and Distribution in Pokémon GO

Pokemon GO IV Explained - Calculation, meaning, importance

In an effort to broaden the understanding of IV mechanics and how IVs are distributed in the wild, we set off to record hundreds and thousands of wild encounters.

Now, after amassing an incredible amount of data (600,000 verified spawns), we are able to publish this Pokémon GO research article and answer the following questions:

  • What is the chance to get a 100% IV Pokémon in Pokémon GO?
  • How does the game award a Pokémon’s IV value?
  • How are IVs distributed throughout wild encounters?

Disclaimer: the data used for this research article was collected by using a combination of manual recording and third party tracker data. GO Hub does not endorse use of third party apps and services in regular gameplay.

Research results

GO Hub researchers used a data set of 600,000 spawn encounters to answer a series of important question about IV values and their distribution in Pokémon GO. The aggregated result sheet is available in this Google Sheet: IV Distribution Analysis.

After working through the data, we’ve observed the following:

  • The chance to get a 100% IV (15/15/15) Pokémon in Pokémon GO is 1/4096, or in percentage, 0.0244%. 
  • The chance to get any combination of IVs is the same and equals 1/4096
  • The game awards IV values using three random rolls, from 0 to 15
  • IV values are uniformly distributed across all combinations – there are no preferred IV combinations

As expected, the IV values in the wild are completely randomly generated. This hasn’t changed with the introduction of player-based unique IV values. Even though the game will create a different IV value set for each player (up to level 30), your personal distribution is still based around the same random rolls.

We were also able to confirm that there is no IV value type bias. There is no rule that mandates that you’re more/less likely to find Pokémon with good stamina/attack/defense IV. All IV values are separate and calculated separately.

IV Distribution in Pokémon GO
IV Distribution in Pokémon GO (click for large version)

How are IVs distributed throughout wild encounters?

We haven’t observed any significant location based groupings of similar IV values – this includes nest. As a result, we believe is that the following doesn’t influence IV values in any particular way:

  • encounter location/altitude
  • encountering a Pokémon in a nest
  • the presence of a Pokémon nest near the encounter area
  • the presence of a PokéStop near the encounter area

In other words, we observed the same thing as in our cumulative spawn analysis: an uniformly distributed random function.