As volatile as the unending feud between Ash Ketchum and Team Rocket is, a civil war has been brewing within the Pokemon fanbase. Since the introduction of the Odd Egg in Pokemon Crystal, or Masuda breeding thereafter, Pokemon fans have waged war over whether Method Hunting or Full Odds Shiny Hunts are better.
There are three sides to the Shiny Hunting argument. The first is those who believe a Shiny Pokemon holds more value if it’s found at “full odds” – 1/4096 or 1/8192 – without the assistance of charms, methods, or glitches.
The second group believes “method hunting” is the better option. These trainers will take specific steps, usually centered around an in-game event or feature, that drastically raises the odds of finding a Shiny. Think SoS Chaining in Gen 7 or making Shiny Sandwiches in Gen 9.
A third group remains bipartisan. They take a route that denies conflict and involves reason, stating neither approach is better but that the best way to hunt is how a trainer wants to. But is there truth in these words? Is Shiny Hunting better with a method, or are Full Odds hunters on to something?
Full Odds vs Method Shiny Pokemon Hunting
To answer whether Method Hunting or Full Odds hunting is better, you must first answer another question: what do you want to get out of your Shiny Pokemon hunt? Or better yet, why are you shiny hunting?
There is no definitive best way to Shiny hunt as there’s no one universal reason why a trainer is hunting. So, depending on your “why,” will dictate the best method for you. We will go into why Method Hunting is better for some and why Full Odds hunts tickle the fancy of others… even if it takes weeks, months, or years to find a single shiny.
Why Method Hunting Is Better For Finding Shiny Pokemon
Method Hunting is better for those who want to find a larger quantity of Shiny Pokemon. Method Hunts drastically raise the odds of finding Shiny Pokemon, and it’s never been as easy to find Shiny Pokemon as it is in the most recent gens.
Volume Of Shiny Pokemon
For example, the Dynamax Adventures in Pokemon Sword & Shield raised the odds to 1/100 (with the Shiny Charm). And since you can encounter four Pokemon per adventure, you have a 1/25 chance per Dynamax Adventure to find a Shiny Pokemon.
But even that pales compared to the odds in Pokemon Legends: Arceus and Scarlet & Violet. Mass Outbreaks in Arceus can raise the Shiny Odds to as high as 1/128.5, with players raking in multiple Shinies per outbreak. Speaking from personal experience, this method of hunting is one of the quickest and most engaging ways to find a Shiny Pokemon.
Even still, Shiny Sandwiches in Pokemon Scarlet & Violet have broken Shiny Hunting, making it the preferred method by most trainers who want to pad out their collection. With the Shiny Charm and a Level 3 Sandwich, players are looking at a 1/683 chance of finding a Shiny Pokemon. And with the astronomical number of Pokemon you can “encounter” every minute, players can average 2-3 Shinies every 30 minutes.
Variety In Gameplay
In addition to an abundance of new Shiny pals, method hunting can spice up the gameplay. Where Full Odds hunting traditionally involves random encounters, Method hunting can be more engaging.
With Mass Outbreaks in Legends: Arceus, players are racing against the clock while firing balls and sticky globs as hordes of attacking Pokemon. Alphas can spawn and wreck a player’s run if they aren’t careful, and it doubles as a way to farm money and materials.
Dynamax Adventures involves strategically battling and guesswork using random Pokemon. SoS Chaining requires players to preserve an opposing Pokemon as long as possible so it can continuously call for backup. And Shiny Sandwiches demands players grind Tera Raids for the necessary ingredients.
So, if running around grass patches or soaring above droves of Pokemon for hours on end doesn’t sound like fun, Method Hunting is the way to go.
Why Full Odds Shiny Hunting Is More Meaningful
There are many reasons why you may find Full Odds hunting to outweigh method hunting, but the two most prevalent arguments are that they are “rarer” or that they hold more value. But both of these arguments are flawed as, unless you stream or record your hunts, it’s impossible to tell whether a legitimate Shiny Pokemon was hunted using a method or at full odds.
It’s All About The Journey
For some, Full Odds Shiny hunting isn’t about finding the Pokemon as much as it is about the long hunt. With method hunts, you can become expectant. You know the Pokemon will appear within the next hour, 30 minutes, or a handful of seconds. But if you reach the end of the 30-minute sandwich timer with no Shiny or even just one Shiny Pokemon, you’re left disappointed or frustrated.
Full Odds hunting removes that expectancy and replaces it with presentness. You’re in each moment of the hunt, encounters melt away, and the end goal is hazier than a method’s. Will this hunt end under odds, or will it be your longest hunt yet? Not knowing but continuing to hunt in spite of the odds can lead to some memorable moments.
Undeniable Subjective Value
That may sound like an oxymoron, but there is something undeniably special about a Pokemon found at Full Odds. Whether it takes one encounter or 10,000, a Full Odds Pokemon naturally holds a special place inside a trainer’s heart.
This comes from someone who prefers method hunting due to their severe lack of patience, but my Full Odds Shinies are undoubtedly more special than most of my Method Hunted Pokemon. Take Pokemon Go, for example. I currently have 233 Shinies sitting in the mobile app. With the exception of a few – like 5 or 6 – none of them mean that much to me.
But I love First Frost, my first-encounter Full Odds Cryogonal, because of how he was found – despite not much caring for his Shiny form. Or Jagger, my Galarian Zigzagoon, I went well over odds for. And I can’t forget about Harold, my Shiny Galarian Slowpoke, who blessed me at just over 3,000 encounters during the first week of the Isle of Armor DLC.
That’s not to say Method hunts can’t be tied to memories. I hatched my Shiny Froakie in Scarlet & Violet during the Semifinals of the NBA Championship, which is why my Greninja is named Himmy Butler instead of Midnight. But that doesn’t hold a candle to my Full Odds Binacle, which I hunted by smashing rocks in Gen 6 the month after my daughter was born.
Shiny Pokemon & Chill
The final reason to hunt Full Odds may not matter to most, but it’s the simplest method of hunting. There’s little to no setup; you can start hunting at any point in a playthrough, and it doesn’t require much effort beyond some endurance.
If you’re watching a movie, streaming and want to focus more on chat, or don’t have the spoons to farm resources with randoms, Full Odds hunting is for you. The barrier to entry is as low as it gets and doesn’t require much focus, especially if you’re hunting in Legends: Arceus, where audio cues are your best friend.
I completely understand if you clicked on this piece expecting to see a definitive answer, and the lack thereof may leave some disappointed. But the truth is, there is no “best” way to Shiny Hunt Pokemon.
If you’re new to hunting and aren’t sure where to start, I hope this guide helps you decide which way is best for you.