At What Level Does Pikachu Evolve?

As the mascot of the Pokémon franchise, Pikachu is arguably the most popular and recognizable Pokémon. Known for its cute appearance and electrical powers, Pikachu is also popular among players of the games.

This adorable creature became even more popular when Ash Ketchum, the show’s protagonist, chose it as his starter Pokémon in the anime. Created in 1996 by Atsuko Nishida and Ken Sugimori, Pikachu was among the first generation of Pokémon. 

This Electric-type is popular in games because of its offensive capabilities and speed. It can also be found in a lot of Pokémon games, capitalizing on the success of its mascot.

Pikachu’s evolution line differs from other Pokémon, in that it does not evolve by level up. A lot of Pokémon evolve once they reach certain levels, allowing them to become stronger.

The Pikachu line does not do this. Instead, they have a different evolution process. Interestingly, in the anime, Ash Ketchum has chosen never to evolve his Pikachu. If you want to go down a different root, find the answers below. 

at what level Does Pikachu Evolve

What Level Does Pikachu Evolve At?

Unlike other Pokémon, Pikachu does not evolve by leveling up. Instead, it evolves by using a Thunder Stone. Pikachu evolves into Raichu, making it more powerful in battle.

Though Raichu is not as popular and well-known as Pikachu, it is still a really good Pokémon to use. Raichu has better offensive and defensive capabilities than Pikachu. As a result, it is a great Pokémon to have on your team.

What Level Does Alolan Pikachu Evolve At?

In the Alola region, Pikachu’s evolution is a little different. While regular Raichu is a pure Electric-type Pokémon, Alolan Raichu is an Electric/Psychic-type.

Despite this difference, Alolan Raichu and regular Raichu are obtained the same way. Any Pikachu in Alola that is exposed to a Thunder Stone will become Alolan Raichu. 

Where To Catch Pikachu?

Because it was included in the first generation of Pokémon, Pikachu has appeared in several of the games. It debuted in the very first pair of games, called Pokémon Red and Blue.

Despite this, it can only be caught in a few locations in each game. Below is a list of locations where Pikachu can be found in every game. 

  • Pokémon Red and Blue: in Kanto, Pikachu is found at the start of the game. Pikachu can be caught at Viridian Forest, where it is a rare encounter. It is more commonly found at the Power Plant, which is slightly later in the game. 
  • Pokémon Yellow: in this game, in which Pikachu is the mascot, this Pokémon is given to you at the start of the game by Professor Oak. Like Ash in the anime, Pikachu becomes the player’s starter Pokémon in this game. 
  • Pokémon Gold, Silver, and Crystal: Pikachu cannot be found in Johto, the main setting of this game. However, it can be spotted in the post-game. Pikachu appears in Kanto Route 2, though it is quite rare. 
  • Pokémon Ruby, Emerald, and Sapphire: in these games, Pikachu can only be caught in Hoenn’s Safari Zone. 
  • Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen: returning to Kanto, Pikachu can once again be found in either Viridian Forest or the Power Plant. 
  • Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum: in the Sinnoh region, Pikachu inhabits the Trophy Garden. Its unevolved form, Pichu, can also be located here. 
  • Pokémon HeartGold SoulSilver: in these games, Pikachu can only be captured during the post-game. In this case, it can once again be obtained in Viridian Forest. 
  • Pokémon Black and White/ Black 2 and White 2: Pikachu is not native to the Unova region, and so can only be acquired by transferring it. 
  • Pokémon X and Y: though a rare encounter, Pikachu can be obtained in Santalune Forest at the beginning of the games. Likewise, it can also be found in Kalos Route 3, though it is an uncommon spawn. 
  • Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire: Pikachu is not found in the wild in these two games. Instead, it will be given to you by a non-player character after you have participated in your first Pokémon contest. 
  • Pokémon Sun and Moon: in these Alola games, Pikachu will only appear in SOS battles. Coming to the aid of Pichu, Pikachu is only present in these SOS battles. As a warning, Pikachu is very rare in these games. Pichu is a rare encounter and in SOS battles it can either be joined by another Pichu, a Pikachu, or a Happiny. If you want a Pikachu or Raichu on your team, it may simply be more practical to capture and evolve Pichu. Pichu is located on Route 1 and Hau’oli City.
  • Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon: in these sequel versions of the Alola games, the situation is similar. Pikachu will only appear during SOS battles with Pichu on Route 1. However, one Pikachu can also be given to the player in Heahea City. 
  • Pokémon Let’s Go Pikachu/ Eevee: in Let’s Go Pikachu, the titular Pokémon is your starter. Like in Pokémon Yellow, it will be gifted to you by Professor Oak. Aside from this, in both games, it can once again be scouted in Viridian Forest. 
  • Pokémon Sword and Shield: in these two games, Pikachu is considerably more common. In Galar, it can be obtained in several locations, including Route 4, Stony Wilderness, and Rolling Fields. 

Frequently Asked Questions

When Will Pichu Evolve Into Pikachu?

Surprisingly to some, Pikachu is not the base form in this evolutionary line. Instead, Pichu is. Though very adorable, Pichu is quite a frail Pokémon.

Fortunately, it becomes more effective in battles when it evolves into Pikachu. Once again, this evolution is not by the standard level-up system. Instead, Pichu evolves when it is leveled up with high friendship. 

To get high friendship, you must treat your Pokémon well. There are many ways to increase friendship, such as getting your Pokémon up a level, giving it medicine, or using it in a Pokémon Gym battle.

However, your friendship with your Pokémon will decrease if it faints in battle or if you use medicines that lower friendship, such as Revival Herbs. 

Where Can You Find Thunder Stones?

Thunder Stones, the item needed to evolve both regular Pikachu and Alolan Pikachu, are fairly rare items in the Pokémon games. Fortunately, we have provided a comprehensive list of the locations of the Thunder Stones in every game: 

  • Pokémon Red, Blue, and Yellow: Thunder Stones cannot be found in the wild. Instead, they can be purchased at the Celadon Department Store. 
  • Pokémon Gold, Silver, and Crystal: in these games, a Thunder Stone can be obtained from Bill’s grandfather as a reward for showing him a Pichu. 
  • Pokémon Ruby, Emerald, and Sapphire: a Thunder Stone is located in New Mauville. In addition, at Route 124 they can be traded for Yellow Shards.
  • Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen: like in Red, Blue, and Yellow, they can be bought at Celadon Department Store. Furthermore, two Thunder Stones can be found in the Power Plant. 
  • Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum: in Sinnoh, Thunder Stones can be obtained in Sunyshore City and Route 229. Additionally, a Thunder Stone is present in Solaceon Ruins, though this is only available in Platinum. Multiple Thunder Stones are also located in the Underground. 
  • Pokémon HeartGold SoulSilver: once again, Bill’s grandfather will give players a Thunder Stone in the Sea Cottage. Aside from this, you can also acquire Thunder Stones by participating in the Bug-Catching Contest and for taking part in trials at the Pokéathlon Dome. 
  • Pokémon Black and White: for finite Thunder Stones, visit the Chargestone Cave and Shopping Mall Nine. In the Pokémon White version, there is a chance that Ken will give a Thunder Stone at White Forest. In Pokémon Black, Ken will give the player Thunder Stones at Black City. There is also a small chance of finding Thunder Stones in dust clouds, though wild Pokémon and other items can also be found in this method. 
  • Black 2 and White 2: like the previous games, a Thunder Stone can be located in Chargestone Cave. Moreover, the dust cloud method is also present in these games. A Thunder Stone can also be collected at Nimbasa City. 
  • Pokémon X and Y: Kalos Routes 10 and 11 are home to Thunder Stones. Inver may also give the player one at Route 18.
  • Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire: a single Thunder Stone is present in New Mauville. You can also trade Yellow Shards for them at Route 124.
  • Pokémon Sun and Moon: in these games, a Thunder Stone can be discovered at Alola Route 8. You can also buy evolution stones, such as Thunder Stones, in Konikoni City. 
  • Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon: as with the previous games, you can purchase Thunder Stones from Olivia’s shop in Konikoni Island. They can also be spotted on Route 9 and Paniola Ranch. A total of 6 Thunder Stones can be found at the Ultra Plant. 
  • Pokémon Let’s Go Pikachu/ Eevee: sadly, a Thunder Stone cannot be used to evolve the starter Pikachu in Pokémon Let’s Go Pikachu. However, you can use them to evolve wild Pikachus into Raichus. Thunder Stones are located at Route 10 and the Power Plant. Like with other games, you can also procure them from the Celadon Department Store. 
  • Pokémon Sword and Shield: you will be able to spot a Thunder Stone at North Lake Miloch. There is also a chance of obtaining them at the Lake of Outrage. 

Final Thoughts

Pikachu’s popularity is very understandable. However, Raichu is somewhat underappreciated by fans. This is despite being significantly more powerful than Pikachu. It is well worth evolving your Pikachu by exposing it to a Thunder Stone.