[Updated] Pokémon Gold, Silver and Crystal Shiny Guide

Wanting to farm for Shiny Pokémon in generation 2? Learn about all the Shiny Pokémon you can obtain in Gold, Silver and Crystal, and how to breed others!

Update (10:00 PM January 26, 2017): We’ve updated the guide to include new details specific to Pokémon Crystal – specifically, the Odd Egg.

The Pokémon franchise has developed greatly in regards to how the game works in general. Many current Shiny breeders will be playing a copy of Pokémon Gold, Silver and Crystal (GSC) ready to grab their Destiny Knots and Everstones so they can breed the best Shiny possible. Little do they know what awaits them. A myriad of changes has come to the franchise since these games were released. This guide will serve to navigate the old yet new waters of Shiny/breeding mechanics for generation two’s games.


Many breeders are familiar with IVs (Individual Values.) It is a 0-31 number assigned to each stat to give Pokémon individuality. Well, IVs did not exist until generation three. In generation two, there were instead DVs (Deter Values.) They work effectively the same way as IVs, except the numbers range from 0-15 instead. This will be important to know for anyone wanting to breed for shinies later on.

Mechanics Missing from Generation 2

Many mechanics that breeders rely on to make the process as easy as possible simply have not been added yet as of these games. Destiny Knot’s functionality is gone as well as Everstone’s since natures did not exist yet. Abilities also did not exist, so there are two layers of the breeding process that a breeder will no longer have to consider in GSC versions. Consequently there is no Flame Body Ability to make Eggs hatch faster.

For Shiny hunters, there is no Shiny Charm. The Masuda Method also does not work, although trading locally for a foreign Pokémon would be a major hassle even if it did. There is also no kind of DexNav/SOS chaining to rely on. If you are unfamiliar with any of these mechanics, do not worry as they do not exist in these older games!

Shiny Breeding

So with all of these helpful shiny-hunting mechanics gone, it may seem like hunting for Shiny Pokémon will be an incredibly difficult task. That is because there is no way to improve Shiny odds in the wild. But many will find that breeding for Shiny Pokémon is more effective than one might think. In generation two, whether a Pokémon was Shiny or not was actually calculated by DVs. What does this mean? If a parent is Shiny, then the odds of their child being Shiny are greatly increased. Shiny odds will increase from the base chance of 1/8192 to an insanely high rate of 1/64!

Luckily, all GSC players will encounter a certain shiny Gyarados at some point in the story. Catch it, and breeders will possess a wonderful breeding parent to get things started. Make sure that you catch a male or you will be struggling to get a shiny of a different species later on! But breeding for a Shiny that can’t breed with Gyarados will be challenging.

Egg Groups

Once you obtain your male Shiny Gyarados from the Lake of Rage, you will be ready to breed for Shinies. But how will you know if the shiny Pokémon that you want is breedable with Gyarados? You must know about Egg groups for this. Check out this list of every Pokémon’s Egg group. Note that Gyarados is in the Egg groups Water 2 and Dragon. Any Pokémon in these two groups can be immediately bred with Shiny Gyarados. If the Shiny you want is not in these groups, things become tricky. You will have to chain Shiny breed for the Pokémon that you want.

For example, let’s say that I want a Shiny Totodile. Its Egg groups are Monster and Water 1. While Gyarados will not work as a parent, maybe breeding for another Shiny parent will work. Charmander is a part of the Dragon and Monster groups. Dragon makes it compatible with Gyarados, and Monster makes it compatible with Totodile. So use Gyarados to breed a Shiny Charmander, and then Charmander with Totodile. This method is more time consuming, but will still be your best chance unless you happen to have a Shiny Ditto. If only there was an easy way to get one…

Shiny Ditto Trick

One interesting fact about Ditto is that in the first generation, Ditto copied the DVs or the opposing Pokémon if it uses Transform twice in a row. Why is this useful? If set up properly , you can effectively make a Ditto shiny when you catch it. The catch is that you will need a second 3DS with a Virtual Console edition of Pokémon Red, Blue, or Yellow Version. A friend with a 3DS would be the easiest way to accomplish this, although owning two of them works just as well.

In generation 1, Gyarados learns Mimic through TM. If you transfer your Shiny Gyarados to a Generation 1 game and teach it Mimic, you can essentially get free Shiny Dittos. But the setup is key to this strategy. Your Gyarados should know Mimic and all other moves should have 0 PP remaining. Go to where Ditto can be found, and start the battle. Immediately use Mimic to copy Ditto’s Transform. Ditto will now transform into Gyarados. Wait another turn and let Ditto use transform a second time. Once it has transformed twice, it is now effectively a Shiny! Transfer it to your generation two game and awe at the glistening blue Ditto. You now have a parent that can get you any Shiny that you want (minus the obvious non-breedables such as Lugia and Mewtwo.) Since the Ditto is owned by a different trainer, Eggs will hatch faster as well! Once you transfer your Gyarados back, it will retain its Shiny majesty as well.

The Odd Egg

Like many other Pokémon games, the 3DS Virtual Console release of Pokémon Crystal has gift Pokémon. A new gift is the Odd Egg, which is given to you by the Daycare Man. The Egg hatches into one of seven different Baby Pokémon introduced in Generation 2: Pichu, Cleffa, Igglybuff, Tyrogue, Magby, Elekid, and Smoochum. In addition to being able to hatch one of these Pokémon, they also all come with the special move Dizzy Punch.

One of the notable aspects of the Odd Egg is that the hatched Pokémon has a higher chance to be Shiny, adding up to a 14% Shiny rate! Non-Shiny hatches from the Odd Egg will have 0 IVs (Individual Values). Below are the probabilities for each species and if they can be Shiny.

Pokemon Chance (Regular) Chance (Shiny)
Pichu 8% 1%
Cleffa 16% 3%
Igglybuff 16% 3%
Tyrogue 10% 1%
Smoochum 14% 2%
Elekid 12% 2%
Magby 10% 2%

You can also evolve what you hatch and use it to breed with other Pokémon species, increasing the Shiny chance for the offspring. With each of these Baby Pokémon evolving into Pokémon within different Egg groups, it would be great to get them all on one file!

Thanks to a handy glitch, you can do just that! One of the biggest glitches in Pokémon Crystal is the Duplication or Duplicate Glitch. This glitch lets you clone Pokémon or Eggs within your PC boxes.

To perform this glitch, you need to place a Pokémon or Egg in a box, change your box, and then save and turn off the power right as the word ‘power’ begins to appear. (For Pokémon Gold and Silver you turn off the power slightly earlier.) The timing is tricky but if done right you will have the deposited Pokémon in your box and party at the same time!

With this glitch in mind you can continue cloning the Egg and hatching it to get all the options as Shiny Pokémon to breed. Before you begin this glitch, you need to save the game before getting the Odd Egg.

As stated, each Baby Pokémon evolves into something within a different Egg group. Below is the list of Baby Pokémon final evolutions and their egg groups.

Raichu: Field and Fairy
Clefable: Fairy
Wigglytuff: Fairy
Hitmonchan/Hitmonlee: Human-Like
Electabuzz: Human-Like
Magmar: Human-Like
Jynx: Human-Like

While these groups do overlap, they still allow you more access to breeding Shiny Pokémon easier, as the Odd Egg is the best way to get Shiny Pokémon outside of the Red Gyarados at the Lake of Rage. The Jynx line however are always female and cannot be used for breeding different species of Shiny Pokémon.


While there is no way to effectively farm Shinies in the wild, breeding for them in Generation 2 is actually even more effective than the Masuda Method has ever been. Get your male Shiny Gyarados, and let it be an amazing breeding parent. If you have the resources, the Ditto strategy allows you to get an even better parent than Shiny Gyarados. And if playing Crystal, you can have an additional seven Shiny parents, spanning three additional Egg Groups to those Gyarados is within. Keep these things in mind when wanting a Shiny, and you will have an incredibly effective method for obtaining them.

Which Shiny do you hope on hatching the most in Pokémon Gold, Silver and Crystal?

Co-written with bobandbill and Z25.
Edited by bobandbill, BadSheep, Jake, Rabinov, Radiating, and Rainbow.