Everyone knows that Shiny Pokémon are supposed to be rare — there’s only a 1 in 4,096 chance you’ll find a monster in a special color, unless you use a special method to increase your odds. But Pokémon Sword and Shield has introduced another type of Shiny to the mix, which, if found, will enter the battle with a slightly different type of animation.
Players are calling these ultra-rare monsters “square Shinies,” because their animations appear diamond-like, rather than the typical sparkles that you see for most Shinies. According to hackers who have looked at the files, there’s only a 1 in 16 chance your Shiny will be a square Shiny. Which, statistically speaking, means most people stumbling onto a Shiny will find the standard sparkles, not the square ones.
Shiny Pokémon rarity has been split! Same 1:4096 odds to obtain a shiny, but there are two types of shiny. 15/16 show stars, 1/16 show squares. Square rarity is 1 in 65536!— Kurt (@Kaphotics) November 20, 2019
Basically, if your Trainer ID cleanly matches the PID (xor), it will be squares rather than stars. pic.twitter.com/Lerr23LtB7
Here’s what it looks like in action — note that it’s a subtle effect, but still, it’s different.
UHHH SO THIS WAS LITERALLY MY FIRST CAPTURE OH MY GOD #PokemonSwordShield #NintendoSwitch pic.twitter.com/c70VQhtzok— Tor (@torkirby) November 15, 2019
so apparently my Elephant is a rare square shiny or smth #PokemonSwordShield #NintendoSwitch pic.twitter.com/5uvgdb8u9y— Bro I'm a Birthday Cake kinnie (@KiwiBaskerville) November 20, 2019
Well seems like my shiny Shiftry is actually an ultra rare "square shiny"... lucky me #PokemonEpeeBouclier #NintendoSwitch pic.twitter.com/KaW54mwJjh— Liam Powell (@BSoDLiam) November 20, 2019
The odds differ depending on what method you use to Shiny hunt. Random Shiny encounters and breeding have the 1 in 16 chance, but if you’re using the chain method to Shiny hunt, then the odds are inverted — there’s a 15 in 16 chance they’ll be squares.
For completionists who feel they need every single form of monster available for their compendium, this might sound like a nightmare. But, at least one Shiny hunter isn’t worried.
“For me it’s about the Shiny, regardless of Sparkles!” Shiny hunter aDrive told Polygon.