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How to make the best Pokémon Scarlet and Violet sandwiches

Sandwiches give passive buffs to you and your Pokémon, but they can be tough to make

a ham sandwich on a table, surrounded by ingredients, with an eevee pick holding it together Image: Game Freak/The Pokémon Company, Nintendo
Nicole Carpenter is a senior reporter specializing in investigative features about labor issues in the game industry, as well as the business and culture of games.

From our research, it’s not all that hard to make a good sandwich in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet — at least for the simpler ones. Pokémon will eat pretty much every combination you create. Of course, if you want larger buffs, you’re going to have to make sure that you get all the ingredients on the bottom bread and that the stack stays upright, or else the power level for a particular buff may lower.

It’s not hard at all with simple sandwiches: Just aim a little behind the back of the bread and ingredients will land where you want them. If you aim exactly in the middle of the bread, your ingredients could just slide off the front.

A sandwich in a Pokemon Scarlet and Violet screenshot with a purple tablecloth Image: Game Freak/The Pokémon Company, Nintendo via Polygon

How to stack sandwiches for optimal buffs

More complex sandwiches require a bit of strategy to put together. My best tip is to start with a solid base and work up from there. And by “solid base,” I mean put your flattest stuff on the bottom. Wedge smaller, more finicky things between other ingredients to keep them in place. For ingredients that can roll, like chorizo, I like to lock them in place between something with a bit of girth, like bacon.

Regardless, having a solid base is important. The ingredients will interact with each other as they’re placed, and the more ingredients you add, the more finicky the sandwich becomes. The game is pretty forgiving in awarding stars to sandwiches — one through three — but if your stack collapses, you’ll probably get less stars.

Whether or not the ingredients have synergy isn’t at all related to taste. Spread mayo and mustard on your fruit sandwich. Stack a sandwich only with meat. Go vegetarian — and minimal — with just herbs and spices. Instead, it’s about making the combination of buffs you want to use, stuff that’ll help you on your journey.

Why you should make sandwiches with friends

Here’s a hot tip: If you prepare sandwiches with friends, you’ll have a bigger piece of bread to work with, making it a little easier to stack ingredients.

Pokémon Scarlet and Violet’s stacked sandwich on a blue tablecloth Image: Game Freak/The Pokémon Company, Nintendo via Polygon

But how to make a sandwich that’s right for you?

That’s another story. It depends on your goals at this very moment: What are you doing in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet? Are you looking for shiny eggs? Or do you want to pick up a certain type of item, or maybe increase Fairy-type spawns? You’ll want to choose your sandwich ingredients to best make use of its passive buffs, according to your own goals.

You can understand more about how a specific sandwich may impact you by learning about the ingredients. There are a number of different passive buffs that come from sandwiches.

  • Encounter Power: More likely to find certain types
  • Catching Power: More likely catches will succeed
  • Raid Power: More rewards from Tera Raid Battles
  • Teensy Power: More likely to find small Pokémon
  • Humungo Power: More likely to find large Pokémon
  • Item Drop Power: More materials found after battle
  • Egg Power: More likely to find Pokémon Eggs
  • Sparkling Power: More likely to find Shiny Pokémon
  • Exp. Point Power: More Exp. Points gained
  • Title Power: More likely to find Pokémon with titles

Condiments, which are the spreadable or pourable items that are applied to sandwiches automatically, seem to change the type of buff, while fillings seem to adjust what elemental type the buff applies to. And then there’s the flavor to consider: Sweet ingredients are matched to Egg Power, while bitter ingredients make Item Drop Power. Salty items like ham seem to increase Encounter Power. The taste category of each ingredient is mentioned in the descriptions of each item.

The system is complex, but Pokémon website Serebii has compiled a list of ingredients and their type boosts, which makes things a bit easier to figure out. For instance, they’ve figured out what each ingredient will impact when you’re building your own custom sandwiches — like chorizo boosting fire-type buffs.

There’s a lot of trial and error to it, but building off these pre-made recipes could help in figuring out how to optimize sandwiches. Data miners are already figuring out the easiest and most efficient way to use sandwiches for shiny hunting. Those recipes require Herba Mystica, though, which is pretty hard to come by — it’s given out as a reward for five-star raid battles, and not always.

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