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How do Affection Bonuses Work in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet?

A little love goes a long way.
pokemon scarlet violet garchomp wash
Image via Nintendo/The Pokemon Company

As the Pokemon anime has impressed upon us over the years, Pokemon aren’t just tools for fighting. They’re lifelong friends and companions that you get to know on a deep, personal level. When you and your Pokemon have a close bond, you’re not just friendlier; they’ll go the extra mile for you in a pinch. So, how do affection bonuses work in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet?

How do Affection Bonuses Work in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet?

Affection bonuses, also known as friendship bonuses, refer to the various perks you can get from maintaining a good relationship with your Pokemon. To clarify, “friendship” and “affection” used to be two separate systems in previous Pokemon games, but they’re synonymous in Scarlet and Violet.

Related: How to Find and Challenge a Tera Raid in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet

When you have a high friendship level with your Pokemon, they’ll grow at an accelerated rate, do better in combat to make you happy, and in a few cases, evolve. Here’s the precise list of affection bonuses you can get with high friendship in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet:

  • Your Pokemon will get boosted experience gain after wild and Trainer battles
  • Your Pokemon may hold on with 1 HP when taking a fatal blow in combat
  • Your Pokemon may instantly heal status ailments (Sleep, Paralysis, Poison, etc.) on its own
  • Your Pokemon will have a higher chance of inflicting critical hits
  • Certain Pokemon may evolve, either into a standard evolved form or a special one

What Raises and Lowers Friendship in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet?

Pokémon trainer at picnic eating sandwich
Image via Nintendo/The Pokémon Company

Obviously, if you want to make use of affection bonuses, you need to foster a strong and consistent relationship with your Pokemon. Generally speaking, doing things they like will increase their friendship, while things they don’t like will lower it.

The following actions and activities will raise your Pokemon’s friendship level:

  • Leveling up
  • Walking with them
  • Feeding them Vitamins
  • Feeding them certain Berries
  • Washing them at a Picnic
  • Giving them a Soothe Bell to hold
  • Catching them in a Luxury Ball

Meanwhile, the following actions and activities will lower your Pokemon’s friendship level:

  • Letting them faint in Battle (moreso if their opponent is a much higher level than them)
  • Feeding them Herbal medicine

In a nutshell, give your Pokemon tasty treats, train them up properly, pal around with them once in a while, and don’t let them get knocked out. They’ll love the heck out of you if you put the work in, and will do their hardest to make you happy as a result.

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