Shiny Charizard Guide: Gen I’s Fan Favorite Made Even Cooler

Latest posts by Jesus Cruz, Lifelong Pokémon Fan (see all)

Shiny Charizard, the most coveted shiny version out of every Pokémon that exists in the game. Having a shiny Charizard means that you put in a lot of effort, you spend a lot of time into the game, and you didn’t give up until you got it.

But, if this is the first time you discover the shiny versions of Pokémon card and you don’t know what it is, we will explain it briefly for you.

A shiny Pokémon is a Pokémon but with different colors than the original one. In this case, a normal Charizard is orange, but its shiny version has more like a dark grey color instead of the orange it should have. This mechanic was introduced in the second generation with the Game Boy Color in Gold, Silver, and Crystal.

People are so excited by getting a shiny because it is one of the rarest things you can see in the game; exactly, the probability of it happening before the sixth generation was 1 in 8192, and after the sixth generation is 1 in 4096. They can show themselves as a wild encounter, like an egg hatch, as a gifted Pokémon (like when you get your starter in the game’s adventure).

There’s a problem with the shiny Charizard: it is way more challenging than usual just because Charmander (its pre-evolution) is a starter Pokémon, which means you can’t catch a wild Charmander Charmeleon or Charizard in the games. Nonetheless. Many methods can help us with Shiny Charizard hunting, so let’s get started!

Gen 2: Gold, Silver, and Crystal: Shiny Ditto method

Shiny ditto

The only way to have a shiny Charizard in this game is through the Shiny Ditto method. With this method, you can have a shiny Ditto, which we will use for breeding Pokémon. If you breed a Pokémon with a shiny one, the possibilities of the new Pokémon from being shiny are really high, increasing them to 1 in 64.

Before doing this method, you have to transfer a Charizard to the Gen 2 games. Do that, and then you can now do the technique.

You will need two Game Boy Color, one with a Gen 1 game (Red, Blue or Yellow) and the other one with a Gen 2 game (Gold, Silver or Crystal). You can also do this with two 3DS and Red, Blue or Yellow that were released for the Virtual Console and also Gold, Silver and Crystal.

So, for doing this method, we will have to:

  1. Catch a shiny Pokémon in Gold, Silver or Crystal. This is easy since we can use the shiny Gyarados from Lake of Rage. Be sure this Gyarados doesn’t have any object, or else you’ll not be able to transfer it to Red, Blue or Yellow.
  2. Now, we will transfer that Gyarados to Pokémon Red, Blue or Yellow.
  3. We are going to Saffron City, where we have to look for the Copycat, a girl that copies you. She will give you the TM31, Mimic. Teach this move to Gyarados.
  4. Transfer Gyarados to Gold, Silver, or Crystal and go to Blackthorn City, where you have to find the Move Deleter and delete every Gyarados’ move, except for Mimic.
  5. Now, we will look for a wild Ditto that has to be slower than Gyarados. You can find a Ditto in Routes 13, 14, 15 and 23 and in the Cerulean Cave. In Pokémon Yellow, Ditto only appears in the Pokémon Mansion. We recommend doing this method in Route 23 for Red and Blue and in the Pokémon Mansion for Yellow.
  6. Look for a battle against a wild Ditto. Gyarados has to attack first, and on its first turn, it has to use Mimic. After using Mimic, you can see a display of the moves you can copy, and you have to copy Transform.
  7. The wild Ditto will use Transform too, and it will convert itself into Gyarados. This Gyarados only knows Mimic, and you copied Transform, so the only move the transformed Ditto can do is Transform. Let the wild Ditto do Transform again.
  8. After you let Ditto use Transform again, it is time to catch it.
  9. After you caught it, it is time to heal it and transfer it to Gold, Silver, or Crystal, and you are done; you now have a Shiny Ditto!

The rest is breeding this Shiny Ditto with Charizard and hatch their eggs until you get the Shiny Charizard.

Gen 3: Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald, Leaf Green, and Fire Red: Soft Resetting or Egg Hatching.

You can’t have a Charizard in Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald, but you can have one, as your starter, in Leaf Green and Fire Red. Sadly, there’s no method to increase your chances of having a Shiny Charizard, so we only can use soft resetting.

Soft resetting is a method in which you save your game before receiving your Charmander, then check out if the Charmander is shiny or not and then reset your Game Boy Advance with the buttons A + B + Select + Start you get a shiny Charmander.

This way, you don’t have to turn off your console to reset, saving some time. Remember that the possibilities of getting a shiny are 1 in 8192, so you have to be patient and soft resetting until you get your Shiny Charmander.

Game Boy

If you don’t like to be soft resetting your game, you can breed Charizard with a Ditto and start hatching eggs until you get a Shiny Charmander. The same thing with soft resetting: be patient and constant, and you’ll get it soon.

You can obtain Ditto in Gen 3 in the following locations:

  • Ruby and Sapphire: Trading one from Emerald, Leaf Green or Fire Red.
  • Emerald: Desert Underpass.
  • Leaf Green and Fire Red: Routes 13, 14, 15, in the Pokémon Mansion and Cerulean Cave.

Gen 4: Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, HeartGold, SoulSilver: Soft Resetting or Egg Hatching using Masuda Method

You can’t find a Charmander or a Charizard in Diamond, Pearl or Platinum; the only way to get it is through trading it from HeartGold or SoulSilver (In which you can get one as a gift from Professor Oak) or using the Pal Park mechanic.

You can do the classic Soft Resetting or the Egg Hatching to get a Shiny Charmander, but you can also use the Masuda Method from now on.

Let’s explain first how to transfer a Charizard from Gen 3 games to Gen 4 through the Pal Park, and then we will explain how to use the Masuda Method.

Pal Park Mechanic

To use the Pal Park Mechanic, you have to have a Ruby, Sapphire, Emerald, Leaf Green or Fire Red cartridge and insert it in the Nintendo DS slot for GBA games. Remember, those two games have to have the same language, or else you can use this mechanic.

You can select the six Pokémon you can transfer from Gen 3 to Gen 4, and in the Gen 4 games, you’ll get access to a park where you have to find your Pokémon and catch them again. You’ll have 6 Pal Balls; these don’t fail, so basically, catching your Pokémon again is just symbolism.

You can find the Pal Park in route 221 in Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum or Fuchsia City in HeartGold and SoulSilver.

Masuda Method

Since Gen 4, a new mechanic was introduced, named Masuda Method. Its name came from after Junichi Masuda, the music director of the Pokémon games, explained it in his blog in 2007.

The method consists of breeding two different Pokémon from two games with different languages. With only that, you can increase your possibilities of getting a shiny Pokémon to 1 in 1638. This mechanic was introduced as an incentive to use the brand new global trading. Then, for using this method, it’s better to find a copy of Pokémon with a different language than you usually use and trade a Ditto out of it because you can breed any Pokémon with Ditto. You can breed that Ditto with the Charizard you got from the Pal Park or from HeartGold/SoulSilver, and you eventually will get a shiny Charizard!

Gen 5: Black, White, Black 2 and White 2: PokéTransfer and the Shiny Charm

PokéTransfer and the Shiny Charm

Once again, there’s no way to get a Charizard in those games; you have to transfer them from Gen 4 to Gen 5, this time with the help of the Poké Transfer.

The Poké Transfer works the same way the Pal Park works, but this time you’ll need 2 Nintendo DS, one with your Gen 4 game and the other one with your Gen 5 game. With the DS with your Gen 4 game, you have to go to the DS menu and search for the DS Download Mode. Now all you have to do is go to your Gen 5 game, go to the Poké Transfer (Route 15 in all Gen 5 games), and start the process.

To access the Poké Transfer, you should have the National Pokédex and have won the Pokémon League.

This is the only way to get Charizard into Gen 5. We recommend doing this in Black 2 and White 2 since you can get an object named Shiny Charm in those games.

The Shiny Charm can increase the possibilities of getting a Shiny Pokémon through wild encounters or breeding to 1 in 2731. You’ll get this item after completing the National Pokédex. You can mix using this item and the Masuda Method to increase your chances of getting a Shiny Charizard even more.

You can get the Shiny Charm in White 2 and Black 2 after completing the National Pokédex; you have to talk with Cedric Juniper and he will give it to you.

Gen 6: X, Y, Omega Ruby, and Alpha Sapphire: Soft Resetting, Masuda Method and the Friend Safari

Shiny Charizard

We can say that X and Y is one of the easiest games to get a Shiny Pokémon since from here, Game Freak increased the shiny possibilities, and now they are 1 in 4096.

Finally, we have plenty of options to have a Shiny Charizard once again. When you get to Lumiose City and find Professor Sycamore, you can get into a battle against him. If you defeat him, he will let you choose one of the three starters from Kanto, and obviously, for this, we want Charmander. You can freely Soft Reset your console after saving until you get a shiny Charmander.

You can also complete the National Pokédex to get the Shiny Charm and combine it with the Masuda Method to get a shiny Charmander. And you can also get a Charmander with the Friend Safari. Let’s explain the Friend Safari since you can get a lot of shinies from here:

Friend Safari

This place is like an ordinary Pokemon Safari, but you can get access to one of it for every single friend you have added as your friend in your 3DS, and yes, there’s no problem if your friend doesn’t have Pokémon X or Y. Every friend will give you access to a specific Safari with three Pokémon of the same type. And, of course, you can get Charmander if you get a Fire-type safari.

We say that you can get many shinies here since every Pokémon from the friend safari has a higher chance of being shiny (Exactly, 1 in 819), and if you have the Shiny Charm, this chance can be even higher (Exactly, 1 in 585). This means that if we want the shiny Charmander, we have to look for a friend who gives us access to a Fire-type safari. You have to know that it isn’t guaranteed that you’ll get a Charmander in the Fire-type safari, so you have to have a bit of luck to get it.

On the other hand, you can’t get a Charizard in Omega Ruby or Alpha Sapphire; you have to trade it from X and Y. To get the Shiny Charizard, you have to take the traditional way.

The Masuda Method combined with Shiny Charm while breeding Charizard and a bit of luck should be enough. You can get the Shiny Charm from Professor Birch after completing the National Pokédex.

Gen 7: Sun, Moon, Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon: Island Scan

Once again, we can’t get a Charizard in Sun and Moon; to get one here, you have to trade it from X and Y. But in Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, you get Charmander through the Island Scan.

Island Scan

This is a RotomDex function; you can unlock it by getting 100 points in the QR Scanner. The Island Scan allows you to find and catch exclusive Pokémon that you can’t see in any other way, including Charmander. You can find it on Route 3 only on Sundays.

We recommend breeding it with the Masuda Method and the Shiny Charm for getting a shiny Charizard. This time, you can get it after completing the Alolan Pokédex and talking to Iwao, the Pokémon developer; you can find him in the Game Freak HQ in Heahea City.

Gen 8: Let’s Go Pikachu and Eevee, Shield and Sword: Capture Combos and Pokémon Den

You only have the classic methods to get a shiny Charizard: It’s easy to get a Charmander in Let’s Go Pikachu and Eevee since you can get a wild one in Routes 3, 4, and in the Rock Tunnel. You can make a Capture Combo with them until you get a shiny one.

Capture Combos

Doing a capture combo is really easy. You only have to capture Charmander over and over again until a Shiny Charmander appears. There’s no problem if another wild Pokémon appears or you change your route to find it; just capture Charmander and run away if another Pokémon that isn’t Charmander appears. You can increase your chances by obtaining the Shiny Charm; you can get it from the Director of the game; you can find him in the Celadon Condominiums after catching all the Pokémon from the Pokédex.

Pokémon Den

In Sword and Shield, you can find Charmander only in Max Raid Battles, in the following spots: Hammerlock Hills (its Den can be located at the south) and in the Lake of Outrage (its Den can be found at the west). The probability of finding a Shiny Pokémon in a Pokémon Den is 1 in 4096, and it isn’t affected by the Shiny Charm.

Getting a shiny Charmander will be determined when the Den itself becomes active, and you can use the Wishing Pieces to reactivate the Pokémon Den until you get a shiny Charmander.

You can also get a free Charmander; Leon gives you one after you complete the Pokémon League. You can find him in his home in Postwick. You can use the Masuda Method + Shiny Charm to breed the Charmander until you get a shiny one.


Question: In which generation is it easier to get a shiny Charizard?

Answer: Despite being an old generation, we personally think that the Gen 2 shiny Charizard is the easier Gen to have a shiny Charizard, just by the Shiny Ditto Method. It is easy to do and you can have it in a day or two.

Question: In which generation is it harder to get a shiny Charizard?

Answer: We personally think that Gen 3 is where you can have a tough time in your Shiny Charizard hunting since you will work with the old probabilities (1 in every 8192 to have it) and you can’t use things like the Masuda Method or the Shiny Charm Method since they didn’t exist in this Gen.

Question: How hard is getting a shiny Charizard in Pokémon Sword and Shield?

Answer: You have a lot of options to get a shiny Charizard in those games; Leon gives you a Charmander and then you can breed it until getting a shiny, you can force a shiny Charmander out of the Pokémon Den and you can have the Shiny Charm and hunt it down in the wilderness. So we personally think it isn’t hard at all, you only have to have patience.

Quest: Can the charmander from Leon be shiny

No, the charmander in Leon’s room cannot be shiny, no matter how many times you try to restart or replay.


Finding a Shiny Charizard is one of the hardest things you can do in the game, and it’s because it is a starter. There are many ways to get a Shiny Pkémon; with the Poké Radar and doing capture combos in Gen 4 is a good example, but you can do this with Charizard.

Shiny Charizard and the other shiny starters and some event Pokémon are strange and exclusive, and having them is a showcase of determination, patience, and constancy. If you try to get a shiny Charizard, the last thing we can say to you is Good luck; you’ll need it.

Other Types of Charizards

If you are curious about the other Charizard classes, check these out:

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