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The Pokémon Company unveiled the Terastal phenomenon as a new mechanic for Pokémon Scarlet and Violet during a Pokémon Presents livestream on Wednesday. Like the Mega Evolutions, Z-Moves and Dynamax Pokémon of the past, this will be the primary battle gimmick for Generation 9.

Every Pokémon in the game will have the ability to Terastallize in battle. Doing so will cause them to take on a shiny, crystallized form and gain a boost to certain moves. This mechanic effectively gives the Pokémon an extra same-type attack bonus, without adding any weaknesses on the defensive side.

According to a July leak from Centro Leaks, nearly every important non-playable character will make use of the Terastal phenomenon in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet. As a result, mastering this mechanic will likely be crucial to successfully navigating through the game.

More about the Terastal phenomenon in Pokémon Scarlet and Violet

Every single Pokémon in Scarlet and Violet has a Tera type that affects their Terastal form. This Tera type determines what type of moves get a boost, as well as the kind of crystallized item will sprout above their head.

For the most part, it seems a Pokémon’s Tera type will be the same as one of its traditional types. However, trainers can find Pokémon with rare Tera types, allowing them to boost different kinds of moves. These kinds of Pokémon are more common in a new co-op activity called Tera Raid Battles. Tera Raid Battles are not turn-based, meaning trainers can attack and heal on their own timing independent of their allies.

In addition, players who pre-order Pokémon Scarlet or Violet can obtain a special Pikachu that won’t be available in the game. This Pikachu will have Flying as its Tera type. This will also boost the unique move it knows, Fly.