PokéBase - Pokémon Q&A
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When building an LC team, you usually can’t do 252 in a stat. I’m wondering if this is because each Pokémon in LC has a max on how high a stat is. Not the EVs, there are obviously a max for each species, but the stat when EVs+IVs+Nature are added. For example, Chinchou can have 220 EVs in speed and with Timid it hits a max of 17 speed (not including a Choice Scarf).

I hope this wasn’t too confusing.

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Due to idiosyncrasies of the stat formula, each additional stat point requires (400 / Level) EVs; at LC we have Level = 5, so the number of EVs required is 80. The first point starting from 0 EVs may require fewer than 80, owing to aftereffects produced by base stats, but once you know where the threshold for that first point is, any further points you get from EVs will require exactly 80 more each, and if you reach a jump point at 176 or higher, you can no longer hold enough EVs in that stat to get to the next point so there's no sense putting in any more.

Specifically:

  • If a base stat ends in the digit 4 (and assuming the IV component is maxed out), the first stat point from EVs will be reached in just 4 EVs, and as a result, a fourth point can be obtained at 244 compared to not investing at all.
  • If the base stat ends in 3, the first EV point is reached at 12, and this is the only case where you can benefit from going all the way to 252, getting the fourth point there.
  • Base stats ending in digits other than 4 or 3 can only get three additional stat points compared to a 0-EV stat. Specifically, a last digit of 2/1/0/9/8/7/6/5 means the first EV point will come at 20/28/36/44/52/60/68/76 respectively, and the third point will land between 180-236 in the aforementioned "dead zone" where there's no sense in investing anything else.

All of Chinchou's base stats end in 5, 6, 7, or 8, leaving them at the "worst-case" end of the scale where even the first point is furthest away, and there's no hope of a 4-point gain in any stat from EVs.

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Thanks! I am now going to go around pretending that I understand math.

But really, this is a great answer! :)