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Formula in Generation V onward, if different
- This article is about the game mechanic. For the Pokémon Adventures round whose Japanese title translates to "Escape!!", see PS268. For the Escape Orb in the Mystery Dungeon series, see Wonder Orb.
In the core series Pokémon games, it is possible to escape (Japanese: 逃げる escape) from a battle with a wild Pokémon by selecting Run (Japanese: にげる Run) on the main battle screen. However, escape is not guaranteed; whether the player is successful at running away from the battle is determined by a calculation involving the speed of the combatants. When the escape is successful, the battle ends immediately. When it is not successful, the wild Pokémon will use a move.
It is not possible to escape from in-game Trainer battles. However, in player battles in the Cable or Wireless Clubs, attempting to escape will cause the battle to end immediately. If only one player attempts to escape, the battle counts as a loss against them, but if both players attempt to escape in the same turn, the battle ends in a draw.
Entering a battle with a wild Pokémon and then escaping counts the Pokémon as being seen in the Trainer's Pokédex. In Generations I and II, if the player runs from any of these Pokémon, it becomes permanently unavailable. Starting in Generation III, if the player runs from a Legendary Pokémon, the Pokémon respawns.
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Specifically, it needs everything after Generation 4.
Generation I and II
- A is the current Speed of the player's active Pokémon,
- B is the opposing Pokémon's Speed divided by 4, mod 256, and
- C is the number of times the player has tried to escape during the battle (counting the current attempt). If the player's Pokémon attacks, this number is set to 0.
If F is greater than 255, the player escapes automatically. Otherwise, a random number is generated between 0 and 255. If that number is less than F, the player escapes. If not, the escape fails and the player's Pokémon does not make a move that turn. If B is equal to 0, escape is automatically a success.
Generation III and IV
- A is the unmodified Speed of the player's active Pokémon,
- B is the opposing Pokémon's unmodified Speed
- C is the number of times the player has tried to escape during the battle (counting the current attempt).
A random number is generated between 0 and 255. If that number is less than F, the player escapes. If not, the escape fails and the player's Pokémon does not make a move that turn.
Pokémon cannot attempt to flee from Trainer battles or battles during trials. In the Generation II games only, the player cannot attempt to flee from Pokémon encountered as traps in the Team Rocket's Hideout, the GS Ball Celebi, the Tin Tower Suicune (in Crystal), and the scripted Red Gyarados. In the Battle Pyramid, escape is not guaranteed if the player's Pokémon is faster.
Several conditions prevent a Pokémon from even attempting to flee.
- A Pokémon with the Ability Shadow Tag prevents opposing Pokémon from attempting to flee. (From Generation IV onward, Pokémon with Shadow Tag are unaffected by Shadow Tag.)
- A Pokémon with the Ability Arena Trap prevents opposing grounded Pokémon from attempting to flee.
- A Pokémon with the Ability Magnet Pull prevents opposing Steel-type Pokémon from attempting to flee.
- A Pokémon affected by a trapping move (including binding moves and Ingrain) is prevented from attempting to flee (from Generation II onward).
Several conditions allow a Pokémon to always successfully flee from a wild battle.
- Using an escape item (Poké Doll, Fluffy Tail, or Poké Toy) causes the player to escape from a wild Pokémon (regardless of trapping moves and Abilities).
- In a wild Single Battle (including an SOS Battle as long as there is currently only a single opponent), using the move Teleport causes the Pokémon to flee, unless a trapping move or Ability prevents escape. From Generation V onward, Ingrain does not prevent Teleport from being successful.
- If the player's Pokémon is holding a Smoke Ball or has the Ability Run Away, its attempts to flee or Teleport are always successful (regardless of trapping moves and Abilities). In Generation II only, the Smoke Ball doesn't guarantee escape if a trapping move would prevent it.
- In the Battle Pyramid, Run Away does not guarantee escape, but it will be credited if a Pokémon with this Ability successfully flees.
- In Generation III and IV, if the player's Pokémon that has Run Away or a Smoke Ball faints, if the player attempts to flee instead of sending out another Pokémon, they will escape without fail.
- In Generation III only, the Smoke Ball has an animation when escaping using it. In Generation II, "Got away safely" redundantly appears after the message informing of escape via Smoke Ball.
- In Generation V only, a wild Pokémon holding a Smoke Ball cannot successfully Teleport if it is trapped by a trapping move or Ability (although the player's Pokémon can).
- From Generation VI onward, the player's Ghost-type Pokémon can always successfully flee, regardless of trapping moves or Abilities.
In a wild Single Battle (including an SOS Battle as long as there is currently only a single opponent), the moves Whirlwind, Roar, Dragon Tail, and Circle Throw force the target to flee, unless it has the Ability Suction Cups or has been affected by Ingrain. If a wild Pokémon's held Red Card is activated while it has no allies, it forces the player's Pokémon to flee.
Example (Generation I and II)
The player's Pokémon has a Speed of 25 and the wild Pokémon has a Speed of 100. The player tries to escape, but hasn't attempted to flee anytime earlier in the battle.
Since B isn't above 255, it is just left as is.
Since F isn't above 255, generate a random number between 0 and 255.
Generally speaking, the slower the Trainer's Pokémon and/or the faster the wild Pokémon, the harder it is to escape.
In Safari Zones during a Safari Game, Pokémon can escape from battle. The rate of escape is lowered by throwing BaitRBYFRLGDPPtHGSS (while the catch rate is also lowered) or PokéblocksRSE, and the rate of escape is raised by throwing RocksRBYFRLG, MudDPPtHGSS, or by "going near"RSE (while the catch rate is also raised).
In Pokémon X and Y, Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres will automatically flee before even the first turn. The player must encounter the Legendary Pokémon ten times before finally battling it in Sea Spirit's Den.
In Pokémon Gold, Silver, and Crystal, in addition to the roaming Legendary beasts, a few species of wild Pokémon can escape from battle. Much like roaming Pokémon, these Pokémon may attempt to flee immediately before they would use their move, and they will not attempt to flee when affected by trapping moves (such as Mean Look or Wrap), sleep, or freeze.
All Pokémon that can flee were intended to be more likely to be caught in a Fast Ball, but due to a programming error, only Magnemite, Grimer, and Tangela actually are more likely to be caught in a Fast Ball.
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Pokémon Sun, Moon, Ultra Sun, and Ultra Moon
In Pokémon Sun and Moon, there is a scripted battle against the Ultra Beast Nihilego during the player's first visit to Aether Paradise. This Nihilego, which cannot be caught, is scripted to flee on the fifth turn of battle, ending the battle and continuing the story. If Nihilego was unable to flee on that turn due to being trapped or in the semi-invulnerable turn of Sky Drop, it will not attempt to flee on subsequent turns.
Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!
In Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!, the capture mechanics are similar to that of Pokémon GO. Wild Pokémon have a chance of fleeing during an encounter after breaking out of a Poké Ball, except encounters for which the player must defeat the Pokémon in battle first (such as Snorlax and Legendary Pokémon). If the player has a Catch Combo, a wild Pokémon fleeing from the player will cause it to be reset, but the player fleeing from a wild Pokémon will not. Often, a wild Pokémon will perform its cry animation shortly before fleeing.
In spin-off games
Wild Pokémon escaping is a key aspect of capturing in Pokémon GO. Whenever the wild Pokémon breaks out of a thrown Poké Ball, there is a chance that it will run away, ending the encounter. Every species has a its own base flee rate, a flat probability of fleeing after breaking out of a Poké Ball. If the player chooses to run from a wild Pokémon encounter, the Pokémon will still remain on the overworld map until its spawn timer expires.
- For a list of Pokémon by their base flee rates, see list of Pokémon by catch rate (Pokémon GO)
Pokémon encountered as Field or Special Research rewards will never flee. Pokémon encountered as a result of a Raid Battle or Team GO Rocket battle flee when the player runs out of Premier Balls, but will not flee otherwise.
Every Pokémon that spawns on the map has a timer that can range from 15 to 60 minutes. If a player is currently tracking a nearby Pokémon using the app's interface, and that Pokémon's timer expires or the player walks out of tracking range, the game will notify that the Pokémon has fled.