Pokémon’s stat system has been the same since 2002, with monsters gaining EVs in combat which are then used to determine a power boost which scales based on the Pokémon’s level. With Pokémon Let’s Go, Pikachu & Let’s Go, Eevee having no 'wild' and randomised combat, the system has changed once again and is now a bit more in-line with the setup seen in the first few games. Now, the stats do not scale. This new system is what the fan community is calling AVs (Awakening Values).

So what are AVs? Basically, for each stat, you can have 200 AVs and each AV is equal to 1 Stat Point regardless of level. That’s right; you can have an obscenely powerful Level 5 Pidgey if you max out its AVs while it's at a low level. This means you don’t have to get a Pokémon to Level 100 to make it completely viable, especially to face Master Trainers.

So, how do you get AVs on your Pokémon? The first method is by levelling up; with each level up you will gain 1 random AV. The second is by using Candy. Candy is the major new mechanic and there are 6 different candy kinds, one for each stat, with a Large and Extra Large variant. Each of the sizes of Candy can take you up to a specific AV value.

Regular Candy can boost your stat to 50 AVs, Large to 100 AVs and Extra Large goes all the way up to 200 AVs – but there’s a catch. You can only use Large Candy on Pokémon over Level 30 and Extra Large on those over Level 60, which does act as a limit.

In addition to this, the amount of Candy required to get 1 AV increases as you approach the cap. This means to max a stat using all 3 Candy, you’d require 1,039 Candy per stat, a total of 6,234 Candy; that's a lot of Candy. However, if you just use the higher size Candy, this decreases considerably as you’d only need 545 per stat.

Let's show that in a handy table, shall we?

Candy Level Requirement AV Cap Candy Needed From 0 AVs to Cap Candy Needed From Lower Level Candy to Cap
Regular Candy Level 1+ 50 AVs 426 N/A
L Candy Level 30+ 100 AVs 218 168
XL Candy Level 60+ 200 AVs 545 445

There is another option, as well. Each Pokémon evolution line and single Pokémon have their own special Candy, such as Caterpie Candy, Meltan Candy and so on. This Candy will give +1 boost to each stat, regardless of level, for each Candy, meaning you’d only need 200 Pidgey Candy to boost every stat to maximum regardless of the level.

So how do you get all this wonderful Candy? The simplest answer is to catch Pokémon. As you catch more and more Pokémon, you’ll get better rewards and most of those rewards are – you guessed it – Candy.

Each Pokémon will give specific Candy, such as Metapod giving Tough Candy, as well as the species-specific Candy. If you get into a Catch Combo of 100 on the particular species, you’re likely to have enough Candy to max the Pokémon out. However, for some Pokémon – like Legendary and Mythical Pokémon – you can’t do this. So, in order to get their species Candy, you should play with the Pokémon in your Poké Ball Plus as this is the best way to get the species specific Candy.

If you just wish to get the specific Candy for a specific stat, there are a few good spawn points and Pokémon to focus on catching to help build up your reserve:

  • Courage Candy (Sp. Def) – Tentacool in Route 20
  • Health Candy (HP) – Caterpie in Viridian Forest
  • Mighty Candy (Attack) – Mankey/Ekans in Route 3
  • Quick Candy (Speed) – Pidgey in Route 1
  • Smart Candy (Sp. Atk) – Oddish in Route 1 (Let’s Go, Pikachu!), Gastly in Pokémon Tower
  • Tough Candy (Defense) – Geodude in Mt. Moon/Rock Tunnel

AVs cannot be reset. You can only add to them, not remove, which can be problematic if you’re trying to go for specific Attack and/or Speed stats. Still, with the ability to max these out, battles are certainly going to take a different turn; just ask the fools who have faced off against our fearsome Pidgey.