I've noticed today that I've had a lot of balls start spinning to the side (like a curveball would) after I throw them straight at the Pokemon. I'm not spinning the ball beforehand to get the curveball bonus, and it doesn't appear to happen if I throw the ball at an angle to compensate. It also seems to happen more if I'm throwing the ball further.

Is there a known mechanic or any theories concerning this?

Update: I spent some more time trying this out and talked to some co-workers who play the game. We also noticed that some balls thrown intentionally as curveballs will sometimes spin the opposite direction or go straight in the direction that they were thrown.

  • 1
    From what I've experienced, Curveballs are only activated when spinning the pokeball until it sparkles.
    – Sean
    Jul 13, 2016 at 14:16
  • Are you sure it was a curveball bonus and not another one? There are four I know of (curveball, nice, great & excellent throw).
    – dly
    Jul 13, 2016 at 14:20
  • I think it might be buggy. The very first pokeball that I threw got a curveball bonus; I didn't even know about the mechanic, so I definitely didn't do anything weird to "spin it up," I just threw the ball. Jul 13, 2016 at 14:21
  • @dly I'm not talking about the bonus, I'm talking about the ball curving to the side
    – jimrm
    Jul 13, 2016 at 14:22
  • 1
    @JimMouer this is not a problem unique to yourself, I and at least 2 others I know have experienced this also.
    – Theyna
    Jul 13, 2016 at 20:59

4 Answers 4


When this happened to me, I took it as "accuracy decreases as distance increases". More difficult to catch Pokemon will stay back or move back if precautions aren't taken by the player (berries and better Pokeballs).

Anecdotally though, I think curving the ball purposely allows you to throw further because you can initially account for the curve and aim according.

  • This makes sense to me, but I haven't seen it curve if I've thrown it at an angle without spinning it. I'm not throwing out the possibility that I just haven't seen it, so I'm gonna try to test it a little more.
    – jimrm
    Jul 13, 2016 at 14:21
  • @JimMouer, that could very well be the case. I haven't done much non-curve balls since I found out about curve balls. This game is also very new, so we might see some mechanics changes in the following updates.
    – Ekmod
    Jul 13, 2016 at 14:24

I'm not exactly sure what causes it, but it usually happens on harder to catch pokemon, especially if I start using berries and greatballs. However, I've had it happen with lower CP pokemon and using normal pokeballs, so it could easily be coincidence.

I'll throw the ball straight, and it won't be spinning before hand, however as soon as I throw it, it starts to sparkle and veer off as if I had thrown a curveball. I once had it happen the other way around where I spun it until it shook and all that and it threw it straight anyways, so my guess is just that the curveballs are finicky.

Not necessarily the greatest answer, sorry. From personal experience though it does tend to happen on the harder to catch after using a razz berry, but since that was just my own experiences, take that with a grain of salt.

Edit: And just going to mention since I forgot, I hold my phone and swipe with my index, never been able to do it one handed. :P I have an LG G4 with a thick case so usually I don't have to worry about my fingers touching the edges of the screen.


I've had this happen to me far too many times. Typically I notice it when I'm trying to play with my thumb while holding the phone and releasing my hold tends to swing the ball off center. Although after getting frustrated from that I try to force curve it or start my throw from the middle of the screen which helps it stay straight.

The reason for this could be that hitting "far away" targets is meant to be harder so they are making it more difficult, or simply a bug or error in the game reading how you're throwing it.


This happens to me constantly. I just run away and re enter and it is fixed. No harm done. Unless you used razz berry.

  • I did that this evening while trying to catch a Poliwhirl and still had the same problems
    – jimrm
    Jul 14, 2016 at 0:41

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .