I read this comment earlier (quoted in case it's removed, emphasis mine) and If a Pokémon is shiny for someone, is it shiny for everyone in the same location?:

I also can confirm this: I just had a regular Magikarp on the map. Once the battle started it was yellow and had sparkles. So yeah, you need to invoke the battle. It wasn't shiny for another person, though

The same Pokémon was shiny for one person and not another. This surprises me, because Pokémon are otherwise the same for all: same IVs and same CP for people on the same level (this has been my experience, playing with my partner of the same level; however, this does not appear to be other people's experience)

What determines the shiny nature of a Pokémon? Is it determined for each player when it spawns, or when a player clicks the Pokémon? Does running and re-entering affect this (i.e. does running from a shiny and reclicking it keep its shininess)?

Answering the last question should be enough to answer the first two.

  • Pokemon are not the same CP for players at the same level. I've been the same level as a friend for a while and the Pokemon around us are pretty much never the same levels.
    – Batophobia
    Commented Mar 24, 2017 at 16:16
  • I mean EXACT Pokémon. If you are the same level, and both click the same Pokémon, to the best of my knowledge it's the same CP
    – Tas
    Commented Mar 24, 2017 at 19:35
  • That's what I'm talking about. We can stand next to each other and tap on the same Pokemon in the area and they will not be the same CP. Often they are several hundred CP apart.
    – Batophobia
    Commented Mar 24, 2017 at 20:04
  • Thanks guys! That's so odd, I play very frequently with someone of the same level, and someone of a different level, and 100% of the time the pokemon we of the same level encounter are the exact same CP. I've edited the question since that only appears to by my experience, not fact, although it does form one of the reasons the way shininess works surprised me
    – Tas
    Commented Mar 25, 2017 at 1:20
  • CP stays the same if you run away and then click again, so my guess is shininess does too. It'd be to exploitable otherwise.
    – Kat
    Commented Mar 25, 2017 at 22:27

1 Answer 1


Based on the experiment conducted in this thread, it's shown that the shininess of a Pokémon is determined serverside rather than clientside.

That is, the shininess of a Pokémon isn't determined once you click on it; it was already determined when it spawned. If this were not the case, it would be possible to constantly restart your app after encountering a Magikarp to try to have it appear as a shiny eventually. Conversely, restarting the app after encountering a shiny Magikarp would likely mean that that same Magikarp would no longer be shiny if you re-encountered it.

To prove this, the OP of the above thread encountered a shiny Magikarp then restarted their app. When they re-encountered it, it was still a Shiny.

I TESTED THIS THEORY AND DIDN'T WORK: I encountered a shiny magikarp and for the sake of research I risked it and reset my app. Encountered again and it was still shiny, sorry boys and girls. Here's my evolved karp :), good thing I "saved my candies". https://i.sstatic.net/z5PgS.jpg

Edit + Clarification for CS people: It's determined serverside, I made the assumption that it could be clientside based on the individuality, which is a valid guess, and I was wrong based on my reverse testing. I didn't think it was out of the question impossible for it to be serverside, just my initial reasoning as to the fact that it could've been clientside.

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