Ah, nidoran. A staple Pokémon of many Gen 1 and 2 teams, these little purple, and blue rascals have been a staple of the franchise since its very inception back in 1996. They’re so old. They’re old enough to drink in a bar now!
Joking aside, these two Pokémon have always been contenders for final team make-ups, both for confronting late and and-game challenges that the Pokémon series has provided and even for competitive teams in their final forms, Nidoking and Nidoqueen.
That is, of course, if you can evolve them in the first place. Otherwise, you’re just left with two socially acceptable poison equivalents of rattata.
So, you’ll probably want to know what level these Pokémon evolve at and from their second forms into their much-coveted final evolutions.
Well, don’t worry because we have you covered!
Not only will we show when and how you can evolve your nidoran, but also when it is best to do so, as well as some starts that will come in handy when training these Pokémon in your squad!
What Level Does Nidoran Evolve At?
So, before we get any further into this guide, we should probably answer the main question we asked at the beginning: When exactly can nidoran evolve?
In short, both nidoran evolutions evolve at level 16, turning into the much more powerful nidorino and nidorina.
These next forms come with a much-needed boost in your pocket monster’s stats, and that is where we start to see the diverging designs, abilities, stat blocks and move sets come into play.
What Level Does Nidorina/Nidorino Evolve At?
So, you finally have your nidorino or nidorina, and will likely make great use of that extra buff in power. Congratulations!
These middle-stage evolutions will make quick work of many early and mid-stage encounters in your game and even have enough versatility to help take you well into the middle to late gyms battle in Pokémon Red or Blue in gen 1 or Gold and Silver in gen 2.
However, by the time you are creeping up to the final two or three gym battles, and especially when you are approaching the elite 4 and champions, you’ll probably find that your nidorino and nidorina are no longer cutting it, no longer doing big enough numbers to be all that useful, and can end up feeling like they are just taking up slots on your team.
(A double trouble problem if you’re playing a Nuzlocke run of your game!) So, when exactly do these stages evolve into Nidoking and Nidoqueen?
Evolution By Stone
Well, that’s the trick, unfortunately. These two Pokémon cannot evolve simply by leveling them up but require a moonstone to evolve into their final stages.
This is doubly difficult if you have already used any moonstones you have found so far on one of the other evolution requiring these stones, particularly Pokémon like Clefairy and Jigglypuff.
Fortunately, at least in the case of Pokémon Red, Blue, Green, and Yellow in Gen 1, there are enough moonstones that can be found in the game to evolve each evolution line that needs them once, with the following being the laces where you can find these items:
- One on Route 2
- One in Mt. Moon
- One in the Team Rocket hideout in Celadon City
- One in Pokémon Mansion on Cinnabar Island.
So if you play your cards (or Pokémon, at least) right, you can still end up with one final evolution of each line that needs a moonstone by the end of the game.
When Should You Evolve Your Nidoran?
However, just as important in later games as the question of how you evolve your nidoran is the question of when.
If you have been playing Pokémon for a while, you may have noticed the speed at which certain pokemon will learn moves and how this often slows after evolution occurs.
This is part of the balancing mechanics that Pokémon uses to incentivize leveling up weaker pokemon and get people to stages where evolution can happen.
Earlier Moves For Nidoran
However, this also means there are cases in pokemon where the first or second evolutions can learn moves at a lower level than their evolved counterparts or even moves that are otherwise unavailable to the later stages.
For example, both nidorans can learn the move Earth Power at a much earlier level than nidorino or nidorina can, with it the starter forms learning these moves at 55 instead of at 71 for their second forms.
Considering that Earth power is a slightly weaker but naturally learned Earthquake, that’s a pretty tempting offer.
Add to that the fact that they also learn unique moves at earlier levels (crunch for nidoran♀ and poison jab for nidoran♂), and you may want to delay evolving these guys if possible.
Final Stage, Final Moves
What’s more, Nidoking and Nidoqueen no longer learn moves by leveling up once they have evolved, meaning that unless you’re willing to bust out the TMs or go to a move tutor or rememberer, then the moves that your Pokémon has on evolving will be their move set for the rest of the game.
Why Are Nidoran(♂) & Nidoran(♀) Different Evolutionary Lines?
Considering that many pokemon, such as Shinx and Pikachu, have different appearances for different sexes, why are the nidorans completely different evolutionary lines?
Well, this comes down to a limitation of hardware when these two were created. Sexual dimorphism in Pokémon was only a feature in gen 4 and onwards, so the nidorans having different designs meant that they also had to be coded and classified as two different lines of evolution.
And at this point, they are such staples. Why change that?
So, as you can see, nidoran, whilst perhaps requiring a little more searching, can become invaluable members of your team once they are evolved.
And even if you don’t, look at them! They are adorable! How could you not love these two little guys?