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Pokémon Scarlet & Violet Finizen Evolution Guide

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Pokémon Scarlet and Violet‘s Spain-inspired Paldea region has introduced fans to a ton of new Pokémon. While the game has its fair share of glitches and performance issues, those haven’t distracted most players from appreciating how much Game Freak has experimented with the series’ traditional formula. One of the new Pokémon that players can find throughout the Paldea region has been a long-anticipated addition, but it may just have one of the wildest mechanics out there.


It took 26 years and over 150 Water types, but Pokémon Scarlet and Violet has finally introduced a dolphin Pokémon. Finizen is a Water-type Pokémon that inhabits the waters surrounding the Paldea region. Visually, it might not be as impressive as some other newcomers, but its evolution and exclusive ability make Finizen an incredibly unique Pokémon that’s unlike anything else so far.

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Why You Should Catch Finizen

The Pokemon Finizen as it appears in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet

Being a straight Water-type, Finizen can be found exactly where one might expect to catch a dolphin Pokémon. Once players gain the ability to surf across Paldea’s oceans, they can seek out Finizen and attempt to catch it. As the first part in a two-stage evolution tree, Finizen can hold its own fairly well before evolving. It’s got a solid move list, including some Water-type stand-outs like Aqua Jet and Dive. Still, evolving Finizen will give players access to a much more impressive selection of moves.

Chances are, players will actually be able to evolve their Finizen soon after they catch one. Most Pokémon in the ocean are going to be somewhere around level 30, as players will have had to progress through The Path of Legends questline to unlock the ability to Surf. Finizen can evolve once it reaches level 38, though triggering this evolution is a bit more complicated than that and requires utilizing one of Pokémon Scarlet and Violet‘s new features.

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How to Evolve Finizen Into Palafin

The Pokemon Palafin in its Hero Form in battle.

Evolving a Finizen into Palafin requires leveling up Finizen while connected to a Union Circle. This is a new feature in Scarlet and Violet that allows up to four players to connect with each other online and explore the Paldea region together. It’s as close to true co-op as a main series Pokémon game has gotten, though players will need a Nintendo Switch Online subscription to use it. Once Finizen is level 38, players will just need to level it up again while in a Union Circle to evolve it.

At first glance, Palafin looks almost identical to Finizen. Its size, color, and appearance stay exactly the same, with the only initial exception being a pink heart on the Pokémon’s chest. However, Palafin’s new ability, Zero to Hero, makes it unique. This ability allows Palafin to transform from its regular Zero Form into the bigger and stronger Hero Form. To trigger this transformation, players will need to switch Palafin out during battle either manually or by using a move like Baton Pass.

Upon switching out, Palafin will undergo an extensive change in appearance. It will be standing upright on its fins in a superhero-like stance, with the game stating that it underwent a “heroic transformation.” Palafin’s Hero Form boosts its Attack and Special Attack stats, along with smaller increases to most other stats. Players will only need to activate Zero to Hero once during battle, as Palafin will stay in its Hero Form until the end of a battle.

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