How to evolve Inkay into Malamar in Pokemon X and Y

The designers of the Pokemon X and Y Pokedex went a little wild when trying to find new ways to evolve Pokemon. While Pancham’s evolution into Pangoro is interesting, and Sylveon's evolution method is cute, neither holds a candle up to the insanity that is Inkay’s evolution into Malamar. Seriously, this is one you’d never, ever figure out on your own, especially if you’re used to the typical evolution methods in previous Pokemon games. Think you're just going to level it up or rub a rock on it? Think again. As we mentioned in our Pokemon X and Y review, the designers had a very outside-the-box approach to this new entry.

After level 30, Inkay has the ability to evolve, but in order to successfully complete it you need to turn your 3DS upside-down when it levels. Yes, seriously--flip it over and hold it the wrong way during a level and it’ll turn into Malamar. It makes sense after you know it, since Malamar looks like an upside-down Inkay, but, still--that's a pretty big departure from how typical evolutions work. Then again, we're in a post-Mega Evolution world, so nothing is off-limits.


  • Winston - February 9, 2014 12:15 p.m.

    Lvl. 27 Inkay: Lvl. 90 Delphox HP: 67 HP: 251 EXP: 277 EXP: 4,562
  • Doctalen - October 16, 2013 9:32 a.m.

    In looks it really like Inkay/Malamar by I'm severely disappointed that it can't learn surf and just about every pokemon learns a dark move and that with the exception of psychic types, fairies tend to be better than Malamar. Seriously though, Y U NO LEARN SURF SQUID!
  • shawksta - October 16, 2013 2:23 p.m.

    There exist Pokemon that tend to look like they should learn something or be something. Malamar and Electross both look like they should learn Surf and yet they don't. Meanwhile Pikachu/Raichu, Goddamn Rhydon and Heliolisk can learn Surf
  • J-Fid - October 16, 2013 9:25 a.m.

    This is great and all, but I haven't even found an Inkay, and I just beat the Elite 4 last night!
  • corey-grant - November 29, 2013 12:45 p.m.

    If you want to find an Inkay, go to the area around where you get the Ampharosite and head up and left (you might want to bring some max repels) and when you are as far left as you can go go down and there should be a average amount of a patch of grass. In that patch, if you take some time, you will find an Inkay.
  • J-Fid - November 29, 2013 9:28 p.m.

    I think I caught one the day after I posted that comment.
  • corey-grant - December 8, 2013 3 p.m.

    oh, oh well. I tried. Sorry for the unnecessary comment then.
  • J-Fid - December 8, 2013 5:38 p.m.

    It's not totally useless. Somebody else might find it useful somewhere down the road.
  • Xtapolapopotamus - October 16, 2013 8:11 a.m.

    I like that there's some creative new evolution methods in this game, but I really wish there was more explanation/hints as to how they work. The closest I'd think is Inkay would flip upside down when doing some attacks. I NEVER would have guessed this method! I got my Pancham to evolve simply because I happened to have an Inkay in my party, I wouldn't have thought it wouldn't evolve without him. Malamar is cool but I'm sad he's not a special attacker, since my party is heavy on physical guys.
  • ciociosan - October 31, 2013 1:01 a.m.

    So the explanation here is that in aquatic invertebrates shaped like inkay, like jellyfish, start out in a polyp form and then mature into their medusa form, which involves them basically flipping over, like inkay into malamar. Here's a diagram: (Even though inkay starts right side up and malamar is upside down, I still feel like this is what they were going for) As a biologist I thought this was a super cool evolution mechanism. But how they expected any of us to figure that out is beyond me..
  • shawksta - October 16, 2013 7:53 a.m.

    That's why I love Malamar's design, because he's essentially an upside down evolved inkay. I knew you had to turn the 3DS Upside down to evolve but I thought it would be a prompt when he does evolve, didn't expect it to be done by yourself during a level up, that's awesome.
  • Vonter - October 16, 2013 10:10 a.m.

    He looks like the octopus-parrot the Simpsons' Prof. Frink had.
  • shawksta - October 16, 2013 6:23 p.m.

    Not just that but Scooby Doo Mystetry Incorporated's Pericles, especially when he turns into a Squid Monster later on. Just so you know by the way, there ARE squids that exist that have beaks. Its not a cartoon thing.
  • ObliqueZombie - October 16, 2013 7:50 a.m.

    I love this, hahaha. Very creative!
  • GOD - October 16, 2013 1:26 a.m.

    ....I'm not sure what to think about this. Expect the next pokemon game to have pokemon fusion in some form. With one special pokemon essentially being the pocket monster equivalent of a megazord.
  • JarkayColt - October 16, 2013 4:37 a.m.

    To be fair, they've already done that with Black and White Kyurem, because Reshiram/Zekrom is fused with Kyurem until you seperate them again. Thankfully they haven't taken the idea any further than that...yet. In very, very loose terms, you may also consider Escavalier (and maybe Accelgor by extension) to be 'fusions'. But yeah, no Megazords for now, lawls.
  • g1rldraco7 - October 15, 2013 11:59 p.m.

    Weird it's like emptying a can of beans into a pot onto the stove. Gravity does most of the work though.
  • slimjim441 - October 15, 2013 10:46 p.m.

    There's a handful of these. This one is obviously the most unorthodox though. It took me forever to get my Pancham to evolve. He was level 42 when I learned that you need a dark type in your party for him to evolve.

Showing 1-18 of 18 comments

Join the Discussion
Add a comment (HTML tags are not allowed.)
Characters remaining: 5000