How are EV points earned?
Every time your Pokemon earns experience points from battling, it earns EV points as well. Every opposing Pokemon has a certain number of EV points assigned to it. For example, defeating a Starly will net you a Speed EV point, while beating a Geodude will earn you an EV point in Defense. More powerful Pokemon will give you even more points and sometimes a combination of points! Taking down a powerfulTogekiss (yes, we still love this Pokemon) will earn you two EV points in Special Attack and one EV point in Special Defense.
Above: A Charizard with Flamethrower needs Special Attack EVs
How can I use EV training to my advantage?
A-ha! This is where the whole crazy system gets even more interesting and complicated. Simply maxing out stats through EV training is not enough. You need to consider your Pokemon's base stats and attacks for it to really matter. Here are two different Pokemon that present two very different types of EV training situations.
First, let's take our Weavile from last week's issue. Weavile is all about Speed and Attack. Therefore you'll want to max out those stats to take full advantage of it. Its other stats are pretty poor, so it doesn't make sense to EV train for Weavile's Special Attack and Defense, just to change them from poor to mediocre. To make Weavile the best it can be, you'll want to pick on lots of Gyarados (two Attack EVs) and Pikachus (two Speed EVs).