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Pokemon Go Ditto guide: How to catch a Ditto in Pokemon Go

Pokemon Go ditto
(Image credit: Niantic)

If you're trying to catch a Ditto in Pokemon Go, then good luck, as luck is your best friend here. With a 3% chance of finding one of the Ditto disguises in Pokemon go, or at least what fans think are the options, it's mainly a waiting game in Pokemon Go.

Obviously Ditto doesn't appear as Ditto, and you'll only know you've got one when a more or less random Pokemon transforms on capture. The general belief is that only a small group can be Ditto, with updated lists appearing each month based on anecdotal catches. However, some lists aren't updated, old lists get copied into new articles, and before long all you can say is that Ditto is definitely a Pokemon. Somewhere. 

However, you can make it easier to catch a Ditto in Pokemon Go by focusing on the larger list of of Ditto disguises, and following a few basic pointers to increase your odds. Although it does largely boil down to just catching as many Pokemon as you can, so good luck Ditto hunters. 

Current Pokemon Go Ditto disguises

Pokemon go Gastly

(Image credit: Niantic)

There's no official list of what Pokemon Ditto can be in Pokemon Go, because it supposedly can be anything. However, there's always an unofficial list, largely created from crowd sourced reports of catches that seems to change from month to month. 

A recent April Fools day event saw the following Pokemon appear more frequently in the wild, with the implication that they could be Ditto. The event only lasted for a few hours however, and it's unclear if their status as possible Ditto disguises remains. 

  • Ekans
  • Gastly
  • Natu
  • Surskit
  • Finneon
  • Dwebble
  • Swirlix
  • Lillipup

As for other Ditto disguises in Pokemon Go, there's nothing official, just fan made lists crowd sourced from catches. That has, in the past included these Pokemon in Pokemon Go:  

  • Weedle
  • Pidgey
  • Paras
  • Rattata
  • Zubat
  • Venonat
  • Mankey
  • Drowzee
  • Voltorb
  • Magikarp
  • Sentret
  • Hoothoot
  • Ledyba
  • Spinarak
  • Teddiursa
  • Remoraid
  • Yanma
  • Zigzagoon
  • Seedot
  • Hoppip
  • Whismur
  • Gulpin
  • Numel
  • Skitty
  • Bidoof
  • Stunky
  • Purrloin
  • Foongus
  • Taillow

So, while checking a list of current Ditto disguises as perceived by the community might increase your chances, the only way to be sure it so keep trying. The more 'mon you catch the more chance you'll finally get that Ditto. Some events have also awarded Ditto in the past as well, so that's always a possible opportunity in the future 

How to catch a Ditto

How to catch a Ditto in Pokemon Go

As we eluded to earlier, trainers won’t actually know if they’ve caught a Ditto until they’ve already done it. Trainers will need to successfully catch a Pokemon that Ditto can transform into and a catch screen will appear that shows the Pokemon revert back into Ditto. 

Ditto only reveals itself once this has been successful. Instead of the regular ‘Gotcha’ when you manage to snare your creature, an ‘Oh?’ will appear above the ball and Ditto will reveal its true happy smiling self. Voila. Mission accomplished.  

Additionally, Shiny Ditto is available to catch in the wild in Pokemon Go. If you encounter a Shiny Pokemon that Ditto can transform into that Pokemon is guaranteed to not be a Ditto. However, trainers can catch a Pokemon like Drowzee and it can reveal itself to be a Shiny Ditto.  

Pokemon Go Ditto tips

Catching a Ditto is all based on your luck but there are a few ways you can make sure you are maximising your Pokemon Go time. 

1. Use your nearby radar 

Always keep an eye out for the target Pokemon on your nearby list. While they are all relatively common Pokemon, it’s helpful to be able to see what’s where, especially as more and more Pokemon are added to the mix. 

2. Catch Ditto with lures and incense

An incense in Pokemon Go

Thanks to confirmation from The Silph Road (opens in new tab), you can catch a Ditto from both lures and incense. If you’re staying in the one spot but don’t want to miss out, pop on a lure and/or incense, target the list Pokemon and you might just find Ditto comes to you instead of the other way around. 

3. Dittos are the same for everyone

Unlike shiny Pokemon, which are entirely random and not shared by fellow players, Ditto can always be found inside a set Pokemon spawn. This means that if you are looking for a Ditto and a fellow player finds one, if you can get to that spot, you’ll get it too. If you are subscribed to a Pokemon Go Discord group, ask players to keep you updated in your area but be fast as they won’t stay around long. 

4. Crack a Lucky Egg

Cracking a lucky egg in Pokemon Go

This won’t help your odds of catching Ditto but if you are heading out on a Ditto hunt you’ll be earning stacks of XP as you check every Pokemon you encounter. Crack a Lucky Egg and you will double this XP for half an hour. The same goes for Star Pieces. It’s time to maximise the grind, people.

Hatching Ditto from eggs in Pokemon Go

You cannot hatch Ditto from an egg. It must be caught with a Poke Ball using the above method. 

Using Ditto in gyms and battles

Once you actually have Ditto, you’ll find it has an intriguing use in Pokemon gyms. Take it into battle and you’ll find that it transforms into its first opponent’s form and takes on that Pokemon’s move set, while keeping its own CP. Bear in mind though, it only changes form once for the first opposing Pokemon it encounters so you’ll be stuck with that one for the full gym battle. 

If you want to take Ditto into battle against another trainer, it will transform into the opponent’s first Pokemon and copy its moves, attack and defensive stats, and type. However, it will not keep the Pokemon’s HP stat, so Ditto won’t last in battle as long as trainers will want. 

General Pokemon Go Ditto information

Ditto is a Normal Pokemon. While you will get 3 candy for catching it as is standard, there is no evolved form. You can power it up though as with other Pokemon with a combination of candy and Stardust. If you want to walk with Ditto as your buddy, it will earn a candy for every 3km achieved.

Once you've got a Ditto, mission complete! Until it inevitably appears again as a Special Research task, at which point you can refresh your memory by revisiting this page.

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I'm currently a GamesRadar guide contributor with a specialty in everything Pokemon GO. If you've wanted to know the best way to take down a Rayquaza, there's a good chance you read one of my guides. I previously have written for IBT Media, Newsweek and Screen Rant. I'm a huge fighting game fan and everything Pokemon, but I've grown to love RPGs.

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