Iron Thorns is the Paradox version of the beloved Generation II Pokemon, Tyranitar. Many people going into their first playthroughs (or even a replay) of Pokemon Scarlet and Violet may be wondering where to catch Iron Thorns as well as if it’s worth using over Tyranitar in any capacity. So here are a few things you need to know if you are planning on using Iron Thorns or even if you just want to add the Paradox Pokemon to your collection.
What is a Paradox Pokemon?
Paradox Pokemon are a new class of Pokemon introduced in Pokemon Scarlet and Violet and each game features different ones. Pokemon Scarlet focuses on prehistoric versions of current Pokemon that we’ve all come to love whereas Pokemon Violet instead focuses on futuristic versions of well-known Pokemon. One of these is, of course, the fan favorite Tyranitar originally introduced in Generation II with the release of Pokemon Gold and Silver.
Iron Thorns’ Typing and Stats (Compared to Tyranitar)
First off, let’s talk about its typing and stats. Iron Thorns is a Rock/Electric type Pokemon, a type combination unique to Iron Thorns alone. And its stat total is enough to rival even some legendaries such as Suicune.
Iron Thorns is a bulky, physical attacking Pokemon and although it is quite slow, its moves pack quite the punch, as one would expect from a Paradox Tyranitar.
However, it is important to note that these stats are pretty low in comparison to Tyranitar itself, as Tyranitar carries a whopping stat total of 600!
Now, we can see that both versions of the Pokemon share the same HP, Attack, and Defense stats, which are the main focus of both Pokemon. However, Tyranitar boasts higher numbers in its Sp. Attack and Defense with an even lower number in speed. So, really, neither one has any clear advantage. They are both slow and share the same stat totals for their three most important stats. So you can rest assured that whichever versions of these Pokemon you choose to use, they will perform just fine. But, come on, who wouldn’t want to utilize the cool-looking Iron Tyranitar that is Iron Thorns?
Where to Catch Iron Thorns
Now that we’ve gotten the numbers out of the way, let’s talk about where to find Iron Thorns. First off, though, it is important to note that Iron Thorns is only available in Pokemon Violet. And on top of that, there are ways for Pokemon Scarlet players to get their hands on Iron Thorns as well, such as through trading with a friend or through the use of online trading codes set up by the community that are designed to trade version exclusive Pokemon.
The Iron Thorns location is a bit difficult to get to only because you must first complete all three of the main story quest lines (Starfall Street, Victory Road, and the Path of Legends) before you can get there. That means you must defeat all gym leaders and the Elite Four as well as all of the Titan Pokemon and Team Star Leaders.
So, unfortunately, that means that Pokemon Violet players will not be able to use Iron Thorns for their first in-game playthrough. But, of course, the option is always open for those who wish to trade one over to a new save file and completely roll over the competition with Iron Thorns in their party from the beginning of the game.
But once you complete all of that, finding Iron Thorns isn’t all that difficult. The Paradox Tyranitar can be found within the Great Crater of Paldea, in Area Zero. And while it is a rare spawn, we have a couple of really simple steps you can take to ensure you find one!
First off, the best location to find Iron Thorns is right outside of Research Station #1, on the slope to the right.
If you don’t see one immediately, don’t fret! As we said, Iron Thorns is quite a rare spawn, but there are a couple of strategies you can employ to find one within a few minutes. First off, you can try going in and out of the area to force more spawns and keep your eye out for the Paradox Tyranitar… OR you can try a different method entirely.
How to Catch Iron Thorns
One of the best methods for finding any kind of rare Pokemon in Scarlet and Violet is to make a sandwich! If you make a sandwich that boosts the chances of finding either Rock or Electric type Pokemon, you will increase your odds of having Iron Thorns appear for you. A couple sandwich recipes you can try are as follows:
Two of these Sandwich recipes can be purchased at stores and one you can make yourself using the Picnic feature. Either way, these sandwiches will greatly increase your odds of finding Iron Thorns in the above location.
And, of course, once you do manage to find Iron Thorns, you still have to actually be able to catch it! To do so, we recommend using battle strategies like the move False Swipe. False Swipe is a move that deals damage and, if it would knock the Pokemon out, instead leaves it at 1 HP, ensuring that you don’t accidentally knock it out and have to find one all over again!
You can get the TM for False Swipe from Professor Jacq after you register 30 different Pokemon in your Pokedex, which can be done within a few hours of starting the game. Just go see him in his classroom at the Academy and he’ll check your Pokedex and give you the TM once you are able to do so.
On top of this, we also recommend using some kind of status condition, such as sleep or paralysis, to weaken Iron Thorns even further and leaving it even more vulnerable to capture.
How to Find Shiny Iron Thorns
And if you’d like an even better challenge, you can hunt for Shiny Iron Thorns! Just look at it! Who wouldn’t want one?
But don’t think it’s going to be easy… With Iron Thorns already being a rare spawn, finding a Shiny one is no easy task. But we have a few tips that will help you capture one so you can show it off to all your friends.
First off, we do of course recommend that you have the Shiny Charm before attempting to hunt for a Shiny Iron Thorns. Having the Shiny Charm increases your odds of finding a shiny Pokemon from 1 in 4096 to a much easier 1 in 1365. That is three times easier! However, you must complete the region’s Pokedex (see all 400 Pokemon in the Paldea dex) and report to Professor Jacq, the biology teacher at Naranja/Uva Academy. He will then award you with the Shiny Charm.
However, if you’re insistent on finding a Shiny Iron Thorns before that and wish to test your odds, you are more than free to do so! Just be prepared to sink many, many hours into the task.
The other tip that we recommend when it comes to finding Shiny Iron Thorns is to use a Shiny Encounter Sandwich. The recipe for which is as follows:
Even with BOTH of these methods combined, the task will still take you some time. But it is well worth it. And who knows? You may be the next person to catch the elusive Iron Tyranitar in all of its Shiny, silvery glory.