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Priority

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Any messages that have priority over moves - basically, anything that was overlooked; Quick Claw's and Custap Berry messages' priority in Generation IV

Priority refers to the order in which Trainers' commands are followed during a battle. Under normal circumstances, the priority of a move used in a battle is determined by the Speed statistic of the Pokémon using the move. However, a move may have a different priority value, which can cause that move to always go before or after ordinary moves. Using items and switching Pokémon will almost always precede a Pokémon's move.

Each move and certain actions have a hidden priority value in the game data, ranging from +8 to -8. Most moves are ordinary, and have 0 priority. Moves that always go before ordinary priority moves have increased priority and priority values greater than zero. Examples include moves such as Quick Attack and Extreme Speed. Moves that always go after ordinary priority moves have decreased priority and priority values less than zero. Examples of decreased priority moves are Counter and Roar. Moves with effects that last an entire turn, such as Protect or Magic Coat, have much higher priority to ensure that the move is used at the start of the turn.

Moves that have the same priority are said to be in the same priority bracket. When two moves of equal priority, such as when both Aqua Jet and Bullet Punch are used in the same turn, the Pokémon with the higher Speed will act first.

Pokémon with the Ability Prankster or Gale Wings increase the priority of their status moves or Flying-type moves by 1, respectively.

Move priority is not changed by the effects of Trick Room, which only reverses the order of moves within a priority bracket. Increased priority moves still go first, and decreased priority moves still go last.

When a Pokémon uses a move, some held items and Abilities cause it to move either first or last in its priority bracket, ignoring even Trick Room. The items Full Incense and Lagging Tail and the Ability Stall cause the affected Pokémon to go last in its priority bracket, while the items Quick Claw and Custap Berry cause the user to go first in its priority bracket.

In the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series, priority moves attack the target up to 2 tiles away, due to speed not determining the attacking order. In Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Sky, wild Pokémon may attempt to attack the player or fellow teammate while inside a wall, but only if the foe is 2 tiles away.

Priority moves

Generation VI

Priority Moves
+8 Quick Claw/Custap Berry/O-Power trigger message
+7 Pursuit*
+6 Switching out, rotating, using items, escaping, charging of Focus Punch, Mega Evolution*
+5 Helping Hand
+4 Detect, Magic Coat, Protect, Spiky Shield, Snatch
+3 Endure, Fake Out, King's Shield, Quick Guard, Wide Guard, Crafty Shield
+2 Extreme Speed, Feint, Follow Me, Rage Powder
+1 Ally Switch, Aqua Jet, Baby-Doll Eyes, Bide, Bullet Punch, Ice Shard, Ion Deluge, Mach Punch,
Powder, Quick Attack, Shadow Sneak, Sucker Punch, Vacuum Wave, Water Shuriken
0 All other moves, shifting
-1 Vital Throw
-2 None
-3 Focus Punch
-4 Avalanche, Revenge
-5 Counter, Mirror Coat
-6 Circle Throw, Dragon Tail, Roar, Whirlwind
-7 Trick Room
-8 None

Generation V

Priority Moves
+8 Quick Claw/Custap Berry trigger message
+7 Pursuit*
+6 Switching out, rotating, using items, escaping, charging of Focus Punch
+5 Helping Hand
+4 Detect, Magic Coat, Protect, Snatch
+3 Endure, Fake Out, Follow Me, Quick Guard, Rage Powder, Wide Guard
+2 ExtremeSpeed, Feint
+1 Ally Switch, Aqua Jet, Bide, Bullet Punch, Ice Shard, Mach Punch,
Quick Attack, Shadow Sneak, Sucker Punch, Vacuum Wave
0 All other moves, shifting
-1 Vital Throw
-2 None
-3 Focus Punch
-4 Avalanche, Revenge
-5 Counter, Mirror Coat
-6 Circle Throw, Dragon Tail, Roar, Whirlwind
-7 Magic Room, Trick Room, Wonder Room, fleeing
-8 None

Generation IV

Priority Moves
+7 Pursuit*
+6 Switching out, using items, escaping, charging of Focus Punch
+5 Helping Hand
+4 Magic Coat, Snatch
+3 Detect, Endure, Follow Me, Protect,
+2 Feint
+1 Aqua Jet, Bide, Bullet Punch, ExtremeSpeed, Fake Out, Ice Shard, Mach Punch,
Quick Attack, Shadow Sneak, Sucker Punch, Vacuum Wave
0 All other moves, fleeing
-1 Vital Throw
-2 None
-3 Focus Punch
-4 Avalanche, Revenge
-5 Counter, Mirror Coat
-6 Roar, Whirlwind
-7 Trick Room

Generation III

Priority Moves
+8 Charging of Focus Punch
+7 Pursuit*
+6 Switching out, using items, escaping
+5 Helping Hand
+4 Magic Coat, Snatch
+3 Detect, Endure, Follow Me, Protect
+2 None
+1 ExtremeSpeed, Fake Out, Mach Punch, Quick Attack
0 All other moves, fleeing
-1 Vital Throw
-2 None
-3 Focus Punch
-4 None
-5 Counter, Mirror Coat, Roar, Whirlwind
-6 None
-7 None
-8 None

Generation II

Priority Moves
+7 Pursuit*
+6 Switching out, using items, escaping
+5 None
+4 None
+3 Detect, Endure, Protect
+2 None
+1 ExtremeSpeed, Mach Punch, Quick Attack
0 All other moves
-1 Roar, Whirlwind
-2 None
-3 None
-4 None
-5 Counter, Mirror Coat
-6 None
-7 Fleeing

Generation I

Priority Moves
+6 Switching out, using items, escaping
+5 None
+4 None
+3 None
+2 None
+1 Quick Attack
0 All other moves
-1 None
-2 None
-3 None
-4 None
-5 Counter
-6 None

Trivia

  • Since Focus Punch has a higher priority than Avalanche, Revenge, Dragon Tail, Circle Throw, and Counter, they are unable to break the focus of a Pokémon using Focus Punch. They are therefore the only five attacks that can strike a Pokémon in the same turn as it successfully uses Focus Punch.
  • Hitmontop can learn the most priority moves of all Pokémon, with 14 increased priority moves and 2 decreased priority moves.
  • Since charging Focus Punch had a higher priority than switching in Generation III, in a Double Battle, if the player selected Focus Punch then cancelled the selection, then switched that Pokémon out, it would still begin charging Focus Punch before switching. Its high priority also gave it the odd effect of occurring before the opponent used their items or Pokémon were switched out.
  • All moves that have ever had -7 priority have the word "room" in their names.


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