How to increase your Pokémon BDSP friendship levels

Get cooking some Pokémon BDSP poffins, snag a soothe bell, and keep an eye on the friendship tracker - it’s time to raise your Pokémon BDSP friendship

Playable character interacting with her BDSP Pokémon

A happy Pokémon makes a happy trainer, and the best way to keep your critters full of love is to raise your Pokémon BDSP friendship levels. Being best buddies with your little companions in Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl has more benefits than the sheer joy of seeing their content little faces though – a higher friendship level can increase stats, performance in battle, and even help some Pokémon evolve.

If you’re wondering how to increase your Pokémon BDSP friendship levels, you’re in the right place. In this guide, we’ll show you all the ways you can earn the hearts of sweet pocket monsters, from soothe bells to poffins. We’ve also included a list of all the things that can decrease your friendship, so you know what to avoid, as well as some pointers on how to get the Pokémon BDSP friendship tracker.

While you’re here on your Pokémission, be sure to check out our Pokémon BDSP Underground, Pokémon BDSP Ditto, Pokémon BDSP Drifloon, and Pokémon BDSP exclusives list for more. We also have a list of Brilliant Diamond mystery gift codes & Shining Pearl mystery gift codes, with some great freebies up for grabs.

How do I build Pokémon friendship in BDSP?

There are several ways to raise your Pokémon BDSP friendship, and they mostly revolve around spending time with your little pals, and showing them some good, old fashioned TLC. Here are some tips on how to build Pokémon friendship in BDSP.

Pokémon in bdsp dancing with hearts above their heads

Give them a soothe bell

The soothe bell is a super useful piece of kit if you’re trying to raise your friendship level with a Pokémon. When a critter holds the soothe bell, its friendship growth rate is doubled, meaning when you do any of the following activities in our list, you’ll reap double the benefits.

To get your hands on the soothe bell, you simply have to head to the Pokémon Mansion on Route 212. As you enter, take a left and go through the second door to find a maid who will give you the bell after a brief chat about catching Pokémon in the garden.

HAVE THE POKÉMON FIRST IN YOUR PARTY

Everyone likes to be put first every now and then, and for Pokémon, it’s no different. Give them a little bit of the spotlight, by putting the Pokémon you want to befriend in the top slot. They’ll appreciate it, we promise.

Pokémon in BDSP following a player along the beach

Take your Pokémon for walks

Make sure your Pokémon is getting enough exercise, and spending a little extra time with you, by having them explore the land by your side. Check out our guide on how to get your BDSP Pokémon to follow you if you want to get in some quality time, and earn both berries and friendship points.

Feed your Pokémon delicious berries

Tasty, nutritional treats are bound to make your Pokémon happy, and luckily, some of the berries you get by taking them on walks can also increase their friendship level. However, these berries also have a side effect that decreases the effort values in a certain stat, so be mindful when using them.

Here are the berries that can increase friendship, along with their side effects.

Berry Effect
Pomeg Berry Lowers the Pokémon’s base HP
Kelpsy Berry Lowers the Pokémon’s base attack
Qualot Berry Lowers the Pokémon’s base defence
Hondew Berry Lowers the Pokémon’s base special attack
Grepa Berry Lowers the Pokémon’s special defence
Tamato Berry Lowers the Pokémon’s base speed

Get to cooking those sweet Pokémon BDSP Poffins

Pop the right poffin in a Poké’s mouth, and they’ll be in paradise! To cook poffins in Pokémon BDSP, you need to go to the Pokémon fan club in Hearthome city first. Talk to the NPC to get your hands on a poffin case. After that, head to the Poffin House beside the Poké Mart, or go to the Poffin Cooking Station inside Amity Square and talk to the lady.

Choose up to four berries to make your poffin, then get cooking. You need to stir the batter slowly at first, then carefully pick up the speed as the colour changes. Picking a variety of berries, preferably with strong but similar flavours increases your chances of getting higher quality poffins.

Poffins not only raise your friendship level with your chosen Pokémon, but can also increase their conditions, like beauty, cleverness, coolness, and more.

Pokémon BDSP battle, with a character summoning their Pokémon

Be victorious in battles

It feels good to win, right? Especially alongside your best friends. Well, your pocket monsters think so too. Winning battles with your favourite Pokémon on your team is sure to make them feel proud, and will also raise their friendship level with you too.

Give them massages

Who doesn’t want a nice massage after a tough day battling out in the wild? If you want to raise your friendship level with a certain Pokémon, it’s a good idea to pamper them every now and then, and taking them to get a massage is the perfect thing. Through most of the game, you have to talk to the massage girl in Veilstone City, near the Gym. In the post-game, you can also visit the spa in Ribbon Syndicate. A massage at the spa will give you more friendship points, but you’ll need to obtain ten ribbons before you can use it. You can only have one Pokémon massaged once a day, so choose wisely.

Dose them up with Vitamins

Health and happiness are pretty synonymous, so it makes sense that giving your Pokémon some feel-good vitamins will raise your friendship with them. You can buy vitamins from the Veilstone department store, or exchange battle points for them at the battle tower. Vitamins not only give a small raise to your friendship levels, but also raise their base stats. However, this can be an expensive way to raise your friendship levels, so it’s only really worthwhile if you’ve got the Pokébux to spare.

Here’s a list of all the available vitamins, and what stat improvements they provide. Vitamins usually cost around 9,800-10,000 Pokébux, or ten battle points each.

Vitamin Effect
HP up Raises the Pokémon’s base HP
Protein Raises the Pokémon’s base attack 
Iron Raises the Pokémon’s base defence
Calcium Raises the Pokémon’s base special attack
Zinc Raises the Pokémon’s base special defence
Carbos Raises the Pokémon’s base speed
PP up Raises the maximum PP of a single move that has been learned by the target Pokémon

Two characters startled by BDSP bird Pokémon

What lowers Pokémon BDSP friendship?

If you want to make sure you don’t lose any of these hard-earned friendship points, be sure to avoid doing any of the following.

  • Allowing the Pokémon to faint in battle
  • Feeding your Pokémon bitter items
  • Keeping your Pokémon locked up in the Pokémon Center
  • Trading the Pokémon (trading a Pokémon resets their friendship points entirely)

Pokémon BDSP friendship checker screen

How do I use the Pokémon BDSP friendship checker?

While checking your friendship level with your Pokémon isn’t quite as easy as taking a peek at their stats, there’s a way you can get a general idea for how they feel about you. If you head to Eterna City and talk to the man in the Pokémon Center, he’ll give you access to the Pokétech app. This app will bring up a green screen with sprites of all the members of your party, in a style reminiscent of the older games. Tapping the Pokémon will show you their approximate happiness and friendship through little hearts – the more hearts, the more love, of course.

And that’s it for our Pokémon BDSP friendship guide – we hope you’ve made some new pals! If you’ve already maxed out your Pokélove, head over to our list of the best Switch adventure games to find something new. If you happen to be playing Legends: Arceus, take a look at our Pokémon Legends: Arceus base campsPokémon Legends: Arceus starters, and Pokémon Legends: Arceus new Pokémon guides.

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