Evolution (進化 Shinka; Dub: Digivolution/Evolution) is the process in which Digimon undergo a radical reconfiguration of their body structure data and transform into a new, stronger species of Digimon. Most Digimon can evolve into a wide variety of Digimon, and what they evolve into can be influenced both by the environment they are exposed to and by their various inherent traits. There are many methods by which Digimon can evolve, with many different requirements.
Evolution is measured by a Digimon's Evolution Stage. Most Digimon species belong to one of six Evolution Stages, and when they evolve, it is typically to a Digimon of a higher Evolution Stage than their previous form.
As part of their life cycle, all Digimon undergo evolution in the wild over time, and they usually stay evolved. However, Digimon can also draw power from the energy, emotions, and/or willpower of humans to evolve much faster. Tamers and Chosen Children use their bonds with their partner Digimon, together with their Digivices (and sometimes, other items), to temporarily evolve their Digimon into more powerful forms.
All Digimon naturally consume ("load") data, including the data of other Digimon which they have defeated, to sustain themselves. When they have loaded large enough amounts of data, they may undergo evolution. What a Digimon evolves into is determined by numerous factors. The most common of these factors are:
|Field||Environmental influence||Prowess and innate abilities|
|Fields are categories that sort Digimon by biological traits that they have in common, like element and species, so a Digimon will usually evolve into a Digimon of the same Field as itself.||Digimon can evolve to adapt to the environment in which they live.||Some evolutions only become available to a Digimon if they are sufficiently skilled, talented, or strong.|
|Floramon can evolve into Kiwimon. Both belong to the Jungle Troopers Field.||Snow Goburimon and Hyougamon are subspecies of Goburimon and Orgemon that have evolved to adapt to extreme cold.||Only Commandramon who are skilled enough to pass the Selection-D test can evolve into Sealsdramon.|
|How it is raised||Intake of specific data||Modification|
|The quality of care and attention that a Digimon receives when it is being raised affects how it will evolve.||Exposure to, or consumption of, human data or programs can cause evolution into a Digimon based on that data.||Some evolutions come from a Digimon altering itself or being altered by an outside force, such as other Digimon, humans, or viruses.|
↙ ↓ ↘
|A Digimon will evolve into Numemon if care mistakes are made when raising it.||Pulsemon evolves into various Digimon using different sources of exercise data: Bulkmon from body composition monitors, Exermon from yoga lesson data, and Runnermon from a treadmill.||By mechanizing its body, Greymon evolves into Metal Greymon.|
These factors mean that any two Digimon who start off as the same species can evolve in completely different directions from each other depending on the life that they live. The diversity of evolution pathways is a survival strategy that allows Digimon to adapt and endure the harsh, survival-of-the-fittest environment of the Digital World. In Digimon Adventure, Gennai says that there is no "right" or "wrong" in evolution in and of itself.
There can be other factors involved in different stories. For example, in Digimon Savers: Another Mission, the influence of the Dark Area is altering the evolutionary trees of Digimon so that they are evolving into many different forms.
Evolving again gets harder and harder with each Evolution Stage that a Digimon reaches, because each new Stage requires more and more data than the last. There are fewer and fewer Digimon of each subsequent level, and the majority of Digimon in the wild do not evolve any further than the Adult level.
When a Digimon transforms into a Digimon of a lower Evolution Stage than their current form, the process is usually called devolution (退化 taika; this word can be alternatively translated as "degeneration" or "regression"; Dub: De-Digivolution/Degeneration). Devolution is most commonly seen in partner Digimon when their temporary evolved state ends, but is occasionally depicted as also occurring to independent Digimon.
Partner Digimon Evolution
It is common in Digimon media for Digimon to draw strength and energy from humans. For example, many early episodes of Digimon Savers tell stories about Digimon who have infiltrated the Real World and are feeding on the emotions of troubled people.
Humans who are partnered with Digimon and have a Digivice, like Tamers and Chosen Children, are able to use their energy to artificially invoke a temporary evolution of their partner Digimon to a higher Evolution Stage. These evolutions are generally short-lived and only last for one or two battles. After the battle, they will usually devolve back to the form that they regularly inhabit when their human partner is not evolving them (almost always of the Child level).
The ability of a human to evolve their partner Digimon is typically based on the bond that the two share, and on the emotional state and maturity of the human partner. When both their relationship and their mindsets are healthy, they are able to evolve, and as they improve, they become able to evolve into stronger and stronger Digimon. It is also common for the human partner to acquire and use items and other powers to facilitate their partner Digimon's evolution.
|In Digimon Adventure, Kido Jou's Ikkakumon can Super Evolve into Zudomon using Jou's Crest of Sincerity.||In Digimon Tamers, Matsuda Takato can use Matrix Evolution to fuse with his partner Digimon, Guilmon, and become Dukemon.||In Digimon Adventure V-Tamer 01, Yagami Taichi uses the Digimental to evolve Zeromaru (Ulforce V-dramon) into Ulforce V-dramon Future Mode.|
In Digimon anime productions, there are two traditions relating to evolution. One, the evolution of partner Digimon into their regular evolved forms is usually depicted with reusable stock footage that showcases the evolution process in a long and flashy way that is unique to that particular Digimon series. Two, a partner Digimon who is undergoing evolution will call out to announce that they are evolving. Sometimes, the human partner will also call out something for the process. Only a few partner Digimon do not do this at all: Wallace's Terriermon in the first Digimon Adventure 02 movie, and the two Pawn Chessmon who are partnered with Kurosaki Miki and Shirakawa Megumi in Digimon Savers.
Evolving by Combining
Another way to evolve is for two Digimon to combine together and create a single Digimon of greater power. The concept of evolving in this way was introduced in 1998 in the Digimon Pendulum series of virtual pets. There are several named methods of evolution that work by combining multiple Digimon: Jogress Evolution, fusion, DigiXros, and (for Appmon) AppGattai.
(ジョグレス進化 Jyoguresu shinka;
Dub: DNA Digivolution/Jogress Digivolution)
(合体 Gattai[N 1];
Dub: DNA Digivolution/Fusion/DigiFuse)
|Two Digimon combine together to evolve into a new, stronger Digimon who is typically of a higher Evolution stage than either of the constituent Digimon.||Two Digimon combine together to evolve into a new, stronger Digimon of the same Evolution Stage as at least one of the constituent Digimon.||
One lead Digimon temporarily combines with one or more other Digimon ("DigiXros Units") to create a composite Digimon, where the other Digimon form equipment, new attributes and/or new body parts for the lead Digimon.
|Two Adult Digimon, XV-mon and Stingmon, Jogress Evolve to become Paildramon, a Perfect Digimon.||Two Ultimate Digimon, War Greymon and Metal Garurumon, fuse to become Omegamon, a stronger Ultimate Digimon.||Two Digimon, Shoutmon and Ballistamon, DigiXros to become Shoutmon X2. Ballistamon forms a suit of armor for Shoutmon.|
(アプ合体 Apu gattai)
|Two Appmon combine together to evolve into a new Appmon of a higher Grade.|
|Two Standard Grade Appmon, Gatchmon and Navimon, AppGattai to become DoGatchmon, a Super Grade Appmon.|
Over the years, there has been conflicting information on what the difference between Jogress Evolution and fusion is, if any:
- A Monmon Memo!! column from 2018 distinguishes between Jogress Evolution and fusion based on whether or not the combined Digimon is of a higher Evolution Stage than the two constituent Digimon: if it is higher, it is Jogress Evolution. If the Stage does not change, it is fusion. (This definition is the basis for this Wikimon article.)
- A Digimon Profile issue from 2021 also distinguishes based on Evolution Stage effect, but it uses "Jogress" (without the "evolution" qualifier) as a generic term for all cases of Digimon fusing together. Under its definition, what Monmon Memo!! calls "fusion" (i.e. no change to Evolution Stage) is "Jogress", whereas cases where the Evolution Stage does increase are more specifically called "Jogress Evolution".
- It is common for this distinction to be ignored entirely and for the terms to be used interchangeably by different Digimon productions. For example, Omegamon is frequently referred to as the result of a Jogress Evolution, especially in video games. (However, in many of these instances, Omegamon is stated to be a "Super Ultimate" Digimon, which in those instances is considered to be a higher level than Ultimate, making the Jogress Evolution claim valid by the Monmon Memo!! and Digimon Profile definitions.)
- There is often no distinction at all in English media, where both cases are usually just called "DNA Digivolution". Exceptions include Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth (where some instances of the term "fusion" as they relate to Omegamon and Omegamon Zwart are, variously, left as just "fusion" in the Field Guide, and localized as "DigiFuse" in a cutscene where Shiramine Nokia's Omegamon is formed); and the English version of Digimon Profile (where "fusion" is the generic term and "DNA Digivolution" is the term for cases where Evolution Stage increases).
The word "Jogress" (sometimes spelled "Jogres") is a portmanteau of the English words "joint" and "progress", as in the two Digimon who undergo this evolution can be described as getting stronger (progressing) together (jointly). Normally, when two Digimon Jogress, their Digicores are totally fused together into a single Digicore, causing the two to be reborn as a single, new Digimon. If the Digicores fail to completely fuse, such as with Chaosmon, the Jogress is considered to be incomplete, and the resulting Digimon is extremely unstable and has a very brief lifespan.
Both Jogress Evolutions and fusions generally only involve two Digimon, but there are some Digimon who are formed by the combination of more than two other Digimon, such as Ultimate Chaosmon and Omegamon: Merciful Mode. Jogressing and fusing are often portrayed as giving the consciousnesses of the constituent Digimon equal control of the new form, unlike DigiXrossing, where there is one clear leader who is controlling the new form.
The act of a Tamer undoing a Jogress and splitting the combined Digimon back into its constituent Digimon is called Partition (パーティション Pātishon). Similarly, the act of splitting up a DigiXrossed Digimon back into its constituents is called Xros Open (クロス・オーペン Kurosuōpen).
Unlike Digimon combining, AppGattai is virtually the only way to become a stronger Appmon. An Appmon Chip can be used instead of an active Appmon. It is possible for an AppGattai to fail and result in a weak Appmon (Sukashimon for AppGattai between Standard Grade Appmon, and Damedamon between Super Grade Appmon).
Mode Change (モードチェンジ Mōdochenji) is an evolution-like ability that is available to certain Digimon species which have multiple forms, or "Modes". When a Digimon undergoes a Mode Change, they transform into another mode of that species. This usually does not change their Evolution Stage, but there are some Modes that do (e.g. Lucemon).
Mode Changes generally do one of three things:
|A direct power-up that gives the Digimon brand-new abilities or equipment, or greater power.||A change between equipment that they already have. The Digimon can make this change at will.||A change of stance or body plan. The Digimon can make this change at will.|
|When Metal Greymon Mode Changes into Metal Greymon: Alterous Mode, it acquires the weapon Alterous and several new attack techniques.||Using its Extend Transmitter, Justimon can Mode Change between three arms with different powers: the Accel Arm, the Blitz Arm, and the Critical Arm.||The bipedal Duftmon can Mode Change into the quadrupedal Duftmon: Leopard Mode.|
Armor Evolution (アーマー進化 Āmā shinka; Dub: Armor Digivolution) is an ancient pseudo-evolutionary process in which a Digimon uses the power of a Digimental to evolve into an Armor Digimon. Digimentals and Armor Evolution are a technology that was developed by ancient Digimon to compensate for their limited evolution options and limited likelihood of ever evolving, but the technology is now lost.
Armor Evolution is less of a strain on a Digimon than regular evolution. Different Digimon have different affinities with the Digimentals, and trying to force a Digimon to use a Digimental will trigger an adverse reaction in the Digimental's power and cause it to run wild. Good affinity between Digimental and Digimon will result in an Armor Digimon of greater power, sometimes even Ultimate-class power. The power of Armor Digimon can vary considerably, so some are categorized as belonging to an Evolution Stage of equivalent power for clarity.
Each Digimental is associated with an elemental type, so using a Digimental results in a Digimon that wields that element.
It is possible to evolve into Armor Digimon without using Digimentals.
|V-mon can evolve into many Armor Digimon depending on which Digimental it uses.|
| + |
|If it uses the Digimental of Courage, it becomes Fladramon, a fire-elemental Armor Digimon.||If it uses the Digimental of Miracles, it becomes Magnamon, a metal-elemental Armor Digimon.||If it uses the Digimental of Hope, it becomes Sagittarimon, a holy-elemental Armor Digimon.|
X-Antibody and Evolution
- Main article: X-Antibody
One side effect of the X-Antibody is its ability to cause special evolutions in Digimon. When the levels of X-Antibody present in a Digimon's body reach a second threshold, they extract latent data from the Digimon's Digicore and use that to evolve the Digimon into a new form that expresses that latent data.
|When the X-Antibody accesses and modifies a Digimon's Digicore, the Digimon evolves into a special X-Antibody variant of itself that expresses latent data that the X-Antibody has extracted from its Digicore.||The Death-X gives a Digimon a powerful survival instinct, which compels it to continues to exist after death as an Undead Type.|
|The X-Antibody causes Monzaemon to X-Evolve into Monzaemon (X-Antibody).||DORUmon can undergo Death-X-Evolution to become Death-X-DORUgamon, the Death-X counterpart of DORUgamon.|
Other Types of Evolution
Dub: Blast Digivolution)
(暗黒進化 Ankoku shinka;
Dub: Dark Digivolution)
|The Digimon temporarily evolves into a powerful form that they are at the time otherwise unable to access. Ultimates who Blast Evolve become other Ultimates.||
Due to a powerful negative or sinister influence, a Digimon evolves into a Digimon that is destructive and uncontrollable.
|When a Digimon dies, it transforms into another Digimon (usually an Undead or Ghost Type).|
|In the Pendulum X 3.0, a Tiger Vespamon can Blast Evolve into Magnamon (X-Antibody) when the device's XAI is orange.||Feelings of anger and hatred cause Lopmon to undergo a Dark Evolution to Wendimon.||When a Togemon dies due to unforeseen circumstances, it will supposedly undergo Death Evolution into Ponchomon.|
|A Digimon who possesses unusual powers evolves into an uncontrollable and extremely destructive Digimon due to some provocation.|
|In Digimon Adventure tri., fear for her own safety and/or the safety of Mochizuki Meiko triggers Meicoomon into mutating into Meicrackmon: Vicious Mode.|
Digimon Adventure original continuity
- Main article: Evolution/Anime#Digimon Adventure original continuity
In Digimon Adventure, Digimon Adventure 02, Digimon Adventure tri., and Digimon Adventure: Last Evolution Kizuna, the ability to evolve is mostly tied to both the strength of the bond between the Chosen Child and their Digimon, and to the maturity and psychological growth of the Chosen Children themselves.
- Main article: Evolution/Anime#Digimon Tamers
In Digimon Tamers, the source of all evolution is the Digi-Entelechy, or "light of evolution". The existence of the Digi-Entelechy is what enables Digimon to evolve.
- Main article: Evolution/Anime#Digimon Frontier
Digimon Frontier focuses on the use of the twenty Legendary Spirits to transform into Hybrid Digimon in a process called "Spirit Evolution". Both human Chosen Children and ordinary Digimon are capable of Spirit Evolution.
- Main article: Evolution/Anime#Digimon Savers
- Main article: Evolution/Anime#Digimon Xros Wars
The primary focus of Digimon Xros Wars is on its main gimmick of DigiXrossing, where humans use Xros Loaders to temporarily combine their Digimon allies. Meanwhile, evolution is described as a permanent growth into new forms that Digimon undergo as they age, which takes a very long time, but all of this time can be skipped over temporarily via Super Evolution.
- Main article: Evolution/Anime#Digimon Universe Appli Monsters
Digimon Universe Appli Monsters has its own version of Evolution Stages, called "Grades", but unlike other Digimon series, there is not quite any directly "evolving" a single Appmon into a single new form. Instead, all progression to higher Grades revolves around two compatible Appmon (or their Appmon Chips) undergoing AppGattai to combine together.
- Main article: Evolution/Anime#Digimon Adventure:
Evolution in Digimon Adventure: works similarly to how it does in the original Digimon Adventure. Unlike the original Adventure, Adventure: also explores the idea of multiple routes of evolution for partner Digimon.
- Main article: Evolution/Anime#Digimon Ghost Game
How evolution works in Digimon Ghost Game has not been explained yet, but appears to be related to a "vitals gauge" readout on the human partner's Digivice-V-. Ghost Game also explores the idea of multiple routes of evolutions for partner Digimon.
As C'mon Digimon is heavily based on the original V-Pet, evolution works in the same way as in it, although it is only mentioned in passing as no normal evolutions are seen during the course of the one-shot. Abe Makoto is shown to be training his Greymon, Hard Armor III, to evolve into the hidden character, Metal Greymon, though his Digimon is killed and his dock is destroyed by Jousaki Shinichirou and his Deathmon before that can happen. Kamon Kentarou's Bun is unable to evolve into the Adult level in spite of training and the passing of time, which Shinichirou realizes is because it's a "damemon", a Digimon born every thousand or so that can't evolve no matter what.
Shinichirou's Deathmon is able to take the form of the Digimon whose data was loaded onto it, taking the form of Death Airdramon, Death Devimon, Death Tyranomon, Death Metal Greymon (its strongest form, born from the data of Makoto's Greymon) and finally Death Meramon during its fight against Bun.
In Digimon Adventure V-Tamer 01, evolution follows similar rules to the virtual pets. Evolution is generally one-way and relatively permanent, although it can be undone if the Digimon is heavily wounded, and some Digimon can suppress the power of their evolved form and exist in a lower-level form.
Unlike in the anime series, Tamers in V-Tamer 01 cannot trigger evolution at will. However, Tamers with two Digivice 01, namely Saiba Neo and Fujimoto Hideto, can perform Jogress and Partition at will.
- Zeromaru, the partner of Yagami Taichi, was born as a Botamon and later evolved into Koromon, Agumon, and V-dramon. As the series progresses, Zeromaru evolves twice more into Aero V-dramon and Ulforce V-dramon, and stays evolved. He also uses the Digimental to Mode Change into Ulforce V-dramon Future Mode.
- Three Agumon from Holy Angel Castle evolve off-screen into Centalmon, Meramon, and Greymon.
- Lord Holy Angemon is able to assume the evolved form of Seraphimon at will. He usually seals away his ability to evolve to the Ultimate level, as the power that the form radiates is disruptive to others around him. However, after being defeated by Arkadimon Adult, his reduced Winning Percentage means that he is unable to become Seraphimon again, and he instead evolves into Dominimon.
- As the series progresses, Leo the Leomon evolves into Panjyamon and Regulumon.
- Before the hatching of Arkadimon, Neo frequently uses random Digimon that he Jogresses together. He also uses repeated Jogressing and Partitioning of the same Digimon as a tactic in battle, as both processes completely restore the health of the Digimon involved. Digimon that he has Jogressed include:
- Hideto regularly Jogresses his two partners Warg and Melga to form Omegamon. Like Neo, he also uses repeated Jogressing and Partitioning as a tactic to restore their health.
- Throughout the series, Arkadimon evolves into each of its forms, from Baby II all the way to Ultimate, by consuming the data of other Digimon. After Arkadimon is defeated in its Ultimate form by Zeromaru, Saiba Neo uses the Digimental to evolve it further into Arkadimon Super Ultimate.
- Demon evolves into Demon Super Ultimate by consuming Arkadimon Super Ultimate's data from within.
During the crossover chapters with Digimon Adventure 02 (Double Tamer) and Digimon Frontier (Frontier Generation), V-mon and Kanbara Takuya can evolve at will with the same rules and methods (Armor Evolution and Spirit Evolution, respectively) of their own series. The former also shows the ability to remove his armour as Fladramon, devolving to V-mon while leaving the armour behind.
Despite happening in the same continuity as V-Tamer 01, evolution in New Courage is now fully controllable and Zeromaru can go between his Adult and Perfect forms at will, utilizing the former as his base form and the latter to fight. As he explains, whether due to the polyhedron's influence or being rusty after not fighting for so long, he's incapable of becoming Ulforce V-dramon in spite of that being his base form at the end of V-Tamer. Agumon, coming from Digimon Adventure:, works in the same way as he does there, with his Yagami Taichi being able to evolve him into Greymon at will.
During the last fight against the polyhedron, the power of Courage of both V-Tamer and Adventure:'s Yagami Taichi synchronized, creating a massive Crest of Courage in the sky, which Warp Evolved Zeromaru and Agumon into Ulforce V-dramon Future Mode and an incomplete War Greymon, respectively. The forms were lost after the battle, and at the very least, the latter was incapable of evolving into that form normally afterwards.
During his fight against Kuga Yuuya and Black, Taiga Warp Evolves his Agumon into War Greymon. While no other evolutions are shown in the manga, Rindou Akiho was fully aware of Agumon's ability to evolve at will before she saw it, as previous to the fight with Black, her Digitorin fought with Agumon and she pointed out that it'd be sad if their fight ended before Agumon could evolve, also implying her own partner is capable of evolving at will as well. As such, evolution seems to work similarly to the anime, where the Tamer can induce it at will and it isn't permanent, with War Greymon going back to Agumon after the fight.
During the fight against the Demons Hackers in their secret base, Aiba Takumi evolves his three Digimon: Terriermon, Hagurumon and Palmon, into their Adult forms: Galgomon, Guardromon and Togemon, all at once. Takumi is shown to be able to execute the evolution at will, but no other details are given of how evolution works in the manga.
In Digimon Dreamers, evolution follows similar rules to the virtual pets. Evolution is one-way and permanent. Unlike in the anime series, Tamers in Dreamers cannot trigger evolution at will, though their bond with their Partner Digimon can affect it.
The protagonist Digimon, Pulsemon, has as his main goal to evolve, which motivates him to train hard as well as partner up with Kodou Ritsu. However, his village was inflicted with a curse of unknown origin that stops the Digimon born in it from evolving. During his fight against Orgemon in "The Pulse of Evolution" and "Inner Bulkmon", he seemingly managed to break the curse, however, his evolution into Bulkmon only affected his head, leaving the rest of his body as it was. His body then kept evolving random parts while returning the others to Pulsemon's, going from head, to arms, to legs. Ritsu wondered if this was a failed evolution, but Bokomon explained that Pulsemon had successfully gained the energy for evolution thanks to his bond with Ritsu, and said energy was trying to break the curse, hence why he only got partial evolutions. He then fully evolved into Bulkmon and defeated Orgemon, only to then go back to Pulsemon. Afterwards, his body parts kept undergoing random evolutions, but due to the curse, he still couldn't fully evolve.
This phenomenon is given the name Localized Evolution in "Steal Pulsemon!". Dr. Vademon is interested in it, as he wants to use it in his research of Super Chimairamon. However, according to Espimon in "Spy Digimon Espimon", Pulsemon's data on it is worthless for Dr. Vademon as Pulsemon's Localized Evolution is caused by Asunaro Village's curse and, therefore, not a natural ability of his.
Digimon evolve after reaching a certain lifespan. Baby I Digimon can only evolve into a single Baby II Digimon, but afterwards, Digimon will have several possibilities for their evolutions. Which Digimon they will evolve into, if any, depends on specific conditions they meet, such as their stats, how many moves they have, how many care mistakes they have, how many attacks they've learned, how many battles they've had, etc.
Beyond the normal evolution lines, some evolutions can be obtained through special means.
- If a Baby II-level Digimon sleeps in Kunemon's Bed, it'll evolve into Kunemon.
- If a Digimon poops too much outside of the toilet, they'll evolve into Scumon.
- If a Child-level Digimon fails to meet any evolution conditions when the evolution time comes, they'll evolve into Numemon.
- If an Adult-level Digimon is at least 15 days old, has a Discipline below 50%, and is then scolded, it may evolve into Vademon.
- If the player interacts with the Monzaemon plush in Toy Town with a Numemon as their partner, said Numemon will evolve into Monzaemon. Unlike the previous examples, Numemon can also naturally evolve into Monzaemon.
Furthermore, evolution items exist in Digimon World. Upon using one, a Digimon will evolve into the Digimon of that item.
Evolution is not a mechanic or ability available to the player in these games. Instead, Digimon can learn Variable Moves which let them call upon the Special Moves of other Digimon of higher Evolution Stages, and the player can use Yagami Taichi's Digivice to convert Digimon of any Evolution Stage to be their ally.
Digimon can be evolved into their next level in the Evolution Phase of a player's turn. To do so, the evolved card is set on top of their currently-in-play Digimon card. However, they must have at least as much DP as the evolved card needs, as well as being the same colour. Option cards can be used to bypass these requirements, however.
Evolution cannot be undone normally. However, Regression (退化 Taika), an Option Card that discards the top card of your Digimon and returns it to its previous stage, with doubled HP, can be used to do so.
Digimon can be evolved by talking to the Evolution Operators. A Child Digimon may evolve to Adult Digimon at LV 11, an Adult Digimon may evolve to Perfect Digimon at LV 21, and a Perfect Digimon may evolve to Ultimate Digimon at LV 31. One level after evolving, the Digimon will learn every technique of their level that their current form, as well as the Digimon that were Jogressed into them, can learn. What Digimon will be born from an evolution is decided by both the previous Digimon and their current EP (Evolution Points).
Jogress Evolution is also in the game, and can also be done by talking to the Evolution Operators. Child-level Digimon cannot be Jogressed. Upon Jogress, a new Digimon will be created. The newly-created Digimon will be one evolution level lower than the lowest evolved Digimon that created it (for example, if two Adults are Jogressed, a Child will be born, as well as if an Adult and a Perfect are Jogressed). The newly created Digimon will have a higher max level than its parents, based on their own levels, as well as 1 more EP than the highest EP of both of them. Furthermore, the newly born Digimon will be able to learn every move of its parents once it hits certain levels.
Evolution is completely one-way in Digimon World 2.
Evolution is mostly identical to how it works in Digital Card Battle. However, a new addition to the game is Armor Evolution. Usable only by Partner Cards who have obtained at least one Digimental, they can be immediately evolved into an Armor-level Digimon the moment they're played on the field. Armor Digimon cannot evolve further without the use of two Option Cards that devolve Armor Digimon into their Child stage and allow them to become Perfects. Every Partner Card has two Digimentals, and thus two possible Armor Evolutions, except for V-mon, who has three; which will be used can only be chosen outside of battle.
NPC Digimon who originate from Digimon Adventure and Digimon Adventure 02 will evolve over the course of the game. Upon evolving, they will have different, stronger decks, and are counted as different characters for wins/losses. The Digimon Adventure 02 partner Digimon specifically have Extra Arenas in which they battle the player using all their evolution stages. Wormmon does not have an Extra Arena, but he can still be fought in all of his stages except Gran Kuwagamon in Dark City's Battle Arena.
Playable Digimon can temporarily evolve by touching Culumon, who appears halfway through each match. As long as they are evolved, they are entirely invincible and are able to use much more powerful attacks. Culumon only appears once per battle, thus only one evolution can happen per match.
Ten playable Digimon are able to evolve during matches: Agumon, Gabumon, Patamon, Tailmon, V-mon, Wormmon, Guilmon, Renamon, Terriermon, and Impmon. Each of these Digimon has one evolved form, which gives them a new, stronger set of moves. Their evolved forms can also be unlocked as separate playable characters by clearing the 1P Mode with the respective base Digimon.
All playable Digimon possess an Evolution Gauge that fills as they deal damage in a match. Once the gauge is full, Digimon who can evolve undergo evolution. The Evolution Gauge slowly depletes over time while they are evolved. Once the Evolution Gauge empties, the Digimon devolves to its previous form. The evolved Digimon can also expend the gauge at any time to use their most powerful attack technique, but devolve immediately upon the technique's completion or interruption. Digimon who do not evolve can use their most powerful attack technique only when their Evolution gauge is full. This expends their entire Evolution Gauge, but does not devolve them.
Digimon have two different kinds of evolutions in Digimon World 3: their natural evolutions, and optional evolutions. Natural evolutions are obtained by hitting certain levels: LV 5 for Adult, LV 20 for Perfect, and LV 40 for Ultimate. Optional evolutions are obtained by levelling up certain evolutions (for example, levelling up Greymon would give you Metal Greymon if your partner isn't Agumon, who obtains them naturally) or by increasing a Digimon's nature resistances or stats (for example, Agumon will obtain Skull Greymon by increasing its darkness resistance).
A Digimon can equip up to three evolutions that they have learned at a time. They can switch between these and their base form at any time in-battle by using a turn, and one form can be assigned as their "Battle Evolution" so that they will start all battle encounters in that form. Evolutions can be equipped and unequipped by talking to Dr. Kadomatsu in the Asuka City Digimon Lab, or to Piccolomon in other locations.
Certain compatible pairs of Digimon can Jogress Evolve, which in this game just acts as a powerful attack that requires an MP cost from both participating Digimon. It can be activated in the Tag menu, as an alternative to just tagging out, and any Digimon that can be Jogressed with are marked with a red orb icon in that menu. When activated, a cutscene will show the two Digimon Jogressing and performing one technique in their Jogressed form, before switching to the Digimon that was part of the pair that was not in-battle when the Jogress was activated. The majority of Digimon that can be Jogressed are also available as regular evolution options, but there are three who only appear by Jogressing, all of whom are from Digimon Frontier.
|Jogress Evolutions in Digimon World 3|
|Component Digimon||Jogressed Digimon||MP||Effect|
|Hookmon + Greymon
Dinohumon + Kyubimon
|Agnimon||80||Agnimon attacks with Burning Salamander.|
160 Power / Magic / Fire Element (64) / No extra effects.
|Gryzmon + Growmon||Garummon||80||Garummon attacks with Solar Laser.|
160 Power / Magic / Machine Element (64) / No extra effects.
|XV-mon + Stingmon||Paildramon||100||Paildramon attacks with Desperado Blaster.|
600 Power / Magic / Fire Element (72) / No extra effects.
|Taomon + Holy Angemon||Hououmon||200||Hououmon releases a healing wave of light.|
Revives and fully heals all Digimon in the party.
|Megalo Growmon + Digitamamon||Saint Galgomon||160||Saint Galgomon attacks with Burst Shot.|
850 Power / Physical / Machine Element (48) / No extra effects.
|Imperialdramon: Paladin Mode + Diablomon||Ancient Greymon||480||Ancient Greymon attacks with Omega Burst.|
800 Power / Magic / Fire Element (127) / Reduces foe's Power by 127.
|Dukemon + Belial Vamdemon||Beelzebumon: Blast Mode||320||Beelzebumon: Blast Mode attacks with Death Slinger.|
850 Power / Physical / No Element / No extra effects.
|Black War Greymon + Gran Kuwagamon||Diablomon||260||Diablomon attacks with Paradise Lost.|
999 Power / Physical / No Element / No extra effects.
|Imperialdramon: Dragon Mode + Seraphimon||Imperialdramon: Paladin Mode||250||Imperialdramon: Paladin Mode attacks with Omega Blade.|
580 Power / Physical / No Element / Effective against Dark Digimon.
|War Greymon + Metal Garurumon||Omegamon||240||Omegamon attacks with both Grey Sword and Garuru Cannon.|
850 Power / Physical / No Element / No extra effects.
In battle, Digimon have a Blast Gauge that fills up as they take damage. Once it is full, they will immediately undergo Blast Evolution: a temporary evolution into a more powerful form that lasts for several turns. While Blast Evolved, they will have automatic access to that form's Special Move, and all techniques (both Special and loaded) can be used without any MP cost. If a Blast Evolved Digimon is switched out or evolved into another form, the Blast Evolution state ends. Most of the time, a Digimon will Blast Evolve into their next natural evolution that they have not yet unlocked until Level 39, when they unlock their Ultimate form; after Level 39, they will Blast Evolve into other Ultimate Digimon.
There are two types of evolution that Digimon can undergo in battle. When their Evolution Gauge is filled, they can enter a state where, whenever they attack, they will temporarily Slide Evolve into their Beast Form Hybrid form and perform a stronger attack. The Evolution Gauge slowly decreases over time, and Slide Evolution ceases once it is empty.
When a Digimon collects five gold crystals, they are able to perform an Ancient Spirit Evolution. If they make contact with the enemy while initiating the evolution, they will evolve into one of the Warrior Ten (or Susanoomon for the Extra Agnimon and Wolfmon) and unleash one immensely powerful attack, at the cost of emptying the crystal gauge.
Fourteen playable Digimon are able to evolve during matches: Agumon, Gabumon, Piyomon, Tentomon, Patamon, Tailmon, Gomamon, Palmon, V-mon, Guilmon, Flamon, Black Agumon, Black Gabumon, and Black Guilmon. Each of these Digimon has two evolved forms, which each give them a new, stronger set of moves.
All playable Digimon have an Evolution Gauge that fills as they collect orbs of energy, that are dropped by all fighters in a match when they are hit. Each time it fills, they are able to evolve to their next form. Their evolution lasts until they are KO'd, at which point they will respawn in their previous form.
When the Evolution Gauge is filled while a Digimon is fully evolved, or if the Digimon cannot evolve (like the rest of the playable fighters), they become able to use an "Ultra" finishing move.
Digimon can evolve by filling their evolution gauge, which can be done by driving over data patches. Evolution is automatic whenever the gauge reaches particular thresholds. All Digimon begin races in their Child forms (or as Agnimon), with their evolution gauge half-full (1 1/2 bars). If the gauge reaches 2 bars full, they evolve into their Adult forms (or Vritramon, in Agnimon's case); if it reaches a full state (3 bars), they can spend part of their gauge to use their Special Move. Every time a Digimon takes damage, their evolution gauge is depleted. If it falls below one full bar, they devolve to their Baby II form (or Flamon, in Agnimon's case).
Evolution can be managed from a Digimon's stats profile, under the Evolution Route option. Because of this, Digimon in the player's party may be evolved or devolved at any time the player chooses outside of battles. Evolution in Digimon Story is based around pre-set evolution lines, where each individual Digimon species has a short list of Digimon that it can evolve into (usually one, occasionally two or three). To evolve into a particular Digimon, a Digimon must first meet that Digimon's minimum evolution requirements such as level, attribute EXP, stats, Friendship, and Stress all meeting certain thresholds (in the case of Stress and, in some rare cases like Devimon, Friendship, it must not exceed a maximum threshold).
In some special cases (like Dot Agumon), the Digimon may only be evolved into if the player has previously owned a Digimon of the same species, or if they presently have 100% scan data for it.
Some Digimon, such as Armor Digimon, also require that the player obtain a matching item (e.g. a Digimental for Armor Digimon) before they can evolve any Digimon into them. These items are not consumed by the evolution process, so once they have been obtained, the Digimon can be evolved into as many times as the player wants.
Every time a Digimon devolves, its Aptitude stat increases. This increases the Digimon's maximum level cap.
Digimon can be evolved upon reaching specific conditions. While Digimon must be first evolved in-battle, the player can then choose which of their evolutions they'll use outside of battle. Obtaining a new evolution will trigger a cutscene where the Tamer of the evolving Digimon performs a Digisoul Charge. If said Tamer is Daimon Masaru, he'll also punch an enemy Digimon and deal some damage.
The mechanics of evolution in Sunburst and Moonlight are mostly identical to those of Digimon Story. While evolving can still be accessed from Digimon's stat screens, the DigiLab PC at the player's Tamer Home also allows for easy access to managing evolution for all Digimon in the player's possession (in the party, bank, or Farm Islands alike). Evolution options are also somewhat expanded, and it is more common for Digimon to not only have more evolution options, but for those evolution options to have multiple evolution options themselves.
Sunburst and Moonlight also introduce Jogress Evolution, which is available under the "Special Evolution" menu of the DigiLab PC. There are many Digimon, including Digimon who are available through conventional evolution, who can be formed by Jogress using specific combinations of Digimon (often, there are multiple viable combinations for Jogressing into the same Digimon). Like conventional evolution, however, Jogress Evolution also requires that the new Digimon's minimum evolution requirements be met by the first Digimon selected to be used for the Jogress.
Unlike Digimon Story, Armor Evolution is now managed separately under the "Special Evolution" menu. Otherwise, it functions the same, with both the Digimental item requirement and the minimum evolution requirements.
Digimon can evolve by reaching certain levels: level 11 for Adult, level 25 for Perfect and level 41 for Ultimate. Evolution is temporary, and consumes the player's Digisoul. Some Digimon have stronger stages known as Burst Modes, these need specific items to be unlocked. Other Digimon have alternate Ultimate levels that also require specific items to be unlocked. Jogress Evolution is also possible between specific Digimon.
Evolution in Re:Digitize is similar to how it is in the original Digimon World, but the Ultimate level has been added.
Evolutions are unlocked as the player proceeds through the game and reaches the points in which they were obtained in the Digimon Adventure anime. During the first appearance of each evolution (including Skull Greymon), a cutscene will play, adapting their evolution sequence from the anime with in-game graphics, and afterwards, they'll remain evolved for free for the battle. Afterwards, the Digimon can evolve in-battle by paying an SP cost (except Skull Greymon, which is fully unplayable), which is 5 SP for the Adult level and 15 SP for the Perfect level, and will remain evolved for the rest of the battle afterwards, triggering a short scene where they spin around before changing to the next stage and chanting its name. If a Digimon is already at a higher level, the cost of that evolution is removed from the overall cost of their next evolution. Evolving increases stats, resets lowered stats, removes status effects, and changes the Digimon's moves for stronger ones with a higher SP cost. Digimon may also begin fights evolved by equipping the EVO Boost DigiPiece line, which let them start battles in higher levels depending on the level of the DigiPiece itself.
Digimon start at the Child level. While the Baby II to Child evolution of the first episode of Adventure, "Adrift? Island of Adventure!" does happen in the game, it is purely a cutscene, and the Baby II-level Partner Digimon are not playable. Other moments when the Chosen Children's Digimon dip below Child also do happen in the game as they do in the anime, but they just become non-playable during these segments.
During Episode 23, "The Fairy! Piccolomon", Agumon is incapable of evolving, due to Yagami Taichi's worries that Agumon would evolve into Skull Greymon again. As such, the Evolution command is unusable and the EVO Boost I DigiPiece will have no effects. This is solved by the end of the chapter, allowing Agumon to evolve normally again. Also, even after Tokomon evolves back into Patamon and becomes playable again in Episode 26, "The Whispering Imp, Pico Devimon", he is unable to become Angemon again until Episode 44, "Pump and Gottsu are Shibuya-type Digimon", much like in the anime.
Digimon other than the playable ones are shown evolving during the story:
- A Piyomon, envolved in a dark aura, serves as the final boss of Sub-Episode 2, "Piyomon Runs Amok!". This Piyomon evolved from a Pyocomon of the Pyocomon Village due to eating a DigiTomato, and returns to its previous form after being beaten in battle and exhausting its energy.
Every playable Digimon has two evolutions. Obtaining enough EP will allow a Digimon to evolve into their next stage. While the first and second stage are unique for each character, some of the thirds are shared between two characters (for example, Agumon and Gabumon both evolve into Omegamon).
Evolutions are managed at Mikagura Mirei's DigiLab. The mechanics of evolution in the Cyber Sleuth games are similar to those of the earlier Digimon Story games. Almost every Digimon has a list of Digimon that it can evolve from and evolve into. To evolve into a particular Digimon, a Digimon must first meet that Digimon's minimum evolution requirements such as level, stats, Ability, and Camaraderie all meeting certain thresholds. The only requirement to devolve is that the player has previously encountered the Digimon to be devolved into. Every time a Digimon evolves or devolves, its Ability stat increases, which makes it easier to evolve into forms that require higher minimum Ability.
Jogress Evolution can be performed between certain pairs of Digimon. This works the same way as regular evolution, except that the the player must also have the other component Digimon for the Jogress and both Digimon must have maximum Camaraderie. Once the Jogress has been performed, the Jogressed Digimon is treated like any other Digimon in terms of further evolution or devolution: that is, the Jogress cannot be "undone" to get both component Digimon back, and instead, the Jogressed Digimon can only be devolved into either one of the component Digimon forms.
Some Digimon, specifically Armor Digimon and Hybrid Digimon (although the latter are treated as regular levels in this game) also require that the player obtain a matching Digimental or Legendary Spirit item before they can evolve any Digimon into them. These items are not consumed by the evolution process, so once they have been obtained, the Digimon can be evolved into as many times as the player wants.
In the original version of Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth, Digimon can only evolve into members of the Royal Knights after completing specific late-game quests that each unlock the ability to evolve into one to three of these Digimon. Additionally, in both the regular release of Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth Hacker's Memory and the Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth Complete Edition release, there are some Digimon who can only be evolved into once Hacker's Memory has been completed.
Several NPC Digimon characters evolve during the course of the stories.
- Shiramine Nokia's Agumon and Gabumon become capable of temporarily evolving as Nokia's adventures with them continue. They are depicted as evolving into Greymon and Garurumon, then War Greymon and Metal Garurumon. In Cyber Sleuth Chapter 10, during the fight at Under Zero, Nokia gains the ability to fuse them into their original form: Omegamon of the Royal Knights.
- When Sanada Arata accompanies Aiba Takumi/Ami or Amazawa Keisuke as a partner, his Keramon is seen in higher evolved forms as the games progress: Chrysalimon, Infermon, and Diablomon.
- In Cyber Sleuth Chapter 15, Kamishiro Yuuko's Rize Greymon evolves into Gaioumon when she asks it whether it will stay with her, even though she is no longer using the Kamishiro Yuugo avatar.
- In Hacker's Memory Chapter 16, Date Makiko's Lopmon evolves into Andiramon when she confronts Mysterious Digital Face.
- In Hacker's Memory Chapter 17, Imai Chitose's Ankylomon fuses with the Angemon that Yuri left with him to form Shakkoumon.
- In Hacker's Memory Chapter 18, Mishima Ryuji's Cyberdramon evolves into Justimon in response to Ryuji's determination to make amends.
Evolution in -next 0rder- is similar to how it is in Re:Digitize, but streamlined. Less time is required for each stage, and it is easier to evolve. Furthermore, Paildramon's dojo allows the player to block certain evolution paths, which helps to evolve a Digimon to the specific one the player wants, and can allow a Digimon to evolve into forms it does not properly fulfill the requirements of. Furthermore, Jogress Evolution is possible in Paildramon's dojo, which will evolve one of Takuto/Shiki's Digimon to the Jogressed stage while devolving the other one one stage.
A new form of evolution added to the game is ExE, short for Extra Cross Evolution. ExE allows the player's Digimon to fuse together in-battle, getting them a major power boost. ExE can be triggered by the player by spending 150 Order Points from both Digimon when they have max friendship with each other, or after both of their Digimon fall in battle randomly. However, ExE can only be used once per day.
Several NPC Digimon characters evolve during the course of the story.
- Yukimura and Rikka, the partner Digimon of Takuto/Shiki's friends Hirose Kouta and Oofuchi Himari, evolve from their Child-levels to their further levels, all the way to Ultimate. Yukimura also evolves incorrectly into Skull Greymon at one point, due to Kouta forcing the evolution, expecting him to become Mugendramon instead and thinking he could control said Digimon, only for Yukimura to lose control and having to be taken down instead.
- Several other Digimon also undergo alterations to become Mugendramon during the story, much like how it happened in the postgame of the original Digimon World.
- During the final part of the story, Analogman possessing Tsuzuki Shoma evolves Omegamon Zwart D into Omegamon Alter-B, a process he calls Altered Super Evolution (変性超進化 Hensei chō shinka; Dub: Ultimate Altered Digivolution). As he explains, he accomplished this by breaking Omegamon Zwart D's mind, as he realized such a process could bring forth altered forms of Digimon other than Mugendramon by watching Kouta's Yukimura evolve into Skull Greymon.
- Meicoomon evolves to Meicrackmon: Vicious Mode after the White Fang uses a machine to evolve her into said form, then banishes her back to the Next Order universe (having already been there once before). Takuto/Shiki helps her to return to her original World for the second time, where Meicrackmon defeats White Fang.
- In the International Edition only, Kurorin and Kurocchi evolve throughout the game. In MOD Ship Cave, they fight as Gabumon (Black) and Agumon (Black). In Great Fault Ex Machina, they've evolved to Garurumon (Black) and Greymon (Blue), and then they evolve even further into Were Garurumon (Black) and Metal Greymon (Virus). Their final encounter is in Infinity Cauldron, where they've become Metal Garurumon (Black) and Black War Greymon. After losing, they Jogress into Omegamon Zwart for a moment, only for them to immediately separate.
- In the International Edition only, Rosemon angrily evolves to Rosemon: Burst Mode after returning to her Palace and seeing that her former minions had pooped everywhere. Takuto/Shiki have to defeat her to calm her down.
- In the International Edition only, Shine Greymon evolves to Shine Greymon: Burst Mode to help defeat Chaosmon.
- In the International Edition only, Piemon and Vamdemon are forced to Jogress into Voltobautamon by the Grudgeful Hand who then possesses it so it could try and destroy the World. After it is defeated, it clones the body, reverts the duo back to their prior forms, and then has friendly rematches with Takuto/Shiki.
Natural evolution seems to be unheard of in the Digimon Survive setting. Evolution is only attainable through the power of human children, which makes them desirable to enemies. However, negative feelings in a human can lead to a Dark Evolution instead, where the Digimon goes berserk, magnifying said human's negative side.
In gameplay, how evolution works differs depending on whether a Digimon is a Partner or Free.
- For Partner Digimon, evolutions are unlocked at certain points in the story. Afterwards, they can evolve through the Evolution menu in-battle. While Digimon normally regain SP once a round is over, an evolved Digimon will instead lose SP (5 SP per turn for an Adult evolution, 10 SP for a Perfect one, 15 SP for an Ultimate one), and they need to pay the same amount to evolve. Evolution can also be undone through the Evolution menu. Partner Digimon will always start a battle in the Child level, which they also have throughout the story. Most Partner Digimon have specific evolution paths with very few deviations, though Agumon has three different choices for every level but Super Ultimate, which instead has two. Which he gets depends on which emotion is highest on Momotsuka Takuma's Karma meter: Harmony will make Agumon evolve into Data-type Digimon, Moral will make him evolve into Vaccine-type Digimon, and Wrathful will make him evolve into Virus-type Digimon.
- Agumon's evolution into Omegamon works in a slightly different way than the rest, as it is a Fusion with Gabumon. It costs 20 SP to evolve and maintain, and requires Gabumon (in any of his forms) to be deployed as well. Despite being a fusion of both Agumon and Gabumon, only Agumon can initiate it, it causes Gabumon to vanish from the field upon evolving, and Omegamon is considered to only be Agumon in-game. If Agumon then reverts to any previous form, Gabumon will reappear on the field in the exact same place and state he was in before the evolution.
- For Free Digimon, evolution requires the use of specific items (Mature Enlightenment Slabs for Adult-level evolutions, Perfect Enlightenment Slabs for Perfect-level ones, Ultimate Enlightenment Slabs for Ultimate-level ones), must be triggered from the Status menu outside of combat, and is permanent. Unlike Partner Digimon, Free Digimon have complex evolution trees, although they can only ever get one evolution per level as their evolutions cannot be undone. The DLC Digimon, Guilmon, only has one choice for each level.
In either case, evolution increases stats and changes both the normal and special attacks of the evolved Digimon.
Story-wise, evolutions occur as follows:
|Story evolutions in Digimon Survive|
|Human/Digimon Pair||Part||Route||New Evolution||Description|
|Momotsuka Takuma & Koromon||Prologue||N/A||Agumon||After meeting Koromon for the first time, Takuma is attacked by a Gottsumon. Koromon tries to protect him, which makes Takuma protect Koromon in turn. Realizing they were allies, Koromon evolves into Agumon.|
|Momotsuka Takuma & Agumon||Part 1||N/A||Greymon, Tyranomon or Tuskmon||During the fight against, Takuma wishes to run away in fear as they're overpowered by the powered-up Digimon, who had also called allies to the fight. However, Agumon convinces him not to give up, which gives Takuma the courage to continue. Agumon is then filled with power, evolving into his Adult form (Greymon, Tyranomon or Tuskmon, depending on Takuma's Karma Meter).|
|Hinata Minoru & Falcomon||Part 2||N/A||Diatrymon||After the party meets back with the Professor, Hinata Minoru wants to be a hero and protect him, but is too scared to do so. Falcomon convinces him that he can, which gives Minoru the courage to pursue his dream. This allows Falcomon to evolve into Diatrymon.|
|Shibuya Aoi & Labramon||Part 2||N/A||Dobermon||During the fight against Fangmon, Shibuya Aoi's underconfidence makes her scared. Labramon convinces her she is far more courageous than she realized, since she had not ran away yet. Aoi regains her courage thanks to that, whichs let Labramon evolve into Dobermon.|
|Kimishima Saki & Floramon||Part 3||N/A||Vegimon||During the fight against Cyclomon, it calls out Kimishima Saki for not doing her best in combat and not genuinely caring about rescuing Tominaga Ryō, who he had hurt before. Saki is affected heavily by this, as she realizes he is right, and she only did what she did because she wanted to be seen as a good girl who did the right thing. Floramon tells her that she had an amazing heart and just needed to listen to it, which makes Saki realize that she truly did want to save Ryo. This allows Floramon to evolve into Vegimon.|
|Tominaga Ryō & Kunemon||Part 4||Truth||Flymon||When Kunemon is wounded protecting Ryō from Palmon, Piyomon and Patamon, Ryō wonders why Kunemon cares so much about protecting him, and why the other three were so stubborn since they didn't look serious; he realizes that made them like himself, never giving up even if it was pitiful. He acknowledges Kunemon's determination, and shows his own, emulating Takuma. This allows Kunemon to evolve into Flymon.|
|Shinonome Miu & Shakomon||Part 4||N/A||Shellmon||After Shinonome Kaito, Piyomon and Patamon are hurt protecting Shinonome Miu from Garurumon, in tears, she asks Shakomon what she should do, to which Shakomon asks her what she wanted to do. Realizing she does not want Kaito to die after fighting with him, nor Piyomon and Patamon after lying to them about being a sorceress, and she wants to protect them instead, she asks Shakomon to protect Kaito. Shakomon starts glowing, proclaiming how happy she is that Miu has been honest with her feelings, because her whole-hearted wish will make Shakomon as strong as Miu needs her to be. Shakomon then evolves into Shellmon.|
|Kayama Shuuji & Lopmon||Part 5||All routes except Truth||Wendimon
|After Kayama Shuuji completely breaks down due to Archnemon's manipulations and his own weakness and trauma, he physically attacks his own Partner, Lopmon, after emotionally abusing him during their entire partnership. This causes Lopmon to be covered in a black fog, unlike the golden glow of a normal evolution. Shuuji continues to attack him to force him to evolve, despite Lopmon's fear, which ultimately causes Lopmon to Dark Evolve into Wendimon and go berserk as a response to Shuuji's rage.|
|Truth||Turuiemon||After Kayama Shuuji completely breaks down due to Archnemon's manipulations and his own weakness and trauma, he physically attacks his own Partner, Lopmon, after emotionally abusing him during their entire partnership. This causes Lopmon to be covered in a black fog, unlike the golden glow of a normal evolution. Ryō intervenes and punches Shuuji, making him realize how terribly he treated Lopmon, when Lopmon had worked hard for his sake; and how he wasn't alone, everyone was with him, especially Lopmon. Now back to his senses, Shuuji acknowledges that he saw all of his own weaknesses in his partner despite said partner being so much stronger than himself. Lopmon is happy at finally being praised, which Shuuji had wanted to do for a long time, but in this omment, what he most wants is to protect everyone and live up to Lopmon's expectations of him, to be someone who Lopmon could be proud of and who could reward Lopmon's efforts, so he could live without regret. Shuuji's powerful feelings allow Lopmon to evolve into Turuiemon.|
|Momotsuka Takuma & Agumon||Part 5||All routes except Truth||Metal Greymon, Triceramon or Megadramon||After Wendimon starts talking with Shuuji's voice about how he shouldn't exist, the group realizes that they are to blame for Shuuji breaking down, as they put the pressure of being a leader on him due to his age without realizing how it affected him. Agumon and Takuma decide to save Shuuji and Lopmon themselves, and Takuma realizes he wanted power to be able to challenge his feelings and anger. This triggers the evolution of Agumon into his Perfect form (Metal Greymon, Triceramon or Megadramon, depending on Takuma's Karma Meter).|
|Truth||Takuma is motivated by Shuuji's growth and Lopmon's evolution, realizing that the desires to save and protect overlapped and turned into power, and also wants to make Archnemon pay for what she did to Shuuji. This triggers the evolution of Agumon into his Perfect form (depending on Takuma's Karma Meter).|
|Professor & Gabumon||Part 6||N/A||Garurumon||As depicted in a flashback set prior to the game's events, Gabumon evolved into Garurumon on his own as he wished to become stronger and braver to protect Haru. Unlike the other Partner Digimon, he kept this form afterwards.|
|Shibuya Aoi & Labramon||Any time from Part 5 onward||N/A||Cerberumon||
Aoi wants to become more reliable, not for the others but for herself. When the group are attacked by a Kuwagamon, to their surprise as no enemies had come to the woods before, Labramon and Aoi agree they cannot beat that enemy, as they only had the power to protect, not to overpower, which Aoi wants so that she can properly protect everyone. Her resolve flows into Labramon, causing her to evolve into Cerberumon.
|Kimishima Saki & Floramon||Any time from Part 5 onward||N/A||Blossomon||
Saki worries about not being able to properly face Aoi, so she asks Floramon to pretend she was Aoi to practice. However, they are attacked by a Siesamon, who Floramon is unable to defeat. Saki proposes fleeing, but quickly stops herself, as doing so would put the rest in danger. In response, Floramon evolves; although Saki initially fears that she might turn into something creepy or uncool again, she becomes Blossomon.
|Shinonome Miu & Shakomon||Any time from Part 5 onward||N/A||Mermaimon||
When Miu fears that going home again would mean leaving Shakomon behind, Shakomon points out that Kaito would still be with her, but she senses an intruder coming, silences Miu and prepares to fight, despite Miu's skepticism that they could alone. The intruder is a Birdramon, who Shakomon cannot defeat. Miu decide not to always rely on her brother and to come out of her shell, but nonetheless feels frustrated and confused as she does not know what to do. Shakomon stops her panic, and Miu realizes that if she didn't know what to do, that only means that she must struggle even harder, and her intense desire to look ahead even against pain and struggle causes Shakomon to evolve into Mermaimon.
|Tominaga Ryō & Kunemon||Any time from Part 5 onward||Truth||Jewelbeemon||
While training together, Ryō and Kunemon are attacked by an Ikkakumon Despite wanting to run away, Ryō relents and stays to help Kumemon, but Ikkakumon defeats Kunemon. Ryō blames himself, thinking anyone else could take the enemy on but he could only use brute force, not intelligence, so he puts himself between both Digimon to protect Kunemon, who does not want him to sacrifice himself for his sake. Ryō acknowledges Kunemon as his best friend and proclaims he will not let the Ikkakumon hurt him, and in response, Kunemon evolves into Jewelbeemon and gains the ability to speak.
|Kayama Shuuji & Lopmon||Any time from Part 5 onward||Truth||Andiramon (Deva)||
While training together, Shuuji and Lopmon are attacked by a Kabuterimon; since Shuuji is too exhausted from their training to flee, Lopmon, despite also being exhausted, stands his ground, but the Kabuterimon is too strong for him. This causes Shuuji's lack of confidence to resurface, as he accuses himself of being unable to anything and therefore unable to win anyone's approval as he is, despite how he sought his own before. Lopmon points out how, no matter how low he fell, he'd always believe in him. Shuuji puts himself between two to save his friend Lopmon, because he cannot give up in the middle of a fight if he was to make Lopmon proud of him. Shuuji's sense of responsibility and resolve causes Lopmon to evolve into Andiramon (Deva).
|Hinata Minoru & Falcomon||Any time from Part 6 onward||N/A||Yatagaramon||
While practising heroic phrases, Minoru is attacked by a Guardromon. Takuma and Falcomon come to his aid, and when Falcomon asks Minoru to stand back, he refuses as doing so would be unheroic. The Guardromon easily beats Falcomon, for which Minoru blamed himself for not being a hero. Falcomon disputes this, pointing out that he had already started growing, and that his pure feelings would give him strength. Falcomon affirms to Minoru that he believes that Minoru could make him stronger, as Takuma had with Agumon, and he evolves into Yatagaramon.
|Shinonome Kaito & Dracumon||Any time from Part 6 onward||N/A||Vamdemon||
When Dracumon scolded Kaito for angering Miu with his continued efforts to baby her, Kaito insists that he does it to protect her, not to win her over. A Kiwimon attacks them, and Dracumon and Kaito insist to Takuma that he let them handle it, but Kiwimon overpowers Dracumon. Kaito laments his inability to protect himself, much less Miu, but Dracumon asks him if he intends to give up, Kaito refuses and declares that he would take hold of any power at his disposal to protect Miu. This allows Dracumon to evolve into Vamdemon.
|Professor & Garurumon||Part 7||N/A||Were Garurumon||After defending the Professor from an attack from Piemon, the Professor asks Garurumon to rejoin him as his Partner Kemonogami, as he does not want Minase Miyuki, Renamon or Garurumon himself to suffer any longer. The rekindling of their bond allows Garurumon to evolve into Were Garurumon.|
|Momotsuka Takuma & Agumon||Part 9||Moral||War Greymon||When Takuma expresses his determination to save Miyuki and go back to the Real World with the others, Agumon instructs Takuma to roar with him, as he needs to hear Takuma's voice. This causes Takuma's feelings to fill Agumon, giving him an incredible power and Warp Evolving him into War Greymon.|
|Wrathful||Mugendramon||When the Kenzoku drive Takuma, Kaito and Aoi back, Takuma's resolve to not lose any more friends incites a strange feeling of pain, yet excitement, in Agumon, who Warp Evolves into Mugendramon.|
|Truth||War Greymon, Dinorexmon or Mugendramon||After Baihumon proves to be too strong of an opponent to beat, Takuma refused to give up and be the one that caused their defeat, since then he couldn't protect Agumon or his world, especially since Baihumon would be the strongest ally if they could convince him to help. The resonance between Takumon and Agumon's feelings then allowed Agumon to evolve into his Ultimate form (War Greymon, Dinorexmon or Mugendramon, depending on which route the player chose in Part 8), in a process Agumon found painful yet exciting.|
|Hinata Minoru & Falcomon||Any time from Part 9 onward||N/A||Valdurmon||
While fighting a Marin Devimon who is too strong for them, Minoru and Falcomon decide to buy Takuma time to get Agumon and the rest. Falcomon asks Minoru to run away, but he refuses to. Minoru tries to think of what Takuma would do, before realizing that Takuma is not around and that he must deal with it himself, as a hero would. Minoru's strong spirit causes Falcomon to evolve into Valdurmon.
|Shibuya Aoi & Labramon||Any time from Part 9 onward||All routes except Wrathful||Anubimon||
While she is lost and crying in the foggy woods, Aoi is attacked by an especially Kenzoku who beats both herself and Labramon up. Aoi refuses to run away, as doing so would endanger the rest of the group, and she refuses to lose anyone ever again. She tells Labramon that she does not want brute power, as Labramon initially assumes, but unwavering justice. Her refusal to give in and her desire to wield power with both humility and wisdom causes Labramon to evolve into Anubimon.
|Kimishima Saki & Floramon||Any time from Part 9 onward||All routes except Wrathful||Ceresmon Medium||
While Takuma is bringing Saki back after she experiences a severe coughing fit, the two are attacked by a Holy Angemon. Floramon offers to buy them time so they could run away, but is unable to stop it. Saki refuses to run away as she was sick of doing so, be it from enemies, from her sickness or from herself. She curses her sick body, thinking that she could fight alongside Floramon if she was healthy. However, Floramon wants not the power to fight, but the power to heal Saki, and Saki realizes that what she wants is the power to heal herself and others, to go forward. This desire causes Floramon to evolve into Ceresmon Medium.
|Shinonome Kaito & Dracumon||Any time from Part 9 onward||All routes except Harmony||Beelzebumon||
Kaito and Dracumon attempt to protect a Palmon from a Mega Seadramon, but are incapable of beating it without a plan. Kaito refuses Palmon's request to leave him behind, as as Miu cares about him and he does not want her to suffer again. Kaito wishes for power to protect Miu and what she cared about, and to crush his enemies; Dracumon asks him to believe in him and wish as hard as he could, and said wish causes Dracumon to evolve into Beelzebumon.
|Shinonome Miu & Shakomon||Any time from Part 9 onward||All routes except Harmony||Marin Angemon||
Miu acts as a decoy for a particularly powerful Blue Meramon to prevent it from attacking the others, including some Baby Digimon that they rescued earlier, but Shakomon is unable to defeat it. With her wish to be the one that protects everyone else instead of being the one being protected in mind, she asks Shakomon to give her even more of her power. Her unwavering desire to protect others causes Shakomon to evolve into Marin Angemon.
|Tominaga Ryō & Kunemon||Any time from Part 10 onward||Truth||Bancho Stingmon||
As Ryō and Kunemon talk about Ryō's wish to save the world for Kunemon's sake, they're attacked by a Delumon. While Ryō encouraged Kunemon to keep fighting, Kunemon wanted Ryō to run away, but he refused to leave him behind. In anger, Ryō admits how much Kunemon means to him, and swears to make their enemies pay for hurting both Kunemon and many others, as well as to protect Kunemon's world. As Kunemon started glowing in a red aura, Ryō realized how their hearts were becoming one, and Kunemon evolved into Bancho Stingmon.
|Kayama Shuuji & Lopmon||Any time from Part 10 onward||Truth||Cherubimon (Virtue)||
Takuma found Shuuji and Lopmon fighting a Gigadramon in the woods. Shuuji told Takuma to go back and get the rest, as they wouldn't be able to beat it alone. Seeing how they had no other way to win, Shuuji decided he'd take the Gigadramon down with him, and asked Lopmon to help him in the path he chose for himself, one fitting for his role as the leader, even if he knew it was selfish and self-righteous. His righteousness then allowed Lopmon to evolve into Cherubimon (Virtue).
|Minase Miyuki & Renamon||Part 10||All routes except Truth||Kyubimon||After separating Aoi (in the Wrathful route)/Kaito (in the Harmony route)/both (in the Moral route) from Takuma and the others in order to turn the latter into sacrifices for the Master, Renamon evolves on their own into Kyubimon.|
|Minase Miyuki & Renamon||Part 10||All routes except Truth||Taomon||Renamon evolves on their own into Taomon, once again in order to turn Takuma and the rest into sacrifices for the Master.|
|Truth||Renamon's rage at failing to kill Akiharu, who they viewed as a traitor to Miyuki, and their wish for power no one could match, causes them to evolve on their own into Taomon.|
|Minase Miyuki & Renamon||Part 10||N/A||Sakuyamon||After Renamon is beaten by Takuma and the others, the Master reappears, possessing Minase Miyuki. Realizing he had no intention of letting Miyuki go, Renamon cries out to Miyuki's heart, temporarily bringing her back. Angry at the Master for treating her like a belonging of his or a toy, Renamon transforms everyone's feelings into power and Warp Evolves into Sakuyamon.|
|Professor & Garurumon||Part 11||Moral||Metal Garurumon||Garurumon (as Were Garurumon) collapses from his wounds while fighting the remnants of Piemon's gang, led by Pinochimon, and later realizes that his wounds are preventing him from mowing as he wishes. The Professor confesses to him how much it pained him to have left the world without him, and how he would understands being hated for it, but refuses to do so again because Were Garurumon had listened to him back at the altar. This makes Were Garurumon finally accept that the Professor was indeed Minase Akiharu, his partner, and he not only learns that Akiharu had not left him behind willingly, but remembers that their bond made him stronger: something Pinochimon, who does not trust humans, could never understand. Their rekindled bond causes Were Garurumon into Metal Garurumon, but his wounds and tiredness caused him to devolve into Gabumon after the battle.|
|Truth||After the first trial from Qinglongmon, Garurumon was too tired to keep fighting alone for his final trial. While the Professor wanted to stop him, Garurumon asked him to believe in him so they could save Miyuki. Said trust allowed Garurumon to evolve into Metal Garurumon. Since he used too much power in the fight, he devolved to Gabumon afterwards.|
|Shibuya Aoi & Labramon||Part 11||Wrathful||Plutomon
|When both she and Labramon were mortally wounded by Piemon, Aoi's desperate wish to live and her trauma after Saki's death materializes in a black light that emanates from their hands touching each other. Labramon's energy flows into Aoi, and they both Dark Evolve together into Plutomon. As Plutomon, Aoi desires for everything to become one with her so for the sake of peace and harmony.|
|Momotsuka Takuma & Agumon
Minase Akiharu & Garurumon
|Part 11||Moral||Omegamon||After Akiharu and Renamon fail to break Miyuki free from the Master (with whom they were fused together as Miyuki (Kenzoku)) and Renamon dies protecting Akiharu, Saki, Aoi and Miu want to run away, while Minoru and Kaito want to stay and fight, reckless as it may be. Takuma, meanwhile, is unable to decide until Agumon tells him to rely on him, and that he will make sure that Takuma has nothing to worry about or fear. Takuma realizes this meant Agumon thought they could save Miyuki and the world, and Agumon wants to make those wishes come true. Gabumon tells Akiharu likewise. Their resolves restored, Takuma swears to save Miyuki and the world, while Akiharu acknowledges that they have no choice but to do it. Takuma's intense emotions cause Agumon to feel a heat inside himself, and Akiharu's resolve invokes an unfamiliar mix of many feelings within Gabumon. Knowing their current forms are unable to take those emotions and that they must become one, Agumon and Gabumon fuse together into Omegamon, whose strength restores everyone's resolve.|
The concept of Digimon evolution was introduced in the original Digital Monster virtual pet series. All Digimon undergo evolution through up to five Evolution Stages, ending in Perfect. What a Digimon evolves into, and whether it is able to evolve, depends on several different criteria based on Evolution Stage:
- Baby I to Baby II: Automatically occurs after approximately 60 minutes of real time have passed since the Baby I Digimon hatched.
- Baby II to Child: Each Baby II Digimon can evolve into any of the device's Child Digimon depending on how many care mistakes have been made in raising it. Evolving into Child generally occurs within 20 and 44 hours after the Baby II Digimon has evolved from Baby I.
- Child to Adult: Each Child Digimon can evolve into one of four Adult Digimon, depending on four factors: number of care mistakes made, how many times it have been given training, how often it has been overfed, and how many times its sleep has been interrupted. If the Child Digimon has sustained 20+ care mistakes or injuries, it will not evolve into Adult. Evolving into Adult generally occurs within 20 and 44 hours after the Child Digimon has evolved from Baby II. All models of the Digital Monster feature one "dud" Adult Digimon that is evolved into when the Digimon does not meet the criteria of the other Adult evolution options (respectively: Numemon, Vegimon, Scumon, Nanimon, and Raremon).
- Adult to Perfect: All Adult Digimon are bound by the same requirements to evolve to Perfect: having fought a minimum of 15 battles, with a minimum win ratio of 80%. Each Adult can only evolve into one particular Perfect. Evolving into Perfect is not guaranteed; if it does occur, it generally occurs within 44 and 124 hours after the Adult Digimon has evolved from Child.
Unlike later virtual pets and other Digimon products, the Digimon that can be evolved into are generally rather random and have no real link to each other (similarities in species or element, etc.)
The Digimon Pendulum virtual pet series introduces three important new evolution concepts, all of which became standard for both subsequent virtual pets and the franchise as a whole: the Ultimate Evolution Stage, Jogress Evolution, and Fields. Each version of the Digimon Pendulum is themed around one Field, so almost all featured Digimon within each have some elemental or species trait in common. Evolution requirements are otherwise similar to those of the Digital Monster series.
- Baby I to Baby II: Automatically occurs after approximately 60 minutes of real time have passed since the Baby I Digimon hatched.
- Baby II to Child: Each Baby II Digimon can evolve into any of the device's Child Digimon depending on how many care mistakes have been made in raising it. Evolving into Child generally occurs within 6 and 12 hours after the Baby II Digimon has evolved from Baby I.
- Child to Adult: Each Child Digimon can evolve into one of several Adult Digimon, depending on two factors: number of care mistakes made, and how many times it have been given training. If the Child Digimon has sustained 20+ care mistakes, illnesses or injuries, it will not evolve into Adult. Evolving into Adult generally occurs within 20 and 32 hours after the Child Digimon has evolved from Baby II.
- Adult to Perfect: Adult Digimon become able to evolve into one particular Perfect Digimon if they meet a minimum set of criteria: minimum win ratio of 40%, particpating in a minimum number of battles, being given training a minimum number of times, and making as few care mistakes as possible. Higher win ratios improve the odds of being able to evolve to Perfect. Evolving to Perfect is not guaranteed; if it does occur, it generally occurs within 60 and 76 hours after the Adult Digimon has evolved from Child.
Alternatively, Digimon may undergo Jogress Evolution to evolve into certain Perfect Digimon.
- Perfect to Ultimate: Certain Perfect Digimon become able to evolve into Ultimate Digimon if they meet a minimum set of criteria: minimum win ratio of 60%, and no care mistakes have been made. Evolving to Ultimate is not guaranteed; if it does occur, it generally occurs within 68 and 86 hours after the Perfect Digimon has evolved from Adult.
Alternatively, Digimon may undergo Jogress Evolution to evolve into certain Ultimate Digimon.
In the Digimon Pendulum, Jogress Evolution works based on the participating Digimon's attributes. Jogressing together two Digimon of a particular combination of attributes will result in each participating Digimon evolving into an appropriate Digimon from their respective virtual pet's roster. The actual identity of the particpating Digimon generally does not matter, with one exception: Jogressing War Greymon and Metal Garurumon in the Digimon Pendulum ZERO will form Omegamon.
The Digimon Pendulum Progress introduces time of day as a determiner of what a Digimon will evolve into: training the Digimon in morning, mid-day or evening results in different evolutions. Evolution lines are much freer, and excluding cases where Jogress Evolution is required, any Digimon on the device can evolve into any other Digimon of the next Evolution Stage as long as it meets the evolution criteria.
- Baby I to Baby II: Automatically occurs after approximately 60 minutes of real time have passed since the Baby I Digimon hatched.
- Baby II to Child: Each Baby II Digimon can evolve into any of the device's Child Digimon depending on what time of day it is trained in.
- Child to Adult: Each Child Digimon can evolve into any of the device's Adult Digimon, depending on two factors: what time of day it is trained in, and how many care mistakes have been made in raising it.
- Adult to Perfect: Each Adult Digimon can evolve into any of the device's Perfect Digimon (excluding Jogress exclusives), depending on three factors: what time of day it is trained in, how many care mistakes have been made in raising it, and how many battles it has participated in.
Alternatively, Digimon may undergo Jogress Evolution to evolve into certain Perfect Digimon.
- Perfect to Ultimate: Each Perfect Digimon can evolve into any of the device's Ultimate Digimon (excluding Jogress exclusives) if it meets their respective combinations of these minimum requirements: what time of day it is trained in, how many care mistakes have been made in raising it, how many times its sleep has been disturbed, how many battles it has won, and its battle win ratio.
Alternatively, Digimon may undergo Jogress Evolution to evolve into certain Perfect Digimon.
The rules of Jogress Evolution are somewhat different from the Digimon Pendulum. This time, players are required to Jogress together specific species of Digimon to get a particular Digimon, rather than accepting any Digimon of a given attribute. Many of the Digimon required come not only from other models of Pendulum Progress, but even from the D-Scanner. Also, some Digimon who are obtainable through Jogressing can also be evolved into by non-Jogress ways.
The Digimon Accel series features the DNA mechanic: collectible points that represent eight Digimon species archetypes that the player feeds to their Digimon to direct its evolution. From the Child stage onwards, the majority of evolution options require specific combinations of DNA types and quantities of points to be fed to evolve into that form. (The only exceptions are one "dud" evolution option per Evolution Stage per version, which are evolved into when the requirements for other Digimon are not met.) Feeding DNA costs 5 DP per DNA point consumed.
Aside from the evolution from Baby I to Baby II, the passing of real time is no longer a factor in a Digimon's ability to evolve.
- Baby II to Child: Each Baby II Digimon can evolve into any of the device's Child Digimon depending on the DNA that has been fed to it.
- Child to Adult: Each Child Digimon can evolve into one of several Adult Digimon, depending on the DNA that has been fed to it. The amounts of DNA required to evolve into each Adult differ between Children.
- Adult to Perfect: Each Adult Digimon can evolve into one of several Perfect Digimon, depending on the DNA that has been fed to it. The amounts of DNA required to evolve into each Perfect differs between Adults. An estimated minimum win ratio of 50% is required to evolve to Perfect.
Alternatively, certain Adult Digimon may undergo Jogress Evolution to evolve into certain Perfect Digimon.
- Perfect to Ultimate: Each Perfect Digimon can evolve into one of several Ultimate Digimon, depending on the DNA that has been fed to it. The amounts of DNA required to evolve into each Ultimate differs between Perfects. Depending on the Ultimate Digimon, a minimum win ratio of between 60% and 80% is required to evolve to Ultimate.
There are also several special ways of evolving to Ultimate:
- Certain Perfect Digimon may undergo Jogress Evolution to evolve into certain Ultimate Digimon.
- In the Justice Genome, Evil Genome, and Nature Genome versions, playing multiplayer battles with Digimon Pendulum X devices adds points to the Accel's X-Antibody gauge. When this gauge reaches 20 points, any Digimon from the Child to Ultimate levels evolves into a Royal Knight X-Antibody Digimon. Each of these three versions has a different Digimon. This feature is absent from the Ultimate Genome version, which instead uses connectivity with the Digimon Mini to unlock the DORUmon family.
- In the Ultimate Genome version, there are four collectible items which, when used, trigger evolution into exclusive Ultimate Digimon.
The Digimon Accel also features the Blast Mode mechanic. When the player's Digimon is Perfect or Ultimate, if the player scores within a specific range on the RPM gauge before a battle, their Digimon will undergo Blast Evolution into a "Blast Mode" version of themself, signified by a changed appearance in their sprites. This consumes 30 DP each time. Being in Blast Mode doubles the Digimon's attack power and replaces their Hyper Hit attack with a One-Hit KO attack.
- Main article: Digital Monster Card Game#Evolution Phase
In the Digital Monster Card Game, every Digimon card of Level IV (Adult) or higher lists a specific set of Evolution Requirements that includes the Digimon (usually 2-3) that it can be evolved from, and the required costs ("Evolution Requirements") to evolve each Digimon into the new card. Once every turn, players have an opportunity to evolve their current Digimon. This is done in their turn's Preparation Phase by playing the Digimon card to be evolved into their Evolution Box, face-down, and then playing all of the stated costs for that card in the Evolution Requirements Box.
The types of Evolution Requirements that are asked for depend on the card's level.
- Level IV: For each Digimon to evolve from, the card will typically list a combination of ● ("Regular Growth", played oriented horizontally) and × ("Irregular Growth", played oriented vertically). This means that, for the total number of symbols listed, you draw that many cards from your Net Ocean and, without looking at their faces, play them face-down in the Evolution Requirements box in the right combination.
- Perfect and Ultimate: These cards typically have one of two Evolution Requirements:
- A "Winning Percentage!" Option Card. There are three "Winning Percentage!" types - 40%, 60%, and 80% - and, as stated in these cards' Effects, the type listed by the card is the minimum winning percentage that can be used. That is, you can use a "Winning Percentage: 80%" card to evolve into a Digimon whose Evolution Requirement asks for "Winning Percentage: 40%!" or "Winning Percentage: 60%!" The effects also require the user to send one card from their hand to the Dark Area (discard it) after evolution is completed.
- Jogress Evolution. The card will list several pairs of Digimon who can be Jogressed into the card, and in each case, either one of those Digimon must currently in the Digimon box, while the other is played in the Evolution Requirements Box.
On occasion, Evolution Requirements will mandate that a given Digimon card can only be evolved from a Digimon card that belongs to a specific Field, Attribute, or Level. For example, Starter Ver. 6 mostly features Digimon cards that belong to the Virus Busters Field, and many of these require that they be evolved specifically from Digimon cards that also belong to the Virus Busters field, instead of any other field.
There are Option cards that can circumvent standard Evolution Requirements, such as "Aim for the Strongest Evolution!" (St-56), which can be used instead of all other Evolution Requirements to evolve a Digimon. However, some Digimon cards have a special ability that prevents ignoring Evolution Requirements like this.
Some cards have Appearance Requirements or Fusion Requirements, instead of Evolution Requirements. Fusion Requirements work similarly to some Evolution Requirements and ask for specific Option Cards, such as cards that feature Digimentals or Legendary Spirits, to fuse with the player's current Digimon. Appearance Requirements have unique effects that sometimes do not require a specific current Digimon at all.
In the Digimon Card Game, evolution is determined by card color. Any Digimon of a given color can evolve into any other Digimon of a higher Evolution Stage that shares its color. Certain cards, such as BT3-027 Paildramon, also allow for evolution from another color in addition to the card's own color, increasing the amount of Digimon that can evolve into them. Furthermore, some Digimon can evolve from Digimon of the same level (for example, BT5-029 Were Garurumon: Sagittarius Mode can evolve from a Level 5 Digimon like itself).
While Digimon can be played from the hand regardless of their level, evolving them properly gives some benefits over just playing a card from the hand:
- Evolving a Digimon has significantly lower Memory cost than directly playing it. The cost is even lower if evolving from a Digimon of the same level, whenever possible.
- Upon evolving a Digimon, the player that evolved must draw a card, increasing their options. This can be done as many times in a turn as the player's Memory, deck and hand allow.
- Many Digimon cards also have an Evolution Base Effect, which is a special effect that the card passes on to any Digimon cards that subsequently evolve from it, so as a Digimon evolves, they can acquire more Evolution Base Effects.
Digimon cards can normally only evolve from other Digimon cards. However, cards that depict characters from Digimon Frontier allow Tamer cards to evolve into Digimon as well. Some Hybrid Digimon (such as BT4-011 Agnimon) have effects that treat Tamer cards as Level 3 Digimon cards. Some Tamer cards that feature the Chosen Children of Frontier even have their own effects that allow them to evolve into specific Hybrid Digimon, such as BT7-085 Kanbara Takuya, whose effect lets it evolve into Kaiser Greymon by treating itself as a Level 5 Digimon card in the process.
ST-9 and ST-10 introduce Jogress Evolution to the game. Digimon who possess the Jogress Evolution keyword (such as ST10-06 Mastemon) can be evolved in one of two ways, either through the normal evolution method, or by stacking cards that fit specific requirements (in ST10-06 Mastemon's case, a Yellow Level 5 Digimon and a Purple Level 5 Digimon), and then stacking the Jogress Evolved card itself on top of them, for no Memory cost. Digimon may have extra effects that trigger if Jogress Evolved, making it more valuable as an evolution method despite the cost of using two Digimon cards instead of one.