Niantic has been working harder than anyone anticipated them to be in order to ring in the new year in style. The developers at Pokemon Go have been pushing their new monthly Community Day event hard with marketing and now it appears that the results are finally matching the effort put toward the actual promotion. Pokemon Go recently saw their next Community Day Go live on February 24th and fans around the globe were ecstatic with what they got to do.
For those not in the know, Pokemon Go introduced the Community Day event as a way to incentivize people to play the game and get out and try to have more activity. Community Days happen around the globe every single month and the event starts and ends on a specific timeslot depending on where you are at. Niantic releases these specific schedules by way of their social media so you can quickly and easily find where and when you should be out and about. For the February Community Day, the event was all about Dratini — one of the rarer and more satisfying-to-catch Pokemon in the entire game.
Dratini is a Dragon-type Pokemon that is typically farmed in order to evolve a Dragonite, one of the best battling Pokemon in the game. For this Community Day event, Niantic decided to feature Dratini. As a result, Dratini spawned in swarms with increased stardust output and the ability to learn a special, Community Day exclusive, move known as Draco Meteor. This was, hands up, the quickest way to get yourself a Dragonite that the game has ever offered and if you missed out you will likely be kicking yourself over it for awhile. During the event, it was also revealed that shiny Dratini were out and about in the game world which only increased the frenzy of trainers trying to get out and capture the rare Pokemon.
While Community Day was a success, many trainers are still focused on getting their hands on Rayquaza — the Gen 3 Dragon Pokemon that is currently appearing in Gym Battles until mid-March. Rayquaza will have had a very limited run in Raid battles so if you want to stay competitive and complete your dex, you might want to get out and start trying to get him in your Pokedex. Niantic is also releasing the Pokemon Go Legendary Week which brings back Kyogre and Groudon for trainers that missed them the first time around.
Niantic surely has a full plate on their hands as gamers eagerly await each and every new addition to the game. Niantic has been developing their augmented reality game, Pokemon Go, for the better part of a year and a half and they are showing no signs of slowing down — despite taking on another huge title, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite. Fans of Pokemon Go got to get their hands on a variety of Legendary Pokemon this year, including all of the legendary dogs and legendary birds, and now Niantic is bringing out another fan-favorite: Groudon.
Ho-Oh was the most recent legendary Pokemon to be released through the raid-system but that is now no longer the case. Groudon is the first Legendary Pokemon to be added to the game from Gen 3 and you’ll need one heck of a team in order to capture him. All legendaries are only available as Raid Battles at your nearby gyms. In order to get your hands on a Groudon, you have to be in the right place at the right time and with the right partners. Right now, it is announced that Groudon will be available until January 15th, 2018. You have to be looking at gyms at 1PM PT in order to get the chance to battle him.
While Groudon is making the headlines as the newest legendary Pokemon, he is far from the only new addition to the game. The developers at Niantic have been busy trying to put together some more immersion improving systems into their title. Most recently, Niantic released a dynamic weather system that allows trainers to capture Pokemon based on the weather in their particular part of the world. The weather system should have a huge impact on how trainers battle, train, and capture their Pokemon. Certain weather elements will bring out certain Pokemon while others might get a type-advantage during battles.
With so much activity going on to bring 2017 to a close, we can only imagine that Niantic has many more ideas to come. Time to go capturing, trainers!
Although the game has waned from being popular among mainstream news cycles, “Pokémon Go” will be offering its players the chance to capture another legendary Pokémon. The blazing phoenix-like Ho-Oh will now make appearance during raid battles., Niantic’s go-to method for bringing players in touch with legendary Pokémon like Mewtwo and the trio of birds that serve as mascots for the game’s three teams.
While raid battles are group encounters that have up to 20 players teaming up to tackle one super-powerful Pokémon, the mention of a Ho-Oh raid seems relatively unforeseen. Those unfamiliar with Niantic’s social media presence or who fail to keep up with the screen dedicated to sensing raids would easily miss this news. As befits a creature of its majesty and scarcity, raid encounters with the blazing bird of legend will not be around for very long. To be specific, Ho-Oh raids will only be operable from now until the 12th day of December this year.
Any player seeking to capture Ho-Oh during a raid must first obtain a Raid Pass item within the game. This item can be acquired either from going to a gym or by purchasing a Premium Raid Pass from the in-app store. Once a raid battle begins, all participating players must defeat a “Raid Boss” within a 5 minute time limit. Upon defeating the Raid Boss players can see a Pokémon egg that will hatch once the 5 minute counter reaches 0:00. In addition to the chance to get rare and unique pokemon, players can also receive free items like Potions, Berries and “Technical Machines.” Raid battles were one feature added to the game during a massive update in June 2017.
Pokémon Go’s inception can be traced back to a partnership April Fools’ Day joke in 2014 between Nintendo, The Pokémon Company and Google Earth. After several test runs in limited regions, the first build of the complete game was released in July of 2016.
Just over a year ago, masses of people suddenly descended on some of the most random and obscure locations, deliriously excited about something that onlookers were at a loss to understand. What they were witnessing was the release of a brand new type of video game – one that took players out from in front of their TV’s and got them interacting with the world around them. Since then, the numbers of players have declined, but millions of die hard fans still remain.
While there have been rumors of several similar games scheduled to be released in the last year, including one based on the wildly popular Harry Potter series, none has materialized or gained anywhere near the massive following of Pokémon Go. As a result, Niantic closes off it’s first year as the completely undisputed champion of interactive “real world” video games.
On July 22, they will celebrate this crowning acheivement with a massive POGO celebration to take place in Grant Park, located in Chicago, IL. During the festival, Niantic will coordinate challenges taking place in Chicago with challenges that players around the world can participate in, based on challenges chosen by the players in Chicago. A final challenge will take place in the evening on the 26th, with a special reward being offered for completing the challenge. Rumors abound that the much-awaited legendary Pokémon will finally be released to anxious players around the world.
Aside from the initial release of Pokémon Go, this may be the first time that video game players all around the globe are all participating in playing one video game at one time, making it a truly global event. Given the stunning success that Pokémon Go has experienced, it is unlike that they will maintain their stranglehold on the market for this type of video game for long, but for the moment, they are basking in their success. In August, Niantic will also be hosting special events throughout Europe, as well as being part of a week-long celebration in Japan in August.
In the summer of 2016 ‘Pokemon Go’ released to almost hysteria inducing levels of popularity. The game skyrocketed up the iOS sales charts and soon everybody and their brother was outside trying to catch the rarest Pokemon. People realized early on that the gym system was struggling and ever since then the developers at Niantic have been trying to get it just right. Changes seem to be in full effect a year later and Niantic seems to be doing their best to make the new Gym Raid system part of their core gameplay mechanic. A recent update made it easier than ever to fight to hold on to gyms.
In just the past few months we saw an update to the gym system that introduced the concept of Raids. Rather than just stacking your strongest Pokemon into a gym and holding it forever, Niantic implemented a system where you could pool Pokemon together to fight in strategically timed group battles. When you station your Pokemon at a gym you can also stop by and feed the Pokemon at that gym from your berry pouch, strengthening and healing them to continue fighting for your team. This was a neat update but it meant that you had to constantly go check on your Pokemon while they were at a gym. If you had a lot of Pokemon out and about this became an obvious issue.
In order to address these obvious issues, the developers at Niantic made it possible to care for and nurture your Gym Pokemon without actually having to go see them in person. This patch, though small, makes a fundamental difference in the realm of holding gyms for prolonged periods of time. Hopefully these small updates lead to larger improvements in the future as Pokemon Go inches toward becoming the game we had hoped it would be.