Niantic Tagged Articles RSS Feed | Niantic RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network Pokemon GO Introduces New Legendary Pokemon Tue, 18 Dec 2018 22:56:01 -0500 William R. Parks

While Pokemon GO's recently added Trainer Battles may be keeping some players occupied, Niantic continues to add new PvE experiences to its mobile game. One such offering has just been made available in the form of a new Legendary Pokemon, Heatran.

Heatran is a Fire- and Steel-type Pokemon, and brave trainers can now battle it as Pokemon GO's newest Raid Boss. It is available for capture until January 15 at 4pm EST.

This new Legendary Pokemon is a fierce opponent, with 251 Attack, 213 Defense, 209 Stamina, and a Max CP of 3,754. As such, it is recommended that high level players tackle the encounter in groups of three or more while lower level trainers should have a squad of at least eight players.

Furthermore, players should be aware of the weather before they take on Heatran, as it is boosted by sun and snow. These weather effects will increase its capture CP to a maximum of 2,681 — a significant increase from the 2,145 maximum capture CP of an un-boosted Heatran.

When selecting Pokemon to battle against this new Legendary, it is important to note that it has a double weakness to Ground-types, and it is also vulnerable to Fighting- and Water-type Pokemon. This makes Groudon (with Mud Shot and Earthquake) and Rhyperior (with Mud-Slap and Earthquake) the premiere counters to Heatran.

Rhydon, Swampert, Golem, and Kyogre comprise the next tier of suitable counters, and trainers without access to any of these Pokemon can look towards other Ground- and Fighting-type Pokemon. However, it is not recommended to engage Heatran in a small group, or when boosted, without one of the aforementioned counters.

With the addition of Heatran, Pokemon GO receives yet another Gen 4 Pokemon. These Pokemon were featured in Pokemon Diamond and Pearl, and they have been slowly introduced into the mobile game since October.

Unfortunately, Heatran's move set leaves something to be desired, however, this new Raid Boss is a great opportunity for players to add a Legendary to their stables. Perhaps its utility will be confined to PvP, but many players are certain to be happy just to have some new PvE content to explore.

More details on tackling the Heatran encounter can be found on Pokemon GO Hub.

Augmented Reality Update for Pokemon Go Wed, 20 Dec 2017 13:01:41 -0500 Sarah Elliman

Niantic and The Pokemon Company have announced today that they are continuing to improve the augmented reality aspect of Pokemon Go, using the iOS ARKit to capture the magic of Pokemon. The company had already been using ARKit, but they are now implementing AR+ to create more realistic Pokemon than ever before.

This feature is exclusive to those who own iPhones or iPads and will include a huge overhaul on the augmented Pokemon that you can capture. Perspective, size, and visuals will all change with this update, making the Pokemon on your screen look more realistic than ever before.

Pokemon will now be more realistic in terms of size and look different with regard to your perspective. They are also now fixed in a certain place, meaning you will be able to get up close and move around the Pokemon while still seeing every tiny detail.

Furthermore, this technical overhaul will include Pokemon having a greater sense of awareness, meaning if you get too close too fast, they’re likely to disappear. The awareness bar will allow you to see if that Pokemon is likely to flee; it also means that if you’re careful, you can receive the Expert Handler bonus as well. The Expert Handler bonus is completely new to the AR+ mode and gives you the opportunity to earn even more XP and Stardust. In addition, if you catch a Pokemon while near it, you can gain Great and Excellent Throw bonuses alongside the new bonus.

 Pokemon Go still boasts an enormous player base and has seen a total of 750 million downloads since its inception in 2016. Even critics of the game are beginning to turn due to the new generation and subsequent updates that are being released by Niantic and The Pokemon Company.

The AR+ update is available starting today and can be downloaded by those using an iPhone 6 or newer (or users of iOS 11).


What do you think of the new Pokemon Go update? If you're not still playing, will you return to the game? Let us know in the comments below.

Pokemon Go Update Adds Weather, Parties, and Storage Fri, 08 Dec 2017 14:13:27 -0500 Ainyan

Niantic has announced an upcoming patch to its popular mobile ARG, Pokémon Go, which will release 50 new Pokémon from the Hoenn region and add a dynamic weather system to the game. In a recent update on their website, Niantic offered more details about the upcoming weather effects system, as well as two more inclusions: Battle Parties and Increased Pokémon Storage.

In the upcoming update, Pokémon Go will begin to reflect local weather conditions, including sunny days, rain, and snow. During these weather events, certain Pokémon will be more likely to appear. These Pokémon will yield bonus Stardust when captured and are more likely to be more powerful than their normal counterparts. Additionally, moves will also be affected by the appropriate weather; Fire-types will have more potency during sunny days, while Water-type moves will be more powerful when rain is falling.

In addition to the weather update, Niantic is offering players the ability to create Battle Parties, preset teams of up to six Pokémon that trainers can switch to when forming up for a raid. These Battle Parties will allow trainers who frequent Raid Battles to keep sets of Pokémon to battle each of the raid bosses, allowing for easy switching. Players should note that this feature is in beta and that, for now, sets will be saved per device. Niantic has stated that they are planning to allow parties to be saved by account in a future release.

The third update announced by Niantic is an increase in available Pokémon storage. With the introduction of Generation III, Niantic plans to increase the maximum collection size from 1,000 Pokémon to 1,500. Additionally, the base collection size will be increased by 50, so all trainers will find they can capture more Pokémon.

What do you think of the changes coming to Pokémon Go? Will the release of Generation III get you back out on the streets to Catch 'Em All? Will the new systems add to gameplay or create unnecessary clutter instead? Answer in the comments below!

Pokémon Go released on July 6, 2016 on iOS and Android mobile devices. Gameplay requires an active internet connection. 

Mewtwo Coming to Pokemon Go Raid Battles Soon! Mon, 14 Aug 2017 10:55:11 -0400 Kieran Desmond

It's been a little over a year since the Pokemon Go phenomenon began, and various legendary Pokemon have made appearances in-game. But finally, one of the most iconic Pokemon of all time is making his way to this mobile Pokemon game -- Mewtwo.

Mewtwo has made his inaugural appearance as a Raid boss at the Pokemon Go Stadium event taking place in Yokohama, Japan. Many players were able to successfully capture the Legendary Psychic Pokemon during the event, and Niantic revealed that he will soon be available for Pokemon Go players worldwide. According to an official statement:

"In the coming weeks, you too will have the opportunity to battle and catch Mewtwo with the new Exclusive Raid Battle feature.”

This new Raid feature operates slightly differently than what players are used to. Instead of simply joining a raid battle, players will be need to be invited. To receive an invitation, you must have successfully completed a raid “recently” at the Gym where the Exclusive Raid Battle is to be held.

The post does not specify how recent players need to have defeated the Raid Boss in order to qualify.

In addition to this announcement, Niantic has also decided to celebrate the thousands of limited-time-only Legendary Pokemon players have defeated by giving everyone another shot at catching them -- this includes Articuno, Moltres, Zapdos, and Lugia. All four will be available to battle and capture from August 14 through August 31. So you’d better get out there and catch ‘em all before they pass you by!

Stay tuned to GameSkinny for more Pokemon Go news as it develops! 

Pokemon Go: 1 Year Ago vs. Now Thu, 13 Jul 2017 14:51:34 -0400 Zantallion

Pokemon is an evergreen franchise. Throughout the series' 20+ year history, it's proven time and time again that it's a juggernaut in the gaming industry. With it's fun mechanics and beloved creatures, Pokemon is one of the most iconic gaming franchises bar none.

So when everyone's favorite Pocket Monsters came to mobile devices in Pokemon Go, we all knew it was going to be big. But no one knew just how big it would end up being.

But now that we're a year into the Pokemon Go phenomenon, we have to ask -- has Pikachu's magic touch allowed this mobile experience to compete with the main franchise? Does it have the same longevity and lasting impact that games like Sun and Moon  have had? To answer that question, we'll need to take a look at how Go and its community have evolved over the game's first year.

The (Rocky) Beginning of a Phenomenon

Pokemon Go's story began way back in 2014, with a collaboration between Nintendo and Google which at first took the form of the April Fool's Day prank -- the Google Maps Pokemon Challenge. This fun little diversion saw players scouring the online Google Maps pages to catch tiny sprite versions of 721 different Pokemon. Though the idea started as a simple collaborative prank, sparked the idea of Pokemon Go that would eventually grow into the game we know today. 

Pokemon Go's pre-release period was surprisingly calm, considering how turbulent its actual release date was. Fans were excited for the game, but few could have predicted just how much of an event it would be. There were occasional debates about whether the game was going to feature only the original 151 Pokemon, whether or not Shiny Pokemon would be available, and the occasional disgruntled fan complaining that it wasn't a new main series title. Not even the Pokemon fanbase knew what was coming.

To say Pokemon Go's launch period was turbulent would be an understatement. The sheer excitement, the crowds of people out chasing their favorite virtual creatures, all the videos and photos of people was a lot. In first few days after the game's launch, you couldn't walk down the block without seeing people flicking Pokeballs on their phones to snag their latest buddy. In just a few days, the world was enraptured by Pokemon again, as if it were 1996 all over again. People couldn't get enough.

Niantic, Pokemon Go's creator, had dreadfully underestimated the magnitude of what they were dealing with. As the game went live, they scrambled to try and keep servers running, get a foothold in social media, and fix some nasty launch bugs. Alas, they were understaffed and unprepared, and so those bugs continued to plague early PoGo for quite a while.

Early on, people didn't care. They were all too busy chasing that new shadow on their radar, and the novelty was still fresh. It wasn't until later that people started to notice the chips in PoGo's paint.

A Downward Turn

What really kicked off the turnaround on Pokemon Go was Niantic's odd decision to remove the tracking system. What was once a fun way to track down the Pokemon closest to you with a decreasing footstep counter became a screen that simply told you "Hey these guys are near you somewhere."

For those in areas with tons of Pokestops, this was eventually fixed. But for those who weren't? The problem that still hasn't been addressed, a year later. All that's been done is a little grass texture has been added. Either way, it was the removal of the tracking system that kicked off criticism of the game and Niantic's treatment of it. After the tracking system got removed, criticism started ramping up, and the game's popularity started going down. 

One of the biggest issues with the game's continued popularity was Niantic's poor communication with its community. For the longest time, Niantic didn't have any social media presence -- meaning changes like the tracking removal came completely unannounced. For a long while, Niantic remained completely silent altogether. Even when the company did create social media accounts, it took those accounts a good amount of time to actually address any actual issues. And by the time they did, the damage had been done.

While the game was still popular, it was no longer the cultural phenomenon it started out as. When the game first launched, you used to be able to walk down the street and see tons of people playing and talking together. But after losing the tracking feature and getting increasingly fed up with Niantic's practices, it seemed that most players moved on -- with only a few stragglers still as open about their love for the game.

A Few Redeeming Qualities

For the most part, Go faded into the background for a while. Some people still played casually, but there were no stories of bodies being discovered by Go players, nor news articles about people quitting their jobs to play. It just became a quiet, casual thing to do while you were already out.

Some scattered events, like the different holiday Pikachus and type-centric events showed up -- but most of the changes were small. Even the new Pokestop-based tracking system, though it was cool, didn't do much to revive the community. So far, only two things have been big enough to give Go a bump in popularity have been the addition of Gen 2, and the more recent Gym/Raid Update.

Gen 2's addition caused a spike in people out on the street, but it was only temporary. Just as with the original 151, people caught all of the common Pokemon religiously for a while, before eventually getting their fill and only playing occasionally. However, the recent Gym Update seems to be having a bigger effect, mostly thanks to the ingenious Raid system.

With Raids, large groups of people are now regularly meeting up to take on Raid Bosses, once again making groups of Pokemon players a regular sight in big cities. Combined with the recent Ash Hat Pikachu event, it seems like Pokemon Go might finally be getting back in stride to get big again -- or at least find a more stable and happy player base.

It may never reach the same fervor that it enjoyed a year ago, but these latest events, and upcoming ones like Pokemon Go Fest Chicago, show that Pokemon Go is carving out a long-term niche for itself. Pokemon Go looks like it's here to stay.

So happy first birthday to Pokemon GO, and here's to many more! (And hopefully to Gen 3 sometime soon.)

Go Egg Hunting with Pokemon Go's Easter Event Thu, 13 Apr 2017 19:22:00 -0400 Glitchieetv

Nintendo has announced a new event for Pokemon Go to celebrate Easter. Dubbed the Eggstravaganza, the event is live now until April 20th. Hatching eggs will now be more profitable, XP earned is doubled and lucky eggs are extra lucky.

The egg hunt is on as 2 km eggs will now be hatching a larger variety of Pokemon during the event. In addition to that, rare hatches will be more common. 2km eggs will now hatch more Misdreavus, Remoraid, Togepi, Slugma, Pichu, Igglybuff, and Cleffa. 5km eggs will hatch more Grimer, Kabuto, Koffing, Lickitung, Omanyte, Porygon, Dunsparce, Girafarig, Yanma, Wobuffet, Sneasel, Shuckle, and Quilfish. Aerodactly, Lapras, Snorlax, Miltank, Scarmon, Chansey, Mareep, and Sudowoodo will hatch more frequently from their 10km eggs.

Eggs hatched will also give extra candy, perfect for an egg hunt. Lucky eggs are on sale in the shop and will give 4X XP when used. Get ready to walk, hatch and level up your Pokemon with the Eggstravaganza Pokemon Go event. Which Pokemon are you looking to hatch the most? Tell me in the comments below and stay tuned to GameSkinny for your Pokemon Go updates! 


Pokemon Go Water Festival Event Has Started Thu, 23 Mar 2017 05:58:14 -0400 tofuslayer

Niantic Labs announced that starting March 22nd at 1 pm PDT, Pokémon Go is celebrating a global Water Festival by giving trainers an opportunity to catch more Water-type Pokémon.

According to an update on the Pokémon Go website, trainers anywhere in the world are more likely to encounter Magikarp, Squirtle, Totodile, as well as their Evolutions. If you already have all of those Pokémon and their evolutions, there’s still more. If you explore areas where Water-type Pokémon typically dwell, you’ll have a better chance of encountering Water-type Pokémon that were originally discovered in the Johto region. The update also hinted that trainers may be more likely to encounter Lapras in these areas.

In addition, trainers will be able to access a new avatar wardrobe item, the Magikarp Hat, later today.

For trainers interested in capitalizing on these limited-time festivities, the Pokémon Go Water Festival celebration ends on March 29, 2017 at 1 pm PDT.

What Would Be Almost As Good As Pokemon GO? Lilo & Stitch GO! Tue, 21 Mar 2017 08:15:01 -0400 Jaleesa Mitchell

I watched a lot of great cartoons growing up: Kim Possible, Kids Next Door, The Fairly Oddparents, etc. Of course, Digimon and Pokémon were on that list as well. And with the release of Pokémon GO last July, it got me thinking: which other shows deserve a GO game?

Facebook gave me a ton of ideas, but my favorite by far is the idea of a Lilo & Stitch GO. I mean, think about it. There are 629 experiments in the world of Lilo & Stitch, and how fun would it be to capture them all in augmented reality?

And, much like with Pokémon, each experiment has a special ability -- like changing the seasons or shooting flames from their bodies.

But it's not just the idea that a Lilo & Stitch GO would give us the opportunity to hunt down all of Jumba's experiment, there would most likely be a decent sized fan base for the game. There are plenty of people who love the Disney cartoons from the late 90's/early 2000's, and Lilo & Stitch falls into that category. Plus, if it were released for the Windows Phone, as well as iOS and Android there would be a lot more traffic.

Better yet, release it through both augmented and virtual reality!

I mean, come on, the idea of Reuben throwing sandwiches as he tries to get away from his captors is definitely entertaining.

The point is, I think a Lilo & Stitch GO game would be really awesome. And, if you're a developer, you should totally look into making it a reality. (Here's a link to all the experiment names and abilities if you're up for the challenge.)

And who knows? If this were to become successful, the list of GO games could expand exponentially. It's worth a shot, right?

Everything You Need to Know About the Johto Update to Pokemon GO Fri, 17 Feb 2017 15:19:46 -0500 ESpalding

Players have been waiting quite a while for the "Gen 2" Johto Pokémon to reach Pokémon GO. And it's finally happened! Along with a whole host of new items and game features, 80 new Pokémon have now been added to the Pokédex.

Until today, players have only been able to see Togepi, Pichu, Magby, Elekid, Igglybuff, Smoochum and Cleffa from the new wave of Pokémon headed to the game. They have been available since December 2017 and can be hatched from any distance egg.

Baby Smoochum evolves into Jynx

So what else arrived in today's update?

2 New Berries

Nanab Berry

The Nanab Berry calms a Pokémon down and makes it less erratic. Instead of remaining stationary on the screen, some Pokémon will now move around the screen, trying to miss your Pokéballs. Even original Pokémon, such as Gastly, will now zigzag around the screen trying to throw you off. This berry will help prevent this.

Pinap Berry

The Pinap Berry will come in very handy as it will make a Pokémon drop more candies. Every been in that annoying situation when you need a couple more candies to evolve that semi-rare Pokémon? Well, make sure you feed this to the one you are catching and, BINGO! The Pokémon will now drop more than the usual 3 candies.

There is now a menu specifically for Berries and Pokéballs, so no more navigating to your inventory!

Special Evolution Items

The update has also added new items at Pokéstops, which can be used to evolve certain Pokémon into a second evolution. For example, instead of evolving a Slowpoke directly into a Slowbro you can use a King's Rock and it will evolve into a Slowking.

Customization Options

It is now possible for players to fully customize the appearance of their avatar. It has always been possible to change the way you look, but in a very generic sense. These new options allow you to buy items for gold. From giving your avatar a Pokémon-themed top hat to adding faction-specific hoodies, you can really make your avatar stand out!

Don't you look all la-de-dah with your top hat?!

New Pokemon 

Included in the 80 new Pokémon coming to the game are the Johto region's unique starter Pokémon. Pokémon GO now has the fire-type Cyndaquil, the grass-type Chikorita, and the water-type Totodile. Eevee fans will also be able to evolve Eevee into two new "eeveelutions", Espeon and Umbreon!

There are six legendary Pokémon in Gen 2, which are Celebi, Entei, Ho-Oh, Lugia, Raikou, and Suicune. But as the legendary Pokémon from Gen 1 aren't available yet, it is highly unlikely that players will be able to catch any of these.


Other items included in the patch notes include adding gender-specific variations of some Pokémon (think the male and female Nidoran), and a new night-mode map. Players will also benefit greater from catching evolved forms of Pokémon, as they are rewarded bonus candies for doing so.

With all the new content in Pokémon GO, you will surely be busy and see a surge in players around. What do you think of the new update? Which Pokémon are you looking forward to catching the most? Let us know below and make sure you check back with us for more Pokémon GO hints and tips!

Chinese Pokémon Fans May Miss Out on Global Hit, Niantic Potentially Loses Huge Audience. Wed, 11 Jan 2017 00:24:53 -0500 Bryant Pereira

The Chinese Government is evaluating augmented reality games like Pokémon Go for security reasons. The game that brought Pokémon fever back won’t be releasing in China until these possible risks are assessed.

Source: Credit George Etheredge/The New York Times
Reuters reports that the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television finds a “high level of responsibility to national security and the safety of people’s lives and property.”

The game focuses on exploring real-life neighborhoods and cities, and last year led a teenager to find a dead body in a river.

Until similar risks can be judged, the Chinese government will not allow fans to download and play the game, leaving Niantic out of millions of potential players.

Pokémon Go topped the mobile market charts for weeks straight, and although the number of daily users is dwindling, the craze that swept the nation will likely be remembered for years to come.

If the Chinese release of Pokémon Go resembles that of the US launch, this set-back blocks Niantic from gaining huge profits.

Another hurdle for the game is its usage of Google Maps services, which are currently blocked in China.

Pokémon Go released an update at the end of last year introducing a few Pokémon from the second generation.

Don't forget to log into Pokemon Go and get a limited edition Pikachu! Thu, 15 Dec 2016 12:40:26 -0500 Tobbpitt

People may be all excited about the new Pokemon added to Pokemon Go, but everybody in holiday spirit knows the real star of the game right now is the ever-festive Santa Pikachu. He's the cutest of the cute, and you get to keep him even after the event has ended.

Santa Pikachu's appearance seems to be Pokemon Go's only Christmas event, but it's better than nothing. He and his cute little hat will be available for Pokemon trainers to capture until December 29th. You'll notice any Pikachu you have captured before the event are not sporting the hat -- only those captured until the end of the event will be able to don the hat.

During the event the limited edition Santa Pikachu will replace all standard Pikachu on the field and can be seen in the Sightings tab just like any other Pikachu. There are even nests for this little guy, so keep an eye out if you want to farm them up even if they are identical to standard Pikachu in battle.

What's even better than a Santa Pikachu? How about an equally festive Santa Raichu? That's right! If you evolve the limited edition Pikachu they will evolve into Christmas-theme Raichu, with the same Santa hat and its signature Raichu pudge. You can also catch festive Raichu during this event.

The only way to get the limited edition Pikachu in Pokemon Go is to catch'em during this Christmas event, so get out there and capture those electric mice! And evolve a few, too -- because Raichu is the cutest. Any festive Pikachu (and evolved Santa Raichu) you capture will be retained after the event end. You know you want them!

Did Starbucks Just Leak a Big Pokemon Go Update? Tue, 06 Dec 2016 15:16:59 -0500 ESpalding

All Pokémon Go players are used to seeing cafes, restaurants and other places to eat pop up as PokéStops but in a recent leaked staff memo, it would appear that the majority US-based Starbucks coffee shops are going to become either gyms or PokéStops in an update due to appear at the end of this week. Not only that but a new Pokémon Go frappuccino is going to be hitting the high street - a regular vanilla frappuccino which has been "evolved with raspberry syrup and blackberries".

The following images have been leaked and detail not only the gym and PokéStop information but also to a new beverage which will be released in line with the update.

New update incoming!

Pokémon Go Frappuccino? Nice!

Everything a Starbucks barista needs to know!

It would appear that Starbucks have caught onto the fact that other businesses are making use of becoming a PokéStop and have decided to team up with developers Niantic to bring players / customers a little bit extra in-game and out.

Recently it has also been speculated that Gen 2 Pokémon will be going the game anytime soon so could this Starbucks update also include the next 100 Pokémon to catch? As stated in the leaked information above, this update largely affects the US so it could be that Gen 2 is going to be released first in the US.


The 7 Best Generation 2 Pokemon in Pokemon GO Sun, 04 Dec 2016 15:13:31 -0500 Autumn Fish


1.) Tyranitar


Stealing the spotlight at number one, we have the armored, pseudo-legendary Rock and Dark type, Tyranitar. With this Pokemon by your side, you could be virtually unstoppable. Its Attack stat is expected to be around as high as Ampharos's, which is totally nuts when you take its other stats into consideration. Its Defense should be even better than Attack, though not quite as insane as Steelix's. To top it all off, its Stamina is projected to be higher than anything else on this list.


Tyranitar evolves from Pupitar, which evolves from Larvitar. I'd bet that Larvitar is rarer than both Houndoom and Heracross, so it'll likely be quite some time before you find one. Persevere until you catch on and you're in for one of if not the strongest Pokemon in Pokemon GO.


What Pokemon are you excited to catch and train in Pokemon GO's upcoming Generation 2 update? I was already planning on using Ampharos, myself, but now I'm even more eager to catch one! Sound off in the comments below.


2.) Ampharos


Sliding up at the number two slot is Little Bo Peep's prized Electric type, Ampharos. It may not look it, but this adorable Pokemon packs a powerful punch. Its projected Attack stat soars higher than even Houndoom's and has a better Defense to boot -- which is sweetly complemented by an excellent Stamina stat. It even has the potential to be better than Dragonite.


Ampharos evolves from Flaaffy, which evolves from Mareep. Chances are, Mareep will be the easiest Pokemon from this list to find in Pokemon GO after the Generation 2 update finally hits. If nothing else, it's a fantastic substitute while waiting to find and catch the number one Pokemon on this list.


3.) Houndoom


At number three is the nefarious Dark and Fire type hellhound, Houndoom. This vicious Pokemon is expected to have an incredible Attack stat. Couple that with a projected Defense and Stamina similar to Kingdra's and you have one of the best Pokemon in the game.


When the Generation 2 patch drops for Pokemon GO, keep a look out for Houndour -- the pre-evolution of Houndoom. It won't be an easy Pokemon to find, but if you do pick one up, you shan't regret training it into the formidable Houndoom it can become.


4.) Scizor


In the number four slot, we have everyone's favorite Bug and Steel type, Scizor. Like Heracross, this Pokemon is expected to have a high Attack alongside an even higher Defense. However, while Attack and Defense should both be higher than Heracross, Scizor won't have much Stamina -- likely less than Kingdra or Steelix.


Scizor is easily the strongest Generation 2 Pokemon that evolves from something introduced in Gen 1. You'd be smart to start training your Scyther now to have an edge when the next Pokemon GO update finally drops.


5.) Steelix


Coming up at number five is the original heavy metal Steel and Ground type, Steelix. This Generation 2 Pokemon is a total Defensive beast and we fully expect that to be represented in Pokemon GO. Its Attack stat should be a little worse than Heracross's, but it's Defense more than makes up for it. Unfortunately, it's Stamina won't be all that great, sitting at around the same value as Kingdra's.


Steelix evolves from Onix, which is currently available in Generation 1. If you're looking to use a Steelix next patch, I suggest training up your Onix now.


6.) Heracross


At number six we have the long-time fan-favorite Bug and Fighting type, Heracross. Judging from its appearance in Generation 2, we expect Defense to be its strongest stat in Pokemon GO. Of course, it still has a decent Attack stat, but it shouldn't be quite as high as its Defense. Its Stamina is likely higher than Kingdra's, though not by much.


Heracross is the only Pokemon on this list that doesn't evolve. That also means there's no way to prepare for a good Heracross before the update hits. Chances are, it won't be easy to find, either. If you decide to use a Heracross, we wish you the best of luck on your bug hunt.


7.) Kingdra


Starting off the list at number seven is the classic king of the sea and a powerful Water and Dragon type, Kingdra. We expect Kingdra to have a relatively high Attack stat and equally high Defense in Pokemon GO. Kingdra's projected Stamina may not be as high as others on this list, but it's still nothing to sneeze at. Kingdra's a balanced powerhouse all around.


Luckily, Kingdra will be relatively easy to obtain after the Gen 2 update if you already have a Horsea or Seadra. Best start looking for and training your ideal Horsea now so you can have a powerful Kingdra when the patch hits.


The Generation 2 update for Pokemon GO is rumored to hit Android and iOS devices this month. With it comes over 100 new Pokemon to collect and slot into your team.


We know you're already planning which new Pokemon you'll train up for competitive battling. After carefully analyzing the original Gen 2 games, Pokemon Gold, Silver, and Crystal, we've unearthed the Pokemon we believe will have the maximum possible CP (Combat Power) in Pokemon GO when the new update finally hits.


Since it's unlikely that Legendary Pokemon will be available at game start, we've deliberately excluded them from this list. Of course, you can still expect Generation 2 Legendaries to be among the best Pokemon around, so don't let that mislead you into believing there's nothing better.


The following Pokemon are tough enough to go toe-to-toe with the top Legendaries in the game. Read on to discover the best Generation 2 Pokemon in Pokemon GO.

Pokemon Go Isn't "Dead" but People Like to Think So Fri, 02 Dec 2016 07:00:01 -0500 Janette Ceballos

Make no mistake, Pokémon Go is still alive and kicking, even if some people may think otherwise. Though the game has been marred with bugs and battery draining since the beginning, it’s still one of the top 5 grossing Android apps, with approximately one hundred million to five hundred million downloads to date and more people signing up to play every day.

The game is still great to play while on commutes (as long as you aren’t driving) or in a park or just walking around. You don't need to sink in hours of playing to get rewards since loading up the game usually offers you a few pokémon straight away. This is incentive enough to load up the app for most people who have a bit of time to spare.

Checking into Pokéstops here and there is quick to do with just a swipe of the screen and having them refresh every few minutes makes it worthwhile for players to stay logged onto the games.

An optional component, the Pokémon Go Plus accessory lets players catch the virtual monsters without having to constantly check their phones. It saves time, battery life, and also tracks your travelling distance much better to make it easier to hatch eggs.

Along with this, there is still the allure of catching, battling, and filling out your pokédex in real life. People just aren’t hyper-focusing on it as much.

The game is definitely not talked about as much and as widely as when it first came out, which can be due to its release during the summer when most people had a chance to play for longer periods of time, but Pokémon Go’s presence is still here.

There are still valid updates that improve the performance of the games, including tweaking the tracking aspects of walking and finding pokémon. Special events that offer increased likelihood of catching certain types of monsters and bonuses for hatching and checking in to stops all work to successfully lure people back into playing.

There was a huge increase in interest and subsequent playing during the Halloween and Thanksgiving events. The amazing thing is, Niantic brought people back without adding new content. Just the opportunity of a greater chance in catching ghost type pokémon was enough to draw attention, even if for a little while. Making more events needed to bring players back in, this can be used after an update so that players can experience this update.

There might even be an upcoming release of the second generation in the works which would definitely get people talking when it’s out. The chance of catching even more pokémon can work really well to balance the battling aspects of the game, by introducing new moves and could also lead players back into the game who'd want to fill out the pokédex since new monsters would be available.

Niantic is being clever about some of its new content. For example, adding the copycat Ditto hidden as any other monster, this makes players want to keep catching pokémon until one turns out to be the adorable mimic -- who was not previously included in the game, much to the disappointment of players.

There is very little widespread news compared to when the game first launched. It’s just that Pokémon GO is now a background game: one played in shorter bursts throughout the day rather than the huge sensation it was, possibly due to being eclipsed with the recent release of Pokémon Sun and Moon.

Maybe Niantic should learn from Sun and Moon and add similar features such as grooming for potential bonuses, adding daily or weekly challenges like catching a certain number of Pidgeys, and the long-awaited trading feature to spike its popularity and appeal. Doing so would give players more of an incentive to continue playing if they knew there was more content than what's offered now.

Whatever lies in store for the game, let’s make something clear: Pokémon Go isn’t going anywhere for a while.

Pokemon GO to Receive Gen 2 Update "Soon," According to Datamining Sun, 27 Nov 2016 16:59:37 -0500 Kris Cornelisse (Delfeir)

Datamining the latest Pokemon GO update has revealed evidence for a whole suite of new features to be added to the game soon, not the least of which is the full roster of Gen 2 Pokemon.

From Chikorita to Celebi, every Gen 2 Pokemon is now referenced in the game's code. However, it's best to note that this is still very preliminary; there's no moveset data attached to these Pokemon just yet, which suggests that another update on both server and client side will be necessary before we see them in the wild. As such, there's still no release date to be gathered from this.

In addition to the long-awaited additional Pokemon, there is now code referring to a daily quest system, as well as a potential weekly bonus. No specifics on what bonuses this will offer are forthcoming, however.

While this is all merely analyzing code for the future, the latest update did add Ditto to the world, who can be found masquerading as any other Pokemon. The only way to know you've found one is to catch it and see!

For a full list of features found in the code, The Silph Road's article has you covered.

While there are full blown rumors about an update coming to Pokemon GO in December, there is still no official statement on the matter just yet. Nonetheless, this is very much something to get excited for. We'll be sure to let you know the moment we know anything!

Happy Early Thanksgiving, Pokemon GO Players! Mon, 21 Nov 2016 08:44:07 -0500 Jeffrey Rousseau

Today, the Niantic team behind Pokémon GO announced a special event for the Thanksgiving holiday. From November 23 until November 30, players will be able to receive double experience points and stardust in the game.

Experience points allow players to level up and thus be able to acquire stronger Pokémon. Stardust is an item that allows players to strengthen their pocket monsters. This is similar to the rare candy items from the series. The event is in celebration of the game's success and it's also meant to encourage more activity for fans.

Pokémon GO was originally released for Android and iOS in July. Since its initial release, it has grossed 200 million in sales. Nintendo stock prices also rose as the game became available in more territories. At its peak of popularity it had as many as many active users as

The event, as stated by the team, is in celebration of the game's success. Fans of Pokémon GO can take part of the week-long event in just a few days.

Pokemon Go Update to Add Daily Bonuses Mon, 14 Nov 2016 04:01:14 -0500 Kiara Halls

Over the next few days, Niantic will be rolling out a new update for Pokemon Go. The update is version 1.15.0 on iOS and 0.45.0 for Android.

The update adds three news things, the biggest of which are the Daily Bonuses, which gives players a reward for logging in and visiting PokeStops everyday, with the rewards getting bigger with every seven day streak. Also included in the update are patches where, when taking a Gym, there's a short cooldown period where only you can place a Pokemon in the open top spot, and one where the amount of Prestige a rival Gym loses when a regular Gym member is beaten has gone up, while the amount you receive by training at a friendly Gym has gone down.

Recently, Niantic has been struggling to keep players engaged with Pokemon Go, and this update seems like a reaction to that, as it adds literal incentives to continued play of the game. Time will tell if it's enough to hold players over in lieu of adding new Pokemon. 

Here is Niantic's official message:

Pokémon GO updated to version 0.45.0 for Android and 1.15.0 for iOS Pokémon GO is in the process of being updated to version 0.45.0 for Android and 1.15.0 for iOS devices. Below are some release notes and comments from our development team.

  • You’ll earn bonuses for the first Pokémon catch and PokéStop visit each day. You’ll receive a larger bonus when you do this seven days in a row.
  • When you defeat the Gym Leader at a rival Gym, there will be a brief period of time where only you will be able to place a Pokémon in the open Gym.
  • The amount of Prestige a rival Gym loses when you defeat a regular Gym member has increased. The amount of Prestige gained by training at a friendly Gym has been lowered.
  • Minor text fixes


Has Pokemon Go Gone, or Can People Be Lured Back? Wed, 26 Oct 2016 02:00:01 -0400 SarahKel

So, Pokemon Go has lost 20% of US players within its first month of release. Some would argue that is a fairly standard decrease. However, like most freemium app based games, it burst onto the scene with great aplomb, but then interest waned significantly. Is it possible for Niantic to reclaim bored gamers, or has the bubble burst?

People left as the game became monotonous and somewhat dull. Once the initial 'gotta catch 'em all' attitude was almost unachievable, people gave up. Had Pokemon hunting been totally randomised, as opposed to some Pokemon only being available in certain locations (exempt from this is the water based Pokemon), then everybody would be on a better playing field.

I think they have left it far too long before bringing out a new set of Pokemon, an opportune time could be a tie-in with Pokemon Moon and Sun come November. There are over 700 Pokemon and Pokemon Go has a seventh of them.


I think the practicalities of playing the game has caused changes, people unable to commit to playing for long, and the sheer amount of battery and data charges means it is very much a short burst game now. Plus, the safety aspects of playing the game need to be factored in too, especially in the upcoming cold winter.

Overall, the game needs to fix its fundamental issues, such as the three footstep glitch and re-opening of the PokeVision. Player almost feel as if Niantic is not listening to them, as any game is for its players and this causes yet more frustration.

I think the Halloween event is a good idea; a re-ignition of interest for 1 week. Especially good for players who want to catch Haunters and Ghastly's for example, as during this time, there is an increase in the chance to catch the spookiest of the Pokemon. There is also double candy -- because it's Halloween and there is always candy at Halloween. While this event is a good idea, longer term strategies still need to be thought of. However, these strategies don't look to be coming anytime soon, and the risk of people forgetting about Pokemon Go is real.

Where Haven't We Gone? - Defining Genres in Gaming Tue, 04 Oct 2016 06:00:02 -0400 Jeremy Brown

Think of all the colors you can possibly think of, from the pigments that make skin tones, to the entirety of the light spectrum that makes beautiful rainbows.

Can you think of another? A completely new color that looks nothing like the one's you've seen before. One not made from combining or blending ones of our predetermined, premade palette, but one that's completely new in every way.

I can't. But I'd like to think there's more out there.

In the information age we have now, media is saturated. We see movies that are sequels upon sequels to the point that Marvel has "phases" of dishing out superhero movies. There are hundreds of websites all dedicated to the same things, (celebrity news, user-made videos, social media sites) but we all find the ones that we're content with eventually. Even match-3 "puzzle" games are made for every IP that children are into.

I find that gaming was once perhaps the most innovative form of entertainment. Genres were hard to define for a long time -- but as we've evolved as a culture, there's now dust that has settled from our explosive possibilities.

I recently played through Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots for the first time in a long time, and I was amazed at the level of creativity. The OctoCamo suit allows for incredible stealth moments, and the scripted sequences blew me away. It felt so alive, inspired, fresh, even though it's almost a decade old. But when going further back in the game series, it's not totally innovative  -- instead, it's part of a stellar series making massive improvements.

Then I thought -- out of everything I've played, the genres are all covered. Puzzles, MMOs, first/third-person shooters, roleplaying games, adventure games, platformers, bullet hells, action games with all sorts of weapons, stealth games... what hasn't been done? Is there any genre I can think of that hasn't already existed as a game before?

I can't. But I'd like to think there's more out there.

I think as a community we've become pampered with the industry standards that hurt innovation. Everything we play is autosaved, hosts of content are what we base how much worth a game has, and control schemes have blended to all seem the same. Some of these improvements make sense -- they get rid of things gamers always complained about. With autosaving, you never feel like you lose progress unnecessarily (mostly), for instance. 

One game that never ceases to amaze me is Resident Evil 4. It scares me, it's filled with deep upgrading of a large weaponry, it has a (now) wonderfully campy story surrounding its pulse-pounding action. Even though it ushered in such an important era for the third-person shooter, this game would never be made today.

The controls don't let you strafe, there's no aiming and moving at the same time, and the ludicrous level designs would make people think it's hilariously silly. These are all immediate no-no's in today's market. The game remains one of the most satisfying games in my memory, and my feelings don't change even when my friends wonder why I'm freaking out so much around Regenerators. Resident Evil 4 ensured it kept the strengths of the GameCube, it didn't try to overcome the limitations. This forced design choices within the game to become something more creative than it had to be.

Can this happen again with the way we have our consoles and computers? Consoles are becoming increasingly easy to code for, the controllers more organic, the graphic potential endless, and the amount of us willing to play even $60 games with microtransactions. Is there anything I could do to change the state of game?

I can't. But I'd like to think there's more out there.

Remember the DualShock 4's touchpad? It feels like it's become a big "Select" button rather than an actually new idea. The closest I saw to any game using it for a useful concept was Killzone: Shadow Fall, which used the touchpad to change the programming of your drone companion, the Owl. The rest and best of the games out on PS4 don't bother to try anything unique with the controller. 

This is why I hope to see some wild innovation from Nintendo's next console -- still simply called the NX. If the rumors are true, then this hardware can transform from a handheld device to a powerful living room console at a moment's notice. The possibilities of a device like this could be bigger than anything else before it... ever.

Think about it. Even with Pokémon Go's popularity in augmented reality gaming, Nintendo could push it to an entire other level. While the larger focus of games could be the living room, the games can have alternate additional content that encourages you to go out and interact with the world -- and then interacts with the game in different and unique ways.

I know that Niantic made Pokémon Go, but Nintendo has clearly seen its popularity -- there's already a Mario game on mobile being released now. Perhaps they can bring a new level of immersion to gaming -- one where you can be a part of your games anytime, anywhere.

I'll be the first to admit; I'm not a genius game designer, unlike any of the talented men and women that work in this industry who bring us new and creatively unique games every year. I truly don't know how hard it would be to design, visualize, present, and especially code that next step into a gaming world beyond my own preconceptions. In this journalist's glasses-draped eyes, can I simply ask for a complete new genre, and possibly even a era of gaming?

Who Will You Choose? Pokémon Go's New Buddy System is Live! Tue, 13 Sep 2016 14:42:33 -0400 ChocolateCat42

Welcome, Trainers!

It's finally here! Ever since the latest update was confirmed by Niantic in early September, we've been impatiently waiting. Why? One reason in particular: The Buddy System! Trainers can now choose a Pokémon to exercise, earning candy for their Buddy by going certain distances-- that's right, exactly like hatching an egg! Read on for your step-by-step guide on how to implement this system.

Note: The below guide is demonstrated on an Android device. iOS users may notice some discrepancies.

Step One: Update Pokémon Go

This may seem intuitive, but bear with me. Like the release, this update is crawling through the regions one section at a time. Check your app to ensure that the update is available in your region. Once you finish downloading and installing, you're ready to proceed.

Step Two: Choose Your Pokémon

Now that your app is updated, log in and head to your profile page. As you can see in the image above, I'm demonstrating with my Trainer. (#TeamInstinct)

Open the menu in the lower right-hand corner to see a new option: Buddy. Tapping "Buddy" will pull up a list of your current Pokémon. Select who you wish to exercise and tap on them.

To begin, I chose my starter: Charmander. (Say "hello," Kouta! Char!) As Kouta is the only Charmander I have come across, walking is the best option to finally evolve him and add to my Pokédex. The above screen is now your default Buddy menu. Here, you can check how far you need to walk to earn more candy or switch Buddies. (Professor Willow's voice echoes around you: "If you choose to switch Buddies, all walking progress for your current friend will be lost. Make sure you wait to change until you have earned the latest Candy!")

Once you have set a Buddy Pokémon, they will appear beside you on your Profile page. A small bubble on the main screen also appears alongside your own. Unfortunately, your Buddy does not actually walk alongside you on the screen.

Step Three: Start Walkin'!

Now that your Buddy is ready to go, it's time to get outside and start moving. Just like hatching eggs, earning Candy uses a walk-to-earn system. The distance required varies by Pokémon, so pay attention to your Buddy screen.

But That's Not All!

While choosing our friends to walk with us and earn candy was the most anticipated portion of this update, Niantic had more in store for us. Visuals have been tweaked, as you might have noticed when looking at my Profile screen. Niantic also implemented a fix to the lock-up experienced by many players when walking between WiFi and Data-only zones. Smaller Pokémon will now be easier to select on the screen, and a few minor text edits have been made. Last but not least, support information is now available for those players lucky enough to get a Pokémon Go Plus. While we are eagerly waiting for the new Tracking System to exit Beta, these updates will improve playability and performance for the rest of us. Happy training!

Who did you set as your Buddy Pokémon? Let us know in the comments!