Pokemon GO players who have been earning stamps as part of the new Field Research system may be disappointed that Moltres has been the breakthrough reward every time since the feature launched. However, that will change come May 1, when Moltres will be rotated out in favor of the electric/flying-type legendary Pokemon Zapdos.
Pokemon GO players who have been earning a stamp every day since the feature went live should still be able to bag one more Moltres before it is replaced by Zapdos. However, players could theoretically wait to earn their Field Research breakthrough stamp until May 1 at 1pm Pacific to earn Zapdos as soon as it’s available. Otherwise players will have to wait until Thursday, May 3 to get their first Zapdos through the Field Research system.
Besides the addition of Zapdos, the Field Research system will undergo some other changes on May 1. A new set of Field Research tasks focusing on electric- and flying-type Pokemon will become available at the same time, in addition to new skill-based objectives. It’s likely that these new objectives will yield new rewards as well, including different Pokemon encounters.
The addition of Zapdos to Pokemon GO‘s Field Research system on May 1 is significant for a few reasons. One, it potentially establishes that Field Research quests will be freshened up on a monthly basis with a new legendary Pokemon, and two, it will allow players in rural areas who can’t participate in raids to better fill out their Pokedex.
If the pattern holds and Articuno is added to Field Research in June, then it follows that July, August, and September will feature the legendary beasts, with Lugia making an appearance by the end of the year as well. This means that the Field Research system could catch up to legendary raids pretty quick, and so Niantic may start adding new legendary raid bosses on a more frequent basis.
Of course, that’s just speculation at this time. It’s possible that Zapdos will stay as the Field Research breakthrough reward for some time, and Niantic isn’t planning on monthly rotations. We’ll have a better idea of what the studio is planning once June rolls around and we can determine if a pattern is being established or not.