The GO Battle League Season Seven is now running in Pokémon GO. Ultra League has concluded for now, and Master League Classic, which is a variant of Master League where Pokémon powered up with Candy XL aren't permitted, is currently active. Prepare to take your buddies into battle with this guide, breaking down the top species to use in Pokémon GO Master League Classic battles right now.
According to PvPoke, a platform that plugs in the stats of each species to determine the top meta of each league and cup, has the top twenty Master League Classic choices in Pokémon GO listed as:
Keep in mind that the meta is always shifting due to changes in the effectiveness of certain moves, so be sure to check frequently as to whether your team remains at the top of the Pokémon GO PvP meta.
Unfortunately, the normally present Master League Premier Cup is not currently active. Hopefully, it'll return in Season Eight to keep PvP dynamic in Pokémon GO. As for now, the standard Master League and the Great League are also currently live.
The Pokémon GO referral program is officially here!
If you’re interested in introducing a friend or family member to Pokémon GO, you can now do that and receive rewards that will benefit you and the referred account.
Trainers in Australia have had access to this feature for a short time to give feedback which has helped to shape this new addition to the game.
Date and Time
The Pokémon GO referral program goes live on Tuesday, March 30th at 1pm PT.
From the official announcement:
The Pokémon GO referral program is now active worldwide!
We’d like to thank our Trainers in Australia for helping us test and refine this feature. Your participation and input have helped us prepare this feature for launch.
Every journey is better with friends. So why not invite some of your friends to join yours?
Whether it’s your friend’s first time playing or they’re returning after a break, they’ll receive rewards like Pokémon encounters, Rare Candy, Incubators, and more as they hit milestones on their adventure—and so will you! With the Season of Legends still ongoing, it’s the perfect time to invite your friends to join your journey.
Niantic confirms here that inactive accounts will also receive these rewards after continuing their Pokémon GO journey. This feature provides trainers with a good opportunity to be able to get rare Pokémon encounters and valuable items that can benefit every sort of player.
From these rewards, we can see that they contain rare Pokémon that can often be hard to obtain. Arguably 2 of the rarest encounters, Deino and Gible can be caught from the referred account completing 2 of the respected tasks. We can also see the debut of 2 new stickers featuring Pidgey and Pikachu.
You will also receive the ‘Friend Finder’ badge for referring an account to the game.
How to Refer a Friend
1. Go to the Friends screen and tap Invite to get your referral code.
2. Share that code with a friend who’s new to Pokémon GO or who hasn’t played in at least 90 days.
3. Once they input your referral code—either during the sign-up process or later on the Friends screen—you’ll both begin receiving rewards.
4. As your friend reaches milestones on their journey, you’ll both receive more rewards. Make sure to help them out along the way!
As we can see, referring a friend is as easy as sending an invitation code then sitting back and relaxing while you gain rewards when the referred account accomplishes a task.
Remember what it was like when you first started your Pokémon GO adventure? Were there other Trainers in your life that helped you on your way to becoming the best you can be? We hope the referral program will encourage you to reach out and lend a helpful hand to your friends as well. We’re all here to enjoy Pokémon GO together, and this is the perfect opportunity to welcome (or welcome back) Trainers to our community. Let’s GO on this journey—together!
This feature is a great way to encourage new trainers to give Pokémon GO a shot which ultimately benefits the game and community as a whole.
The only real downside to this feature according to the Pokémon GO community is the idea of people using multiple accounts to benefit from the rewards which are against the ToS.
Another point that trainers have brought up is the idea of rewards becoming exclusive from this feature which may be a painstaking task. Thankfully the current rewards can all be earned in the game from either tasks, raids or encounters.
Will you be introducing a friend to Pokémon GO and swimming in the rewards?
We were critical of Weather Week in our last Pokémon GO review, but another event-within-an-event happened this past weekend: Rayquaza Special Raid Weekend. Let's see if this two-day event offered anything more to Pokémon GO trainers than the disappointing Weather Week event.
What worked for this Pokémon GO event
What didn't work for this Pokémon GO event
This was a perfect raid weekend. It was exciting but still low-key, a good boss with a nice chance at weather boost because… you know, April. Niantic hit this one out of the park.
Niantic has announced Pokémon GO's slate of Mega Raids for April 2021, which will include a surprise Mega Evolved Pokémon appearing for the first time. Let's take a look at what's in the works.
Straight from the official Pokémon GO blog, here is the April 2021 slate of Mega Raids:
Mega Houndoom, Mega Manectric, and Mega Abomasnow will appear in Mega Raids until Sunday, April 4, 2021, at 10:00 a.m. local time.
This is the current Mega Raid rotation active in Pokémon GO right now. Mega Manectric will outstay this rotation as you'll see soon, but Houndoom and Abomasnow will both be replaced so get after those two while you can.
On Sunday, April 4, 2021, at 10:00 a.m. local time, a surprise Mega-Evolved Pokémon will be appearing in Mega Raids. It will continue to appear in Mega Raids for the rest of the month. Stay tuned for more details!
The last time Pokémon GO introduced a new Mega Pokémon, we were able to predict that it'd be Mega Manectric after noticing that the new Mega Raid began the same day as the Electric-themed Charge Up event. Now, this new Mega Raid will begin the same day as the Spring into Spring event, which will focus on "spring- and Egg-themed surprises." This is also Easter Sunday.
It's for sure going to be Mega Lopunny.
Let's see if we go two for two with Mega predictions!
Mega Gengar and Mega Manectric will appear in Mega Raids from Monday, April 5, 2021, at 10:00 a.m. to Tuesday, April 20, 2021, at 10:00 a.m. local time.
Great to see Gengar back, as it's one of the more useful Megas for sure.
Mega Venusaur and Mega Abomasnow will appear in Mega Raids beginning on Tuesday, April 20, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. local time.
Now, listen, I may be looking into this a bit too much… but the two Grass-type Mega Pokémon return on 4/20? Come on, now! Seems suspicious!
Pokémon GO Tour: Kanto introduced what was meant to be an entirely new kind of Special Research experience: Masterwork Research. This, unlike Special Research which started out as intense when the game was new but became commonplace, Masterwork Research was meant to be completed over a long period of time due to time gates and the intensity of the tasks. Now that trainers all around the world are completing this first Masterwork Research and claiming their Shiny Mew encounters, the question should be asked… was that too easy?
Now, you may feel compelled to rush to the comments with an emphatic "No." And you may be right. There were certainly difficult and intense tasks within the Shiny Mew Masterwork Research. Catch 30 Dragon-types? Difficult. Walk 151 KM? Intense. However, most of the work was done on a long, time-gated Page Two. It wasn't even 24 hours after Page Three was revealed that the fourth and final page was as well.
The Masterwork Research is in many ways meant to replace our original idea of Special Research. When Pokémon GO was a newer game, Special Research was harder to complete due to the lack of major in-game bonuses. For instance, evolving a Magikarp up to Gyarados was a major task. I remember evolving my first Gyarados right before the Mew Special Research came out and lamenting at how long it'd take me when I saw the "Evolve a Magikarp" task. It felt intense. Looking back, that Special Research is less intensive in many ways than our current Timed Research which is meant to be completed in less than a week. Pokémon GO has changed and Special Research isn't hard anymore.
Masterwork Research, which was designed to be difficult, I personally feel should be more arduous the next time it comes out. When, for example, we get Shiny Jirachi, I love the idea of a ten or even twenty-page questline that will feel, at the end, as if we've completed a full game within the game. That, that sense of long-term achievement, is currently only tied to Level 40 and Level 50 in Pokémon GO… but it doesn't have to be that way. Shiny Mythicals should take a journey to catch, and I'm ready for a long one.
Shiny Rainy Castform debuts today in Pokémon GO. Castform, the Weather Pokémon, has four forms: Normal, Sunny, Rainy, and Snowy, all of which can spawn in the wild depending on what the current weather boost is. Unlike in the main series games where Castform can transform, Pokémon GO features all four forms as individual Pokémon that are locked to that form. Because of this, previously only Normal Form Castform could be Shiny. With the current Weather Week Event adding Shiny Rainy Castform to Pokémon GO, we are bound to get Shiny releases for the other forms too.
Pokémon GO players will be able to obtain Rainy Form Castform encounters through:
Other spawns during the event will be broken into two three-day runs. The first run will focus on Pokémon boosted during rainy conditions while the second will focus on species boosted during windy conditions. The confirmed spawns are:
More species than those will be available, but that's all that Niantic has explicitly confirmed as part of the event. Unfortunately, trainers who have played the event for some time while it's been live in other timezones have mentioned that Rainy Form Castform, despite being the Shiny release of the event, is not spawning outside of its normal weather patterns. This may be a difficult hunt, fellow Pokémon GO trainers.
It’s time for Weather Week in Pokémon GO which means it’s also time to complete a new set of Timed Research. This free set of objectives offers some great bonuses for players to enjoy. And since you have a week to complete it, you have a good chance at finishing it up. But with the event split in half for some things, you’ll want to be sure you follow along with all the tasks your assigned. To help, here’s all of the Pokémon GO Weather Week Timed Research tasks and rewards.
Weather Week Timed Research Tasks and Rewards in Pokémon GO
Below we break down all of the tasks you have to complete to finish the Weather Week Timed Research which can be found in the Today menu in Pokémon GO. Each step along the way offers its own reward, with a full set of rewards in each of the four stages. We have them all listed below so check it out and make sure you finish up before the event ends on Monday, March 29th at 8pm local time.
Note: (S) indicates the encounter can be shiny
Stage 1 of 4
Rewards: Wailmer encounter (S), 5 Poké Balls, and 500 XP
Stage 2 of 4
Rewards: Rainy Form Castform encounter (S), 7 Poké Balls, and 500 XP
Stage 3 of 4
Rewards: Swellow encounter, 10 Poké Balls, and 800 XP
Stage 4 of 4
Rewards: Togetic encounter, 10 Poké Balls, and 800 XP
So that’s all of the Pokémon GO Weather Week Timed Research tasks and rewards. Every event offers its own set of bonuses and research. Be sure to check out our full event guide if you have other questions or want to be sure you get the most out of this unique celebration.
During Pokémon GO Tour: Kanto, Niantic debuted a new mechanic in the game. Like the original games, players could encounter non-villainous NPCs and battle them. Before this, the only types of NPC battles in Pokémon GO were Team GO Rocket encounters that end with the player catching and "rescuing" the abandoned Shadow Pokémon. These Pokémon GO Tour: Kanto battles instead resembled the original game more, with rewards for the player rather than an encounter. These NPCs were based on real-life trainers that won a contest ahead of the event, but the original series of games has a ton of characters to pull from. Personally, I think adding these types of encounters as a permanent part of Pokémon GO would greatly enrich the gameplay.
The original games feature a long list of trainer classes (kinds of encounterable trainers) including Beauty, Biker, Birdkeeper, Black Belt, Bug Catcher, and that's just a small piece of the Bs. The list goes on and on. Right now, Pokémon GO is about to add the first major addition to the game since the reveal of Level 50 and the addition of Seasons in late 2021 with the new Friend Referral system. However, just take a look back at 2020. Before that landmark year, there was no Buddy Adventure, GO Battle League, Remote Raids, Remote Raid Invites, or GO/HOME connectivity. Before 2019, there was no Team GO Rocket. In a relatively short period of time, Pokémon GO has entirely changed, adding more and more compelling new features. It has been quite a while since we've had a game-changing development, and the addition of permanent NPCs would be a perfect way to keep the game fresh.
This could even lead to more Special Research or, even better, long-term Masterwork Research that can culminate in battles with the franchise's most popular NPCs: the Gym Leaders and then, ultimately, the Elite Four. Pokémon GO Tour: Kanto sought to recreate the original games, so we're already on the path. Hopefully, Niantic spices things up and makes these kinds of encounters permanent to bring some much-needed freshness to the game.
Niantic has posted confirmation that the friend limit in Pokémon GO will be expanded. This increase in the limit follows the announcement of friendship referrals, which offers rewards to new players, returning players as well as active players who bring those new and returning players to Pokémon GO. It's going to be a complex system that we'll get into soon, but this increase on the friends limit will be active even for those who choose not to participate in the referral code system. Let's take a look at what Niantic has said about this update, which has been requested by Pokémon GO players for quite a while.
On Twitter, Niantic posted:
We're beginning to roll out an update over the coming weeks to Niantic Friends – so you'll be able to see your network across all of our titles! We're also working to expand your friend limit to 400 at the end of this upgrade 🎉
We'll update you when the roll out is complete!
Please note that the increased friend limit is launching soon. As we implement the change to Niantic Friends, your updated friends list may exceed the current limit of 200, but you won't be able to manually add friends beyond this limit until the roll out is complete.
This has an impact not only on the upcoming referral system but also on how trainers will accrue XP to level up. A major way that Pokémon GO players rake in huge amounts of XP at once is by coordinating Lucky Eggs with Friends as they hit Ultra and Best Friends, which will offer 100,000 XP and 200,000 XP respectively with an Egg on. Now, with 200 new slots opening on the Friends list, getting to Level 50 may not seem as daunting as it once did to some.
Mega Abomasnow is back in raids in Pokémon GO. In this ever-shifting meta, let's take a look at the top counters to help trainers take down this dual Grass/Ice-type, which can be encountered in its Shiny form. With this Raid Guide, you can prepare a team to take on this Mega, perfect your catching strategy, and understand Abomasnow's 100% IVs.
Top Mega Abomasnow Counters
Pokebattler, which calculates all possible combinations of Pokémon and moves, lists the top 10 Mega Abomasnow counters as such:
*Keep in mind that you can only have one Pokémon Mega Evolved at once, so your best bet is to go with Charizard Y over Charizard X, as it is the stronger option.
It is recommended to power up your counters as much as possible, but creating that amount of strong Shadow or Mega Pokémon with their moves unlocked is a tall order for even the most practiced players. Here are ten additional non-Shadow and non-Mega counters that can help take down Mega Abomasnow with efficiency.
How Many Trainers Are Needed?
Mega Abomasnow has a double weakness to Fire-types and, due to this, can be defeated with two trainers. If you cannot guarantee the top counters with maxed out CP and the best moves, your best bet is to make sure you have three or more players.
Using the Circle Lock Technique to guarantee Great or Excellent throws, along with Golden Razz Berries, is the best way to catch Abomasnow. Even though this Mega reverts to its standard form before the catch screen, this isn't the easiest of catches compared to a wild spawn.
Shiny Odds & 100% IVs
The Shiny rate for Mega Raid Pokémon is approximately one in 60.
When looking for a Pokémon with the best stats, the 100% IV Mega Abomasnow will have a CP of 1349 in normal weather conditions and 1687 in boosted conditions.
Happy raiding, fellow trainers!