It’s shocking to think that a year ago Niantic Labs teamed up with The Pokémon Company and released an augmented reality title for mobile phones known as Pokémon GO. This mobile hit wonder took the world by storm and brought Pokémon fans closer to what it actually is like to be a Pokémon Trainer in the real world.
A year later and although the games player following is not increasing as it was in the first few months after release, there is still well over 60 million active players. To commemorate this milestone Niantic has released multiple updates including revamped gyms, raid boss battles and gym badges.
The revamped Pokémon gyms look gorgeous and now also act as a PokéStop, giving players items. Although the major feature that’s once again drawing players out onto the streets are the Pokémon Raids. The Raids happen during the day from 9am to 9pm and offers players the chance to team up with 19 other trainers and take on different tier Pokémon from level 1 to level 4. Each tier offers players a challenge of different CP Pokémon with the level 4 tier throwing monstrous Pokémon at trainers with CP reaching over 30,000. And the best part is that if you’re successful in defeating the raid, you’ll have the opportunity to catch that Pokémon.
Another cool feature added are the Pokémon gym badges. The gym badges allow players to keep a record of all the gyms that they’ve visited as well as keep track of which Pokémon trainers have left at the gyms as well as how long these specific pocket monsters have been defending the gyms.
I’m happy to also report that Pikachu is back on the streets to celebrate the anniversary. This time however it has Ash Ketchum’s cap…so make sure to get out there and catch one as with the previous Pikachu, once the event is over you won’t be able to catch it again so you have until the 24th of June to do so.
Trainers have also noticed faster spawn rates from across the world in Pokémon GO which is superb for the grind. Niantic Labs have really blown some fresh air into Pokémon GO, so much so that there are in fact rumors of a 5th tier raid boss battle which hopefully if true might turn out to be the introduction to Legendary Pokémon teased in the games original trailer before launch. Nevertheless I cannot stop myself from playing and find myself making excuses to leave the house in order for me to rush towards a raid battle.
Have you been playing Pokémon GO again and what’s your favorite added feature?