After a year since its initial release, Pokémon Go Developer Niantic has released a major update for the game. Gyms seem to be the centerpiece of this new update as Niantic is calling it “the biggest update to Pokémon Go”.
In this new update, which doesn’t have a release date yet, Niantic are redesigning gyms as well as adding raid battles in the near future. The gyms will no longer be based on your group’s overall training or battling. Six permanent slots will be added to each gym to put your Pokémon in and instead of being ranked by CP level they will be placed depending on the order they are out in the gyms. This seems to add another level of strategy that your gym will have to figure out. One detail made specifically is you can have only one type of Pokémon. For example, you can go and use six Charizards or six Blastoises to help dominate your gym.
Another feature added to Pokémon Go is the motivation system. Pokémon in gyms will now have to be taken care of to help them feel motivated. The more motivated a Pokémon feels, the better it will perform in gym battles. If a Pokémon’s motivation gets to low, its CP level will start to lower and if it gets too low, it will return to its trainer the next time it loses a battle. In order to keep your Pokémon feeling motivated, Trainers in a gym can feed berries to the Pokémon so they avoid their Pokémon being unmotivated. Gyms have also become Pokestops which allows players to spin to get free stuff. The developers decided to do this because one of their motivations was to provide more Pokestops to rural and suburban areas.
The newly announced Raid Battle feature seems to be the most intriguing. When a raid is about to begin, all Pokémon will return to their trainers and an egg will be placed on top of the gym with a timer. Once that timer goes off, the raid boss will be released. You and up to 20 players will have five minutes after the timer has gone off to defeat this Pokémon. In order to be able to participate in a raid, you must raid pass which can be acquired for free by visiting a gym and you can only have one at a time. If you and your group of trainers defeat the raid boss, you have a chance to catch the boss as well as acquiring some new items such as rare candy, golden razz berry and technical machines. The reason Niantic decided to add raids was to get players outside again and working together. Niantic made it possible that no matter if you rarely play the game or play it everyday you’ll have a chance to participate in battling a raid boss.
In order for Niantic to release the new update, they need to temporarily disable the gyms. The gyms should be enabled very soon with this massive update added. Betas will then release to test out the new raid boss feature and will continue to grow until the raid boss system is ready for release which should be very soon after the newest update arrives. Things seem to be going great for Niantic as Pokémon Go is getting more content which will surely attract both new and old fans of the series.
UPDATE: The patch is scheduled to roll out later today for both iOS and Android.