After lording over every other mobile game during its first two months in existence, Pokemon Go has come back down to Earth. The game’s popularity has recently seen a significant decline due to the lack of content and still-repetitive gameplay. With Pokemon Sun and Moon arriving this month, which are shaping up to be Nintendo’s biggest Pokemon games ever, the stakes are now higher for Niantic to produce a better experience for players. Let’s take a look at what Niantic has been up to recently.
The Halloween-themed Pokemon Go event
After teasing it a few days prior on Facebook, Niantic launched their first ever special event last October 26th in the form of the Halloween event that ran until November 1st. Yes, it wasn’t the event everyone was hoping for, one that involved the legendary Pokemon. But it was nevertheless a huge success for all parties involved. The Candy rate boost was just too much for players to pass up on. And so, Niantic reeled in a lot of “dormant” players into the game to take part in the event. The Candy-fest allowed players to evolve Pokemon at a much faster rate, and coupled with the increased appearances of specific Pokemon, it was easier to fill up the Pokedex with new Pokemon. For players living in rural areas, it was a heaven-sent event.
Possible Thanksgiving and Christmas event
Due to the success of the Halloween event, it’s pretty much a given now that Niantic will hold similar events in other holidays. So what’s next? Well, next up is Thanksgiving later this month. But the chances are a bit low: the holiday isn’t really celebrated around the world. If Niantic decides to green-light a Thanksgiving Pokemon Go event, they can simply replicate the bonuses in the Halloween event: More Candies and an increased encounter rate for certain Pokemon. For the latter, Niantic could go for bird-like Pokemon to fit the theme, like Fearow and Pidgeot.
A possible Christmas event is more intriguing, simply because there might be a chance that Niantic will release one of the legendary Pokemon during snow season: the Ice-type Articuno. Like with the Halloween event, Niantic will most likely make certain Pokemon appear more often – specifically, all Ice-type Pokemon. There’s no word yet on both the Thanksgiving and Christmas event, though. But the latter is most likely going to happen.
Daily Quests and Daily Bonuses
Niantic just announced that the game will have another huge update on the way. It will come in the form of daily quests and daily bonuses and are exactly as their name implies. For the first Pokemon catch and first PokeStop visit every day, players will be rewarded with XP and items. And if they build a streak for seven straight days, they will receive even more bonuses. This means that players will be more enticed to play the game every single day. Which translates to a long lifespan for the game.
If this feature turns out to be a hit among players, Niantic will surely expand on the “quests.” Like the first time players defeat a Pokemon in a Gym – friendly or not. However, the game’s lack of other notable gameplay features to build quests upon is a bit of a problem. Unless they’re thinking about very specific ones like the first time use Hydro Pump in battle or something.
Also, there’s another thing worth considering: The lack of a useful Pokemon tracking system, which will be even more pronounced once players commit to hunting Pokemon on a daily basis. The lack of a tracking system has been one of the biggest criticisms thrown at Niantic, as it makes it practically impossible to hunt down a Pokemon after it appears on the Nearby & Sightings screen.
The arrival of Ditto
Like the five legendary Pokemon, Ditto is still missing in the game. Which is quite curious considering the pink gel-like Pokemon isn’t really all that strong. Aside from its move “Transform”, there’s nothing really special about Ditto. So what’s keeping Niantic from releasing Ditto into the wild? According to OtakuKart, Niantic could introduce Ditto in a very unique way, one that’s worth the wait.
As the post suggested, Niantic could introduce Ditto via the other Pokemon. For example, you encounter a seemingly regular Pidgey. But after you secure it inside a Pokeball, it will reveal itself to be Ditto. Rare Pokemon would be excluded in this, of course. And for players to quickly identify a Ditto, Niantic could make Ditto retain its trademark dot eyes and thin mouth. Niantic hasn’t said a word about Ditto, though. So it’s entirely possible that the Pokemon will arrive in a special event, too.
Eevee gets “downgraded”
No, we don’t mean the most unique Pokemon has now become, well, less unique. As reported by Polygon, with confirmation from Niantic, Eevee has now been moved to the 5-kilometer Egg category. Previously, Eevee also hatches from the rare 10-kilometer Egg, which was quite a disappointment for a lot of players who were hoping to receive a much rarer Pokemon after all that exhausting walk.
This change was initially discovered by the good people at The Silph Road. Polygon reached out to Niantic and received confirmation that Eevee has indeed changed Egg categories, but that no other Pokemon has received the same treatment. This isn’t exactly a nerfing like in League of Legends for Eevee. The change is actually beneficial to players and is a cause for approval, unlike a real nerf.
That’s all for now, folks
As mentioned, Pokemon Go still glaringly lacks a Pokemon tracking system. Hopefully, the upcoming daily quests and daily bonuses will be successful enough to once again distract players from the real issue at hand. There’s still no word on the legendary Pokemon and second-gen Pokemon as well. Hopefully, Niantic has grand plans for those two. For their sake.
Want more good news? With the daily quests, you don’t really have to go out and catch Pokemon every day. Well, at least not with your own hands. Why not get someone to catch them for you and rack up on the bonus goodies while you simply sit at home? Sounds more comfy, right?