Niantic Reveals Major Pokémon Go Update With Revamped Gyms, Co-op Raid Battles Coming Soon

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Niantic and The Pokémon Company today revealed an all-new gym system heading to the popular mobile app Pokémon Go soon, as well as announcing a new cooperative "Raid Battle" update coming in the future. For gyms, the developer said that its goal was to encourage more players to head to friendly gyms because now they'll be able to interact with them in new ways.

Notably, gyms will now act as PokéStops and include a spinnable disc that gives players unique items like Poké Balls. The basic structure of a gym is being altered as well, so now six Pokémon can occupy a gym and each one must be unique, preventing duplicates of the same Pokémon from appearing multiple times in one gym battle. Enemy teams will battle these Pokémon in the order they were added to the Gym, not in the order of their combat power as before.


Pokémon will also need to be motivated to stay inside a gym with the new "motivation system." Over time, each Pokémon will lose motivation naturally and as they are defeated in battle, temporarily lowering its combat power so enemy teams will be able to more easily defeat the gym. To help keep up a Pokémon's motivation, friendly team members can feed it berries.

Niantic said that all of these updates will feed into the new gym badges system as well, which will reward players for taking part in battles and feeding berries to Pokémon.
Now you'll be able to earn Gym Badges when interacting with the many Gyms around the world. Gym Badges serve as mementos of your Pokémon GO adventures and reflect your contribution to a Gym's success.

You'll be able to level up your Badges by battling, giving Berries to the Pokémon in the Gym and spinning the Gym's Photo Disc. You can earn the opportunity to receive bonus items and increased rewards from Gyms by raising the level of your Gym Badge.
In the coming weeks, players will be able to take on new "Raid Battles" at gyms, which Niantic described as a cooperative experience that forces trainers to work together to take down a Raid Boss. Before a Raid Battle begins, Pokémon at the gym in question will return to their trainers and a large egg will appear on top of the gym with a countdown clock.

When the countdown reaches zero the Raid Boss is revealed and players will be able to take on the challenge as long as they have a Raid Pass, which can be obtained each day by visiting a Gym, but only one can be held at a time. Up to twenty players can be in a Raid Battle at once, working together to take down the boss, similar to the original announcement trailer for the game back in 2015.


If the boss is defeated in under five minutes, each participant will have a chance to catch an "extra powerful Pokémon," as well as a few new items.
After defeating a Raid Boss, you'll receive a collection of rewards, including some new items obtained only by defeating a Raid Boss: Rare Candies, Golden Razz Berries, and two types of Technical Machines--Fast and Charged. A Rare Candy is a mysterious candy that, when used on a Pokémon, turns into that Pokémon's Candy. Golden Razz Berries will greatly increase your chances of catching a Pokémon you encounter in the wild and can also be given to a Pokémon assigned to a Gym to fully recover its motivation meter. Technical Machines are items you can use to permanently teach a Pokémon a new Fast Attack or Charged Attack.
Niantic said that the gym update will begin rolling out to players around the world "very soon" (until then, gyms are disabled in the game), and Raid Battles will show up over the next few weeks, beginning in beta form. Recently, Niantic revealed some events occurring out in the real world to celebrate the one year anniversary of the app, which debuted in July of 2016, while Niantic CEO John Hanke commented on Apple's upcoming ARKit developer platform and how it will change Pokémon Go and AR apps in general.

Article Link: Niantic Reveals Major Pokémon Go Update With Revamped Gyms, Co-op Raid Battles Coming Soon
 

Bigsk8r

macrumors 6502
Nov 28, 2011
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Austin, Texas
I took a gym a few hours ago, where they disabled just now?
My guess is that they will take them down sometime tomorrow at the conclusion of the Fire & Ice event. You'll likely have the gym until 1 PM California time tomorrow. After that, all bets are off!
 

chrisdazzo

macrumors 6502a
Apr 11, 2006
644
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Colorado
Gyms are only showing “error” after a battle begins (I’m right on top of one), though the Shop is showing discounts (might’ve been a temporary error, disappeared for a few minutes there and went blank). Perhaps the gym closings are already happening..? Guessing it’ll be a gradual rollout.
 

lunarworks

macrumors 68000
Jun 17, 2003
1,972
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Toronto, Canada
It'll be nice to see what they have in store for iOS 11 this fall. Tearing out their own shoddy AR and replacing it with ARKit should improve things quite a bit.
 

WRChris

macrumors 6502a
Aug 17, 2016
655
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Indiana
Love this. Me and millions of others still play every single day before someone says "people still play this?"
I'm glad you live in an area Niantic thinks deserves pokemon. I'd love to play and give them money but they think pokemon should only spawn in cities, you know, their natural environment. I wouldn't hold my breath about this update. Niantic has shown no interest in making an app that's more than an endless pidgey grind.
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It'll be nice to see what they have in store for iOS 11 this fall. Tearing out their own shoddy AR and replacing it with ARKit should improve things quite a bit.
Who uses the ar function? Make the game playable before adding useless features.
[doublepost=1497884684][/doublepost]
My guess is that they will take them down sometime tomorrow at the conclusion of the Fire & Ice event. You'll likely have the gym until 1 PM California time tomorrow. After that, all bets are off!
You will know when Niantic takes them down. There is no indication based off previous updates, that Niantic will ever tell their users what's going on.
 

dude-x

macrumors regular
Mar 2, 2007
172
216
New York City
I'm disappointed that they don't add player vs player battling outside the gym, or more usefully trading pokémon!!! I "play" this game every day hoping that Niantic will allow player trading but instead they focus on new battle mechanics rather than player collaboration.
 
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CarlJ

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Feb 23, 2004
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San Diego, CA, USA
It'll be nice to see what they have in store for iOS 11 this fall. Tearing out their own shoddy AR and replacing it with ARKit should improve things quite a bit.
It's a bit tricky in the case of Pokémon GO, because it has to run on Android as well (there are probably more players on Andreoid than iOS), and ARKot won't be available there. But, yeah, it'll be interesting to see what they do.
[doublepost=1497889020][/doublepost]Don't know how this will all pan out, but glad to see them shaking things up and making more useful ways to interact with a gym besides just putting a Pokémon in it - the three nearest gyms tend to always be level 10 blue... yeah, I can tear one down, but it takes a lot of time and supplies, and I put a Pokémon in it and it's red for an hour and the next day it's L10 blue again. The payoff isn't really worth the effort.
 
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lunarworks

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It's a bit tricky in the case of Pokémon GO, because it has to run on Android as well (there are probably more players on Andreoid than iOS), and ARKot won't be available there. But, yeah, it'll be interesting to see what they do.
During the WWDC keynote they briefly showed an updated, more realistic looking Pokemon GO using ARKit. Apple's probably partnering with them for it because it's still a somewhat high profile app, and an ideal showcase for their new API.
 

andy9l

macrumors 68000
Aug 31, 2009
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England, UK
Love this. Me and millions of others still play every single day before someone says "people still play this?"
I occasionally come across a young kid and their dad still playing this together on a single screen, and it makes me smile.

If I was a bit younger, or if I had a kid, I'd be all over it. Great game, despite its slow development and initial flaws.

PC disclaimer - I'm sure plenty of mums/moms play too.
 

milo

macrumors 604
Sep 23, 2003
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Gyms are disabled now. Looks like 'mon haven't returned yet and coin bonus can still be collected for now.
 
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0098386

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Jan 18, 2005
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Hey this could be great :) I've recently got back into it and it's still a lot of fun - love the little changes like being able to mass remove Pokemon instead of going through them individually.
 
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WRChris

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Aug 17, 2016
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Hey this could be great :) I've recently got back into it and it's still a lot of fun - love the little changes like being able to mass remove Pokemon instead of going through them individually.
It's bad the only thing that has changed in 1 year is the ability to delete more than 1 pokemon at a time lol
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I use the AR function. It's more fun that way.
Yeah, anything would make it more fun, but the AR eats up the battery even faster so I doubt it's used by many.

I'm not sure how people can call this a game, it's just tapping the same thing over and over. Want to be good? Live in a city, that's pretty much all you can do.

I've acquired 4 metal coats, 6 upgrades and 1 king rock. I've given up trying to play this game because it's rubbish. That's 11 weeks of hitting a stop and catching a Pokémon everyday for 3 items.

Just going off what MR is reporting, this adds no features other then making gyms a pokestop. Changed intro animations and no duplicates are not new features. That's barely scratching the surface(at all?) of what is wrong with the gyms/entire app.

It was hard enough to get candies and stardust to get the Pokémon in the gyms, now we will need another currency(berries) just to keep them there.
 
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0098386

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Jan 18, 2005
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It's bad the only thing that has changed in 1 year is the ability to delete more than 1 pokemon at a time lol
[doublepost=1497903001][/doublepost]
Yeah, anything would make it more fun, but the AR eats up the battery even faster so I doubt it's used by many.

I'm not sure how people can call this a game, it's just tapping the same thing over and over. Want to be good? Live in a city, that's pretty much all you can do.

I've acquired 4 metal coats, 6 upgrades and 1 king rock. I've given up trying to play this game because it's rubbish. That's 11 weeks of hitting a stop and catching a Pokémon everyday for 3 items.

Just going off what MR is reporting, this adds no features other then making gyms a pokestop. Changed intro animations and no duplicates are not new features. That's barely scratching the surface(at all?) of what is wrong with the gyms/entire app.
That's the big one I noticed, and back when I floored it last year, was the only "feature" I didn't like. I also love the Apple Watch app, the buddy system, and the chaining point feature. I don't like the load time now, though, and how often it crashes when booting.
 

WRChris

macrumors 6502a
Aug 17, 2016
655
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Indiana
That's the big one I noticed, and back when I floored it last year, was the only "feature" I didn't like. I also love the Apple Watch app, the buddy system, and the chaining point feature. I don't like the load time now, though, and how often it crashes when booting.
Mine loads up maybe 2/5 times. I haven't used the Watch app since it debuted but it didn't do anything for me. Don't even get me going on the buddy system 110+km for 50 candies is ridiculous. I want this app to be good, so badly, but it will never be worth a darn. Maybe in another year they will have 1 more feature lol
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I'm disappointed that they don't add player vs player battling outside the gym, or more usefully trading pokémon!!! I "play" this game every day hoping that Niantic will allow player trading but instead they focus on new battle mechanics rather than player collaboration.
The ability to trade would ruin the game. The only real goal of pogo is to catch them all, speed that up and there's absolutely nothing to do. PvP would be nice as long as it was rewarding in stardust but you can bet it won't be. If anything it will be 25xp towards the 3million xp goal. You seem to think the battle mechanics are changing, but I'd lay down a paycheck that it will be the same swipe-a-thon. The gyms "may" appear different but they are not doing a complete rework of moves/mechanics. It will just require more grinding to get berries to keep them in the gyms. So another form of currency that is next to impossible to acquire. If you open the app everyday hoping for changes, you are most likely more disappointed then I am.
 

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CarlJ

macrumors 601
Feb 23, 2004
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San Diego, CA, USA
During the WWDC keynote they briefly showed an updated, more realistic looking Pokemon GO using ARKit.
Yep, I was watching too. It was a neat tech demo for ARKit (not as astonishing as some of the others, but using/improving something instantly familiar to many people). But, again, Niantic has to support both iOS and Android, and it raises a question of how much do they diverge the code in PoGo between the two platforms - every place where they go all-in on ARKit, they either have to work out how to have a corresponding experience on Android, or decide to let the iOS experience be clearly superior and then deal with the ramifications from the Android users.
 

Json81

macrumors regular
Jan 9, 2012
110
84
My guess is that they will take them down sometime tomorrow at the conclusion of the Fire & Ice event. You'll likely have the gym until 1 PM California time tomorrow. After that, all bets are off!
Gyms are down here (Sweden) now, Fire & Ice is still active.

But more importantly, they have added two pokestops around my office!
 
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WRChris

macrumors 6502a
Aug 17, 2016
655
932
Indiana
Yep, I was watching too. It was a neat tech demo for ARKit (not as astonishing as some of the others, but using/improving something instantly familiar to many people). But, again, Niantic has to support both iOS and Android, and it raises a question of how much do they diverge the code in PoGo between the two platforms - every place where they go all-in on ARKit, they either have to work out how to have a corresponding experience on Android, or decide to let the iOS experience be clearly superior and then deal with the ramifications from the Android users.
Niantic doesn't deal with ramifications on any thing they screw up. They just let it be until the users who were complaining just quit playing.
 
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