Niantic Announces Legendary Pokemon for Pokemon Go

Pokemon GoNiantic Pokemon Go Facebook page

Pokemon Go launched just over a year ago and quickly became the most popular mobile game of all time. Even now, during what is generally considered a decline period for the augmented reality game, it is still in the top five for daily users, dwarfing most of the competition. But since it began, there has long been something missing, and players have been begging for the completion of their Pokedex: Legendary Pokemon.

The first generation of Pokemon traditionally includes 151 different Pokemon. At launch, players could only capture 145, and four of those were regional exclusives, so unless you were willing to travel to the four worldwide regions (Asia, North America, Europe, and Oceania), you could really only get yours. Another of the missing ones was ditto, though it later became available during the Halloween event. There are still five missing slots — Articuno, Moltres, Zapdos, Mew, and Mewtwo.

[Image by Bob Knudsen]Featured image credit: Bob Knudsen

Adding insult to injury, the initial launch trailer heavily featured Mewtwo, as well what appeared to be a large raid party. Until about a month ago, raid parties were not a thing, and legendaries still remained a pipe dream. Generation Two has also been released in the interim, adding another five legendaries to the mix, as well as two more regional exclusives for the tropics and for Latin America, and two others which have yet to be even hinted.

Niantic has officially announced that the legendaries will be a part of Chicago Pokemon Go Fest occurring this weekend, along with Lugia, part of Generation Two, or Johto, featured heavily in the trailer. Hopefully, this means that all ten of the legendaries will be obtainable via gym raids, but a staggered release is certainly a possibility.

If the legendary raid battles are as challenging as the raid battles for the existing mons, however, it will almost certainly take a group of 10 or more high-level players to take one of these beasties down. Anybody who has tried to solo a Tyranitar or Blastoise recently can certainly attest to that.

Niantic’s goal is to try to gin up interest to the levels of last summer when the craze was at its peak. It was difficult to walk down the street or go to the park without running into a group of eager players of all ages, from toddlers to the elderly. The game spurned an exercise craze and showed what the next level of augmented reality games could look like.

Of course, once players grab the ten legendaries, there will still be gaps for Delibird and Smeargle, the two missing Johto mons, as well as any regionals for continents they haven’t been to within the last year. The regionals appear to be scheduled for limited release in select areas, and the United Kingdom is eagerly awaiting their Kangaskhan as the first traveling Pokemon. No word on the other two as of yet, but you can be sure they will be coming at some point, probably also during a special event or holiday.

[Featured Image by Pokemon Go/Pokemon Go Facebook]