Following a Pokémon GO datamine that suggested that Shadow Pokémon and Team GO Rocket would become prominent once again, Niantic has officially confirmed that will be the case in March 2020 with a new update to Shadow Pokémon hinting that Team GO Rocket's nefarious activities are only increasing. Does that mean a more widescale event is imminent?
In an update on Monday, the developers highlighted that Team GO Rocket is working in-game to increase the power of Shadow Pokemon around the world, and the end result is a significant buff to all Shadow Pokémon.
Any Shadow Pokémon that players find will have more powerful Fast and Charged Attacks. "Legendary Shadow Pokémon that you save from Giovanni are now more powerful," the update also confirms. While that should make Shadow Pokémon tougher overall, they'll also now take more damage when attacked, essentially transforming them into glass cannons that can deal a lot of damage but not take it.
Once you catch a Shadow Pokémon, training them has also become easier. Powering them up and teaching an additional charge attack doesn't cost as much Candy or Stardust as it did before. Players will even be able to replace their Frustration attack with another Charged TM later this month. As such, purifying all of your caught Shadow Pokémon may not always be the best option now. Considering that a Shadow Entei raid is poised to happen later this month, players may want to keep some Shadow Pokémon around.
This all should come to head this weekend, as Niantic confirmed last week that another Team GO Rocket Global takeover will happen between March 6 and March 9. During that period, Team GO Rocket will be taking over more Pokestops, and defeating them will ground two times the usual amount of Stardust. The in-game music will also be changed to Team Rocket's theme.
The Inverse Analysis
Niantic's latest announcements indicate that March will be an exciting month for Pokémon GO players. Shadow Pokémon have been in the game since last July, so it's nice to see that the game will finally start to do more with them. I also hope these changes stick around after this weekend because these changes make Shadow Pokémon more interesting than they have ever been. Even if Shadow Pokémon aren't you're thing, there is still a ton of other content to look forward to in March as well.
In addition to the aforementioned Shadow Entei event, a February 28 post from Niantic highlights other March events. For example, Ferroseed is the Research Breakthrough encounter until April 1, and Thunderus is available in five-star raids. Various raids featuring Pokémon like Darkrai, Altered Form Giratina, Cobalion, and Lugia are also planned for events in the near future. Towards the end of the month, another Psychic Spectacular will be held, adding Unovan Pokémon like Solosis and Gothita in the game.
March also brings some new bonuses during specific days of the week. At 6 p.m. every Tuesday, more Pokémon will appear in the wild. Meanwhile, 6 p.m. on Thursdays will bring more Candy, Stardust, or XP bonuses as rewards for dedicated players.
If you've been looking for a reason to jump back into Pokémon GO, this should give you more than enough reason to.