GameSpot may receive revenue from affiliate and advertising partnerships for sharing this content and from purchases through links.

Pokemon Go Has Made Some Big Changes To Raid Battles

Mega Evolutions have debuted in Pokemon Go, and they arrive alongside some major changes to the game's Raid system.


Mega Evolutions have finally arrived in Pokemon Go, giving players the ability to power certain Pokemon up into new forms. That's not the only big change to hit the Pokemon mobile game this week, however. Coinciding with the debut of Mega Evolutions, developer Niantic has made some significant adjustments to Raid Battles.

First, Niantic has removed two- and four-star Raids, leaving only the one-, three-, and five-star Raid tiers. According to product lead Matt Slemon, the reason these Raids are being removed is because they weren't as popular as the other tiers. Their value proposition also wasn't as apparent; for example, players would know at a glance that they could clear a three-star Raid with one or two companions, although it wasn't as obvious how many players it would take to beat a four-star Raid or what the incentive was to join one of those over a five-star Raid.

Although two- and four-star Raids will no longer appear in the game, the rewards you'd normally get from them are being folded into one- and three-star Raids, respectively. Niantic says this solution offers "the best of both worlds" and should make Raids more fun and rewarding to join.

Mega Blastoise Raid. Battle
Mega Blastoise Raid. Battle

Additionally, Niantic has removed the team contribution bonus for Raids, as the studio felt the system unfairly penalized players who were on the minority team. In its place, Niantic has implemented a new speed clear bonus; the faster your team is able to defeat a Raid boss, the more rewards and Premier Balls you'll earn after the battle. This change rewards players for completing Raids quickly and ties into the new cooperative elements that Mega-Evolved Pokemon bring to the game.

Finally, Niantic has introduced a new type of Raids: Mega Raids. These feature Mega-Evolved Pokemon as Raid bosses and are roughly equivalent to five-star Raids in terms of difficulty, so players will need to band together to conquer them. If you manage to defeat a Mega Raid boss, you will net that Pokemon's corresponding Mega Energy, a new type of resource that's required to Mega Evolve your Pokemon. You can learn more about the process in our Mega Evolutions guide.

Those aren't the only tweaks and changes that Niantic has made to Pokemon Go. The studio recently announced it has adjusted Pokemon spawn locations again, making Pokemon more common in areas they hadn't previously appeared. Beyond that, the Legendary Pokemon Heatran has returned to five-star Raids for a limited time, while Porygon and Charmander were recently selected as September and October's Community Day Pokemon.

Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email

Join the conversation
There are 11 comments about this story