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How to beat Team GO Rocket and purify Shadow Pokemon in ‘Pokemon Go’

Published Aug 1st, 2019 3:11PM EDT
Pokemon Go: Team Rocket
Image: Niantic

Pokemon Go received one of its most anticipated updates in months last week as developer Niantic added a new foe in the form of Team GO Rocket. This devious organization has captured wild Pokemon and turned them into Shadow Pokemon, and it’s your job to defeat the evil grunts and save the affected creatures.

In order to do that, you need to search for discolored PokeStops scattered around the world and spin the Photo Disc, at which point one of the Team GO Rocket grunts will appear and taunt you. At this point, you can choose to do battle with the grunt, and the following guide will help you to successfully defeat the new baddies.

The first step is to find one of the discolored PokeStops, which can be identified by their slightly darker color scheme and the fact that they flail around like they’re glitching out. Once you come across one, you shouldn’t have any trouble differentiating between normal and discolored PokeStops going forward.

But that’s the easy part. The next step (after spinning the Photo Disc) is paying attention to the text from the Team GO Rocket grunt when he or she pops up to taunt you. The words that they use will help to give you an idea of what type their most powerful Pokemon is, so you can plan ahead and form a team best-suited to defeat the tough Pokemon. Most of the hints are fairly obvious, so if you see the word “water” in the grunt’s taunt, prepare for a Squirtle or a Mudkip. “Roar” is Dragon-types, “tangle” is Grass-types, “bird” is Flying-types, and so on.

In my limited experience participating in these battles, the recommended party has been plenty to vanquish my foes, but if you don’t want to have to try again (for which there is no penalty other than having to heal any of your defeated Pokemon), you might want to do a little strategizing and form the perfect team.

The battles themselves are fairly straightforward, and other than the new minigames you have to complete in order to unleash your Charge Moves, you just need to tap on the screen repeatedly until the Shadow Pokemon faints. You will also have two Protect Shields you can use to block an attack, so make sure to use these when the grunt attempts to hit you with a Charge Move. The grunts themselves don’t have any shields.

Once you have taken out all three of the Team GO Rocket grunt’s Pokemon, the grunt will “carelessly abandon” one of the Shadow Pokemon, which you will then have an opportunity to catch. Much like in a Raid, you will get Premier Balls to use during the encounter, and the more of your Pokemon that survived, the more you will receive. Providing you are able to successfully catch the Shadow Pokemon, you will then have the opportunity to purify the Pokemon with Stardust. Purified Pokemon are even stronger than their normal counterparts.

Jacob Siegal
Jacob Siegal Associate Editor

Jacob Siegal is Associate Editor at BGR, having joined the news team in 2013. He has over a decade of professional writing and editing experience, and helps to lead our technology and entertainment product launch and movie release coverage.

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