Pokémon GO's gyms were temporarily disabled a few days ago to prepare for their major revamp, but there were those trainers who weren't content to sit back and wait. Instead, these data miners started digging deep into the code to track hints of upcoming changes.
Aside from the major additions which have already been officially announced, a Reddit post uncovered fifteen extras that could be making their way to the new mobile game versions, including Legendary Pokémon, a "Healing Mode," and Gym Badge Tiers.
In case you missed it, the official release notes include:
- Gym features significantly updated to add the all-new motivation system.
- Added new Gym Badge feature.
- Added in-app and push notification system for Gyms.
- Added Raid Battles, a new cooperative gameplay experience.
- Added four new items available only by completing Raid Battles.
- Added Raids tab to Nearby screen.
- Added search functionality to Pokémon collection screen.
- Added visual indicator to unvisited PokéStops.– The Pokémon GO team
With all of that and the overview of "What's changing in Pokémon GO?" covering everything in further detail, we turn our attention to dronpes—The Silph Road subreddit moderator who posted an exciting breakdown of the data-mined content and what we could look forward to in the new update.
Possibly the most awaited point referenced by dronpes is to the reference of legendary Pokémon appearing in the code. These seem to hint that Raid encounters will require a 'Legendary Raid Ticket' and may award a 'Legendary Battles Won' badge. "We currently believe you cannot deploy legendaries to defend Gyms," says dronpes, speculating that this decision should help prevent cheating with bot accounts.
Other snippets of code mention a Battle Team, which may suggest we can assign a set of Pokémon to named teams for swift deployment. A limit to MaxPlayerTotalDeployedPokemon also seems to restrict bot usage, or may simply be a crowd control measure.
The Raid mechanics also reveal a great deal of complexity, though there is a 5 'Raid Levels' system which is as yet unexplained. Nonetheless, 'Premier Balls,' which are awarded on completion of a successful raid (and are needed to capture the Raid Boss), are assigned based on factors such as Gym ownership, damage percentage inflicted by your team, individual damage contribution, and so on. We also see the introduction of Raid Lobbies, which enable public and private access.
With code for new push notifications and more useful inbox messages, as well as some cosmetic changes to the map appearance and Gym rosters, Pokémon GO is looking like it will deliver a more polished experience following the latest update. It looks like you can also see where your Gym Badges are from at a glance, and you can also sort them based on name, defending, and score.
We also have glimpses of Berry logistics, which are now much more important under the new Motivation system. "They contribute to your Gym Badge score, and now have their own tutorial," explains dronpes, so we are likely to see a more sophisticated feeding schedule for our Pokémon fosterlings.
Lastly, Gyms see a big overhaul with this update, and it comes as no surprise that the APK code reflects that. A new 'Healing Mode' will allow potions and revive items to be accessible from the Gym before battle, eliminating the time-consuming method of navigating multiple screens in the current iteration. Gym Badges will upgrade from Vanilla to Bronze, Silver, and Gold tiers, and these will affect the items received from spinning the Photo Discs at Gyms—with multiple levels of bonus loot available at friendly Gyms to increase the payout.
What a dizzying array of information! We can only hope to start playing with these new features as soon as possible. How do you like Niantic's new direction? Is it too little too late, or will you be booting up the Pokémon GO app again? Let us know in the comments below.
Source: Silph Road subreddit