It’s the mobile game that put Pikachu out on the streets where he belongs. And it put Bulbasaur in a woodland clearing. And generally scattered Pokemon all over the globe, really.
Yes, Pokemon Go has been a roaring success for Niantic, and while it’s had its ups and downs over its two year history – including some rather chaotic fan events – the mobile app’s still drawing a healthy following. Indeed, recent reports have suggested that, after a bit of a lull, Pokemon Go‘s user base has climbed back to roughly where it was at launch in 2016.
To celebrate Pokemon Go‘s second birthday, Niantic’s adding extra Pikachu and Pichu critters for players to catch in the wild. And to ring the changes, they’ll be wearing shades and sun hats – just to differentiate them from all the other hatted electric rodents we’ve caught on previous occasions. (Our bags are already bulging with an assortment of Pikachus in santa hats, Pikachus in party hats, and so on.)
Niantic’s adding a few other trinkets to the game, too, including special clothing items available exclusively to players with gold Pikachu badges (earned by catching 300 or more rodents).
The real news, though, was slipped in at the end of Niantic’s recent release; the mythical Pokemon, Celebi, is finally going to be added to the game in “the near future.”
Like the elusive Mew before him, Celebi will only be available by completing Special Research tasks – so that’ll likely involve catching a set number of one Pokemon type, throwing curve balls, and so on. To capture Mew, the tallest task in the previous research mission tasked players with evolving a Magikarp – a process that required a whopping 400 candies to complete.
This was all fine if you happened to have all those candies already, but more daunting if, say, you’d only just evolved a Magikarp a few days before the Special Research mission was announced – which is precisely what happened to us.
Our advice? If you haven’t already, don’t evolve your Swablu, Wailmer or Feebas just yet. Those rascals at Niantic will probably pick one of those high-candy creatures as one of the evolve tasks in the Celebi research.
More on Pokemon Go as it comes in.