Pokemon GO February 2019 rebalance survival guide

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This post is a complete guide Pokemon GO’s big rebalance patch that just came out! Niantic has surprised us with new Pokemon move sets, move damage buffs and nerfs, new Sinnoh Stone Pokemon evolution and raid boss stamina changes

Well, this certainly came out of left field! With little warning, Niantic has decided to drop another wave of Sinnoh Pokémon comprised of the gender-exclusive evolutions like Gallade, the move-locked evolutions like Yanmega, and some other miscellaneous wild Pokémon. In addition, in the announcement of this new wave, and this recent Community Note, Niantic has made some big changes including moveset changes that are already live and making raids more difficult, but we will get into all of that in just a moment.

New Sinnoh Pokémon

We’ve looked at the reports flooding in and we got quite the new wave on our hands! We have confirmed:

Now for those of you confused on your female Kirlia and Male Snorunts and Combee that still have the options to evolve, Niantic has already sent out an explanation on that one, stating that it is an issue and the preview should not exist.

For those that are curious like I was though, the evolution does not work, it throws up an error and you cannot have a Female Gallade.

Moveset Changes

No legacy movesets this time around, but we have a full list on the new moves that have been added to the movepools of various Pokémon. While most are coverage options for PVP and good ones at that, there are some that will also get the interest for raiders out there in the world. Bold will indicate the new moves in the movepool, Legacy or Exclusive moves are not included, and this will all be updated to our database ASAP.

* On Chimecho, this is not a typo at the moment. Currently, Chimecho knows Psyshock twice in the gamemaster. It originally knew Psyshock before the changes which is odd considering that Niantic directly mentioned Psyshock as an addition to its movepool. 

There are some immediate standouts in this list that change some raiding aspects dramatically, including:

  • Grass Knot Roserade is easily going to be one of the best Grass types for a long time to come. It might not be bulky, but it will be a direct improvement to the recent Grass Knot Breloom and will give Frenzy Plant Sceptile a run for its money in the future while outdoing Frenzy Plant Venusaur Now.
  • While none of these are, initially anyway, particularly substantial, there are going to be several new B-Team raiders on the scene, with Aerodactyl, Kabutops, Donphan, and Drapion now having access to STAB (Same Type Attack Bonus) moves for Fast and Charge attacks.
  • Peck/Sky Attack Honchkrow is poised now to be one of the best Flying types in the game. It might not have the total damage output, but its DPS is in the leagues of Rayquaza and Sky Attack Moltres.
  • Ho-Oh, as a special mention in all of this, now has access to Hidden Power, which in theory can allow for it to get a Fire fast move that it has so desperately needed.

Rebalancing Notes

Niantic today announced, and has now deployed, several rebalances to all facets of the game, from raids and gyms to PVP. For ease of reading, I will summarize them in a quick list, and go into further detail individually.

  • Tier 3 through 5 Raid Bosses have had a 1.2x multiplier added to their stamina, making the raids by default harder due to the increased health pool, and therefore making higher level raids require more players.
  • Raid Battles will reward more stardust.
  • Several moves have had changes for PVP, with the vast majority of changes being damage buffs to several moves.
  • As covered above, coverage and STAB moves have been added to the pools of Pokémon to make them more competitively viable, or be counters to well known Pokémon in the leagues.

Raid Bosses have been buffed, most likely due to the influx of low-person raids, such as Absol and Tyranitar solos, that have occurred since the Super Effective changes. To illustrate this, we have the before and after on Raid Boss CPs for this current rotation.

All of these have the common thread that the Post CP matches the Prior CP when you times the Stamina Value, a preset value for Raid Bosses at each tier as defined in this article, by 1.2 what it normally is. This essentially means we have some new Stamina values for tiers 3-5, so let’s throw them up to compare:

Tier Old Stamina Value New Stamina
Tier 3 3,000 3600
Tier 4 7,500 9000
Tier 5 12,500 15000

As for moves, as stated many moves had stats changed in the gamemaster. The majority of changes were to buff damage of moves that are not generally good in PVP, such as Waterfall, with the few exceptions here and there. Here are all the changes:

Move Before After
Smack Down Power: 10 Power: 12
Waterfall Power: 10 Power: 12
Confusion Power: 12 Power: 16
Frost Breath Power: 6 Power: 7
Ice Shard Power: 8 Power: 9
Razor Leaf Power: 8 Power: 11
Body Slam Power: 50 Power: 60
Dazzling Gleam Power: 100 Power: 110
Flamethrower
  • Power: 70
  • energyDelta: -50
  • Power: 90
  • energyDelta: -55
Ice Punch Power: 50 Power: 55
Psyshock Power: 65 Power: 70
Iron Head Power: 60 Power: 70
Thunder Punch
  • Power: 45
  • energyDelta: -35
  • Power: 55
  • energyDelta: -40
Thunderbolt
  • energyDelta: -45
  • Power: 80
  • energyDelta: -55
  • Power: 90
Shadow Claw energyDelta: 7 energyDelta: 8

This was quite a surprising day, being one that has easily changed the game on all fronts. While the difficulty increase for raids might not sit well, the additional changes to movesets will introduce new fighters on all fronts of the game. Stay tuned to Go Hub to see how much this changes the PVP meta!

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