The full-scale invasion of Team Go Rocket is working and Pokemon Go trainers are taking notice.
Team Go Rocket has invaded Pokestops in game, and have caused some shenanigans in New York City. The group is set to take over every Pokestop on July 28 from 4-5 p.m.
Since the team debuted in Pokemon Go, trainers have battled Rocket grunts who have taken over Pokestops in 3-on-3 matches, and captured the Shadow Pokemon they leave behind.
I’ll come out and say it, defeating Rocket grunts are not easy. In my eight battles against Rocket grunts, there have only been two occasions when all three of my Pokemon were left standing. I lost my second battle against a grunt days ago.
I am not an elite trainer or anything – I recently reached level 34. Still, I was not expecting for Go Rocket grunts to be challenging. I’m not the only one in this, Forbes.com Senior Contributor Dave Thier, who is level 40, has had some challenging go-arounds with Rocket grunts.
Battling Go Rocket grunts is not easy, but there are ways trainers can prepare themselves for a fight.
One of the challenges in a Rocket grunt battle is their team is completely random. Trainers won’t know the type of Pokemon they have on hand until the grunt releases their first Pokemon.
Thier recommends having Pokemon who know fighting moves on hand to counter the grunts. The most effective Pokemon I have had in Grunt battles are ones who are in the 2,500 to over 3,000 range and they are effective against normal types – mainly my Donphan and Slaking. One
Pokemon that has helped me in some close calls is my Glacion, which is a little over 2,500 CP – but that is usually when I have a grunt who has grass, flying or normal type Pokemon.
One thing that helps trainers during a battle are the two barriers that block a Shadow Pokemon’s charged attack. Trainers will want to try and win the first fight without using a barrier, then utilize it against the grunt’s second Pokemon.
Speaking of charged attacks, the Rocket grunt battles use the new swiping mechanic for charged attacks. When a trainer’s Pokemon is ready for a charged attack, they should swipe as quick as they can to increase the damage.
It’s important for folks to prepare for post-battle. Trainers will want to make sure they have plenty of revives and potions on hand in case they lose one or all three Pokemon during the fight. They should also make sure they have berries on hand to help them capture the Shadow Pokemon left behind.
The addition of Team Go Rocket and battles have made for a fun addition to Pokemon Go. Although grunt battles can be frustrating for trainers who don’t like to lose a Pokemon battle, it encourages folks to dedicate some of their time to train and power up their Pokemon.