We're all fragmented and isolated in the dreary grip of the COVID-19 virus, but Pokemon Go is thriving even without its social elements. When the virus started making headlines in North America around March 2020, studio Niantic quickly retooled Pokemon Go to make it a more palatable single player experience.
It was the smartest move at the time, but it also forced Niantic to delay some of its bigger plans for Pokemon Go. But now that Niantic has its COVID survival strategies solidly in place, Pokemon Go is ready for its biggest content update yet.
Niantic unveiled its "GO Beyond" campaign via a group call on November 17. Starting November 30, look forward to a new level cap, season-specific events, and the arrival of Pokemon from X and Y's Kalos region. That means we can get our hands on the region's starters: Fennekin, Chespin, and Froakie. We're only days away from seeing Greninja guarding Gyms and participating in remote Raids. I still love and support poor neglected Delphox, though.
The arrival of the Kalos region PokeDex is a big deal, but the new level cap is an even bigger deal. Finally, players who've hit level 40—and there are a lot of them—can strive for the new cap, level 50, by completing challenges. These tests instruct players to catch lots of Pokemon in a single day, evolve one of each Eevee type, and defeating difficult opponents. Players who earn level 50 before December 31 will earn legacy rewards like a terrifying but wonderful Gyrados hat.
GO Beyond also some quality of life improvements on board for us schmucks whose levels are straggling somewhere in the mid-30s. Under-40 players will earn more experience points for nearly everything they do, from catching Pokemon to hatching eggs. Just use one of those Lucky Eggs you're uselessly hoarding, and you'll build up sufficient experience points in no time.
With the long winter coming and the continued onslaught of COVID-19, it's unclear when we'll all get to gather in the sunshine and play Pokemon GO with friends, just as it was meant to be played. For now, Niantic is keeping the revised game in tip-top shape, so come November 30, catch some new starters, participate in some remote raids, and get to work shattering that level 40 cap.