Pokémon Go and Celebi: How to finish Special Research fast!

Celebi is the Mythical Pokémon of Generation 2, first discovered in the Johto Region. Like the Generation 1 Mythical, Mew, encountering Celebi requires you to complete Special Research. In Pokémon Go, that's so far been limited to Pokémon Go Fest Chicago 2018, but it won't be long before Celebi is available to quest for around the world.

Here's what we know so far.

August 20, 2018: Celebi Special Research returns for everyone!

If you weren't at Pokémon Go Fest, your long Celebi wait is over!

Professor Willow needs your help once again! It seems he's been tracking the Mythical Pokémon Celebi, which has mysteriously appeared somewhere nearby. Can you help him locate the Time Travel Pokémon? Prepare yourself for August 20, when this Special Research becomes available worldwide!

Along the way to discovering Celebi's time-shifting nature, you'll encounter tasks that will test your skills as a Trainer. Complete tasks to gain XP, receive useful items, and even encounter certain Pokémon on your journey! You can begin completing Special Research on Celebi at any time as long as you have done the third group of tasks related to the Special Research on Mew, and actively finish tasks related to both at your own pace!

How do you finish the A Ripple in Time Special Research and get Celebi fast?

A Ripple in Time consists of eight sections with three tasks each.

Stage 1: Power up a Pokémon 5 times, Battle in a Gym 2 times, Battle in a Raid

This one is easy. If you're Stardust starved and have a Lucky Pokémon, power one up to save half the dust. If you just want it done, power up something with very low requirements, like a CP 10 common Pokément. If you want to get value from your power-ups, stick to Machamp, Kyogre, and Groudon this month.

For the Gym, pick any Gym from any team that's not yours and has more than 2 Pokémon on it. Then battle two Pokémon. Easy peasy.

For the Raid, if you belong to a Raid group or can find one on Facebook, WhatsApp, Discord, etc. in your area, just jump on the next available Raid. Otherwise, look for a Tier 1 or Tier 2 Raid in your area that you can do by yourself.

Current easy Raid options include:

  • Wailmer: Weak to Electric and Grass
  • Makuhita: Weak to Fairy, Flying, and Psychic
  • Medtite: Weak to Fairy, Flying, and Ghost
  • Magikarp: Weak to Electric and Grass
  • Alolan Exeggutor: Double weak to Ice
  • Kirlia: Weak to Poison, Steak, and Ghost
  • Roselia: Weak to Fire, Flying, Ice, and Psychic
  • Mawile: Weak to Fire and Ground

Reward: 10x Poké Balls, 1x Fast TM, 1x Super Incubator

Stage 2: Make 3 New Friends, Evolve and Evolved Grass-type Pokémon, Catch a Pokémon 3 Days in a Row

Here's where it can start getting a little confusing or annoying.

If you already have 3 Friends, you can un-friend and re-friend them to cheat your way past this task. You probably won't lose your Friendship level, but there's always the risk of a bug. Otherwise, if you have a local Facebook, WhatsApp, Discord, etc. group for Pokémon Go, see if you can find three new Friends to add. (Or three Friends you care less about losing status with to remove and re-add.)

What does "Evolve an Evolved Grass-type Pokémon" mean? It means evolving a second evolution into a third evolution. So, here are your options:

  • Evolve Ivysaur to Venusaur
  • Evolve Gloom to Vileplume or Bellosum
  • Evolve Weepinbell to Victreebell
  • Evolve Bayleaf to Magnanium
  • Evolve Skiploom to Jumpluff
  • Evolve Grovyle to Sceptile
  • Evolve Lombre to Ludicolo
  • Evolve Nuzleaf to Shiftry

Third-stage evolutions typically require 100 Candy. If you don't have enough, go out and catch as many as you can with Pinap Berries, then trade them for additional Candy until you hit the amount you need. Alternatively, you can spend Rare Candy if you have it, but it's better not to. You may need that for more challenging tasks, or elusive Pokémon later.

Catch a Pokémon 3 Days in a Row is simply a stalling tactic. It prevents people, including spoofers, from racing through the quest in a few hours. It doesn't matter which Pokémon you catch, and you can catch the same or different pokémon each day, you simply have to catch 3 Pokémon over the course of 3 days.

Reward: 1500 Star Dust, 1x Sun Stone (SAVE IT YOU'LL NEED IT FOR THE NEXT STAGE!!), 1x Raid Pass

Stage 3: Reach Level 25, Use Sun Stone to Evolve Gloom or Sunkern, Hatch 9 Eggs

If you're already level 25 or over, you'll automatically complete the first part. Otherwise, you'll want to use some Lucky Eggs and do back-to-back Legendary Raids (20K XP each). If you're close to any Great or Ultra Friends, get those with the Lucky Egg as well for 20K XP and 100K XP each. You can find more tricks in our how to get the most XP and level up fast guide.

Use the Sun Stone you got as a reward in Stage 2 to evolve a Gloom (after catching one or evolving one from an Oddish) or Sunkern (which should be super-easy to find during the current Jhoto event). If you used your Sun Stone already, you can get another from Field Research. Just keep spinning Poke Stop until you find the "Catch 3 Sunkern's for a Sun Stone" task and then get catching. (You can also get them randomly from Gifts or Stops, but there's no way of knowing how long that could take.)

Hatching 9 Eggs simply means spinning Poké Stops or opening Gifts until you fill up your Egg Storage, putting them all in Super Incubators, and walking until the 9th one hatches. If get 2KM eggs, that won't take long. 7KM and 10KM, obviously, will take longer. So will using standard Incubators or only walking one at a time. You'll need to decide if time is more valuable to you than Poké Coins for the Incubators.

Reward: Pokémon Encounter, King's Rock (DON'T USE IT, SAVE IT FOR SUBSEQUENT TASKS), Raid Pass.

Stage 4: Walk 10 KM with Eevee as your Buddy to earn Candy, Evolve Eevee into Espeon During the Day, Send 20 Gifts to Friends

Switch your Buddy to Eevee (if you don't have a good Espeon yet or a Shiny one, make sure you pick appropriately) and get walking as soon as this task becomes available to you. (If you walked that Eevee previously, it won't count towards this goal — new walking distance only.) Usually, you need 10KM and 2 (two) Candy, so make sure you get both.

Once you're done, make sure it's daytime in the game and hit evolve to get Espeon.

Sending 20 Gifts sounds easy but could be time-consuming. First, you can only hold 10 Gifts at a time. That means you need to spin enough Poké Stops and Gyms to your first 10 Gifts (any time — you can do this in advance), then give them away, then spin again to get another 10 Gifts, then give those away. Because you can only give each Friend one Gift a day, and because they will have had to have opened your previous Gift before you can send them a new one, you'll need at least 20 Friends you haven't send Gifts to already, or you'll need to yell at them to open their existing Gifts so you can send them more. (If you don't have 20 Friends, you'll need to get them or spend as many days as needed with your existing Friends to get to 20 Gifts.)

Reward: Pokémon Encounter, 2500 Stardust, 1x Steel Coat (DON'T USE IT, SAVE IT FOR SUBSEQUENT TASKS)

Stage 5: Walk 10 KM with Eevee as your Buddy to earn Candy, Evolve Eevee into Umbreon at Night, Trade a Pokémon

Switch your Buddy to Eevee (if you don't have a good Espeon yet or a Shiny one, make sure you pick appropriately) and get walking as soon as this task becomes available to you. (If you walked that Eevee previously, it won't count towards this goal — new walking distance only.) Usually, you need 10KM and 2 (two) Candy, so make sure you get both.

Once you're done, make sure it's nighttime in the game and hit evolve to get Umbreon.

Making a Trade is easy. (So glad they didn't make this "Get a Lucky Pokémon from a Trade — it would take so much longer.)

Reward: 1x Star Piece, 15x Pineap, 1x Upgrade (DON'T USE IT, SAVE IT FOR SUBSEQUENT TASKS)

Stage 6: Visit a PokéStop 7 Days in a Row, use 25 Pinap Berries While Catching Pokémon, Use Items to Evolve Pokémon 2 Times

Waiting 3 days wasn't enough for you? How about 7 days? Sigh. That's what it'll take to spin 7 PokéStops in 7 Days to complete this task. And, to make things worse, if you miss a day, you'll have to start over. Double sigh.

25 Pokémon with Pinap Berries is just a grind. Get through it. Use Ultra Balls if you have them so you don't waste your time with escapes and flees.

Then, if you dutifully saved your Evolution Items from previous rewards, use them on 2 Pokémon to get two evolutions and be on your way. (If not, find the Field Research tasks to earn them by catching Sunkern.)

  • Sun Stone: Evolves Gloom into Bellossum and Sunkern into Sunflora.
  • King's Rock: Evolves Poliwhirl into Politoed and Slowpoke into Slowking
  • Metal Coat: Evolves Onix into Steelix and Scyther into Scizor
  • Dragon Scale: Evolves Seadra into Kingdra
  • Up Grade: Evolves Porygon into Porygon 2

How to get and use Evolution Items in Pokémon Go

Stage 7: Catch 40 Grass-type or Psychic-type Pokémon, Make and Excellent Curve Ball Throw, Get a Gold Johto Badge

There's a large assortment of Pokémon you can catch to make your way to 40 Grass- or Psychic types. Even excluding the ones not currently available (Legendaries not currently in Raids and Celebi itself), be on the look out for:

  1. Bulbasaur
  2. Ivysaur
  3. Venusaur
  4. Alolan Raichu
  5. Oddish
  6. Gloom
  7. Vileplume
  8. Paras
  9. Parasect
  10. Abra
  11. Kadabra
  12. Alakazam
  13. Bellsprout
  14. Weepinbell
  15. Victreebel
  16. Slowpoke
  17. Slowbro
  18. Drowzee
  19. Hypno
  20. Exeggcute
  21. Exeggutor
  22. Alolan Exeggutor
  23. Tangela
  24. Starmie
  25. Mr. Mime
  26. Jynx
  27. Mewtwo (Ex-Raid only)
  28. Mew (Mew quest only)
  29. Chikorita
  30. Bayleef
  31. Meganium
  32. Natu
  33. Xatu
  34. Bellossom
  35. Hoppip
  36. Skiploom
  37. Jumpluff
  38. Sunkern
  39. Sunflora
  40. Espeon
  41. Slowking
  42. Unown
  43. Wobbuffet
  44. Girafarig
  45. Smoochum
  46. Treecko
  47. Grovyle
  48. Sceptile
  49. Lotad
  50. Lombre
  51. Ludicolo
  52. Seedot
  53. Nuzleaf
  54. Shiftry
  55. Ralts
  56. Kirlia
  57. Gardevoir
  58. Shroomish
  59. Breloom
  60. Meditite
  61. Medicham
  62. Roselia
  63. Spoink
  64. Grumpig
  65. Cacnea
  66. Cacturne
  67. Lunatone
  68. Solrock
  69. Baltoy
  70. Claydol
  71. Lileep
  72. Cradily
  73. Tropius
  74. Chimecho
  75. Wynaut
  76. Beldum
  77. Metang
  78. Metagross

To make an excellent curveball throw, look for a Pokémon with a really large target area, like any Legendary Raid Boss, or a wild encounter with the likes of Wailer. Use regular Poké Balls, so you'll get repeated chances if they break out, and then just take your time.

If you know the trick for setting target size, or you want to learn it, it can help make sure you get Excellent and not just Great throws:

Once you get the hang of hitting Great or even Excelllent throws, you can up your odds by setting the circle size so it's ready when you want to throw.

  1. Touch and hold the Poké Ball until the target circle shrinks down to Excellent size.
  2. Wait until the Pokémon starts to attack.
  3. Spin the Poké Ball so you can curve it.
  4. As the Pokémon gets to about 3/4 through its attack, throw the curve ball as close to dead center as you can.

The target circle will remain the same size you set, so if you hit it correctly, you'll score the Excellent throw and associated bonus.


To get your Johto medal, you need to catch 70 different Gen 2 Pokémon originally discovered in the Johto region.

  1. Chikorita: Grass - 801
  2. Bayleef: Grass - 1296
  3. Meganium: Grass - 2227
  4. Cyndaquil: Fire - 831
  5. Quilava: Fire - 1484
  6. Typhlosion: Fire - 2686
  7. Totodile: Water - 1011
  8. Croconaw: Water - 1598
  9. Feraligatr: Water - 2721
  10. Sentret: Normal - 519
  11. Furret: Normal - 1667
  12. Hoothoot: Normal / Flying - 640
  13. Noctowl: Normal / Flying - 2040
  14. Ledyba: Bug / Flying - 663
  15. Ledian: Bug / Flying - 1275
  16. Spinarak: Bug / Poison - 685
  17. Ariados: Bug / Poison - 1636
  18. Crobat: Poison / Flying - 2466
  19. Chinchou: Water / Electric - 1067
  20. Lanturn: Water / Electric - 2077
  21. Pichu: Electric - 376
  22. Cleffa: Normal - 620
  23. Igglybuff: Normal / Fairy - 512
  24. Togepi: Fairy - 540
  25. Togetic: Fairy / Flying - 1543
  26. Natu: Psychic / Flying - 925
  27. Xatu: Psychic / Flying - 1975
  28. Mareep: Electric - 887
  29. Flaaffy: Electric - 1402
  30. Ampharos: Electric - 2695
  31. Bellossom: Grass - 2108
  32. Marill: Water / Fairy - 420
  33. Azumarill: Water / Fairy - 1503
  34. Sudowoodo: Rock - 2065
  35. Politoed: Water - 2371
  36. Hoppip: Grass / Flying - 508
  37. Skiploom: Grass / Flying - 882
  38. Jumpluff: Grass / Flying - 1553
  39. Aipom: Normal - 1188
  40. Sunkern: Grass - 316
  41. Sunflora: Grass - 2048
  42. Yanma: Bug / Flying - 1326
  43. Wooper: Water / Ground - 596
  44. Quagsire: Water / Ground - 1929
  45. Espeon: Psychic - 3000
  46. Umbreon: Dark - 2052
  47. Murkrow: Dark / Flying - 1392
  48. Slowking: Water / Psychic - 2482
  49. Misdreavus: Ghost - 1781
  50. Unown: Psychic - 1022
  51. Wobbuffet: Psychic - 1024
  52. Girafarig: Normal / Psychic - 1863
  53. Pineco: Bug - 1045
  54. Forretress: Bug Steel - 2263
  55. Dunsparce: Normal - 1615
  56. Gligar: Ground / Flying - 1758
  57. Steelix: Steel / Ground - 2439
  58. Snubbull: Fairy - 1124
  59. Granbull: Fairy - 2440
  60. Qwilfish: Water / Poison - 1910
  61. Scizor: Bug / Steel - 2801
  62. Shuckle: Bug / Rock - 300
  63. Heracross: Bug / Fighting - 2938
  64. Sneasel: Dark / Ice - 1868
  65. Teddiursa: Normal - 1184
  66. Ursaring: Normal - 2760
  67. Slugma: Fire - 750
  68. Magcargo: Fire / Rock - 1543
  69. Swinub: Ice / Ground - 663
  70. Piloswine: Ice / Ground - 2284
  71. Corsola: Water / Rock - 1214
  72. Remoraid: Water - 749
  73. Octillery: Water - 2124
  74. Delibird: Ice / Flying - 937
  75. Mantine: Water / Flying - 2032
  76. Skarmory: Steel / Flying - 2032
  77. Houndour: Dark / Fire - 1110
  78. Houndoom: Dark / Fire - 2529
  79. Kingdra: Water / Dragon - 2424
  80. Phanpy: Ground - 1175
  81. Donphan: Ground - 3022
  82. Porygon2: Normal - 2546
  83. Stantler: Normal - 1988
  84. Tyrogue: Fighting - 404
  85. Hitmontop: Fighting - 1905
  86. Smoochum: Ice / Psychic - 1230
  87. Elekid: Electric - 1073
  88. Magby: Fire - 1178
  89. Miltank: Normal - 2312
  90. Blissey: Normal - 3219
  91. Raikou: Electric - 3349 (Field Research Award until August 31)
  92. Entei: Fire - 3412 (Field Research Award from September 1-30)
  93. Suicune: Water - 2823 (Not currently available)
  94. Larvitar: Rock / Ground - 904
  95. Pupitar: Rock / Ground - 1608
  96. Tyranitar: Rock / Dark - 3670
  97. Lugia: Psychic / Flying - 3598
  98. Ho-Oh: Fire / Flying - 4650 (In raids until August 27)

What happens if you already got Celebi at Pokémon Go Fest Chicago 2018 back in July?

If you already caught your Celebi at Pokémon Go Fest Chicago 2018 back in July, you don't get another one. Sorry. What you do get is a shot a more candy:

For those who have already completed the exclusive Pokémon GO Fest Special Research and have obtained the Time Travel Pokémon, completing this new Special Research will earn you a new bounty of Candy to power up your Celebi.

A re-roll might have been nicer for those with relatively low stat Celebi but Candy is still Candy.

So, um, who's Celebi?

Celebi is the Mythical Pokémon from Generation 2, like Mew — the subject of the previous Special Research Quest — was the Mythical Pokémon of Generation 1.

Here's what the official Pokémon site has to say:

This Pokémon came from the future by crossing over time. It is thought that so long as Celebi appears, a bright and shining future awaits us.

And, from Bulbapedia:

Celebi is a green fairy-like creature. It has round toeless feet, three-fingered hands, and clear wings on its back. It has a round head that comes to a curved point. It has large baby-blue eyes with thick black rings around them, and a pair of green antennae with blue tips.

Often found in forests, Celebi is a Mythical Pokémon, known in legend as the "Voice of the Forest." It is able to travel through time and exist simultaneously throughout time, and plant life flourishes wherever it has been. As seen in the anime, it is able to bring deceased Celebi back to life and restore plants to perfect health. It was shown in Pokémon Colosseum that Celebi has the power to instantly cause the Purification of any Shadow Pokémon and can be summoned at Relic Forest with the melody of a Time Flute. Despite living in forests as its guardian, Celebi only shows itself in areas and times of peace. It has been regarded that as long as Celebi are seen throughout the world, a prosperous and bright future is still in store for the Pokémon World.

How did you catch Mew at Pokémon Go Fest Chicago 2018?

Celebi was originally made available to players who attended Pokémon Go Fest Chicago 2018. These were the tasks they had to complete to encounter Celebi and get additional Celebi Candy and rewards:

Quest 1

  1. Spin 3 PokeStops or Gyms: 500 XP.
  2. Earn 1 Candy Walking your Buddy: 500 XP.
  3. Catch 15 Pokemon: 500 XP.

Bonus: 1000 Stardust, 50 Poké Balls, 3 Incense.

Best place to do this was right at the entrances and around the team lounges.

Quest 2

  1. Catch 10 Fire-type Pokémon: Torkoal.
  2. Catch 10 Water-type Pokémon: Ludiculo.
  3. Catch 10 Grass-type Pokémon: Shiftry.
  4. Catch 10 Steel-type Pokémon: Metagross.
  5. Catch 10 Rock-type Pokémon. Aggron.
  6. Catch 10 Ice-type Pokémon. Walrein.

Bonus: 2000 Stardust, 20 Ultra Balls, 3 Super Incubators.

The "Walk Through the Park" aspect of Go Fest was ideally suited to completing these quests, since each environment had several of the necessary types, along with some dual-types that were particularly efficient.

Quest 3

  1. Catch 7 Unown: 1500 XP.
  2. Spin 3 Pokestops or Gyms: 1500 XP.
  3. Hatch 3 eggs. 1500 XP.

Bonus: 3000 Stardust, 10 Golden Razz Berries.

The entrance and team lounge areas are the best places to find Unown and spin stops.

Catch Celebi!

Same deal as Mew, but there's no invisibility to deal with. So, you are in AR mode, and you do have to hit it three times, but you can see Celebi the whole time.

Quest 4

  1. Catch 5 Plusle: 2000 XP
  2. Catch 5 Minun: 2000 XP

Bonus: 4000 Stardust, 10 Pinap Berries, 20 Celebi Candies.

Depending on when you needed to complete this part, it could be super easy or super frustrating. The most reliable place to get tons of Plusle and at least a few Minun at a time was the Benjamin Franklin statue near South Entrance.

Claim rewards. (Yeah, seriously!)

Make sure you crack and Egg and drop a Star Piece before doing this one.

  1. 2018 XP.
  2. 2018 XP.
  3. 2018 XP

Bonus: 5000 Stardust, 3 Premium Raid Passes, 3 Lucky Eggs.

What's the best moveset for Celebi?

Celebi is a Psychic- Grass-type Pokémon that has tons of potential... but lacks the moveset pool to really make a dent. Confusion, which gets STAB (same type attack bonus) is better than charge beam as a fast move. Dazzling Gleam, a Fairy-type move, out scores both Psychic and the plodding cannon that is Hyper Beam, even with Psychic's STAB.

Celebi's current lack of any Grass-type Fast or Charge moves means it offers nothing as a Grass attacker at the moment. That could change any time Pokémon Go wants it to, though.

Best Moveset: Confusion + Dazzling Gleam


Can you quest for Celebi more than once?

Not so far. Like Mew, once you finish your quest, you get your Celebi, and that's it. Which is frustrating when its stats are... less than stellar.

Any Celebi or Mythical Discovery Field Research questions?

If you have any questions about completing the Mythical Special Research quest or catching Celebi in Pokémon Go, drop them in the comments below!

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