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Pokemon Go Team Go Rocket GiovanniSource: Niantic

This month's Special Research has been extended through April to give players additional time to encounter Shadow Entei.

Team Go Rocket is back for March and April, 2020 and this time Giovanni has captured the Legendary beast, Entei! By completing the Special Research: The Shadowy Threat Grows, you can defeat Giovanni, rescue Shadow Entei, and Purify the Legendary Beast. Even better, this month will include a Team Go Rocket Takeover on Saturday, March 7, from 2 to 5 PM local time!

What is Team Go Rocket anyway?

Based on the original antagonists of Pokémon, Team Rocket is an infamous criminal organization led by Giovanni. The group seeks to steal valuable Pokémon and force those Pokémon to further Giovanni's endeavors. In Pokémon Go, the group is much of the same, known as Team Go Rocket. Basically, they're the bad guys who've been missing from the game since day one. They're here now, and once a month, you can complete a Special Research to take on their leader, Giovanni and potentially rescue a Legendary Shadow Pokémon from him.

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Can I start right away?

Probably but, unlike some other Special Research, players must complete specific Special Researches to begin The Shadowy Threat Grows. If you haven't completed A Troubling Situation, Looming in the Shadows, A Challenging Development, The Take-Over Continues, and A Professor's Work is Never Done, you'll have to finish those first. Fortunately, A Troubling Situation is pretty quick, and we have a guide that will walk you through it fast. Looming in the Shadows, A Challenging Development, The Take-Over Continues, and A Professor's Work is Never Done take longer - one month each, to be exact. However, we also have guides to walk you through each of them.

You must also be at least Level eight to begin this Special Research.

The Shadowy Threat Grows

Once you've completed the previous Team Go Rocket Special Research, you will find The Shadowy Threat Grows in your list of Special Research quests. This Special Research is split up into six steps of three tasks each.

Step One

  1. Spin 10 PokéStops for Golem Encounter
  2. Defeat 3 Team GO Rocket Grunts for 500 XP
  3. Catch 1 Shadow Pokémon for 500 XP

Completion Rewards: 500 Stardust, 10 Poké Balls, 10 Razz Berries

Step Two

  1. Spin a PokéStop 3 days in a row for 750 XP
  2. Purify 5 Shadow Pokémon for 750 XP
  3. Win 5 raids for 750 XP

Completion rewards: 1,000 Stardust, 3 Hyper Potions, and 3 Revives

Step Three

Pokemon Go Team Rocket Mysterious ComponentSource: Niantic

  1. Use six super effective Charged Attacks in Gym Bttles for 1,000 XP
  2. Win three Great League Trainer Battles against another Trainer for 1,000 XP
  3. Defeat six Go Rocket Grunts for 1,000 XP

Completion rewards: 1,500 Stardust, 15 Great Balls, and five Pinap Berries

Step Four

Pokemon Go Rocket RadarSource: Niantic

  1. Defeat Team Go Rocket Leader Arlo for 1,250 XP
  2. Defeat Team Go Rocket Leader Cliff for 1,250 XP
  3. Defeat Team Go Rocket Leader Sierra for 1,250 XP

Completion rewards: 2,000 Stardust, 1 Super Rocket Radar, and three Golden Razz Berries

Step Five

Pokemon Go Super Rocket RadarSource: Niantic

  1. Find the Team Go Rocket Boss for 2,500 Stardust
  2. Battle the Team Go Rocket Boss for 1,500 XP
  3. Defeat the Team Go Rocket Boss for three Silver Pinap Berries

Completion rewards: 3,000 Stardust, one Charged TM, and one Fast TM

Step Six

  1. Autocompleted for 2,000 XP
  2. Autocompleted for 2,000 XP
  3. Autocompleted for 2,000 XP

Completion rewards: three Max Revives, 20 Ultra Balls, and three Rare Candies

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The Leaders of Team Go Rocket

Part of the Looming Shadows update added a new feature to Pokémon Go: Team Go Rocket Hideouts. By assembling Rocket Radars, players can track down Team Go Rocket Hideouts, where they can challenge the Leaders of Team Go Rocket. In addition to completing Special Research, defeating Team Go Rocket Leaders come with plenty of potential rewards, including:

  • Max Revive
  • Revive
  • Max Potion
  • Unova Stone
  • Sinnoh Stone
  • Encounter with Shadow Pokémon, some of which have the potential to be shiny

While a Rocket Radar is necessary to find the Team Go Rocket Hideouts, once a player has completed their first, additional Rocket Radars will be able to be crafted or purchased for Pokécoins from the Pokémon Shop. Once equipped, the Hideouts will be visible on the map and can be challenged in the same way that players challenge the Team Go Rocket Grunts, but the Leaders are much stronger and use their shields. Don't worry if you don't beat the Team Go Rocket Leader the first time. You can heal your Pokémon, power them up, and try again until you can defeat them. For a more in-depth dive into the possible counters for the Leaders of Team Go Rocket, see our guide.


Team Go Rocket CliffSource: Niantic

The first of the Team Go Rocket Executives, Cliff can bring the following Shadow Pokémon into battle:

The best counters for going up against Cliff are Moltres, Venusaur, Rhyperior, and Machamp.


Team Go Rocket SierraSource: Niantic

The second of the Team Go Rocket Executives, Sierra can bring the following Shadow Pokémon into battle:

The best counters for going up against Sierra are Darkrai, Machamp, and Yanmega.


Pokemon Go Team Rocket ArloSource: Niantic

The third of the Team Go Rocket Executives and former friend of Team Valor's Candela, Arlo can bring the following Shadow Pokémon into battle:

The best counters for going up against Arlo are Moltres, Rhyperior or Venusaur, and Regice.


Pokemon Go Team Go Rocket GiovanniSource: Niantic

The Boss of Team Go Rocket himself, Giovanni can bring Legendary Shadow Pokémon into battle. Currently, Entei is in his third slot, but that usually changes each month. Because this Special Research was extended, he will likely have Suicune in May. The Pokémon Giovanni has and the Shadow Pokémon you can rescue from him is not dependent on which Special Research you're working on. His current lineup includes:

The best Pokémon to counter Giovanni are Rhyperior, Roserade, and Kyogre.

Unlike the other Leaders of Team Go Rocket, Giovanni can only be found using the Super Rocket Radar. This can be obtained by completing Looming in the Shadows Special Research once per calendar month. The Super Rocket Radar will lead players to several potential encounters, but many of those encounters will be decoys, as opposed to Giovanni himself. Keep trying, and eventually, you will find the real Team Go Rocket Boss!

Pokemon Go Team Go Rocket BalloonSource: Niantic

Any questions about The Shadowy Threat Grows?

Do you have any questions about the Special Research, The Shadowy Threat Grows, or taking on the Leaders of Team Go Rocket? Drop us a comment below, and be sure to check out our Complete Pokédex, as well as our other Pokémon Guides so you too can become a Pokémon Master!

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Pokemon Go Banner Source: Niantic

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