GO Battle League Season 5 Review In Pokémon GO

GO Battle League was entirely different in Pokémon GO for Season Five. Instead of cycling through Great, Ultra, Master, and all leagues for weeks, it featured three brand-new cups that lasted a week each, allowing players to rank up based on their number of wins rather than rank. Did these changes and new cups work for GO Battle League, or was this a failed experiment in Pokémon GO?

GO Battle League promo image in Pokémon GO. Credit: Niantic
GO Battle League promo image in Pokémon GO. Credit: Niantic

First, let's break down each cup added to Pokémon GO for GO Battle League Season Five:

  • Little Cup: 9/10. This was the most fun GO Battle League has been since its inception. By limiting the CP to 500 per Pokémon, this made for challenging and, let's be honest, adorable battles. Little Cup was so fun, even with Bronzor being the beast that it was, that it should become its own, permanent aspect of GO Battle League. Little League, guys. Come on.
  • Kanto Cup: 6/10. While this wasn't a personal favorite of mine due to it being a Great League copy with the 1500 CP limit, featuring certain generations in limited cups is a good idea. To improve upon this, allowing Ultra and Master League versions of this Cup would be a good start. Also, allowing Alolan variants of Kanto species muddied the waters for this Cup. It would be great to see Johto, Hoenn, Sinnoh, Unova, Kalos, and so-on cups in the future with alterations made.
  • Catch Cup: 0/10. An absolutely awful idea. The Catch Cup goes against the spirit of Pokémon GO, tasking players with investing only in Pokémon they just caught rather than using the buddies they've built up over years. While it was just a weak, it was a mess of a cup. It would have been fine if it happened during the Kalos launch to show off new species but, as is, this Cup was a bad idea that was poorly applied.

The new ranking system, though, was amazing, allowing players who hadn't previously been able to reach Rank 10 to do so and catch a Pikachu Libre. The addition of Legendary Pokémon to the reward pool was a great return to the one-time-glory of quarantine era GO Battle League, but unfortunately, they were made to be prohibitively rare.

Even with its highs and lows, GO Battle League Season 5 will be remembered as a fun experiment before major changes come to the platform with a new ranking system in Season 6.

About Theo Dwyer

Theo Dwyer writes about comics, film, and games.