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Pokémon GO Event Review: Ultra Unlock Part Three: Sword & Shield

The Ultra Unlock Part Three: Sword & Shield event is wrapping up in Pokémon GO. Let's see what worked and what didn't work in this post-GO Fest mega event!

Zamazenta in Pokémon GO. Credit: Niantic
Zamazenta in Pokémon GO. Credit: Niantic

What worked in this Pokémon GO event

  • Shiny releases! Wow, we got a wave of Shinies here, didn't we? Galarian Meowth, Farfetch'd, Weezing, and Stunfisk all had their Shinies released and they were available in raids and Eggs throughout the event. This was definitely the highlight of the event, despite some online chatter complaining about raid/egg-only Shinies. This is how the Alolan Shinies were mostly released and this is how Ultra Unlock originally did the Generation One regionals as well (minus the raids). Personally, I loved it.
  • The wild spawns were relatively strong, with a strong Trubbish presence offering a nice chance at a rare and desirable Shiny and plentiful evolved forms like Kingler. Great for Candy-farming.
  • The Galarian reveal, which saw Hoopa essentially skip us ahead in time to release a few Galarian Pokémon including the Legendary Zacian and Zamazenta, is probably the most narrative Pokémon GO has gotten in an event. I loved this and was genuinely surprised which, as a Day One player, I find quite impressive.

What didn't work in this Pokémon GO event

  • Mega Raids! Oh, man, oh man. We were overloaded with Mega Raids to a huge degree. To put it conservatively, at least one-third of the raids I saw in the second week were Mega Pidgeot raids. During this time, most of the desirable Pokémon were in one-star and three-star raids, so it seemed very much as if Niantic were using Mega Raids as filler. If Niantic wasn't doing that and actually thought we'd be interested in a huge wave of Mega Pidgeot raids during a time when Shiny Galarian Meowth, Stunfisk, and Ponyta are available, they should definitely play a bit more Pokémon GO in office.
  • Seriously, come on!


Overall, Ultra Unlock Part Three: Sword & Shield succeeded in two ways: the culmination GO Fest 2021 and the lead-in to the Hoopa-themed Season of Mischief. I'm leaving this event mostly satisfied and majorly excited for what's to come.

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Theo DwyerAbout Theo Dwyer

Theo Dwyer writes about comics, film, and games.
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