Pokémon GO Fashion Week Longchamp Event Review

The Fashion Week event wraps up in Pokémon GO tomorrow, ending the week-long celebration of the collaboration between the Pokémon Company International and Longchamp. Was this a filler event or was it worth playing for trainers?

Pokémon GO Fashion Week promotional image. Credit: Niantic
Pokémon GO Fashion Week promotional image. Credit: Niantic

Pokémon GO Event Spawns & Shiny Release

The event spawns were great this time around, with the newly Shiny-released Kricketot spawning most. There is unconfirmed speculation that Kricketot has a boosted Shiny rate, but even just the sheer volume of Kricketot spawning led to a more-than-fair shot at catching this new Shiny Pokémon. Some trainers express frustration at Costumed Pokémon but, the truth is, this draws more casual players to the game than those trainers may expect. Costumed Pokémon are collector's items and Shiny versions are high in trade value. The release of Shiny Croagunk with the backward cap in the wild gave trainers something to hunt for and though it was rare, it spawned at a higher rate than other species which receive the "rarely spawn in the wild" warning from Niantic. Overall, the spawns were the biggest win for the Fashion Week event.

Eggs and Tasks

Smoochum with a bow was featured in 7 KM eggs and two PokéStop tasks, with Shiny potential. The rate at which Smoochum hatched from these Gift Eggs was egregious, making the tasks the only viable way to hunt this Shiny. This was the first time that the Egg-only Smoochum was available to catch through a task, which added an extra goal, and an attainable one at that, to the event. It would have been better to have Smoochum hatch at a much higher rate as well, but the tasks made up for the weakness of the Eggs.

Features

There wasn't much in the way of bonuses for the Fashion Week event, but it was great to see Croagunk with the backward cap in photobombs for GO Snapshots. If every event had a photobomb feature, I would personally have no complaints about that.

Fashion Week Raids

Now, here's a major issue. Shinx and Kirlia were released in raids with costumed. Shinx was Shiny-capable. Kirlia… well, Niantic never let anyone know. There was a reason for trainers to believe that Kirlia would be Shiny in raids, because of two things:

  1. Previous costumed evolutions such as Raticate, Wobbuffet (before its wider Shiny release), Gengar, and Nidorino were all Shiny capable this year. Every single evolved costumed Pokémon was available Shiny when featured in raids this year… until it seems, now.
  2. Shiny Kirlia with the top hat was added to the Pokémon GO code along with Shiny Shinx with the top hat, Shiny Croagunk with the backward cap, and Shiny Smoochum with the bow.

Afterword began to spread in the Pokémon GO community that no one had encounters a Shiny Kirlia with the costumed hat, the search widened. People asked Niantic, to no reply. Bleeding Cool even solicited our readers to chime in, and received only mistaken emails that sent images of non-Shiny Kirlia with the hat, or a standard Shiny Kirlia that had been evolved from Ralts. There has been, to this day, no sightings of a Shiny Kirlia with the hat and, incredibly, no response from Niantic.

Niantic has received criticism this year both, in my opinion, fairly and unfairly. Their Mega Raid system, while it has issues, was unfairly maligned. They were roasted for removing pandemic bonuses, but it was actually their wording that deserved criticism because the Incense remains much more effective than it used to be. However, setting the expectation for a Shiny Kirlia with the top hat due to previous evolutions being Shiny with the costume and then, especially, failing to respond to player's questions is beyond the pale. Niantic deserves major praise from the way that they have turned Pokémon GO into both an enthralling game and a lifestyle that promotes both community and physical wellness, but their lack of response to a community bleeding money on raid passes in hopes to get a Shiny Pokémon that may not exist is shocking.

Fashion Week was overall a fun event, but the wall of silence from Niantic left a bitter aftertaste. Personally, I can't help but look forward to tomorrow's autumn-themed event. I, like many of the other players, love the game. Niantic has created something incredible but it's the community that keeps this game alive. And the community deserves better.

About Theo Dwyer

Theo Dwyer writes about comics, film, and games.