Pokémon GO's EX Raids were discontinued in Spring 2020 as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Previously, EX Raids were invite-only raids that were earned by trainers who raided at EX-capable gyms. The invite would arrive with a date and time and the trainer would have to be at the gym in-person to complete the EX Raid. Pokémon that were featured in these raids were considered highly desirable and were normally locked to the feature, including Mewtwo, Deoxys in its various Formes, and Regigigas. Now that Niantic is beginning to revert pandemic bonuses, much to the chagrin of the Pokémon GO community, the question remains: are they just taking things away or will they reintroduce what was removed in the past? Will EX Raids return to Pokémon GO?
We do, in fact, have confirmation that EX Raids will return to Pokémon GO, directly from Niantic's blog entry:
Remote Raids have become an important part of the game this past year and we're going to continue evolving them. Our intention is to find the right balance between remote play and in-person play, so stay tuned for more details in the coming months. Many of these in-person raid changes will be to prepare for the eventual return of EX Raids
Now, what I wonder is how this feature will change. Here are some possibilities for what we could see:
- Mythical Pokémon with multiple forms: Deoxys made a lot of sense. It allowed Niantic to cycle through Formes without clogging up the Legendary raid rotation. This would be a good way to release Deoxys' Shinies as well as Genesect's different Drives.
- Arceus: Speaking of clogging up the Legendary rotation, Arceus has a Forme for every type. This would be an ideal EX Raid feature and is a hyped enough release to make this feature's return major news.
- Legendary Mega Evolved Pokémon: Mega Evolved Pokémon are already generally as difficult to take down as Tier Five raids. So what happens when that boost is given to an already Legendary species? I can't see them being locked to the same style of raids. It'll likely be treated as something unique, like perhaps Mega EX Raids.