After a week full of teases following the conclusion of this year’s Pokemon Go Fest events, the yearly Pokemon Go Ultra Bonus event has finally been revealed. Now we’re in for weeks of exciting spawns! Expect brand-new shiny Pokemon, regionals crossing the pond, Jirachi Special Research, and the staggered start of Pokemon GO Gen 5. Let’s take a look at what this all entails (and more) in our Pokemon Go Ultra Bonus 2019 guide!
What Is The Ultra Bonus Event?
The Pokemon Go Ultra Bonus event is, at this point, an annual occurrence: a celebration of Pokemon Go designed to pad out those long Summer days. It usually kicks in after the final Pokemon Go Fest of the year, and the event is week after week of new and exciting in-game bonuses.
Pokemon GO Ultra Bonus Start Date and Times
The first week of the Ultra Bonus event is set to kick off on Sept. 2. The final week of goodies will conclude on Sept. 23. And unlike Community Day scheduling, the Ultra Bonus event begins and ends at 1 p.m. PDT, so use a tool like World Time Buddy to convert that to your current timezone. It’s not just based on your local time!
Pokemon GO Ultra Bonus Event Week 1 Guide: “Johto Journey”
Ultra Bonus Week 1 takes place between Sept. 2 and Sept. 9. Dubbed the “Johto Journey,” arguably the biggest deal is the addition of Unown in 10 km eggs. Unown is a comically rare pokemon with 28 different forms all based on the alphabet, the question mark, and exclamation point characters. They’re typically reserved for GO Fest and Safari Zone events — where they spell out a recurring theme or name. That makes it almost impossible to collect the full set without jetting off across the world.
During the event, U, L, T, R, and A Unown forms will hatch in 10 km eggs. This obviously spells out “Ultra” for the Ultra Bonus event. The Pokemon Go website says you’ll need to be “extraordinarily lucky” to hatch one. To make this a tad easier, 2x Incubator effectiveness will be in play during this week. Pair that with a Super Incubator to make hatching 10 km eggs a breeze.
Raikou, Entei, and Suicune will also reappear as five-star raid bosses during this time, with the usual 1/20 chance of being shiny. Other Pokemon from the Johto region will inhabit raids, too. Keeping up with the Johto trend, Shiny Sentret and Shiny Gligar will also make their debut. Be sure to look out for these! Of course, this extends to their evolved forms: Furrett and Gliscor.
- Unown U, L, T, R, and A may hatch from 10 km eggs.
- Raikou, Enteir, and Suicune in five-star raids (possible shines).
- Increased Johto spawns.
- Shiny Sentret and Gligar debut in Pokemon Go.
- 2x Incubator effectiveness (until Sept. 23).
Strategy: Unown being locked behind 10 km eggs suggests Niantic wants people to trade duplicates, rather than farm the whole set. Hatch a couple as you chase down any shiny dogs you’re missing. Your main focus should be grabbing shiny Sentret and Gligar while the spawn rates are increased!
Ultra Bonus Event Week 2: “Global Challenge, Global Hatches”
Week 2 of the Ultra Bonus event, as the title implies, continues the focus on eggs. Things kick off on Sept. 9, 2019 — just as Week 1 comes to a close.
Kanto regional Pokemon like Farfetch’d and Tauros will appear worldwide through 7 km eggs. For the first time ever, this will include their shiny variants. Regionals will remain in 7 km eggs until the end of week three. The same 2x incubator effectiveness will also continue.
Signaling a potential change in EX raid battles, Deoxys and its many forms will drop down to five-star raids for the week. To make tackling it a little easier, Pokemon known to counter this elusive creature will also join the raid pool.
- Kanto regionals Farfetch’d, Kangaskhan, Mr. Mime, and Tauros will appear in 7 km eggs (until Sep. 23, with shinies possible)
- All Deoxys forms in five-star raids.
- Deoxys counters in raids.
Strategy: The big deal for most players, Kanto regionals making their now yearly worldwide trip, should take up much of your time. Focus on that!
Eggs of the 7 km variety are easy to get through gifts, so be sure to make lots of friends for an easier time not only completing your Kanto Pokedex, but potentially getting some very rare shiny versions for your personal collection. Not to mention they’ll make for some really great trade leverage once they’re gone again. You’ll also have four Deoxys forms to hunt down in raids if you haven’t been able to attend EX Pass fights this year.
Ultra Bonus Week 3: “A Unova Unveiling”
Week 2 makes way for Week 3 on Sept. 16, 2019. At this point the infamous Mewtwo takes to the stage yet again. Mewtwo returns with a new exclusive move called “Psystrike.” Shiny Mewtwo in Pokemon Go will also make its grand debut after all these years.
Just like Deoxys, viable Mewtwo counters will join the raid pool at this time. Although these might very well be the same given the identical typing of both creatures.
Just like last year, this also marks the start of a new generation of Pokemon Go spawns. It’s the official Pokemon Go Gen 5 release date! Pokemon originally discovered in the Unova region will begin spawning out in the wild. Patrat, Lillipup, and Klink, three of these new Pokemon, even bring their shiny forms. Klink will be exclusive to raids for the time being.
- Mewtwo w/ Psystrike in five-star raids (shiny possible).
- Mewtwo counters in raids.
- Pokemon Go Gen 5 release day – certain Unova pokemon spawn.
- Shiny Patrat, Lillipup, and Klink (raid exclusive) may appear.
Strategy: Things wrap up nicely in week 3 with a single raid to focus on and a bunch of new wild pokemon knocking around. Any time Mewtwo appears in raids is a big deal, given it’s still one of the strongest and most versatile counters in the whole game. Psystrike is likely to amplify that even further, given Psychic has been a legacy move for it for some time. Oh, and shiny Mewtwo? Say no more! Just be on the lookout for shiny Patrat, Lillipup, and Klink to get your Unova ‘dex off to a fantastic start.
Pokemon GO Ultra Bonus Week 4: Speculation
We’re always anticipating the next big thing with Pokemon Go. And Niantic is always surprising players with sudden announcements and teases. Even with this Ultra Bonus event being one of the biggest bonus windows we’ve ever seen, there’s still room to speculate on the how, why, and when.
One of the first things that stands out here is the three-week window. There are exactly seven days left in the month when Week 3 ends, leading to speculation that a Pokemon Go Ultra Bonus Week 4 might surprise players at the last second. There’s no break between one Ultra Bonus event ending and another starting, so Week 3 could connect right into a big reveal of a monumental Ultra Bonus Week 4.
But what would an Ultra Bonus Week 4 look like? Ultra Beasts. Now, this might be a push, but hear me out. This year sees Pokemon Sword and Pokemon Shield ring in the start of Gen 8 on consoles. That means the end of Gen 7 games Pokemon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon. These games introduced Ultra Beasts to the franchise, and even brought Team Rocket (or Team Rainbow Rocket) back after a long hiatus.
With Unown spawns spelling out Ultra, the recent Team Rocket invasion (and Giovanni’s appearance at GO Fest), and the need for new EX Pokemon following Deoxys’ dip to five-star during the event, it makes sense to speculate that powerful Ultra Beast Pokemon might find their way into the game for the final week of September. It’s a long shot, but it would help see Gen 7 off with a bang. After all, Alolan pokemon hailing from those games did arrive earlier than most expected.