The Gym defending metagame has changed drastically since the last update. The most important changes include a limit regarding the maximum number of Pokémon from the same species that can be assigned to the gym and the motivation system.
The days battling gyms full of Blissey are thankfully over and now it only takes three fights per Pokémon to take it down from maximum motivation, which makes gym battling faster and more entertaining.
Why do we promote Gym turnover?
Simple: no gym turnover, no Coins. You don’t want to hold on a gym forever, and having Pokémon inside that simply bait an easy attack is a good strategy to earn some coin.
Pokémon that used to be assigned to gyms before (due to their high CP) such as Gyarados and Rhydon are not as common in the current metagame due to their double weaknesses, which make them pretty vulnerable and easy to take down.
The super effective bonus got a massive buff in the last update, going from 1.25 to 1.4 (1.96 for Pokémon with double weaknesses), and without even taking into account STAB bonuses. In addition to that, high CP does not guarantee a better gym placement anymore.
That is the reason why Pokémon with great tankiness and just one weakness have had an increase in popularity (Vaporeon).
Blissey (current max CP of 3173) and Snorlax (3307) are still the best gym defenders, not only because of their high CP, tankiness and HP, but also because of being only weak to fighting. Defeating a CP3000+ Blissey or a Snorlax is still pretty tedious in the first attempt, but it doesn’t take as long as before, especially after the second attempt on.
They are the perfect example of the two Pokémon that don’t promote high gym turnover rate, since players do not usually want to fight them and they move on to the next gym with easier Pokémon to take down.
Pokémon that promote gym turnover
The best Pokémon to promote high gym turnover rate can be divided in a few groups, that describe their role and reason why they are ideal as “gym offense bait”.
Double weakness heroes
Pokémon with double weaknesses, such as
- Gyarados (water/ type, 2x weak to electric,
- Rhydon/Golem (ground/rock types, 2x weak to water and grass),
- Dragonite (dragon/ type, 2x weak to ice),
- Tyranitar (rock/dark type, 2x weak to fighting) and many others.
The ones just listed are just common examples of great attackers with good DPS output that suffer from double weaknesses and makes them bad defenders, but great bait. There are plenty of other examples, such as Omastar/Kabutops (water/rock types, and therefore 2x weak to grass) and many others, but the ones listed are the ones that got the greatest decrease in viability in gyms since the latest update and are good to illustrate how important type effectiveness can be to defend a gym.
Low CP Knights
The second group of Pokémon that promotes high gym turnover rate includes low CP common Pokémon (such as Pidgey, Rattata, Sentret). Even though it still takes three attempts to knock out a low CP Pokémon from a gym (assuming full motivation), battling against a low CP Pokémon with almost no DPS output makes it way easier and the battle won’t last long.
If you want to promote high turnover rate in gyms, do not assign a rare Pokémon to it. With the new berry feeding system, you can obtain a candy of the same species than the Pokémon that you’re feeding, even though the candy drop rate is very low.
As an example, some people assign Unown to gyms to show other players that they caught an ultra-rare species, and this might be a bad idea if you want to promote high turnover rate in that gym. Unown is currently so rare that the majority of trainers haven’t even been able to see one, let alone catching it.
That’s why they might want to preserve it in the gym and keep feeding it berries to see if they are lucky and they can obtain an Unown candy. The same happens with the Mareep family and some good defenders that are considered as ultra-rare Pokémon such as Lapras.
To sum up, the lower the CP of a Pokémon in a gym, the easier and faster it will be to take it down, and therefore the greater the gym turnover rate will be. Gyms with CP2500+ Blissey or Snorlax might be uncontested, whereas gyms with lower CP Pokémon that do not defend as well as these two might have a greater turnover rate. Keep in mind that Pokémon with a CP of 3000 or greater have a significantly greater motivation decay rate, which means that its CP will decrease faster. If you don’t want to fight against a CP3000 Blissey, you can wait a bit and then give it a try.
It all depends on your objective when you beat a gym. For low gym turnover areas (which might be the case of rural players), the best strategy to get 50 coins daily is to place Pokémon in gyms that are easy to take down, such as the ones suggested in this article. This will encourage players from other teams to defeat them and the gyms won’t be as stagnant as they would be when filled with top tier defending Pokémon. Since only 8h and 20 min of gym defending per day are required to obtain the maximum amount of daily coins, try not to overpopulate all gyms, since that could discourage other trainers from helping you earn your coins. For high turnover areas, however, stronger Pokémon will be needed to reach the maximum amount of daily coins. Keep in mind, however, that the list of Pokémon that promote high gym turnover rate does not change between the two types of areas mentioned.