Our Thoughts on the Kanto Tour

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This weekend saw the ‘Kanto Tour‘ event take place. It was a ticketed event, costing USD$11.99 plus any applicable taxes and fees (or the equivalent in your local currency). It ran from 9am to 9pm local time, and was participated in by players all over the world, including many of our writers.

We were all really excited for this event, and were left with a lot of different feelings after taking part in it, so here are our thoughts on how it went.


26 shinies, several of which were brand new to me. Played Green version in the UK.

There was a lot I liked about this event! The short raid timers meant people who wanted to focus on raids could raid all day long quite happily. I enjoyed the different spawns for each themed hour, it was very nostalgic for the original games and I appreciated that. The shiny Ditto quest line was easily done in the single day, and Niantic did a great job of making sure there were a lot of balls as rewards in the tasks so we didn’t run out.

I was lucky to have a good friend who was happy to choose Red version so we were able to trade to complete our challenges, as well as swap some shinies that were exclusives to our versions to the other. The increased trade distance was a big help, I had a message off a friend during the day who lives in a small village quite a few miles away who didn’t have anyone to trade with, and I was able to help him out so he could complete that aspect too.

However, considering the current global pandemic, giving out 3 free remote raid passes, and making the regionals raid exclusives, on top of the legendaries that you also had to catch to complete the collection challenge, really sucked. 9 free raid passes are only useful if you can go out to gyms to physically raid at them, and a lot of people can’t do that right now, which meant if you wanted to complete the challenge, you had to buy remotes, on top of the ticket price. Rural players, and those without keen communities around them will have struggled. I raided a few Tauros and Farfetch’d to try and get the shinies, but it doesn’t seem many of my local community managed to get any of the regionals shiny, and I didn’t want to spend money on them when I had already paid for a ticket. Also, having to use a raid pass to get your own regional was frustrating, especially if you had to use a remote!

The biggest issue I had with the event was the NPC collection challenge. It was impossible to complete from home, and took a lot of NPC battles to actually complete. I think Niantic should have been more transparent with this aspect, they had mentioned NPCs appearing on the map, but by having them at Pokéstops only, it locked out a lot of the player base because of stay at home orders. It is another aspect that rural players would struggle with as well as while the stops did refresh once you had battled, it would have meant camping out at a Pokéstop for quite a period of time which was not realistic. I loved the idea of the NPCs, and the competition to be in the game, but utilising the balloons, or having them appear on the map some other way, would have made them a lot more accessible for at home players.

In terms of shinies, I had a feeling the rates would be similar to GO Fest last year and tried to keep my expectations in check. The first hour I got one shiny, a lapras on my GO Plus while I was in a raid. They seemed slow going at first, with the majority of shinies coming in the second half of the event. It often seems with these paid events that the rates boost towards the end, and the final two hours I got a fair few more. I’d have liked to have seen incense boosted, and a quicker refresh on regular map spawns to help out at home players. I ran some errands during the day and seemed to pick up a lot on my GO Plus compared to when I was at home, and I am pretty lucky in terms of house spawns as I have quite a few spawn points.

The Kanto Tour website stated ‘Only certain Pokémon will have an increased chance of being Shiny when encountered in the wild.’. These increased chances were advertised as the exclusive Pokémon for each version, as well as the Pokémon that were attracted to incense in both versions. I played Green version, and of the exclusive Pokémon I managed to get one Bellsprout in the last half hour, two Sandshrew, no Vulpix, one Magmar, one Pinsir, and two Meowth. For the non-exclusive, but increased shiny chances, I got out of 6 out of 16 possibles. I was hoping for more than one Bellsprout as it was one of my version exclusives, and one I didn’t have pre-event, but in the end I was just really excited to get one. Sandshrew was my number one target so I was thrilled to complete the set. Managing my shiny hype expectations is the biggest thing to avoid disappointment for me personally. It isn’t Community Day, and the rates aren’t the same.

New Zealand and APAC got the brunt of the problems in terms of network issues, but in the UK we also had a fair few throughout the day with game crashes, raid errors and more. As the day went on the issues seemed to lessen, but they definitely made it trickier.

Releasing a whole bunch of information about the event mere hours before it started doesn’t sit right with me, and meant a lot of people who bought tickets felt they had been misled about the event itself and what it entailed. I often mention it in feedback, but more transparency, please!

Niantic have announced that there will be a make up event already so…. yeah. It’s kind of expected at this point isn’t it?


12 shinies – 8 new/needed for family lines, raid total approx. mid-30’s, £20 spent on the day.

I played the full day, I used the morning to push hard on completing the collection challenges and research and in the afternoon/early evening I was shiny checking, raiding and trading. When it started it was a little jolting but soon got into the swing of it, the trick with the evolution collection was to evolve each new thing you could right there and then and tick them back when you had a spare second.

At first the NPC challengers were a novelty but after a while became a bit of a nuisance, I feel more could have been more done with them and there being only 8(?) different characters it was repetitive and I just ignored them after I’d finished the research needed.

I really thought it was great to see all the first gen take to the spotlight, this almost felt like a last ‘hurrah’ for Kanto, after all it’s been almost 5 years since Pokemon Go launched and some players want to move on from it. There will always be new players though so Kanto will continue to feature in the future. Having said that it would have been great to see more variety in the wild, not just the first evolution but the second and third as well, who is going to go out their way to catch a Charmander but would for a Charizard, especially as it could be shiny in the wild?

I wasn’t that keen on the regionals being raid locked, for me personally I am lucky enough to be able to reach a gym from home but if you are not then presuming you catch each raid boss needed first time you would need to buy more remote passes if you could not leave your home under local restrictions. I bought my ticket in December not long after the event was announced, but considering how long they were available there was surprisingly little detail about the event until up to the day before. I’ve thought before, for example during virtual Go Fest last year, that there should be more transparency about what is available and how.

Speaking of which… shiny rates are a big deal for a lot of players. I got the one I wanted most (Kangaskhan) but figure I can get any of the others any other time, they’re all available now so it’s just time and patience. I know a lot of people were disappointed with shiny rates or they didn’t get the one they wanted so not everyone will feel they were fair, I am satisfied but I would feel different if I’d missed out on the one I wanted. Was the event value for money? In any scenario, $12 is not the same as £12, because I bought mine early I got the two free Community Day researches so effectively taking it down to £10 which I think was fair. There was a lot going on, I had a full day of enjoyment and even though a make-up event has already been announced there was surprisingly little downtime (as a European player, I know NZ/APAC got it in the neck like they always do).

Overall, a solid 8/10, more upfront details ahead of time for next time please.


I’m honestly not sure what my 15€ got me. All I wanted was to catch some rare Pokemon that i’m usually not able to, like Chansey and Lickilicky. What I got was a lot of Ekans, and a few Growlithe and Scyther. Meanwhile I saw 5 Lickitung and 1 Chansey and I was playing all of the 12 hours. But probably playing from home get you nothing…. If I knew thing will be like that and I’m not gonna catch anything rare I would have never paid for the event. I honestly don’t know what I got for 15€.


To me, this event is proof that you ALWAYS have to have low expectations.. and things run fantastic!

I brought my ticket on December, without any expectations after the GOFest Fiasco. They said there will be boosted rates for shinys for ticket holders, and I thought “nah, I know that catchphrase.. not gonna happen”, but I gave it another chance. I was sincerely NOT hoping for the best, and then Niantic proved me wrong. I got 20 shinys in total, most of them ones that I never got, and I saw that boosted shinys throughout the entire event.

Of course, I know that’s not everybody’s case. I think the shiny odds are most a thing of luck than any other. For example, I played from home from the beginning to the end and got 20….and some of my friends went out and got 10 only. That’s what I mean with luck. It always a random thing.

But apart from the shinys, I want to emphasize on how this event felt to me. As mentioned, the shinys gave it a huge plus to me, but also I felt so nostalgic playing Kanto Tour, that I literally got goosebumps at some points. This is thanks to the music of Junichi Masuda. I think I am not the only one to think this, but that made me go back in time to my sweet childhood memories, playing the original Pokemon Games.

I played Red Version for the first time back then, and I never traded with anyone of the other version because I never got poke-friends. So, I never got a chance to have Bellsprout, Magmar, Pinsir, Sandshrew, and those exclusives mons from Blue/Green. But now things are different 🙂 Thanks to my Local Community Nidos Santiago, I got to a friend that plays Pokemon GO, and he had Green Version. So, we went on some trading.  This was the first time of my life I had the chance of trading with some other kid that had Pokémon Green 😀 Those things (The great Junichi Masuda’s music and finally being able to trade) made me a big big BIG smile on my face, and made me feel like a kid again. Kudos to Niantic to make that possible.

So in the end, yeah I got everyone who is complaining. Specially because they promised something that was not true, because the experience from home was not equal in the outside. I am convinced that, playing outside would get me a lot shinies that I ended up with, and that kinda sucks. I have a Pokestop at home, so always had a bunch of pokeballs and gifts, and yeah, it was a a lot easier to face this rival guys from home thanks to that.

But again, I think that is not most of cases. So yeah, the event was great FOR ME. But Overall, I think it left people really disappointing, and I think Niantic should listen to the community and improve that kind of things. (And I’m not talking about the extension of the event, I had no problem with the event being 12 hours). I’d give it 6/10.

And remember, always run low on expectations…I wasn’t hoping to get all of these shinys/feelings. Well done Niantic, and keep improving 🙂


30 total shinies, 13 of which I needed to finish evolution lines or were new completely.

The event was long, maybe too long, I do not like the theme hours. It makes it hard to take breaks when each hour offers limited time to get what you want. The last 2 hours were the best. Way too many freakin go trainers, made spinning stops tedious. We still need a ready button for raids to forego timer. I really like the collection tasks. Overall it was a good event, just felt clunky and difficult to manage everything by hour increments.


I go back and forth a lot with how I feel about the event. The collections were neat, and it was fun to collect them all, but the shiny rates were underwhelming for what we paid.

Don’t get me wrong, I got 13 shiny which isn’t terrible. I know people who got 40+. Those are good rates. But the majority of the shinies that people I’ve spoken to got were old ones, shinies that were previously released. I got 1 new one, (2 if you include ditto). For what we paid for the event I would of expected the rates to be boosted across the board.

I was gutted when I learnt that Snorlax would be a super rare wild spawn, and available in raids without a shiny boost. The shiny Snorlax release is half the reason I bought the ticket lol For a Pokémon that was so prominently featured in the advertising and the images for the event I expected more.

I think the guaranteed shiny ditto and the research to get shiny mew kinda make up for it, but I think overall I was mostly underwhelmed with it all. It’s hard to say how much of that is tied to Snorlax, but there it is lol

Epic Bookworm

I had a really great day – I got a lot of shinies, most of them new, and I enjoyed the collection challenge aspect of the event – as someone who loves to fill the Pokédex, it was nice to have a mini dex to fill! And even though it was guaranteed, shiny Ditto was super cool to get – and I’m glad I’ve got lots of work to do to get my shiny Mew. Research has become a favourite aspect of the game for me.

But I do feel extremely lucky to have had that awesome experience – had the event been one week earlier, I would have been locked down and unable to play as seriously, and I would have only been able to be outside for two hours. Not the worst lockdown in the world by a long shot, but still would have made a huge difference to my ability to play the Tour. As it was, I had pretty good success on incense at home later in the day when I was playing more chill, but there’s no doubt being able to be out and about was crucial to the positive experience.


Kanto Tour — My honest review (a thread) Overall, nice event. 6.5/10

Main issues: – Too much raid-oriented – Regionals only in raids – Challengers (NPCs) not in balloons, for some reason – Field research was pretty bad – NOT meant to be played from home – Incense lasting 1h

I caught 33 shinies, but I was able to go out and catch 1k+ Pokémon. I understand why some players who had to play from home are frustrated. Honestly, the shiny rate could’ve been a bit better. After reading the official announcements, I had higher expectations.

Regionals in raids – That was probably the worst part of the event. I expected to catch the shiny regionals I was missing, but at what cost? I already paid €13 for the event, why should I pay even more to raid non-legendary Pokémon that were released 4+ years ago?

We all wanted shiny Snorlax, and Niantic knew that. They decided to make it an insanely rare spawn with a very low shiny rate and they also made it a T4 raid boss (weren’t T4 raids obsolete btw?). Oh and it was also a field research reward. Good luck hatching 3 eggs if you’re playing from home. Not the best decision in the middle of a worldwide pandemic, to be honest.

Shiny Ditto was a guaranteed encounter, which completely ruined the fun of hunting it down. I would’ve preferred a different approach to make it more fun and entertaining. It felt pretty lazy.

Lapras catch rate – Not a major issue, but worth mentioning nonetheless. Lapras were very annoying to catch. Despite showing a green circle, that thing just wouldn’t want to be caught. Excellent curveball throw with a golden razz? Nope!

NPC Challengers – Cool idea, but why wouldn’t they make them appear in balloons? One more thing worth mentioning though. Why can’t we skip the animation every time we spin a Pokéstop with an active challenger in it? It’s sooooo annoying and it really slows down your gameplay.

Balls – It was almost impossible to run out of balls. Great job there! (Assuming you could go out to play)

The rewards from special research were pretty nice. Star pieces, lucky eggs, premium raid passes (remote raid passes would’ve been better though) and other premium items were nice.

Collection Challenges – Quite fun to complete! I wouldn’t count them separately in the medal tho. It now feels like you “need” to pay for future events if you don’t want to miss out on a good bunch of challenges to prestige that medal.

Raids, raids, raids! Regionals? In raids. Shiny snorlax? In raids. Legendary birds + Mewtwo? Also in raids. The event felt quite raid-centric. I love raids and I have a raid squad, but rural players might have a harder time and that’s not fair to them. Short timers are nice if you have a raid squad, but definitely make it tricky to coordinate raids in such a short amount of time. A potential solution would be to make legendary raids a bit less challenging during the event, similar to what they do in raid days.

The music – Nostalgia everywhere. They absolutely killed it! Good job remixing some of the best tunes from our childhood.

The clothes – €13 for… a cap? Making us pay extra cash for the jacket & other clothes felt a bit excessive. Don’t you think?

Research – I love completing field research. But I just couldn’t bother trying during this event. Catch a Mankey. Catch an Ekans. Oh god… where are they? It didn’t feel smooth and fun to do! “Catch 5 Pokémon” or “Make 5 great throws” would’ve been better (generic) quests. Quests were pretty boring, and their rewards were awful. Was it really worth trying to find a Mankey for… 20 Ekans candy? Not really. Where were the Chansey, Lapras, Dratini and Aerodactyl quests? You know, spawns actually worth looking for. Not to mention, the best quest (Snorlax) made you hatch 3 eggs. In the middle of a worldwide pandemic. During an event that was advertised as “100% playable from home”. Oh well.

Free raid passes vs. Remote raid passes – Many countries are in lockdown. If you can’t reach a gym from home, then the 9 free raid passes were absolutely useless. Surely they could’ve found a way to make them all remote?

I know evolving was part of the event, but not being able to find 2nd and 3rd stage spawns in the wild really sucked. Being able to catch a Charizard, a Vileplume or a Hypno in the wild would’ve brought back the nostalgia from the early days of PoGO in 2016.


For me personally, I quite enjoyed the concept of hunting all my favourite Gen 1 Pokémon, it brought a sense of nostalgia to me from playing the main series games as a child. However, I feel as though the execution of this event was not as expected. While I think the tasks were fine, the exclusive rewards for buying a ticket were not worth it.

I know people that didn’t bother spending money on the ticket and still got a tonne of rewards that a paid ticket would have provided.

All and all, it was a grind but in the future tickets should not be that expensive and if they are, make sure the rewards are whole lot better.


There were a lot of good points, people seemed to love the concept and the themed hours, and the variety of spawns, but there was also a lot of disappointment. Nostalgia played a huge part in what people loved about this, with the music and focus on Kanto bringing back a lot of fond memories for people. We know these events won’t ever be quite the same while we can’t play with our local communities, but most of us had fun still and we able to at least trade at a distance and chat online with our Pokémon GO friends.

We wish Niantic had taken into consideration that large parts of the world are under lockdowns so were unable to complete the collection challenges, and it would have been good to see the free raid passes as all remotes with so many of the Pokémon needed for the challenges raid locked.

It would also have been so much more fun to see the regionals spawning in the wild! It cost people a lot of money on top of their tickets to shiny hunt for the regionals, which seemed a little unfair as we hadn’t been told they would be raid locked before hand. It felt like this event required a lot more money being invested into it to really partake to the fullest.

This event was a struggle for anyone in lockdown or under a stay at home order, and those who were able to go out and about certainly seemed to be rewarded with more shinies. If Niantic chooses to do another event like this during the pandemic, we hope they make it truly playable from home, rather than locking out players who can’t participate fully through no fault of their own.

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