Time-Gated Research Tasks: Are they necessary? (Community & Personal Opinion)

Recently I noticed a shift towards time-gated tasks in Timed and Special Research stories that hasn’t been so prevalent before. Time-gated tasks are Research that require trainers to complete a task for a certain number of days, either ‘in a row’ or ‘on different days’.

With more of these than ever, I decided to see what the community thinks, as well as review my own opinion on the matter. This article also considers why this change may have happened, and whether some tasks are just way too long or too difficult for some trainers.

Time-Gated Research Examples

Masterwork Researches

There have been 3 ‘Masterwork’ Special Research stories released in the game over time. Firstly, during Kanto Tour in 2021 for a Shiny Mew encounter. Secondly, during Hoenn Tour in 2023, named ‘Wish Granted‘, for a Shiny Jirachi encounter. Johto Tour in February 2022 introduced Shadow Apex Lugia & Ho-oh with a research named ‘Masterwork Research: Apex‘. The Mew Masterwork Research, named ‘All-in-One #151’ returned to the shop recently in July 2023. 2 out of the 3 Masterwork Researches have been on sale at some point this year. All three of the Masterwork Researches featured one or more time-gated tasks.

The point of these researches is to make them very hard for trainers to complete. This causes trainers to spend more time on the game and play for longer period of time. Let’s have an individual look at both these researches and see if they may have been too difficult.

How to get Shiny Jirachi

Shiny Jirachi Masterwork Research

Shiny Jirachi’s Masterwork Research is the most extreme example of where time-gated research has made tasks difficult. It features a combined 47 days of time-gated tasks involving buddy hearts, spinning PokéStops and catching Pokémon. These were intentionally difficult, but this research may have crossed the line as most trainers who purchased the ticket are stuck on Pages 2-5 after 7 months as of the time this article is being written.

How to get Shiny Mew

Although lengthy, a majority of the Shiny Mew Masterwork Research’s tasks are achievable. Shiny Mew’s research was the first very long time-gated task of its time, with a task involving catching a Pokémon 30 Days in a row. However, this is the only task with a time gate on it in this research so it is not as long as Jirachi.

In my opinion the Shiny Mew research was much better than the Shiny Jirachi research, due to the tasks being more achievable over time. However both included long winded and specific tasks like “Catch 10 Kecleon” and “Get a Platinum Kanto Medal” being way too difficult or simply incompletable due to regionals. One of my fellow GO Hub writers, phrixu, expressed similar views with a comment too.

I’ve enjoyed the shiny mew research so far, it hasn’t felt too daunting and is a great slow progress whilst playing the game regularly kind of research. Shiny Jirachi however, I’ve been stuck on ‘Catch 10 Kecleon’ for MONTHS and I’m beyond bored with it now. – @phrixu

Season of Adventures Abound

With the Paldea events, the ‘A Paldean Adventure‘ Special Research debuted. It is intended to last a long time throughout the season but the long time-gated tasks have become monotonous for many trainers. Tasks involving Earning buddy hearts for 7 days, Visiting PokéStops for 14 days and Catching Pokémon for 14 days. This means 35 days of the same task for weeks at a time, making extremely quite repetitive. 

GO Plus+ Research

Nightcap Snorlax

Trainers who purchased the recent Pokémon GO Plus+ received a Special Research story featuring 5 encounters with a Nightcap Snorlax. However, many people expressed their concern with the long winded tasks which involve a combined 35 days (5 weeks) of tracking sleep with the device. 

Community Opinion

Insufficient Rewards for long tasks

In the comments of the post, countless people expressed that the rewards for time-gated tasks are insufficient and too little. I personally agree as a task that takes lots of effort, remembering and continued dedication shouldn’t reward just a few items. Let’s have a look at two examples in recent researches where rewards may have been insufficient:

Masterwork Research: Wish Granted

Spin a PokéStop 20 days in a row Incense icon 1× Incense
Catch a Pokémon 7 days in a row Golden Razz Berry icon 7× Golden Razz Berry
Earn a heart with your Buddy 20 days in a row Poffin icon 1× Poffin

These are 3 examples where the items in the Shiny Jirachi Masterwork Research simply aren’t good enough. 1 Poffin and 1 Incense can be easily obtained elsewhere and both have low costs in the shop. 7 Golden Razz Berries is an okay reward, but this can simply be obtained by winning a 5-Star or Mega Raid.

A Paldean Adventure

Earn a heart with your buddy on 7 different days Stardust icon 3000× Stardust
Visit PokéStops on 14 different days Stardust icon 6000× Stardust
Catch a Pokémon on 14 different days Stardust icon 9000× Stardust

This is a more recent example which everyone currently has in their account (if you play during the Season of Adventures Abound). A total of 18,000 Stardust for 5 weeks worth of tasks just isn’t worth it and I can see why many trainers communicated that they aren’t bothered to continue the research past Step 3.

‘Days in a Row’ vs ‘Different Days’

Time gates are MUCH better when its “x days” rather than “x days in a ROW” – @ThatHollowGuy

Multiple replies said that they prefer the ‘on different days’ tasks compared to ‘days in a row’. I can completely understand this argument as the different days task allows less punishment if you forget on a certain day. Different days tasks allow trainers to move at their own pace and complete the tasks even if they miss a day.

Online Polls

To start with, I posted 2 polls on my social media pages to see what the communities opinion is. Here’s a look at the results from both:

  1. What’s your opinion on time-gated Research tasks? (892 total votes)
  • They’re good for the game – 16%
  • Waste of time, pointless – 29%
  • They keep the game interesting – 41%
  • Other (comment) – 4%

The results here indicate that most trainers see the positive side of time-gated tasks, however still a decent amount found no point in them. 

2. Have you completed the Shiny Jirachi Research yet? (784 total votes)

  • No, I didn’t buy the ticket – 44%
  • Yes, I have finished it – 27%
  • No, I’m still completing it – 29%

Just under half of the voters did not buy the ticket, but out of those who did, there is a majority of trainers are still struggling to complete the tasks after 7 months since its release.

Are some tasks too long or too difficult for some trainers?

Multiple trainers expressed that they found a few tasks simply too hard to complete. These comments mainly came in about the Masterwork Researches so let’s have a look at the most mentioned tasks:

Masterwork Research: Wish Granted

Catch 10 Kecleon Incense icon 1× Incense

Outside of featured events, Kecleon is one of the rarer Pokémon to find in the game. They appear invisible on PokéStops until you spin them, and many trainers have still only found a few since the researches debut in February. 

All-in-One #151

Earn the Platinum Kanto Medal Ultra Ball icon 51× Ultra Ball

The Platinum Kanto Medal requires trainers to obtain all 151 Pokémon. With 4 regional Pokémon, 4 legendaries and Mew itself, this task is almost impossible for trainers to complete with its return in 2023. I believe the task probably should have been changed or mentioned with the ticket purchase, as newer trainers must now trade or wait to collect these difficult Pokémon.

Honorable Mentions:

Here’s a few replies with community opinions from my Twitter (X) that are worth including as they address valid points and interesting perspectives and opinions.

I might be in the minority but I enjoy them. Before the paldea event I had completed all of the other ones and was getting a little bored. In saying that, I’m also conscious that I live in the Sydney CBD so I don’t really struggle to complete tasks, whereas rural players might. – BenniexChase

I think it’s important on balance to have research like the recent Masterball one that takes a bit of grinding and can’t be completed in a day or two. That said, the Jirachi research has felt like a total drain and still nowhere near finishing it. Preferred shiny Mew research. – @nymers89

I don’t mind time-gated research because eventually you see a light at the end of the tunnel. But man hunting specific mons that don’t spawn regularly is a different kind of hopelessness. – @IsSingSong5ime

“I think they;re fine IF they’re paired with suitable other tasks. Putting something like catching 1000 Pokemon in the same page of research as spinning stops for a week makes no sense to me, and stops hardcore grinders having an advantage over casuals/rurals” – @TudorVII

“I prefer tasks like catch 1k Pokémon or make 1k excellent throws – still takes long time but gives me more fun and motivation and is much more rewarding. Task of repeating one simple thing for 14 days is just lazy writing” – @theCieniu

“I’m not a fan of the ones that require a given action so many days in a row, i.e., miss one day and you have to start over again. Even some daily players can find these difficult to complete. Also not a fan of paid timed research, if you pay for it it should stay until finished.” – @physicsmon

Personal Opinion

In my opinion, time-gated tasks can be necessary in certain contexts but have now become overused. If the research is waiting for content to debut or be released, then time-gated tasks make perfect sense. I believe that one or two time-gated tasks in a research is okay, but multiple that tally up to 3-5+ weeks is just too much, especially if they are in a row. 

That being said, I do like the recent addition of these tasks being able to be completed on different days. I also think that time-gated tasks do help the longevity of the game and the fact that it is only 1 task per day is good.

Good luck with your daunting time-gated tasks and keep dedicated everyone! Thanks for all your opinions and votes, it is truly appreciated!

Author & tags

The Poke GO Hunter
The Poke GO Hunterhttps://linktr.ee/thepokegohunter
Pokemon GO Content Creator since 2019. I enjoy designing infographics in my free time and writing the occasional article.

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