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Pokémon GO Fest 2021 Preparation Guide

Pokémon GO Fest 2021 Preparation Guide

Well, it’s almost that time of year again – Pokémon GO Fest!

With the second at-home GO Fest coming up tomorrow, we here at GO Hub wanted to bring you a guide to how to make the most of the biggest event on the Pokémon GO calendar – in other words, getting you the most catches in the limited time we have.

More players will be able to participate than ever thanks to this year’s discounted ticket price, and there’s a range of event bonuses available even without a ticket, which makes this year’s Fest even more exciting.

Tickets are only USD $5 this year, so there’s probably a lot more players with tickets this time around, but I’ve made sure to cover both ticketed and non ticketed play. Let’s get into it!

Reminders for Ticket Holders

Some early reminders for ticket holders to not do these things before Go Fest starts in your area. Shared by panpantastic.

  • Don’t send any gifts: There might be an ultra unlock challenge of sending gifts.
  • Don’t open any gifts: There might be a bonus for opening gifts after completing an ultra unlock challenge. Also helps replenish Pokéballs during play.
  • No taking pictures of buddy: Not sure if any early Smeargle photobomb would reduce your special Pikachu photobomb amount.

Also, check out our Pokémon GO Fest 2021 Day 1: Pocket Guide and Pokémon GO Fest 2021 Day 2: Pocket Guide for day by day coverage.

What you need for GO Fest

Poké Balls

The first and most obvious thing you need for GO Fest are Poké Balls – A LOT of Poké Balls. But what kind of Poké Balls depends a lot on how you’re intending to grind on the day:

  • If you have a Go Plus, Poké Ball Plus or other catching device and you’re planning to use it for GO Fest, you want to load up on mainly basic Poké Balls, as many as you possibly can to keep feeding to your Go Plus.
  • You will also want a decent stack of Ultra balls for when all that checking nabs you a shiny.

In terms of gathering balls, while you can get basic Poké Balls from the shop, and Ultra balls appear in stacks of 50 in Ultra and Adventure Boxes right now, focus on spinning as many Stops and Gyms as you can, as well as opening your max amount of Gifts daily.

The Poké Ball rewards from gifts are stacked towards the garden variety, but it’s a viable strategy for Ultras as well – with persistence you can pick up more than enough for your needs completely free.

And if you haven’t found a local player group or Discord yet, now’s the time to do so – make gift exchange buddies and load up on what you’ll need. Our very own GO Hub Discord has a Friend Codes channel too, if you’re struggling to find a group nearby.

But what if you don’t have a Go Plus, I hear you say? No worries – while it is a little harder to gather Great Balls and Ultras through gifts and Stops, it will still do the trick if you make a point of it. In the absence of a Go Plus, you want to minimize basic balls as much as possible, in order to save yourself time when catching.

While the Ultras still go to the shinies, your Greats in this instance are there to reduce the time spent catching.

Revives and Potions

These are very split down the middle – you will have very little need for revives and potions on the first day of GO Fest, as the event that day will entirely catch-focused.

However, the second day, the GO Fest 2021 raid day, you may need a decent chunk of both items in order to get through all those raids- you’ll want to bring your best Pokémon into as many raids as possible in order to speed up the pace at which you can complete them.

Luckily, both Stops / Gyms and gifts are just as viable for these resources as they are for balls. Even given the full raid focus of day two, I wouldn’t waste too much bag space on potions and revives – the raids themselves will gift a certain amount of these items as you go along, so the base amount you have matters less.

Lucky Eggs, Star Pieces, Lures, Incense

Pokemon GO Star Piece
Pokemon GO Star Piece

These four are the core toolkit for any player looking to maximize any event bonuses, so they’re all the more valuable for Go Fest.

They are most easily acquired from the in-game shop, but ideally we don’t want to lean on that too much. The only other avenue for many of these items is through Special Research, so if you are holding on to any, now’s the time to clear them off and get those items.

If you do find you need or want to make a purchase, plot out exactly what you’ll require and buy strategically.

For example, I don’t anticipate needing Lures on the second day, as I’ll be raiding in the centre of my city and will be focused on that, and not on wild catches. On the first day, though, I want a few, as I’m going to my local park and want to contribute to having it lured up all day if can.

Star pieces for me are a nice-to-have – the amount of catching and raiding that is going to happen over this weekend will already net you a bunch of dust. Lucky Eggs will either be of huge interest to you or none at all, depending on where you are in your Pokémon GO journey – for me, I’m working on level 48, so I’m getting a lot of eggs.

If you don’t want to run them all day both days, or can’t, figure out when they will be most useful and targeting those periods. If you’re going to raid a lot, try to cover your anticipated peak raiding time. Finally, there’s incense.

You’ll also see in our GO Fest 2021 guide that some of the spawns for ticket holders are incense only. If you have a ticket and you want to get the best out of it, incense is most important thing for you to stock up on.

All the rest are helpful – incense is practically essential for ticketed players.

Raid Passes

Go Fest Day 2 has plenty of raid pass bonuses available both for remote and local, but just a glance at the raid roster for the day will tell you that you may well need extra passes.

If you’re in a position to raid in person and to purchase, the current Ultra box has 20 premium passes, which is probably the best deal on those we’ll see in 2021.

I am by no means encouraging people to spend, but if maximum raids is your aim, it’s something you might need to consider budgeting for.

Bag Space and Pokémon Storage

At this point, you’re probably saying to yourself, “What? I don’t have space in my bag for all those balls! Or revives! Or passes! Even if I did, how would I fit all those Pokémon in my storage?” And dear reader, those are fair questions. A full bag or full Pokémon storage can be a real drag on any event day, let alone GO Fest. So what do you do?

Transfer everything and then some

Firstly, start going through your Pokémon storage now, and get rid of everything you don’t need. I mean everything – unless it is useful, shiny, or has sentimental value (such as your starter Pokémon, or a gift trade from a friend), transfer it. And if you keep trade fodder, try to slim it down – the likelihood is you’re carrying around more Pokémon than you could ever get time to trade.

Transfer items as well

As for your item bag, chances are you are stockpiling resources you don’t need. Got a big stack of rare candy? Power up your rare Pokémon, or pour them all into your best legendary. Got too many TMs from playing lots of Go Battle League?

Put the best moves on your best Pokémon, then toss as many as you can bear to – a good rule of thumb would be to check how many of your shadow Pokémon you’d like to remove Frustration from. And of course, please DON’T toss your Elite TMs – those things are rare!

Heap of evolution items? I generally hold on to one of each of the Sun Stone, Dragon Scale, Kings Rock, Upgrade and Metal Coat, and while I normally hold around 10 each of both Sinnoh and Unova just in case, I’ve reduced both down to five for Go Fest, and you may want to go even lower.

Note: While there are Pokémon featured who will need these items – Scyther and Aipom are good examples – you don’t need a mountain of them to get Scizor and Ambipom into your dex.

And berries? Keep any Golden Razzes or Silver Pinaps you have – as with Elite TMs, these are quite rare items and would be difficult to replace later. If you don’t think your Golden Razz supply will hold through the first day’s festivities, keep your normal Razzes as well – any catch-rate increase for your shinies will do in a pinch.

For Nanabs, I generally hold around 10 in case of an excellent throw quest, but really it would be perfectly fine to divest yourself of all Nanabs for the weekend if you want to. Finally, there’s Pinaps, and what you do for those depends very much on what you want out of the day.

If you’re looking to build huge candy stocks out of GO Fest, keep your Pinaps. If not, keep a small amount for any rare spawns (Deino I’m looking at you) and get rid of the rest.

Buy additional storage

Pokémon storage

Right, so after doing all that – and I would encourage you to be as brutal as you can, as almost everything you throw out now you can earn back later – you would hope that there’s a fair amount of clear space in both your Pokémon and item storage.

Those people who manage their storage regularly are probably already sitting pretty. But for many of you, there’s maybe still not a lot of slots there, particularly on the Pokémon side. It’s a collection game after all – of course we’re hoarders!

That being the case, presuming you don’t have storage maxed out already, you should think carefully on whether it will be worth purchasing increased space. Frankly, 200 coins for 50 slots is not a bargain.

But unlike many of the items available in the shop, buying bag space nets you a permanent benefit – that is, you can empty and fill those slots as many times as you like for as long as you play the game. Now, everyone has their own circumstances and means, so again I would never encourage making purchases, but if you’re in a position to buy space, it’s probably one of the most beneficial things you can buy, short-term and long-term.

Hunting for your best Go Fest

General thoughts

Now your item storage is filled with only the useful stuff, and all your surplus Pokémon have been sent off to Professor Willow for their…uh, next adventure, what’s next? It’s been pretty well implied in the previous sections, but now is the time to both hunt smart and hunt hard. As with your preparations for GO Fest, across the two days it’s really important to be clear about what you want of, to achieve.

If you’re a newer or returning player, it’s likely you’re looking to fill your dex through catches, building candy, and raids. If you’re a casual to serious player, you’re likely targeting shinies and XL candies. And for the true hardcores, it’s going to be all about the grind, and maximising gains in every category from dust to XP.

So think carefully about what your aims are as we go into what we know about each day of Go Fest.

Go Fest Day 1

Time: 17 July, 10:00am to 6:00pm local time.

Pokémon GO Live Events

This is, as discussed, the catch day. There will be four different themed hours which will rotate through twice – Jungle, Desert Mountain, Ocean Beach and Cave. What time these hours are for you will vary depending on your time zone. There are also some other Pokémon which will appear on incense throughout.

Jungle Hour 🌴

  • Known spawns for non ticket holders: Scyther, Aipom, Froakie
  • Known spawns for Ticket Holders: Ludicolo, Chatot, Leafeon and Serperior

Bit of an interesting mix here. For the non ticket holders, and in particular for newer players, Scyther and Froakie are prime targets for this hour. Froakie evolves to the ever-popular (and useful) Greninja, while Scyther has a permanently boosted shiny rate, making it a great target for non ticket holders, who won’t get the ticketed shiny bonus; for newer players, its evolution Scizor is also a solid player for Go Battle League. As for Aipom, I’ll personally be targeting it in Jungle hour to complete my shiny set, but beyond that it doesn’t have a lot of use – I’d say it’s a shiny hunters’ target only.

As for the ticketed spawns, Ludicolo, Leafeon and Serperior are all great for the dust hunters, with evolved forms getting extra dust on catch. Newer players should also target these three for the evolved Pokémon candy bonus, and for the dex entries– Leafeon can normally only be obtained through use of a premium Mossy Lure or via the one-use-only name trick, Ludicolo’s base form Lotad is a reasonably uncommon spawn, particularly if it doesn’t rain often in your area, and Snivy Community Day was only a short while ago, so it’s a good opportunity for really new players looking to build Snivy candy.

That leaves the regional Pokémon Chatot. For me in Australia where it spawns all the time, I’m not really interested in Chatot. Of course it will be a dex entry for many people around the world, but it’s not a useful Pokémon. However, it is an easy excellent throw if you’re hunting XP gains – the catch circle is large and Chatot itself appears quite close. If your main focus is not XP, unless we get a surprise shiny release, (not likely with Sawk and Throh already in the mix) this is an avoid for me and my fellow Australians. Everyone else, grab what you need and get some spares to trade to your non ticket holder friends.

Desert Mountain Hour 🏜️

  • Known spawns for non ticket holders: Skarmory, Shieldon, Hippopotas
  • Known spawns for ticket holders: Flareon, Tyranitar, Flygon and Throh

In the non ticket holder spawns, Skarmory and Shieldon stand out – both are strong performers in Great League PvP. If that’s something that interests you, focus on those two in Desert Mountain Hour, and try to get yourself the quality IV spreads (check out my lazy guide to PVP here if you’d like to get started in PvP). Hippopotas is this hour’s shiny hunter target – given the differences between the genders, there are four unique-looking shinies within this one Pokémon family.

For ticket holders, once again we’ve got three evolved forms plus a regional. Flareon’s another good get for those looking for an easy Eeveelution dex entry. Flygon is pretty solid in PvP. As for Tyranitar, it’s one of best utility Pokémon available in the game – great for raids, Rockets and Gyms, and a reasonable option for Master League, particularly in the legendary-free Premier Cup. And of course these three are all great targets for the dust and candy hunters.

As for Throh…unlike Chatot, its advertised shiny release makes it a core target for everyone in Desert Mountain Hour – either just for the shiny in its normal spawn regions, or for the dex and the shiny in the regions where it doesn’t spawn.

Ocean Beach Hour 🌊

  • Known spawns for non ticket holders: Dratini, Swablu, Alomomola
  • Known spawns for ticket holders: Gyarados, Vaporeon, Azumarill and Sawk

Non ticketed new players, you have your Ocean Beach targets – Dratini and Swablu. In Dratini, you have a great route to fill your dex and farm candy for the elusive, iconic Dragonite and some nice shinies if you’re lucky. In Swablu, you also have shiny potential, but also strong spawns, and therefore candy potential, for one of the game’s 400-candy club.

In similar news for the ticketed players, there’s another 400-club member in Gyarados. As a Mega Evolution capable spawn, you’ll also have the potential to get the excellent shiny red Gyarados in the wild. Vaporeon is as Leafeon and Flareon are in the other previous hours – a good opportunity to bypass tricky evolution requirements for the Eevee family, and to build candy. Finally, there’s Azumarill, one of the MVPs of Great League PvP. If you’re looking for your first Azu or a better IV spread, here’s your chance. And again, all of these Pokémon will provide you that sweet extra dust and candy.

So now it’s time to talk Sawk, and really, you can just reread the section on Throh – this guy is a top target. He’s regional and he’ll be shiny available for the first time. Again, don’t forget your non ticketed friends, trainers – if your storage can take it, snag some extras for later trades!

Cave Hour ⛏️

  • Known spawns for non ticket holders: Roggenrola, Galarian Stunfisk, Deino
  • Known spawns for ticket holders: Umbreon, Gardevoir, Absol and Galvantula

Alright, let’s get this out of way – the number one target for most players in Cave Hour is going to be Deino. It’s a rare hatch, and an even rarer shiny. Newer players will need candy, and the shiny hunters will be looking for that little green emo dinosaur. Roggenrola’s excellent shiny family will net it second spot in terms of targets, and if quality PvP Pokémon are your jam, Galarian Stunfisk is also a great spawn.

The ticket spawns are once again all evolved forms, and thus further profit from the stardust and candy bonuses. For Umbreon, the same rationale goes as for the other Eeveelutions available throughout the day – it’s an easier way to get Umbreon in your dex, and in this case, an opportunity to get a good PvP Pokémon. Absol is a solid option if you’re short that shiny – as it typically spawns only in eggs and in raids, not in the wild, it has a better shiny rate than most, though of course the ticketed shiny bonus may affect that. Gardevoir is a reasonable Pokémon for raids and under certain circumstances for PvP, and in Galvantula, those hunting for an asset to their Great League will find a great option.

All day

  • Known spawns for non ticket holders: Chimecho, Kricketot, Audino, Whismur, Tympole, Meloetta Hat Pikachu
  • Known spawns for Ticket holders: Unown F and Unown G
  • Raids: Galarian Weezing, Hitmontop, Cranidos, Deino, costumed Galarian Ponyta and Zigzagoon
  • Ticketed research: Pop Star and Rock Star Pikachu, Meloetta Hat Gardevoir and Flygon

Let’s start with the four brand-new shinies/shiny families for the day – Chimecho, Audino, Whismur and Tympole. These will be a top target for everybody both because they will be getting their first release, but also because Whismur and Tympole, as three-stage families, could be difficult to for the perfectionists to complete. Audino is also a favourite Pokémon for many and will be hunted for that, while Chimecho’s bonus dust on catch will have many catching them en masse, shiny or no shiny.

For non ticket holders, that leaves Kricketot and Meloetta Pikachu. While not a useful Pokémon, Kricketot’s a great shiny, and it has a boosted shiny rate which should help ensure success. As for Meloetta Pikachu, it will be a top target, as it’s likely it will spawn for this event only.

And for ticket holders, there’s Unowns F and G. Pretty simple here – make these two your first priority every time you see them. Maybe you managed to snag the shiny G last year, but shiny Unowns have some of the best trade currency, so it’s worth going after both, even though only the F is new.

Ticket holders will also have access to either Rock Star or Pop Star Pikachu through research depending on which they choose (see our Ultra Unlock article for more), and after the research is complete, will be able to encounter at least one more of the chosen Pikachu through snapshots, though this only on Saturday.

On Sunday, a snapshot will instead reward either Meloetta Hat Gardevoir or Flygon, depending on your choices in the research on Saturday. Ticketed players, do not forget to do these snapshots on both days – even if it only turns out to be one extra Pop Star or Rock Star Pikachu, or Meloetta Hat Gardevoir or Flygon, trading looks to be the only route to get hold of both musical Pikachus and both hatted exclusives.

Finally, it’s worth talking briefly about the available raids. I wouldn’t recommend going too hard on Day 1 raids, because the 2-minute countdown can eat more time than is worth it for the Pokémon you catch.

If you are going to raid on day 1, I would focus on Deino and the two costumed Galarians, all of three which can be shiny, with the latter two likely exclusive to this year’s Go Fest. The slight caveat to that is that it’s not especially obvious why Hitmontop, Galarian Weezing and Cranidos would be in raids on Go Fest Day 1.

They don’t work with the musical theme, and Cranidos could probably have fit into Desert Mountain as a normal spawn, while Hitmontop is interesting as it’s the only evolved member of the family without its shiny available. Galarian Weezing has only been in raids intermittently since its release, but probably enough for most to have it in their dex.

This is pure speculation on my part, but there may be a tiny possibility that Cranidos, Galarian Weezing and Hitmontop will be surprise shiny releases. Keep an eye out here on the Hub and in other Pokémon Go news channels like the Silph Road and Leek Duck and confirm one way or the other before you raid them, though – New Zealand will be getting Go Fest first, so by the time most of us start our day 1, we’ll know for sure what’s going on.

Go Fest Day 2

Time: 18 July, 10:00am to 6:00pm local time.

Legendary Raids GO Fest 2021

Now, day 2 is the day to raid. Worth remembering that in the announcement, Niantic said that every Pokémon available in the wild on day 1 will also be spawning on day 2.

Judging by the phrasing, that may mean that the day 1 ticket spawns won’t be appearing on day 2, but it’s hard to be sure. Check out our Legendary Raid Day guide for more, and again, watch for Pokémon Go Fest news as it breaks.

I would recommend keeping an eye on the wild spawns for any missed shiny opportunities, and utilising your Go Plus if you’ve got one to pick up whatever you can while raiding. So, let’s talk about the raids themselves – given nearly every previously released legendary is on offer, it’s an exciting line-up!

As with day 1, there are four rotating hours which will come around twice – Wind Hour, Lava Hour, Frost Hour and Thunder Hour – and what time these hours are for you will vary depending on your time zone.

Wind Hour 🌬️

Available raids (counter guides linked): Mewtwo, Ho-Oh, Latias, Latios, Regigigas, Altered Forme Giratina, Cresselia, Virizion, Therian Forme Tornadus

We all know who’s going to be the star of Wind Hour – Mewtwo. One of the most powerful Pokémon in the game, plus pure childhood nostalgia, plus an excellent shiny, equals a winner. If you’ve never had a shot at Mewtwo, make this top of your list. Don’t have the shiny? Top of the list. And everyone else will be after the elusive 15 attack stat, so, you know, top of the list. But we shouldn’t ignore the rest of the Wind Hour roster.

Ho-Oh is a great shiny with reasonable utility. Latios and Latias are quality dragons with quality shiny variants.

Altered Forme Giratina is an excellent option in Ultra League PvP, and while not everyone loves the shiny, I think we can all agree it’s at least different!

Cresselia is another great one for Ultra League, also with a great shiny available.

Virizion can be useful in Master League, and its shiny was originally released in the height of the pandemic last year, when most of us had limited opportunity to raid. Its return earlier this year was short enough that there will be a few people still looking for that shiny (me included).

That leaves Regigigas and Therian Forme Tornadus, both of whom were released recently enough that they’re probably going to be less popular targets.

Lava Hour 🌋

Available raids (counter guides linked): Moltres, Entei, Regirock, Groudon, Heatran, Reshiram, Terrakion, Therian Forme Landorus, and Yveltal

So, with the exception of Reshiram, Landorus and Yveltal, everything here is shiny potential. Beyond that, where you put your focus for Lava Hour is really going to depend on what you want out of it.

If you’re looking for the best fire type, Moltres is your guy. I would also point out Groudon and Heatran – both are good to great in Master League if that’s your jam, and pretty solid raid and Gym attackers.

If you’re looking for dex entries, Entei, Groudon, Reshiram and Terrakion have all either been out of rotation for a while, or have had only very short recent stays.

Again, the two who we’ve seen the shortest time ago, Landorus and Yveltal, are likely to be the least favoured raids for Lava.

Frost Hour ❄️

Available raids (counter guides linked): Articuno, Suicune, Lugia, Regice, Kyogre, Palkia, and Kyurem – plus Uxie, Mesprit, and Azelf in their respective regions.

Frost Hour is also primarily shiny potential, but there’s plenty of nice utility Pokémon too. Articuno is a highly favoured PvP Pokémon in Ultra League, where its Icy Wind makes a mess of many opponents.

Suicune is a semi-reasonable option in Ultra too, but if you can get Articuno, you’d rather have Articuno.

I’d call Articuno one of the top two targets for Frost Hour, along with top-tier water type Kyogre.

Lugia’s a really popular Pokémon with a great shiny, and has some limited use across the Pokémon Go spectrum, so it’s a great choice if you haven’t grabbed one for your dex before, though as one of the longest-standing legendaries in raids and the first legendary to be available shiny in the game, keep in mind you may need to convince your friends to help you out!

Palkia hasn’t been available in raids for over a year, so a great target for the dex hunters, though without its shiny available, those who already have it would mostly leave it be…if it wasn’t for the fact that the (hopefully) upcoming Global Challenge Ultra Unlock  – the second unlock, Space, seems to point to Palkia, which is the Spatial Pokémon, and I’m speculating wildly here, but that could mean that even will see the shiny released.

I’d expect some interest for Kyurem, who’s also been out of raids for quite a while, but without the shiny, most will just be hunting the XL candy. As for the Lake Trio regional raids, it’s hard to know how keen people will be.

The Pokémon themselves are not useful at all, but they are very, very rare in the wild in their own regions, so there will be those who will need the dex entry. However, mostly the interest will be from people with international friends, who might be able to get invites for the members of the Lake Trio that don’t spawn in their area. Overall, I think they’re probably going to be low priority for most.

Thunder Hour ⛈️

Available raids (counter guides linked): Zapdos, Raikou, Registeel, Rayquaza, Dialga, Cobalion, Therian Forme Thundurus, Zekrom, and Xerneas will be appearing in five-star raids.

This is the difficult hour, trainers. We’ve got perennial favourite and brilliant shiny Rayquaza, the excellent (but non-shiny) Dialga, and the high-tier electric dragon, Zekrom.

And that’s without even mentioning Kanto legend Zapdos and one of my personal favourites, Raikou. There’s a bit less shiny potential here, but there’s a lot of great, genuinely useful Pokémon.

Most people will focus on Ray and Dialga, especially with the latter looking likely for the first Ultra Unlock – Time, and a possible shiny release during that event. Zekrom rounds out the top targets for Thunder Hour, being both a fan favourite Pokémon and a quality electric type.

Thundurus, Xerneas, and Registeel have all been raids too recently to be of much interest to most. There will be those who want Cobalion either for the dex, as it has been a little while since its last visit.

Taking care of yourself

So, we know what’s on offer across both days, and by now hopefully you know who your top targets are. Now it’s time to think of how to best prepare you for what is sure to be an epic GO Fest weekend.

Beware the sun

This may not be on your radar, particularly if you live a colder climate, but seriously, protect your skin.

The fact is if you’re able to play the full event outdoors, short of torrential rain, the sun is going to get you, and as some who lives in a very hot country, I can tell you that if you get bad sunburn on day 1, you’re going to be rocking a fever and some serious misery on day 2.

So use sunscreen, and consider a hat, sunglasses and keeping as much skin covered as is comfortable. Here’s our recommendations for these products (contains Amazon Affiliate links if you want to support the Hub):

Sunscreen Hat Sunglasses

Food, water and breaks

Make sure you pack at least some food and water, and try and make time in the day to eat an actual meal. More broadly, pick a bag you can comfortably carry all day. If you’re determined to grind the whole weekend, you should still figure out which of the rotating hours is likely to be your quietest so you can take some short breaks.

Dress for success

I cannot stress this enough – choose comfortable clothes, and especially comfortable shoes. Make sure you’re dressed appropriately for your weather, and try to avoid anything that is likely to irritate your skin and in particularly your feet – make sure nothing’s too tight, and your shoes are worn in.


This one is pretty straightforward – charge your batteries, pack them all, even if you don’t think you’ll need them, and make sure you have spare cords for yourself. For the really intense grinds, if you have a Go Plus or other device, pack some spare batteries, and bring a small screwdriver or whatever tool you need to do a replacement on the go.

The pandemic

The state of things around the world is…about as all over the place as you’d expect in a pandemic. At this stage, things are looking good for my area, but in other parts of Australia, it’s not so positive. This is the most important part of this article – whatever your government wants you to do to stay safe in the current situation, do it. Wear your mask, get your jab, and stay home if that’s what your restrictions require.

Thanks to all the bonus remote raid passes, it will still be possible to do really well out of Go Fest day 2 from home, if that’s where you have to be. Day 1 will be a little trickier, but if you’ve got an exercise allowance, I would encourage you to choose whatever of the rotating hours looks most exciting to you and take your exercise in that hour. I did that for last year’s Fest while I was locked-down and still got some great shinies.

And if you’ve got a ticket, incense will bring all the great spawns listed above right into your house.

Remember – we love this game, but nothing’s more important than your wellbeing and safety.

Final thoughts

So, you will have noticed by now that there is an insanely large number of Pokémon available across Go Fest weekend. You’re probably feeling completely overwhelmed – I know I was when I first sat down to write this article and realised how much there was to cover! So, how do we take it all and boil it down? My approach has been to make a target list, more to order everything in my mind than to necessarily refer to on the day. It’ll help me know what to click on first in what are sure to be some huge clusters, and also when to take a break, or dial down the grind. My target list is below as an example.

Day 1 shiny targets

  • Jungle: Aipom
  • Desert Mountain: Hippopotas
  • Ocean Beach: Alomomola, Sawk
  • Cave: Roggenrola, Deino
  • All day: Whismur, Chimecho, Audino, Tympole, Unown F

Day 2 raid targets

  • Wind: Mewtwo, Virizion (shiny)
  • Lava: None, XP only
  • Frost: Palkia, Kyurem (better IVs)
  • Thunder: Dialga, Rayquaza, Zekrom

So for me, the best time to take breaks on day 1 is likely to be the Jungle and Desert Mountain Hours, and for day 2, the two Lava Hours. Meanwhile, Cave is likely to be my day 1 peak grind, with Wind and Thunder battling it out on day 2. (I really want that pink Virizion!)

And that’s everything – thanks for staying with me through this guide to Go Fest 2021, trainers! One last thought for you – while this guide has been all about how to get the best out of this most excellent weekend, getting the best also means having a great time.

So happy Go Fest, everyone– I wish all of you all the shiny luck, the best IV legendaries, a full dex, and all the XP you’ve ever wanted!