Shadow Pokemon are the newest addition to Pokemon GO and are only available after defeating a Team Rocket Invasion on a PokeStop near you. Shadow Pokemon are Pokemon that are used for maleficent purposes, most commonly by Team Rocket. Shadow Pokemon can be caught and purified into Purified versions of normal Pokemon. Each Shadow Pokémon knows a Charged Attack called Frustration.

More information:

  • Shadow Pokemon don’t have an IV floor,
  • Shadow Pokemon are levels 1 -5 and or 1 – 10 if Weather Boosted
  • When purified Shadow Pokemon get +2 to every IV
  • Purified Pokemon are always level 25
  • Purified Pokemon cost 90% Stardust and Candy to power up, evolve and unlock second charge move

How to find Shadow Pokemon

Shadow Pokemon are only available from Team Rocket battles. When defeating a Team GO Rocket grunt, you will encounter one of the first two Pokemon he used. That Pokemon will be available in it’s Shadow Form.

List of available Shadow Pokemon

  • Bulbasaur
  • Ivysaur
  • Venusaur
  • Charmander
  • Charmeleon
  • Charizard
  • Squirtle
  • Wartortle
  • Blastoise
  • Rattata
  • Raticate
  • Zubat
  • Golbat
  • Snorlax
  • Dratini
  • Dragonair
  • Dragonite
  • Crobat
  • Mudkip
  • Marshtomp
  • Swampert
  • Poliwag
  • Grimer
  • Muk
  • Drowzee
  • Hypno
  • Cubone
  • Scyther
  • Magikarp
  • Houndour
  • Houndoom

Catching Shadow Pokemon

Wondering how to get Shadow Pokemon in Pokemon GO? Worry not, everything you have to do is to find a Team GO Rocket PokeStop and defeat the Team Rocket Grunt in a Trainer Battle.

After winning a Team Rocket battle, you will be awarded with XP and a chance to catch one of the Shadow Pokemon that Team GO Rocket left behind. In order to catch the Shadow Pokemon, each player is granted a number of Premier Balls which are only usable for the Shadow Pokémon Encounter. The number of Premier Balls received is based on how many of your Pokémon survive the battle, your Purify Pokemon Medal rank, and your Defeat Team Rocket Medal rank.

At the beginning, you will get 5 Premier Balls if you win the battle with no fainted Pokemon. Catching Shadow versions of regular Pokemon is similar to catching a raid boss, but you get way less Premier Balls.

Purifying Shadow Pokemon

Shadow Pokemon can be purified for 2000 Stardust and 2 Candy. Purifying a Shadow Pokemon will do the following:

  • Increase the Pokemon’s IV values by +2 (guaranteed)
  • Increase the Pokemon’s level to Level 25 (guaranteed)
  • Replace Frustration with Return, a 3-bar Normal type charge move

Purifying a Shadow Pokémon will also make it stronger and reduce the amount of Stardust and Candy required to Power Up, Evolve, or learn a new attack. Purified Pokemon have a special marker in the Pokemon storage screen, but they can be mass transferred, so be careful when selecting Pokemon for transfer.

Shadow and Purified Pokemon IV values

Shadow Pokemon are caught at Levels 1 – 10 with a randomized set of IV values. They can be Weather Boosted, just as normal Pokemon and raid bosses can be boosted. Purified Pokemon are always Level 25 and have increased IV values.

As we mentioned above, Purified Pokemon get a +2 increase in each IV value. As a result, a Shadow Pokemon with 13 / 13 / 13 IVs is guaranteed to become a 100% Purified Pokemon. Shadow Pokemon can be weather boosted, which increases their minimum IVs to 4 / 4 / 4 and increases the chance of getting a better Purified Pokemon in the process.

NOTE: If your Shadow Pokemon has 14 IV, once purified it will have 15 IV in that stat. This is a special case where +2 IVs is applied, but cuts of at 15.


Learn more about Shadow Pokemon Lore

Shadow Pokemon were first introduced in Pokémon Colosseum and Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness. They are Pokémon that are being used for wrongful acts because they had the doors to their hearts shut artificially. Liam has a wonderful in-depth article that covers the whole history and role of Shadow Pokemon in the main series games, which we suggest reading if you’re a lore buff (click on Shadow Mewtwo to start reading):

What are exactly Shadow Pokemon?
What are exactly Shadow Pokemon?