Pokémon GO in December: PvP Priorities

G’day PoGO lovers. With the new Timeless Travels season comes the fresh release of December content. I must say, the new season’s spawns have been fantastic, but the recent events have been a bit hit and miss – so let’s take a sneak peak at the PvP side of the new events this month! I’ll be diving into some of the upcoming events in more detail in the coming weeks!

Spotlight Hours

Date Pokémon Bonus
December  5, 2023 Feebas
Candy icon 2× Candy for catching Pokémon
December 12, 2023 Seel
Candy icon 2× Transfer Candy
December 19, 2023 Snorunt
XP icon 2× Evolution XP
December 26, 2023 Vanillite
Stardust icon 2× Stardust for catching Pokémon

December’s spotlight hours are overall not bad for PvP – each of them have a reason to be playing on Tuesday nights.


Feebas is available on December 5 with 2x catch candy. Milotic is actually quite decent in the Great League and particularly the Ultra League. Feebas isn’t a super common spawn so now’s a good time to pick some up. Extra bulk tends to produce better results, allowing Milotic to hang around and continue to deal out unresisted damage. 


Seel is available on December 12 with 2x transfer candy. Dewgong is a real menace in the Great League, particularly since the addition of Drill Run into its repertoire. It can now hit most things flying and on the ground for super effective damage, and its excellent stat product and debuffing Icy Wind allows it to stick around longer than you’d hope. The main challenge with building a Dewgong is that its best moveset involves both a legacy Fast move (Ice Shard) and Charged move (Icy Wind). Still, if you’re willing to invest, it’s well worth it.

Seel is a fantastic Little cup pick, and doesn’t require any legacy moves! Seel has an excellent moveset and great bulk, making it a versatile part of your team. 

Don’t sleep on the chance to get 2x transfer candy for your spare legendaries!


Snorunt is available on December 19 with 2x evolution XP. Froslass is a fantastic Great League pick, particularly in limited metas and as an excellent counter to Medicham. Its unique typing allows it to resist fighting damage, and its spammy powerful moveset helps to threaten shields and deal out at least unresisted damage in most situations. The male evolution Glalie isn’t quite as potent in the Great League due to lacking the helpful Ghost typing of the female variant and a slightly slower moveset. 

Snorunt itself is actually very decent in the Little Cup metas, with the same moveset as Fros and slightly better bulk than the comparable Swinub.


Vanillite is available on December 26 with 2x stardust per catch. Vanilluxe is frankly a complete waste of time in PvP – if you need a break from spending time with your loved ones, you can always use the 2x stardust opportunity or hunt for the newly released shiny!

5 Star Raids

Pokémon Dates
Reshiram From December 1 to 9 Reshiram will appear in five-star raids, and can be shiny.
Zekrom From December 9 to 16 Zekrom will appear in five-star raids, and can be shiny.
Kyurem From December 16 to 23 Kyurem will appear in five-star raids, and can be shiny.
Regigigas From December 23 to January 1 Regigigas will appear in five-star raids, and it can be shiny.

From a PvP perspective, the return of the Tao trio in raids is the definite highlight! However, similar to November, none of the featured mons will have their signature moves, meaning you’ll need to burn an Elite Charged TM if you want to maximise their PvP potential.


Reshiram is a spicy pick in the Master League PvP meta, although you could argue that it’s actually less effective with its signature move Fusion Flare, which isn’t going to be available as an exclusive move during this rotation. Reshi sees its best win-loss ratio (in the sims anyway) with the moveset Dragon Breath, Crunch and ditching its signature move for the harder hitting nuke move Overheat. However, this is definitely the riskier play and makes Reshi more of a spice pick than a consistent lock in the meta.

Where Reshi really shines is as a Fire type raid attacker, coming in at #4 in the overall standings today with Fire Fang and Fusion Flare. This is where you really do want Reshi’s signature move, so if you’re willing to shell out an Elite Charged TM for the cause, this could be a good opportunity to raid for the hundo and grind for some XL candy.


Zekrom is another spicy Master League pick that can function very well as an answer to Metagross and most Flying and Water types in the meta. You’ll want to run Zekrom with Dragon Breath, Crunch and either of the debuffing Wild Charge or the slightly more expensive legacy move Fusion Bolt. Zekrom caught in raids for this rotation won’t have its signature move, so either use this time to get the XL candy to power one up, or if you do catch the hundo… that’s your tough call to make on whether to shell out the Elite TM!

Zekrom is also fantastic as an Electric type attacker, coming in at #3 in the overall standings with Charge Beam and legacy Fusion Bolt. Again, you probably want the legacy move for Zekrom, but it’s not overall necessary for Zekrom to be functional. If you’ve got some excess Elite Charged TMs to use then go for it.


Kyurem has previously been in a bit of an awkward spot in both PvP and particularly PvE with a not so great moveset and typing. However, with the recent addition of the charged move Glaciate to its movepool, Kyurem now has a decent amount of play in the Master League, and even the Ultra League. With the ability to debuff its opponents attack with the fairly cheap Glaciate, it can now stay in battle for longer and often allows it to dish out enough Dragon type damage to flip switch advantage your way. It can be a bit limited in its role without any nuke moves to access quickly, but it is definitely worth consideration for your roster.

In PvE, Kyurem would love an Ice type fast move to make it even more effective as a raid attacker. It’s not bad by any means… but it would love to reach its full potential! Unfortunately, Niantic don’t have too many options up their sleeve here, probably needing to turn the move Freeze-Dry into a fast move or something else funky.

However, the future could be even brighter, depending on how Niantic want to treat the fuse-formed Black and White Kyurem. These could be released through a new forme change mechanic (which we’ve recently seen with the release of Meteorites for Rayquaza) or as standalone raids. Time will tell, but in the meantime, for PvP Kyurem is good today!


Regigigas today in PvP is, to put it frankly, bad. Regi has colossal stats but lacks a decent fast move (it is currently stuck with the underwhelming Hidden Power) or a low energy Charged move to help it out. It’s rumoured that Regi will soon be getting access to the move Crush Grip – time will tell whether this has any significant implications for its place in the meta.

Normal types are not worth it in raids due to their inability to hit any pokémon for super effective damage. Regi is no different in this regard so I wouldn’t prioritise a PvE build.

Mega Raids

Pokémon Dates
Scizor (Mega) From December 1 – 9 Mega Scizor will appear in Mega Raids.
Altaria (Mega) From December 9 – 16 Mega Altaria will appear in Mega Raids.
Abomasnow (Mega) From December 16 – 23 Mega Abomasnow will appear in Mega Raids.
Glalie (Mega) From December 23 – Jan 1 Mega Glalie will appear in Mega Raids.

From a PvP perspective, sadly none of the mega raids in December have a lot to offer. If you’re considering them from a PvP perspective:

  • Scizor is preferable as a shadow, and is typically better in limited metas. It’s not bad, but it can be hard to navigate its double weakness to fire and its flimsiness makes it hard to use in the open meta.
  • Altaria has fallen from grace a bit in recent times with the continued nerfs to Sky Attack, however it is still a decent pick due to its great typing. You probably want a bulky version which would be obtainable in the wild (not through the raids due to the 10-10-10 IV floor) but you could do worse. Probably the bigger issue is that you do want the move Moonblast on your Altaria, which is a legacy community day move. Therefore, my recommendation would be to give these a miss aside from getting the mega energy.
  • Abomasnow is also probably better as a shadow, but you can potentially get away with a raid IV variant if you’re desperate. The big snowman is a really good pick but can be tricky to work around its many typing weaknesses. Though, it has just been gifted access to a new toy in Icy Wind, which the sims seem to suggest is helping it a lot! 
  • Glalie… see above.

Community Day

Pokémon Community Day 2023

The December Community day will be a big weekend, featuring 2023 Community Days spawning in the wild, and 2022 Community Pokémon in eggs. If you missed out on any of these community days throughout the last year or two, now is a great chance to add to your roster. I’ll be taking a look at the PvP priorities for this weekend shortly!


The December events so far look ok for PvP! Let’s take a quick look at what we know.

Hisuian Samurott Raid Day Hisuian Samurott Raid Day
December 3, 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Hisuian Samurott raid day has come and gone. The Hisuian variant is mostly a spice pick at best in the Great and Ultra League.

Along the Routes
December 5-8, 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.

The Along the Routes event is going to involve lots of exploring routes and walking around! The main wild spawn I would prioritise is Wooloo, as its evolution Dubwool can be really decent as a safe swap in the Great and Ultra league. The Ultra League variant needs to be maxed out so this is a good chance to grind for XL candy. The real excitement will be trying to get your hands on the new shiny Hisuian Sneasle! It’s also worth picking up a decent Slugma (for Magcargo) and Emolga while they’re around, if you don’t have one yet.

Catch Mastery: Ice
December 9, 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.

The Catch Mastery event will feature the new shiny of Cryogonal, plus Snorunt and Bergmite in droves. Cryogonal isn’t great in PvP, but can bring a bit of spice in the Ultra League where its bulk allows it to have a bit more utility. Hisuian Avalugg is decent in the Master League, and just got access to Icy Wind, so this is a great time to grind for the XL candy you need to max one out.

Adamant Time
December 11-15, 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.

Adamant Time is a throwback to the Kanto region. There’s a lot happening with this event, so I’ll dive into it from a PvP perspective properly soon.

Pokémon GO Default Winter Holiday Part 1
December 18-25, 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Pokémon GO Default Raid Day: Wyrdeer
December 23, 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Pokémon GO Default Winter Wonderland
December 23-24, 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Pokémon GO Default Winter Holiday: Part 2
December 25-31, 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.

We don’t know all the details yet for these events, but we’ll come back to you with more details once we do.

And that wraps December up in a bow for now! As always, you can find me on Twitter or Instagram for more monthly event analysis. Good luck with your Christmas shiny hunt!

See ya later,


Author & tags

The one enlisted to explain games to new starters. Lover of all things Pokemon. Great League and Ultra League PvP specialist, and a dabbler in PvE.

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