Building a Team with the Kanto Celebration

Building a Team with the Kanto Celebration


From April 10 to April 17, 2018, Pokemon GO is hosting a Kanto Celebration event, in which the vast majority of Pokemon spawns are Gen 1 species. This isn’t a reversion to the 2016 days of Pidgey and Weedle everywhere: spawns seem to be fairly evenly distributed regardless of local biome.

In just these 7 days, players will have the opportunity to catch more of some species than they have ever seen over years of playing GO. As a bonus, all candies earned during this event are doubled, making it the prime opportunity to stock up on otherwise uncommon candy.

Even after 3 generations of Pokemon, most of the top non-legendary Pokemon in the game evolve from the original 151. For players who missed out on the best legendaries like Raikou and Kyogre, either due to taking a break from the game or living in an area where legendary raids are impossible, the Kanto Celebration is your chance to build a battle-ready team for every situation.

This article will focus on common spawns only. Rare spawns should be an auto catch, no matter your goals.

Hail to the Chief

Weather Boost: Cloudy

  • Top Fighting Attacker

Captures to evolve: 9 with Pinap, 16 without Pinap

It should come as no surprise that Machop is top priority. If you don’t already have a team of 6 maxed out, near perfect, Counter + Dynamic Punch Machamp, then you should be encountering every Machop you see. If you have a Pinap Berry, use that Pinap Berry. Machamp is an expensive investment and every Machop is a potential 14 candy during this event.

So you have hundreds of Machop candy. Now what? If you don’t have that perfect team, evolve your highest CP Machop (preferably weather boosted) and use it until you can replace it with a better one. It will only take you 9 captures - 16 without Pinap - to recuperate the candies used.

Oh no! You didn’t get Dynamic Punch and you don’t have any Charged TMs. Pretend like it’s 2016 and move on to your next Machop. Keep on grinding away for that candy.

Our Finest Selections

Weather Boost: Clear, Windy

  • Great Grass Attacker
  • Good Psychic Attacker

Captures to evolve: 4 with Pinap, 7 without Pinap

Though Exeggutor now shares its verdant throne with Venusaur, you only had 3 hours to get one with Frenzy Plant. In contrast, you have 7 days to get all the Exeggutor you ever need and then some. Exeggutor is not as expensive an investment as Machamp, so consider using your Pinap Berries elsewhere.

Weather Boost: Rain

  • Great Water Attacker

Captures to evolve: 29 with Pinap, 51 without Pinap

Gyarados is to all other Water-types what Kyogre is to Gyarados. That is, if you don’t have 6 maxed out Kyogre, Gyarados is by far the next best Water-type. With 3 generations in the mix, Magikarp became an endangered species, exacerbating its steep evolution cost of 400 candy. It's a species to consider saving Pinap Berries for, although note that it will still require about 29 Pinap’d captures to make a Gyarados.

Weather Boost: Partly Cloudy

  • Good Psychic Attacker
  • Good Water Attacker
  • Good Electric Attacker
  • Good Fire Attacker

Captures to evolve: 2 with Pinap, 4 without Pinap

Eevee’s evolutions have fallen a long way from their former glory, but Eevee is still a very useful Pokemon, with the potential to evolve into 5 different species great in their respective roles. Though now eclipsed by legendary Pokemon, Espeon, Umbreon, Vaporeon, Jolteon, and Flareon are fantastic budget options to fill gaps in teams. Also consider holding on to some spare Eevee, as 2 more evolutions are right around the corner in Gen 4.

Eevee was one of the most common spawns in the old days, but it too has become an endangered species in all but partly cloudy weather. One major advantage is a cheap evolution cost of 25 candy, although getting the desired non-Espeon evolution may take a few tries. Use your Pinap Berries elsewhere.

Noteworthy Figures

Weather Boost: Clear, Partly Cloudy

  • Great Rock Attacker

Captures to evolve: 9 with Pinap, 16 without Pinap

Golem’s heyday was during the legendary bird era; since then, it has not had much impact. It’s still the best Rock attacker in GO and may cling on to that title in Gen 4 if Niantic neglects to introduce another Rock-type fast move. There are a handful of raids in which Golem is the best counter by a huge margin, although there’s no knowing when those raids may return.

As it stands, Golem is in big danger of being made obsolete, but it can’t hurt to hold on to a few good specimens, in case they get their chance to shine in the future.

Weather Boost: Windy

  • Good Psychic Attacker

Captures to evolve: 9 with Pinap, 16 without Pinap

Many of the recent legendary Pokemon - Latios, Lugia, and Rayquaza - do what Alakazam can do, but far more reliably. If you lack legendary Pokemon, Alakazam remains a cornerstone of Machamp and Gengar raids. Espeon does almost the exact same thing, but every Alakazam that you have is an Eevee that you can evolve into something else, for what it’s worth.

Weather Boost: Cloudy, Fog

  • Great Ghost Attacker

Captures to evolve: 9 with Pinap, 16 without Pinap

Gengar plays a helpful, but not critical, role in many Tier 3 solos. Its utility in legendary raids, where its low bulk gets exposed, is more questionable. Gastly is a more common non-event spawn than most of the other species featured in this article, so maybe you don’t have to jump at every one that you see.

Weather Boost: Clear

  • Good Fire Attacker

Captures to evolve: 9 with Pinap, 16 without Pinap

If you don’t feel confident packing only Flareon on a Fire-type squad, consider Charizard! But let’s be real: after Bulbasaur’s Community Day, no one wants to evolve a good Charmander. Save your best ones and cross your fingers for a Charmander Community Day in the near future.

In Generations Beyond

Weather Boost: Rain, Snow

  • Potential Electric Attacker
  • Potential Steel Attacker

Magneton’s Gen 4 evolution to Magnezone gives it stats in the same echelon as the Electric legendaries Raikou and Zapdos. It’s a candidate for the best non-legendary Electric attacker given the right moveset.

Weather Boost: Clear, Partly Cloudy

  • Good Ground Attacker
  • Potential Rock Attacker

Anything Ground-type not coming from Groudon is pretty weak, which is why Rhydon wasn’t featured as a currently relevant attacker. A Gen 4 evolution to Rhyperior boosts great stats to elite levels. It definitely can’t be ignored.