Go Fest 2020 Announced for July 25 & 26 with Global Access

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Article by Brian Tien

It's that time again my fellow trainers! Niantic has released the first details on Go Fest 2020, Pokemon Go's premier real-world annual event. This yearly event, traditionally held in Chicago, Dortmund, and Yokohama, has long been the premier event for many exciting features ranging from the original Legendary raids to Mythical Pokemon such as the Steel/Psychic Type Jirachi. However, this year it's going to be very different for one very major reason: Go Fest 2020 will be a global event!

Go Fest 2020

We don't have much information on the specifics for Go Fest 2020 so far, but here us what we can extrapolate from Niantic's official news post:

  • Go Fest 2020 will be held on July 25th and 26th
  • This is a ticketed event, meaning tickets will likely go on sale in a manner similar to recent special research tickets
  • Players who purchase a ticket will be entitled to special play bonuses on both days of the event
  • The event is eluded to have both a special spawn-set and a special research line
  • The event is stated to be in a "virtual format". This could just be a way of saying that it's not geo-locked like previous events, but it could also mean that Niantic intends to utilize their upcoming new AR augmentation updates in some way during this event
  • Niantic apparently has plans for other events throughout the summer focused on "ways to connect with other trainers", meaning we may still be getting other in-person events, or they may be planning on making remote play options even more robust. We can only speculate for now.

Go Fest 2020: Speculation

Based on past Go Fest events, it's fairly reasonable to speculate on specific bonuses that we may experience during Go Fest 2020. Please note that this section is purely speculative, and that none of this information is currently confirmed,

New Mythical Pokemon

Traditionally, Go Fest sees the release of the "Mew"-type mythical Pokemon of a given generation, and that makes this a very likely potential outcome for this year as well.

On the top of the list are the two Mythical Pokemon that are the closest in design and stat-line to Mew.

Manaphy and Phione, Shaymin and its Sky Forme

Manaphy seems to be the most likely release for this event, as it follows the same basic lines as Mew the closest: a simple design with no added formes or other complications. The only issue is that Manaphy is closely related to Phione, a Pokemon that Manaphy mustbe bred in order to produce in the main series, making it unique as the only Mythical Pokemon that can breed. If we see Manaphy, we'll probably see Phione not far behind.

The other Pokemon that follows closely behind the Mew mold is Shaymin. This hedgehog-like Pokemon follows the lines previously set perfectly, and is another likely choice. The one caveat here is the fact that Shaymin also has a very different alternate version; its Sky Forme. This forme is definitely a departure from the Go Fest norm, though all alternate formes released thus far have been unable to change and are basically their own unique Pokemon in Go, so this is not a huge issue.


Another fairly strong possibility, Victini is a Generation 5 Mythical Pokemon that is that generation's "Mew".  We currently have precedent for skipping Pokemon generations with the release of Genesect, so this is a possibility.

Meloetta/Meloetta Pirouette Forme 

Another Generation 5 mythical Pokemon, Meloetta's two formes could also join at this point, though it seems a bit less likely as they break the mold a bit too much in general. One major issue with Meloetta is the fact that its Pirouette Forme is somewhat unique due to the fact that it only exists in-battle after Meloetta uses its signature attack, Relic Song, and reverts to normal post-battle. Still, Pokemon Go could just treat them as two normal formes.


After Manaphy, Phione, and Shaymin's two formes, Arceus will be the last Mythical Pokemon to be released from Generation 4. Arceus is... difficult. Its unique ability in the main series is that it has a unique forme for every single type in the game, which makes it somewhat awkward, especially for those who want a specific type. It also has a signature attack, Judgement, which changes type based on Arceus' type, so there's no telling where Niantic could go with this right now.

Keldeo and Keldeo: Resolute Forme

Keldeo is the other potential Generation 5 mythic, though it seems the least likely candidate on this list for various reasons. Note-worthy here is the fact that Keldeo also has a Resolute Forme which is achieved when it knows its signature attack, Secret Sword (not to be confused with Sacred Sword). 

Kyurem Black/White

This one is worthy of its own unique section. By the time Go Fest is here, the Tao trio will probably be fully released. So why not give us Kyurem Black and Kyurem White for the event? These massively potent Dragons are prepared to weigh heavily on Pokemon Go, and their release could be a huge deal for this new style of event.

Signature Moves

Niantic has been trickling out new signature moves bit by bit as of late, so it's reasonable to think that we could see even more released for Go Fest. Among what we have now (or will be getting soon), here are a few of the big ones.

Lugia and Ho-Oh

Some of the most common raid bosses out there, yet both still lack their signature attacks.

Lugia was set to receive its signature Flying Type move, Aeroblast, a while back, yet the event was never rescheduled. Meanwhile, we've never heard anything about Ho-Oh's Fire Type signature move, Sacred Fire. Maybe now that they've given it earthquake, they can finally release a move to make this fan-favorite less worthless...? (Please?)

Groudon, Kyogre, and Rayquaza

The weather trio is another fan-favorite grouping, and they all have very potent attacks to wield in the main series.

Groudon has had its signature attack, Precipice Blades, in the game for years now, but hasn't had access to it. In like manner, Kyogre has longed for Origin Pulse for just as long. Perhaps now is the time for these titans to rise? Likewise, Rayquaza can learn Dragon Ascent in the main series, a massively powerful Flying Type move. This could give us a hugely powerful Flying Type attacker, and perhaps give Rayquaza real utility in PvP finally.

Dialga, Palkia, and Giratina

The creation Trio all have signature attacks too, and they could be a bit meta-warping depending on their implementation.

Dialga's signature attack is the Dragon Type Roar of Time, a massively powerful attack designed to be the same as the starter exclusive moves (Frenzy Plant, Blast Burn, and Hydro Cannon) in the main series. Palkia has Spacial Rend, another Dragon type attack with very good power and a high critical rate. Perhaps this could buff attack in PvP? Lastly, Giratina's two formes have Shadow Force, a powerful Ghost Type move. Given the pervasiveness of Giratina-Origin in raids and both types in PvP, this could have huge implications. 

Reshiram, Zekrom, and Kyurem

Probably the least likely on this list, the Tao trio could see the release of their moves... and oh boy, do we have a lot to cover here!

Reshiram has two moves: Fusion Flare and Blue Flame. Both are Fire Type attacks, and ideally they could translate into a fast and charged move respectively.

Zekrom is in the same boat with the Electric Type Fusion Bolt and Bolt Strike. Again, these could drop as a fast/charged move ideally.

Kyurem has one signature move in its base forme: the Ice type Glaciate. That said, Kyurem Black can learn Zekrom's Fusion Bolt in conjunction with a new and extremely powerful Freeze Shock, while Kyurem White has Kyurem's Fusion Flare and an equally powerful Ice Burn.

And Many Others!

Signature attacks are not limited to legendary Pokemon! Many other Pokemon have them, and we could see an expansion to any number of movesets with this event. Either way, it might be a good idea to hold onto those Elite TMs for now!

Full Announcement

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In 2019, our Pokémon GO Fest lineup was bigger and better than ever before. That summer, we held more than one Pokémon GO Fest in the same year for the first time ever! Chicago, Dortmund, and Yokohama hosted individual Pokémon GO Fest events that, in total, brought together over 600,000 Trainers for a special summer of live events.

This year, we’re bringing you a totally reimagined Pokémon GO Fest experience. Save the dates: on July 25 and 26, Pokémon GO Fest 2020 will take place as an entirely global event in a virtual format, which will allow Trainers worldwide to participate from wherever they play. In another first, all ticket holders will be able to attend both days of this two-day event.

While we’ll miss the traditional congregation of Pokémon GO fans, we’re thrilled to bring a special Pokémon GO Fest experience to Trainers. Not only are you in for an exciting weekend of bonuses, Pokémon encounters, and Special Research, there will also be exciting ways to connect with other Trainers and experience other fun surprises throughout the entire summer.

Be sure to check the Niantic blog and the Pokémon GO Fest website for more updates in the coming weeks. We can’t wait to share them all with you. Until we can all meet again in the same park and under the same sky—let’s GO!

—The Pokémon GO team

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About the Author(s)

Gamepress writer with a focus on theorycrafting and gameplay optimization with a background in business management and freelance writing.  A bit of a hermit, but also an outdoors enthusiast who loves cycling and hiking. Long-time Gamepress fan who is very proud to be a part of the team.