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Niantic Announces Go Battle League Season 9

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Yet another season of Go Battle League is coming to a close, and with it we have yet another season to look forward to. The announcement is in, the goals are set, so let's close out Season 8, and jump right into Season 9!

Go Battle League: Season 9

Season 9 Duration
Season Start Season End
August 30, 2021 November 29, 2021
Season 9 Breakdown
League/Cup Start Date End Date Bonus
Great League + Remix August 30, 2021 September 13, 2021
Ultra League + Remix September 13, 2021 September 27, 2021
Master League + Classic + Little Jungle Cup September 27, 2021 October 11, 2021 3x Stardust Winnings
Great League October 11, 2021 October 25, 2021
Halloween Cup October 15, 2021 November 2, 2021
Ultra League + Premier Classic October 25, 2021 November 8, 2021
Master League + Premier Classic + Players' Choice November 8, 2021 November 22, 2021 3x Stardust Winnings
All Leagues November 22, 2021 November 29, 2021

Go Battle Days

It seems that Go Battle Nights are going away in favor of Go Battle Days. During these days, players will be able to complete a total of 20 sets, making it far less taxing on players for the same effect. These days will also include 4x Stardust rewards, though this effect won't stack with the 3x Stardust bonus that will be active during one of them. These events will last from 12:00 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. local time on their days.

  • Saturday, September 18
  • Monday, November 1
  • Saturday, November 20

The Season's Cups and Formats

Little Jungle Cup

  • Only Pokemon at or below 500 CP can enter
  • Pokemon that are at their final form can enter this time
  • The typing restriction is Normal, Grass, Electric, Ground, Poison, Flying, Bug, and Dark.
  • Shuckle and Smeargle are banned.

Halloween Cup

  • Pokemon need to be 1500 CP or lower
  • The typing restriction is Poison, Bug, Ghost, Dark, and Fairy.

Player's Choice

  • A poll will go up on the official Pokemon Go Twitter page giving players a choice of cups for this time period.

Great League Remix

  • The top-20 Pokemon from the Great League used by Ace rank + are banned from this cup:

Ultra League Remix

  • The top-10 Pokemon from the Ultra League used by Ace rank + are banned from this cup:

Season's Rewards

What's a Go Battle League season without a set of rewards? Here's what we'll be striving for this time around:

Rank 1+ Encounters

Rank 6+ Encounters

Rank 11+ Encounters

Rank 16+

Rank 20+ Encounters

The current Legendary Pokemon available in raids.

Rank Veteran+

Rank Expert+

Specific Rank Rewards

  • Rank 1: Charizard Encounter
  • Rank 3: Pikachu Libre Avatar Items
  • Rank 6: Mienfoo Encounter
  • Rank 19: Elite Charged TM and Elite Fast TM at the end of the season
  • Ace Rank: Reigning Champion Sport Glove
  • Veteran Rank: Noibat Encounter, Reigning Champion Sport Cap
  • Expert Rank: Deino Encounter, Reigning Champion Sport Shorts
  • Legend Rank: Pikachu Libre Encounter, Reigning Champion Sport Top, Leon Pose (added midway through the season)

This season, we're leaning hard into the Champion of the Galar Region: Leon, with his full outfit and pose. Shame we don't get the cape.

Season 9 Move Shakeup

And now what we've all been waiting for; the move changes for Season 9! We've got a few genuinely interesting ones to talk about, but note that any in-depth review will be saved for a follow-up article.

Weather Ball

Weather Ball Normal has been (re)added, the power for all Weather Ball variants has been dropped from 60 to 55.

Crunch

Crunch now has a chance to lower the target's Defense in PvP.

Zap Cannon

Zap Cannon now has a 100% chance to lower the target's Attack in PvP.

Scald

Scald now costs less energy, and has a chance to drop the target's Attack in PvP. Well what do 'ya know, Scald might be a real move now!

Feather Dance

Pidgeot's ace-in-the-hole now costs more energy to use.

Megahorn

Megahorn now has a higher base power.

New Attack: Sand Tomb

New Attack: Rock Blast

New Attacks: Thunder Fang, Overheat

New Attack: Weather Ball (Normal)

New Attack: Shadow Claw

(Runerigus when?)

Full Announcement

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Full Text

Trainers,

GO Battle League Season 9 is set to kick off!

Your ranking at the end of this season will be more important than it ever has, so make sure to start your climb early! As the season progresses, we’ll have more to share on how this season’s results will impact things going forward—so stay tuned!

Now, let’s get into what you can expect during GO Battle League Season 9!

Season 9 Start Date, Rank Resets, and End-of-Season Rewards

GO Battle League Season 9 will start on Monday, August 30, 2021, at 1:00 p.m. PDT (GMT −7).

The following will occur at the beginning of the season.

  • End of season rewards will be available on the battle screen.
  • Your GO Battle League rank will be reset.
  • Rank-up requirements will remain the same as in Season 8.

Season 9 Schedule

The following leagues will begin and end at 1:00 p.m. PDT (GMT −7) on the dates listed below.

Aug 30 - Sep 13

Great League

Great League Remix

Sep 13 - Sep 27

Ultra League

Ultra League Remix

Sep 27 - Oct 11

Master League*

Master League Classic*

Little Jungle Cup*

* 3× Stardust from win rewards (this does not include end of set rewards)

Oct 11 - Oct 25

Great League

Halloween Cup (begins Oct 15)

Oct 25 - Nov 8

Ultra League

UL Premier Classic

Halloween Cup (ends Nov 2)

Nov 8 - Nov 22

Master League*

ML Premier Classic*

Special Cup: Players' Choice*

* 3× Stardust from win rewards (this does not include end of set rewards)

Nov 22 - Nov 29

Great League

Ultra League

Master League

What’s new in Season 9?

GO Battle Days

To allow more Trainers to participate, GO Battle Nights will become GO Battle Days from GO Battle League Season 9 onward!

Bonuses

  • The maximum number of sets you can play per day will be increased from five to 20, for a total of 100 battles.

  • 4× Stardust from win rewards (this does not include end of set rewards and will not stack with the 3× Stardust bonus on November 20).

Dates and Times

Saturday, September 18, 2021, from 12:00 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. local time

  • The Ultra League and Ultra League Remix will be active.

Monday, November 1, 2021, from 12:00 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. local time

  • The Ultra League, the UL Premier Classic, and the Halloween Cup will be active.

Saturday, November 20, 2021, from 12:00 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. local time

  • The Master League, ML Premier Classic, and a cup chosen by Trainers will be active.

Season 9 rewards

 

Guaranteed rank-up encounters

You can encounter the following Pokémon once per season at the designated ranks. At rank 1, you’ll be guaranteed to encounter one of the Pokémon that Galar Champion Leon is known to use!

: If you're lucky, you may find a shiny one!

: Veteran Rank

: Expert Rank

: Legend Rank

 

Standard encounters

You can encounter the following Pokémon as win rewards throughout the season at the ranks shown in the image below.

: If you're lucky, you may find a shiny one!

: The Pokémon currently appearing in five-star raids has a chance of appearing as a reward encounter after you reach Rank 20.

: Veteran Rank

: Expert Rank

 

Avatar items and other rewards

Pikachu Libre avatar items will be rewarded to Trainers who reach Rank 3.

Trainers will be able to earn avatar items and a pose inspired by the champion of the Galar region, Leon, who first made his debut in Pokémon Sword and Pokémon Shield!

  • At Ace rank, you’ll receive the Reigning Champion Sport Glove.
  • At Veteran rank, you’ll receive the Leon’s Look Sport Cap.
  • At Expert rank, you’ll receive the Reigning Champion Sport Shorts.
  • At Legend rank, you’ll receive the Reigning Champion Sport Top.
  • Midway through season 9, Leon’s iconic pose will be added as a reward for Trainers who reach Legend rank.

At Rank 19, you’ll receive an Elite Charged TM, and you’ll also receive an Elite Fast TM as an end-of-season reward.

Cups

You can look forward to the following cups this season.

 

Great League Remix

The 20 Pokémon most used by Trainers Ace rank and up in the Great League will not be allowed in the Great League Remix.

The following Pokémon will not be allowed.

 

Ultra League Remix

The 10 Ultra League Pokémon most used by Trainers Ace rank and up in the Ultra League will not be allowed in the Ultra League Remix.

The following Pokémon will not be allowed.

 

Little Jungle Cup

  • Pokémon must be at or below 500 CP to enter.
  • Pokémon do not need to be able to evolve to enter.
  • Only Normal-, Grass-, Electric-, Poison-, Ground-, Flying-, Bug-, and Dark-type Pokémon are permitted.
  • Shuckle and Smeargle are not permitted.

 

Halloween Cup

  • Pokémon must be at or below 1,500 CP to enter.
  • Only Poison-, Bug-, Ghost-, Dark-, and Fairy-type Pokémon are permitted.

 

Special Cup: Players' choice

We’re interested to hear which prior special cup you’d like to see return this season! Stay tuned for a poll on Twitter later in the season to determine which cup will be held.

New attacks

 

Weather Ball

A new, low energy cost Normal-type Charged Attack.

  • Trainer Battles: 55 Damage
  • Gyms and raids: 55 Damage

Attack changes

 

Weather Ball

Weather Ball is currently a little too efficient as a low-energy Charged Attack. As a result, we’re toning down its damage just a tad.

  • Trainer Battles: 60 → 55 damage
  • Gyms and raids: 60 → 55 damage

 

Crunch

We’re adding an effect to this move when it’s used in Trainer battles to tie in with its effect in the core Pokémon RPGs.

  • Trainer Battles: Now has a chance of lowering the opposing Pokémon’s Defense.

 

Zap Cannon

We’re adding an effect to this move when it’s used in Trainer Battles to tie in with its effect in the Pokémon RPGs. We hope this will provide Pokémon like Zapdos, Regirock, Magnezone, and Porygon-Z a chance to shine.

  • Trainer Battles: Guaranteed to lower the opposing Pokémon’s Attack.

 

Scald

We’re lowering the energy cost of this Charged Attack and adding an effect to this move when it’s used in Trainer battles to tie in with its effect in the core Pokémon RPGs.

  • Trainer Battles: Energy cost decreased and now provides a chance of lowering the opposing Pokémon’s Attack.

 

Feather Dance

We’re increasing the energy cost of this Charged Attack slightly to make it harder to use as often.

  • Trainer Battles: Energy cost increased.

 

Megahorn

We’re giving Megahorn a slight increase in damage to boost Nidoking’s, Heracross’s, and Escavalier’s high-cost Charged Attack options.

  • Trainer Battles: 100 → 110 damage

Attack availability updates

Nidoking

Nidoking will now be able to learn the Charged Attack Sand Tomb.

Poliwrath

Poliwrath will now be able to learn the Charged Attack Scald.

Heracross

Heracross will now be able to learn the Charged Attack Rock Blast.

Manectric

Manectric will now be able to learn the Fast Attack Thunder Fang

Manectric will now be able to learn the Charged Attack Overheat.

Normal Form Castform

Castform will now be able to learn the Charged Attack Normal-type Weather Ball.

Cofagrigus

Cofagrigus will now be able to learn the Fast Attack Shadow Claw.

There’s a lot to look forward to this season, so be sure to turn on push notifications in the game settings and follow @PokemonGoApp on Twitter for all the latest updates on the GO Battle League.

Please be aware of your surroundings and follow guidelines from local health authorities when playing Pokémon GO. Upcoming events are subject to change. Be sure to follow us on social media, opt in to receiving push notifications, and subscribe to our emails to stay updated. For the latest on in-game events and feature updates, be sure to check this help center article.

—The Pokémon GO team

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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.

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