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Niantic Teases Releasing Regional Pokemon for Ultra Unlock

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Article by Brian Tien

Pokemon Go Fest 2021 has come and gone, leaving us waiting for and wondering about what 2022 will bring. What will the next Mythical Pokemon be? What will the gimmick for Day 2 will be? Where the heck is Kecleon? This is all on the very distant horizon, but for now we can look to the near future, as we've managed to score the full three levels of the Ultra Unlock for 2021. While the first stage of the Ultra Unlock is well on its way (yet still not revealed), we've got a hint of what the second part of the Ultra Unlock will entail; and it involves regional Pokemon.

It looks like we might just be seeing Heracross leave its home in Central and South America, while Kangaskhan takes another globe-trot from Australia.

The Regionals

As of right now, we have confirmation of two regionals going global for this event (maybe... more on that later) 

...and Gastly?

So what exactly does this mean? Let's take a look.

Heracross

This Bug/Fighting Type Pokemon from Generation 2/Johto has been around for quite some time, but has only ever been outside of its home turf for localized events, making it annoyingly rare for the vast majority of the player base. As it sits, it's not particularly useful. It has some play in the Ultra League, and is "acceptable" in raids, but it's not a true must-have. But that's not to say that it's not worth gong all-in for; this could be our first real chance to farm for a good bug in preparation for Mega Heracross!

While Mega Heracross can't currently enter the Go Battle League, it's poised to sit in a very nice place in PvE. It's set to become the new king Bug (for whatever that may be worth), and may also become our new strongest Fighting Type in the game (assuming Mega Blaziken and especially Mega Lucario don't beat it to the punch)

Kangaskhan

Kangaskhan is... definitely less exciting than Heracross. It has potential in PvP if given a moveset update, and.. that's about it. As a Normal Type with middling stats, it was never going to shine in raids. But what about its Mega Evolution?

Mega Kangaskhan is... well, honestly not much can be said for it. We can't use Mega Evolutions in PvP yet, so it will have literally no presence on that front, and while it was a HUGE threat in the Main Series, in Pokemon Go it is among the most useless Mega Evolutions for PvE. Its entire claim to fame was the fact that it would move twice per turn thanks to its "Parental Bonding" ability in the main series, but we have no analog for that here, so poor Mega Kangaskhan will likely be one of those Mega Evolutions that will have Mega Energy available from research as basically no one will want to raid for it beyond a dex entry.

Gastly

....um... it exists? I suppose? It may have increased spawns, and maybe a window of time for Haunter evolved into Gengar to know Shadow Punch? We could also see a new way to get Lick on Gengar, which we haven't seen in a very long time.

The Caviats

This is a lot of speculation from just one image of three blacked-out Pokemon silhouettes. But note that it really is just speculation as of now. We know what these shadowed Pokemon are at a glance, but just what role they will play in the event remains to be seen. Here are a few possibilities that could change up the outcome of this evet:

1: Heracross is just a Shiny releases, not a global release

 Under Heracross we do see a Shiny mark, and we've had events in the past that released shiny Regional Pokemon exclusively in their regions. So it's a definite possibility that we'll see Kangaskhan globally, and Heracross shiny and still fully region-locked. However, this is a part of Go Fest, and the entire point of the Space unlock is that Pokemon from various places are appearing all over the place. For these reasons, this caviat isn't extremely likely.

2: We're going directly to their Mega Evolution releases

Since both of the currently confirmed Regional Pokemon related to this event have Mega Evolutions, we may see them simultaneously released as Mega Raids... and assuming the previous point doesn't hold true here, this is something of a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it will be far harder to stock up on candy for Heracross in particular given this method, and any obtained will cost premium items and/or money that could otherwise be spent on the current Tier 5 boss of the day. But on the other hand, this would open up a minimum 10/10/10 IV floor for any caught, and Heracross will instantly have the potential to revolutionize the Bug and Fighting Metas with its Mega Evolution. Ideally, maybe we'll have wild spawns and Mega Raids?

3: These may not be the only regional Pokemon released

Not so much a true caviat as a hopeful note. Niantic notoriously doesn't give us complete spawn lists for most events, so Heracross and Kangaskhan may not be the only regionals involved. This may just be wishful thinking, but perhaps Hoopa will see to it that more region-locked Pokemon start roaming around the globe...?

Conclusion

If the stars align and the entire event turns out to be the best of all of our highlighted scenarios, then this could be a very interesting time for many players. If not, then it could be a riotous slap across the face of many players hoping for regional Pokemon availability. While we haven't covered every possibility for this event (as the possibilities are virtually endless), this should cover the major directions that are most likely here. Regardless of how this all turns out, I feel like we can all agree when it comes to one major part of this event:

OMG guys! We've got GASTLY for this event!!!

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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.

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