Raid Review: December 1, 2024

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Welcome to Raid Review, where we take a look at the current raid rotation in Pokemon Go in order to see how valuable the current candidates, so that we can see what's worth your precious raid passes and what should generally be ignored! This is an ongoing series for Gamepress where we break down the proceedings into three-to-four different sections and work out the top choices for each, with consideration given to PvP and PvE alike. 

Five-Star and Mega Raids

Pheromosa, Buzzwole, and Xurkitree

We've got an Ultra Beast trio returning, with each locked to a different region:

  • Buzzwole can be encountered in the Americas
  • Xurkitree can be encountered in Asia-Pacific
  • Pheromosa can be encountered in Europe

Among the three, the Americas got the short end of the stick. Buzzwole has utility in PvP and is okay in raids... if you are new to the game... but its not exactly the most important Five Star Raid Boss that we've seen in recent months. And it's also not SUPER easy to take down, so it will take at least 2 players in most reasonable scenarios despite being soloable under specific conditions. In general, it's not super-worth it beyond the initial dex-fill.

The real winners here are Asia-Pacific. Xurkitree is an outstanding raider, and should be a priority for any player looking to ger more Electric Type power. Even if you already have one raised, it never hurts to get the resources to raise one or two more, as it's got the power needed to justify the investment.

Finally, while Pheromosa has what is almost definitely the least utility among this trio in most cases, it has the huge advantage of being a resource farm. This is an easy solo with the proper counters, so going out and utilizing daily passes on it is a great way to score a ton of useful items, as well as plenty of candy should you ever want to raise a Pheromosa yourself for whatever reason.

At the end of the day, if you're going to drop Remote Raid passes, then the clear winner is Xurkitree. Farming more of this Pokemon is likely to always be helpful, especially if we ever get a Shadow Xurkitree someday. If you live in Asia-Pacific, then farm Pharomosa for easy resources every day. If you're outside of its range, then it's probably best to just use a Remote Raid pass for the dex fill and then leave it alone. Finally, farming some Buzzwole is great if you want to use it in PvP, but outside of that it's mostly a dex filler as well. 

Shadow Moltres

Shadow Moltres is no longer the monarch of the Fire or Flying metas, but it's still very much near the top of each. Appearing during the weekends, this is definitely a high-priority raid that is very much worth hitting up given the chance.

Mega Ampharos

Mega Ampharos is the lesser of the two Electric Type Mega Evolutions, but it's still fine. While its DPS is never going to reach that of Mega Manectric, it's still a great Electric Type Mega Evolution in its own right, and a great sub-option to utilize while waiting for a lower Mega Energy cost on Manectric. It's also not a terribly difficult solo, so it's a decent resource farm if you happen to want to seek it out.

Three-Star Raids

The obvious winner here is Gengar, as it's the precursor to the monster that is Mega Gengar. It's also a pretty solo with the right counters, so it's a great pick for resource farming if nothing else. Of course, every raid-caught Gengar within this time-frame will also have a party hat, and not everyone will want to sport a smiling ghost wearing a constant reminder of celebration on their team, so consider that before going all-in hunting down a perfect Gengar at the moment.

Everyone's favorite poison ghost aside, the remainder of the Three-Star options are fairly lackluster. Nidoking and Wobbuffet have some utility in PvP, while Raticate is pretty easy to skip. If you're a collector then pick one of each up or hunt for a shiny if you're so inclined, or just forget that they exist unless you have a free raid pass that's set to go to waste.

One-Star Raids

Like the Three Star options above, the One Star raids all have holiday hats. Among them, the three starters from Kanto are the real winners here. All three are solid attackers, have at least some PvP utility, and can all Mega Evolve for added utility. While they all show up pretty frequently in events, this is a great time to amass some candy and try for a high-IV individual.... or a party hat individual if that's what you want to sport on your team.

After the starters, Hoothoot is the next best option. Noctowl is still good in PvP, so players looking to shore up their teams may want to consider farming it now... though a bit of trading will be necessary to obtain PvP-ready IVs.

Finally, Wurmple is a pretty easy skip. Dustox has a bit of PvP utility, but that's about it.

Raid Rotation Priorities

For those in Asia-Pacific or willing to drop Remote Raid passes, Xurkitree is definitely the winner here. It's an outstanding Pokemon worth farming while possible.

For those in the Americas, pick up a Buzzwole or two for the resources/dex fills, and maybe try for a high-IV option if you're convinced that it's going to be stronger someday. That aside, maybe farm the lower-tiered raids instead.

Anyone in Europe should probably farm Pheromosa for resources if possible, as it's the easiest way to get some really great raid rewards. And as a pretty easy solo, it's pretty easy to dart from gym to gym, knocking it out in short order without needing to bring other players along for the ride

Those aside, it's probably best to save raid passes for Shadow Moltres when it comes calling during this period, as it's an outstandingly strong Pokemon as well. That said, we don't know exactly how long this exact raid rotation will last, and the New Years Event ends on the 3rd, so we may not get a chance to actually see Shadow Moltres during this exact window.

Once that's all said and done, drop a Remote Raid pass to get whatever Ultra Beast(s) you don't already have, and feel accomplished in your achievement. 

Outside of the big-names above, we do have some other options. Mega Ampharos is a soloable Mega Raid that's available everywhere, the Kanto Starters are all potentially useful to varying degrees, and everything else is largely just dex fill/collection/pick it up if it fills a PvP niche that you still aren't done with.

Regardless, Happy New Year everyone, and best of luck in 2024! 

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About the Author(s)

Gamepress Pokemon Go site lead with a focus on theorycrafting and gameplay optimization and 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.