‘Pokemon Go’: Why Go Battle League Season 4 will have you playing more

Go Battle League is entering its fourth season, and Niantic is still fine tuning the best new feature to “Pokemon Go” this year. Season 4 will run from 1 p.m. Sept. 14 to 12:59 p.m. Nov. 9.

One of the biggest changes is the ranking system. Niantic rethought how it advances players and moved away from the rating system for everything up to rank 9. To move up a level, players must complete a certain number of battles to reach rank 2. From rank 3 to 9, players move up by winning a certain number of battles.

To reach rank 10, players will need to hit a 3,000 rating. This part of Go Battle League has always had issues. Losses are brutal for the climb and players often try to figure out the matchmaking ratings, which has featured properties of the Elo ranking system, according to Go Hub. It will be interesting to see if Niantic has adjusted the system again given the complaints about how fewer people made it to rank 10 in season 3.

Overall, I appreciate the changes and it looks like it will encourage players to push themselves to get to at least Rank 9. The rewards for season 4 are the same as season 3 save for an avatar item inspired by Blue from the main “Pokemon” role-playing games. That’s available at rank 10. Players who finish at rank 7 or higher at the end of the season will receive an Elite Fast TM.

The other change to Season 4 is the introduction of two events. The first is the Halloween Cup. From 1 p.m. Oct. 26 to 1 p.m. Nov. 3, players can participate in the format that only allows Poison-, Ghost-, Bug-, Dark- and Fairy-type Pokemon. It has a 1,500 CP limit. The rewards for the Halloween Cup are encounters with costumed Bulbasaur, Charmander and Squirtle.

The second is the Flying Cup that will go from 6 to 11:59 p.m. Sept. 24. The format only allows flying-type Pokemon and it’s limited to 1,500 CP. What’s notable about the Flying Cup is that it’s available for one night and it has a bevy of rewards. They include double the stardust for battling. Players can also battle 20 sets, which is a lot. The most important bonus for the event is that those who evolve Pidgeotto during the event will get a Pidgeot that knows Gust.

With the new season, Niantic likes to tweak moves and add new ones. That’s no different for Season 4. Lunge, a Bug-type charged attack, will be available to Masquerain and Galvantula. It will lower an opposing Pokemon’s attack, which can make this an attractive PvP move. From the sound of it, the move could either be like icy wind or bubble beam.

In addition, Bug Buzz, Flame Charge and Signal Beam are also updated with stat boosts. Bug Buzz, a Bug-type charged attack, now has a chance at lower an opponent’s defense. Flame Charge, a Fire-type Charged Attack, deals less damage but raises the user’s Attack. Perhaps, it will work similar to Power-up Punch. Lastly, Signal Beam, a Bug-type Charged Attack, has a chance to lower an opponent’s attack and defense. It’s also available for Vespiquen, which can make that Pokemon more viable in Great League.

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Author: Gieson Cacho