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Pokémon Go may get easier for rural players

Niantic is looking to provide more items and tailor raid levels to accommodate smaller communities

Photo: James Bareham/Polygon
Julia Lee (she/her) is a guides producer, writing guides for games like The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom and Genshin Impact. She helped launch the Rift Herald in 2016.

Pokémon Go has received various changes designed to make the game more balanced for players in different areas, according to an announcement from Niantic.

Notably, the company said it has been testing “providing more items in areas with fewer PokéStops, introducing different shop bundles, and tailoring raid levels to fit the communities where the raids appear.” This is a big change for rural players; playing Pokémon Go in smaller towns that are less populated with PokéStops means that you get less items, and less of a chance to complete difficult raids.

It’s a little unclear what tests were specifically run and if they were event-tested. It’s also unknown if Niantic is saying that the company will make tier-five raids easier in rural areas, or if only lower tier raids will spawn in those areas, since they’re easier to complete. While players have talked a bit about getting more items from PokéStops, it’s unclear how raids have changed as part of Niantic’s efforst.

None of these changes are widespread or going to stay for sure, but if they do come to rural players, it’ll be a massive help to Pokémon Go fans in small towns.

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