Niantic Knows Exactly What It’s Doing With Starly Community Day

Deino Community Day was fairly successful by all accounts. I couldn’t play this month, which is gutting as I still don’t have a shiny deiny. But, from talking to my friends and assessing online sentiment, it went pretty well. The shiny rate was better than Go Fest, the new raiding system worked well, and other than too many Zweilous spawning at Lures, there were few complaints.

Some of that goodwill was likely because Deino is a popular Pokemon. It’s a pseudo-Legendary, it’s a Dragon-type, it has formerly been quite rare in Pokemon Go. The same can’t be said for Starly. Sinnoh’s Pidgey equivalent is a really boring choice for July Community Day, but Niantic knows exactly what it’s doing, and has ramped up the bonuses to compensate.

We’ve had Fletchling Community Day before, so we shouldn’t be completely surprised by Starly. It’s uninspired, but Niantic can’t shoot its entire load at once, or else we’d be stuck with a year of boring events. Still, there are a bunch of Pokemon who would be preferable over Starly. The Sinnoh starters for one, as all their shinies are pretty cool and starters are traditionally strong with their Legacy moves from Community Days.

We know the likes of Axew and Goomy will come eventually, but I don’t see either coming this year. Stufful was a great choice, so why not introduce more new Pokemon with a Community Day? Wimpod would have been perfect. Now, I don’t care as I’ve got four Lucky Wimpods and a bunch of XL Candy, but had it not been released already, it would be a good option. I’d even take Galarian Zigzagoon Community Day because Obstagoon is an S-tier shiny.

But we’ve got Starly. Niantic knows this is a filler Community Day; you can tell because of how good the bonuses are. The developer is offering double Candy, and twice the chance for Starly XL Candy, as well as 3x XP for catching Pokemon. It’s the latter bonus that’s really good (unless you particularly want to max out a Level 50 Staraptor for some reason), and that can be boosted to a 4x XP if enough trainers catch Pokemon at a Lure module. This is a day for the grinders.

If you use the quick catch method, and I don’t see any reason why you shouldn’t, you’ll be able to quickly rack up XP during July Community Day. I’m still a few million away from Level 44, and I hope I’ll be able to close that gap by catching a shitload of Starly. I don’t care about the Pokemon – I doubt anyone does, let’s be honest – but Niantic has cleverly piqued my interest in this event with some generous bonuses.

It also shows that Niantic is taking some feedback on board. The boosted Zwielous spawns at Deino Community Day were derided by players – mostly because Zweilous can’t be shiny, as with most evolved forms – and that bonus is gone. Perhaps this was already planned (we’re getting Candy boosts already, which is the only thing catching evolved forms is really good for), but it’s an improvement.

These bonuses still don’t help rural players enjoy the game more, and Starly is still an unbelievably boring choice for a Community Day, but at least there’s something to play for in July. I’m expecting something more exciting in August, though. Larvesta anyone?

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