Changes made to Pokemon Go Trainer Battles but what do they mean?

by Paul Cot
Pokemon Company


Niantic have made some big changes in GO Battle League updating numerous attacks and adding more moves that some Pokemon can learn.

The changes come "in celebration of Pokémon’s Grass-type month" with the majority of the changes relating to grass-type species. There have been changes made to a variety of different type moves and Pokemon, however.

GO Battle League is nearly half way through Season 1 but this hasn't stopped Niantic trying to balance the PvP mode as much as possible. There will always be Pokemon at the top of the meta but in ideal world this will be split as much as possible to keep the mode fresh.

Pokemon Go Grass-type Month
The bulk of the changes focus on grass-type moves and Pokemon...


Move changes

The first set of changes have altered how various popular moves work. They are as follows:

  • Bullet Seed - This Grass-type Fast Attack now generates energy more quickly.
  • Energy Ball - This Grass-type Charged Attack now reaches full charge more quickly and has a chance of lowering the opponent’s Defense by one stage.
  • Leaf Tornado - This Grass-type Charged Attack now has a chance of decreasing your opponent’s Attack by two stages.
  • Ancient Power - The damage that this Rock-type Charged Attack deals has been decreased in Trainer Battles.
  • Ominous Wind - The damage that this Ghost-type Charged Attack deals has been decreased in Trainer Battles. It also reaches full charge less quickly.
  • Silver Wind - The damage that this Bug-type Charged Attack deals has been decreased in Trainer Battles.

With the Ultra League portion of GBL Season 1 currently underway, trainers will be looking at how this could affect their teams. The changes to the grass-type moves could boost the viability of Alolan Exeggutor, Sceptile, Mantine, Leafeon and Shiftry. Will they be able to compete with the best Ultra League Pokemon, though?

Giratina Altered Forme (above) can learn Ancient Power while its Origin Forme can learn Ominous Wind...


Meanwhile Ancient Power, Ominous Wind and Silver Wind has all received nerfs. Ancient Power and Ominous Wind are respective moves of Giratina Altered and Giratina Origin, weakening arguably the most powerful Ultra League species.

As a result bug, fire, flying and ice-types should perform slightly better against Altered Forme Giratina and ghost/psychic-types against the Origin Forme. The fast charging Dragon Claw will likely become even more popular now!

Other notable Pokemon affected by the Ancient Power reduction is Articuno, Cranidos, Golem, Rayquaza, Togekiss and Zapdos. Outside of Giratina-O there aren't really any notable Pokemon that use Ominous Wind and none that use Silver Wind.


Species that can learn new attacks

Six Pokemon have been given the ability to learn a new attack. They are as follows:

  • Bellossom: Bullet Seed
  • Cradily: Bullet Seed
  • Jumpluff: Aerial Ace
  • Ludicolo: Energy Ball
  • Sunshine Form Cherrim: Fire-type Weather Ball
  • Tangrowth: Rock Slide

These new additions don't really change too much but Jumpluff, Ludicolo and Sunshine Form Cherrim have had their Great League credentials improved.

That's all you need to know about the April 2020 update to GO Battle League. It looks like updates could be semi-regular thing going forward, though, so keep on top of the changes, trainers!