Special Research in Pokemon Go is, as the name suggests, special research that has you go through various tasks, working your way towards a legendary Pokemon. At the time of writing, there are two special research quests, the Mew Quest “A Mythical Discovery” and the Celebi Quest “A Ripple in Time”. While I still need about 60 more Magikarp candies for the Mew quest, I’m so close to catching that damn Celebi.
It’s been a real slog.
Funnily enough, step one was simple. I had to power up Pokemon five times by feeding them candy, I had to battle in a gym twice and I had to battle in a raid. Three things that most players tend to do on a pretty regular basis. I finished step one nice and quick, just for step two to hit me in the face like a brick.
On the surface, step two doesn’t sound hard. Make 3 new friends, catch a Pokemon three days in a row and evolve an evolved grass type Pokemon. Making 3 new friends seemed tricky at first since I only had 3 friends at the time, but the internet solved that one. I still send my 3 new friends gifts and they send me gifts. Catching 3 Pokemon three days in a row was easy as well since I’d saved up normal research that gave me Pokemon anyway. Even if I didn’t go out at all, worst case scenario I could use Incense.
Evolving an evolved grass type is hard when you’re fairly new. That requires at least 125 candy for one specific grass type Pokemon, but you’re kinda limited to what Pokemon. You’ve got the three starters, Bulbasaur, Chikorita and Treecko, but they’re all pretty uncommon and often hard to catch. Your other main options are Bellsprout, Oddish or Hopip, the most common at the time being Hopip, due to the Ripple in Time announcement event. Typically I didn’t collect enough Hopips during the event, which brought out tons of Sunkerns and other grassy third-gen Pokemon. I was about 25 candies short for ages, and ended up using two rare candies after a week of frustration and not seeing any Hopips after the event.
Luckily, I did save enough Sunkerns for step three of the quest. Enough to actually level up 2 Sunkerns into Sunfloras. I only evolved one though, a lucky one I got from a trade. Step 3 required one to evolve a Gloom or a Sunkern using a Sun Stone, to hatch 9 eggs and to reach level 25. The nine eggs were the most awkward because I only had a handful of 2km and 5km eggs and ended up hatching a bunch of 7km eggs, but I managed it. Level 25 was easy since I got a bunch of Ultra Friends at the same time.
Steps four and five were simple. Both of them involved keeping an Eevee as your walking buddy and evolving it after walking 20km. Step four required me to send 20 gifts and step five required me to trade a single Pokemon, so those were both easy. Thankfully, I’d saved candies from the Eevee Community Day, and I had JUST enough. 51 total candies. The Espeon and Umbreon I evolved both had mediocre CP but that’s okay.
Step six though, that one floored me. using Pinap berries 25 times was simple enough, especially since step 5 rewarded me with 15 berries already. Spinning Pokestops 7 days in a row actually wasn’t too bad either. But I got completely stuck trying to evolve Pokemon with items.
My first Pokemon was a second Sunkern. Which took me a week because I needed a second Sunstone. I had candy for that. My second Pokemon… well I was torn between Onix, Scyther, Slowpoke, Porygon, Gloom and Poliwhirl. The latter two needed 100 candies compared to the 50 I needed with the others, but Poliwag turned out to be the most common Pokemon during the Kanto event, so that’s what I went with. It took too long. I could have gone with another Pokemon, but Poliwags were the only thing I could find. I would have LOVED to evolve an Onix or Scyther, but nope, didn’t see any during the Kanto event that was supposed to spawn Kanto Pokemon like Onix and Scyther.
I managed it in the end. After weeks.
Onto step seven.
Step seven seemed simple enough. Catch 40 grass or psychic types, make an excellent curve throw and earn a gold Johto medal. The Chikorita Community Day dealt with the first one nice and fast. The excellent curve throw happened on the same day, which surprised me because I thought I’d struggle with that – especially since it took my brother a week to get one. The gold Johto badge?
So close yet so far. I was at 61 out of 70 Pokemon required at the time. I’ve clawed my way to the magic number 70, partially in thanks to the event, partially in thanks to Suicine and normal research and partially in thanks to two special trades.
I finally did it.
I’m on step 8 out of 8.
It’s time to catch a Celebi.
In fact, I’m so close that I’ve tripped up at the last damn hurdle. Because as I write this, Pokemon Go has decided that I no longer have GPS and internet connection, which means I can’t evolve the very last Pokemon I need to get my Johto gold metal and I certainly can’t catch Celebi.
I’ve spent half an hour trying to get Pokemon Go to work. I don’t know what actually managed to get it working, it just decided, after multiple restarts and reinstalling the app and all sorts, that I have GPS and an internet connection again.
So I’m sitting here at this screen, because the game can’t detect the orientation of my phone, watching Celebi appear and disappear.
It took me 20 minutes to actually catch her.
I caught her eventually, after waiting for her to get close. I must have used about 50 Pokeballs in doing so. Luckily it doesn’t use my actual Pokeballs, but some imaginary ones. I tried to catch her in AR but the game simply wouldn’t recognise my orientation for some reason.
I caught Celebi though. A mythical Pokemon. A supposedly powerful, godly Pokemon.
Except it turns out, Celebi isn’t even that good a Pokemon in-game. You can’t stick her in a gym or anything and she’s too weak and has too many weaknesses to actually be any good at fighting anything. Combined with wholly random moves, it’s not worth wasting candy and making her into a buddy to make her stronger.
It doesn’t really feel worth it. Celebi doesn’t even look that interesting or anything.
Was this all worthwhile in the end? I don’t know.
I suppose at least it’s over now.