In Pokemon Go, you get one free Raid Pass a day. That free Raid Pass can be used on whatever raid you want except for EX Raids, which require a special black EX Raid Pass. Once you use the free, orange Raid Pass, most of the time you have to use a Premium Raid Pass to do raids.
That would be fine if you regularly buy Premium Passes or are flush with them after finishing the Special Research tasks. After all, it only takes two days of getting a full 50 coins to be able to buy a Raid Pass, right? They’re only 100 coins and they’re pretty cheap! Heck, May’s Ultra Box contained 20 Premium Raid Passes and only cost about €16, right?
Yeah, no, it starts to add up after a while. I managed to get a couple of months out of the free passes from Special Research but that quickly drained up. Most of the coins I’ve spent on Pokemon Go have been on Raid Passes, even though I only get 100 coins every 3-5 days (mostly due to bad luck and which ever blue bastard goes around and takes every gym ‘for fun’). So most of the time, I only do one raid a day. If there are any good raids.
With one raid a day, it’s pretty obvious which one you should go for: the raid with the biggest rewards. In my case, as part of a pretty active raid group, that raid is almost ALWAYS a level 5 raid, no matter the boss. The only time I don’t do that is if there is a Shinx raid, because I want a gold electric cat/dog thing like everyone else seems to have. But most of the time, it’s the current legendary raid that we do.
Even if the boss is crap.
I mean, last month, we had the Spirits of the Lake (which will always be regional and that’s really fucked up) but we also had things like Dragonite and Metagross in the level 4 raid pool. The thing is, everyone did Mesprit instead because even if Mesprit is mediocre, there’s no reason to do Dragonite and Metagross raids.
Firstly, you need almost the same number of people. Cresselia, the current legendary raid boss, needs a few more because she’s tanky as heck but Mesprit only needed 3-4 people. You need 2-3 people to take on a Metagross and 2 people for a Tyranitar or Dragonite. So you might as well get one more person to catch a Legendary Pokemon.
There’s also the usefulness of these Pokemon. A Tyranitar is pretty much always useful because of how many damn psychic type Pokemon there are but Dragonite and Metagross are only strong because they had Community Days and got moves that make them strong. You can’t get Meteor Mash on a Metagross now so your newly caught Metagross is guaranteed to not be as good as a Community Day Metagross. The only real bonus is being able to get 20 candies if you use a Pinap to catch these Pokemon.
On top of that, you also have 0 chance to get shinies in any raid with an evolved Pokemon because Niantic said so. Meanwhile Cresselia, the current raid boss, has a really nice shiny you can get for a short amount of time. Most non-legendary raids cycle though and will normally come back after a month or so but you don’t know when a Legendary will be back or whether it will have a shiny or not.
But then you’ve got the end of raid rewards too. Level 5 raids just give all-round better stuff! They give more rare candies, more golden razzberries, more potions and revives and have a higher chance of giving Charge and Fast TMs. They also give more experience and stardust! So for a small amount of effort, you get a bigger rewards.
So basically every other raid apart from level 5 raids are worthless unless you live somewhere where you can’t do level 5 raids. And those people are missing out on far better rewards from no fault of their own. So you either have like 90% of all raids ignored or you’re permanently incapable of getting the good rewards.
The thing is, this could easily be fixed in two ways.
Firstly non-legendary raids need better rewards. Especially level 3 and 4 raids which need some coordination. You can solo some of these raids but that needs genuine effort to do, and frankly if you manage to solo level 4 raids, you deserve even more rewards. Allowing shiny evolved Pokemon only in raids would also be a great reason to want to do level 3-4 raids.
Secondly, why not have a second free Legendary-only Raid Pass? You’d still only get one free Legendary Raid Pass once a day (or maybe once every 3 days or once a week?) but this means that players can actually do a normal raid without feeling like they’re wasting their time.
Or we could just continue as we are, ignoring the majority of the raid pool because none of it is particularly rewarding…