The other day, I saw my first practical use of someone using a Mega Pokemon in a raid. During a raid against Giratina, someone used a Mega Houndoom. Sadly, I was using Dragon types at the time, and because there were 15 people in the raid, it didn’t really do much. But the thought was nice, and Mega Houndoom is cool. However, just how worthwhile was that Mega Evolution?
Let’s have a look.
Step 1: obtaining your Mega Evolution
To Mega Evolve your Houndoom for the first time, you need 200 candy. You get a maximum of 90 candy per Mega Raid, but let’s be realistic and say you get about 70-80 in a raid. Actually, I say that, it doesn’t matter. You need to spend 3 raid passes minimum to be able to evolve your Mega Houndoom for the first time. After that, you only need 40 candy.
Still, at best, you need to do 3 raids for one Mega Evolution and then 1 Mega Raid for every Mega Evolution afterwards.
Once you’ve evolved your Mega Pokemon, in this case a Houndoom, you have
4 hours 8 hours (this was changed two days after this article was written) to do as many raids as possible before it turns back to normal. During this time, your Pokemon will get a large stat and CP boost.
Step 2: using your Mega Pokemon
Now you have a Mega Pokemon, you can stick it in a raid. At the time of writing, there’s no way to use Mega Pokemon in gyms or PvP battles in the Go Battle League. You also can’t trade a Mega Pokemon, but frankly, that’s to be expected.
While in said raid, while your Mega Pokemon is alive, it will give a 1.3x damage multiplier to attacks of the same type as the Mega Pokemon, and 1.1x damage for all other attacks. That does seem pretty useful, especially if you are lacking players. Either way, while your Pokemon is alive, it’s being helpful. When it’s dead though, everything goes back to normal.
Step 3: reaping the rewards?
At the end of the raid, you’re rewarded for your Mega Pokemon efforts. By getting a raid done more quickly (or at all if you’re short-manning a raid) and… getting more Pokeballs.
Now, believe me, I need all the Pokeballs I can get. I have horrible luck catching Legendaries. These days, a large chunk of the balls you get to catch a Pokemon are based on how quickly you can do a raid. So using a Mega Pokemon for more damage means you get a raid done quicker. Which then means you get more Pokeballs. This increases your chances of catching the raid Pokemon you just defeated. Unless you’re my brother of course, who somehow manages to catch most Legendaries within 1-3 balls.
Step 4: wonder why you bothered?
But hang on for a moment. In order to GET those extra Pokeballs in a raid, you had to do a raid in the first place. Multiple raids, if it’s your first time Mega Evolving a specific Pokemon. So to get those extra balls, you need to spend extra raid passes.
To be fair, this is somewhat more worthwhile if you are doing multiple raids at on, in a short space of time. Perhaps it’s a Raid Hour, and there’s lots of raids you want to do. A Mega Pokemon here could come in handy. After all, the faster you complete a raid, the quicker you can move on to the next raid.
But are you really cutting down on much time?
Sure, you’ll save time doing the raid itself. If you’re doing a raid with as few players as possible, then a Mega Pokemon could save a LOT of time. But we need to take into account the time you can’t skip. After all, one person has to sit in a raid lobby for the full 120 seconds while everyone else files in. And you also need to consider how much time it takes to actually catch your reward at the end.
Let’s not forget about the raids needed to get a Mega Pokemon. Raids that, weirdly, need nearly as many people as Legendary 5-star raids do. Or, worryingly, sometimes more. It’s actually easier to fight a Moltres than it is to fight most of the current Mega Pokemon!
Basically, Mega Pokemon are a waste of raid passes, except in niche conditions.
And right now, raid passes are the ONLY way to get Mega candy. So, really, you’re spending raid passes to get more Pokeballs in other raids.
Frankly, until we get alternate ways to get a LOT more Mega Candy, most Mega Raids and Evolutions in general just aren’t worth the hassle. Especially since, right now, the Mega Pokemon we have are actually the cheaper ones to evolve…