Pokemon GO: Battle League Season 1 - Everything You Need to Know

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The preseason for the GO Battle League is coming to an end, and Niantic has just announced that Season 1 will debut this month on Friday, March 13th, and it'll last to the beginning of May. Here's everything you need to know!

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What is Pokemon GO Battle League?

Pokemon GO Battle League is a global competition where trainers can battle each other to earn in-game rewards. The preseason for the competition went live in January, but the season 1 debut will start on March 13th and last through the beginning of May.

Preseason rewards

To celebrate the end of the preseason, from March 5th at 8PM to March 13th at 7PM, all three leagues will be available to play in the GO Battle League!

If you were one of the many players that took part during the preseason and were one of the lucky trainers to achieve rank 4 or higher, you'll receive a Premium Battle Pass as part of the end-of-preseason rewards.


Two Special Season 1 themed events

Due to the Battle Leagues official arrival, Niantic will be rolling out two Battle League themed events to help you catch strong Pokemon to use in battle and gain more Stardust to power up your Pokemon


The 'Prepare for GO Battle League' event

This event will be from March 10th at 8AM to March 12th at 10PM.

Strong Pokemon will begin appearing in raids, including Skarmory, Swampert, Shieldon, and more!

Registeel and Cresselia will be appearing in five-star raids.

You’ll also earn twice the usual Stardust from Raid Battles and Trainer Battles during this event.

Please note that this bonus will not apply to GO Battle League Trainer Battles.

The 'GO Battle League Season 1 Launch Celebration' event


This event will be from March 13th at 8AM to March 16th at 10PM.

More Pokemon that are thought to be powerful in the GO Battle League will be available in raids, including Altered Forme Giratina in five-star raids.

Fighting-type Pokémon will also be appearing more frequently in the wild!

Also if you’re lucky, you might find a Shiny Timburr! Your best bet would be battling and catching it in one-star raids!

GO Battle League Season 1 Launch changes

GO Battle League’s rewards

 Depending on your rank, you’ll receive increased Stardust rewards and a different number of Charged and Fast TMs.


Winning matters much earlier in the ranks now

Ranks 2 and 3 now require you to win a certain number of battles to advance to the next rank. Previously, wins mattered only beginning at rank 4.

Pokemon encounters changed

The Pokemon you can encounter as GO Battle League rewards will update for Season 1

  • Metagross is guaranteed as the first encounter reward for Season 1.
  • Rank 4 -  encounter Beldum.
  • Rank 7 - encounter Rufflet. (Making its Pokémon GO debut ahead of appearing in the Safari Zone).
  • Rank 10 - encounter Pikachu Libre.

Machop, Snorlax, and Meditite will no longer appear as GO Battle League encounters, but you’ll encounter Scraggy more often.

These reward encounters are likely to change next season, so get them while you can.


Steven avatar pose reward

If players reach rank 10 they will earn avatar items and an avatar pose inspired by Steven.

Steven is the Pokemon League Champion in the Hoenn region. The pose is a reward exclusive to Season 1.

Elite Charged and Elite Fast TMs

At the end of Season 1, players will receive an Elite Charged TM if they have reached Rank 7 or higher.

By using an Elite Charged TM or Elite Fast TM, you’ll be able to select the attack that your Pokemon learns.

GO Battle League Season 1 timeline

Season 1 will rotate through leagues, just like the preseason did, and Season 2 will most likely begin in early May.

  • The Great League: March 13th, 7PM - March 27th, 7PM
  • The Ultra League:  March 27th, 7PM - April 10th, 7PM
  • The Master League: April 10th, 7PM - April 24th, 7PM
  • All three leagues will be available: April 24 - May 1st, 7PM
  • Season 2:  May 1st, 7PM