Pokemon Go‘s bumper Christmas event is expected to be revealed by Niantic later this week.
Last year’s Xmas event had a December 25 release date, and launched with in-store discounts, free incubators, festive Pikachus and increased hatch rates for Gen 2 Pokemon like Togepi and Pichu.
Santa hat Pikachus are almost certain to re-appear in 2017, alongside a brand new Gen 2 Pokemon that has yet to debut.
Dataminers recently found evidence that Delibird is coming to the game as part of the Christmas event update. Fans discovered Delibird’s unusual ‘Present’ move in the source code, which means its likely to be released at Christmas.
There’s also a very good chance Niantic will put the spotlight on a specific Pokemon type, and perhaps even release additional Gen 3 Pokemon over the course of the event.
Based on past seasonal events, increased spawn rates for Ice type Pokemon could be on the cards.
You can take a look at some of the Gen 1, Gen 2 and Gen 3 Ice type Pokemon in the gallery below…
Niantic hinted at increased Ice type Pokemon during a recent interview with Express Online.
Niantic developer Matt Slemon said that while the company wouldn’t falsely manipulate weather effects, some Pokemon may appear more frequently as part of the next event.
“The most important things for us when it comes to the Weather feature is that we enforce it is an AR feature,” he said.
“This isn’t something we want to make up, so we don’t want to virtualise snow for instance, in Los Angeles. We want the weather (in Pokemon Go) to reflect what the weather’s like outside.
“That being said, if there are Pokemon that might spawn more often in the snow, you might still see them through events showing up because of the event, rather than because it’s snowing outside.”
Niantic is also planning to hold a number of Legendary Ex Raids on Christmas Day.
Invitations have been sent out to Trainers, although it’s unclear who players will be battling.
Groudon has also made its debut in Pokemon Go Raid battles.
“Groudon, the Ground-type Legendary Pokemon originally discovered in the Hoenn region, is now appearing in Raid Battles around the world!” reads a Niantic blog post. “Keep an eye out for Groudon at Gyms near you, and you may be one of the first to catch this Legendary Pokemon.”
The only downside is that Groudon will only be available to battle until 9pm UK time on January 15.