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Whether you're a high level Pokémon Go fanatic or just jumping back in, Saturday September 8th should be a day on every player's mind. Triumphantly returning to raid battles across the world, Moltres, the mascot of Team Valor, brings with it a spectacular bounty of stardust and XP. Here are 6 tips you need to know before you go out raiding.
1. Know when Moltres will spawn.
Unlike other raid bosses, Moltres will not hatch from an egg; instead all gyms without an upcoming EX raid will immediately spawn a Moltres raid boss for a three hour period. If you want to make the most of the event, make sure you look at the chart below to see when Moltres will spawn at a gym near you.
- The Asia-Pacific region: 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. JST (GMT +9)
- Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and India: 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. UTC (GMT +0)
- The Americas and Greenland: 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. PDT (GMT −7)
2. Have a raid group ready.
For players that live in densely populated areas, this wont be as much of an issue, but for Rural players, make sure you have a group of players ready to battle Moltres. Just like the previous returns of Articuno and Zapdos, Moltres will have the stats of a tier 4 raid boss, but the three minute timer of a tier 5 raid boss. Thankfully this means that it is possible for two well prepared trainers to take down Moltres under the right conditions.
3. Have your raid party ready.
Using the game's party feature, you can prepare your team of six battle ready Pokémon without having to make it in the lobby. Like Ho-oh, Moltres is fire/flying type, so rock moves will be four times effective against it. That being said, the best counter for Moltres is smack down/stone edge Tyranitar. If you were lucky enough to get some during the Larvitar community day, That is your best bet. Just remember, while you can use a charge TM to make your Tyranitar learn Stone edge, a fast TM will not be able to teach it smack down. Following behind is Kyogre with Waterfall/Hydro Pump only being a tiny bit weaker in the rain than Tyranitar. Don't have any of those hard to get counters? Don't worry! Other fine substitutes are Golem, Gyarados, Raikou, Zapdos, Omastar, and even the current Tier 5 raid boss, Regirock.
4. Make sure everyone is in.
Even if you don't have premium raid passes stocked up, you will be able to get five raid passes just by spinning gyms while you hunt down Moltres. With that being said, small groups should always make sure everyone got into the raid battle without the game crashing. For a plethora of reasons, a player can get kicked out of the raid while everyone else is throwing rocks at the bird. If everyone quits out of the battle while leaving the lobby, you will be able to re-enter without using a raid pass. This means that everyone can back out to the gym screen and restart the raid together. Just remember to heal up your team before trying again.
5. Keep your party healthy.
If you have the resources, make sure you keep your team revived and at full health for the best chance at taking down Moltres in time. For players with a larger group, you can battle with a team of recently caught Pokémon while the others take it down and then transfer them after they get knocked out. You will lose out on some potential bonus premier balls, so be careful of that.
6. Keep those lucky eggs going.
If you want to maximize the amount of XP and Stardust you get from each raid, make sure you have a Lucky Egg and Starpiece ticking when you finish the battle. This combination will give you 20,000 XP and 4500 Stardust for every victory! Another helpful tip is to know that you can activate both of these items in the battle lobby so you don't have to waste time not benefiting. You can even run from the battle, use them in the lobby while the battle is going on, and then rejoin to get the maximum potential.
Bonus: Don't waste berries.
If you are lucky enough to encounter a shiny Moltres, it will have a 100% capture rate. No need to use your Golden Razz; a Pinap will guarantee six candy instead of three.
While it may sound cliché, don't forget to have fun. As a level 40 player I often see others stressing out for the full three hours trying to maximize absolutely every second they can out of the event. If that's how you like to play, then don't let me stop you, but in the end, you're spending time with other people who like the same game as you, maybe take a minute to stop and smell the Roselias along the way.