Pokemon Go Field Research quests: May missions and rewards list

By Alex Donaldson, Friday, 17 May 2019 18:00 GMT

If you want to be the very best, you’ll need to stay on top of the Pokemon Go Research Quests – constantly changing missions and activities that players can pick up and complete for bonuses and rewards. Here’s all the current missions.

Pokemon Go’s research quests are split into two categories: Field Research tasks and Research Breakthroughs.

Field Research tasks (or quests if you prefer) are picked up from Pokestops and are essentially random, though quests and rewards change from month to month. Completing these can lead to Research Breakthroughs which provide further unique rewards that also rotate over time. Special Research is less random – it’s a series of missions set for you by Professor Willow which push towards giving you access to potential catch especially rare, mythical Pokemon. Let’s go over how each works in detail…

How Pokemon Go Research: How Field Research Tasks work and how to get their rewards

Field Research missions are essentially missions that you collect when you spin PokeStops. Each PokeStop gets one specific field research mission assigned to it each day, and though you can complete a quest more than once per day you’ll only ever pick up the same mission from any given PokeStop.

You can complete as many field research quests as you, and the rewards for any given quest will vary a little depending on the quest you get. Generally speaking, you’ll want to aim to complete at least one quest per day in order to work towards your research breakthrough, however – but more on that in a moment.

Quests range across all aspects of Pokemon Go and in a sense exist to get players to experience all aspects of the game. Field research quests might ask you to battle in a raid, battle in a gym, hatch Pokemon eggs, catch certain Pokemon types or even spin Pokestops – and these are just a few examples. Sometimes a task will reward you with the items, but other times you’ll be rewarded with a rare Pokemon encounter – field research tasks are the only way to encounter and catch Spinda, for instance – the encounter with a Spinda you need to catch one only comes as the result of a Pokeball-throwing related field research mission. As an aside, these encounters are really useful since Pokemon encountered in this way can’t flee.

The quests and rewards on offer rotate in a monthly manner for the most part, meaning at the end of one month Niantic will retire quests and rewards and replace them with new ones. Sometimes they’ll keep a quest but replace its reward – it really varies from month to month, and often there’s a theme to a month – like how August 2018 featured Raikou as a potential reward and a range of other electric Pokemon. May 2019 is once again a double-month event dedicated to legendary Pokemon – giving you a chance to catch the likes of Lugia, Ho-Oh, Latias and Latios. Some of these have appeared as field research rewards before – but some haven’t, and the chance of which you get is random.

Research Breakthroughs in Pokemon Go: earning the big reward for May: Latias, Latios, Lugia and Ho-Oh

As you can see in the screenshot above – and in game – the field research screen has a series of stamps adding up to seven stamps. You can only earn one stamp per day even if you complete multiple missions – so basically, this series of stamps is designed to last a week. When you reach the seventh day you’ll unlock a Research Breakthrough, represented on the screen by the big wrapped-up parcel from Professor Willow.

Exactly what will be inside these packages varies from month to month alongside the other research bonuses and rewards including the potential for a Sinnoh Stone evolution item to drop. The biggest thing, however, is that every month this features a Pokemon encounter. These are usually with high-end, rare Pokemon – often even legendary Pokemon – some of the best Pokemon in Pokemon Go. That means you’ll have an unlimited amount of tries to catch them since Pokemon encountered in this way can’t run away. So long as you have patience and Pokeballs, you can keep trying until they’re caught. This is a great place to practice how to make excellent throws and curveball throws in Pokemon Go, too.

Pokemon caught this way will also have naturally high stats – the same sort of stats that you might find on Pokemon encountered as part of raid battles. All in all, this is a great way to catch rare Pokemon. Here’s how past months have gone:

For May 2019, the field research rewards will be a matter of random chance to a degree: once you complete a week’s worth of field missions you’ll have a chance at encountering one of four legendary Pokemon: gen 2 legendary birds Ho-Oh and Lugia, plus two other legendary Pokemon previously confined to Pokemon Go’s raids: Latias and Latios.

May Field Research List: rewards and missions for current field research tasks

As we previously explained, everything around the field research mission system is on rotation – every month brings around a different set of events with different goals, and we’re going to keep this page current with whatever the current mission set is. For May field research breakthrough you’ll be rewarded an opportunity to catch one of a few legendary Pokemon from the second Pokemon generation – legendary birds Ho-Oh and Lugia plus Latias and Latios. Which appears is random, so cross your fingers for your favourite or for the one you’re missing.

All you have to do to get this is rack up seven days worth of stamps by completing one field research mission a day – in turn giving you four chances to do this if you’re on the ball in January. The Pokemon on offer run the gamut – flying, fire, ice, electric, water and even steel type – and given that they’re all powerful this also gives you a great chance to boost your team in terms of Pokemon type strengths and weaknesses.

Here’s the quests that you’ll find in your Field Research list during May 2019 – but remember, these quests are rewarded at random from PokeStops, so which you see is entirely down to chance. As it’s only the start of May, we’re still figuring out the current quests and rewards, adding and removing February’s quests as necessary. This page should be fully updated by the 5th. There’s a lot of quests that give you basic rewards too, like Pokeballs, Stardust and other items – but these are the ones that reward those all-important Pokemon encounters:

Battle Field Missions & Rewards list

  • Battle in a Gym: Mankey or Makuhita encounter (shiny chance)
  • Battle in a Gym 5 times: Machop encounter (shiny chance)
  • Win a Gym Battle: Bulbasaur, Charmander or Squirtle encounter (shiny chance)
  • Win 3 Gym Battles: Jynx encounter
  • Win 5 Gym Battles: Grimer encounter (shiny chance)
  • Battle in a Raid: Meditite encounter (shiny chance)
  • Win a Level 2 or Higher Raid: Sableye encounter (shiny chance)
  • Win a Level 3 or Higher Raid: Omanyte encounter or Kabuto encounter (shiny chance)
  • Win 5 Raids: Aerodactyl encounter (shiny chance)
  • Use a Super-Effective Charge Attack 7 Times: Electabuzz encounter

Catch Field Missions & Rewards list

  • Catch 10 Pokemon: Magikarp encounter (shiny chance) or Teddiursa encounter
  • Catch 5 Pokemon with Weather Boost: Vulpix or Poliwag encounter
  • Catch a Dragon-type Pokemon: Dratini (shiny chance)
  • Catch 5 Fighting-type Pokemon: Breloom encounter
  • Catch 5 Normal, Electric or Poison-type Pokemon: Starmie encounter
  • Catch 5 Water-type Pokemon: Seel encounter (shiny chance)
  • Catch 3 Electric, Poison or Normal-type Pokemon: Plusle or Minun encounter (shiny chance)
  • Catch 5 Flying, Dark or Psychic-type Pokemon: Poocheyna encounter (shiny chance)
  • Catch 7 Grass, Water or Fire-type Pokemon: Growlithe encounter (shiny chance)
  • Catch 10 Ground-type Pokemon: Diglett encounter (shiny chance)

Berry Field Missions & Rewards list

  • Use 5 Berries while catching Pokemon: Weepinbel encounter
  • Use 5 Nanab Berries while catching Pokemon: Swalot encounter
  • Use 10 Pinap Berries while catching Pokemon: Loudred encounter

Pokeball & Throw Field Missions & Rewards list

  • Make 5 Great Curveball Throws in a row: Spinda encounter
  • Make 5 Nice Throws: Geodude encounter (shiny chance) or Voltorb encounter
  • Make 3 Great Throws: Gastly encounter (shiny chance), Lileep encounter or Anorith encounter
  • Make 3 Great Throws in a row: Onix encounter
  • Make 5 Great Curveball Throws in a row: Spinda encounter
  • Make 3 Excellent Throws in a row: Larvitar encounter (shiny chance)

Management & Evolution Field Missions & Rewards list

  • Evolve a Pokemon: Eevee encounter or Pidgey encounter (shiny chance)
  • Power up a Pokemon 5 times: Bulbasaur, Charmander or Squirtle encounter (shiny chance)
  • Use an item to evolve a Pokemon: Skamory encounter
  • Trade a Pokemon: Drifloon encounter (shiny chance)
  • Transfer 3 Pokemon: Shuppet encounter (shiny chance)
  • Earn 5 Candies walking with your Buddy: Slakoth encounter
  • Send 10 Gifts to Friends: Alolan Exeggutor encounter

Egg Hatching Field Missions & Rewards

  • Hatch an Egg: Exeggcute encounter or Spoink encounter (shiny chance)
  • Hatch 3 Eggs: Magmar encounter
  • Hatch 5 Eggs: Chansey encounter (plus 3 Rare Candy)

Detective Pikachu Field Research & Rewards list

In addition to the regular slate of missions, May also features research and rewards tied to the release of Detective Pikachu, the first live-action Pokemon movie. These special research items are little puzzles whose answers become clear when you see the movie. But if you haven’t yet, here’s the field missions, the answers and their rewards:

  • Catch the Seed Pokemon that is seen walking in a river: catch Bulbasaur for a Treecko reward
  • Catch the Fire-type Evolution of Eevee: catch Flareon for an Arcanine reward
  • Catch the Water-type Pokemon carried in a backpack: catch Psyduck for a Magikarp reward
  • Catch 10 Jigglypuff, Aipom or Snubbull: Ditto encounter reward, taking the form of Zubat

Remember that this is just one of many additions to the game for the movie cross-over, including the chance to catch a Detective Pikachu in Pokemon Go.

Past Research Breakthrough Rewards

For posterity’s sake, here are the past field research breakthrough rewards as featured in Pokemon Go – just so you know what you’ve missed.

2018 Research Breakthrough rewards in Pokemon Go:

  • April 2018: Moltres (fire-themed research)
  • May 2018: Zapdos (electric-themed research)
  • June 2018: Articuno (ice-themed research)
  • July 2018: Snorlax (Kanto research)
  • August 2018: Raikou (electric-themed research)
  • September 2018:Entei (fire-themed research)
  • October 2018: Suicune (water-themed research)
  • November 2018: Shedinja (bug-themed research)
  • December 2018: Best of 2018 (all previous Pokemon)
  • January & February 2019: Legendary Birds
  • March & April 2019: Raikou, Entei, Suicune, Lugia, Ho-oh, Regice, Registeel, Regirock
  • May 2019: Ho-oh, Lugia, Latias, Latios

Special Research Quests & Tasks in Pokemon Go: a quick introduction

A little swipe across your field research menu will also take you to the Special Research Tasks. These work a little differently, and mercifully for my fingers (and your eyes) don’t require so much assistance or explanation on this page. Still, for avoidance of confusion, let’s talk about them a bit.

The Special Research Quests are essentially the closest thing Pokemon Go has to a ‘story mode’ – these are fixed quests with fixed objectives and, ultimately, fixed rewards. Each ‘stage’ of the Special Research Quests requires you to complete three missions each with a smaller individual reward in order to unlock the larger reward for that phase of the quest. Once you’ve done that, Professor Willow will then introduce the next phase to you.

The first Special Research Quest in the game is ‘A Mythical Discovery’, and it’s not much of a spoiler to say it leads to your ability to unlock mythical 151st Pokemon Mew in the game – and now, it can also unlock mythical creature Celebi. Getting there requires completion of a range of missions, however, doing everything from gym battles and raids to catching rarer, difficult-to-locate Pokemon like Ditto. Completing each phase of the mission will eventually deliver you to an encounter with the mythical Pokemon.

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