The Pokemon Go Battle League continues on in its new format - with Season 7 of the battle league set to bring players a new chance to rank up and a new suite of Go Battle League Rewards.
In late 2020, the Pokemon Go Battle League took on a different format as part of the GO Beyond update - and that format is now continuing with the seventh season, which will debut on March 1st 2021. Go Battle League seasons are now closely tied to Pokemon Go's other themed events - so Season 7 will conclude alongside the Season of Legends at the end of May/start of June 2021.
Those familiar with the Go Battle League will find much about its structure in Season 7 familiar. You'll still be working your way through the ranks of Pokemon trainers, with your rewards that season determined on how well you do. When the time comes to move on to the next season, your rank will be reset accordingly.
Pokemon Go Battle League explained: how ranks, seasons, and the league work
In its new form, the Pokemon Go Battle League has been significantly changed from how it ran for its first five seasons - but it's still easy enough to understand. Here's the basics you need to know:
- Everything is season-focused. The Go Battle League takes place over a season, which is typically three months long. Any given season will give players a chance to compete in all three leagues (the Great League, Ultra League & Master League), with the leagues regularly rotating throughout the season. Competing in each will net the player rewards.
- The three Leagues are built around CP restrictions. The Great League allows Pokemon up to 1500 CP. Ultra League raises the cap to 2500 CP. Master League allows any CP. Additionally, seasons contain themed bonus-leagues with additional requirements - which are listed for the current season further down this page.
- There are 24 total ranks. As you win battles, you'll rank up. At the end of each season, your overall rank is reset - meaning you start fresh in each new season. Rewards are in part determined by your ranking. The first 20 ranks are linear progression, where you simply must participate in battles. Rank 21 (Ace), 22 (Veteran), 23 (Expert) and 24 (Legend) are different, and require you to maintain unbeaten streaks to earn them.
- You can only use one of each Pokemon species. You can't stack your team with six of an over-powered Pokemon; your team must be made up of six unique Pokemon.
- Battles come in sets of five matches. You can participate in a maximum of six sets (that's 30 fights) per day. Sometimes, paying up or participating in special events will allow you to fight slightly more often. As well as being rewarded for your overall rank in a season, you'll be rewarded for doing well in a set.
Pokemon Go Battle League Season 7 Dates in Detail
There's two sets of dates you need to be concerned with for the Pokemon Go Battle League. The first is the start and finish timing of the actual season. The second are the timings of the rotations within that season.
To reiterate what we said above, Season 7 of the Go Battle League will start on March 1st 2021 and end on June 1st 2021, in line with the general season. The change-over occurs at 1pm Pacific Standard Time - that's 4pm EST, 9pm GMT (UK) and 10pm CET (Central Europe).
Within that period, however, there are the dates when the league changes over which type of battles you'll be able to participate in. These can vary, and we'll update this page if that happens, but here's the dates as we know them right now:
- 1st - 15th March: Great League
- 15th March - 29th March: Ultra League / Premier Cup
- 29th March - 5th April: Master League / Great League / Master League Classic
- 5th April - 12th April: Great League / Ultra League / Master League
- 12th April - 26th April: Great League / Great League Remix
- 26th April - 10th May: Ultra League / Premier Cup
- 10th May - 17th May: Master League / Retro Cup / Master League Classic
- May 17th - May 24th: Great League / Ultra League / Master League
- May 24th - May 31st: Unranked Play
While there may be some slightly different events towards the end of the month, and as-yet unannounced special events, this is the broad timetable for Season 7. We expect Season 8 to begin right away at the start of June, which will also be the same timing as the arrival of the next in-game season in general - whatever theme it ends up having.
Go Battle League & Cup rules explained
In the above, you might notice a few different terms referred to for cups. Each has slightly different requirements of the Pokemon that you can use in them, and also different types of rewards. Below we talk about the rules for each specific league, then some other rules and requirements you should know.
- Great League: any Pokemon up to 1500 CP
- Ultra League: any Pokemon up to 2500 CP
- Master League: any Pokemon, with no CP limits
- Great League Remix: standard Great League rules, except the most commonly used Pokemon will be disallowed
- Master League Classic: no Pokemon that have received Candy XL allowed
- Retro Cup: Pokemon up to 1500 CP, but no Dark, Fairy, or Steel-type Pokemon allowed
- Kanto Cup: only Pokemon from the Kanto Pokedex allowed
In addition to the restrictions above, do remember that you can only use one of each species of Pokemon in your party - you can't double up on your favorites. Remember, too, that the requirements to rank up vary on your level - some levels will be very fast, requiring only one battle victory, while others will really need you to put in the effort.
Pokemon Go Battle League Rewards
The ultimate goal of Pokemon Go battle League is to rank up as high as possible over the course of a season. But the rewards are constant, arriving not just at the end as a result of your rank, but as you play, with every set of battles netting you some sort of reward so long as you win at least one battle. Rewards break down in a few simple ways.
As mentioned above, every 'set' of battles in the Go Battle League contains five trainer matches where you battle, and you'll earn slightly different rewards each set depending on how many matches you win. These rewards are random, and there's two threads: free rewards, and the slightly better 'premium' rewards that you have to use a Premium Pass to access instead. In a sense, using a Premium Pass is betting that you'll do well, handing over the pass in exchange for better potential rewards for the battles.
The more battles in a set you win, the better the overall rewards will be. You can obtain items like Berries, Stardust, Rare Candy, Avatar Items & Poses, Charged TMs and even Evolution Items like the Sinnoh Stone through these rewards. Like we said, however, what rewards are available on any given set is random.
The Pokemon Encounters that can appear this way vary based on your rank. In Season 7, we know the following Pokemon can appear:
- Rank 1: Zebstrika, Poliwhirl, Flaaffy, Pupitar, Galvantula
- Rank 10: Zebstrika, Medicham, Frillish, Stunfisk, Poliwhirl, Flaaffy, Pupitar, Galvantula
- Rank 15: Zebstrika, Medicham, Frillish, Stunfisk, Scraggy, Lampent, Rufflet, Poliwhirl, Flaaffy, Pupitar, Galvantula
- Rank 20: The current 5-star Legendary Raid Pokemon, Zebstrika, Medicham, Frillish, Stunfisk, Scraggy, Lampent, Rufflet, Poliwhirl, Flaaffy, Pupitar, Galvantula
- Rank 21 (Ace): Deino, The current 5-star Legendary Raid Pokemon, Zebstrika, Medicham, Frillish, Stunfisk, Scraggy, Lampent, Rufflet, Poliwhirl, Flaaffy, Pupitar, Galvantula
- Rank 24 (Legend): Pikachu Libre, Deino, The current 5-star Legendary Raid Pokemon, Zebstrika, Medicham, Frillish, Stunfisk, Scraggy, Lampent, Rufflet, Poliwhirl, Flaaffy, Pupitar, Galvantula
In addition to the above, you'll get awards for progressing each rank-up. The rewards vary from rank-to-rank, but as you progress up each season you can expect to gather a wide range of items including Berries, Pokeballs, Stardust, Rare Candies, and various TMs, including Elite TMs.