Pokémon GO Mega Evolutions
Image: The Pokémon Company

Mega evolutions are a way to pimp your prize Pokémon and make fearsome fighters even stronger.

Mega evolutions were first introduced in Pokémon X and Pokémon Y on Nintendo 3DS, and have been a part of Pokémon GO since August 2020.

For some collectors, mega evolutions are frustrating as you can’t keep the super-powered Pokémon you’ve worked so hard to get.

This is a bummer as mega evolved Pokémon often look cooler than the familiar creatures they evolve from.

But the rewards for having a mega evolved Pokémon guesting in your battle party are worth the grind, even if your new friend slopes off after a few hours.

How Mega Evolutions Work

Pokémon GO Mega Evolutions

When you mega evolve a Pokémon, it becomes temporarily more powerful and gets a range of bonuses.

You can see which Pokémon can mega evolve by selecting them in your Pokémon storage.

If you see a ‘Mega evolve’ button and ‘Mega energy’ beside its candy indicator, you can mega evolve that Pokémon.

All Pokémon that can mega evolve are the final form of a Pokémon species. So while you can mega evolve Blastoise or Charizard, you can’t do the same for Wartortle or Charmeleon.

For hardcore collectors, the main reason to get mega evolved Pokémon is that they appear permanently in your Mega Pokédex.

But, on the downside, your mega evolved Pokémon will only stay in its brawny new form for 8 hours. After that, it devolves into its original form.

To see how much time your mega evolution has left, look for the timer counting down on the right-hand side of the map screen.

The Rules Of Mega Evolution

When mega evolving Pokémon, remember that:

  • You can only have 1 mega evolved Pokémon at a time. If you have a mega evolution already and you mega evolve another Pokémon, your first mega evolution will devolve and you’ll need to collect mega energy to mega evolve it again
  • You cannot mega evolve shadow or clone Pokémon
  • You can mega evolve purified Pokémon, but they won’t have a swirly white aura when mega evolved
  • You cannot use a mega evolved Pokémon to defend a gym
  • Mega Pokémon can’t be used in the GO Battle League (but this may change in the future)

How To Get And Use Mega Energy

To mega evolve a Pokémon, you first need to collect mega energy.

Like candy, each Pokémon that can mega evolve has its own mega energy.

If you want a Mega Charizard, you’ll need to scrape together enough Charizard mega energy. But you can’t use another Pokémon’s mega energy to get Mega Charizard.

To get mega energy, you can:

  • Battle mega evolved Pokémon in raids, where you’ll earn the mega energy of the Pokémon you’re fighting. You’ll get more mega energy the faster you complete the raid
  • Complete certain research tasks that reward you with mega energy for a particular Pokémon
  • You can also earn mega energy by walking with your buddy Pokémon. To get this bonus, you must have previously mega evolved a Pokémon in your buddy’s evolutionary line. So if Mega Blastoise is in your Mega Pokédex, and you make Squirtle your buddy, you’ll get mega energy when walking with your buddy

You need a lot of mega energy to get a mega Pokémon, and it will take a long time before you have enough.

To make things trickier, mega evolved Pokémon are not always available in raids – which is a pain as battling them is the quickest way to get mega energy.

When a mega Pokémon disappears from raids, it may be a long time before it comes back.

So when a mega evolution is starring in raids, make sure to stock up on mega energy before it leaves.

You can only carry a maximum of 2,000 mega energy per Pokémon species. But as mega energy is hard to get, this is unlikely to ever be a problem.

Mega Evolving Gets Easier The More You Do It

If you want to mega evolve a Pokémon again, you’ll have to go through the same process of collecting and using mega energy.

But the good news is that, if you mega evolve a Pokémon again, you’ll need less mega energy.

For example, a Mega Venusaur costs 200 mega energy on its first mega evolution, but only 40 mega energy next time.

But beware! This bonus only applies to the specific Pokémon you mega evolved.

If you mega evolve your best Pidgeot into Mega Pidgeot, it will cost you 100 mega energy, but only 20 the second time.

But if you want to mega evolve another Pidgeot from your collection, it will cost you 100 mega energy.

To make things more complicated, Charizard can mega evolve into 2 different forms.

You’ll be given a choice to mega evolve Charizard into either Mega Charizard X or Mega Charizard Y.

If you mega evolve Charizard into Mega Charizard X, the mega energy needed for future mega evolutions of that Pokémon will be reduced – but only for that form.

You will need to evolve a Mega Charizard Y at full cost before you can reduce the mega energy cost to get that mega evolved form again.

If you trade a Pokémon that was previously mega evolved, it will keep its mega energy discount.

The Advantages Of Having A Mega-Evolved Pokémon

Pokémon GO Mega Evolutions

So you’ve got an amazing mega evolution and the clock is ticking… what now?

The most obvious benefit of mega evolving Pokémon is in battle, where they get boosted attacks and combat power (CP).

But, in many cases, mega evolving a Pokémon can also change its type, which can give you a sly advantage in battle.

For example, Mega Charizard X is a fire and dragon type Pokémon. But the creature it evolved from, Charizard, is a fire and flying type.

To understand how Pokémon types can give you the upper hand in battle, check out our guide.

One thing that doesn’t change about mega evolved Pokémon is their fast and charged attacks. These remain exactly the same.

Also remember that mega evolved Pokémon can’t be powered up. To make your mega evolution kick ass, make sure to pump up the Pokémon it evolves from before squandering your mega energy.

Other advantages of having a mega evolved Pokémon are:

Raids

If you use a mega Pokémon in a raid, all the other members of your battle party will get an attack boost.

If any of your other Pokémon are the same type as your mega evolution, and are using the same type attacks, they will get an extra battle boost.

So if you have Mega Venusaur on your team, and one of your other Pokémon is a grass type using grass attacks, it’ll get a tasty combat boost.

Even better, when you raid with mega evolved Pokémon, other trainers in the battle also get a battle boost. It’s a great way to make new friends!

All trainers in the raid will get a boost for their Pokémon’s attacks, and an additional boost if their attack types match your mega evolved Pokémon.

But if there are a bunch of mega evolved Pokémon in a raid, these bonuses don’t multiply. You’ll only get the highest possible boost from the available mega evolutions, not multiple boosts.

If you win a mega raid, you won’t get a chance to capture the mega evolved Pokémon. But you’ll get a bunch of useful mega energy instead.

Gym battles

You can use mega evolved Pokémon to attack gyms, but you can’t leave them behind as defenders.

During gym battles, using a mega evolved Pokémon gives you the same bonuses as you get in raids.

This includes boosting the Pokémon of any other trainers attacking the gym at the same time.

Team GO Rocket battles

Mega evolved Pokémon can be used in battles with Team GO Rocket grunts and leaders.

If you’re having trouble taking down a leader or Giovanni, try a mega evolved Pokémon in your team to tip the balance in your favour.

Player vs player (PvP) battles

When battling other trainers in your friends list, you can unleash your mega evolved Pokémon. But you cannot use mega evolved Pokémon in GO Battle League matches.

Mega-Evolved Buddy Pokémon

If a Pokémon in your collection was previously a best buddy, and you mega evolve it and make it your active buddy, you’ll get an extra CP boost in battle. This is in addition to the normal boosts you get for a mega evolution.

Bonus Candy From Catches

If a mega evolved Pokémon is your buddy, and you catch a Pokémon of the same species (any form), you’ll get extra candy from your catch.

For example, if Mega Charizard X is your buddy and you catch Charmander, Charmeleon or Charizard in the wild, you’ll get extra candy.

But if you use a pinap berry, this does not multiply the candy bonus.

New Medals

Glory hunters rejoice! There are 2 new mega evolution medals you can earn:

  • The Successor medal is for the total number of mega evolutions you’ve made
  • The Mega Evolution Guru medal is for the number of different species of Pokémon you’ve mega evolved

Mega-Evolved Pokémon You Can Get Now

Not all mega evolutions are available all the time. Keep an eye on nearby raids to see what mega evolutions are currently doing the rounds.

All mega evolutions will appear again. But, if you miss one, you may need to wait until appears again in raids before you can complete your Mega Pokédex.

The roster of mega evolved creatures in Pokémon GO is guaranteed to grow. But, for now, the mega evolved Pokémon you can get are:

Mega Venusaur

Mega Venusaur

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Grass / poison

The main advantage of using Mega Venusaur is that it has incredibly high defence, and can take a lot of damage before it faints.

Mega Charizard X

Mega Charizard X

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Fire / dragon

As it’s a dual fire and dragon type, Mega Charizard X’s attacks are boosted by both sunny/clear and windy weather. It’s a formidable foe when the weather is on your side.

Mega Charizard Y

Mega Charizard Y.PNG

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Fire / flying

Mega Charizard Y is great for attacking gyms when armed with the moves Fire Spin and Blast Burn. You can only teach Charizard Blast Burn if you used an Elite Charged TM.

Mega Blastoise

Mega Blastoise2

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Water

If you’re going to mega evolve a Blastoise, make sure it has powerful attacks such as Hydro Cannon or Ice Beam. A Mega Blastoise with the right moves can crush the competition.

Mega Pidgeot

Mega Pidgeot2

Cost: 100 mega energy first time, 20 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Normal / flying

As it’s one of the cheapest mega evolutions, Mega Pidegot is good value if you plan to battle a raid boss that’s weak against flying attacks.

Mega Beedrill

Mega Beedrill.PNG

Cost: 100 mega energy first time, 20 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Bug / poison

When Cresselia is in raids, it’s a good time to mega evolve a Mega Beedrill. Its bug moves are strong against psychics, and it will boost other bug type Pokémon in the skirmish.

Mega Houndoom

Mega Houndoom 3

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Dark / fire

Mega Houndoom is one of the strongest dark type attackers in Pokémon GO, and is no pushover when using fire moves either.

Mega Gengar

Mega Gengar

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Ghost / poison

With excellent attack stats and a decent selection of ghost types moves it can learn, Mega Gengar can dish out lots of damage.

Mega Abomasnow

Mega Abomasnow

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Grass / ice

Mega Abomasnow was the first ice type mega evolution. With the right moves, it can chill the heart of any opponent with a weakness to ice attacks.

Mega Ampharos

Mega Ampharos4

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Electric / dragon

Although it’s not a stunning mega evolution, Mega Ampharos has decent attack and defence stats. It’s a useful ally when faced with opponents that are weak to electric type attacks.

Mega Gyarados

Mega Gyarados3

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Water / dark

Gyarados has been a fan favourite since the launch of Pokémon GO, but the mega evolution is outrageously powerful. If you’re an expert in using Gyarados, Mega Gyarados is easy to master.

Mega Manectric

Mega Manectric2

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Electric

Mega Manectric is a useful mega evolution when you’re battling a flying type raid boss, including Lugia, Ho-oh or Tornadus (both Incarnate and Therian forms).

Mega Lopunny

Mega Lopunny

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Normal / fighting

If, like us, a powerful Machamp is a staple of your battle party, it’s worth experimenting with Mega Lopunny. It’s technically more powerful, and may give you a slight advantage when using your favourite tactics.

Mega Altaria

Mega Altaria

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Dragon / fairy

There are better mega evolutions if you want a dragon type on your team. Mega Altaria’s dual fairy type gives it many weaknesses, but it can still last the distance and take a lot of damage before it faints.

Mega Slowbro

Mega Slowbro2

Cost: 200 mega energy first time, 40 on future mega evolutions

Pokémon type: Water / psychic

Like Mega Altaria, Mega Slowbro isn’t as mega as its name suggests. It was the first psychic type mega evolution, but it’s not as good in battle as a decent Mewtwo.

The Future Of Mega Evolution

The future of mega evolution is exciting.

The core Pokémon console games feature 46 species of Pokémon that can mega evolve, so there are plenty more to make their GO debut.

Powerful fighters that may get a future Pokémon GO mega evolution include Metagross, Rayquaza, Garchomp, Aggron, Tyranitar, Salamance and many others.

We’ll keep you updated on all future mega evolution developments. But, for now, leave a comment and let us know if we’ve missed anything in our mega masterclass.