Pokémon Go Field Research was a major addition for the game in 2018, introducing new Pokémon Go tasks for players to accomplish.
Completing Pokémon Field Research tasks in Pokémon Go also provides unique rewards as part of Research Breakthroughs, while Special Research tasks help you uncover never before seen Pokémon, including the elusive Mythical Pokémon Mew.
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Pokémon Go December Field Research tasks and Research Breakthrough rewards
The December Field Research in Pokémon Go offers a collection of new and old Field Research tasks.
After completing seven tasks, the December Research Breakthrough reward Pokémon can be either Lapras, Galarian Weezing, Galarian Mr. Mime, Furfrou, Goomy or Jangmo-O.
As for the individual December Field Research rewards (via the community work on the Silph Road subreddit), they are as follows:
Pokémon Go December Research tasks and rewards:
Catching Pokémon related Field Research tasks
- Catch 5 Pokémon reward - Bergmite or Cubchoo
- Catch 7 Pokémon reward - Magikarp, Stufful or Wimpod
- Catch 10 Pokémon reward - Jigglypuff, Ralts or Morelull
- Catch 5 Pokémon with Weather Boost reward - Vulpix, Poliwag, Wingull, Hippopotas, Snover, Roggenrola or Vanillite
- Catch 7 different species of Pokémon reward - Golett
- Catch 15 different species of Pokémon reward - Sandygast
- Catch a Dragon-type Pokémon reward - Dratini, Bagon or Axew
- Catch 5 Grass or Ice-type Pokémon reward - Snover, Vanillite or Smoliv
- Catch 10 Grass-type Pokémon reward - 10 Venusaur or Sceptile Mega Energy
- Catch 10 Fire-type Pokémon reward - 10 Charizard or Blaziken Mega Energy
- Catch 10 Normal-type Pokémon reward - 10 Pidgeot Mega Energy
- Catch 10 Water-type Pokémon reward - 10 Blastoise or Swampert Mega Energy
- Use 5 Berries to help catch Pokémon reward - Surskit or Dwebble
Buddy related Field Research tasks
- Earn 2 Candies walking with your buddy reward - Jigglypuff, Glameow, Buneary, Bunnelby, Litleo or Dedenne
- Earn 3 Candies walking with your buddy reward - Stunfisk or Galarian Stunfisk
Poké Balls Throwing related Field Research tasks
- Make 5 Nice Throws reward - Diglett, Alolan Diglett or Sudowoodo
- Make 10 Nice Throws reward - Wooper or Paldean Wooper
- Make 3 Great Throws reward - Omanyte, Kabuto, Clamperl, Binacle or Elgyem
- Make 5 Great Throws reward - Scraggy or Tadbulb
- Make 3 Great Throws in a row reward - Lileep or Anorith
- Make 3 Great Throws Curveballs reward - Darumaka or Galarian Darumaka
- Make 5 Great Curveball Throws in a row reward - Spinda (Form 1)
- Make 2 Excellent Throws reward - Dratini
- Make 3 Excellent Throws in a row reward - Larvitar, Beldum or Gible
Egg related Field Research tasks
- Hatch an Egg reward - Meowth, Scyther, Sudowoodo, Nincada or Trubbish
- Hatch 2 Eggs reward - Alolan Meowth, Galarian Meowth, Sneasel, Feebas or Mawile
Battle related Field Research tasks
- Win in the Go Battle League reward - Spheal, Meditite or Frillish (Male or female)
- Defeat 3 Team Go Rocket Grunts reward - Skrelp or Stunky
Raid related Field Research tasks
- Win a Raid reward - Lapras
- Win 2 Raids reward - Galarian Weezing
- Win 5 Raids reward - Alolan Exeggutor, Alolan Marowak or Aerodactyl
- Win a Level 3 or higher Raid reward - Archen or Tirtouga
Friend related Field Research tasks
- Send 5 Gifts and add a sticker to each reward - Delibird
- Trade a Pokémon reward - Shelmet or Karrablast
Snapshot Field Research tasks
- Take a snapshot of a wild Pokémon reward - Trapinch, Croagunk or Cottonee
- Take 3 snapshots of different wild Fairy-type Pokémon reward - Mawile
- Take 3 snapshots of different wild Grass-type Pokémon reward - Scyther
- Take 3 snapshots of different wild Ice-type Pokémon reward - Cryogonal
Powering up Pokémon Field Research tasks
- Power up Pokémon 3 times reward - Bulbasaur, Charmander or Squirtle
- Power up Pokémon 5 times reward - Snivy, Tepig or Oshawott encounter or 10 Mega Venusaur, Charizard, Blastoise, Beedrill, Pidgeot, Manectric or Aggron Energy
- Power up Pokémon 7 times reward - Rowlet, Litten or Popplio
- Power up Pokémon 10 times reward - 25 Mega Pidgeot, Abomasnow or Glalie Energy
Miscellaneous Field Research tasks
- Evolve a Pokémon reward - Eevee
- Purify 3 Shadow Pokémon reward - Alola Meowth or Absol
- Explore 2km reward - Pontya or Galarian Ponyta
- Spin 3 PokéStops or Gyms reward - Doduo, Remoraid, Ralts or Aron
- Spin 6 PokéStops or Gyms reward - Growlithe, Hisuian Growlithe, Slowpoke or Galarian Slowpoke
Pokémon Go Field Research quests explained
Field research are missions collected one at a time by spinning a PokéStop, and will involve finding certain creatures, engaging in battles and other activities.
Every day PokéStops will give you a new quest, and each type of quest can have one of many different rewards, from previously Raid-exclusive consumables such as TMs and Rare Candy and common items such as Poké Balls.
Examples of quest types include:
- Catch one or two specific Pokemon (such as 3x Pidgey or Murkrow)
- Catch specific Types (such as catch 10x Normal Type Pokemon)
- Catch Weather-boosted Types
- Hatch a certain number of Eggs
- Battle in a Gym a certain number of times
- Battle in a Raid a certain number of times
- Evolve a certain number of Pokemon
- Make a certain number of specific throws (such as Nice, Great or Excellent)
- Spin a certain number of PokeStops
Some of these quest rewards even give you the chance to catch a mystery Pokémon. There's nothing exclusive here, but there does include uncommon and rare Pokémon, such as Tangela and Chansey, depending on the quest in particular.
As well as from a PokéStop, one additional research quest will also be added to your list at midnight local time. If you have a full roster of research, then you'll receive a fourth regardless - though if you still have four the following evening, no more will be added.
It's also worth knowing that, as of Thursday 1st June 2023 with the release of the Season of Hidden Gems, the quests and associated rewards now rotate on a seasonal basis. The only excpetion to this rule is the Spinda field research task. This means that both the field research tasks and rewards will remain the same for three months in total, only changing when a new season - both in Pokémon Go and real life - rolls around.
Finally, it's also worth knowing that if you pick up a quest, you are free to delete it and catch another by spinning another Pokéstop. You can also complete as many as you like in a day - so when you have space in your inventory, return to a PokéStop to start quest. Spin the same Pokéstop and you'll just get the same quest again though - Pokéstops give out set rewards, that are generally tailored to their location, which refresh every day at midnight. So if you want a new quest you'll need to spin another stop.
Event-exclusive field research tasks can also be saved in your field research collection and completed after said event ends.
Research Breakthroughs explained
Completing one Field Research quest per day will give you a stamp. Get seven stamps - which will take seven days - completes something known as a Research Breakthrough.
These have even greater rewards - including Stardust and Mystery Items - as well as an encounter with a very rare or Legendary Pokémon.
You'll also receive plenty of other items too - including a chance at Rare Candy, Pokéballs, Berries, 2,000 Stardust, 3,000 XP, and a Sinnoh Stone.
The best news about these Research Breakthrough catches is they cannot run away - it has a flee chance of 0 per cent - so the pressure is off. However, it has the same catch rate as normal, so be prepared for it to break out of your balls.
This means you can use Pinap Berries, or even use it as a chance to rack up some of the harder throwing-based Special Research streaks, without any risk of it running away.
It also comes with strong IVs, too, as if the Pokémon was appearing in a Raid encounter or Egg. It always appears at level 15, which is the same for all mystery Pokémon caught from Field Research rewards.
If you're curious, here is all the Research Breakthrough rewards so far:
Research Breakthrough rewards from 2018 to 2023:
- April 2018: Moltres reward and Fire-themed Field Research
- May 2018: Zapdos reward and Electric-themed Field Research
- June 2018: Articuno reward and Ice / Water-themed Field Research
- July 2018: Snorlax reward and Kanto-themed Field Research
- August 2018: Raikou reward and Electric-themed Field Research
- September 2018: Entei reward and Fire-themed Field Research
- October 2018: Suicune reward and Water-themed Field Research
- November 2018: Shedinja reward and Bug-themed Field Research
- December 2018: Articuno, Zapdos, Moltres, Entei, Raikou and Suicune reward
- January to February 2019: Articuno, Zapdos, Moltres, Entei, Raikou, Suicune, Ho-Oh and Lugia reward
- March to April 2019: Entei, Raikou, Suicune, Ho-Oh, Lugia, Regirock, Regice and Registeel reward
- May to June 2019: Ho-Oh, Lugia, Latios and Latias reward
- July to August 2019: Latios, Latias, Kyogre and Groudon reward
- September to October 2019: Flower crown Eevee reward
- November to December 2019: Articuno, Zapdos, Moltres, Kyogre and Groundon reward
- January 2020: Lapras that knows Ice Shard and Ice Beam
- February 2020: Woobat
- March 2020: Ferroseed
- April 2020: Alolan Exeggutor
- May 2020: Shinx
- June 2020: Trapinch
- July 2020: Larvitar
- August 2020: Scraggy
- September 2020: Alolan Raichu
- October 2020: Shedinja
- November 2020: Togetic
- December 2020: Lapras and Darumaka
- January 2021: Chansey
- February 2021: Snorlax
- March 2021: Gible
- April 2021: Frillish
- May 2021: Galarian Ponyta
- June 2021: Clamperl
- July 2021: Rufflet
- August 2021: Chimecho
- September 2021: Ditto
- October 2021: Yamask
- November 2021: Vullaby
- December 2021: Deino
- January 2022: Onix
- February 2022: Espurr
- March 2022: Alolan Vulpix
- April 2022: Alolan Marowak
- May 2022: Alolan Grimer
- June 2022: Klink
- July 2022: Lickitung
- August 2022: Galarian Stunfisk
- September 2022: Medicham and a Premium Raid Pass
- October 2022: Shedinja
- November 2022: Starmie
- December 2022, January and February 2023: Galarian Mr. Mime, Delibird, Bagon, Deino, Furfrou or Goomy
- March, April and May 2023: Parasect, Pinsir, Snorlax, Gible, Furfrou or Goomy
- June, July and August 2023: Sableye, Beldum, Audino, Furfrou, Goomy or Noibat
- September, October and November 2023: Galarian Farfetch'd, Larvitar, Sableye, Bagon, Furfrou or Goomy
- December 2023, January and February 2024: Lapras, Galarian Weezing, Galarian Mr. Mime, Furfrou, Goomy or Jangmo-O
Finally, the question is - when do the special reward Pokémon change in your Research Breakthrough progress? It's when you claim the reward for your final Field Research task.
So, you can complete the task, but just don't claim the reward for that task before 1pm PST / 9pm UK time of the first of the month, as doing so will activate the arrival of the Special Research reward at the top of the screen.
If it's before then, it'll be the reward for the month before (so in October 2018, this was Suicune). Wait until after, it'll be the next month's (so in November 2018, this is Shedinja).
To clarify further, this is when you complete the task, not open it. Even if you then open it after the change, it'll be the prior month's Pokémon. To be safe, wait until it's the new month if you want to get the latest creature.
The Season of Timeless Travels has arrived in Pokémon Go! The Along the Routes event is here, bringing Gift Exchange and the A Route to New Friendships quest with it. During it, take the time to try out Routes and Party Play while you're hunting down rare Pokémon, fighting in the Go Battle League or competing in PokéStop Showcases.
What are Special Research quests?
Special Research quests, meanwhile, are story-based questlines with unique rewards. Unlike Field Research quests, these are fixed objectives that every player will face, and appear in the game infrequently.
Our A Mythical Discovery explains the eight steps required to unlock Mew, which includes finding specific Pokémon, participating in Raid and Gym battles, and reaching a certain Trainer level.
Since then we've seen more special research quests arrive for other mythical Pokémon, like Celebi and Meloetta, and ones themed around battling Team Go Rocket or investigating the Ultra Beasts. Ocassionally, you can even purchase a special research from the in-game Pokémon Go store, like Wish Granted, which will allow you to earn additional Pokémon, items or avatar clothing.
Make sure you're playing Pokémon Go regularly to ensure you're keeping up with all of the special research quests! Remember - since they don't have deadlines, you can complete these quests at your own pace.
Everything else you need to know about Research quests in Pokémon Go
Though the quest features are well explained in the game, there's some nuance that will help you get the most out of each objective you undertake.
- Completing one of the Special Research objectives will not add a daily stamp to your Research Breakthrough progress - it must be from a Field Research quest instead.
- You can cancel and complete as many Field Research quests as you want per day.
- As long as you have space for it, you will recieve one field research task automatically every day.
- It's possible to have multiple of the same Field Quest at once, and complete them all at the same time.
- Pokémon encounters from Research quests always feature Level 15 Pokémon, with the 66 per cent to 100 per cent IV spreads you also find in Raid or Egg encounters, and are unaffected by the weather.
- Certain Special Research quests (also known as Mew steps) will be automatically completed if you complete their requirements since they are impossible to 'repeat', such as reaching a certain Trainer or medal level.
- You can spin the same PokéStop for Stop-spinning quests, and there is no difference between Gym Discs and PokéStop Discs when completing spin quests - though Gym Discs don't count towards "new Pokéstop" quests.
- You don't have to 'view' a quest in the quest screen to complete it, so if you don't have time to check what it is (if you're on a bus and there are PokéStops and Pokémon to catch quickly, for example) then it can wait - and if it's the right type of quest, you might have started work on it by the time you check it.
- Pokémon Go Plus can be used to collect quests from PokéStops and complete objectives.
- The mystery Pokémon you can catch after completing certain Field Research quests have the same high-end IV range as Egg and Gym Pokémon.
- You have to catch the mystery Pokémon in order to clear the research from your quest log - you can run away and come back, but you need to catch it to clear the quest, even if it's a rubbish Pokémon. Fleeing and trying again won't reset the Pokémon's stats, either - once it spawns, they're fixed.
- You can "cheese" the "Battle in X number of Raids" quests, by deliberately dodging your way through them until the timer runs out and retrying repeatedly. This is a great way to save on Raid Passes and complete the quest quickly, if you don't mind killing some time. Note that EX Raids do also count towards Raid quests, too.
- Catching evolved forms of Pokémon does count towards "Catch X number of Y Pokémon" quests. So I could catch a Gloom for a "Catch 2 Oddish" quest and it would count.
- Similarly, throwing better-tierd throws than required in ball-throwing quests counts too. So throwing a Great or Excellent Throw will count towards "Make 5 Nice Throws".
- You can miss days and not lose your streak of Stamps - it's just a cap of one Stamp that can be earned per day, not a "streak" that can be lost by missing a day, like the ones for spinning a Pokéstop or catching a Pokémon every day.
- Dittos count towards the types they're disguised as too - so a Ditto disguised as a Pidge will count towards "Catch 3 Pidgey" quests.
- Hatching and evolving Pokémon doesn't count towards catching tasks, you have to physically catch them in the wild or from Raid or mystery Pokémon encounters.
- You can indeed work towards two quests at once - so landing a Great Throw on a Pidgey will both count towards "Catch 3 Pidgey" and "Make 3 Great Throws" quests.
- You can delay claiming rewards for both Field and Special Research, although they'll need to be cleared before you get new ones. Delaying the rewards for you Special Research in particular is a good idea, as some of the later requests reward thousands of XP - it might be worth popping a Lucky Egg before claiming them all together.
Thanks to the Silph Road subreddit for filling in the gaps on some of the above.