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A surprise Pokemon Go Team Rocket takeover event is starting in New York right now

Pokemon Go Team Rocket Grunt
(Image credit: Niantic)

Pokemon Go Team Rocket activities only recently appeared in Niantic's mobile catch-'em-up, and as the studio announced today, now the dastardly division's begun a full-scale takeover in New York City. 

"The notorious Team GO Rocket will be invading the streets and subways of Midtown Manhattan in New York City from 3pm to 7pm ET," Niantic said, "and altering Pokemon GO posters, billboards and digital advertisements throughout the city in the name of Team GO Rocket. Trainers will have to defeat Team GO Rocket Grunts at local PokeStops to protect valuable resources and help report any local sightings with #TeamGORocket throughout the streets." 

Apart from the altered posters and PokeStops, it's unclear how this limited-time takeover differs from normal Team Rocket-related content like purifying Shadow Pokemon, so there will probably be some surprises as the event goes on. Niantic teased that "there may be some Team GO Rocket activity in the air" over the Hudson River, for instance. For now, here's a map of known Team Rocket activity:

(Image credit: Niantic)

Obviously, this specific event is really only relevant to New York residents, but it also sets an exciting precedent for possible future events. I reached out to a spokesperson for more details on what this could mean for players in other cities and countries but only heard that "this specific mini-activation with the hacking of the terminals is happening just in New York. I can't say much about the rest of the world but I can say an exciting weekend is in store for Trainers." 

If you're in New York, you've got even more Team Rocket skullduggery to contend with. If you're not, stay on your toes for other surprises. 

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As a staff writer and former freelancer, Austin focuses on day-to-day news happenings which serve as the perfect cover-up for his Destiny 2 column. He majored in journalism, loves to hate headlines, and never takes his Switch out of the dock.