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Pokemon Go trainers beware! Team Go Rocket Leaders have officially arrived

(Image credit: Niantic)

Team Rocket leaders Cliff, Sierra, and Arlo have officially blasted arrived in the world of Pokemon Go and can now be encountered by players worldwide. The fiendish leaders have caught more shadow Pokemon that have been "strengthened by unnatural means."  

According to Pokemon Go's latest blog post, Professor Willow believes the arrival of the leaders spells an impending visit from the infamous Team Rocket boss, Giovanni. "Their arrival also confirms a suspicion Professor Willow has held for a while: Giovanni, the boss of both Team Go Rocket and the original Team Rocket, may have arrived in the world of Pokemon Go." Uh oh. That can't be good news. 

The Team Rocket leaders have been teased for a long time, and now that they're finally here, it signals the start of a Research event to find and defeat Giovanni. Yep, that's right. You're actually going after the big boss. 

By opening up your Special Research tab, you can access the Looming in the Shadows event and help Professor Willow track down the villainous leaders and Giovanni. The leaders are said to be concealing their locations at Pokestops. When you defeat Team Rocket Grunts, they may drop "Mysterious Components" and if you assemble six of these components, you can create a Rocket Radar to scan an area and try to find their secret hideout spots. 

Once you've found a hideout, you can battle against the leaders and try to rescue their Shadow Pokemon who may have "special qualities." After you've successfully completed the Special Research and defeated the leaders, Professor Willow will reward you with a Super Rocket Radar to try and take on Giovanni himself. Some Grunts may disguise themselves as the nefarious boss to trick you, but if you end up finding and battling Giovanni, you'll be presented with the chance to rescue a Legendary Shadow Pokemon. Oooh. 

The prospect of rescuing a Legendary Shadow Pokemon is pretty exciting, and putting a stop to Team Go Rocket's nefarious plans is an admirable goal. 

Setting off to take on the leaders? We're here to help with our Pokemon Go Mysterious Components guide. 

Heather Wald

I started out writing for the games section of a student-run website as an undergrad, and continued to write about games in my free time during retail and temp jobs for a number of years. Eventually, I earned an MA in magazine journalism at Cardiff University, and soon after got my first official role in the industry as a content editor for Stuff magazine. After writing about all things tech and games-related, I then did a brief stint as a freelancer before I landed my role as a staff writer here at GamesRadar+. Now I get to write features, previews, and reviews, and when I'm not doing that, you can usually find me lost in any one of the Dragon Age or Mass Effect games, tucking into another delightful indie, or drinking far too much tea for my own good.