Pokemon Go players woke up to some good news and some bad news. The good news is that Pokemon Go confirmed that a new update is on the way that will focus on “collaborative group gameplay features.” That’s basically a confirmation that Pokemon Go is about to launch a new gym system, which fixes what Niantic considers to be the weakest part of the game.
However, shortly before the new update goes live, Pokemon Go will entirely shut down its gyms in preparation for its events. All defending Pokemon will get kicked out of the gyms and returned to their players, and no one will be able to access the gyms for a short period of time.
We don’t know when the gym shutdown will take place, but a Niantic employee on Reddit confirmed that the company would give players plenty of advanced notice before the shutdown would occur. Update: The Italian version of the press release states the gym shutdown will take place on June 16.
It’s believed that the shutdown will allow Pokemon Go to launch their new gym system with a clean slate, while simultaneously clearing out spoofers and bot accounts from gyms. Many gyms, especially in remote areas, are controlled by players who fill the gym remotely and have systems in place to automatically re-take a gym when another player manages to wrest it from their control.
No other details were given about the gym shutdown, but it’ll take place sometime after Pokemon Go‘s Fire and Ice event and before Pokemon Go Fest in July.