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Every month, Niantic spotlights a Pokémon for Pokémon GO’s Research Breakthrough encounter. This feature was added to the game in April 2018 as part of the Field Research system. Essentially a quest system, Trainers can acquire Field Research tasks by logging in daily and/or spinning PokéStops (one task per PokéStop per day). When a task is completed and a reward is claimed, the Trainer will earn a stamp (only one stamp can be earned each day). After seven stamps are collected, Trainers will activate a Research Breakthrough. This bonus will let Trainers encounter a specific Pokémon to catch and will have a rating of 2- or 3-stars.

Research Breakthrough encounters can vary month to month. Usually, a single month will feature only one Pokémon, but there have been cases of two or more Pokémon included as possible Research Breakthrough encounters for the month, or even be available over multiple months.


What’s January 2022’s Research Breakthrough encounter?

January 2022’s Research Breakthrough encounter is Onix.


Can January 2022’s Research Breakthrough encounter be shiny?

Yes, Onix can be shiny.


What time is January 2022’s Research Breakthrough encounter active?

This month’s active time window is from Saturday, January 1st, 2022 at 1 p.m. PT | 4 p.m. ET (GMT −8) until Tuesday, February 1st, 2022 at 1 p.m. PT | 4 p.m. ET (GMT −8).


Are there any additional rewards associated with January 2022’s Research Breakthrough encounter?

Somewhat. Niantic initially planned that each Research Breakthrough encounter in January 2022 would also reward Trainers with Steelix Mega Energy. Unfortunately, “[d]ue to an unforeseen issue”, this reward distribution will not be handled this way. Instead, Trainers can earn up to 200 Steelix Mega Energy throughout January via a special Timed Research task (referred to as a Limited Research task in-game in the Today menu section).

The task is to “Catch 7 Pokémon” and the reward is 25 Steelix Mega Energy (for completing the task, followed by an additional 25 Steelix Mega Energy for collecting the reward). This can be repeated up to 4 times from Saturday, January 1st, 2022 at 12:00 a.m. to Monday, January 31st, 2022, at 11:59 p.m. (your local time).


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Written by Jennifer Burch

Illustrator, designer, writer and big Nintendo geek, you can find Jennifer with an N3DS within reach 24/7. As the oldest of three, she has survived many Mario Party, Super Smash Bros. and Mario Kart sessions intact in addition to getting her brothers hooked on some really weird games. (Cubivore anyone?)