Who is Team GO Rocket? Meet the new villains in Pokémon GO

Pokemon Team Rocket Giovanni

You know how it is. You’re strolling down the road without a care in the world with your mobile phone in your hand, checking out the scenery, exploring all of the Pokémon available in the close vicinity and contemplating taking on the raids that are nearby. Going past a PokéStop and slide it, as usual, expecting to get those sweet Pokéballs and items when suddenly, a man or woman wearing mostly black clothing and a big ‘R’ imprinted on their jumper wants to Battle. 

While many gamers will likely know who these pesky villains might be, younger players, those new to the franchise or people who haven’t seen an episode of the anime may be left wondering who these peculiar people are, and why they are wearing black Gatsby hats come rain, moon or shine.

Who is Team GO Rocket?

Via in game

Essentially, Team GO Rocket is the Pokémon GO offshoot of the evil group Team Rocket from the mainline games. They attempt to take over various locations in the games and generally act as a block to progress in the games. The group was originally seen in the first generation of the game with Red, Blue, and Green, and returned in Johto with Gold, Silver, and Crystal. They hold the Silph Co. building hostage in Saffron City and are led initially by the final Gym Leader in Viridian City Giovanni.

The group was supposed to disband after the player defeats him at his gym. However, the group instead went underground and returned in the Johto region, cutting off and stealing tails from Slowpoke, broadcasting a frequency that is forcing Pokémon to evolve early and taking over the Goldenrod Radio Tower, before disappearing after the player once again defeats their head executive, who had hoped to bring Giovanni back.

They are also the main villains in the anime series, though this is through longtime series characters Jessie, James, and their talking Meowth. Who can forget their catchy theme tune?

So if you encounter a grey PokéStop in Pokémon GO, it means that you need to prepare for trouble!

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