For Pokémon Go players, the true villain of the game isn’t Team Go Rocket and their shadow Pokémon, it’s the ever-elusive Kecleon.
That’s because this chameleon-like critter is one of a handful of Pokémon still missing from the game. But what makes Kecleon special is that it’s the only unreleased creature left in the Hoen Pokédex.
Since Jirachi’s arrival in June 2019, Kecleon is the sole reason players have yet to complete this part of their collection and earn the Hoen platinum medal. From our own experience, this missing entry is the source of much annoyance.
So, when given the chance to talk to Niantic about its Pokémon Go event plans, we took our chance to also find out once and for all when we’ll be able to capture Kecleon.
Upon hearing the question Michael Steranka’s (Pokémon Go’s Director of Global Product Marketing) first response was to chuckle, “Yeah, I knew that that [question] was gonna come up.”
Explaining their absence so far he said, “Kecleon has unique properties in the main series games, abilities that no other Pokémon shares so we want to make sure we do right by its original design when incorporating it into augmented reality.”
Steranka is referencing Kecleon’s first appearance in Pokémon Ruby and Saphire. It was incredibly unlikely you’d find one in the game’s tall grass – which is how most regular Pokémon are found. Instead, the best way to encounter a Kecleon was by accidentally running into invisible ones that developers hid in the game’s overworld.
Steranka’s comment brought to mind a similarly unique Pokémon, Ditto. In Go, rather than finding the distinctive purple blob out in the open, Ditto is pretending to be one of several very common Pokémon – only revealing its true identity after you capture it.
When we asked if Niantic had plans to do something similar, Steranka responded “Yeah, you probably won’t just encounter Kecleon in the wild, we want to make this encounter meaningful.
“I’m really looking forward to the day we’re able to release Kecleon.”
You and us both, Steranka.
Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get an exact date for Kecleon’s release in Pokémon Go, but Steranka made it clear that Niantic knows fans have eagerly awaiting its addition and that we won’t be disappointed when it finally arrives in the game.