Team GO Rocket Leaders are more powerful enemies than the normal Team GO Rocket Grunts. Similar to Team Leaders, there are three Leaders: Arlo, Cliff and Sierra. Giovanni is the boss of the Team GO Rocket. They made their debut on November 7th, 2019.[1]

Encounter Team GO Rocket Leaders

By defeating a regular Rocket Grunt, the player will receive a Mysterious Component. After collecting 6 of them, they can be combined to form a Rocket Radar, which can be equipped to find otherwise hidden locations of PokéStops where the Team GO Rocket Leaders are, boasting teams of Shadow Pokémon far stronger than the average grunt. The leaders start appear at 6 a.m. and leave at 10 p.m. every day.

Without the Rocket Radar equipped, those PokéStops will only function as normal ones. A Radar may reveal multiple locations, but it is consumed after winning the battle against one leader. A new one must be crafted. It may also not reveal any leader hideouts even when there are PokéStops nearby, and your Team Leader would prompt you to travel to a different location to find them, or wait till tomorrow as the hideouts change over time. However, beating a leader does not change the other spots, even if you craft another radar. You cannot obtain further Mysterious Components while you own a Rocket Radar.

Battle Team GO Rocket Leaders

Team GO Rocket Leaders battles work similarly to the normal Grunts battles. Select a party of three Pokémon and use their Fast and Charged Attacks to defeat the opponent. Enemy Shadow Pokémon fought also have greatly increased CP above normal limits because strength is offensive-biased, meaning they can dish out quite a lot of damage but does not take hits as well as their CP suggests.

The only notable difference is that the Leaders always block the first two Charged Attacks with protect shields, similar to the Master League Trainer Battle against Team Leaders.

After winning the Battle, 1000 Stardust and several Potions and Revives will be rewarded and there will be a chance to catch the first Shadow Pokémon they used. If the battle is lost, a rematch will be offered. Winning them also increases the rank of the Hero medal. Their Shadow Pokémon caught do not necessarily have better Individual Values, but they are possible to be shiny, unlike the normal battle.

The first Pokémon of each Leader is always the same while the latter two are randomly chosen from three Pokémon in each position.

Main article: List of Team GO Rocket Leaders Pokémon changes
Leader 1st Pokémon 2nd Pokémon 3rd Pokémon
Team GO Rocket Leader Arlo icon
Leader 1st Pokémon 2nd Pokémon 3rd Pokémon
Team GO Rocket Leader Cliff icon
Leader 1st Pokémon 2nd Pokémon 3rd Pokémon
Team GO Rocket Leader Sierra icon


Giovanni can only be fought in Special Research, which, among other tasks, requires you to defeat all three Rocket Leaders at least once. This awards the trainer with a Super Rocket Radar to track down Giovanni. Much like the regular version, it will highlight a number of PokéStops; most of them are actually only a normal Rocket Grunt working as a decoy for Giovanni. Winning Giovanni increases the rank of the Ultra Hero medal.

After defeating Giovanni, 5000 Stardust, several Potions, Revives and maybe a Unova Stone will be rewarded. Then Trainers can encounter and catch the Legendary Pokémon used by him. It has a 100% catch rate.

Main article: List of Team GO Rocket Leaders Pokémon changes
Leader 1st Pokémon 2nd Pokémon 3rd Pokémon
Team GO Rocket Giovanni icon



Promotional images


Promotional video

The Team GO Rocket Leaders have blasted their way into Pokémon GO!

The Team GO Rocket Leaders have blasted their way into Pokémon GO!


  • All three Team GO Rocket leaders have name that refer to mountainous features: "Cliff" is a vertical rock side; "Sierra" is Spanish for "mountain range", and "Arlo" is Old English for "fortified hill".
  • The update post refers to Shadow Scyther as exclusive to a Team GO Rocket leader, when it was previously available in regular Rocket Grunts' teams.
  • Event Team GO Rocket Leaders Disruption was held to promote their introduction.
  • On March 7th, 2020, the global take-over mini-event, the leaders used every first Pokémon which previously appeared.[7] The rest of the team was the newest set though.


  1. Find the Team GO Rocket Leaders and defeat Giovanni!. Pokémon GO Live. Retrieved on 2019-11-12.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 PokemonGoApp. (2019, September 30). Professor Willow has started to recover files from the corrupted folder, and he's uncovered these images.. Twitter. Retrieved on 2019-10-29.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 PokemonGoApp. (2019, October 2). Professor Willow recovered these photos from the corrupted folder hidden on his computer.. Twitter. Retrieved on 2019-10-29.
  4. PokemonGoApp. (2019, October 30). Incoming Willow Report: A Valor recruit no more. Twitter. Retrieved on 2019-10-30.
  5. PokemonGoApp. (2019, October 26). Incoming Willow Report: The first of many cliffhangers. Twitter. Retrieved on 2019-10-29.
  6. PokemonGoApp. (2019, October 28). Incoming Willow Report: A shadowy sierra. Twitter. Retrieved on 2019-10-29.
  7. Stardust bonuses, Shadow Entei, Thundurus in raids, and more in March!. Pokémon GO Live. Retrieved on 2020-02-29.
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