A massive new update is coming to Pokemon Go, with this completely changing the way that the gym system works. The update revolves heavily around what’s being referred to as a “motivation system,” with this now being what determines how long a Pokemon stays in a gym. So how is this motivation system expected to work, exactly?
Basically, the idea is to require a bit more effort to keep Pokemon in gyms. Before, you could station a Pokemon in a gym, and it would stay there until being defeated. That’s still how it’s going to work, but now, the Pokemon will gradually lose CP the more it’s defeated in battle, and so it will grow weaker over time and become easier to defeat.
However, you can circumvent that by feeding your Pokemon berries. This will restore its CP and return it to tiptop shape, and so you’re now required to maintain your Pokemon’s health rather than just leaving it in the gym and not returning to it.
It sounds, though, like any member of your team can feed berries to any Pokemon in the team’s gym, and so it’s not as if you personally have to maintain every single Pokemon that you have stationed in a gym.
Niantic explains on its website, “If a Pokémon loses all motivation, it will leave the Gym and return to its Trainer the next time it loses a battle, so you’ll want to keep your team’s Pokémon motivated by giving them Berries frequently!”
This is one of several major updates to the gym system that will be implemented this summer, and the overall goal is to make fighting in gyms a bit more challenging and cooperative. When the initial announcement was made, some were concerned that this will actually encourage spoofers, as it’s not practical to expect every player to physically return to all of their gyms every day. However, this should be counteracted by the fact that any member of your team can restore a Pokemon’s health, and so it’s not all on you to prevent them from losing motivation.