Gyms have been re-opened in Pokemon Go. Fighting in gyms now relies heavily on what Niantic is referring to as the “motivation system.” Each Pokemon has a motivation bar, and when that bar is drained, the Pokemon will be kicked out of the gym. So how quickly do Pokemon lose motivation?
First of all, it’s important to note that Pokemon lose motivation gradually over time, even if they are not defeated in battle. The exact formula depends on the Pokemon, but Pokemon with higher CPs lose motivation quicker than Pokemon with lower CPs. This is something that has been confirmed by Niantic.
“To help balance different Pokémon strengths and abilities, stronger Pokémon generally lose motivation more quickly than those that are not as strong,” Niantic said on its website.
It also seems, though, that Pokemon actually lose motivation more slowly as their motivation bar gets lower and lower. In terms of how quickly a Pokemon’s motivation can be drained, it seems that a particularly high CP Pokemon can be drained of motivation in just a few hours. This is Niantic’s way of ensuring that gyms aren’t impenetrable and that you can’t simply stick a Pokemon with a lot of CP at a gym and ensure that no players have any chance of taking it down.
It would appear that Pokemon with over 3000 CP lose roughly 10 percent motivation every hour, while Pokemon with CP below 3000 lose about one percent motivation every hour, one gamer observer on Reddit.
While CP and motivation are not the same thing, they are connected, as losing motivation decreases a Pokemon’s CP. Just to throw out some examples of how motivation can affect CP, one Reddit user found that a 3348CP Tyranitar and a 3094CP Gyarados both lost 3CP roughly every 30 seconds; a 2800CP Blissey, a 2795CP Donphan, and a 2753CP Alakazam all lost 3CP in four minutes; and a 2409CP Dragonite lost 3CP in 4 minutes and 20 seconds.
In battle, Pokemon generally lose about 20 percent motivation every time they are defeated, meaning defeating a Pokemon five times in battle should be enough to drain its motivation.
The new Pokemon Go gym system has been out for less than 24 hours now, so the formula surrounding motivation loss is something we’ll have a much better understanding of after a few days of gameplay. Check back in later for updates about how quickly Pokemon lose motivation in Pokemon Go.