Gyms are now open again in Pokemon Go. Players now have the opportunity to try out the game’s new “motivation system,” in which Pokemon have a motivation bar indicated by a heart that is drained as it loses in battle. So what, exactly, happens when a Pokemon’s motivation is reduced to zero?
When a Pokemon loses its motivation, it is kicked out of the gym, but not immediately. Rather, even after the Pokemon’s motivation has gone down to zero, it still has to lose in battle one more time before it’s booted from the gym.
This is something Niantic was initially unclear about, on some of its channels saying that Pokemon are kicked out as soon as they lose all of their motivation, and on other channels saying they’re kicked out after losing in battle without having any motivation. But earlier this week, a Niantic employee took to Reddit to clarify this inconsistency.
“Pokémon return to their Trainer after reaching zero motivation AND losing a battle,” the Niantic employee said.
When a Pokemon is kicked out of a gym having lost all of its motivation, it will return to your inventory, complete with all of the coins that it collected during that time; the defender bonus is no longer something that you collect every 24 hours.
In order to ensure that your Pokemon is not frequently kicked out of gyms, you’ll want to keep its motivation up by feeding it berries. Any kind of berry will restore the Pokemon’s motivation, but the problem is that if you feed it a bunch of berries in a row, each berry becomes increasingly less effective, meaning you can’t exactly just keep feeding the Pokemon berries until its motivation goes all the way up. However, you can work together with other members of your team to do so, as if they feed your Pokemon a berry, that berry will be just as effective as the first one you gave it.