Pokemon Go's Mewtwo Raids Are Filled With Spoofers

Pokemon Go's most controversial feature has another big problem: spoofers. Multiple reports have [...]

Pokemon Go's most controversial feature has another big problem: spoofers.

Multiple reports have emerged that EX Raids are filled with spoofers, players who use a program to "fake" their location so they can play Pokemon Go in faraway locations. A popular thread on Reddit claimed that there were only three real-life attendees out of the sixty or so people who participated in a busy EX Raid in New York City.

Other players claimed to have witnessed similar issues at their own raids across the United States. One player even noted that raids at most Sprint stores around the United States were constantly filled by spoofers hoping to get an EX Raid Pass. Anecdotally, we witnessed multiple local raids filled with spoofers at a sponsored location where EX Raids were known to take place.

Spoofing has long been a problem with Pokemon Go, dating back to the earliest days of the game. Players used to spoof to different locations in order to collect rare Pokemon or Pokemon with perfect IVs with the help of third party trackers. Now, they're using the same methods to get the most powerful Pokemon in the game and simultaneously crowd out legitimate players from receiving EX Raid Passes.

The spoofing issue only adds to the frustration around EX Raids, which most players consider to be either a money grab or a failed experiment. Most Pokemon Go players haven't received EX Raids, as EX Raid Invites are distributed based (at least in part) on how many raids a player successfully completes at a gym. If a spoofer targets Sponsored Gyms, which have a higher likelihood of getting an EX Raid than other locations, they can simply crowd out more legitimate players from getting a spot at that next EX Raid Invite.

Pokemon Go fans are convinced that EX Raids are broken and it will be hard for Pokemon Go to convince them otherwise. With the current system now showing a vulnerability to spoofers, it's clear that Niantic needs to make a course correction. However, as long as EX Raids bring in money, it'll be hard for Pokemon Go to walk away from them entirely.