A whopping 400 Magikarp candies are needed to evolve a single Magikarp in Niantic?s Pokemon GO. Players are required to catch and trade off a huge number of Magikarps just to obtain evolve it to Gyarados. However, catching that many Pokemon of the same specie is a chore and may use up a lot of your time that can otherwise be spent on doing other things in the game like actually finding a Gyarados in the wild or getting another strong Pokemon. Is evolving a Magikarp worth the effort?
In the original Pokemon games, Magikarps were often hard to train from the ground up due to their lack of offensive moves in their early levels. All Magikarps start out with the ?Splash? move that?s actually good for nothing, and the creature will only start fending for itself once it learns its first damaging move. A low level Magikarp requires constant Pokemon switching and an EXP Share item. You can also teach it a TM move to progress it.
Since there are no wild Pokemon battles in Pokemon GO. Magikarp breeding might be slightly easier if not for the 400 Candy requirement to evolve the Pokemon. Perhaps the game?s developers wanted to preserve the feel of the actual struggle of breeding a Magikarp until it becomes a Gyarados from the original games.
In hindsight, Magikarp?s evolved form, Gyarados, isn?t one of the best Pokemon in-game, but he?s still regarded as a good pick due to his ?Water-Dragon? Pokemon type. In Pokemon GO, Dragon types can resist Electric, Grass, Fire, and Water moves, so Magikarp?s previous weakness to Electric type moves are negated when he evolves. Moreover, Dragon types are generally good in Generation 1 as they?re difficult to counter due to their resistances. Their hard counters, Ice types, were only implemented in Generation 2.
While Gyarados can be a good pick in competitive Pokemon GO, players could also opt for the better Dragon types like Dragonite. As seen on the SilphRoad?s charts, Gyarados specializes in Defense, so it might be a viable Gym Defender if bred correctly. If not for its Dragon type, Gyarados would not be preferred over usual picks like Snorlax for guarding the Gyms.
Currently, evolving a Magikarp is definitely okay, but you shouldn?t focus too much on collecting all the 400 Magikarp candies. Due to the game?s fixed movesets, Gyarados users can?t fully utilize his Dragon type advantage since they can?t set him up to have more defensive capabilities. Evolving a Magikarp will definitely take up much of your time in Pokemon GO. Only attempt this if you?re planning to include a perfectly bred Gyarados to your team.
Niantic’s update this August has made Gyarados weaker in Gym battles.