The latest Pokémon GO update didn’t add anything overly exciting to the core experience, at least at first glance. The folks over at The Silph Road did a little digging into the most recent text files and accidentally stumbled on hints that suggest Niantic is prepping the release of both the elusive Ditto Pokémon and ultra rare Shiny Pokémon.

Here’s what the update turned up.

New code for Ditto has been added in spades. Code showing the following has now appeared:

  • Ditto appears to be able to be ‘encounterable’ in the wild. It is not clear whether this is enabled yet, or whether it will appear as Ditto before capture, but the species is almost certainly ‘capturable’ (as opposed to acquirable only through non-wild-encounter)
  • Ditto appears to be able to be used in battle
  • Sounds for different Ditto effects have appeared (not included, so as not to spoil the effect!)
  • A background graphic for Ditto has appeared (dark purple)
  • A small ‘spotlight‘ graphic has appeared for ditto that may indicate a different appearance either on the map, or elsewhere

And as for the Shiny Pokémon:

Finally, there is a decent amount of new code segregating Pokemons’ materials into “default” and “shiny” materials. Materials, for those unfamiliar with game development, are specifications for how surfaces appear, reflect light, are colored/tinted, etc.

If it’s true that a SHINY material has been introduced, it is possible that tinted versions of Pokemon may begin appearing.


There are currently no new Pokemon sprites for the Pokedex/Sightings/Nearby tracker, nor elsewhere in the game. We might have expected to see alternate SHINY sprites in this update if “shinies” were truly going to become part of the collecting game.

Take this one with a big grain of salt, travelers. But we’ll be keeping an eye out for traction on this front.

Ditto has been in high demand since Pokémon GO launched in July

Ditto is one of six Pokémon from the original 151 that has not yet appeared in the game. Along with Mew, Mewtwo, and the three legendary birds, it remains one of the most sought-after monsters, and it will be the target of many Pokémon trainers if Niantic ever confirms its existence.

Treat this as a rumor for now, but the time will come when Ditto will be available for all.