Posted by Michael Mitchell @MitchFizzl
Gamer, writer, occasional pedant. Mitch lives up to all these adjectives and more by writing for Now Loading and Blizzard Watch. @Fizzl_CTR.
Michael Mitchell

Pokémon GO has seen its immense popularity drop off a bit in the past two months. A lot of this has been the result of unwanted changes and a lack of communication from Niantic, though that second one has certainly improved.

But the latest update, which was announced earlier today, will add a buddy system to the game which will likely bring back a lot of players who have been away for a while. This new system allows you to assign a Pokémon as your buddy and then earn Candy for that Pokémon after walking a certain distance, as well as open up "unique in-game rewards and experiences."

While details are sparse, that first part has a lot of people interested. Earning Candy just by walking opens a lot of possibility for leveling Pokémon that were very difficult to level before.

If you're unsure what Pokémon to use as your buddy, we have a couple recommendations below! Keep in mind, evolutions for all of these do have a chance to spawn in the wild, but even if you get lucky and find one, Candy is always useful in boosting your Pokémons' stats!

1. Any of the starter Pokémon

It might be a little cliche, but the starter Pokémon make for the perfect buddies. Not only are they pretty rare to find in the wild, they're also generally hard to catch even when you do find them. And while it's still possible to catch one of their evolved forms, it's pretty rare — but if you do catch one, you can still save up Candy using your starter.

By the way, this includes Pikachu, who is technically a starter Pokémon (albeit a hidden one). Although, if you choose Pikachu as your buddy and then evolve him, are you a true Pokémon fan? Ash doesn't think so.

2. Magikarp

No, that's not a joke. Magikarp may be one of the easiest Pokémon to catch, but the reason you'll want him as a buddy is because it takes a whopping 400 Magikarp Candy to evolve him into Gyarados.

Really, that's it. Anything to make evolving him go faster, right?

3. Dratini

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This Pokémon is still pretty rare — even more so with the way Niantic shakes up nest locations — but the big draw to having a Dratini buddy is the fact that this Pokémon evolves into one of the game's strongest: Dragonite.

If you're ever planning on taking over Gyms and showing off your collection, a Dragonite will be the envy of those around you. More Dratini Candy is a solid step in that direction.

4. Omanyte


Omanyte's rarity may depend on your location, but if you're like me, you don't have much of a chance at capturing one outside of hatching an Egg.

As a result, it's not just Omanyte that's rare; Omastar is very rare as well. Once you get your hands on an Omanyte, getting as much Candy as possible will be key in filling your Pokedex by adding Omastar to it.

Oh, and with Omanyte as your buddy, you can flaunt your membership to the Church of Helix. Praise Helix!

5. Magnemite

Magnemite makes the list because he's another one like Omanyte. He's not always the easiest to find, and finding him doesn't necessarily mean capturing him. But he can come from Eggs and he has an evolution that can be taken advantage of with additional Candy.

Again, for collectors, it'll help to make him a buddy if for nothing other than an easier way of grabbing Magneton.

6. Grimer

I'll be honest, I have yet to see a Grimer anywhere. He seems pretty tough to even run into in the world, and his evolution, Muk, is one of the stronger Pokémon out there.

He may not be the most attractive Pokémon to keep around as a buddy, but he's rare all the same and it'll pay off for collectors. Also, he's pretty friendly once you get past the weird liquid-garbage-like-blob aspect of him.

7. Kabuto

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Image via

Kabuto is cute, he's rare, and his evolution is really darn strong. Unlike Ash who apparently doesn't care to catch Kabuto or Kabutops when there are hundreds in front of him, Pokémon GO trainers should be very interested in both.

Kabuto may be found in the wild if you live near coasts, but he's generally pretty hard to find outside of Eggs. Having Kabutops as his evolution makes him even more of a must for a buddy.

This list is just a start as far as Pokémon buddies are concerned – new nest migrations might make some of those rarer Pokémon easier to find. But if you're looking to make the most of the upcoming buddy system, these'll all be good options. Of course, you could always have your buddy just be your buddy and not worry about Candy. It's up to you!

What Pokémon Will You Make Your Buddy in 'Pokémon GO'?