Pokémon Go APK Teardown [0.31.0]

Welcome everyone to a teardown of Pokémon Go. For those unaware we make a difference report between two versions and blog about it. This allows us to find the newest and upcoming changes to a game prior to official announcements and possibly find things that were not announced.

We were surprised with server changes yesterday and now early today on July 30 we have a new version (0.31.0) in the hands of Android users. So let’s take a look on what has changed.

Move Damage Tweaks

This actually occurred last night via server update. We documented this in a previous post, but I’ll recap the interesting changes.

  • Quick move Bubble had a +10 buff from 15 damage to 25.
  • Quick move Rock Smash had a +10 buff from 5 damage to 15.
  • Quick move Psycho Cut had a -8 nerf from 15 damage to 7.
  • Special move Solar Beam had a +55 buff from 65 damage to 120.
  • Special move Hyper Beam had a +50 buff from 70 damage to 120.
  • Special move Body Slam had a -10 nerf from 50 damage to 40.
  • Special move Iron Head had a -10 nerf from 40 damage to 30.

Our Special and Quick move pages have been updated to reflect these changes.

Avatar Customization

Previously only available during initial setup, you may now edit your Trainer’s look. You can find this via the overflow menu on the Profile page.


You can change sex and additionally have all colors available to pick from.

Legal Legal Legal

Pokémon Go has been in the news a lot, both good and bad. This has led to a variety of messages now shown in game.

Screenshot_20160730-100043 Screenshot_20160730-100109 Screenshot_20160730-100018

Basically, play safe out there.

The Step Tracker (3 Step Bug)

This segment will upset a few people. It appears whether by too many people using the application thus causing server strain or bugs, the foot tracker has been removed. The nearest 9 Pokémon have no indicator beneath them. I’ve found that nearest 3 Pokémon visible while looking at map update quicker than I remember. Just walking around a Metapod showed up in my nearest 3 Pokémon and boom spawned in front of me.

poke_4 poke_5

API Abuse Enforcement

Yesterday we saw requests throttled. A good analogy for this is replacing a double swinging door with a single door. Both doors allow traffic but one does in smaller amounts. For those who simply play the game, this means nothing to you. For those who run scripts and/or view Pokémon maps you might notice those being slow and/or not available.

Additionally, we saw the addition of SSL Pinning. The NianticTrustManager was added which enforces that a valid SSL certificate is used when talking with Niantic’s servers. What does this mean for you? No longer can you use a bogus certificate in order to inspect/watch traffic while the app runs. The common use case for this lately has been IV checkers and Poke scanners. Those were technically against the Terms of Service, so now breaking the ToS has been made a bit harder.


Above is the name of 3 new functions added which explain the enforcement of trusted certificates on both client and server. We talked about the grey line you walk using applications that leverage the internal API and Niantic has taken the first step to stop these applications.

Medal Images

Screenshot_20160730-095847 poke_3

A small sampling of the new badges are shown above. Not all badges were converted to this new art format.


We also saw the minor tweaks of

  • Animations for Capturing Pokémon and assorted Gym actions adjusted.
    • The animation for running into a Pokémon is a lot more fluid.
  • New font style across Pokémon and Items screens.
  • Choppy map artifacts have been cleaned up.
  • Reduced memory usage & assorted bug fixes.

This is our first teardown on the game post official launch so it is a learning process of how to format these blogs. It has been a busy couple of weeks here as we are behind the scenes upgrading server equipment, updating our Pokémon Go Guide, enhancing our Pokédex and writing unique posts here and there. Thanks to everyone who has left us feedback as we improve our site.