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How to Catch Mew in "Pokémon Go"

Melissa has been a gamer ever since her grandpa introduced her to Yoshi's Island on the SNES when she was 3 years old.

Mew, doing an evil cackle as it thinks of how difficult and time-consuming its quest is.

Mew, doing an evil cackle as it thinks of how difficult and time-consuming its quest is.

Mew: The Most Sought-After Pokémon

Back in 1996 when Pokémon Red and Blue were released, players were eager to find and catch Pokemon #151, the mythical Mew. All kinds of rumors were out there, from looking under a truck near the S. S. Anne harbor (use strength to move the truck!), to finding a secret Team Rocket hideout in the Lavender Town tower, to attempting glitch after crazy glitch.

Mew was actually in the game's code, and it was available through contests where players had to send in their game cartridges to activate it. Other players used Gameshark codes to hack Mew into their games. It was the most sought-after Pokémon in the series' history.

Catching Mew in Pokémon Go

Luckily, in Pokémon Go, players don't have to do anything too crazy to find and catch Mew. In March 2018, research quests were added to the game. The first Special Research quest given by Professor Willow, A Mythical Discovery, is the quest to find and catch a Mew. It has 8 different steps and may take a while depending on the availability of Magikarps in your area (save those candies), but eventually you will find your very own Mew and be able to capture it with a 100% success rate!

Step 1

This step is very straightforward and can be done with one visit to your local park, or another location with several PokéStops.

  • Spin 5 PokéStops
  • Catch 10 Pokémon
  • Transfer 5 Pokémon

Rewards: 500XP per step; 10x Great Ball, 1x Incubator, Lure Module x3

Step 2

This step is also pretty straightforward. To equip a buddy Pokémon, for returning players, click your picture in the bottom left corner of the screen. Then click the menu button, and the buddy option is there. Try to select a buddy that has a low amount of walking required to complete this step faster. Magikarp is recommended and you will see why in step 6. Similarly, hatch 2 km eggs if you can.

For the great throws you will need to throw curveballs by spinning the ball then swiping in a diagonal to the left or right. Try to time your balls to when the circle is at half of its maximum size.

  • Earn 2 Candy walking your buddy Pokémon
  • Make 10 Great Throws
  • Hatch 3 Eggs

Rewards: 1000XP per step; 2000 Stardust, Incense x3, Great Balls x20

Pikachu is always Ash's buddy Pokémon. If Ash were a "Pokémon Go" player, he would have a LOT of Pikachu candy.

Pikachu is always Ash's buddy Pokémon. If Ash were a "Pokémon Go" player, he would have a LOT of Pikachu candy.

Step 3

This is another simple step, but it requires access to gyms with raids. Raids generally show up from 8 AM to 9 PM in local time, to try to keep younger players from going out at night, so you'll want to look for them during this time period. A large egg will appear on top of a gym and count down for an hour to hatch, and then the raid will be active for an hour. You don't have to win the raids to complete this step, so if you are a solo player don't worry. You get one raid pass a day but you can sometimes get them by spinning PokéStops.

  • Reach Trainer Level 15
  • Battle in 2 Raids
  • Battle in a Gym 2 Times

Rewards: 1500XP per step; 1x Fast TM, 1x Charge TM, 2x Star Pieces

Step 4

To earn the Kanto Silver medal, you will need to find and catch 50 Pokémon from the Kanto region, which will be more difficult as more generations are released in the game. If you have already caught 50 Kanto Pokémon (evolving them counts, too; it's about the number in the Pokedex), then this part of this step will be automatically completed. Other than that, this step is easy and it just requires playing the game as normal.

  • Earn the Kanto Silver Medal
  • Evolve 20 Pokémon
  • Earn 5 Candy Walking your Buddy

Rewards: 2000XP per step; 4000 Stardust, 3x Lure Modules, 20x Great Balls

Step 5

Here's where it starts getting tricky. To catch 10 ghost Pokémon, you will need to either wait for foggy weather, play at night (they usually show up past 10 PM and are somewhat common spawns until about 7 AM, being most common around 2 AM), or find a nest somewhere during the day. This step can take a while due to how rare ghost Pokémon can be. The Halloween events will probably help a lot of players past this step.

How to Find a Ditto

As for finding a Ditto, it only disguises itself as several common Pokémon, which are:

Gen 1

  • Pidgey
  • Ratatta
  • Zubat
  • Gastly
  • Mankey

Gen 2

  • Yanma
  • Hoothoot
  • Sentret
  • Remoraid

Gen 3

  • Zigzagoon
  • Taillow
  • Gulpin
  • Whismur

Ditto can be very elusive and has a low catch rate. To increase your chances of finding a Ditto, play during partly cloudy weather, when a lot of its disguises will spawn. Also, Ditto will appear to be harder to catch but will have a lower flee rate, so never run from a difficult catch. Try to find it in well populated areas like Walmart parking lots and college campuses.

  • Catch a Ditto
  • Catch 10 Ghost-Type Pokémon
  • Perform 20 Great Throws

Rewards: 2500XP per step; 1x Premium Raid Pass, 1x Lucky Egg, 15x Revives

This comic was created by u/asperusualCOMICS on Reddit and perfectly describes the Ditto finding experience.

This comic was created by u/asperusualCOMICS on Reddit and perfectly describes the Ditto finding experience.

Step 6

This is the biggest hurdle in your quest to get Mew in Pokémon Go, and it is because Magikarp requires 400 candies to evolve. Make Magikarp your buddy Pokémon if you haven't already, and try to play near bodies of water such as lakes and rivers. Magikarp is also available in 2 km eggs and 1 star raids. Use rare candies from these raids on your Magikarp, too. The Field Research quests to catch a certain number of Pokémon may also give you a Magikarp as a reward. When catching Magikarp in the wild, give it a Pinap berry to get 6 candies instead of three.

It's still going to take a while, but you should be able to evolve it faster if you do these things. I didn't know about this step in advance, so I had evolved my Gyarados just before seeing this and finding out I had to grind out 400 candies all over again. It took another two months for me to get past this step because of this.

  • Reach Trainer Level 25
  • Evolve a Magikarp
  • Perform 10 Raids

Rewards: 3000XP per step; 6000 Stardust, 5x Rare Candy, 3x Incense

If only there was some strange man giving out Magikarps to me. These things are gigantic by the way.

If only there was some strange man giving out Magikarps to me. These things are gigantic by the way.

Step 7

Luckily, step 7 is much easier than step 6. The Kanto Gold Medal requires you to have at least 100 Kanto Pokémon, which will be mostly luck if you don't have 100 different Pokémon from Gen 1, so try to evolve Pokémon you already have and maybe wait around for Kanto events that make them more common. Like before, this quest will auto-complete if you already have 100 different Kanto Pokémon.

To get the excellent curve throw, try to time your throw to hit the Pokémon when the circle is really tiny. Hold it there and wait for the Pokémon to attack. When it's about 3/4 of the way through the attack, spin the ball and throw it as close to center as you can. Excellent throws are easier to get on large Pokémon such as Snorlax and Pidgeot. Once you complete this step, you are ready for the final step, capturing Mew.

  • Catch 50 Pokémon using a Berry
  • Earn a Kanto Gold Medal
  • Perform an Excellent Curve Throw

Rewards: 3500XP per step; 8000 Stardust, 5x Great Ball, Mew

Step 8

For this step, all you have to do is catch your Mew. There is a zero percent flee rate, making this the simplest step of all. Enjoy your new mythical Pokémon!

  • Catch Mew

Rewards: 4000XP, 10,000 Stardust, 1x Super Incubator, 20x Mew Candy

The best quest reward ever.

The best quest reward ever.

© 2018 Melissa Clason