Xerneas Will Often Change Colors in Your Storage in 'Pokémon GO' — Here's Why

Xerneas is a multi-colored Legendary you can catch in 'Pokémon GO.' But why does it suddenly change colors once inside your storage? Here's what to know.

Anthony Jones - Author

Aug. 21 2023, Published 1:45 p.m. ET

'Pokémon GO' Promo trailer announcing Xerneas.
Source: Niantic

Released in May 2021, the rainbow-antlered Xerneas finally arrived in Pokémon GO. The Legendary Fairy-type debuted in Gen. VI alongside other well-known creatures like Yveltal.

In the mobile AR game, Trainers can catch Xerneas through an ongoing 5-star raid encounter until Aug. 23, 2023. But for the Trainers who’ve already duked it out and managed to catch Xerneas, you may have noticed the stag changed colors in your Pokémon storage. There’s a reason for this. Here’s everything you need to know.

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Why does Xerneas change colors in ‘Pokémon GO’?

When Xerneas was introduced in Gen. VI, it couldn’t evolve, but the stag did have two forms: Active Mode and Neutral Mode. During an encounter, Xerneas changes into Active Mode, where its antlers become multi-color, and its legs light up gold. On the flip side, Neutral Mode is basically a resting phase that changes Xerneas blue.

Xerneas in 'Pokémon GO'
Source: Niantic
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So, anytime you throw Xerneas out during an encounter in Pokémon GO, it will appear as the vibrant and gleaming Active Mode, then return to Neutral Mode once in storage. This also applies to the Shiny variant of Xerneas that you might encounter during a raid. The off-color version has the same two-form color mechanic in and outside battle.

The best counters against Xerneas to win in ‘Pokémon GO.’

If you’re hoping to get your hands on Xerneas, you’ll have to overcome a difficult raid encounter with the Legendary stag. Thankfully, we have a list of the best counters you can use against the creature to come out on top.

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Pokémon Moves
Mega BeedrillPoison Jab and Sludge Bomb
Mega AggronIron Tail and Heavy Slam
MetagrossBullet Punch and Meteor Mash
Mega GengarLick and Sludge Bomb
Mega ScizorBullet Punch and Iron Head
NihilegoPoison Jab and Sludge Bomb
Mega VenusaurVine Whip and Sludge Bomb
Mega SteelixIron Tail and Heavy Slam
ExcadrillMetal Claw and Iron Head
ZacianMetal Claw and Iron Head
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The best moveset for Xerneas in ‘Pokémon GO’ explained:

As mentioned, Xerneas is a Fairy-type Legendary Pokémon. It's weak to Poison and Steel-type attacks, but resistant to Fighting, Bug, Dark, and Dragon-type moves.

Among the moves available to Xerneas, the best will be Moonblast, Geomancy, and Zen Headbutt. In fact, for PvP encounters, a Xerneas with Geomancy and Moonblast can stand toe-to-toe with plenty of powerful Pokémon.

Overall, the stag can be a good option for PvE and PvP battles, so it’s worth getting it if you need a new strong addition to your roster of creatures.

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