Image of two Pokemon GO avatars, one in a shiny gold outfit and the other in leggings and a long sweatshirt
Screenshot by The Escapist

Niantic Deleting a Pokemon GO Item Caused a Ton of Avatars to Look the Same

If you've noticed that every avatar on your Pokemon GO friend list looks eerily similar, you're not wrong

If you’ve logged into Pokemon GO lately and thought everyone suddenly looks like clones, you’re not alone. Many trainers are asking why a certain sweatshirt and leggings combo has suddenly become so ubiquitous in the game, and we’re here to provide some answers.

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Users on Reddit have noticed that a lot of the Pokemon GO players on their friends lists are practically identical, at least when it comes to their clothes:

Many players are curious about the reasons behind the sudden sameness, and a little digging suggests a few different causes are likely to blame.

It seems the primary force behind the Pokemon fashion trend is a recently removed set of free avatar items, now being sold behind a PokeCoin paywall. When players were re-outfitting their avatars after the Rediscover You update, a set of golden clothing, including a blazer and golden pants, was among the free clothes options. The shiny set became a popular choice, with many players sporting one or more of these items.

However, it seems Niantic didn’t intend for them to be free. Many players note the golden jackets and golden trousers have vanished from their avatars and inventories. In their place, the app seems to default to the oversized white, grey, and purple sweatshirt seen modeled by many an avatar in the game.

Anyone who picked out those golden items for their avatar while they were available for free is likely to log in and find a surprise costume swap. The jacket now costs 250 PokeCoins in the style shop, while the matching pants are 150. This means players impacted by the switch can’t go back to what they were wearing before without paying up.

Related: How to Get Umbreon in Pokemon GO

While many players point to this frustrating experience to explain the avatar clones, there are a few other reasons we’re all seeing multiples in the app lately.

The sweatshirt and leggings outfit is now one of a handful of preset choices for new Pokemon GO accounts. That means anyone who creates a new account and doesn’t spend much time customizing their avatar’s attire may well decide to keep this matching set.

Fans also note that older, inactive friends all seem to be sporting this same set of clothes. Speculation suggests that the avatar update may default all players to this preset style until they log in and make changes.

While this definitely creates a bit of a surreal vibe when scrolling through your friend list, there are a few Pokemon GO fans who’ve opted for the trend on purpose. But given the issues with the new avatar update, a decent outfit may just be the most players can hope for right now.

Pokémon GO is available on iOS and Android.


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Author
Amanda Kay Oaks
Amanda Kay Oaks has been a freelancer writer with The Escapist since February 2024. She's a lifelong gamer with an affinity for Pokemon, RPGs, and cozy games, especially The Sims. Amanda has an MFA in Creative Nonfiction, with prior work on pop culture and entertainment at Book Riot, Fanfare, and Gamepur.