When people talk about experience gains in Pokemon go, they usually talk about catch bonuses, evolution bonuses, hatching bonuses, etc. I haven't found anything that discusses experience gains from gym battles.

Unlike the bonuses mentioned above, gym battles seem to not reward experience in numbers ending in 0 (or 5 in the case of a Pokemon escaping).

I would assume that the higher the CP of the Pokemon defeated, the more experience would be given, but it looked like I was receiving different amounts for defeating the same Pokemon each time (training a gym). Does anyone know if the experience reward for battling includes other factors like time remaining or HP remaining?


2 Answers 2


From my experimentation, you get more experience from using lower-CP Pokemon. So if you have win with a type advantage instead of sheer CP then you get more experience for that.

When I battle the same friendly gym repeatedly to try to join, I find that the experience is not random, but only varies with what I use. So the time and HP seemed to make little difference, since missing a dodge didn't change my experience gain.

I would imagine opposing gyms follow the same patterns, though I haven't gotten a read on how other variables (number of Pokemon used, team composition even if you only use one of them, etc.) affect things.

  • Interesting. I will have to test this and get back to you. Thanks for the info
    – Vemonus
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 0:56
  • The same thing affects prestige gained when training at gyms as well. Instead of destroying the lowest level Pokemon with a higher CP Pokemon of your own, just to be knocked out by the next Pokemon in the gym, I've started just using a Pokemon with a lower CP than the weakest Pokemon in the gym, beating that one Pokemon, and then fleeing. It's a lot more efficient for prestige, and I imagine experience too (I don't pay too much attention to XP really).
    – Ellesedil
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 17:10
  • @Ellesedil wait so this affects fighting opposing and friendly gyms? I thought fighting other gyms was a more standard amount in terms of exp; i only noticed odd numbers of exp from training gyms
    – Vemonus
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 18:36
  • I don't know about attacking gyms. I have a small army of Vaporeons along with the other Eeveelutions, so I can destroy almost any gym by myself with enough potions (I've yet to try clearing out gyms higher than level 6, it's just way too expensive potion-wise). But training a friendly gym up to a higher level, yes. Let's say the weakest Pokemon at a friendly gym is CP 900. I'll pick a Pokemon of my own below that CP that I know can beat it, which is more efficient than breaking out my CP 1700 Vaporeon, just to have it get knocked out by the 1500 CP Pokemon that's next in line.
    – Ellesedil
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 18:44
  • I can confirm that lower CP gets more exp
    – Vemonus
    Commented Aug 31, 2016 at 17:41

Gym experience is doled out based on your "technique" fighting or training that gym, and the level of the opponent(s) you beat. Most people just pick their top CP dude and rush into battle, but you can actually gain more xp by defeating an opponent by using a stronger Poke "type" against that "type" of opponent (i.e. Grass, bug, fairy, rock, blah blah).

If you played the old school Poke cards you'd probably have these match ups memorized, but for most people it requires too much research because you have to quickly assess your opponent "type", and then match it up against the right "type" from your stable.

Ever wonder why when you first attack a gym, the game will default to a lower CP dude? It's not trying to get you to lose, but rather letting you know the best "type" of Poke to use. I don't rely on that though because even if it's the right type, if you don't have enough CP you're going to get crushed.

  • Do you have any sort of reference or source to prove this?
    – Vemonus
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 17:57
  • I think the defaulted Pokemon are all set to be the best matchup against a single Pokemon in the gym lineup. It has never even come close to being a good all-around match for teams with any variety, also.
    – Vemonus
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 17:58
  • 1
    No reference, just trial and error and some of what I've read from other players. Totally agree with you that the "default" Poke matchup is based on best "type" to go against the very first opponent in the gym lineup. After that you're on your own. Also I have found that even the best type doesn't stand a chance if CP is too low. still think the best (easiest) strategy is to just pick your highest CP and pound away. I hope Niantic improves this "battle" process to make it more skill based. Personally I think gym battles are boring when you hit GO and start tapping as fast as you can.
    – NoReallyFW
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 18:48
  • Since the current system does their suggestions without regard to CP, could the experience bonuses you've seen be just a coincidence? (Meaning that you were using lower CP but also had a type advantage?)
    – Vemonus
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 18:56
  • Absolutely. There is definitely more experimentation that can be done on this topic. You'd have to isolate type v. CP against certain opponents and then record the xp awarded. I also don't know if your trainer lvl has any impact on the amount of xp awarded, mainly because I never really paid attention to how much xp I was getting before. From what I can tell with limited observation, I have received higher experience awards when I (1) defeat a higher CP with a lower CP, and/or (2) defeat an opponent with a super effective type.
    – NoReallyFW
    Commented Aug 26, 2016 at 19:03

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