Trainers will be able to go head-to-head ‘very soon’
Trainer Battles are, of course, a core focus of the mainline Pokemon Franchise- the games, the anime, and the cards all revolve around it, after all- but have yet to make a proper appearance in Pokemon Go!, the ever-popular mobile instalment.
“Trainer Battles have been created from the ground up for Pokémon GO under Niantic’s core principles of social gameplay: getting players outside and exploring the real world together,” said Kei Kawai, Vice President of Product at Niantic, Inc. “From Raid Battles to Trading and Friends, to Trainer Battles, each new gameplay feature adds an extra social layer to Pokémon GO, providing Trainers with more fun and engaging reasons to connect with others.”
Player-versus-player battles will take the form of 3v3 battles against not only other players, but also the leaders of the game’s 3 factions. New Charge and Shield abilities will add an extra layer of skill and strategy upon the game’s already existing battle systems. Trainer battles can be played in-person or remotely if your opponent is your friend of Ultra tier or above, and both players will receive a prize for participation after each battle, including a chance for rare evolution items. To keep competition fair, strength levels will be capped, with the whole competition organised into leagues.
“The Trainer Battles feature infuses the spirit of Pokémon GO with the classic concept of battling Pokémon, creating an exciting competitive angle for Pokémon GO Battles that also feels familiar to Pokémon GO and main series fans alike,” said Matt Slemon, Product Manager for Pokémon GO at Niantic. “The upcoming launch of Trainer Battles marks the very beginning for what we envision for this new dynamic social feature which will grow and evolve over time with new gameplay mechanics.”
No official release date has been stated, but it is insisted that the feature is coming very soon.