The ultimate update to Pokémon Go arrives this summer, adds friends and nearby trading

Ever since its launch in 2016, fans of Pokémon Go have patiently waited for the ability to add friends and trade fellow Pokémon with others. Niantic has finally responded to the desire to do just that, and has announced that the ability to have friends assist in activities and Pokémon trading will be added later this summer. While trading will be limited to physically nearby friends, this opens up a lot of opportunities in the free-to-play game, especially with links to the recently announced Pokémon Let’s Go games.

he Friends feature will add even more ways for players to adventure together in Pokémon GO and earn unique rewards along the way. Friends can connect safely via the secure Friend Request which requires a Trainer Code in order to receive or accept an invitation. Once connected, friends they can team up together to battle at Gyms, participate in Raid Battles, or send Gifts to increase their Friendship level. Trainers can build their Friendship level, earning bonuses in Raid Battles and at Gyms, as well as Friendship level milestone rewards on their way to Best Friend status. In addition, Trainers can send Gifts to their friends remotely by collecting them from PokéStops, which can include useful items and Pokémon Eggs. Trainers can also share and view the stats of their friends, including total distance walked, total number of Pokémon caught, and more.

For the first time ever, Trainers who are connected as friends in Pokémon GO and within close physical proximity to each other will soon be able to trade Pokémon. Trainers will earn the Candy of the Pokémon received in trading, and that bonus can increase if the Pokémon traded were caught in locations far apart from each other. The Friendship level between players trading Pokémon will provide unique bonuses including Stardust discounts. Higher Friendship levels between Trainers will unlock the Special Trades option, which includes the ability to trade certain Pokémon, such as regional Pokémon, Legendary Pokémon and Shiny Pokémon, and add new Pokémon to their Pokédexes. Trainers who require parental approval and registration through the Pokémon Trainer Club to play Pokemon GO will be unable to trade with other Trainers in the game.

Niantic will be celebrating the launch of these new features during the Pokémon GO Summer Tour which includes a series of immersive real-world Pokémon GO events and activities that will take place around the world. The Pokémon GO Summer Tour 2018 will feature Pokémon GO Safari Zone Dortmund in Germany which is free to attend on June 30 and July 1, the sold out Pokémon GO Fest 2018: A Walk in the Parkin Chicago on July 14 and 15 and a Safari Zone to be held in Yokosuka, Japan, later in the summer.

Kay’s our resident Pokémon aficionado, and she recently covered the new Pokémon Let’s Go games in her E3 coverage, as well as written a heartfelt retrospective about Pokémon Go. Stay tuned for more news here on Gaming Trend.

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