It’s safe to say that when people saw the impressive reveal trailer for Pokemon GO, many of them were expecting a more fully-featured product upon release. So far, there are numerous features shown in the reveal trailer that have yet to make it to the actual game, such as Pokemon trading and player-versus-player battling. We’re still waiting for news on Pokemon trading, but The Pokemon Company’s Tsunekazu Ishihara recently offered an update on how battling is coming along for the popular mobile game.
According to Ishihara, Niantic has not forgotten about player-versus-player battling, but the company wants to introduce new features slowly, as to not overwhelm the game’s more casual audience. Considering the fact that Pokemon GO is one of the most successful mobile games ever made, there is a good chance that the majority of its audience are casual gamers, so this approach could be best.
Pokemon battling outside of gym battles does appear to be in the cards for Pokemon GO, but it’s not clear when the feature will be implemented. Since release, Niantic has been updating the game on a fairly regular basis, adding new features like the buddy system, and also tweaking existing ones, like wild Pokemon tracking, to mixed results, so an update could come at any time.
It’s also unclear if Pokemon battling would extend beyond just player-versus-player battles. After all, a key gameplay feature in the core Pokemon games is the player’s ability to fight wild Pokemon in order to make them easier to catch. As it stands, most of the wild Pokemon in Pokemon GO are already easy to catch, but battling could be a useful tool against higher level Pokemon, or even legendary Pokemon, which are expected to be added to the game at some point in the future.
With so many promised features on deck for Pokemon GO, it’s unclear which one Niantic will tackle first. There are some fans that would prefer all the game’s lingering bugs and other issues to be ironed out before any new gameplay features are added to the mix, whereas others may want to see a product more in line with what was shown in the initial reveal trailer. Others still may be growing impatient about new Pokemon being added to the game, and may have a desire to see the remaining original Pokemon introduced, as well as the second generation of pocket monsters and beyond.
Whatever Niantic decides to do next, it’s clear that the studio has a lot of work ahead of it. If the company is able to roll out some of these updates in a timely manner, it could curb the trend of people quitting Pokemon GO, and may even win back lapsed players. Time will tell, but Pokemon GO‘s initial popularity, which made it one of the most successful mobile games ever, could very well be reignited by exciting new features like player-versus-player battling.
Pokemon GO is available now for iOS and Android mobile devices.
Source: The Wall Street Journal