pokémon go

Pokémon GO Finally Adding Trading this Week

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The basic Pokémon tenet of trading Pokémon has been noticeably absent from Pokémon GO. Now, nearly two years after launch, Niantic Inc has finally announced that trading, gifting, and an actual friends list are being added to Pokémon GO later this week.

To add friends you’ll need to exchange Trainer Codes, not unlike how Nintendo operates their friends lists. Plug in the code and you can send a friend request and add them to your new friends list.

To trade Pokémon you must be physically near someone you’ve added to your friends list, both Trainers must be at least level 10. Trading Pokémon requires Stardust, but the traded Pokémon earns Candy in the process. The amount of Candy depends on how far away the two Pokémon were caught from each other. You can lower the Stardust trading requirements by building your friendship level.

Each friend has a friendship level that can be increased through gifting or cooperative battles. Gifts are received through PokéStops, and can’t be opened normally. Instead you have to trade them to friends, which they can open for a showering of loot, and a postcard of the PokéStop location.

Rare Pokémon such as Legendaries require a Special Trade. A Special Trade is limited to once per day, and only between a Great or Best Friend with high enough friendship level. It’ll also cost a bunch of Stardust.

Trading has been a highly requested feature for Pokémon GO since launch. Niantic had promised it was a forthcoming feature. Pokémon GO originally launched in Summer 2016 and went on to become a global phenomena, and introducing much of the world to the magic of an AR mobile game.

The trading and friends update should hit later this week.

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Pokémon GO Celebrates Earth Day with Special Event

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Niantic, Inc is teaming up with charitable organization Playmob to host an Earth Day Clean Up event with Pokémon GO on April 22.

“Earth Day is an incredible movement and opportunity to team up with friends and neighbors to focus on making the world and our own communities healthy and sustainable,” said John Hanke, founder and CEO of Niantic. “We’re looking forward to joining Trainers around the world in their efforts to clean up and preserve the environment in support of the world’s oceans and Mission Blue.”

The Pokémon GO Earth Day Clean Up is a series of events that invites the Pokémon GO community to join together and help clean up the environment in certain areas. A total of 37 events are listed in 12 countries. Find the list of area events here.

“We know gaming can be an amazing force for good” adds Jude Ower, founder and CEO of Playmob. “It’s a pleasure to work with such a purposeful and innovative studio and the inspirational and devoted teams behind Mission Blue and all the supporting NGO partners, collaborating on what we see as the start of a bigger movement towards global solutions through play.”

Trainers will receive a special avatar item to celebrate Earth Day. Rewards will be unlocked for all trainers if enough people participate in the Earth Day event, which lasts 48 hours. If at least 1,500 people join, everyone will receive twice the Stardust when catching Ground, Water, and Grass type Pokémon. With 3,000 participants, trainers will receive three times the Stardust.

The Pokémon GO Earth Day Clean Up even takes place April 22.

pokemon go

Pokémon GO Celebrates the Holidays this Weekend

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Today kicks off a special holiday weekend event in Pokémon GO. The Santa hat-wearing Pikachu returns this year, as well as new Water and Ice-type Pokémon from the Hoenn region (Gen 3). The event begins later today at 1 pm Pacific/4 pm Eastern.

The first Gen 3 Pokémon were recently added during the Halloween event. As a further incentive to go out and catch ’em all, you can earn a egg incubators from PokéStops. The first PokéStop you spin each day between December 22 and December 25 will award a single-use egg incubator.

If you fancy spending a little money in the in-game shop, you can find some of the best deals during the holiday event. Special boxes will include Super Incubators, Lure Modules and Star Pieces. Star Pieces are a new item that grants bonus Stardust for 30 minutes when activated. Another bundle sale will kick in right after the holiday event, from December 25 through January 4, where you can grab special boxes of Premium Raid Passes, Super Incubators, and Star Pieces.

Niantic, Inc are in the process of updating Pokémon GO to support the new AR+ feature in iOS 11 (supported in iPhone 6 and newer). With this new optional feature, Pokémon will be more accurately positioned and sized relative to their environment and distance from you. AR+ mode adds a new challenge to catching Pokémon by tracking your proximity. Pokémon can flee if they see a trainer coming too close to quickly. The additional challenge comes with more rewards, including XP and Stardust.

The holiday event ends December 25 at 1 pm Pacific/4 pm Eastern.

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite Is a Pokémon GO-like AR Mobile Game

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The creators of Pokémon GO (Niantic Inc.) are joining forces with Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment to create an augmented reality mobile game based on J.K. Rowling’s incredibly popular Harry Potter series. Harry Potter: Wizards Unite will utilize the same AR technology as Pokémon GO. No release date has yet been announced. More details will be revealed in 2018.

“At Niantic, our goal is to leverage technology to create real world experiences that help people to discover the wonderful, and often magical parts of the world around them,” said John Hanke, founder and CEO of Niantic, Inc. “The beloved Harry Potter stories have captured imaginations worldwide for more than 20 years and soon we’ll turn the fantasy into augmented reality, allowing fans and their friends to become wizards and witches.”

Gameplay will operate much like Pokémon GO. Players will explore neighborhoods and cities, learning and casting spells, finding magical artifacts, and encounter beasts and characters from the Harry Potter universe.

“With this game, we are allowing the passionate, worldwide fan base to experience J.K. Rowling’s deeply powerful and imaginative universe in a new, truly immersive way,” said David Haddad, President, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. “It is wonderful to have Niantic’s remarkable augmented reality expertise as we develop this incredibly rich wizarding world for players to explore in their everyday lives.”

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite is co-developed by Niantic and Portkey Games. Portkey Games is a games label under WBIE that specifically creates content based on the Harry Potter license. Harry Poter: Wizards Unit will be published by Niantic, and is probably coming some time next year.

Niantic has come under frequent fire and criticism regarding server issues and instability for Pokémon GO, particularly surrounding the game’s rocky launch in Summer 2016. Despite frequent setbacks and problems Pokémon GO proved so popular it reached mainstream cultural phenomenon that most games can only dream of.

Harry Potter’s popularity easily rivals that of Pokémon. Let’s hope they have a handle on the incoming tide of wizards.

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Pokémon GO Fest and Solstice Event Celebrate One Year Anniversary

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We’re coming up to the one year anniversary of Pokémon GO, which has hit 750 million global downloads. Niantic will be celebrating with two events – one in-game and one in the real world.

The Solstice Event starts June 13. The in-game event will feature more Fire and Ice-type Pokémon as well as bigger XP bonuses for accurately thrown Poké Balls. The XP boosting Lucky Eggs will also be discounted in the in-game shop.

In preparation for an upcoming update that includes “collaborative group gameplay features,” Gyms will be temporarily disabled for a short period of time.

The real-world event is the Pokémon GO Fest, which will take place in Chicago, Illinois on July 22. Tickets will go on sale on June 19 at 10:00 am Pacific/1 pm Eastern. Actual details of the event should be announced before that time as well.

Japan is getting a “Pikachu Outbreak” event in August. European trainers are getting a Pokémon GO Event across the continent from June to September in partnership with a shopping center. Details and schedules for these events are still forthcoming.

Pokémon GO initially launched on July 6, 2016. It had a rocky launch full of server issues and bugs. Despite its near constant problems, Pokémon GO enjoyed a level of widespread mainstream success far beyond most video games. The combination of capturing Pokémon and an AR camera resonated with millions of people around the world.

In the year since Pokémon GO has provided updates and seasonal events. Earlier this year it finally added Gen 2 Pokémon. Some core features, such as trading, still aren’t available, however.