That’s right Pokemon Go is getting trading. Two years after the release of the worldwide phenomenon that is Pokemon Go, the gaming is enabling trading. In a statement released on pokemongolive.com, the developers announced that the next update will include trading. You can read the full statement here.
There’s a lot to unpack and get excited about in this statement so let’s get started. First off, the thing this entire update revolves around is friendship. Rolling out later this week, each player will have the opportunity to share a “trainer code” with other players. This code allows you to send items and gifts, get bonuses for battling gyms together, and -most excitingly- trade Pokemon. If you’re thinking this sounds a lot like all that friend code nonsense that Nintendo is constantly putting in everything, you’re totally right. Luckily contact with other people is much more accessible than when the 3DS tried friend codes. Not to mention that Pokemon Go is a social, meeting-people-in-the-flesh game so swapping codes should be a lot easier.
In my city and other cities across the world, Pokemon Go discords and groups of people, who only know each other through this game, are readying up to start swapping friend codes. Niantic has really been trying to keep people interested in Pokemon Go and while there has been a decline in players since the beginning, there is no doubt that their game is still enjoyed by massive amounts of people. This update will most likely help recapture some people’s interest in the game, but more importantly, it will keep the long-time players playing and feel like their wants are still being heard. The community has been asking for trading and some kind of friendship list for a long time and now they’re getting it.
Once players have each other’s codes, they will be able to start building up a friendship level. This level increases by sending gifts to the other person or by participating in raids/battles with them. As you become better friends, participating in battles together gives you bonuses towards the fight. The other way to increase friendship levels with players is to trade Pokemon. Niantic says that as friends you will be able to trade Pokemon however, it will cost stardust to do so. Some trades will apparently take more stardust than others but, increasing your friendship level with the person will lower that cost. The other thing noted in this release was that shiny Pokemon, legendary Pokemon, and Pokemon not in the Pokedex can only be traded in what they are calling “special trades”. These can only be done with “Great” or “Best” Friends on your friend list and will require a large amount of stardust. Plus, they can only be done once per day.
That’s really a broad stroke of what the new update will feature but, there are sure to be some surprises that people find in the days after the friendship patch rolls out.