Niantic's eyeing PVP combat in Pokemon Go

You say you're the very best, like no ever was? You might be able to prove it.


Niantic's cranking out features to keep Pokemon Go players coming back to catch more pocket monsters. Recent features included the Buddy system, and you may soon be able to battle other players in PVP action.

CEO John Hanke teased the feature in an interview with Tech Crunch (via GameSpot). "I have [a] 10 year old son; he's my Pokemon expert, we play together. He wants to battle his friends in Pokemon Go. Battling is something we talk a lot about. It's probably something that will make its way onto our roadmap."

PVP action would be great, but it was the second-most popular feature of classic Pokemon games like Red and Blue on Game Boy. The golden goose of Pokemon was the ability to trade with friends. Hanke's well aware of the important and appeal of the feature, and indicated that the Buddy system, which lets you show off your favorite Pokemon as it walks alongside you, could be the first step on the road to trading.

It makes sense. Although this is pure speculation on my part, the way most trade negotiations went down back in the day were to first tantalize your friends by showing off your critters, then bartering with them for new pets. Seeing rare Pokemon palling around with other players would be a great way to attract notice from prospective traders.

Of course, Hanke gave not even the slightest indication of when or if trading would occur, only that he and the dev team are aware of its importance in the lineage of Pokemon games.

Long Reads Editor

David L. Craddock writes fiction, nonfiction, and grocery lists. He is the author of the Stay Awhile and Listen series, and the Gairden Chronicles series of fantasy novels for young adults. Outside of writing, he enjoys playing Mario, Zelda, and Dark Souls games, and will be happy to discuss at length the myriad reasons why Dark Souls 2 is the best in the series. Follow him online at and @davidlcraddock.

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