Pokémon Go launched back in 2016, but it was missing a few features that many fans consider core to the Pokémon experience. Trading was eventually added to the game, letting players swap monsters between each other, and soon we’ll finally be able to actually fight — yes, trainer battles are finally coming to Pokémon Go.
Developer Niantic revealed the news on Twitter on November 30, teasing it with a GIF of an opposing trainer ready to throw a Poké Ball into battle.
— Pokémon GO (@PokemonGoApp) November 30, 2018
The announcement did not mention a specific release date or even a window for when trainer battles would be coming to the game, but with players already having to wait two years with little information on this front, they’ll probably just be glad to know that battles are on their way.
In the lead-up to the announcement, the Pokémon Go Twitter feed posted cryptic videos and images showing a battlefield, which appears to have room for one trainer on each side. It’s unclear if this will be the only way to battle against another trainer, or if team battles will also be available.
If you’ve stopped playing of Pokémon Go, trainer battles aren’t the only reason to jump back on board. The game will have its next Community Days event from 4 p.m. ET on November 3 to 2 a.m. ET on December 3. During this event, you’ll find Pokémon like Bulbasaur, Charmander, Squirtle, Pikachu, Eevee, and Cyndaquill more often while walking in the wild, and you’ll also get double experience points, Stardust, and incubator effectiveness during this time.
Even for those who aren’t interested in playing Pokémon Go again, you can still make use of your account with the Nintendo Switch games Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Pokémon: Let’s Go, Eevee! A section of the map is available to transfer your monsters from the mobile game, and if you then catch them again on Switch, they are yours to keep. You can’t return them to Pokémon Go after they’ve been transferred to the Switch, however, so only do it with the ones you aren’t particularly attached to.
Pokémon Go is available for free on iOS and Android. The Pokémon: Let’s Go games are available exclusively on Nintendo Switch.