After two years of inviting players to catch ‘em all, Pokemon Go will soon offer the ability to trade ‘em too. Announced by Niantic, new trading and friends list features will be coming to the game over the next few weeks.
The first of the two features to roll out will be the friends list, which is expected to be available within a matter of days. Adding another trainer to your friend list will be as simple as swapping a trainer code with someone, sending them a friend request and waiting for them to accept or reject it.
When trading is launched at some point in the next few weeks, you’ll have to be friends with another trainer to trade Pokemon with them. You’ll also both need to be above level 10 and within 100 meters of one another – oh, and you’ll also need to be prepared to pay some Stardust.
Share and share alike
On top of your level as an individual trainer you’ll also find that you have friendship levels with those you add, and these will range from 'good' through 'great' and 'ultra' to 'best'. Friendship levels can be increased by doing things like battling at gyms or in raids together, but building up levels will take weeks or even months of playing together; we’re talking Pikachu and Charizard levels of trust-earning here.
The higher your friendship level with another player, the lower the amount of Stardust you’ll need to spend to trade with them, and you’ll even get attack bonuses when you fight together in gyms.
Higher levels of friendship will also be required to trade shiny or legendary Pokemon, as well as if you’re trading a Pokemon the other player hasn’t already caught. These will be called ‘Special Trades’, and you’ll only be able to perform these once a day. This limitation makes a lot of sense, as it should hopefully prevent opportunistic players from offering to meet up with strangers to sell on their rare Pokemon.
A final new feature for friends to enjoy will be sending gifts. Gift bundles will sometimes appear when you spin a PokeStop, and you’ll be able to send them on. They’ll usually include the standard in-game items like berries and PokeBalls, but they’ll also sometimes have a new 7km egg, which will be the exclusive home to some forms of Alolan Pokemon.
Trading is a long-awaited addition to Pokemon Go, and Niantic has said it's not the end of the new features. Now to sit back and wait for trainer battles…