POKMON GO is finally letting players battle one another nearly four years after its release.
Gamers worldwide will be free to pit their virtual monsters against one another in a new mode rolling out to the mobile app this week.
Pokmon Go whipped gamers into a frenzy when it launched in 2016
San Francisco creator Niantic says player v player (PvP) battles will take place in a new mode called GO Battle League.
An early “preseason” version will roll out to players based on their trainer level in the coming days.
“Trainers will soon be able to battle other Trainers from all around the world,” Niantic wrote in a tweet.
“Were excited to announce that the #GOBattle League preseason will be starting soon!”
A small subset of players still plough hours into Pokmon Go each week
Pokmon Go shot to fame when it launched in 2016. By August the following year, it had been downloaded more than 800million times.
Players use their mobile GPS to locate, capture, battle, and train virtual creatures called Pokmon, which appear as if they’re roaming the real world via augmented reality.
Gamers then wield their Pokmon in “battles” against computer-controlled adversaries.
Ever since Pokmon Go’s release, fans have begged for a mode in which players will battle one another and it seems their wishes have finally been granted.
The preseason events, known as the Great League, the Ultra League and the Master League, will act as testing grounds for Niantic.
The games studio will observe how players get on and make adjustments before the first official league rolls out, likely later this year.
To be able to play in leagues, you’ll have to earn entry by walking three miles or more.
That’ll unblock five online matches for you to play. You can walk that distance up to three times a day if you wish to play more.
For lazier players, there is an option to use PokCoins Pokmon Go’s in-game currency to buy access to matches.
The further you are from the three-mile goal, the more you’ll have to pay.
A new Pokmon called Pikachu Libre essentially a Pikachu wearing a lucha libre costume can be unlocked through GO Battle League.
We’ll likely hear more from Niantic on how the rollout’s going later this week.
Pokmon Go successfully drew players in with its unusual approach to augmented reality.
Augmented reality is like virtual reality, but with a key difference.
Where VR replaces your entire world with computer-generated images, AR overlays those images onto the real world around you.
Common examples of AR include Snapchat lenses and Instagram effects, or games like Pokmon Go where characters appear on your camera screen.
In other news, it emerged in December that Pokmon Go’s creators are creating smart glasses that let you see virtual creatures.
Nintendo is re-releasing six classic games including the ultra-rare “cancelled” Star Fox 2.
And, find out how to tell lookalike new and old Nintendo Switch modelsapart.
Do you plan on giving the new Pokmon Go mode a try? Let us know in the comments!