Niantic has confirmed that three new content features/patches are coming to the game, and we believe we figured out when these updates are coming, and please note this is just an idea:
- Pokemon GO Trading releases in November 2016
- Pokemon GO Trainer Battles release in March 2017
- Pokemon GO Gen II releases in June-July 2017
Trading System November 2016
Pokemon Trading is one of the most known features of the Pokemon Company’s games. We’ve seen a wide variety of players obtain Pokemon that aren’t able to be caught in their version whether it be GBA, DS etc. Pokemon such as Gengar only being able to be evolved through trade-in earlier versions is one of the better reasons for using the Trading System.
We strongly believe that the Trade system will support trading with nearby trainers only, at least in the first version.
The estimated time required to develop, test, and deploy this kind of feature is a bit more than 2 months. That estimation includes the following:
- 1 week for product discussion and validation (meetings)
- 4-6 weeks for development
- 2-3 weeks of Beta and bug fixing before release
With that estimation in mind, it’s highly unlikely, if not almost impossible, that we’ll see the Trade system late November if anything giving time for the new tracker to be released.
Trainer Battles March 2017
When compared with the Trade system, the Trainer Battle system is more complex and expensive to develop. With that in mind, the estimate for this feature is quite bigger. The estimated time to develop, test, and deploy Trainer Battles is around 3-4 months from Trading Release:
- 2 weeks of product discussion and validation (meetings)
- 3-4 weeks of development time
- 2-3 weeks of testing and bug fixing
- 4 weeks of beta and more bug fixing before release
So far Niantic has confirmed of meetings about trainer battles and trading so we can say that this issue is over with however developing this and adding it to the system and beta testing will take a bit longer.
Here’s how we think it’ll happen:
Most, if not all, of combat calculation and validation, will happen inside the mobile app, not on the backend infrastructure Lag, server rollbacks, bottlenecking and other problems that online games face will ruin the experience if it’s implemented on the backend only Trainers will be able to fight only nearby trainers using Bluetooth or NFC as communication channel unless a friends list system is added.
Local combat helps reduce the server load
It’s unlikely/impossible to have real-time server-client combat communication at the Pokemon GO scale. The Trainer Battles will have a profound impact on the game and will radically change the way we play the game, however, if they do not release trading and trainer battles at the same exact time we can expect roughly a 3-4 month wait period before this is released.
Gen II releases in June-July 2017
When comparing to previously mentioned features, the introduction of a new Pokemon Generation to Pokemon GO should be rather easy, right? Well, it turns out Generation II brings in quite a few changes that need to be addressed and implemented according to the current product we have.
So, if you expected that introducing Gen II will only bring 100 new Pokemon with 86 moves, then you’re wrong. Because Pokemon Breeding has been discussed by Niantic Labs as well as other mechanisms for PokeStops such as being able to customize them will be added with Gen 2.
- 100 new Pokemon and 86 new moves
- Baby Pokemon
- New mechanisms for PokeStops and PokeBalls
- Diverging evolution lines and the possible introduction of Evolution stones
- Example: Scyther -> Scizor
- Moves changes and meta updates to accompany the new types and Pokemon
With Pokemon Generation 2 releases this may keep most of the Pokemon hype to a standstill allowing them to come up with new features and ideas for the game. There are so many different things they can do to turn this AR into an even better game.