Niantic is introducing a buddy system in Pokemon Go

Pokemon GO, despite its relatively short lifespan on the mobile games market, has gone through many different iterations. What began as a buggy yet addictive mobile app has successfully managed to transition through the loss of 15 million daily Pokemon GO users and into a game that has made noticeably large strides toward upgrading its features and overall performance. The development team behind Pokemon GO has been busy attempting to meet the expectations of over 200 million players, and unbelievably, the process has been met with fan support in recent weeks.

Now that you’re armed with the Pokemon Appraisal system, it’s time to use that to help you decide which pocket monster in your Pokedex is your best bud. Up next for Pokemon Go: the Buddy Pokemon system.

Niantic revealed that Buddy Pokemon will be the next major addition to Pokemon Go on Friday. This feature was actually spoiled earlier this week by fans who dug through the code and found details about the buddy system, but now it’s official: you can choose Buddy Pokemon for your trainer in the next update.

Once the new system arrives and you designate a Pokemon as your bff, the two of you will enjoy special advantages from simply walking together. One of those shared benefits is Candy, which you can use to hurry the evolution of your Pokemon or boost its combat points. The Pokemon Go team didn’t offer more details about the “in-game rewards and experiences” generated from buddying up with a Pokemon from your collection, but alluded to more than just candy.

You can swap Pokemon buddies out of your collection anytime you want to do so. Whichever one you designate at your current buddy will appear next to your Trainer avatar on the game’s profile page.

Sadly, the Buddy Pokemon won’t appear on the map as your trainer walks around the in-game world, but you will see your chosen Buddy in the corner of the screen, along with its current health bar. So when is it coming, the update is “just around the corner” says Niantic.


With each update released by the Pokemon GO Development Team and Niantic, the mobile killer app moves closer to something even those disheartened by its initial performance would be hard-pressed to ignore. Given that Pokemon GO has already made close to a half a billion dollars in just two months, a deeper, more intuitive iteration of the game has genuinely limitless potential, and other game designers will be paying close attention to the mobile game as the industry prepares for a busy fall season.

So what do you think of this new buddy system? Which Pokemon are you planning to make your best bud? If you’ve already given up on the game, are these developments making you want to come back?

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