Pokémon HOME coming February 2020

It’s been a while since we were teased with the service known as Pokémon HOME. With no real details given except for the fact that we’ll be able to transfer our Pokémon, in the same way, we did with Pokémon Bank. Yesterday, details were finally revealed, and well, I’m still not sure I like it too much.

So what is Pokémon HOME for those who don’t know as yet? Well, it’s basically the service or software that’ll connect all of the current generation Pokémon titles to one another. And when I say one another, I mean a one-way street to primarily Pokémon Sword and Shield. From looking at the infographic below, fans can immediately see how the movements or transfer of Pokémon will work.

First off we have the previous online Pokémon storage system in place, Pokémon Bank. This application which was available on the Nintendo 3DS allowed players to store their Pokémon from across certain Pokémon titles available on the 3DS into it. On the right, we have the Let’s Go titles released in 2018. And in the centre, we have the mobile Pokémon title Pokémon GO. Each one of these titles will be able to transfer their Pokémon directly into the Pokémon HOME application and then to the current Pokémon generation titles Pokémon Sword and Shield. Once in Pokémon Sword and Shield, players won’t be able to transfer them back to their original games. But can transfer them back into the storage facility of Pokémon HOME.

Pokémon: Let’s Go Pikachu! and Pokémon: Let’s Go Eevee! can however transfer to and from Pokémon HOME. But once any Pokémon from them has been transferred to Pokémon Sword and Shield, just as it was mentioned above, it cannot be returned to the Let’s Go titles.

Another important thing to keep in mind is the previous service offered – Pokémon Bank. Since this was a paid service, you would need to make sure your subscription to the service is up to date. HOWEVER, according to The Pokémon Company to commemorate the release of Pokémon HOME, they will make Pokémon Bank available at no cost for a month after the launch of Pokémon HOME. I, for one, do not want to lose all my legendary Pokémon caught over the years.

It’s not all doom and gloom though. Pokémon HOME does have a few neat little tricks that’ll change the way we trade or interact with our Pokémon teams, even when we’re away from our Nintendo devices. Since Pokémon HOME will be available on mobile devices, players will be able to trade in a way known as Wonder Box. Place a Pokémon within this box in the application and you’ll be able to trade with players from around the world. The trade can happen even when the application is not in use, just as long as the Pokémon is in the box. Of course, there is a limit to how many you can trade at once, and this limit can be increased by subscribing to a Premium Plan.

Then there’s the GTS functionality. Better known as the global trade system in previous game versions. This will allow players to specify which Pokémon they’re looking for, and what you’re willing to offer. Just as it was with the previous feature, the number of Pokémon you can trade is dependent on a Premium Plan.

Room Trade allows players to create a room that can house 20 players and trade among each other. The catch here is that you won’t know what Pokémon you’ll be receiving. The final feature in the trading selection options is Friend Trade. This feature allows players to trade with others who’ve become their friends. Players will be able to add friends within Pokémon HOME. This feature is not accessible to players under the age of 16

So, what more could there possibly be? Well, surprisingly enough, quite a bit more. Once Pokémon are deposited into Pokémon HOME, they’ll be registered to a National Pokédex. Once your Pokémon has been deposited, you’ll be able to see Pokédex entries from various games in one place. What’s more is that on the mobile version of the app, we’ll be able to see Pokémon Abilities as well as the moves it can learn. Players will also be legible to receive Mystery Gifts within the mobile version. For example a Pokémon. That can then be transferred to Sword and Shield.

Coming back to the premium plan, if players have this plan, they’ll be able to judge their Pokémon to see just how strong they are. This will be crucial to the competitive Pokémon VGC scene and I for one would love this.

Following on from the competitive scene. Pokémon HOME will also give players access to Battle Data. This will grant players insight into how the current online competitions are going as well as rankings of current Pokémon teams being used. Players will also be able to see battle records of other trainers and which move-sets are popular within the competitions. Another crucial and game-changing aspect to have in your pocket for the competitive scene.

So, the BIG question, what’s this all going to cost? Well, depending on your time frame that you’re looking at enrolling. And according to the exchange rate I used last night for the USD to ZAR:
$2.99 = R43.49 – 1 Month
$4.99 = R72.58 – 3 Months
$15.99 = R232.56 – 12 Months

Is it worth it? I certainly don’t think so. Especially since we’re already paying an annual subscription of over R200 per annum to play online. Is it something that’s going to benefit and increase the enjoyment of the Pokémon games. Perhaps for the “Gotta Catch em all” fans, but more so, Pokémon HOME will definitely be highly beneficial to the competitive VGC players out there.

Source: Pokémon HOME

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