Pokemon Go Is Adding Online PvP Battles This Week

The Go Battle League is rolling out soon.

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Pokemon Go players will soon have a chance to put their battling skills to the test against other trainers from around the world. Developer Niantic has announced it will begin rolling out the Go Battle League feature this week, allowing players to compete against others online and earn special rewards--including a new Pokemon.

As is usually the case with new features in Pokemon Go, the Go Battle League will gradually be made available to players depending on their level. Season 1 of the Go Battle League will be preceded by a preseason period, during which Niantic will continue to balance the game as players test and hone their strategies.

Each season of the Go Battle League will rotate between the game's three different PvP Leagues--Great, Ultra, and Master. The preseason has kicked off now with the Great League and will change formats every two weeks. You can see the preseason schedule below:

  • January 28 - February 10: Great League
  • February 10 - 24: Ultra League
  • February 24 - March 9: Master League

Once you have access to the Go Battle League, you'll first need to walk 5 km to be able to participate in five online matches. If you want to jump in sooner than that, you'll have the option to spend PokeCoins and start battling after you've walked 2 km. The amount of Coins it takes to participate in the Go Battle League will decrease as you get closer to the 5 km threshold, and you won't need to spend any at all if you walk the required distance.

Once Season 1 of the Go Battle League begins in earnest, the rank you achieved during the preseason will be partially reset, but you'll still earn rewards depending on how well you battled. The more battles you win, the more Stardust you'll take home, and you can also earn other rewards such as TMs, Rare Candy, and even encounters with special Pokemon.

The first special Pokemon you can encounter through the Go Battle League is Pikachu Libre, the mask-clad Pikachu from Pokemon Omega Ruby, Alpha Sapphire, and Pokken Tournament. Only players who participate in the Go Battle League will have a chance to catch Pikachu Libre. Niantic will also add exclusive Pikachu Libre-themed avatar items as Go Battle League rewards.

Niantic hasn't yet announced when Season 1 of the Go Battle League will formally begin, but you can read more details about the featured on the official Pokemon Go website. In the meantime, the game is in the midst of its annual Lunar New Year event. Niantic also recently announced the first details for February's Community Day, and this time, players will be able to vote on what the featured Pokemon will be.

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