Pokemon Go Adds Virtual Companionship to Its Benefits

Image via The SilphRoad

Image via The SilphRoad

Still playing Pokemon Go? A lot of you are, if its revenue is anything to go by. It has as many potential benefits as ever, so that’s probably a good thing.

The newest update to the app is adding a major feature that’s likely to please both current and lapsed players: the Buddy Pokémon system. With it, you’ll be able to assign a Pokemon as your buddy. As you walk around, you’ll earn candy for your buddy — a feature that offers real control over which of your Pokemon you level up and evolve.

It also means that you’ll be in for a fun easter egg if you’re a Pikachu fan: according to users at The Silph Road, walking 10 kilometres with Pikachu as your buddy will put him up on your trainer’s shoulder.

The patch also fixes a few issues and adds support for the Pokemon Go Plus, which will be out in most territories on September 16. The Plus is a wearable bluetooth accessory that provides visual cues and vibrations when a Pokemon is nearby or when you pass a Pokestop. Rather than pulling out your phone, you’ll be able to throw pokeballs and gather items by interacting directly with the device. That should make playing while focusing on exercise a lot easier.

Pokemon Go is also coming to Apple Watch and possibly Android Wear for other discreet pokemon-catching alternatives.