Pokémon Duel has hit the App Store! Here's what you need to know!

Pokémon trainers rejoice, a brand new game, Pokémon Duel (opens in new tab), has just hit the App Store, and it's developed by none other than The Pokémon Company itself! This isn't a third-party produced game; this is the real deal.

Is it like classic Pokémon?

Not in the slightest, but I say that with joy, not sadness. It's a new mobile experience that brings a fresh take on Pokémon. As described by The Pokémon Company (opens in new tab) themselves:

"Pokémon Duel is a strategy board game that uses Pokémon figures. Build a deck with your favorite figures and then leap into a League Match! Compete with players from around the world for a chance to enter the top League rankings in League Matches. You'll fight your rivals in real time! Win duels, get all kinds of cool figures and items, and make your deck stronger!"

There appears to be a lot going on in Pokémon Duel and seems like the game mixes elements from a few of different genres of mobile games. The Pokémon Company also gave us a little tease as to what gameplay will be like:

"The rules are simple! The object is to be the first player to get one of your figures to your opponent's goal. How will you get to the goal? You'll need to carefully choose your route! In duels, you and your opponent take turns moving your figures. Set up a strategic formation and attack your opponent, or simply block their path—it's all about tactics! Plan your strategy and defeat your opponents in this game of cat and mouse!"

Pokémon Duel is free to download, but the game will feature in-app purchases. The game will also require a constant internet connection, so watch those data limits!

What do you think of Pokémon Duel?

Are you excited to see what Pokémon Duel is all about? Let me know in the comments below!

Luke Filipowicz
Staff Writer

Luke Filipowicz has been a writer at iMore, covering Apple for nearly a decade now. He writes a lot about Apple Watch and iPad but covers the iPhone and Mac as well. He often describes himself as an "Apple user on a budget" and firmly believes that great technology can be affordable if you know where to look. Luke also heads up the iMore Show — a weekly podcast focusing on Apple news, rumors, and products but likes to have some fun along the way. 

Luke knows he spends more time on Twitter than he probably should, so feel free to follow him or give him a shout on social media @LukeFilipowicz.

  • I downloaded and played this game. Once I got past the installation and the tutorial, which was about 15 minutes total, then I was able to play a round. It's a game of chance. You move your pieces across the game board and when you confront an opponent's piece you have an opportunity to knock it out. Moves are carried out by spins, which you tap on a wheel to stop to determine your move. Think Wheel of Fortune, but instead of cash and prizes it's a series of actions. Characters can hit, miss, dodge, or stun your opponent. You cannot, unfortunately, select between an attacking or defensive role. If you leveled up your playing pieces, you do more damage and your moves are less likely to miss. The round is easily won if you get to the opponent's base / goal / whatever you want to call it. The space on the board is represented by a flag shape Think Checkers, Chess, Stratego. You want to get to the flag as quickly as you can because that is how you win. I played a round where I didn't attack my opponent and simply got to the flag before they could figure out the game. I can see kids plopping real money down to level up their players so it's easier to make it across the board and win on the first try. There is some strategy to this game and I appreciate it's learning curve that opens up the game to just about anyone.
  • Upon a little more research, it seems this game was released in Japan in 2016, and is based on the Pokémon Trading Figure game, which was a brief lasting game (never popular in NA) with actual plastic figurines and spinners. So there is some history behind it and not just a completely out of left field, which is a bit of relief. I was really taken aback when I first started the game.