Nintendo has come up with a new way for players to “be the best like no one ever was” with a brand new, free-to-play game set in the wonderful world of Pokemon: Pokemon UNITE. As of today, players can download the multiplayer online battle arena game and team up with their friends in 5-on-5 strategic showdowns very reminiscent of a League of Legends match, for all you esports fans. According to a Nintendo’s press release published earlier today:
“In Pokemon UNITE, players face off against each other in 5-on-5 team battles. During these battles, players will cooperate with teammates to defeat wild Pokemon and level up to evolve their own Pokémon. They will need to defeat their opponents’ Pokemon while trying to earn more points than the opposing team within the allotted time.”
As far as exactly what a Pokemon: UNITE match entails, the games starts with a map split into two halves with control points on either side. Players must then earn points for their team by catching computer-controlled Wild Pokémon, while moving towards one of the control points to score goals. As you play, the low-level Pokemon you start the match with evolve and learn new moves, thus making them more powerful as the game runs on. However, in an interesting mix-up, the iconic “type effectiveness” featured in nearly all Pokemon games is absent from UNITE, making other methods of strategic thinking a lot more important. The winner is ultimately determined by the amount of points the team has earned during the ten minute battle.
In addition to the huge perk of being free, Pokemon: UNITE will also be getting cross-play when the game comes to mobile this September. For all you folks who’ve yet to pick up (and never put down) a Switch, this means you’ll be able to play with all your friends on Switch without having to fork over the cash for the console. For those of you with a Switch, Pokemon: UNITE is available to download from the Nintendo eShop now.