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Future iPhone 'Pokemon Go' updates to include 'abbreviated' trading, PvP battling

In an interview, "Pokémon Go" developer Niantic's claims that trading and player-versus-player battles are in development, and will be available to players incrementally over a few updates soon to come to the title.




"It has far surpassed our expectations in just turning everybody onto the potential for games that break out of the screen," Niantic CEO John Hanke said in an interview with Vice. "But the priority for 'Pokémon Go' now is to build in those things that reward co-operative gameplay, and make experiences available that offer more depth than just the capturing mechanic."

The primary criticisms of "Pokémon Go'" at launch, beyond rickety servers under massive player load, were the lack of a trading mechanic, no way to fight the stables of creatures collected in game-play, and only the original 151 Pokemon able to be collected. "Generation Two" Pokemon are arriving soon, and so are battles and trading initially in an "abbreviated form."

"It's going to be done soon, It is what it is," said Hanke. "I'll take the massive wave of hysteria we enjoyed, and just deal with the fact that it's caused us to take a bit longer to get the rest of the features up. We're really happy to make our users happy."

Pokémon Go is a joint effort between Niantic and the various companies responsible for the Pokémon intellectual property, including Nintendo. Even after a rocky start, with widespread server problems, the game was estimated to have generated $600 million in revenue in the middle of October, and is still generating about $2 million a day.

The biggest gaming launch of 2016, "Pokémon Go" has seen a high rate of consumer spending, reaching an estimated $950 million by the end of 2016 across both the App Store and Google Play. The game's meteoric rise meant it exceeded $800 million in revenue in 110 days, less than half the time of "Candy Crush Saga," a third of the time taken by "Puzzle & Dragons," and less than a quarter of how long it took "Clash of Clans" to reach the same level.

As of Feb. 14, Pokemon Go is sitting at the 8th top grossing spot, nearly eight months after initial release.