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Pokemon Unite is a 5v5 MOBA for Switch and mobile

(Image credit: The Pokemon Company)

Pokemon Unite is a new, free-to-play, MOBA-style co-op action game for Switch and mobile platforms.

The game was announced at today's follow-up Pokemon reveal stream. Nintendo and The Pokemon Company have partnered with Tencent, specifically Call of Duty: Mobile developer Timi, to create Pokemon Unite. Pokemon Company CEO Tsunezaku Ishihara described it as a cooperative Pokemon game "that anyone can pick up and enjoy immediately" while also offering long-term depth. 

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On a fundamental level, Pokemon Unite looks like a pretty standard MOBA. Players fight in 5v5 battles on a map separated into lanes. You choose your Pokemon at the start, and you defeat minor enemies to level up and unlock new abilities. However, the game does put a few Pokemon-flavored twists on this formula.

For example, rather than destroying an enemy crystal to win, teams race to defeat and deposit the most Pokemon within a time limit. Each side of the map has five banks for depositing Pokemon, so you're basically farming mobs and then invading the enemy's side to score points. It looks like you earn more points for using banks that are deeper in enemy territory, but the rules aren't totally clear just yet. 

As you level up, your Pokemon will not only learn new moves that you can tailor to suit your fighting style (for instance, long-range breath attacks or short-range claw attacks on Charizard), but also evolve. Each evolution brings a bump in stats, and at higher levels you'll unlock Unite Moves which have never been seen in traditional Pokemon games. These seem to function like the ultimate abilities in other MOBAs.

Pokemon Unite doesn't have a release date just yet. When it does eventually launch, it will support full cross-play between Switch, iOS, and Android devices. 

In other new Pokemon news, we've got another Pokemon Snap on the way (opens in new tab)

Austin Wood
Austin Wood

Austin freelanced for the likes of PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and he's been with GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a staff writer is just a cover up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news and the occasional feature.