Pokemon Go's New Year's resolution was to improve its PvP, and as developer Niantic announced today, it's planning to do just that through a new system called the Go Battle League. This system "will build upon Trainer Battles, the current form of player vs. player battling," and is scheduled to release in early 2020.
"Go Battle League will encourage players to get out and explore the world with Pokemon," Niantic says. "Trainers will be able to walk in order to earn entry into the Go Battle League, then battle opponents from around the globe through an online matching system and rise in the ranks of the league. We hope this feature will make the Pokemon Go battling experience more competitive and accessible to more Trainers."
It's interesting to see Battle League entry tied to walking distance. I have to wonder if, like many things in Pokemon Go, players will also have the option of paying to speed up the process, similar to the premium Incubators available for Eggs. I wouldn't be surprised, and I don't think it would be terribly intrusive either way, but I do love the idea of the number-one Battle League trainer also having the legs of a Greek god. In any case, I'm sure the more competitive players - you know, the ones who treat gym ownership like a feudal war - are happy to see ranked PvP in any form.
Niantic says more information on the Go Battle League will be revealed as it gets closer to launch, with a dev diary coming soon. In the meantime, you can catch up on the newly announced November 2019 Pokemon Go Community Day featuring Shiny Chimchar.