The good news is that, as promised, Pokémon Go rolled out a new set of social features on Thursday that finally bring the ability to trade Pokémon with your friends, among other perks.
The bad news is that, at least at launch, the feature is only available for players at the game’s maximum level of 40.
For context, I’ve been playing every single day since the game came out in July 2016, and I’m level 32.
On its customer support page, Pokémon Go developer Niantic says that this is only a temporary situation, and that they’ll slowly be easing people into the feature, though no timetable was given.
Indeed, Niantic has a history of this kind of thing: New features like 20-player raid battles have rolled out to those at high levels first, before coming to the wider base. The ultimate goal is likely to avoid the kind of server instability that characterized the game in the first days of its launch.
Still, players are frustrated – the ability to trade Pokémon was first promised in the days after the game’s original release, so the hype was strong when Niantic announced that it was finally arriving this week. To have the feature in the game, and still not know when they can use it, has made for some unhappy gamers.
The good news is that this frustration will probably be short-lived: If history is any indication, it could be mere hours or even just a few days before most players can start adding friends and trading Pokémon.
In the meanwhile, check out our guide on how trading in Pokémon Go will work, once you have access.
Niantic did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
We’re gradually rolling out Friends and Trading. Currently, Trainers who are level 40 can now use these features. Thanks for your patience as we work to make these features available to a larger number of Trainers.
– Niantic Support (@NianticHelp) June 21, 2018
This killed my hype. Thanks niantic.
– ✨ ShinyDessi ✨ (@ShinyDessi) June 21, 2018
Maybe you should have told people this ahead of time when you said “later this week”?
It’s simple PR. Be bloody transparent.
– Joe Merrick (@JoeMerrick) June 21, 2018
How is this exciting?85% of the player base can’t access it. The majority of the level 40 players are spoofers. Why would they pull this crap? They misinformed their audience and lied. way to go niantic you’ve ruined the one thing people have been waiting 2 years for.
– Amanda Abrams (@amanda_abrams) June 21, 2018