Back in the good old days, children would run around the playground collecting and trading Pokemon cards with all their friends. Sure, they were eventually banned because kids started stealing them, but while they were still legal paraphernalia on school premises, everyone had a lot of fun.
Nowadays, gamers who haven't played the TCG game in years finally have a way to revisit the card game without going out in public and embarrassing themselves or dusting off the old Game Boy Color game.
This April, Pokemon TCG will be able to be played with both physical cards and virtual ones. Pokemon TCG will be playable on a new feature called 'Pokemon Trainer Challenge' and this will eventually be accessible via the official Pokemon website. Pokemon Masters in training will be able to create their own character who will serve as their avatar throughout their heroic card-filled journey.
Players will be able to put their skills to the test against 14 different computer-controlled players, or they can go up against random players online. It's still unconfirmed that friends will be able to link up and battle online, but considering that those currently registered with the official website can have friend lists it will surely be an option.
Catch some screens of the new online interface and battles below.
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There will be a total of three different starter decks once the online system launches, and players will be able to start purchasing real-world decks from retailers and import the cards they receive into the game. All of this goodness will start with the upcoming Pokemon release of the new Pokemon Black and White TCG sets. Each deck will come with a code that when registered on 'Pokemon Trainer Challenge' will instantly become available for use in the individual's virtual deck. These new decks of cards will be available April 6th.
It's awesome that Nintendo has decided to make an online arena for those who have no friends... who play Pokemon. The coolest thing about 'Pokemon Trainer Challenge' is that it could really only be a test for Nintendo, and they could pursue the options of online Pokemon card battles further. Imagine Pokemon cards literally coming to life thanks to the 3DS's augmented reality feature. Players would be able to battle each other, and possibly others online, with real live Pokemon. That's a pretty cool idea, and surely this news helps make up for the lack of a true Pokemon title on the Wii.
'Pokemon Trainer Challenge' will launch this April, and all that is required of Pokemon fans to participate is to ensure that they have created a free account — although, some prior knowledge to the Pokemon TCG rules and a little bit of strategy may be a pretty good idea.
Source: Pokemon Official Website