This article comes from Den of Geek UK.
The Pokémon franchise is in rude health at the moment, with the Detective Pikachu movie faring well at the box office and the Sword and Shield RPG games looming tantalizingly on the horizon. But if you’ve already seen the movie and can’t wait for those games to come out, you might want to turn your attention to some alternative Pokémon experiences. How about some free Pokémon games, for instance?
You can’t argue with a freebie, after all. If you can’t afford a console game or just fancy taking part in some inexpensive fun, you’ve come to the right place. All you need is a smartphone with enough storage space to hold some new software. And if you can meet those two requirements, the Pokémon franchise has plenty to offer.
Also, further to the games that we’re about to list, there are two more Pokémon mobile games due to release soon: Pokémon Rumble Rush is being worked on by Ambrella, while the developers at DeNA are beavering away on a separate upcoming title. We’ll have to give this article an update once those games are released.
Let’s get cracking, then. Here are seven free Pokémon games that you can play right now…
Still going strong, almost three years on from its world-conquering launch, Pokémon Go is well worth picking up. Since those early days, a lot of kinks have been ironed out, with those frustrating crashes now being a thing of the past. And, as an added bonus, heaps of new features have been added over the years, too.
As well as finding and catching Pokémon, with the option of Augmented Reality graphics, you can now also trade with your chums, send gifts, and partake in battles and raids. Loads more Pokémon have been added to the game since launch as well, and there are regular events and challenges to keep you engaged.
Pokémon TCG Online
The digital version of Pokémon: The Trading Card Game, Pokémon TCG Online arrived on the scene as a browser-only experience in 2011 before launching as an app for iPad and Android. Developed by Dire Wolf Digital, the game has something to offer for both seasoned players of the card game and newcomers that just want to have a go.
If you’re building a real-life collection of cards, you can scan the “code card” that comes with each pack to add your actual possessions to your digital deck, making TCG Online an ideal way to practice tactics. If you don’t have any real cards and still want to dive in, try out the “Trainer Challenge” mode that lets you choose from pre-made decks to compete against the PC.
Developed by Game Freak (which also handles the main RPG franchise), Pokémon Quest is an action-adventure game that splices together the Pokémon you know and love with a cutesy, Minecraft-esque visual style. It’s available on mobile and Nintendo Switch, it’s free to start, and it can get quite addictive.
Set in a hitherto-unmentioned locale called Tumblecube Island and starring familiar critters from the Pokémon Red and Blue games, this title tasks the player with exploring habitats, maintaining a base camp, befriending Pokémon, and taking part in simple, tap-happy battles. It may not have the depth of those massive RPG experiences that Game Freak is famous for, but it’s still a nice way to spend a few hours.
Pokémon Duel launched in Japan in 2016 and everywhere else in 2017, pitting players against one another (or against the PC) in a digital board game. It’s inspired by the Pokémon Trading Figure Game and developed by Heroz and you can nab it for free on iOS and Android mobile devices.
The game is played between two people, each of whom selects six Pokémon figures with which to do battle. The aim is to get from one side of the board to the other, without having your team wiped out in battles along the way. The game has been downloaded over 40 million times, so you shouldn’t be short of people to battle against.
Aimed at younger children, Pokémon Camp is available on iOS and Android devices, and it comes to direct us from The Pokémon Company. It’s an ideal way to introduce kids to the wonders of Pokémon, especially if they’re too little to jump into Let’s Go Pikachu and Let’s Go Eevee, with its super simple graphics and not-too-demanding tasks.
Young trainers are invited to travel to Pokémon Camp, where NPC characters dubbed “camp counselors” will guide them through such activities as Poké Ball Throw and Find the Pokémon. The game features Pokémon from the original generation and the Aloan region from Sun and Moon, allowing players to collect cute pins as they go.
Pokémon Shuffle was born as a freebie on the Nintendo 3DS and now you can get it on mobile as well. It’s kind of a Pokémon version of Candy Crush where you need to match three or more of the adorable blighters in order to defeat them.
The game is made in the freemium mold, meaning that you only get a certain amount of tries before you have to either wait for more lives or pay cash money to get them quicker. You’ll want to make every move count, then, because nobody likes waiting or paying for things. (Right?)
Perhaps the silliest free Pokémon game of the bunch, Magikarp Jump puts the least useful Pokémon of all time in the spotlight for a slice of unexpected fun. All your Magikarp can do is jump (hence the title), but you can still train it up and feed it to help it jump higher.
This makes for a nice and simple gameplay experience, which tasks you with tapping on the screen at various points to assist your Magikarp in its quest to reach greater heights. Keep your eyes peeled for cameo appearances from other Pokémon that want to help you out and don’t forget that every Magikarp has a pretty awesome evolution to look forward to. Happy jumping!