Pokemon Home will have two pricing options when it is released in February 2020, plus there will be some differences between the smartphone and Nintendo Switch versions.
A free version of Pokemon Home will be available to download but more features can be unlocked by buying into the Premium Plan. Available on both smartphones and Switch, the Premium Plan costs $2.99 (£2.69 on Switch / £2.99 on smartphones) for one month, $4.99 ($4.49 on Switch / £4.99 on smartphones) for three months, or $15.99 (£14.49 on Switch / £15.99 on smartphones) for 12 months.
Many of the functions made available or given increased capacity with Premium Plan relate to trading Pokemon, so it’s especially useful if you’re looking to trade in larger quantities or want to trade for specific Pokemon.
Buying into the Premium Plan lets you move Pokemon from Pokemon Bank on 3DS. It also lets you host Room Trades, where you can invite friends to trade, not just participate in them. You’ll also have access to the Judge function – which allows you to check how strong a Pokemon is before trading for it.
Premium also increases the number of Pokemon you can deposit in the National Pokedex from 30 to 6,000. You’ll also be able to put 10 Pokemon in the Wonder Box to trade with people around the world, rather than just three. Premium means you place three Pokemon in the Global Trade System – where you can specify which Pokemon to trade and receive – rather than just one.
Both the free and Premium versions let you trade with friends directly once you’ve added them to your friend list on Pokemon Home.
The other differences outlined are between the smartphone and Switch versions of Pokemon Home. The smartphone version won’t let you move Pokemon from Let’s Go, Pikachu!, Let’s Go, Eevee!, and Pokemon Sword or Shield – which makes sense as they’re Switch games.
Nor will the smartphone version let you exchange Pokemon Home Points for Battle Points. You accumulate Pokemon Home Points by depositing Pokemon in the National Pokedex. Battle Points are used in the core games in the series on Switch, so the limitation makes sense.
As to what the Switch version is missing, it won’t let you see Battle Data for Pokemon Sword and Shield, receive Mystery Gifts, check news, or trade Pokemon. The Switch version of Pokemon Home is geared more towards moving Pokemon from the Switch games to the app.
It’s also been announced that Pokemon Home won’t be compatible with Pokemon Go at launch but that is being developed, so expect it in the future.
Gigantamax Pokemon in Sword and Shield
If you don’t know, Pokemon Home is designed as a one-stop shop for all your Pokemon storage and trading needs. It brings together Pokemon games across Nintendo platforms and smartphones. It was announced in 2019 as an evolution of Pokemon Bank as a more modern way to organise Pokemon across games and platforms.
Pokemon Sleep was also announced at the time but not much has been heard about it since. Sleep is intended as a Pokemon Go for when you sleep, tracking and rewarding your sleep hours with new Pokemon, and will be coming to smartphones one day.
Chris Priestman is a freelancer who writes news for IGN. Follow him on Twitter.