Parents and Pokemon fans everywhere brace yourselves: the first Pokemon role-playing games for Nintendo's popular Switch console have been announced. And perhaps unsurprisingly, they are taking a big leaf out of the astronomically successful 2016 mobile game Pokemon Go.
Pokemon Let's Go! Pikachu and Pokemon Let's Go! Eevee are set to land just in time for the pre-Christmas shopping rush later this year. From the names themselves to the actual gameplay - and the fact that they will have a crossover function with the Pokemon Go app - the games are clearly designed to capitalise on Go's notable mainstream impact.
Gotta switch em all
Featuring 'couch co-op', i.e. the ability to play side by side with another player in your living room, the Pokemon Let's Go! games will let you interact with Pikachu or Eevee respectively and capture other Pokemon through a system that will seem instantly familar to Go veterans.
If you see a Pokemon roaming in the game world, you can activate a catch screen and attempt to ensare the creature by using the Switch's motion controls to throw Pokeballs at it.
The games will also be compatible with Pokemon Go, with the 151 original creatures apparently able to be transferred between the mobile app and the Switch titles. So if you've acquired lots of Pokemon on your Pokemon Go travels, you can reap the benefits here.
Parents of children may also fear the pester power to buy a new special peripheral controller that will be sold separately to the Let's Go games. The Poke Ball Plus is a device players can use as an extra responsive motion controller for the game. When you catch a Pokemon, it will light up and vibrate. You'll even hear the Pokemon making noises from it.
"Using the Poké Ball Plus, players can bring one of their Pokémon from Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! or Pokémon: Let's Go, Eevee! with them as they explore the real world, giving Trainers the opportunity to spend time with favorite Pokémon even when they're not playing the game," added Nintendo in a statement.
The legacy of Go
Pokemon Go, an augmented reality mobile game that allowed players to catch Pokemon 'in the wild' while out and about, became a pop culture phenomenon in the summer of 2016.
It was downloaded tens of millions of times and helped propel Nintendo to surprise financial profits - though its player base did ultimately shrink dramatically.
Go was credited with encouraging exercise, social interactions and outdoor exploration, but was also criticised by some for putting players in potentially dangerous situations.
An attempt to marry traditional Pokemon role-playing games with Go's tactile and active approach, Pokemon Let's Go proves the augmented reality app's legacy lives on.