Considering how popular the match-3 puzzle games are on the iOS and Android, it was only a matter of time before “Pokemon Shuffle” would be announced for mobile devices. Originally a free-to-play downloadable title for the Nintendo 3DS, “Pokemon Shuffle” is similar to a typical match-3 game, with the added benefit of using, catching and battling Pokemon with the match-3 system. It will now be called "Pokemon Shuffle Mobile" when it comes to the iTunes App Store and Google Play.
Ever since its January release, “Pokemon Shuffle” has been a big hit despite not doing much to change the match-3 game formula, showing how popular and powerful the Pokemon brand has proved to be. GameSpot reported that the game has been downloaded 4.5 million times on the Nintendo 3DS, which led to the decision to bring the Pokemon spinoff game to other mobile devices.
Despite not adding too much to the match-3 genre, “Pokemon Shuffle” does have the basic elements of a Pokemon game that fans of the series have gone crazy for. Players can form teams of the Pokemon they’ve caught, train them through battles and even evolve them to their most powerful level. The game also adds the rock-paper-scissors weakness system from various Pokemon games, so fire beats grass, thunder beats water and fans know the rest.
Since the Pokemon series is under Nintendo, some may have gotten overexcited and thought that this would be the first mobile game to officially be developed, but that’s not the case with “Pokemon Shuffle.” According to a report from Game Informer, the Pokemon Company always has had some sort of presence in mobile devices, like the “Pokemon Trading Card Game” and the app that streams episodes of the popular Pokemon anime. “Pokemon Shuffle” is merely another addition to that and isn’t the first step forward in Nintendo’s mobile plans.
Match-3 games have always been popular on both iOS and Android devices, particularly “Bejeweled” and “Candy Crush.” Occasionally, a few match-3 games break the mold and add role playing game elements like the “Puzzle Quest” series, with one iteration of the series, “Marvel Puzzle Quest,” proving to be incredibly popular thanks to the presence of Marvel superheroes.
An official release date for “Pokemon Shuffle Mobile” hasn’t been revealed yet, though the trailer below did state that the game would come “soon.” The match-3 game is expected to hit both iOS and Android devices, which anyone can download since it’s a free-to-play title.