Niantic Disables Pokémon GO Battle League Walking Requirement For A Month

Pokemon GO’s Battle League will be easier to play for those who are quarantining themselves and avoiding the spread of the coronavirus, as the game’s developer has announced that some of Battle League’s requirements will be temporarily disabled.

A National State of Emergency has been declared in the U.S. over the coronavirus, COVID-19, and even more drastic measures are in place overseas. Given this risks to health and saftey, it makes sense that a game like Pokemon GO, which encourages players to remain active, would make some adjustments.

Developer Niantic has decided to remove the three-kilometer walking requirement for entering the Pokemon GO Battle League. Now, players can engage in Pokémon battles and earn the rewards from the league even if they’re stuck indoors. Niantic has also lowered the requirement for sending challenges to other players, making it easier to find players to battle with. These measures will be in place for the next thirty days, but they may be extended if Niantic thinks it necessary.

Walking for what amounts to a little under two miles isn’t that hard for most players in the U.S., where there are less restrictions on public gatherings. However, a three-kilometer stroll would be a bit trickier for someone quarantined in Italy, where most cities have been all but shut down in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Similar to other diseases, such as the flu, COVID-19 is difficult to track because it can be present in a person’s body well before they notice any symptoms. Steps by Niantic such as removing Battle League’s walking requirement from Pokémon GO will hopefully reduce contamination — if only slightly.

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