Battle incoming!

A massive helping of Pokémon GO information has arrived on the web thanks to first-hand reports from players involved in the Beta field test.

The most interesting piece of info is that battles occur in real time and are not turn-based like they are in the mainline Pokémon games. It's worth pointing out that this is based on the gym training portion of the game, but we'd imagine it's the same in the main game.

There's a lot to get through here, so we've summed up some of the key points regarding combat in the following list:

  • To attack, you either tap (for a quick attack) or hold down your finger on the screen (for the charge attack)
  • A "stamina bar" is displayed underneath your HP bar and appears to be broken in two halves. It refills about 20 percent per second, and appears to be boosted when you take a hit. A long-press charge move consumes around 50% of your stamina
  • Incoming attacks are shown via a red crosshair that closes in on your Pokémon, giving you the chance to dodge the blow. To dodge you swipe left or right on the screen. Skillful dodging can actually avoid the attack and place you behind the enemy Pokémon
  • Area of Effect attacks seem to hit even when a Pokémon dodges
  • Just like other games in the series, Pokémon type has an impact on damage. There are "It's not very effective" and "super effective" messages which pop up depending on what type of attack you're using and the type of the Pokémon you've attacking
  • Damage taken during training battles - and presumably standard battles as well - persists after the contest is over, so you need to heal up after each fight

Another interesting piece of information relates to the way the game looks. Given that Ingress developer Niantic is in charge, many feared that the trademark Pokémon charm would be lost, but eyewitness reports seem to indicate that Pokémon GO is looking pretty sweet indeed - and "nothing like Ingress":

I'll just say this, though: it looks freaking fun. Nothing like Ingress. Much more like the 'encounter' screen but with the camera higher set and behind a Pokemon. You see each Pokemon's HP in a bar. There is a second bar, divided into two on the 'computer player pokemon' when training. We're still working out what's happening with that. But the attacks fly like hail. We're seeing both the 'quick' and the charge move. The animations are cool. The pokemon can jump/dodge and it appears to avoid some of the damage from the attack. It's crazy. And colorful. And gloriously not like Ingress.

It was recently revealed that the Beta test is coming to Australia and New Zealand. We already know that when the final product launches, it will hit Japan, North America and Europe first. Are you excited? Let us know.