The Latest Pokemon Go Update: Buddy Pokemon!

It’s been a wait, but it’s finally here! Niantic’s latest Pokemon Go update adds the new Buddy Pokemon feature, in which you get to have one of your Pokemon follow you around! The update also prepares the app for the upcoming Pokemon Go Plus device, and fixes a few bugs here and there.

“Trainers will now be able to choose one of their Pokémon to be their buddy. A Trainer can earn Candy for their Buddy Pokémon by walking a certain distance.”


It is a really cool feature which really helps those who are trying to evolve their favorites. Right off the bat, I had to set Pikachu as my buddy; who else could resist that cute little ball of electrical fluff? Plus, I’ve heard rumors that if you walk around with it long enough, it might ride on your shoulder in homage to a particular Pokemon Trainer 😛

Anyways, as soon as I added him as my buddy, I set out to walk…


How it Works

To set up a buddy, simply tap on your profile picture in the bottom left corner of the screen. Open up your settings to reveal a new button, aptly named “Buddy”. And just like that, you can choose from all of your Pokemon and have one follow you around. It’s unfortunate that they don’t visibly follow you around in-game; it’d be a great touch. Once you start walking, the meter slowly fills…


As you can see above, I will have to walk my Pikachu for about 1 km before I get a Pikachu candy. This happens automatically whilst playing, much like the Eggs you hatch. Each Pokemon has a specific number of kilometers that must be accrued in order to obtain a candy, ranging from 1 km all the way to 5 km. Obviously, the rare and powerful Pokemon will need to walk around a lot longer in order to claim a candy, but it’s a fair balance

My Final Thoughts

There is next to no Magikarp anywhere near my home. I usually get them once in a blue moon. But with this new buddy feature, I will be able to set Magikarp as my buddy, collecting candies to work towards evolving him into Gyarados. Sure, it’ll take a lot longer than the other ones, but dammit I want that fish so badly! 😀

That’s the trick with this new buddy feature. As Pokemon spawn with varying levels of rarity around the world, it’s hard to really tell whether or not you’re going to find another one. Selecting the right buddy will allow you to get candies that you normally don’t get very often. It’s sort of pointless to have a Pidgey as your buddy, in other words, so save that special spot for your favorite!

With the Pokemon Go Plus fast approaching, I’m curious to see if the device could possibly open up the chance of logging steps or kilometers, like a pedometer or a Fitbit. If so, it’d be a great way to continue to amass candies without having the game always running.

What are your thoughts? I’d love to hear them! Feel free to leave a comment down below; I always appreciate the feedback 🙂

I wish you all the best moving forward, and happy training!

~ Ken

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