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Pokemon Home Should Offer More to Fans After Pokemon Bank Closes

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  • Posted on 24th Sep, 2022 20:39 PM

Pokemon Bank is getting a free use period after the Nintendo eShop closes, but Pokemon Home isn't as in-depth for the fans that need to use it.

p>Pokemon's slogan has always been "gotta catch 'em all," encouraging players to collect every single one of the series' curious creatures. As the series grew, so did the number of Pokemon, to the extent many fans consider having a completed Pokedex an impossible task. Even still, fans kept collecting and catching, and that led to the demand for a place where players could store every monster they've caught.

The latest way for fans to store and transfer the monsters across games has been through Pokemon Bank for the 3DS titles, and Pokemon Home as the hub for recent games including Sword and Shield and Pokemon GO. However, Pokemon Bank is now set to close sometime in 2023, which means many players will be using it to get their favorite creatures into the current generation before that chance is gone forever. Pokemon Home currently doesn't have the features to handle transferring monsters on its own.

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Pokemon Bank Becoming Unavailable

Nintendo announced that sometime in March 2023, the Nintendo 3DS eShop will be shut down alongside the Wii U storefront. This means when it closes, Pokemon Bank will no longer be available to download. The Pokemon Company announced afterward that the Pokemon Cloud service would become free to use, provided fans download the application before the eShop shutters.

While the quick announcement to put fans at ease was nice, The Pokemon Company didn't clarify how long the service would continue after the eShop's closure. There's a chance it may remain open for as long as the Nintendo 3DS's Wi-Fi services run, but there's no concrete evidence. Even as Pokemon Bank can be used at no cost after the shutdown, there's no telling on how long the service will be around. Without Pokemon Bank to bridge the gap, older Pokemon titles before Let's Go, Pikachu! and Eevee! will be cut off. Around 49 of the franchise's creatures won't be available to fans, as the only way to obtain them is through these games.

Pokemon Bank's Free Offerings

As Pokemon Bank was designed to help players move Pokemon from DS games to the 3DS, the service gave users a box of free storage to help with the heavy load. Fans could also transfer Pocket Monsters from games like the original Diamond and Pearl to more recent entries like X and Y without paying for the premium plan Bank offered. This meant that for many fans, taking their Pokemon partners with them to the newer regions was painless.

Those who needed more space could pay for the premium features for only $5 a year, allowing them to hold up to 3,000 monsters in Pokemon Bank with no issue. It was a small price to pay to hold that many critters across the eight 3DS titles available. Fans didn't have to worry, as if there was ever a situation where players couldn't pay the yearly fee, they could leave their creatures in the Cloud service's boxes and they would remain there safely. They would be unavailable to move, but they wouldn't be deleted or lost.

Pokemon Home's Paid Transfer

Unlike Pokemon Bank's user-friendly options to assist players in the move from Generation 5 to Generation 6, Pokemon Home has much less to offer. It may use the same free box system as its predecessor, but the most tricky thing about the service is that transferring from the 3DS games to Home isn't free. Fans need to pay in order to bring the monsters kept in Pokemon Bank to the next generation, which has made plenty of loyal players shell out.

Over the next year and beyond, many fans will be rushing between titles to transfer their favorite long-term partners and complete full National Pokedex sets before they potentially lose them forever. The way Pokemon Home operates makes the process into a bottleneck, as the lack of being able to transfer Pocket Monsters over without paying will lead to some fans being unable or willing to move their treasured creatures.

Thankfully, there are workarounds for fans who don't want to pay the $15 yearly fee with Pokemon Home. The cheapest premium plan the service offers is only $3 for one month of service. For those who want to make sure their favorite Pokemon make it to the next set of games, they can pay for the one month of service, transfer their creatures, and then cancel the subscription when it runs out. The creatures deposited will remain in Pokemon Home safely, just with a tag saying they're inaccessible until the player pays for another month.

This shouldn't be the only method players have, as many fans disagree with the idea of needing to pay extra to keep Pokemon across the franchise's many releases. If Game Freak wishes to help fans keep their former partners across games, they'll need to make the process of switching from one console to the next easier on players. Handling this problem should be in the studio's best interests before Pokemon Bank closes for good.

Pokemon Home is available now on Nintendo Switch.

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