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Pokemon X and Y's online features feel like a true evolution

Bob Mackey

Presiding over an audience of devoted Pokemon fans during an E3 2013 roundtable session, Tsunekazu Ishihara and Junichi Masuda of The Pokemon Company dropped some interesting new facts about the upcoming Pokemon X and Y, releasing October 12 for the 3DS. The games' new online functionality, known as the Player Search System (or P.S.S.), taps into the power of the 3DS by allowing players to switch between local wireless communication and full-fledged Internet connectivity with the push of a button.

During play, the bottom screen of the 3DS will display confirmed friends fully integrated with the 3DS' Friend List (meaning friends you add before the game's release will appear there) as well as people in the area who happen to be playing. Battling someone from the latter group will add them to an acquaintances list, and after a few battles, X and Y will establish a friendship between the two players. True to the series' focus on multiplayer from its very first generation, X and Y has made it easier than ever to smash your pocket monsters into friends' far and wide.

One important question, though, left some lingering disappointment in the room: when asked if previous generations' Pokemon can be imported into X and Y, Masuda could only offer "we're working on it," citing the problems in communicating data between the DS and 3DS. Hopefully, you won't have to take your current stable of Pokemon out behind the woodshed come October.

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