It appears the Pokémon Company and Game Freak are continuing to expand the Pokémon franchise into other gaming platforms, as two new Pokémon games have launched exclusively on Facebook Gaming. The games, Pokémon Tower Battle and Pokémon Medallion Battle, were built using Facebook’s Instant Games platform. So far only Pokémon Tower Battle is available worldwide, while Pokémon Medallion Battle is currently only available in the Philippines.
Developed by Bombay Play, Pokémon Tower Battle bears resemblance to Tetris, as two players take turns stacking Pokémon that fall from the sky onto each other, on a small platform. The first player to knock over the tower, or whose Pokémon falls off the platform, loses. Though the game seems straightforward, the press release warns: “the strategic choices in where and how players stack Pokémon will determine the true Tower Battle masters.” Additionally, playing the game over time will give players the chance to “discover, catch and level-up rare Pokémon.”
Because Pokémon Medallion Battle is still only available in the Philippines less is known about its gameplay, but it is planned to release in more countries soon. It’s currently in “soft-launch” mode, according to a Facebook rep; Pokémon Tower Battle also originally had a soft-launch in the Philippines before releasing worldwide. Developed by GCTurbo, Pokémon Medallion Battle is a digital card battle and strategy game. Players collect Pokémon medallions to evolve and battle with. New Pokémon will be introduced every month for players to discover, to continue improving their decks.
Pokémon Company CEO Tsunekazu Ishihara is optimistic about the new Facebook exclusives, as he told Variety: “Launching these games through Facebook will allow people all over the world to experience Pokémon in digital form, and we are especially thrilled to collaborate with Facebook Gaming in enabling new audiences to enjoy Pokémon games online.”
Facebook has been steadily increasing its participation in the gaming industry. Last month, it acquired Beat Games, the studio behind the VR rhythm game Beat Saber. According to Variety, Facebook has reported over 700 million users playing games, watching gaming videos, or engaging in gaming groups on the social media site.