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Pokémon Global Link is going offline, get a free Munna before it goes

You’ll still to be able to trade and battle, though

Pokemon Sun and Moon Nintendo/The Pokémon Company
Nicole Carpenter is a senior reporter specializing in investigative features about labor issues in the game industry, as well as the business and culture of games.

The Pokémon Company has moved on to Pokémon Sword and Shield, and it’s leaving some of its older generations’ online systems behind. Pokémon Global Link service will shut off on Feb. 24, 2020, the company announced on Monday.

Once the Pokémon Global Link has been shut down, players will no longer have access to any Sun and Moon features that require a Pokémon Global Link connection. This extends to Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, too. This doesn’t mean that all online functionality will be retired, though — Sun, Moon, Ultra Sun, and Ultra Moon players will still be able to battle and trade with in other individually, but there’s no more online competitions or Rating Battles.

Sword and Shield will have similar features to the Rating Battles and online competitions from Sun and Moon, but these will be accessible through the Nintendo Switch; a separate Pokémon Global Link website isn’t necessary. The first Sword and Shield online competition is scheduled for Dec. 6.

Pokémon Global Link went online in 2010 with Pokémon Black and White. First, it was used to enter the Pokémon Dream World, which let players catch Pokémon from outside the Unova region. Between each generation of Pokémon games, The Pokémon Company closed the site to revamp the system for the new games — but it always came back for the next generation.

To celebrate the past nine years of Pokémon Global Link, The Pokémon Company is passing out Munna — a callback to Black and White. To access Pokémon Global Link, players needed an item called Dream Mist, which was acquired from a Munna. To get the celebratory Munna, players need to get a code from Pokémon Global Link. It’s only available until the shutoff date in February.

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