F2P Pokémon Shuffle Now Available on 3DS eShop

Pokemon Shuffle Nintendo 3DS

Ahead of the regular eShop update tomorrow afternoon, Pokémon Shuffle has snuck its way onto the 3DS for your download. This is momentous as it marks the Pokémon’s first stab at free-to-play on a Nintendo platform (iOS notwithstanding). It is free to download, but you should be aware of the game’s “hidden costs”.

Pokémon Shuffle is similar in game play to last year’s Pokémon Battle Trozei. The key difference being that the latter has an upfront cost. So, what do you do in a stage of Pokémon Shuffle? Depending on how many moves it takes to finish, you have a high chance of capturing a Pokémon. You’ll need those Pokémon too, for they may have typing and abilities to aid you in later stages of the game.

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In Pokémon Shuffle, you start with 5 hearts, or turns to play on a stage. As you play a stage, that costs a heart, and when you run out of hearts, that’s when your wallet begins its siren’s magic call.

If you pay $0.99, you’ll get one heart, or can scale up to $4.99 for 6, $8.99 for 12, $24.99 for 35, or a full $47.99 for 75 hearts. If you think that’s diabolical pricing, you can wait for the in-game timer to run out for one heart to replenish.

Alternatively, there are gems for currency you unlock while playing. Those gems can be redeemed for hearts or for coins, which can be used to purchase stronger Pokeballs (such as Great Balls). Meanwhile, later stages may shake things up, and special downloads may be live for a limited time (as with a Mew stage now available until March 9th).

So in short, if you have any experience with Candy Crush Saga, Pokémon Shuffle is just for you. It’s available now for free, but if you choose to play, be careful how you spend your money (just saying). Let us know what you think in the comments.

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About The Author

Editor-in-Chief (Former)

A man with a plan. My favorite video game franchise is Pokemon, but his favorite video game is Resident Evil 4. I can also tell you trivial cartoon factoids.