Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet , the latest dual entry in developer Game Freak’s iconic series, aren’t set to hit retail and digital retail outlets until Nov. 18. But even with a week to go (as of this article), the game won’t ship finished. When you buy the game, you’ll need to update it immediately if you want the full Scarlet and Violet experience.
As this update is the game’s first, it goes by the very simple version 1.0.1. The big news with this update is it’s required to experience online play , a major component of Scarlet and Violet. If you choose to skip the update (understandable, since you want to enjoy the $60 game you just bought) you’ll still be able to play the main game, but any online functionality will be unavailable.
According to Nintendo, online play is required for a bunch of Scarlet and Violet’s features. You can participate in Tera Raid Battle events, in which four players take on one “Terrastallized” Pokémon . You can team up with three other players via the game’s multiplayer feature to explore Paldea together. Of course, you can also go head-to-head with players around the world via Battle Stadium, just as you have been in games past, although ranked battles and official online competitions won’t be available until after Pokémon’s launch. Plus, you can claim a Pikachu as a special gift for buying the game early from the Mystery Gift feature.
Some of these features don’t require a Nintendo Switch Online plan to take advantage of, either. Only the online multiplayer and Battle Stadium require the paid subscription. To access the other online play features, you simply need to connect your profile to a Nintendo Account, and keep your Switch connected to internet, of course. Nintendo says you will need 1GB of storage free on your console in order to install the update.