Pokémon GO has come a long way since the summer of 2016, which is honestly saying something since the app was heralded that year as a viral success. But now Niantic has released a new and improved “Buddy Pokémon” update that’ll give way to a whole new list of features, including one that trainers have been calling for since Pokémon Yellow first gave us a taste of way back in 1998: an in-game Pokémon tag along.
Better yet, Pokémon GO released the news in a promo ad that will have every 90’s kid doing double-takes:
We’re excited to announce that Trainers and their #PokemonGOBuddy will soon have more ways to connect, interact, and explore the world.
— Pokémon GO (@PokemonGoApp) December 17, 2019
The lack of computers in every room, the wave goodbye as the kids rush out the door completely unsupervised, the iconic Clueless pink feather pen — it all points to 90s, and that’s without mentioning the scattering of base set Pokémon cards and an episode of the original Pokémon anime playing in the background (we see what you did there).
Alas, all good things must come to an end, and it isn’t long before the promo transports viewers back to the present with a good look at 2019’s average Pokémon trainer — only this time, he’s all grown up into a phone-totting Veteran Trainer. The jury’s still out on whether he’s meant to be millennial or Gen-Z, but either way, the final footage of only first generation Pokémon coming out to play really confirm just who this ad was made for.
To find out more about the Buddy Pokémon update coming in 2020, read the official announcement on pokemongolive.com.