“A FREE Pokemon game?” I hear you cry. “Don’t make me laugh like a Lickitung!”

But it’s true!

Nintendo and their partners in crime over at The Pokemon Company International yesterday released a brand spanking new Pokemon game for the Nintendo 3DS family. Titled Pokemon Shuffle, it’s available to download from the Nintendo eShop right now for absolutely free.

A Pokemon puzzle game, Pokemon Shuffle challenges players to Catch ’em all! using a unique, card-based attack system to wear down wild Pokemon before you toss that iconic Pokeball. Matching 3 Pokemon in a line will allow you to initiate an attack, and after capturing your target, will allow you to progress through the numerous and different stages ahead. Check out some of the digital cards below.

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But wait! Don’t go rushing in all gungho just yet – heed my warning and beware the hearts!

Yes, to spice things up a bit each player receives 5 hearts upon starting the game. These hearts diminish for every stage that you play – one for each level you compete in – and once you run out you’ll have to play the waiting game until another replenishes. However, if you’re itching to continue catching ’em all and hate to wait head over to the Nintendo eShop again, where players can purchase jewels (.89p each) with their eShop balance which can then be traded for in-game items including hearts to continue, coins to buy things, and a whole host of other Poke-benefits.

With the promise of more free downloadable stages to be released as the year goes on and connectivity features utilising StreetPass, where players can swap play records and attempt to earn more jewels, what are you waiting for? There’s never been a better time to don the red and white cap, blue shirt and throwback denim trousers!