Highly/madly/frantically anticipated mobile game, Pokemon GO, has everyone in a tizzy as it slowly is rearing its head in preview across the US. Having previously premiered Beta of the game in Japan, New Zeland, and Australia, the game has already been very well received in its early stages. Now, major gaming journalist sites, such as Verge, have the pleasure of being treated to a sneak peek at the game–and even better, they are sharing the insight with us.
A collaborative production between Niantic Labs and the powerhouse Pokemon Company. The game will be available for everyone’s smart phones, and enables players to battle and catch Pokemon on the go, everywhere they go, and works off of location based Ingress relating to the real-world. Needless to say, fans were ecstatic over the idea.
During an interview and demonstration in scenic San Francisco, Niantic CEO John Hanke states to Verge interviewers:
We know that dynamic from the Ingress experience works really well, drives a real-world social dynamic. It’s something you can do, like seeing a movie, going to a baseball game, going to the park. It’s something you can do with your friends, and go outside.
He continued by pointing out that Pokemon GO was not meant to closely resemble traditional Gameboy/DS Pokemon games–because we could always simply (though not wholly recommended) download a port and play that way. Instead the game is meant to be a portal to interact not only with the imaginary, wonderful world of Pokemon, but also with your surroundings, and the uniqueness of your own city–much like Snapchat’s unique Geo filters. Hanke explains:
The key points in Pokémon Go are built around historical places, museums, a fountain in your park…[and] help people discover the awesome stuff in your town…
The devs made sure that new players wouldn’t be dissuaded or pit unfairly against experienced players. However, there is the choice to seek out players your level, or find a challenge at a gym, for players looking to sharpen their skills. Players will be able to take the game with them on the go through a wearable wristband, however any AR experience with glasses–or anything resembling the visors seen in popular VR models–is not in the immediate future, with Hanke stating:
…until we have awesome sunglasses giving us an augmented reality experience. I think we’ll get there, but it will be a few years.
Keep your eyes peeled, Pokemon Trainers!