The Pokémon franchise has captured our hearts and imagination for nearly 20 years. There have been tons of games, manga, cards, merchandise and more. In fact, it was just last week that the Nintendo 3DS hit, Pokémon Shuffle, was ported over to Android and iOS devices. Now, it seems it won’t be the only Pokémon title making the rounds on our mobile gadgets. The Pokémon Company has revealed a new mobile game titled Pokémon Go, which takes players out into the real world to look for the adorable pocket monsters.
“The day has finally come when Pokémon appear in the real world,” said Pokémon designer Junichi Masuda.
The company behind the famed series announced their collaboration with Niantic Inc.–the Google developer responsible for an AR game called Ingress–and Nintendo, on the project they’ve been developing for the past few years. As indicated in the video at the top of the page, the game will encourage fans to search their own neighborhoods and environments for digital Pokémon. You’ll not only be able to catch the cuddly creatures, but will also be able to trade and battle in the real world, thanks to the application’s ability to utilize location information.
“Our challenge was to develop a great game for smart phone devices that expressed the core values of Pokémon,” said Tsunekazu Ishihara, president and CEO of The Pokémon Company. “Pokémon GO is the answer to that challenge.”
The idea is an ambitious one to say the least. The company also announced a special bluetooth device (above) called the Pokémon GO Plus, which enhances the experience by flashing and vibrating when Pokémon are near, as well as by allowing the player to perform simple actions like catching a creature at the push of a button. The aim with this peripheral is to allow fans to explore nature without needing to look down at a phone the entire time.
Interestingly, Masuda hinted, “Im thinking about how this game will connect with titles in the main series of Pokémon games.” I’m definitely curious to know what he means by that.
Pokémon Go will be launching on both Android and iOS in 2016. Are you ready to catch ’em all?