We’ve been told that Nintendo will be releasing its first smartphone and tablet games before the end of 2015. We’ve also been told that these games are being created in partnership with DeNA. If today’s announcement of Pokémon GO results in their first mobile release, neither of those preceding statements will be 100% true — but it’s hard to care when the game looks this good.
In partnership with Niantic (formerly Google-owned Niantic Labs, but now independent and rebranded), Nintendo has just unveiled an augmented reality game about catching, trading, and battling Pokemon in real life.
Let that sink in for a minute.
The trailer above seems more “artist conception” than actual gameplay, but it’s the sort of thing that sounds so brilliant on paper that you can’t help but want to see it succeed. And considering Niantic is the team responsible for Ingress — aka the only AR game that could be called a resounding success — they seem to have found the right partner to execute their vision.
In addition to the app, Nintendo will be manufacturing an optional accessory called ‘Pokémon GO Plus’ which will be a bluetooth device that notifies players of “nearby events (such as Pokémon in the vicinity) with flashes and vibrations, and the ability to catch them with the press of a button,” according to today’s press release.
Pokemon game director Junichi Masuda (of GAME FREAK) will also be contributing to the project. Expect Pokémon GO to arrive on iOS and Android as a free download sometime in 2016.