first_imgThe allure of Pokémon is not only catching all the monsters, but arranging them for battle with other trainers in the game.Way back when Pokémon and Nintendo were synonymous in North America, the N64 was introduced to something called the “Transfer Pak” that allowed you to move the Pokémon you had captured in Red, Blue, and Yellow to Pokémon Stadium on the N64 where you could fight them against the computer or your friend who had also bought Pokémon Red, Blue,or Yellow and a Transfer Pak. As far as something like Pokémon existing in the reality around the player, that’s what the cutting edge of Pokémon looked like fifteen years ago.Now, it looks like The Pokémon Company is finally bringing the collectable and fightable pocket monsters to app-based mobile gameplay in a real way. Sometime next year, an Android and iOS app called Pokémon Go will be released to a public that has waited decades to seek out Pokémon and trainers in the world around them — and watch them battle through an in-phone alternate reality application.The new app will be produced by Niantic Labs, the company that created the app-based ARG (alternate reality game) Ingress for Google before separating from the search engine giant when the whole Alphabet thing happened. Apparently, Niantic’s new Google-free existence will involve mapping the many varieties of Pokémon onto a virtual map so you can walk around your city and happen across a Snorlax.Niantic and The Pokémon Company realize that the actual technology when we get to see it in 2016 will likely look something like your normal AR app.So instead of pushing that, they have smartly decided to drill into every Pokémon fan’s innermost desires to have spent all our training time on something real and tangible by producing this announcement ad that is basically the coolest you can make geocaching Pokémon look.Seriously, who doesn’t want to help fight Mewtwo in Times Square?As to how the app will really work, we can only guess. The plastic Poké Ball dongle you see in the video is a real thing called Pokémon Go Plus, Nintendo’s contribution to the endeavor. It will connect with Bluetooth to your app and alert you when something in-game is happening nearby. If you pass by a Charmander on the way to work, let’s say, and aren’t looking at your phone, the dongle will light up and vibrate. The Pokémon Go Plus also will have the capability of capturing Pokémon somehow, when the app is released.Otherwise, the functionality of the app is basically what is shows in the video. You’ll be able to track, collect, trade and fight your Pokémon in an AR environment. For Ingress, the other ARG that Niantic Labs has worked on, there’s a small MMO element for big events like the Mewtwo showdown in the teaser. In Ingress you would have to get within 40 meters of a “portal” to claim it for your team, and these portals could be locations of businesses who have paid to advertise in-app. The thought is that shops might get more business from an increase in game-related foot traffic. For special events, multiple portals would pop up in major cities across the world leading factions on a rush to claim more for their side. There’s an Ingress event scheduled for October of this year, and though past events have taken place in such diverse locations as Minneapolis, Minnesota to Kyoto Japan, this one’s epicenter is still unknown.Basically, you might happen across a Pikachu in the alley next to the Subway sandwich shop downtown and get an alert that everyone in Boise, Idaho is fending off an invasion of Geodudes.Pokémon Go Plus doesn’t have a final price or release date, but we know the app will come out in 2016 for Andorid and iOS, and will be free-to-play with in-app purchases.last_img read more

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