Niantic Labs, best known for their widely popular augmented reality mobile game, Pokémon Go, just announced that they're going to work together with Nintendo to create multiple brand-new augmented reality titles based on existing Nintendo franchises.
Be Prepared to See More AR Games
The joint partnership will reportedly see Niantic work their magic to create multiple AR titles for Nintendo. The first of which is a new AR game based on the real-time strategy and puzzle video game series, Pikmin, and it's set to release sometime later this year.
The Pikmin franchise is one of Nintendo's lesser-known series. It was developed by Shigeru Miyamoto, the creator of Nintendo's most popular franchise, Mario. The series stars cute and colorful plant-like creatures that players can control.
The upcoming AR game based on Pikmin will reportedly see these creatures appear in the real world via AR. In a similar manner to Pokémon Go, the game will help "encourage walking and make the activity more enjoyable," as explained by Niantic Labs in their announcement.
We're overjoyed to make new memories with our partners at @Nintendo and YOU! ? Imagine exploring the world through the wonder of AR and alongside all of your pals - including your new #Pikmin friends! Learn more about our partnership here: https://t.co/TiQ10S8kMR pic.twitter.com/YUpp4P33NA
— Niantic, Inc. (@NianticLabs) March 23, 2021
This is not the first time that Niantic Labs and Nintendo have worked together.
As we mentioned earlier, Niantic made a name for themselves with Pokémon Go. The said AR game, which was released in 2016, was made in collaboration with The Pokémon Company. Nintendo is a part-owner of that company.
Niantic has also had a hand in several AR titles released since making Pokémon Go. Other new AR games that they've worked with based on popular licenses include Settler of Catan and Harry Potter: Wizards Unite. However, the former has yet to be released.
Speaking of, Niantic also has another game in development in Endgame: Proving Ground.
With that said, we've yet to receive additional gameplay details and release date. However, we do know that it will release this 2021, as we've already mentioned. In addition to this, we can expect the game to play similarly to Pokémon Go if we're going by their announcement.
What's interesting here is the timing of the announcement and the release.
The COVID-19 pandemic is still forcing players to stay indoors in many parts of the world. It will be interesting to see how they find a way to work around this if and when the game releases and the world still hasn't fully recovered yet.