Nintendo and Niantic have jointly revealed a new partnership that aims to develop new Pokemon Go-style mobile titles, with the first being set in the Pikmin franchise.
Following the unprecedented success of Pokemon Go, Nintendo is once again teaming up with Niantic in a big way. The augmented reality (AR) developers are set to create a number of new apps that feature Nintendo’s most iconic characters.
The first of these new projects is a mobile game set in the Pikmin franchise. This new entry appears to be familiar to Pokemon Go in that gameplay activities are “designed to encourage walking.”
Utilizing Niantic’s AR technology, the upcoming release aims to make walking “more enjoyable” in the same way that the 2016 Pokemon release did for Nintendo fans around the world.
What would it be like to have a more fun walking experience surrounded by #Pikmin? In a new mobile app developed by @NianticLabs and Nintendo coming later in 2021, explore the real world and create memories with your Pikmin friends.
— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) March 23, 2021
“We’re looking forward to shaping the future of AR together,” Niantic CEO John Hanke said in the announcement. Together, the gaming juggernauts will bring “beloved game characters to life for mobile players.”
While specific details on the first title are scarce, the announcement paints it in a similar light to Pokemon Go. Through the use of AR technology, players will be able to “experience the world as if Pikmin are secretly living around us,” Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto said.
“Our mission is to provide people a new experience that’s different from traditional games. We hope that the Pikmin and this app will become a partner in your life.”
A single accompanying image in the announcement shows Pikmin out in the real world as a player walks along a footpath. No different from Pokemon Go, venturing outside is a key emphasis for future Nintendo and Niantic projects.
Upon Pokemon Go’s release in 2016, it rapidly became a global phenomenon. With more than 500 million downloads in its first year on the market, it quickly shot to the top of the mobile gaming charts. By the end of 2020, the AR title has reportedly grossed more than $6 billion in revenue.
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Pikmin is the first focus as part of the collaboration and is set to launch globally in 2021. However, this is just the beginning of a “series of apps” that the two companies will develop. From Mario to Animal Crossing, the possibilities are wide open for future mobile projects.
Eager Nintendo fans can register now for early access to the untitled app.