Pokemon Go Brings Nintendo's Marketable Monsters into the Real World

In 2016, you'll finally be able to take to the streets and capture an army of cute creatures with your smartphones—as god intended.

If you're young enough for Pokemon to have a stranglehold on your childhood, you no doubt dreamed of a world where the rules of Nintendo's RPG also applied to real life—it's the only possible scenario where the existence of 10-year-old dropout drifters is considered part of the status quo.

Nearly 20 years after the hugely successful RPG launched in Japan, The Pokemon Company is finally making these fantasies a reality with Pokemon Go, an augmented reality mobile game developed by Niantic. While not much is known about Go outside of its basic premise, the trailer implies this new creation will likely give you a reason to live and maybe, just maybe, save your troubled family.

Pokemon Go has been in development for a few years, and designed with the intent to encourage kids to get out and explore their surroundings, along with their parents, friends, and siblings. Today's announcement also brought news of a watch peripheral to be used alongside the game, which will rumble and flash when Pokemon draw near—a nice solution to the dangers of wandering around outside with your eyes affixed to a tiny screen. And, at the event, Pokemon designer Junichi Masuda implied Go won't just be a stand-alone product; future installments may very well interact with this spin-off.

Pokemon has taken baby steps towards AR, what with the pedometer packed into 2010s HeartGold and SoulSilver, along with adding the monsters to Google Maps as part of an April Fools' prank, but Go represents a major leap into a formerly unexplored format for the franchise. While the trailer certainly looks impressive—even if it's all faked—you still have to wonder how well this will work in the wide-open spaces of America compared to the fairly dense cities of Japan, where Go was conceived. There's also safety issues to worry about, like the possibility of kids wandering into traffic, or getting their expensive smartphones stolen while distracted by fictional monsters. It's one of those cases where great ideas and impressive technology have to overcome practical and boring problems, so let's hope they do.

Whatever the case, the existence of Pokemon Go finally gives me a legitimate excuse to post this image, and for that, we should all be thankful.

Tagged with Analyses, AR, mobile, Pokemon, USgamer.

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. See our terms & conditions.

Read this next

Pokemon Go July 2019 Community Day - Mudkip, Date, Exclusive Move, Bonuses

Here’s what you’ll begetting up to for the Pokemon Go July Community Day.

Pokemon Go Teases Team Rocket With a Hot Air Balloon At European Go Fest

And it seems like there's more on the way, too.

Pokemon Go Armored Mewtwo Release Date - Armored Mewtwo Raid, Mewtwo Clothing

There’s a brand new kind of Pokemon coming to Pokemon Go Raid battles. Here’s what you need to know about Armored Mewtwo.

Pokemon Go Jump Start Research Tasks - Quest Steps, Rewards, End Date

There’s some brand new Special Research to take on in Pokemon Go. Here’s what you need to know about the Pokemon Go Jump Start Research.

Pokemon Go Trading Discount: Trading Cost, Stardust Cost Chart - How to Trade in Pokemon Go

We’ve got everything you need to know about the brand new trading features that are now available in Pokemon GO.

Pokemon Go Shiny Alolan - How to Get Alolan Vulpix, Shiny Alolan Pokemon 2019

Alolan Pokemon are becoming more and more common in Pokemon GO. Here’s every Pokemon GO Alolan Pokemon, and how to get them.

Pokemon Go July Field Research - Research Breakthrough, Rewards

Here's your guide to the Pokemon Go July Research quests and rewards.

More Analyses

A Fresh Look at New Super Mario Bros. U on Switch: Does it Measure Up to the Classics?

Where does New Super Mario Bros. U Deluxe rank alongside Super Mario Bros. 3 and Super Mario World?

The State of Destiny 2 After Forsaken: A Game That Can't Shake Its Troubles

Forsaken was a solid start, but it wasn't enough to pull everyone back.

Sorry Pokemon Fans, Your Gold-Plated Cards from Burger King Aren't Worth Squat

Burger King's Pokemon cards from 1999 look kind of nice and they're fun to remember, but they're barely worth the cost of a milkshake.