Last month, The Pokémon Company celebrated the 20th anniversary of the best-selling Pokémon franchise in a variety of ways, including new games like Pokken Tournament, a thrilling Super Bowl ad, and in-store promotions to keep fans excited. One thing that’s sure to be a hit for the company this year is the upcoming “real-world gaming” app Pokémon GO!

Initially announced last year, Pokémon GO! promises to be an involving experience for players, enabling them to capture Pokémon creatures in real-world environments, making fine use of augmented reality. Today, the team at Niantic Labs revealed an extensive look at the game and how it will work.

“This platform combines mobile location technology and augmented reality to create a unique game experience that motivates players to go outside and explore the world around them,” the development team explained.

But players won’t be able to pick up types of Pokémon from the get-go. Certain ones require exploration. For example, water-based Pokémon (like Squirtle) can only be found near lakes and oceans. Furthermore, players will need to visit PokéStops, found at real-world locations like public art installations and museums, to acquire eggs and special items. Then they’ll need to walk around in order to hatch the eggs in the hopes of acquiring new Pokémon for their collection.


The social aspect of the game, like with previous Pokémon titles, lies in battles. Players will be able to join up with one of three different teams in an effort to compete for ownership of select Gyms. This involves placing one of their characters inside another player’s gym in real world stops, in the hopes of overtaking them.

Players who capture more than one type of Pokémon stand a better chance of having them evolve into more powerful characters so that they can “take over” opposing Gyms. That’s bound to be a big draw for mobile users who want to get the most out of their game by completing their library of Pokémon creatures.


Pokémon GO! is looking to become a key aspect in the series’ 20th anniversary celebration, with a social and augmented reality experience that will be right up there with the highly popular Ingress. There’s still no release date for the game, but it is expected to come out sometime this year, for iOS and Android. A test should be taking place around springtime, indicating that the game is nearly ready for launch.