Pokemon Go has taken the world by storm ever since it was released in the US and Australia on July 6, 2016. The augmented reality game allows people to capture, train, fight and trade virtual Pokemon throughout the world. The game is free to play, and makes money through in-app purchases.
How to play Pokemon Go?
You need to know the tricks of how the game works before diving into Pokémon Go. First of all, you have to sign up for the game. Use your Google account or you can opt for the Pokémon Trainer Club account. The game stores all your information on the servers. Here’s how to get ready to play the game:
You have to customize your digital avatar just after signing up.? You have plenty of options to choose your hair color, eye color, hat, pants, shirts, shoes and even the style of your backpacks. Once you are done with the customization of your avatar, you are all set to play the real game.
At first, you need to enter the map, the main area of the game. This area can have said to be an excellently animated version of Goggle maps. Here you can see rustling grass, roads and several local landmarks named as Pokémon Gyms and PokéStops. Your avatar moves in the real world as you do. Small characters of Pokémon pop up on the map along with a small vibration as you move forward. You can try to capture them as you tap on the characters.
Features of Pokemon Go
Player icon: You can find your player icon as situated at the bottom left corner of the digital screen. Tap on the icon in order to view the information of your avatar. You can also see an entire list of your in-game achievements.
Backpack: The backpack is the place where you can store all the items that you pick up throughout your entire journey. You can use these stuffs whenever you need them while playing the game.
Pokémon: This feature lets you view and use all the Pokémons which are in your possession.
Pokédex: It is your index of Pokémon and it is filled up with all the information of all the species you have already arrested.
Nearby Pokémon: you can look for which Pokémons are nearby by tapping on the bottom right corner of your screen.
There are plenty of options out there when it comes to choose the avatars of Pokémon. These come in variety of shapes, types and sizes. You have 100 types of Pokémon available to capture while walking along the map. Another interesting part is that you will find multiple creatures of the psychic, fairy, grass, electric, ghost, flying, water, rocks, bug, poison, ground, and the normal type.
Pokemon Go – Revenue
Within 24 hours of release, Pokemon Go topped the App Store in ‘Top Grossing’ and Free’ charters. The company Nintendo saw its share price rising by 10 percent after the game’s release to 23 percent on July 11, 2016. It is the highest one-day surge in the value of Nintendo’s stock since 1983, adding $7.5 billion to the company’s net worth.
Pokemon within barely days of its release, surpassed Tinder when it came to the number of downloads in US phones. While 2 percent of people in the US have Tinder (released in 2012) on their phones, 5.6 percent of people have Pokemon Go installed on their phones. It is even rivaling Twitter in the count for overall downloads. The augmented reality game made close to $5 million on the first day of its release and has been chart topper in both iStore and Playstore. To become a roaring success and make a huge impact on profits, Pokemon Go has to create profits anywhere between $140 and $197 million every month.
As of now, Pokemon Go is amassing a revenue of $1.60 million daily, which has overtaken the highest revenue earning game ‘Clash Royal’ which is making an average of $350,000. Though after hype wears off, Pokemon Go make earn lesser but it is still believed to be consistent with extra features coming up.
How to download Pokemon Go?
The game was released only in three countries – USA, New Zealand and Australia. Further plans to roll out the app in other countries like UK were paused following unprecedented number of people playing in the game.
If the game is not available in area, you can also download the app by changing the region on your iPhone or downloading the game as an APK on your Android phone.
As popular as Pokemon Go is, it has also resulted in safety related problems among players who walk any lengths to play the game. There have been instances wherein distracted players injured themselves hitting something or the other on the pavement or road, while playing the game. On a positive note, it can also be said that this is the game that has actually made people go out of the house and exercise themselves, as mentioned by users on Twitter.
Pokemon Go – Creator and How it was Invented
Pokemon Go has been developed by the software development company Niantic, Inc, which was formed by John Hanke in 2010. It was actually developed as an internal startup at Google, called Niantic Labs. By October 2015, Niantic Inc was created as an independent entity by Google, in October 2015, after it restructured Alphabet Inc.
Pokemon Go was created with an investment of $30 million with capital inflow from Niantic Labs, Nintendo and the Pokemon Company (which is partly owned by Nintendo).
The idea for Pokemon Go was conceived by Tsunekazu Ishihara (Pokemon Company president) and Satoru Iwata of Nintendo on April 1, 2013. The concept was announced in collaboration with Google, known as ‘Pokemon Challenge’. Satorru Iwata died on July 11, 2015 due to bile duct complexities.
John Hanke, the founder and CEO of Niantic tapped his experience of working in Google, to ‘map out’ the game. He is one of the brains behind Google Earth, a company which Google bought to create ‘Google Earth’. The many years of experience which John Hanke and his team had working on Google Earth and Google Maps, came handy when he started working on Pokemon Go.
Niantic launched an augmented reality game in 2011 in the beta-mode called Ingress. The users in the game provided a huge data pool which helped how and where Pokémon gyms and Pokestops would appear in Pokemon Go. The team then mapped out the places that were suited to play the game, some of which included historical sites, local businesses and famous sites. The team then asked people to submit places which could be used as ‘portals’. There were 15 million submissions of which 5 million were approved.
The portal data for Ingress became the platform for Pokemon Go. In fact, the most popular Ingres portals are called ‘gyms’ in Pokemon Go and the next famous ones are called Pokestops. Since these locations have been given by users themselves, they are mostly places that people usually go. According to John Hanke, it took two and a half years for people to give data of places that they though were good to play Ingress.
Of course, for Pokemon, there was a need for even more mapping apart from the data provided by Ingress. The water bodies like river, stream etc, were the places where water-type Pokemon like Squirtles and Magikarp appear. Thus data for various types of geographic classifications ranging from vegetation to climate, were drawn.
According to John Hanke, when Niantic Inc created Pokemon Go, they are three goals in mind – to make people exercise and have lot of fun while doing it, to get renewed interest in real life landmarks and historical sites in your neighborhood and help people spend time together. The third one happens when people spend time with other fellow players at higher levels.
Pokemon Creator – Net Worth
As Pokemon Go becomes a cult game, the person who created the original game is raking in the riches. Satoshi Tajiri is the one who made the Pokemon game. His net worth is $6 billion.
While Nintendo may have conceptualized the game, the app has been created by Niantic Inc, the augmented reality wing of Google in October 2015, in collaboration with the Pokemon Company (which receives 30 percent of the revenue from Pokemon Go). Ninetendo is an investor in both Niantic Inc. and the Pokemon Company.
Additional Features on Pokemon Go
John Hawke also talked about additional features and game play options in the future. Trading Pokemon is one of them which will make players interact with each other both in real and virtual circuit. The next features include Pokestops and Gyms, where leaders can customize their functions. There are plans to include the game into augmented reality devices like Microsoft Hololens. There will be leadership boards globally that will showcase who the best Pokemon trainer in area is.