Pokémon GO, an upcoming free-to-play mobile Pokémon game is set to launch in 2016, Nintendo, The Pokémon Company, and Niantic announced earlier this week.
The proposed game will recreate Pokémon gameplay via augmented reality, allowing players to catch, train, and battle with Pokémon in the real world through GPS location data in their mobile devices, announced the Official Pokémon Website.
Players will also be able to play the game even without their smartphone through an optional wristwatch device called Pokémon GO Plus. Pokémon GO Plus will connect to players’ smartphones via Bluetooth and notify players about in-game events.
Pokémon GO will be the Pokémon franchise’s first foray into mobile gaming, aimed at delivering a complete social gaming experience, allowing players to explore their surroundings and environment, as well as interacting with friends and nearby players.
Tasked with Pokémon GO’s development will be Niantic, a former Google start-up best known for creating Ingress, an augmented reality game utilizing GPS technology, currently with 12 million downloads worldwide.
Junichi Masuda of Game Freak Inc., who has directed the Pokémon video game series, is also a lead contributor to the project, reported GameSpot.
Pokemon GO will be released on the App Store and Google Play in 2016 as a free download, with in-app purchases.