The world was shocked with a blast from the past when a mobile version of one of most popular Nintendo games from the 1990’s hit the market. Pokemon Go has been downloaded millions of times and is one the hottest topics in the world. Love it or hate it, you most likely know all about this now iconic game. Developed by Niantic, experts are claiming that the game played a vital role in reshaping the $25 billion mobile gaming industry. While that fact could be argued, it is clear that this hit game will inspire several others copycat versions.
“You’re going to see other developers potentially changing their pipeline to incorporate augmented reality or location-based technology,” said Mike Olson, an analyst at Piper Jaffray Cos. “Those plans are probably being put in place right now.”
Starting out, Pokemon Go was only available in the United States, Australia and New Zealand. In the countries that didn’t have access to the hit game, aspiring game developers began creating lookalike apps. For instance, Citymon Go was China’s answer to Pokemon Go. Featuring a character that looks pretty similar to Pokemon’s Pikachu, the app quickly became the most downloaded mobile game in the country.
With such a crushing dominance in the mobile gaming industry, Pokemon Go may force other popular game developers to add some sort of location component or augmented reality perspective to their games. It won’t be easy to top the app though. Pokemon Go was in development for years and the technology took a long time to perfect. It also helps that the game sparks a sense of nostalgia for millennials everywhere. What doesn’t this game have going for it?
There are critics who claim that the widely popular game is just a passing fad. The game has people doing a lot of things that they would never do, but the fun could eventually wear off.
“The game requires couch potatoes to get off the couch, and the novelty will wear off when they get tired or when their phone batteries die,” says Michael Pachter, a Wedbush Securities analyst. “I give this four months at the top of the charts, then it will fade.”
Believe what you want, but the copycats aren’t listening. It seems anyone can create their own Pokemon Go-inspired app. In fact, Wikitude provided an article that broke the process down into three simple steps. First, build a basic Geo-based infrastructure. Now this step requires quite a bit of work and knowledge about server backend. This is where you will build some of the most important components. Secondly, you will need to build a geo-AR app. Finally, make the rules of your game. This is less of the building and more of the creative stages of building an app.
Creating an app is time-consuming and costly. Not to mention, you will want a team of people to delegate smaller tasks to. Some recommend using on demand work platforms to find extra help. Did we say the steps were simple? Because they are anything but. However, there will inevitably be those that will give it a shot and some that will actually succeed. One thing is for sure, Pokemon Go has completely revolutionized both augmented reality games and mobile gaming. The app is the first of its kind, but it will definitely not be the last. Who knows? You could be the next developer of the top gaming app.