All posts in “Pokémon Go”

Alohomora! Harry Potter game hits your phone next year with Jam City


Niantic’s much-anticipated Harry Potter follow-up to Pokémon GO is coming next year, but Harry Potter fans who want their first taste of Hogwarts on mobile don’t have to wait, because Harry Potter is coming to the Los Angeles-based mobile gaming studio, Jam City.

Through a partnership with Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Jam City has gotten a license to develop a new mobile game, Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, that lets players create their own character and enroll in Hogwarts.

The new game will not only let players enroll in Hogwarts, but they’ll get to train their characters in all of the magical classes and extracurricular activities the school has to offer. Want to become an Auror? Take Defence Against the Dark Arts. Worried about dueling skills? There’s a Dueling Club feature that will let gamers test their mettle against each other. And for fans of Slytherin’s favorite professor, potions classes are also on the curriculum.

Jam City said that most of the iconic professors from the Harry Potter stories reprise their roles in the game — including Professor Dumbledore. 

The companies have been pretty quiet about the details of the game, which we hear will be set in a time that pre-dates the events of the much beloved series of Harry Potter books penned by J.K. Rowling.

Launching under Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment’s Portkey Games, a label dedicated to creating gaming experiences inspired by the wizarding world of Harry Potter, players will get to experience the ins and outs of life as a Hogwarts student.

(I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I am for this thing. I’ve never downloaded a game on my phone in my life and I can’t wait to make this the first app on my home screen.)

“What an honor it is for Jam City to develop a mobile game for one of the largest and most iconic brands in history,” said Chris DeWolfe, co-founder and CEO of Jam City, in a statement. “As Harry Potter fanatics ourselves, we have great respect for the millions of people throughout the world who have followed the Harry Potter stories for more than 20 years. This game is a labor of love for our developers and artists, who are dedicated to creating the most magical entertainment and game play experience for everyone who adores J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World.”

The game was actually the result of several rounds of focus group testing and a ton of input from employees at Jam City, which counts a number of hardcore Harry Potter heads among its staff. The team came up with the idea internally and pitched it to Warner Bros.

For anyone worried about whether the writers would mess with their beloved universe, the project was penned by two capable writers who were vetted and approved by J.K. Rowling’s team at The Blair Partnership.

Both Matthew London, who wrote a series of science fiction novels called “The 8th Continent” as well as tie-in books for a number of iconic series, and Allen Warner, who is the director of Narrative at Jam City and previously worked for DC Comics and Warner Bros. Animation, have the chops to develop a compelling narrative.

Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery is a mobile gaming experience inspired by J.K. Rowling’s spell-binding lore, and it will be an exciting, fun way for fans to experience the Wizarding World,” said David Haddad, president, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment in a statement. “It is great to work with Jam City on the game, as the company has a proven track record of bringing rich, beloved worlds to players of mobile entertainment.”

The game’s not available til next year, but will be distributed through iTunes, Google Play and the Amazon App store.

Fans who want more information can check out Facebook and Twitter for more details.

The fact that Jam City was able to land this deal is a huge win as the company preps for a potential initial public offering in the next few years. Harry Potter remains one of the biggest franchises of the twenty-first century, with the series of books selling 450 million copies worldwide and the films grossing $7.7 billion at global box offices.

Featured Image: Warner Bros.

Here’s everything new Niantic just added to Pokémon Go

Weather spawns

The weather will influence what spawns around you. If a Pokémon spawns because of weather patterns, it’ll have a more intense ring on the map and an icon next to its name during capture (see red arrows).

– Clear and sunny: More grass, ground, and fire Pokémon will spawn

Cloudy: More fairy, fighting, and poison Pokémon will spawn

– Foggy: More dark and ghost Pokémon will spawn

– Rainy: More water, electric, and bug Pokémon will spawn

– Snowy: More ice and steel Pokémon will spawn

– Windy: More dragon, flying, and psychic Pokémon will spawn

Niantic tells me the weather influences spawns, but it’s not set in stone. You might see snow Pokémon pop up when it’s sunny… they’ll just be considerably less common. Meanwhile, weather will impact spawns of all Pokémon, not just the new Gen 3 stuff.

Pokémon Go creator raises $200 million ahead of Harry Potter game launch


Pokémon Go creator Niantic has raised a new $200 million in funding, reports The Wall Street Journal. The Series B raise was led by Spark Capital, and includes participation from Founders Fund, Meritech, Javelin Venture Capital, You & Mr. Jones and NetEase, Inc. Spark partner Megan Quinn is also joining Niantic’s board as part of the new financing deal.

Niantic is known for its augmented reality games, which began with the multiplayer sci-fi spy game Ingress, created during the company’s time as an internal startup founded within Google. In 2015, Niantic spun out as its own entity, and it launched Pokémon Go in July, 2016. The Pokémon AR game managed to attract massive interest at launch, resulting in huge real-world gatherings of players thanks to its mechanic of incentivizing players to move around in the real world to achieve in-game success.

In its Series A round, Niantic raised $30 million in funding from an investor group including Alsop Loui Partners, Google, Nintendo, The Pokémon Company, Cyan and Scott Banister and others. Earlier this year, Niantic announced its first acquisition, of mobile social network developer Evertoon, and it also recently made official its intent to build a mobile AR game based on Harry Potter.

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite is due out sometime next year, and will be developed in partnership with Warner Bros. Interactive.

Harry Potter is getting its own AR mobile game from the ‘Pokémon Go’ developers

Get ready to finally become the witch or wizard you’ve always wanted to be.

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite is a new augmented reality mobile game created in partnership between Warner Bros. and Niantic  —  the creators of the hit mobile game Pokémon Go.

Not much is known about Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, which was revealed today, but it sounds like it has some similar features to Pokémon Go. Namely, players will have to visit locations in the real world to find different objects and engage with the world. That means uncovering magical artifacts, meeting characters and beasts from the wizarding world, and learning to cast spells.

On top of finding and collecting things, a press release from Niantic mentions going on adventures, which could be referring to quest-like activities or group challenges similar to the raids that were added to Pokémon Go this year.

How these adventures and spells will manifest in the game — and the many other details that are surely to come — will be revealed in 2018. There is no information regarding an expected release date in today’s reveal.

At the very least, we know the game will be magical and have AR elements, which is honestly enough of a pull to entice most Harry Potter fans. Ourselves included.

Whether it will have the same boom in popularity that Pokémon Go enjoyed is a whole other thing entirely.

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Niantic’s follow-up to Pokémon Go will be a Harry Potter AR game launching in 2018


Niantic Labs had tremendous success with Pokémon Go, which paired their expertise in building location-based augmented reality mobile experiences with a top-flight IP with a ravenous fan base. So, it stands to reason that we should expect a similar fan response to Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, an AR title set to launch in 2018, co-developed by Warner Bros. Interactive and its new sub brand Portkey Games.

Niantic building a Harry Potter game similar to Pokémon Go was rumoured last year, when the company noted that it had acquired the rights to the app. But the rumour was subsequently debunked, oddly enough, with the original article containing the information pulled from the web.

The app is now official, bu the details are still scarce, with the launch timeframe of just sometime next year, but it sounds like there will be significant influence from the Niantic game Ingress, which allows players to roam the real world collecting power-ups, defending locations and exploring their environment.

The mechanics of Ingress would actually translate pretty well to the fictional Harry Potter universe, and seems almost ready-made for a fantasy spell casting coat of paint to replace its science-fiction special forces veneer. Also, like Pokémon Go, it could benefit from the location database built up by Ingress originally (and expanded by the Pokémon title) to incorporate real-world locations into the in-game experience.

Featured Image: Warner Bros.