Augmented Reality (AR) games are just beginning to gain some footing in the gaming world, particularly the mobile gaming market. When Pokémon Go was released in June of 2016, it was a huge sensation. People couldn’t get enough of hunting down their favorite Pokémon in real life.
Pokémon Go’s Troubled History and Redemption
But, as most people know, the release of one of the most popular games of that year was something of a disaster. While the game was pretty cool and lived up to the initial hype for the most part, it was plagued by constant server issues and was known to be a huge drain on battery life. While the first few weeks had players out and about trying to “catch ’em all”, the frustration that the game produced had once excited players deleting the app and never turning back.
Since then, Niantic has worked extremely hard to fix the many bugs in the game, upgrade the gym system for more playability, add more Pokémon including legendaries, offer raids where players can work together, and put on regular events that keep players coming back. Recent Community Days have garnered tons of fans, with certain Pokémon appearing nearly everywhere, possessing a move set they would not on any other day. Some folks who gave up on the game in the beginning have even returned, pleased with the almost unrecognizable and notably improved gameplay.
But, surprisingly, even though Pokémon Go is probably the biggest AR game out there, most players don’t even take advantage of the Augmented Reality features. When the game got its start, it was fun to take pictures of Pokémon interacting with the real world, but the novelty wore off and batteries drained too quickly, leading most players to turn the AR switch off. It can be argued that the game still takes full advantage of Augmented Reality by requiring players to walk around in the real world and visit actual places to find Pokémon, but the AR camera is rarely used by avid players working to level up, defeat gyms, and catch as many Pokémon as they can.
More AR Games To Come
It seems that with Pokémon Go’s initial interest that there would be more AR games on the market grabbing people’s attention, but so far, no single game has had close to the same effect. The OG AR game, Ingress, is still out there and there are a few shooting games and zombie games are on app platforms and stores, but nothing particularly notable. One thing about AR games it that because they exist in the real world, they are a lot more fun if there are a lot of people playing.
Apple has made a big push this year to upgrade their AR technology, obviously anticipating in a leap in usage. And finally, a couple of AR games are on the horizon that promise everything that Pokémon Go has strived for, and even more. Nintendo has teased an AR game set in the Harry Potter universe which if it delivers on any of the vague details, should be an absolute sensation. However, there is no concrete information of promise of release.
But, we are certain that in the very new future, we are getting a huge new AR game — and it has dinosaurs. The popularity of the Jurassic Park franchise has never really waned, and since the story has dinosaurs in the modern world, it’s about time we have a game that reflects that. Developed by Ludia, which has previously been a part Jurassic World: The Game and Jurassic Park Builder, Jurassic World Alive will let players track, collect, and fight with dinosaurs. As someone who still plays Pokémon Go and absolutely loves the integration of games into my everyday life, I’m absolutely thrilled that this game is finally on its way.
According to the press release, “to bring the dinosaurs of Jurassic World™ to life, the game will leverage the latest in AR technology, allowing players to pose and take pictures and videos with dinosaurs they’ve collected during gameplay. Players discover dinosaurs by locating them on a map and deploying an in-game drone to collect DNA samples. This gives the player the ability to level up and create genetically modified dinosaurs in a lab, then compete in real-time player-versus-player arena battles to earn more rewards.”
Watch the Trailer for Jurassic World Alive: