March 23, 2021 – Nintendo has today announced that it has partnered with augmented reality (AR) technology company Niantic, Inc. to jointly develop apps that combine Niantic’s real-world AR technology with Nintendo’s well known characters.
According to Nintendo, the first title that the two companies are working together to develop is based on the Pikmin franchise, a real-time strategy and puzzle video game series. Gameplay activities will apparently be designed to encourage walking and make the activity more enjoyable.
Shigeru Miyamoto, Representative Director, Fellow at Nintendo, commented: “Niantic’s AR technology has made it possible for us to experience the world as if Pikmin are secretly living all around us.” He added, “Based on the theme of making walking fun, our mission is to provide people a new experience that’s different from traditional games. We hope that the Pikmin and this app will become a partner in your life.”
The app is scheduled to launch globally later in 2021, with Niantic as the publisher. The title will also be the first title created by Niantic Tokyo Studio, Niantic’s development studio established in April 2018.
“As we continue to expand our games portfolio, it was a natural next step to team up with Nintendo,” said John Hanke, CEO of Niantic. “We’re looking forward to shaping the future of AR together, bringing Nintendo’s beloved game characters to life for mobile game players around the world.”
Niantic shot into the spotlight back in 2016 with the release of Pokémon Go!, which brought augmented reality gaming to millions of users around the world and helped to make the company a household name in AR gaming. Today’s announcement highlights the continuation of Nintendo’s partnership with Niantic, and with the vast range of Nintendo characters and franchises to choose from, it seems that there will be many more AR titles to come from the two companies.
Image credit: Nintendo