Pokémon Go rolled out to select markets on July 6th and is currently available in the US, Australia and other regions. It is at the time of writing, not available on the Canadian iTunes store or Google Play store. The app is currently dominating the top free game lists, with it currently holding the top slot in the US, Australia and New Zealand. The release schedule has not been outlined yet, but it is expected to launch in Japan soon.
Pokémon Go uses augmented reality to allows players to catch virtual Pokémon within the game by walking around the real world and utilising your smartphone to catch them. The game will also allow players to control and support Pokemon Gyms once you reach level 5 in the game.
While Pokémon Go is not a direct win for Nintendo, being published by The Pokémon Company and developed by Niantic, Inc. it is a vision of the potential Nintendo future. With mobile phones secure in their place as the mobile powerhouse, games that take beloved franchises and merge them with new technologies like Pokémon Go and ideal for the platform. It is hard to say how Nintendo could bring a Zelda or a Mario to mobile, but with so many properties under their belt, Nintendo has a vast allotment of franchises to draw from. Nintendo and DeNA have already announced that Fire Emblem and Animal Crossing will be the next set of mobile titles. No release date has been given for either game as of yet.