Outdoor-based AR mobile game Pokemon GO is still generating revenue despite increased social distancing in the COVID-19 pandemic. According to GamesIndustry, developer Niantic has been working to make the game home-friendly with various activities that can be done without travelling. This also gained almost $23 million in gross revenue from last week alone.
Searchable data by Sensor Tower also implied a recent in-game event prompted millions of users to access Pokemon GO as Niantic implemented better indoor tracking and wildlife presence in houses. Raids could also be joined without going to designated real-life locations.
In an online post, the developers announced the app would continue to change with the growing COVID-19 situation across the world while tackling ” the key challenge of making playing indoors as exciting and innovative as our outdoor gameplay.”
“We are adding to our product roadmap so we can enable more ways to play inside and around the home in the coming days and weeks, when the world needs it most,” Niantic wrote, adding more indoor-friendly changes were coming to their Harry Potter: Wizards Unite and Ingress Portals AR games as well.
The detailed roadmap from Niantic is as follows:
Exercise: you can track your steps indoor with Adventure Sync so activities like cleaning your house and running on a treadmill count toward game achievements. We’re going to make improvements to Adventure Sync so it works even better with indoor movement and activities.
Social: we’re enhancing our in-game virtual social features to enable players to stay in touch when they can’t meet in real life. You’ll soon be able to team up with friends and take on Raid Battles together in Pokémon GO from the comfort of home.
Explore: we’re also looking into how we can help players virtually visit and share memories about their favorite real-world places, until they can once again visit them in person.
Live Events: we’re re-imagining what it means to participate in a Niantic live event this summer, and putting our creative energy towards bringing the excitement directly to your home. That means we’re working on an entirely new way to enjoy Pokémon GO Fest. More details coming soon!
A major feature includes GO Battle League which lets users play against others online through matchmaking and local servers. Requirements for incense, Pokeballs and other supplies are also given with every three kilometers of steps taken indoors.