It was recently announced that the team at Niantic Labs was working on expanding their library of augmented reality titles with the release of Harry Potter: Wizards Unite. While the news was met with an almost universal cheer, who wouldn’t want to play a wizard in real life, fans of Pokemon Go were notably upset. Would Niantic be shifting their focus and money to a completely new title, only to leave last year’s hottest release by the wayside? As it turns out, Niantic has extensive plans to bring Pokemon Go into the future with some major updates that could change the functionality and fanbase of the game — in a good way.
Niantic was recently in the news not only for the Wizards Unite release announcement but their successful round of Series B investing that came afterward. Niantic raised nearly $200 million in additional funding through this avenue from companies like Javelin Venture Partners, NetEase, Meritech and Spark Capital. While it is correct to think that this money will go toward getting Wizards Unite off of the ground, a more probable notion is that the money will be pushed toward improving and expanding upon the strong foundation that Pokemon Go has built over the past year or so. Megan Quinn of Spark Capital said, “We believe John Hanke & the team are building an incredibly important company at the intersection of AR and real-world location.”
This investment news comes at the same time that Niantic made legendary Pokemon Ho-Oh available throughout the world via their raid program. Niantic said during the announcement, “Collectively, you caught over 3 billion Pokemon during the Global Catch Challenge, unlocking some amazing rewards along the way.” Niantic’s announcement goes on to say, “Ho-Oh is now appearing in Raid Battles at Gyms around the world until December 12, 2017.”
Right now, fans can take advantage of a bunch of new products for sale in the Pokemon Go store that can be acquired for PokeCoins. Among these items is the Special Box which includes Super Incubators, premium raid passes, and lucky eggs.