Those of Niantic have a metaverse in mind different. Made above all of an increasingly close integration between physical reality and digital elements towards that basic augmented reality for which no viewers and glasses are needed, but only the smartphone.
If the starting point, Besides Ingresswas the huge success of Pokémon Go (almost 6 years after the debut, the players in the world are still many and over time new Pokémon, new features, events and much more have arrived) now the Californian company try again with Peridot. Another mobile game, actually the first completely independent from the time of Ingress, which on the models proposed previously adds the characteristics of the pet simulation genre.
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Ma how does it work Peridot? Players will have to take care of these colorful fantastic creatures, called peridot or dot and awakened from a millennial sleep, building a deep emotional bond with them by exploring the world together, feeding and raising them to diversify their species. Yes, obviously there is also a touch of the old, unfading Tamagotchi. Developed entirely by Niantic, as always, it aims at a general audience, therefore very large, and even more casual than other titles. And it is no coincidence that it integrates a series of very evident social features.
The gaming experience, which at the moment is in so-called soft launch in some countries starting from Malaysia, consists precisely in raising, caring for, playing and explore the physical world together with your peridots, unique and unrepeatable genderless creatures each based on an original archetype and kept in the nest. Obviously, a real taxonomy of species and aspects will develop around the peridots, according to the lesson of the Pokémon that have earned over 5 billion dollars in 6 years. While it is true that games with pets have been around for some time, augmented reality obviously offers many tools to innovate and enrich them. With the proprietary Lightship platformannounced last year to fit in its own way in the race to the metaverse, Niantic is therefore building a game that will expand to other markets already during the public beta.
Peridot has the potential for become the next Pokémon Go? Difficult to say, but some strengths are certainly the same (outdoor exploration, movement, social interaction), although John Hanke’s group insists on underlining their respective specificities. For example, dots (thanks to artificial intelligence systems) will do different things depending on the surfaces on which you view them. It is also not excluded that in the future the gaming experience may not be enhanced with the use of AR glasses or visors: the environment was built to guarantee the possibility of being enjoyed in even more refined ways. As well as, on the other hand, to integrate with live events in the real world dedicated to the community, which have always been strong points of the US house.
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The gameplay of Peridot it is not competitive, but is designed with challenging elements that encourage cooperation between players. In short, fantastic (or futuristic) animals will not fight each other nor will it be necessary to train them for this purpose. At the limit, their keepers may have to face some friendly challenges in which to demonstrate the incredible qualities of their peridot, “by building together with other players strategies suitable for further diversify the species”, As explained by the company. A bit like in beauty challenges for pets or an agility competition, in short.
Peridot it is also a first step towards a more articulated path: the group explained that “it was developed as a testing ground for cutting-edge AR experiences, exploiting the full suite of Niantic Lightship’s Ardk technology, including real-time mapping, semantic segmentation, obstacle occlusion and more ”. The bulk of the charm, however, will revolve around the creatures that are protagonists, because each peridot is unique, and each creature has its own unique DNA: “The reproduction system, which is modeled on the way in which DNA works in real life, unites the best of handcrafted resources and procedural generation, creating an astonishing array of unique creatures ”. Did anyone say NFT? For now the group has nothing to add on the subject, but the terrain is set up for any kind of development.