It will be two years come July since Pokémon Go launched. And while it was a smashing success, it was a bit of a disaster too. But Niantic has learned a ton since the release of their über popular ARG game. And with the developer bringing Harry Potter: Wizards Unite to us as well, they’re company is confident their ready to stick the landing this time with another incredibly popular franchise.
Exactly when they plan to stick the landing is still in question though. However, CEO of Niantic John Hanke recently spoke with Financial Times and helped narrow the window a bit. Hanke stated the game should be landing on iOS and Android devices in the second half of 2018. It’s a large window, sure. But more information than we previously had.
Hanke stated that Niantic is “much better positioned” at this time to prepare for the launch of Wizards Unite than they were for Pokémon Go. Thanks in large part to the growing pains the team experienced with Go.
They are also much more proficient with dealing with locational backlash due to their game. Hanke stated that “In terms of dealing with public locations, government policy, regulations, and public reaction to people being out in the real world, we have built up our expertise there.”
The gist of the game, Hanke says, is that “The ‘muggle’ world and the wizarding world are only separated by this thin veil. It’s very easy for us to imagine bringing that kind of magic into our everyday lives.” To do so, Niantic will utilize their library of in-game locations that they have derived from Ingress and Pokémon Go.
As popular as the Pokémon franchise is, it’s pretty easy to argue that Harry Potter has a broader reach. Harry Potter: Wizards Unite has the potential to reach a much larger audience than Pokémon Go did. And if it does, Niantic better be ready to handle the immediate influx of new wizards.