Niantic may be best known for Pokémon Go, but it's developed a few other augmented reality games over the years like Harry Potter: Wizards Unite and Pikmin Bloom. In what looks to be inspired by Pokémon Go — with a dash of Tamagotchi thrown in for good measure — Niantic has announced Peridot, a new AR game where players can raise the titular little creatures and explore the world with them.
Like Niantic's previous games, Peridot is being developed exclusively for mobile devices. It remains to be seen whether it hits it big like Pokémon Go and becomes one of the best Android games available or if it suffers the same fate as Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, which never took off like Niantic had hoped. Until it releases and we get our answers, here's everything we know about Peridot so far.
What is Peridot?
If you haven't already heard much about Peridot, everyone is saying it looks to be a mix of Pokémon Go and Tamagotchi, and from what we've seen so far, that's fairly accurate. Niantic is creating a new augmented reality adventure where players can breed, raise, and explore the world with the titular creatures.
According to Niantic, "After thousands of years of slumber, Peridots are waking to a world vastly different from the one in which they used to roam, and they’ll need your help to protect them from extinction."
Described as a "real-world adventure pet game," Peridot features hand-crafted and procedurally-generated designs to make each creature unique.
Peridot's initial reveal trailer does showcase much in the way of gameplay, instead featuring simulated game footage of what the world would look like if Peridot were real. Thankfully, several images on the game's official website give us a better understanding of what players can expect when it launches.
Like previous Niantic titles, Peridot is displayed vertically on the screen and players will be able to use their phone's camera to capture the world around them with the Peridots superimposed into the environment. In addition to going on daily walks where Peridots can interact with the environment and discover items, players can pet, feed, and play with the cuddly creatures. And don't worry if you forget to feed them. Despite its premise of saving them from extinction, Peridots can't die in the game.
Because Peridots feature a combination of hand-crafted and procedurally-generated designs, your Peridot will be one-of-a-kind. By breeding them with one another, players will discover different archetypes (resembling dragons, cheetahs, unicorns, etc.)
To enhance its social aspect, players are encouraged to share their discoveries and photos with friends. It's unknown whether Peridot will be able to be traded between players.
Peridots: Are they NFTs?
Considering how each Peridot is unique, it'd seem like an opportunity to turn them into NFTs. For now, at least, that won't be happening. Senior producer Ziah Fogel told The Verge, "It’s a really interesting idea, and it’s something that we’re obviously looking at. But right now, we’re focused on testing and refining the core gameplay experience to ensure it’s really fun and accessible."
It wasn't a firm no, which may disappoint some players, but it doesn't appear to be on the cards at the moment.
Peridot: Beta testing
Niantic is planning to soft-launch Peridot in limited regions for beta testing, set to begin in April on the Google Play Store and App Store. As the beta testing progresses, more regions will be added. To be notified when the game becomes available, you can sign up on its website.
Peridot: Is it free-to-play?
There will more than likely be microtransactions and in-app purchases of some kind, but players should be able to download Peridot for free. This is a similar approach that Niantic took in its previous games using the freemium model.
Peridot: Release date and platforms
Peridot does not have a release date at this time other than its beta testing launching in April. It will be available for both Android and iOS devices. Niantic hasn't stated any device requirements, but players will likely only need to be running a newer Android OS, have access to a strong internet connection, and have GPS or location services.
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Jennifer Locke has been playing video games nearly her entire life. You can find her posting pictures of her dog and obsessing over PlayStation and Xbox, Star Wars, and other geeky things.