Earlier this week, the Pokémon Company officially announced what so many people have been waiting so long for: a brand new Pokémon Snap game. What's more, the title will be available for the Nintendo Switch, another request from would-be players, and the game will recreate most of the experience players will (barely) remember from the first game. It's aptly called New Pokémon Snap, and it looks like it will be a ton of fun, both for fans of the original title and newcomers.
And yet, I want more.
I have fond memories of playing the original game all those years ago. It was a nice twist on the traditional Pokémon gameplay loop. If you didn't play the game back then, or have never heard of it, here's the gist: instead of battling the pocket monsters for glory and fame (or just because you want to), Pokémon Snap is all about using a camera to capture the little (or big) creatures. It was a different approach and it worked, setting Pokémon Snap aside as one of the best games for the franchise as a whole, and leaving many players out there wanting a sequel.
That first game came out in late March of 1999, so we've obviously been wanting a new game in the series for a long time. But, hey, better late than never, right? And seeing the game on the Switch, with that portability thanks to the console design, is great. But it's that portability that got me thinking about augmented reality and how I think the next version of Pokémon Snap could be even better.
It's not like Pokémon and AR are strangers. The two combined to make one of the world's most popular games, Pokémon GO, and I can still remember all of the crowds rushing around everywhere. Sure, the title doesn't really garner as much buzz as it used to, but there are still a lot of players out there. And I think the same idea, the same concept, used for just exploring your surroundings to snap pictures of "wild" digital pocket monsters would be pretty great.
The Pokémon wouldn't just be standing around, either. At least, not in my fanciful idea, anyway. I think it would be great if, when you turn on the mobile version of Pokémon Snap and view the world through the viewfinder of your phone's display, players could see the pocket monsters all over the place. Some would pose when you got close, but others would be shy and force you to effectively chase them to get the best shot. I can just imagine some pretty great shots of both large and small creatures.
That's a lot of movement, though, which could be a potential problem considering players are actually moving around in the real world where people, cars, and buildings are just waiting in the wings. But I think the idea is pretty awesome, and I think AR could make a Pokémon Snap game pretty exciting. Potentially even more exciting than the standard version of the game.
But, what do you think? Would you play an AR-based Pokémon Snap? Let me know!