In the Summer of 2016, you could not go anywhere without hearing about the brand-new mobile game, Pokémon Go. After people started to catch on to the augmented reality craze, the overwhelming number of players began to cause several server issues due to its popularity. Since then, the hype is died down considerably. Niantic, the company that created the game, has reported that 2017 saw a huge drop off in revenue, and most of its players have quit playing the game. Nevertheless, the company is optimistic for the future, as it still has a solid, core group of players that use the app regularly. On the other hand, don’t be surprised if Pokémon Go takes off again, as Niantic has found a partner and will be launching the popular mobile game in the world’s biggest mobile market. Yes, Pokémon Go is set to launch in China.
Chinese regulation laws require any international companies to partner with a domestic company in order to bring outside entities into the country. Niantic has been working tirelessly to find a reputable company to bring their successful game to the world’s most populated nation. Now, they seem to have found their guys. NetEase has experience with international partnerships, especially in the video game industry. The Chinese company was responsible for the import of the world-popular video game, Minecraft, so it’s safe to say that Pokémon Go will be in good hands for its launch in China.
Working Around Chinese Law
Although NetEase has experience with international games, it has not had to deal with the potential problems that could face Niantic when it comes to its location-based AR game. Pokémon Go relies heavily on the ability to access a player’s GPS function via Google Maps; however, China has banned the use of GPS, as well as Google itself. While NetEase and Niantic are extremely confident in their ability to bring the game to China, these peculiar laws may cause a hiccup or two in the process. No release date has officially been set.