2018 will be a busy year for game developer Niantic. Apart from the Harry Potter Wizards Unite augmented reality game (dubbed the next generation Pokémon Go), the company has decided to revisit its debut game, Ingress, and breathe new life into it. The revamped game, titled Ingress Prime, will feature an immersive AR experience and will be accompanied by an anime series on YouTube.
A “Spiritual Core” Project
The CEO of Niantic, John Hanke, explained in emphatic terms the reason why Ingress will be redesigned and re-launched:
“This game was the place where we figured out all of the things that we later applied to Pokémon Go, and will be drawing from for other projects that we do in the future.”
So, what will gamers find new in Ingress Prime? A lot of things, according to information released by the company. The augmented reality game will be redesigned, with new graphics, new storyline and new interactions. Behind the scenes, there will be further changes:
- JSON replaced by protobuf
- Basic code inspired by Pokémon Go
The new storyline wants to be attractive both for people who already played Ingress, but also for new augmented reality game fans. Ingress Prime will create a new story arc for players and an even more immersive environment, with new tasks and challenges.
A Bigger Team for New Challenges
It is difficult to imagine the work needed to put the first Ingress augmented reality game together with a team of 35 people. But now Niantic has grown to 150 game developers and has great plans ahead for the Ingress Prime.
“With Ingress Prime, we’re ushering in a new chapter of the game for our passionate fans who have been with us since the beginning as well as the next evolution of the experience for those new to Ingress,” stated Hanke.
Niantic is a spin-off from giant Google which, since its inception, has been focusing on creating new gaming experiences and new worlds with the help of the latest technologies, especially augmented reality.
First launched in 2012, Ingress created a new gaming concept which involves a large number of players and the use of real life locations which, seen through the smartphone camera, reveal hidden objects and possible interactions.
By pitching players one against the other in two distinct factions, The Enlightened and The Resistance, Ingress became the biggest live action game with this type of narrative. The revamped Ingress Prime augmented reality game allows current or former players to retain their level, achievements and bonuses gained so far in the initial version of the game.