Niantic gave us the hit APP for Smartphones, Pokémon Go (POGO) back on July 6 2016. It has been downloaded over 100 million times and has over 9 million users. Without a doubt, it is a very successful app and with seven more generations of Pokémon to still be released, its potential is limitless. Niantic has proven their commitment to appeasing their users in many ways. From events like the current Halloween event to special raids like the Mewtwo raid, Niantic is doing well in keeping their fans engaged and satisfied. With that said, there is a very real threat of Pokémon Go becoming as relevant as StarCraft currently is.
This accusation is not baseless, it is all too true and there is much evidence to prove this. The average person does not have the time nor energy to walk around trying to catch Pokémon, hatch eggs, fights gyms nor do raid battles. Now don’t get me wrong, Pokémon Go is a genius app that uses GPS, Augmented Reality (AR) and real time mechanics to make you feel as if you are a real Pokémon trainer. This has pulled in many of the older fans of Pokémon who grew up watching Ash on his first adventure and dreamt of going on their own journey one day. Unfortunately though, that same generation is no less than 20 years in age (it first aired in Japan in 1997 and worldwide in 1998). Being no less than 20, the users who play Pokémon Go for nostalgia are also preoccupied with school and or work. Add that with their hobbies and social life and you’ll see that there isn’t much time to actively play Pokémon Go. Many have diverted from the app and are more interested in other apps that they can play on their lunch break or on their commute to and from work or school.
Another element that would sink the app is that, in November 2016, the amount of active users in Pokémon Go had dramatically decreased. It was of no fault of Niantic, they were doing their best at the time, introduced an event for the holidays and there were no significant problems with their servers. So why did so many users fall off still? It’s because on the 18 November 2016, Game Freak released Pokémon Sun and Moon for the Nintendo 3DS and 2DS family. This shows that most of Pokémon Go’s users are fans of the franchise and would prefer to play the main game than the app. Though this did not completely sink the app, it did deal a significant blow to Niantic and they were forced to implement many changes to get their users active again. As they say, history always repeats itself; therefore it’s not farfetched to say that with the release of Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, Pokémon Go would again lose more active users. In addition, Game Freak has promised that this is both the final main Pokémon game for the Nintendo 3DS and 2Ds family and that this game has far more content than any other Pokémon series ever created before. With that said, many would be focused and preoccupied with this game than with the Pokémon Go app.
Pokémon Go is a fun app and has taken mobile gaming to a new level. Developed by Niantic, it has been downloaded millions of times and provided their users with many content to appease their users of all ages. However, with many of their users belonging to an older generation, the app faces an ever real threat of dying off. Add that to the release of Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, the lifespan of Pokémon Go can be coming to an end even before it has caught up to the current generation.