Aquamarine is Niantic’s Augmented Reality Tamagotchi

Niantic’s next game is Peridot, a virtual pet game reminiscent of everything from Tamagotchi to Neopets. It’s Niantic’s latest attempt to recreate the stellar success of Pokemon Go, this time with an experience geared strongly toward casual audiences.

Developed for two and a half years, Peridot is Niantic’s first original drug since Ingress. It is based on breeding, breeding, and playing with mystical creatures called aquamarine, which awaken after thousands of years.

Like other Niantic games, Peridot will be built around exploring the real world with your virtual pets. Using Nianatic’s Lightship ARDK technology, Peridots can recognize different terrain and forage for different items depending on whether they’re on grass, water or sand. The gameplay will also change depending on different weather patterns, and Niantic says it’s working on the snow app as well.

Aquamarine – Advertising Photo Gallery

Aquamarine will display daily tasks including petting, feeding, and walking your creature. An individual peridot will also have its own desires, such as going to a certain destination or eating a blue tomato. There will be no consequences if you neglect your peridot, so they will never die if you get busy and decide to do something else for a while. Instead, Niantic wants to reward players for coming back and playing more often.

“To be completely honest, we looked at a lot of pets in the games. Our game design team was playing most of them while iterating,” says producer Ziah Fogel.

Peridots can be bred together upon reaching maturity, with each peridot differing in likes, dislikes, abilities, and appearance. Individual archetypes include ‘unicorn’ and ‘clown fish’, along with more esoteric themes like ‘clown fish’. Reproduction will occur in special nests centered around certain archetypes, with some being able to change a single feature, others being able to change a set of features.

Niantic says some of the archetypes will be particularly rare and prized among gamers. Each Peridot will have its own unique DNA, generated with a combination of hand-generated assets and procedural generation.

While Peridot will be less concerned with raids and battles than Pokémon Go, and more about raising a series of virtual pets, Niantic says it does its best to take into account the needs of rural players.

“It’s something we’ve been thinking about a lot,” Vogel says. “This game in particular, while asking you to go to the point of interest [in-game areas based on real-world landmarks]especially for the breeding loop, there are other items that can be done without a point of interest.”

They cite feeding, foreplay, and training as elements that do not require POI activation. Additionally, Vogel says Niantic is looking at other ways to help rural players, such as bringing in floating items.

Niantic also addressed microtransactions – another thorny topic among gamers. Niantic says aquamarine will offer a “variety” of in-app purchases, including the ability to make organisms grow faster, or have an easier time breeding in a particular habitat or place of interest.

The balance of progress against microtransactions has sometimes frustrated Pokémon Go players, but it also earned an impressive $1 billion in 2020. Somehow, microtransactions were given to Peridot.

Either way, Peridot is perhaps Niantic’s chance to capture the continuing appeal of a Pokemon on his own terms without feeling like an off-brand clone. It will be available in select markets later this month in both the App Store and Google Play. Niantic did not elaborate on which markets it would be available in.

“It’s completely different [from Pokémon Go]Vogel says. We believe Peridot will appeal to a wide range of audiences. “

Kat Bailey is IGN’s Senior News Editor as well as co-host for Nintendo Voice Chat. Do you have a tip? Send her a message directly at the_katbot.