Niantic CEO says Pokemon GO is “thriving”, talks thinking behind new features
At Pokemon GO Fest in Chicago, The Guardian was able to speak with Niantic CEO John Hanke. Hanke discussed the current status of the game, among other topics.
Reflecting on how far Pokemon GO has come since its launch two years ago, Hanke said that the mobile title has a “thriving, strong user base of people that are not here for the fad, but because they love the core values of the game.” He said:
“I don’t think I could have imagined anything about the last two years. But it’s been great. I guess what’s most satisfying two years in, is seeing this thriving, strong user base of people that are not here for the fad, but because they love the core values of the game. Which is why we did it. It got lost in the first two months of Pokémon Go craziness. I wasn’t sure if people liked us for who we really were, or if they were just there because everybody else was.”
Hanke also discussed Niantic’s approach to implementing new features:
“It’s important that you have a vision of where you want to go. You can’t just be subject to the whims of what the public expresses. We’ve always tried to break new ground: things like trading and player v player combat, which is still not in the game but is something we think belongs in it. It feels like we are finally on a nice, regular cadence.
Our guidelines are that people should be encouraged to get out and explore their community, get exercise and interact with other people in the real world. Those are what we think distinguishes our games from others.”