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Niantic’s Mike Quigley on Pokemon GO: the effect of seasons and weather, the game’s future, more

Posted on November 10, 2016 by (@OnePunchMaz) in Mobile, News

gameindustry.biz published an interview today with Mike Quigley, the chief marketing officer at Niantic. Naturally, the interview centered around Pokemon GO, Niantic’s biggest success so far. You can read the full interview here; below are a couple of interesting tidbits:

On how real-life seasons and weather affect a game like Pokemon GO:

“We’ll monitor this stuff, and come this time next year, we might start to think about doing things for the likes of Germany, the UK and North America, who are going through their winter.”

“A lot of people give us credit for the summer release timing, but we also saw strong pick-ups in places like Australia and Brazil, when it was winter for them. There’s a lot of seasonal dynamics we need to consider. It’s a variable that most developers don’t need to worry about. Hopefully we can learn and figure out ways to keep consumers engaged. Maybe there will be other spikes in corresponding glove and hat and coat sales.

On how the company is going to expand after the success of Pokemon GO:

“We expect the team to double in size over the course of the next year. But that’s us going from about 70 right now, to being within the 140 to 150 range by the middle of next year. We want to be mindful of cost and how we scale. We are growing but doing so responsibly and carefully, so that we don’t get ahead of ourselves.”

“Most people don’t know this, but this is our CEO John Hanke’s fourth start-up. With that experience, he is very, very thoughtful about how, when and where we invest. We are brutal in terms about our prioritisation of where we are going to add funds, staff and resources, and also identify places where we are going to hold-off and see how the business is doing. Pokémon Go turned out to be beyond our wildest expectations, but if it had just gone mediocre, we’d still would have been ok. It is a marathon, not a sprint. We have the patience to take that long view.”

On Pokemon GO’s future:

“But we are still locked arm-in-arm with The Pokémon Company on Pokémon Go and working together for the foreseeable future. It’s been a fantastic partnership.”

“Now we have come out of the tidal wave of craziness that happened in the summer, and people look at the small things and some of the bigger things that we have launched, or will launch, hopefully that gives them confidence that we will continue to invest in Pokémon Go, and hopefully we can keep a lot of those people engaged. Some will lapse out, that’s the nature of mobile free-to-play and we’ve all seen those curves. So if that happens, it wouldn’t surprise us. But we are not really focused on that. We are focused on making it a great game, continuing to invest in it, and the consumers can decide.”

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