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By 4 December 2017 | Categories: news

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You might have played Pokémon Go, but do you remember developers Niantic’s augmented reality (AR) game before that? Called Ingress and launched in 2012, it certainly wasn’t the smash hit that Pokémon Go was, but it was popular enough (20 million downloads can’t be wrong) to put the company on the map. Bolstered by their success, Niantic is now working on a revamp of Ingress called Ingress Prime.

Talking to The Verge, Niantic CEO John Hanke notes that basically everything from the 2012 original will change, including the graphics, story and the tech that runs the game. Hanke says that Pokémon Go has taught the company a number of lessons, and promised that these will be used to improve Ingress Prime.

The game, slated for a 2018 release, has a revamped storyline, but the narrative should be familiar to those who played the original. It involves the discovery of “exotic matter” that seems to be used by Shapers, a supposed alien race. Players, distributed in one of two teams, are tasked with capturing certain significant portals.

The big changes to the game are on the technical side, with the Prime moved to the same platform as Pokémon Go. Thus, it makes use of Apple’s ARMit and Google’s ARCore, both aimed at an enhance AR experience. Improvements on the graphic side are also forthcoming, with a much larger team available to work on the look and feel of the game.

If you catch the teaser below, you won’t get much in terms of gameplay but rather what feels like a B-movie background to Ingress Prime. You will forgive us then if we’re not too excited about the purported anime series that Hanke mentions which will be used to further expand on the Ingress Prime world. When this will be released or through which channels were not revealed.

Whether or not Ingress Prime will be anywhere near as popular as Pokémon Go remains to be seen. It will also share the spotlight with another AR title coming from the Niantic stable in 2018, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite. If the success of the books and movies are anything to go by, Ingress Prime might just play second fiddle to Harry and the rest of the Hogwarts gang.

Check out the live-action video for Ingress Prime below.

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