The developer of Pokémon GO, Niantic, has officially announced a series of updates and plans for the future in response to the community protests of Pokemon GO players against the handling of updates related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
With the announcement that the interaction radius for PokéStops and Gyms will be maintained at 80 meters, instead of 40 meters, Niantic also informed that they aim to release season bonuses on a global level, not on any individual country. It has also set out plans to stay in closer touch with players and communicate through developer diaries and conversations with Pokemon GO community leaders.
Starting in October, Niantic will publish a developer diary every month that explains the company’s current priorities, events to be attended, and features planned for the mobile AR game. Not only that, the Known Issues page on the Pokémon GO website will be updated to allow visibility of the current status of bugs.
In protest of the reduced distance of PokéStops and Gyms whose interaction radius is reduced, Niantic spoke with 30 Pokemon GO community leaders from around the world. Niantic intends to continue this conversation on a regular basis.
In a statement released by Niantic, executive producer Steve Wang said:
“The lack of communication about the PokéStop and Gym interaction radius was not handled well by us, and it was an incredible learning experience about how we can engage better with our players in the future.”
In addition to the distance for PokéStops and Gym will remain 80 meters, Wang also hopes to invite players to go to the real world:
“We still believe in the importance of finding interesting places and things in the real world, and we don’t want to forget it. My team and I really want to develop new ways that motivate and reward players to explore and exercise in the real world. As a result of the task force, we have a variety of new ideas to explore and we look forward to sharing more in the coming months. ”
Niantic’s experience with adjusting distance settings for multiple countries in response to country lockouts has prompted it to abandon a country -by -country approach and opt for change globally. Starting with the Season of Mischief bonus update, all bonuses will be set at the global level and linked directly to the season in the game.
At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, Niantic made several updates to the Pokemon Go game to make it easier to play during lockdown conditions. This update was enthusiastically welcomed by the community and players as it was not only allowed to play during quarantine, but also opened up the game for players and other groups who had previously struggled to be able to try to play Pokemon GO.
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