The Future Is Mobile

So, the Pokemon Go trailer is making the rounds. If you haven’t seen it, it’s here, and I’ve embedded it below.


Curious about the future of MMOs? I’m going to go ahead and say you’re looking at it, right there. It’s tech and concepts that have been around for a while, but it looks like they’re being polished to a mirror shine, and given a context that’s incredibly compelling. Look at what the video is promising– PvE (catching pokemon out in the world), PvP (trainer battles), and endgame raids (the final scene). It’s the essence of MMOs distilled into a mobile platform, and I have a suspicion it’s going to be massive.

Don’t believe me? That video has been up for less than 24 hours and it’s pushing a million hits. Pokemon has an absolutely enormous audience at a really broad age range– basically if you’re likely to own a smartphone, you’re probably familiar with Pokemon. The smartphone gaming market dwarfs any other gaming market you care to name, and it’s way, way more inclusive than other gaming spheres. You’re looking at an MMO that’s able to tap a market that dwarfs anything else out there.

The trailer is brilliant, too. Take a moment to watch it, if you haven’t:

Check out the people it’s showing. Opening shot of the world. We get some rapid cuts to a huge variety of people– a 20-something businessman, a dad and his kid, a studious looking woman, a bunch of teenagers, then a giant crowd at the end. The only child is the one playing with the dad– note: playing WITH the dad. This is a game where everyone can play together, friends with each other, parents with children, people from all walks of life, and everyone’s having a good time. There’s not a lot of advertising, especially in the game sphere, that promises that.

Just to further push that whole “this is a neo-MMO” concept, the trailer manages to capture that wonder of exploring as a newbie, the excitement of PvP, the fun of meeting new people in-game, and the tension and exultation of raid bosses in a three-minute trailer. The structure is identical to the trailers for a ton of other MMOs, down to the order in which everything is portrayed.

I’m pretty excited to see where this goes. It’s obviously a bit early to throw around words like “wow-killer”, nor is that even a meaningful concept anymore, but I have a suspicion that this is the MMO future we’re going to be looking at. I’m honestly pretty excited about it; it goes back to the roots of what got me into MMOs in the first place. I hope it takes off.

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