Pokemon Go GDC Presentation Canceled and Here's Why

The 30-minute event has been scrapped, and developer Niantic has now explained why.


[UPDATE] Niantic CEO John Hanke explained in a statement to GameSpot today that it canceled the GDC event so developer Niantic could get Pokemon Go ready for launch.

"We have decided to forego our GDC talk on Pokemon Go in order to focus on getting the product ready for beta test and launch. As much as we hate to disappoint those in the industry attending GDC, we feel our time and energy right now are best spent on making sure every aspect of the product is where we want it to be," he said.

The original story is below.

The Pokemon Go presentation at the Game Developers Conference this month has been canceled. That's according to the event's page, which states the 30-minute event is no longer going to happen, though no explanation as to why was provided.

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The talk, "Catch 'Em All: 'Pokemon GO' and Real World Gaming," was to be led by John Hanke, founder and CEO of developer Niantic. He was going to talk about how Niantic "developed a unique vision for delivering a mobile Pokemon experience that gets would-be trainers into the outdoors."

GameSpot has contacted Niantic in an attempt to get more details on why the briefing was canceled.

Pokemon Go will let players catch, train, and battle monsters in the real world, though Niantic has yet to provide any specifics on how this will work. Users will be able to play the game with an optional device called Pokemon Go Plus. Much like a smartwatch, it can be worn on the wrist and used to execute in-game actions such as catching a Pokemon. The device will connect to smartphones using Bluetooth, and will flash its LED and vibrate to notify players about nearby Pokemon.

Pokemon Go is expected to be available on the App Store and Google Play in 2016 as a free download. The game will also have in-app purchases.

Niantic, which spun off from Google in 2015, raised $20 million from a round of investors that included The Pokemon Company, Google, and Nintendo last year. Just last week, Niantic raised a further $5 million, according to GI.biz.

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