Niantic, the developer of the well-known Pokémon Go, has announced Pikmin Bloom, its latest AR game. The game was teased earlier this year, but there have been few details up to this point. The game will be available on mobile devices in Australia and Singapore starting Tuesday, then on phones worldwide in the coming days. Like Pokémon Go, Pikmin Bloom will be free to download, but there are few similarities between the two titles.
While Pokémon Go is focused on competition and the franchise’s classic “gotta catch ’em all” mentality, Pikmin Bloom is more about exploration and savoring everyday life. Players will be able to interact with a variety of Pikmin in AR as they walk throughout their day. The in-game map looks somewhat like Pokémon Go‘s interface, but instead of finding gyms and Poké Stops, players will plant Pikmin along the paths they’re walking on. The Pikmin grow into flowers based on how many real-world steps the player has taken: The more they walk, the more flowers will grow. After the flowers have grown, players can pick them to create even more Pikmin.
Once Pikmin have grown, they can collect items, outfits, and other goodies that allow the player to plant even more flowers. Players will also be able to collaborate with others to create gardens and complete challenges. The goal, as expressed in the game’s trailer, is to fill the (virtual) world with flowers, which can be done by both planting them yourself and walking with your Pikmin.
At the end of each day, players can record what they did in an in-game journal and look back at the memories they’ve made while walking. The game will also keep track of the total number of steps taken while playing. It’s not quite the same as a regular Pikmin game, but the massive and widespread success of Pokémon Go will hopefully give Bloom a chance to find its player base.
Pikmin Bloom will be available on the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store starting November 2.