“Pokemon Go,” the highly anticipated augmented reality (AR) game for the iOS and Android platforms, was supposed to be unveiled at the Games Developers Conference 2016 this March in San Francisco. Niantic, Inc. CEO John Hanke was set to present at the event and showcase the augmented reality game as part of the “Catch ‘Em All: Pokemon Go and Real World Gaming” Summit session. However, the company’s presence at GDC 2016 has just been cancelled and instead will only begin field testing in Japan.
Niantic, Inc., the developer of “Pokemon Go,” currently had its event for GDC 2016 cancelled as listed on the schedule. At the time of writing, the company still hasn’t yet indicated as to why it opted out in showcasing the game. On the other hand, Gamespot managed to get a hold of Niantic, with Hanke himself explaining that the cancellation of the event would make room for developers to prepare the game for its official launch.
“We have decided to forego our GDC talk on Pokémon 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,” said Hanke to Gamespot.
Thankfully, “Pokemon Go” will begin its beta testing phase in Japan later this month, while availability in other countries will soon to come in the following weeks.
“The Pokemon Company and Niantic will be inviting users to field test Pokemon Go in Japan later this month. The Pokemon Go field test program will give a limited number of users early access to the app. These users will have the opportunity to share early feedback and help improve the Pokemon Go experience for everyone prior to public launch,” announced Niantic via an official statement.
If you happen to be in Japan at the moment, you can visit the official website to sign up for the beta test. Otherwise, you’ll just have to wait a couple of weeks until you can catch ’em all with your smartphones. Meanwhile, JRPGs from Nintendo are set to come out this year in the West, so at least you have plenty of things to look forward to this year.