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Niantic shows us the future of AR gaming with Codename: Neon

Niantic's proof-of-concept game Codename: Neon is like Pokémon Go on steroids. Real-world mobile multi-player, here we come.

Published onJune 28, 2018

A screenshot of gameplay in Niantic's Codename: Neon.
  • Niantic showed off its new proof-of-concept game Codename: Neon in a YouTube video.
  • The game allows players to compete with each other in a real-world environment using augmented reality gameplay.
  • Although just a concept for now, Neon could represent the future of mobile gaming.

Niantic, for now, is primarily known as the company behind the mobile gaming megahit Pokémon Go. However, the company’s ambitions don’t stop with putting Pikachu on a sidewalk outside your local supermarket.

According to a new feature on CNET, Niantic is developing technology which likely will change the way we play video games.

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If you think about it, Pokémon Go is a straightforward game: you walk around collecting Pokémon as they appear on your phone. But the augmented reality aspects of Pokémon Go set the stage for bigger and more immersive gaming experiences not just by yourself, but with other people.

That’s what Codename: Neon – a proof-of-concept video game demo developed by Niantic – is all about.

Pictures speak a thousand words, so check out this YouTube video clip below to see what Codename: Neon is all about:

Although the players look kind of goofy running around a room with their phones a few inches from their face, you can’t deny that the gameplay footage looks incredibly cool. The fact that all players are interacting with each other in-game opens up millions of awesome possibilities for co-op gaming.

According to Niantic, it is currently working with major wireless carriers to ensure that the technology works that will allow different phones to play within the same game at the same time.

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In the article, representatives for Niantic explain that creating its own games – like Pokémon Go and the upcoming Harry Potter: Wizards Unite – is only part of its overall strategy. It intends to generate AR technology that powers games like Codename: Neon and then give that tech to other developers.

If this strategy works, it could put Niantic at the forefront of the future of gaming as we know it. This would take online multi-player gaming out of the home and into the streets, which – let’s face it – is the next logical step.

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