UPDATE: Sorry guys, seems like the sources are not as official as some sites claimed they are. So there is no official announcement yet, but let's keep our hopes up! I'll leave the original article here as a reference. I apologize if this got you overexcited. :)
You asked for it, and Niantic is delivering it. The creators behind the immensely popular smart phone app, Pokemon Go, have started to work on a new version of the game for your next favorite fandom.
Ladies and gentlemen, Harry Potter Go is coming.
After the initial release of Pokemon Go, it didn't take fans long to promote ideas similar to this one, which enables old-school Pokemon lovers to embrace their inner Ash Ketchum.
For those living under a rock, Pokemon Go lets its user act as the "Pokemon Trainer" to catch Pikachus, Squirtles, and Evees in an augmented reality (Pokemon appear in live settings via phone cameras). The app has already been downloaded by 50 million users (and counting) worldwide.
Naturally, Harry Potter was the obvious franchise for Niantic to set their sights on. True enthusiasts even started a petition to Warner Brothers and Pokemon Go creators to make Harry Potter Go a reality.
Well, it seems those 36,000 signatures paid off. Rumors stated that Marcus Figueroa, Niantic’s senior developer, *officially announced Harry Potter Go in a recent interview stating:
"We have acquired the rights for the app. The demand for this title was absolutely insane, so we figured we’d give it a shot. If we’re lucky we might see a launch by early 2017, but it’s hard to tell this early in the project."
It seems the overwhelming success of Harry Potter and the demands of its unparalleled fans sparked a serious new sensation. For those who haven't had the chance to indulge in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal's theme parks now have the opportunity to use their virtual wands in their own homes.
Can you imagine seeing the world around you transformed into Diagon Alley or Hogwarts with hippogriffs, mandrakes, and pixies roaming about?
What Do We Want to See in the New App?
Could the North American school, Ilvermorny School of Witchcraft be included? Ideas behind the new game are still being created, and it seems only fair that we give the brilliant developers an insight into what we would like to see in the game.
Ashtyn Hannon, who started the Harry Potter Go petition, had some ideas for the game and lobbied that it would be a great marketing tool for the upcoming movie Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Take a look at some of the design concepts she mentioned in the petition:
"With Harry Potter Go, you could search for the seven Horcruxes, and then for swords, and basilisk fangs to destroy them."
Obviously, we aren't going to find Horcruxes lying about all over the world, but the creatures of the Wizarding World could help us along the way. Instead of "catching" the creatures like in Pokemon Go, users could battle them for useful wizarding tools like Galleons or Portkeys.
"In a Harry Potter augmented reality game, you could cast spells in real life. Accio Firebolt! And have a wizard duel with your friends, expelliarmus could disable their app for a few seconds! Who is your second?"
Wizarding landmarks such as schools, Weasley's Wizarding Wheezes, and Ollivanders could act as the "stops" where users can battle their friends for house points!
Some other ideas:
Wand / House Sorting
Perhaps it would be best to let wizards and witches choose their houses (similar to choosing your own team in Pokemon Go). Fans seem pretty adamant about keeping their delegated houses confirmed on Pottermore.
And, as we all know, the wand chooses the wizard. In Harry Potter Go, users would find out if their wand core is made of unicorn hair or dragon heartstring!
For those of you who haven't read the books, the Sphinx appeared during the third task of the Triwizard Tournament in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Harry had to answer riddles given by the Sphix in order to progress further into the maze.
Harry Potter Go would incorporate this neglected character into the game to quiz users on the wizarding world. Winner would get house points? Horcrux clues? You decide!
Potions could be used similar to the way Incense and Potions are used in Pokemon Go. A love potion may not do the trick, but a dose of Felix Felicis' Liquid luck is sure to get users closer to finding Horcruxes.
[*Disclaimer: Sources provided in this article are from misleading sites. Source provided by unofficial representatives. We apologize for the misinformation. Check out the HPGO petitions to make it happen!]