The summer of 2016 was the summer of Pokémon Go, and I loved every silly moment of it.
Nothing quite compared to the feeling of strolling around a shopping precinct or a park and coming across – and catching! – a wild Charmander or Squirtle.
Likewise, nothing was quite as disappointing as catching Rattata after Rattata, without an uncommon Pokémon in sight. (For some reason, which I hope does not reflect badly on me, my house was always full of them!)
These were heady days, filled with a collective childlike excitement. I knew one lad who would tell his fiancé he was working late, only to spend an extra half an hour walking the long way home in search of rare Pokémon.
Over 95,000 Trainers from all over the world joined us in Sentosa, Singapore, for our first #PokemonGOSafariZone event in Southeast Asia. Thank you for making this a truly epic event, Trainers! https://t.co/cfRovtlvx3 pic.twitter.com/kTJgOfYlCM
— Pokémon GO (@PokemonGoApp) May 1, 2019
But then the giddiness subsided, and – although there are still plenty of keen Pokémon Go players out there – many of us swapped our goals of catching ’em all for more so-called ‘grown-up’ pursuits.
However, those living in Australia and New Zealand could soon be getting hooked on another game which has all the components which made Pokémon Go so goddamn addictive, with the sort of premise which will delight Harry Potter fans no end.
This game, entitled Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, involves players being recruited to the Statute of Secrecy Task Force, where they will encounter – and attempt to defeat – the various nasties of the Wizarding world.
Find out more about Harry Potter: Wizards Unite in the following clip:
Niantic have given the following statement:
Witches and wizards in Australia and New Zealand are now invited to participate in the ‘Harry Potter: Wizards Unite’ beta co-developed and co-published by WB Games San Francisco and Niantic, Inc., under the Portkey Games label.
The premise of this location-based AR game is as follows:
The Ministry is looking for witches and wizards willing to roll up their sleeves and volunteer to save the wizarding world from the Calamity.
As a member of the Statute of Secrecy Task Force (a new task force formed in partnership between the Ministry of Magic and the International Confederation of Wizards) you will hone lightning fast wand reflexes, an ability to sniff out the faintest whiff of magical disorder from afar, and proficiency in advanced casting of multiple spells.
The Harry Potter: Wizards Unite beta has now gone live in Australia and New Zealand, so those Down Under shouldn’t be surprised if they start to see passersby shrieking spells at invisible foes in the coming days…
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.