Niantic responds to community letter regarding Pokémon Go’s pandemic rollbacks
Pokémon Go developer Niantic has responded to an open letter from the Pokémon Go community, a letter that was sent from nearly every big Pokémon and Pokémon Go community identity.
The letter asked Niantic to reconsider rolling back the game’s interaction radius to pre-pandemic levels. So far, the rollback has only happened in the United States and New Zealand, but the company had planned to roll it out as the COVID situation got better in countries. The letter listed the reasons for playing the game safely and socially distanced, personal safety, to keep people out of landmarks and private property, and so people with disabilities could have more access.
The Pokémon GO Community. Practically every single youtuber and prominent player has come together to share this message, so #HearUsNiantic. @NianticLabs @PokemonGoApp @johnhanke, please take heed.— Joe Merrick (@JoeMerrick) August 5, 2021
The initial changes benefited everyone with no drawback pic.twitter.com/zJP5VPKONN
Playing Pokémon Go with an extended radius, it’s just a lot better.
The letter gave Niantic until Monday to respond, and even before that, some of the most prominent Pokémon Go players said they would stop spending money in the game.
But we didn’t have to wait until Monday to get anything out of Niantic. They responded today, not with the rollback everyone was hoping for. But, Instead, Niantic has said they have “heard the feedback” and will be assembling an “internal cross-functional team to develop proposals designed to preserve our mission of inspiring people to explore the world together, while also addressing specific concerns that have been raised regarding interaction distance. “
The promise they will share the findings of this team on September 1st when the next in-game season rolls over. Niantic also says they’ll be reaching out to Pokémon Go community leaders to participate in the dialogue.
We’ll see what happens.