Gamers the world over are cautious about news that springs up around the first of April. Yes, the infamous prankster holiday, April Fools’ Day, has claimed plenty of victims in the past, and there’s a high chance that it’ll do the same again in 2014. While readers prepare to remain skeptical about any alleged news that surfaces tomorrow, Google and Nintendo have released their prank a little early — much to the delight of Pokemon fans.
What sets this joke aside from the impending barrage that should be hitting shortly is that Google has actually partnered with Nintendo to allow Google Maps users to explore the world in search of Pocket Monsters. The end result isn’t anything quite as awesome as what the above video implies, but it does equate to a fun little distraction for Pokemon aficionados.
To access the newly added Poke-aspect of Google Maps, all fans have to do is click the ‘Search’ bar and an option to ‘Start Game’ will appear with a blue Pokeball next to it. Once they’ve selected that, the Google Maps app will whisk users away to a Pokemon Lab (better known as Google HQ) where trainers can kick-start their journey to become a Pokemon Master.
Despite featuring a bevy of monsters from several generations, there are only a total of 150 for users to catch and add to their Google-powered Pokedex. This doesn’t come close to touching the 718 (which will soon be jumping to 719 with the arrival of Diancie) that are currently available within Pokemon X and Y, but it’ll be more than enough to keep fans distracted for the duration of the event.
Google claims that the promotion will run until April 2, at which point the Pokemon portion of Google Maps will likely come to a close, but it’s currently available for anyone that’s updated the app on their Android or iPhone. Admittedly, this is more of a fun offering than a gag, although trying to catch ’em all is sure to frustrate many since these fictions beasts are scattered all over the map.
What do you think of the April Fools’ partnership between Ninty and Google? Have you been trying to catch all 150 Pokemon?
Follow Riley on Twitter @TheRileyLittle.