How Pokemon Go Is Celebrating April Fool's Day

Pokemon Go
(Image credit: Niantic Labs)

Niantic Labs is planning on celebrating one of the most hated holidays of the year: April Fool's Day. A lot of trickery and fake news pops out on this day, but Niantic is taking the opportunity to do something special and fun for the Pokemon Go audience.

Over on the official Niantic Labs website, the company announced that there's an all-new graphics engine at work to help give gamers the opportunity to experience a brand new visual aesthetics for the game. What does the graphics engine do? It adds the ability to play Pokemon Go with retro 8-bit graphics.

There's a brief demonstration of the new graphics on display with the header image displaying Pikachu, Squirtle, and Bulbasaur in their 8-bit forms, reminiscent of when Nintendo and the Pokemon Company first introduced the pocket-monster capture series to audiences back in 1996.

Technically the game doesn't look entirely like its old Game Boy counterpart. The sprite work for the combat sequences were actually quite well done in the original Pokemon Blue and Pokemon Red. In fact, it was the high-quality art on such a low-end device like the Game Boy that allowed the video game series to flourish so well, especially when combined with the fact that the television show was absolutely blossoming in popularity at the time.

The graphics update for April Fool's Day has accompanied another recent update, which adds all-new quests to the game. These aren't typical fetch quests or item acquisition quests, they literally see players traveling around, completing various tasks and working toward an end goal set up by the NPCs.

One of the newer quests involves capturing the original Mew. As some of you might remember, there was also an event to acquire a Mewtwo. The event took place in Yokohama, Japan, allowing gamers to get their hands on the Legendary and very rare Pokemon.

The newest quest line is a rather complex series of tasks from Professor Willow, with the first step requiring capturing 10 Pokemon and spinning five PokeStop signs. You'll also have to transfer five Pokemon.

That's just the first step in the quest line of Pokemon Go, which has eight parts. The quest line is something that fans of the mobile game have been requesting since 2016. So it's two years late, but hopefully not too late.

While you partake in the new questing system and attempt to get your hands on your very own Mew Pokemon, you can also check out the game's 8-bit graphics as part of the April Fool's Day event. I'm sure a lot of gamers will enjoy the throwback to the classic Pokemon titles on Nintendo's older systems.

Pokemon Go came out originally in 2016 for iOS and Android devices and it has garnered a strong following of gamers ever since. Niantic Labs have been regularly updating the game with new content and Pokemon, including those from Generation 2 and Generation 3. The latest update added in the aforementioned questing system, which should help keep gamers coming back for more.

Will Usher

Staff Writer at CinemaBlend.