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Niantic launching limited-time Pokémon Go event to promote Detective Pikachu Returns

Pokémon Go gets sleuthing one day ahead of the new Nintendo Switch title’s release
Niantic launching limited-time Pokémon Go event to promote Detective Pikachu Returns

Niantic’s Pokémon Go is no stranger to promotional events, specifically in the context of cross-promoting with other Pokémon media like the main series games on consoles. It was only last month, for example, that Go introduced new creatures from last year’s Scarlet and Violet games on Switch.

The latest promotional event is a little bit different, echoing a campaign from 2019.

On October 5, Detective Pikachu is returning to Go…

Two games with one promotion

With the upcoming release of the aptly named Detective Pikachu Returns on Nintendo Switch, wild Pikachu will be appearing in Go wearing detective hats inspired by the electrifying investigator’s headwear.

Whilst this is clear promotion for the new game, and iterating on the mouse detective’s appearance in Go when the Detective Pikachu movie released in 2019, it also serves as promotion for Go itself; fans of the Detective Pikachu series may well give Go a go once they catch word of his likeness in-game.

Other Pokémon featuring in Go’s event include Slowpoke wearing a hat, Growlithe, Alolan Exeggutor, Cutiefly, Snivy, Rowlet and more, with each of these Pokémon expected to appear at some point in Detective Pikachu Returns, naturally. There are also elusive shiny variants available of most monsters, giving players an extra reason to get outside searching.

Notably, Go’s event starts one day before Detective Pikachu Returns launches, giving fans of both one full day to devote to mobile before they get to gaming on Switch. Again, this also likely plays into the tactic to land the Switch title in more hands - bringing attention to mobile players that a new game is on the horizon.

"Pikachu wearing a detective hat will be appearing in Pokémon Go for a limited time! Celebrate the release of Detective Pikachu Returns on Nintendo Switch by completing themed Timed Research in the Detective Pikachu Returns Event," Niantic posted on its blog. "Trainers can enjoy surprise encounters with Pikachu wearing a detective hat once per day by taking snapshots."

Niantic is among our Top 50 Mobile Game Makers, and with its latest release Monster Hunter Now reaching five million downloads in a week, the stage is set for the next big thing in the world of AR.