Pokémon Go has inspired legions of gamers across the globe to get off their butts and explore their surroundings. Something amazing about this popularity for location-based games, a genre that has been possible for several years but languished in relative obscurity until now. The adoption of mobile devices with GPS and powerful processors has enabled developers to explore new types of gameplay that blend the digital and analog worlds. Here are 9 Location-based Games.
The genre is still developing, but Pokémon Go‘s popularity has already resulted in some impressive new titles.
Here are the 7 best location-based games for Samsung phones.
1. Zombies, Run!
As the name indicates, Zombies, Run! is an “exergame” with a mission and reward structure as motivation for jogging. With more than one million players, the website boasts that the game is the most popular fitness game ever for smartphones. While zombies, as a whole, it’s hard to define that the theme doesn’t fit the game’s activity perfectly. With more than 200 missions and a base-building metagame, too, this game must help even the most reluctant runners stay committed.
2. Ingress Prime
Released in 2012 by Developer Niantic as a Google subsidy, Ingress Prime — until now — the biggest location-based mobile game. Players are divided into two competing factions of “agents” that fight for control over “portals,” which correspond to real-world points of interest much like Pokémon Go‘s Pokéstops and gyms. Triangulating three portals provides control over the fenced area to that faction, earning them points for as long as the area is held.
The narrative structure for ingress is a sci-fi scenario wherein a newly discovered form of Exotic Matter (XM) sparks a heated debate about how it should be used for humanity. Because of their direct association, this game shares a lot in common with Pokémon Go, but the former features more robust game and social elements, along with a passionate community that’s already invested years. The game has massive changes over the years, so much so that the developers decided to rename the entire project to Ingress Prime.
3. Harry Potter: Wizards Unite
This is as popular as traditional Pokémon Go. Developed by Niantic, Wizards Unite relies on the same equation as its sibling but puts a unique Harry Potter twist on the action. You’ll be wandering around your city, but instead of catching Pokémon, you’ll be searching for Foundables. These you can find in the form of memories, creatures, or other objects from the Harry Potter world that have been possessed by evil magic. Players fight with these forces by tracing patterns on the screen with their finger, some of which become difficult at higher levels. It’s free-to-play and can be found on Android.
This is an IRL Monopoly game. You start with a generous loan of in-game currency that you invest to become real estate moguls. You buy a cluster of local buildings, landmarks, and businesses and then collect rent based on how many people check-in at the location via Facebook and Foursquare. Players can also trade and upgrade their properties to increase their value, competing with one another to be the biggest tycoon around.
Unlike other games on this list, this game isn’t a discrete product from a specific developer, rather a huge, community-based activity. In many ways, it’s the ancestor of all of these other location-based games, since it introduced in 2000 when the GPS standard was first opened to the general public.
The players hide GPS-enabled containers all over the world and then other people use the coordinates to search them and see what they possess. Some might contain a logbook that players sign, but some contain more exciting secrets.
Community standards indicate that players find something in a cache, they replace it with something of equal or greater value. There are more feature-rich, premium options available with this game. While it may not have the elaborate metagame of something like Ingress, geocaching has a vibrant community that’s far more established than any other game on this list.
6. Minecraft Earth
In this game, you cast spells and fight a battle with these forces by tracing patterns on the screen with your finger, some of which become difficult at higher levels. Fans of the wizarding world owe it to themselves to give this location-based game a download. You can download this free-to-play game on your Android.
If you are looking for something a bit more strategic, resources is a much more complex game than others on this list. This is also one of the 9 Location-based Games. In this game, you will attempt to simulate a massive, player-driven economy. You’ll scour the real world for resource repositories while also managing your inventory of coal, clay, oil, and other commodities.
You can also attack other players and try to loot their hard-earned resources instead. No matter how you acquire them, you’ll want to amass a silo of these items to upgrade your operations and make the in-game news headlines. This game is not for the faint of heart and does have a bit of a learning curve, but there’s nothing else like it on the market.
8. Jurassic World Alive
This game is not as popular as Wizards Unite or Pokémon Go. Still, it has a dedicated following of players and sufficient content to keep you busy for years. Fans of the series will see iconic beasts that they will level up, breed, and battle in real-time matches. This is one of the 9 Location-based Games.
You’ll have to roam your world to find these prehistoric creatures and collect their DNA, the main driving force behind the game. While combat, evolution, and breeding, there’s a lot to wrap your head around. Jurassic World Alive does a great job of walking you through its various technicalities and is pretty easy for beginners to pick up.
9. Dragon Quest Walk
This game is available just in Japan currently but can be played elsewhere through some technical shenanigans, Dragon Quest Walk has been gaining traction since its release in late 2019. This is one of the 9 Location-based Games.
At the beginning of 2020, the game had already collected over $150 million in revenue, despite being available in just one country. Many players from the fields of Dragon Quest roam the virtual genre fight golems, slimes, and other franchise favorites, as you might expect based on the game’s popularity. You can find rewards on the journeys that you can use to customize your home base.