First revealed by a Japanese Pokemon site, the title of the game translates to Pokemon Say Tap?, and according to the site it’s scheduled to release this summer in Japan as a free download for iPhone/iPad and Android devices.
Though gameplay screens have yet to be released, the official description indicates that it’s a rhythm-based game where you tap on Pokemon trading cards to the beat of a song from the Pokemon Black & White anime series.
So far, there’s been no word on a European or North American release.
Analysis: For those surprised that Nintendo would release an official Pokemon game on iOS and Android rather than its own portable devices, keep in mind that this is not the first time Nintendo has released a Pokemon game on a non-Nintendo device. In 2006, Square Enix developed a free Pokemon app called Pokemate for Japanese mobile phones (more specifically, the NTT DoCoMo FOMO 900i series), where the Pokemon had to be taken care of, similar to a virtual pet simulation. Perhaps a tad perplexing is that this new game is free — something that Nintendo President Satoru Iwata is not a fan of. Also head-scratch worthy is the fact that many view the iPhone and iPod Touch as direct competitors with Nintendo DS and 3DS. Seeing as how the 3DS has sold below expectations, you would think that anything remotely related to Pokemon would grace the floundering handheld instead.
At this point, there’s no telling if the app will suffer the same fate as other Japanese Nintendo games, but I wouldn’t be surprised if hardcore Pokemon fans find a way to download the app outside of Japan, especially being that it’s a cinch to make a Japanese iTunes account, which would make it possible to get the game into foreign markets without much effort.
Hm, a free Pokemon game on a device not made by Nintendo? Yep, I’m stumped.