by Graham Pierrepoint
Pokémon GO, believe it or not, is still very much alive and well – while the mania surrounding the monster finding app may have hit its height last summer, there are still thousands of dedicated fans who have been making the most of the various themed events and monster releases over the past few months. There’s even been talk of the developer punishing users suspected of cheating by throwing extremely common Pokémon out into their vicinity – meaning that there really is still a thriving community, even those still willing to cheat to win!
However, it’s not the only Pokémon themed game to have made its way to phones and tablets – and recently, it appears that an interesting twist on the franchise and its creatures has reared its head, introducing fans to a Tamagotchi-style game that’s centred on those much-maligned aquatic floppers, the Magikarp. The game isn’t really what you’d call your traditional Pokémon outing, particularly as it is based around players needing to make their fish jump as high as possible in order to compete against others. As bizarre as it sounds, it’s a game that is quickly picking up steam from player reviews and media interest – and it does seem rather odd that the franchise’s perhaps least-appreciated creature is getting the chance to shine in the sun.
Magikarp Jump – as it is known – is available on both iOS and Android, and is another app associated with the Pokémon brand that Nintendo has no official connection to – but it’s clear that those behind the game may be looking at getting that killer app of the summer in the bag. Can Magikarp Jump replicate the astounding success that the seemingly basic-looking Flappy Bird courted years ago? Perhaps – and maybe the Pokémon brand will bring enough casual players to get tapping.
The Magikarp is a fairly maligned Pokémon in that in the original games, it rarely had much of a purpose – its main attack was famously ‘splash’, a futile move that resulted in the fish out of water simply flopping around on dry land. As Pokémon Go fans will know, however, the lowly fish can in fact evolve into the amazing sea beast Gyarados – but levelling up and catching enough of them really does take some doing – unless you’re near waterfront! Perhaps this will be the summer that more Pokémon Goers finally grab that Gyarados – but if not, there is at least a Magikarp themed game to keep players happy in the meantime.