July 7, 2020 We’ve updated this story with details of today’s New Zealand soft launch.
Pokémon Go creator Niantic has soft launched its latest title, Catan: World Explorers, on Android in New Zealand. This follows last week’s reveal via Eurogamer. Catan: World Explorers follows Niantic’s previous releases, Ingress, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite, and, of course, Pokémon Go, and is based on the massive board game Catan, which challenges you to collect a bunch of resources, like brick, lumber, grain, ore, and wood, and use them to build your own cities and landmarks.
Rather than just play against your grumpy family members at holidays though, Catan: World Explorers pits you against the entire world. Much like all of Niantic’s games so far, this is a deeply social experience, which sees you and all nearby players work together, and against each other, for world dominance. Often physically in person, too, using the power of AR to bring your creations to life.
You’ll trade with friends, strangers, and NPCs alike for what you need, then construct buildings, roads, and more for Victory Points. These are a measure of your success, and you can see how you’re doing compared to the competition on the local and global stage by checking out the leaderboards.
If large-scale multiplayer isn’t your cup of tea, you can also participate in custom personal matches against friends. No matter how you choose to play though, this will prove familiar to both Catan die-hards and Pokémon Go experts, who just want to see what all of the fuss is about.
If you’re interested, you can grab Catan: World Explorers right now on Google Play provided that you’re based in New Zealand. If not, you can pre-register for it on the brand new official website. That way, you can grab it as soon as it arrives on your preferred app store. If you’re impatient for something to play, check out our list of the best location-based games on mobile.