Captain Blimey Seeks to Plunder the Pokémon GO Craze
Instead of stalking make-believe monsters, players in Captain Blimey hunt for treasure within their immediate vicinity based on GPS-enabled maps. When a treasure chest is located, players claim it by touching the loot in the app's augmented reality camera view.
Developed by 9Logic Technologies, the game also offers several consumable trinkets, available by in-app purchases ranging from $0.99 to $7.99, that modify game play, including a crystal ball that locates nearby treasure and a parrot who can fetch the booty so that players don't have to walk right within its 10 meter radius.
"Our design and development team invested thousands of hours in the creative process. The passion infused in the game is evident from the imaginative user experience to fine-tuned game play," Srikant Vemparala, President of 9Logic Technology, in a news release.
Where Captain Blimey deviates from Pokémon GO is in its treasure hunts. Here, players use geographic clues to locate treasure chests around the globe for cash prizes. As demonstrated in the game's tutorial, players do not have to be present to claim the chest; rather, they can enter the clue's location by name or coordinates to "teleport" to the location.
Captain Blimey motivates players to move and be active through its competitive game rewards such as cash prizes or gift cards. In designing the game, we solved the problem of geographic barriers in treasure hunts. Friends from Seattle to New York City can play together, whether working together to solve a treasure hunt or indulging in a friendly competition.
To promote the launch of the game, 9Logic is hosting a treasure hunt in Seattle on May 20 starting at 11 a.m. local time. Spanning six neighborhoods, winners in each area can claim a $500 gift card to participating businesses, such as Amazon, Nordstrom, Delta Air Lines, The Home Depot and Target.
The developer has also enlisted Kevin Harrington, the infomercial inventor most recently known for his role on reality show Shark Tank, to endorse the game.
"A successful entrepreneur over the last 40 years, I am keen to identify and capitalize on the trends illuminating mobile gaming's role in technology and social engagement online," said Harrington. "I expect the game's inclusive platform and AR will make Captain Blimey incredibly popular."
While the game bears a resemblance to Pokémon GO, its concept is more similar to another GPS-based AR game. Snatch, launched earlier this year in the United Kingdom for iOS and Android, also allows players to hunt for virtual parcels that can convert to real-life prizes, though other players can steal claimed parcels (hence the name). The game made its (debut in the United States at SXSW, though a wider expansion stateside is forthcoming.