Niantic has revealed that Pokémon Go field tests will be starting in Japan.
The tests begin in March, and sign-ups are now available for Japanese residents here. Niantic promises to open up field tests in other regions so that they can also test out the game sometime in the future. Of course, if you are not in Japan now, even if you try to register via VPN, you won’t be able to participate in the field tests.
If you are a Japanese resident, you will also need a Google account and/or Gmail address. Alternately, you can log in with your account for Niantic’s other game, Ingress. You also need to either have an iPhone 5 and above or an Android version 4.3 and above. Not all registrants will be allowed in; Niantic will go through them via lottery and email them later when they are approved to participate.
Pokémon Go is releasing in 2016 on Android and iPhone. The Pokémon Company first revealed the game on September 2015. Pokémon Go will be a free-to-play augmented reality game like Ingress, which will allow players to find and catch Pokémon in real life locations. Your phone will function as the Pokéradar, and will also help you find and interact with other Pokémon Go players. They also revealed its official Bluetooth accessory, the Pokémon Go Plus. The Pokémon Go Plus will give players a more physically interactive experience. It will vibrate when it finds a Pokémon nearby, and allow you to simulate actions like catching and releasing Pokémon. Niantic have raised $ 30 million from Google, The Pokémon Company, and Nintendo, to fund development of the game.