Niantic acquires UK AR developer Sensible Object

Pokémon Go developer Niantic has acquired augmented reality developer Sensible Object. The acquisition, which was completed for an undisclosed sum, will see the studio rebranded as Niantic London.

The company – perhaps best known for its tabletop game Beasts of Balance – will form the core of Niantic’s new HQ, along with staff from Matrix Mill, a spin-out company from UCL that specialises in “applying artificial intelligence and machine vision research to solve industry problems” which was acquired by Niantic last year.

“To the players of Sensible Object’s games, thank you for all your support and feedback!” said Alex Fleetwood via a public statement. “We want to reassure you that, while the Sensible Object team is moving on to new projects, customer service and app maintenance for our games will continue.

“We’re honoured to have the opportunity to become Niantic London. London is a unique city; through Sensible Object and formerly Hide&Seek we have been making augmented reality games here for over a decade. Joining Niantic feels a bit like coming home.

“CEO John Hanke and his team have an incredible, progressive vision for the future of play that resonates deeply with us,” he concluded. “Building global communities, pioneering new forms of augmented reality, and helping people get outside, get exercise and connect with one another in the real world.”

In a bid to suppress a number of “cheat” apps based upon of its most popular games, we reported yesterday that Niantic has reportedly filed an injunction against the hacker group responsible for their distribution.

The lawsuit – which specifically names Ryan “ElliotRobot” Hunt, Alen “iOS n00b” Hundur, and lists 20 other unknown members of Global++ – accuses the group of being an “association of hackers” that makes “unauthorised derivative versions” of its augmented reality games.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond, including Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, IGN, MTV, and Variety.

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