Niantic Peridot Review: Take Two

On May 8th Niantic’s brand new game Peridot was released. As someone who loved my Tamagotchi as a kid, and enjoys generally cute things, I played it and reviewed it. I had a few issues with the game after those first few days of play, the major one being that in order to get any more Dots, which is the whole point of the game, you had to pay cash money. There was no free way to earn Nests. They are the required items for hatching new Dots, but were only available behind a paywall. I quit playing the game after a few weeks because with no free to play (F2P) way to actually progress in your Dot collecting, what was the point?

Cut to early August, when I got a notification on the Samsung Store telling me that a developer had replied to my review for Peridot. I’d left a review way back in July explaining my disappointment in the game, and that it was completely paywalled. The reply definitely piqued my interest.

A new, free way to earn Nests? Count me back in for a round two review and to see how easy it was to actually earn the Nests.

Game Updates

I logged into the game to be greeted by the following message from the end of July:

“We wanted to provide an update regarding our recent Nest experimentation and share some changes we’ll be making to provide alternative ways for you to obtain Nests in-game.

Starting in early August, we’ll make the following changes:

Keepers will be able to claim a Nest on the 30th login of the Daily Login Bonus

Going forward, Keepers will be able to claim Nests as rewards from the Keeper’s Journey as they reach the following levels: 5, 10, 15, 23, 26, 29, 32, 35, 38, 41, 44, 47, 50.

Starting in August there will be at least one special quest per month that rewards a Nest.”

Immediately I am eager to try out these new changes. In the Beta Test there had been ways to forge Nests, which still isn’t something that has been added to the game, but in order for this game to survive, free Nests had to be obtainable in some way. I checked my Keeper Journal and was immediately rewarded with some free Nests, and there was a free Nest in the shop also. Much better!

I immediately looked for a Dot that I wanted to make a new Dot with, and sent out the request. A reply came back in 5 minutes, letting me know people were still actively playing the game which was a nice surprise. The process of creating a new Dot remained exactly the same as it had previously, but the new Dot alerted me to another quality of life update that Peridot has instituted.

Instead of having three levels of age for your Dot, there are now additional age levels, and once your Dot is an Adult, you can also work on your bond with them to aim to become Soulmates. Your Dot begins as a baby, then as your work complete tasks and level them up they become a Child, then a Teen, then a Young Adult, before becoming an Adult. At the Adult level you can make Dots with other Dots.

This update means there is a good reason to continue on with your existing Dot once they reach adulthood, as there are now more levels to your bond. The levels are Pals, Buds, Friends, Best Friends, BFFs, and finally Soulmates.

There are also some updates to the ways in which you interact with your Dot, with the AR now being able to recognise items like screens, sofas, food, vehicles and more. These are new ‘socialisations’ that help your Dot progress in levels, and grow your bond. I played mostly from home, so I got a few snarky messages about being able to see screens too often (don’t judge me Peridot, if I want a lazy Sunday binging TV shows I’ve watched 27 times already, I will!).

In terms of these updates, there is already a lot more to do, and with free ways to earn Nests, more reason to play immediately, however, that doesn’t mean the game is not without some major issues still.

Continuing Problems

My phone became ridiculously hot playing this game, to the point I was concerned and closed all my apps, and left my phone alone for a while to cool down. While it was warm in the UK when I was playing, it wasn’t particularly hot. I don’t see this as a game that really can be played much out and about because of this. After 10 minutes it didn’t feel safe to play it, without my phone being impacted, which is very much not ideal. I’d be worried playing for any longer than my phone would overheat and potentially cause some lasting damage, and I don’t consider Peridot worth the risk. I’ll stick to the odd log in at home in a controlled environment.

It also uses an incredible amount of battery life, to the point that even when plugged into my fast charger in a proper plug socket, the game used more battery than the charger was able to add back to my phone. This is a massive issue, and means that unlike games like Pokemon GO, play time is very limited, and will be more confined to places you can charge your phone. I’m not convinced a portable charger would have much impact on battery life at all with this game, just maybe slowing it slightly. I have a fairly new phone, only a year old, so I dread to think how bad this would be with an older device.

Conclusion

In conclusion, while there are now many more reasons to log into the game and play for extended periods of time, the impact on your phone itself is still a major concern. I can’t see myself ever meeting up with someone else who plays this game to say, go to a park and explore like we do with Pokémon GO, because it simply uses too much battery, and there isn’t much point. Unfortunately with a game that is played solely in AR, while the technology is impressive, it uses so much power that it isn’t viable long term. How this can be improved upon in the future will be interesting, because if Niantic insist on keeping this game as AR only, it may not ever really grow as a community.

Author & tags

kittypokemonsalot
kittypokemonsalothttps://www.kittyramblesalot.com/
Pokémon GO Hub Editor in Chief and Writer. Turtwig obsessive, real life Psyduck, Pokémon GO AR Photographer, found footage horror fan.

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