Conceptual Story & Event : Photographer Todd Snap

Welcome to my new concept for new story-based content. This time around I thought to focus on a game feature which is not utilised as much as could be, primarily because not all devices have access to it, but as time goes on hopefully more players will be able to adopt AR and AR Plus.

As we have seen with updates to the AR service, first with iOS in Dec 2017 and then with Android in March 2018, more devices are having access to the upgraded feature. Our world and the Pokémon Universe are growing ever closer and with the most recent announcement, perhaps the lines will blur event further.

The AR feature, which has been part of Pokémon Go from day one, is slowly becoming better and better. The article by Josh titled How To Take the Perfect AR Photo is truly inspiring and on our discord we have a gallery for AR shots.

The quality of the work we see saw on the channel was so high, that Josh started a monthly AR showcase in May 2018.

Photographs in the Pokémon Universe

While the anime has seen several episodes dedicated to photographers and journalists, the main games since Generation 4 have utilised the mechanic of taking pictures, firstly in a limited location to a much broader scope of locations and impromptu photo shoot after a Pokémon evolves. Of course the truly immersive Pokémon Snap! cannot be omitted.

The main character in my story is a reoccurring character called Todd Snap. This Pokémon photographer has appeared in Pokémon Snap!, multiple anime episodes and even as a flavor item in the GameCube brawling game Super Smash Bros. Melee.

The best at capturing Pokémon… on film

Todd Snap Event

This conceptual event begins with a micro-story. This is a four-part story in which you have been asked to assist Todd with compiling a photo journal of the wild Pokémon in an undocumented area. As you are familiar with the local vicinity, Todd is willing to take you on as an apprentice. 

Task (1/4)   Travel and Survey
Task (2/4)   Photograph and Document
Task (3/4)   Braving the Wilds
Task (4/4)   Achieve the Deadline

For the benefit of many players, I have not included any of the mechanics introduced as part of AR Plus. For a breakdown of the enhanced features you can check out our AR Plus overview. While they do offer a fun experience not all players have access to it.

Compiling a Local Trainer Guide

Task (1/4) Investigate your surroundings

Todd has been tasked with going to an area that has attracted many new trainers but not much is known about what appears in the vicinity. The first thing we need to do is get the lay of the land, this will help us determine what types we are likely to encounter. He has decided the fastest way is to split up and see what we can find.

Objective 1   Walk 10km
Objective 2   Spin 5 Pokéstops
Objective 3   Battle 1 Gym

Task (2/4) Document the local species

Once we have determined what Pokémon are in the area, both trained and wild, it’s time to begin our journal entries.

Objective 1   Take an AR Photo’s of 15 unique Pokémon
Objective 2   Encounter 10 different Pokémon types
Objective 3   Complete 1 Raid

Task (3/4) Experiencing the Elements

Once we have taken photo’s, Todd thinks the journal would benefit from a more artistic approach and decides to teach you some of the more advanced techniques, namely photographing in various weather conditions and braving their hardships.

Objective 1   Take AR Photo’s of 10 different weather boosted Pokémon
Objective 2   Earn 1 Buddy Candy in 5 different weather types
Objective 3   Complete 5 Gym Battles using Weather Boosted moves

Task (4/4) Is that your thumb?

You have gathered up all the information necessary to complete the local field guide for Todd’s editor. The feedback is positive but one of the Pokémon captured is not a clear image. Please can we track it down and get a better shot.

When you find the Pokémon you’ve been hunting for, you stop and ready your camera. Peering through your viewfinder you see a truly wondrous sight, a completely unexpected Pokémon. It’s appears to not notice you but as you train your camera to get into focus it spins and lunges forward with startling speed.

Objective 1   Take an AR Photograph of a wild Pokémon
Objective 2   Defend yourself from the startled Pokémon

Once you have taken a photo of the wild Pokémon and existed the encounter you are immediately drawn into a combat encounter.

A 1* Suicune battle to your location (CP 7,552). It is important to note that no gym is required. Defeat Suicune to start bonus encounter where it knows the charge move Ice Beam. Exclusive moves should not necessarily be restricted to community day.

You can choose your 6 Pokémon at the start of the encounter and have the use of berries and any Pokéball available to catch it. If you are defeated in battle, the Pokémon flees until such time you are able to encounter it again (take more AR Photo’s).

Post-battle, Todd is thrilled, not only have you completed your assignment but you are an eye witness to a legendary Pokémon in the area. Todd is determined to track it down and take a picture of the elusive Pokémon himself.

Todd supplies you with a upgraded camera strap so you will always have your camera to hand. Perhaps photographing more Pokémon will bring the Suicune back for a second encounter.

Camera Strap : New Outfit Appearance, wear your camera with pride. Addition to Backback options.

Medals!!!

Similar to how most activities in Pokémon Go has a medal, AR will also have one awarding a variety of filters or camera effects.

Photograph 75 Unique Pokémon AR Camera Basic Pack
Photograph 150 Unique Pokémon AR Camera Intermediate Pack
Photograph 225 Unique Pokémon AR Camera Advanced Pack
Examples of Filters
credit to @123321mario for the screenshots
Original image

Genuine Art

As much of this concept is solo based, we at the Hub (and I hope the wider community) love to see the art that players have managed to do. While it is hard to create a community experience such as with my Nurse Joy and Officer Jenny concepts, I would love to hear from you guys how AR could be used for a community in-game mechanic.

One of my personal favorites was submitted by @ShinyMajinrobin on our Discord #ar_pictures and with the publication of How To Take the Perfect AR Photo perhaps more great work will be published.

Amazing AR shot by ShinyMajinrobin, click for full resolution

Is this achievable…

The only new piece of code required would be a method of registering what Pokémon you had taken a picture of, and the weather effect in play. From a mechanic perspective it is perhaps one of the easiest to implement beyond any animation assets required.

I hope you enjoyed this concept, in addition to my previous concept articles, I aim to outline my visions for more story driven content. I have tried to use as much feedback as possible to improve each concept, please keep it coming.

Here’s hoping Niantic is listening. Expanding content beyond the current story, can only enhance the game for both the solo player and the overall community.

Venasto1se

Venasto1se

Writer, Conceptualist, Theorycrafter and Analyst. U.K. based level 40 trainer. Blizzard Entertainment fanboy and Game Freak enthusiast.

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