Posted: 21 months ago, last updated 16 months ago.
You work with a professor to help uncover the mystery of a glowing Pokemon called the Illumina. Your findings are documented in your Pokedex and as you progress through the game it gets filled with the Pokemon you have discovered, which are categorised into their types.
Along the way, you explore zones like deserts and jungles which are inhabited by different varieties of Pokemon. You photograph them lurking and playing in their natural habitats and interact with them to get them to do a special pose. You use your scanner to find hidden paths and rare Pokemon which are hidden from sight while also finding them in places that are more out of the way.
You can toss food and other items at the creatures to bring them out of bushes. This, along with visiting locations during the day or night determines the Pokemon you find. At the end of the day your photos get a star rating based on the quality, positioning, and how the Pokemon is behaving in the picture. You can edit the pictures that you have taken and add stickers. You can also choose to upload your Pokemon pictures to the online community of other real players who will award medals for your work.
This game takes inspiration from the original Pokemon Snap (1999) game but has many more Pokemon to discover and unknown islands to explore. Unlike other Pokemon games, New Pokemon Snap (2021) gives you the chance to observe the Pokemon and the environment rather than capturing them and levelling them up. In addition, although it is a simple idea of collecting photos, it has puzzle elements that involve trying different techniques to find the right scenarios to find the Pokemon.
5+ year-olds usually have the required skill to enjoy this game. One parent told us, "My 5-year-olds just loves taking pictures in Pokemon Snap. They couldn't care less about the points system and take turns doing level each. I just have to go through the menus for them. To be honest, it's great bonding time."
New Pokemon Snap
The game was re-released for the Wii's Virtual Console in December 2007 as well as Wii U's Virtual Console in 2016.
The Switch game offers free additional downloadable content:
- Secret Side Path (Day/Night) – The NEO-ONE shrinks to a tiny size when you explore this area, so the Pokémon you see will look gigantic and you might spot new kinds of behaviour from Pokémon you’ve seen before.
- Mightywide River (Day/Night) – Mightywide River is a nurturing water source that provides the whole of Belusylva Island with sustenance. Be on the lookout for rapids as you search for Pokémon.
- Barren Badlands (Day/Night) - In this area, you’ll research the badlands of Voluca Island, where dry winds from the desert blow. This area has many peculiar features, from geysers to poisonous, gas-spewing swamps.
Motion controls or the left or right stick on your controller can be used to aim and direct where you point the camera.
The text throughout the game is high contrast, but is often quite small.
Some of the Pokémon you can take pictures of move very quickly, meaning you'll need quick reactions. Others are quite small and easy to miss, and many blend into the scenery, making them difficult to spot.
Diversity and Inclusion
Our experts have hand-picked the following similar games. These are similar to New Pokemon Snap in how they play or their theme. These are good alternative games to New Pokemon Snap.