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Pokémon Go challenge quests incoming, says datamine

Get ready to see more Professor Willow, finally

professor willow Niantic

Pokémon Go will soon include a quests feature, according to a datamine of the game’s latest update. Included in the mobile game’s files are several hints that quests will deepen the lore of Pokémon Go — including giving some of its original characters more to do in-game.

The Silph Road community of Pokémon Go “researchers” unpacked the version 0.91.1 update, which will soon go live for Android and iOS users. The game’s biggest Reddit community is known for its deep dives into Pokémon Go’s new and forthcoming updates, often revealing features ahead of their official introduction.

Among the version update’s files are are hints toward new daily quests, according to a thread on The Silph Road’s subreddit. These appear to replace the current spin and catch bonuses players receive from PokéStops and Pokémon battles. They’ll also be expanded to include objectives like winning gym battles, hatching Pokémon Eggs and successfully finishing a Raid Battle. It even looks like there will be “multi-part quests” that depend on more than simple, single actions to complete.

But most intriguing are the quest characters to be introduced alongside these new objectives. From the looks of it, The Silph Road reports, these include Professor Willow — the game’s original Pokémon expert, whose presence thus far has been relegated to a bit part at certain points of the game. Dataminers speculate that Professor Willow and other non-playable characters could serve up quests to players; the NPCs could even have an emotional response, dependent on players’ success in completing the quest at hand.

At last year’s Game Developers Conference, Niantic senior product manager Tatsuo Nomura did hint to Polygon that the team planned to work more on the game’s story and re-introduce its characters. He had no timetable then, indicating that Niantic wanted to focus on introducing more characters and gameplay features first.

The forthcoming quest system sounds like it will add that and then some, to The Silph Road fans’ excitement.

“We’re looking at the beginnings of an in-game quest system that appears to encapsulate all of the mechanics available in Pokémon GO, even incorporates characters who grant them, and pre-conditions that suggest increasing levels of difficulty and progress,” wrote The Silph Road’s founder, dronpes, in a Reddit thread. (Pre-conditions are another hinted new feature, referring to barriers that players may have to overcome in order to qualify for quest participation.)

There’s no release date indicated for when these features will be available, but we’ve reached out to Niantic for more details. We’ll update accordingly.