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A new Pokémon Go clone lets players collect Catholic saints instead of monsters

Less fighting, more praying

Church Traditionalists Call For Pope Francis’s Resignation Giulio Origlia/Getty Images

The Catholic Church is one of the oldest institutions in the world, and recently, there’s been a concerted attempt to reach Generation Z.

That’s where Follow JC Go comes in. Inspired by Pokémon Go, Follow JC Go is a mobile game where the goal is to collect saints and other notable figures that appeared in the Bible as they roam around town, according to Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera. It was developed by Fundación Ramón Pané, a Florida-based Catholic evangelical group. Although the Vatican isn’t directly connected to the game, Pope Francis is reportedly a fan.

“You know, Francis is not a very technological person, but he was in awe, he understood the idea, what we were trying to do: combine technology with evangelization,” Ricardo Grzona, executive director of Fundación Ramón Pané, told Crux Now.

Follow JC Go!
Follow JC Go!
Follow JC Go!

Unlike Pokémon Go, players aren’t expected to fight other devoted Catholics to reign supreme. There aren’t any gyms for players to beef up their saints, and it seems unlikely that you’ll be able to evolve Jesus by feeding him a certain amount of bread or fish.

Instead, Pokémon Go’s combat elements are replaced with philosophical questions that players will have to answer when they come across saints and other biblical names. Expect to focus less on becoming the very best that no one ever was and more on digging deep down into your heart to do some hard but necessary soul-searching.

It also wouldn’t be a proper Catholic game without elements of prayer: players must eat, drink, and pray to level-up their characters. The game also encourages players to take some time to smell the roses — or go to church whenever they pass one.

Follow JC Go is available now for Android and iOS devices, but it’s currently only playable in Spanish. Italian, Portuguese, and English versions are reportedly on the way.