Pokémon GO (Mobile) Review

The World is Your Safari Zone

Pokémon GO takes the evergreen Pokémon series and converts it into an accessible and addictive mobile game. The free-to-play app has already affected the world in such a unique way, bringing millions of people outside to capture creatures using their smartphones. Interesting news headlines have emerged detailing unusual events regarding Pokémon GO’s widespread popularity. Pictures and stories of trainers’ journeys have gone viral through social media. The app has even brought people together, with players meeting up to look for Pokémon and making new friends along the way. Pokémon GO is a special breed, and the big question is what about this game makes it work.

Gameplay

The premise of Pokémon GO is simple: travel across the land, searching far and wide for creatures known as Pokémon. Pokémon GO uses a smartphone’s GPS tracking functionality to locate where you are in the real world. Your character appears on a simplified map on your screen and walks wherever you go. Based on where you are, a Pokémon may appear, which you may touch to initiate an encounter.

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Catch all your favorite Pokemon, including Pikachu!

Catching Pokémon

Unlike in the main Pokémon games, you don’t battle a Pokémon to catch it. You flick a Pokéball towards a Pokémon using a simple upward swipe. When your Pokéball lands a hit, it sucks in the Pokémon and shakes a few times. If the Pokémon does not escape from the ball, then you have successfully captured it. If it breaks out, then you can try again with another Pokéball. For those familiar with mainline Pokémon games, the most similar comparison to these mechanics is the Safari Zone, which focuses on catching rather than battling.

This simplistic system works due to its intuitiveness. While Pokémon GO doesn’t tell you what to do with the ball, it’s easy to figure out. You don’t need to deal with any menus or health meters. Just flick the ball and hope it hits. As you catch more creatures and gain experience, you can perform more options. For example, you can feed Pokémon berries and use upgraded balls to increase capture rates. You can also perform curveballs and “excellent” throws with careful technique and timing.

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Flick a Pokeball towards a Pokemon to capture it.

What truly brings the Pokémon world to life are the GPS tracking and augmented reality functions. Pokémon GO follows you in the real world, and different Pokemon appear depending on your location. Water Pokémon appear more frequently around lakes and oceans, whereas Ground Pokémon are more common in drier climates. This distribution of Pokémon makes the game feel more authentic. Trainers may find themselves seeking out new locales near and far to find rare Pokémon. A handy tracker informs you on which Pokémon are nearby and how close they are.

The location dependency’s downside is you may not find much beyond the most common creatures such as Pidgey or Rattata. In a smart move, the app rewards you for catching repeats of Pokémon. Every time you capture a Pokémon, you receive candy exclusive to that species. By amassing enough candy, you can evolve your Pokémon into stronger creatures. While some Pokémon like Pidgey take only 12 candies to evolve, a Magikarp requires a whopping 400 candies. Through this clever evolution mechanic, the developers have turned the flaw of too many repeated creatures into a strength.

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Nearby Pokemon Tracker – Water Pokemon are more common near bodies of water.

Pokémon GO also takes advantage of augmented reality (AR) by using your smartphone’s camera to superimpose the Pokémon onto real-world backdrops. You can take pictures of your AR Pokemon and share them online via social media. This small feature doesn’t affect the game and can be turned off, yet it goes such a long way in bringing Pokémon to life. With most of the original 150 Pokémon available for capture, this app will appease nostalgic fans.

Pokéstops and Microtransactions

Though you may be tempted to catch every Pokémon you see, Pokéballs are in limited supply. Running out can be devastating, especially when you see a rare creature nearby. Luckily, there are some features that make it easy to restock these commodities. One option is to travel to Pokéstops, which are located at areas of interest, such as churches, museums, and train stations. You can refill on Pokéballs and other items by spinning the medal at the Pokéstop. Although you only get a few items at a time, you can respin the Pokéstop after about five minutes.

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The cubes in the distance as well as the nearby Pokemon medal represent Pokestops.

You may also receive Pokémon eggs at Pokéstops, which you can hatch by walking a certain distance (2, 5, or 10 km). This is a smart move that encourages exercise by taking advantage of the app’s portable nature and your desire to search for Pokémon.

If you are unable to get to a Pokéstop, you have the option to buy Pokécoins with real world money. These coins are used to buy any of several items, including Pokéballs, Lure Modules that attract uncommon Pokémon to a Pokéstop, and incubators for hatching more eggs. This fare is typical for microtransactions, with slight discounts offered for bulk purchases. Buyer beware: most items for sale only increase opportunities for catching Pokémon but do not guarantee capture.

Leveling Up and Gyms

For every important action you take, such as catching or evolving Pokémon, your character gains experience points. By leveling up, you can find Pokémon with higher Combat Power (CP). CP is an indicator of strength and factors in a Pokémon’s health, attack, and defense. A Pokémon’s CP can be increased using candy and stardust, both gained by capturing Pokémon. The higher your trainer level, the stronger the Pokemon you can obtain. Strong Pokémon matter for a key feature of Pokémon GO: Gyms.

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The flashy stadium tower is a Gym.

Upon reaching level 5, you choose one of three teams to join: Instinct (yellow), Mystic (blue), or Valor (red). These teams act like factions, introducing a competitive multiplayer aspect. The goal of each team is to claim gyms, which are scattered around the world, usually at places of interest. Claiming a gym is as easy as depositing a Pokémon into it. However, if a gym is already claimed, it becomes trickier.

In order to take another team’s gym, you must battle the Pokémon deposited there. Much like catching, battling is simple and intuitive. Tap the screen to attack, and swipe to the left or right to make your Pokémon dodge. Unlike mainline Pokémon games, your Pokémon only has two attacks. The first is your basic attack, activated by tapping. This builds up a gauge for your second stronger attack, unleashed by holding your finger on the screen. The battle system isn’t as satisfying as in traditional Pokémon games, but it fits the mobile platform well. If you defeat every Pokémon, the gym’s power level, known as prestige, decreases. If you win enough times and lower the gym’s prestige to zero, the gym becomes unclaimed, and you can place your Pokémon in the gym. You can increase your own team’s gym prestige by challenging it. If you raise the gym’s prestige enough, your teammates can add their Pokémon to the gym’s ranks, building up its defense. You also gain bonuses for having Pokémon at gyms such as valuable Pokécoins, so the incentive is huge.

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The simple battle mechanics suit the touchscreen.

This engaging gym warfare is made possible through the developer Niantic, who previously made the multiplayer location-based game, Ingress. By adding this competitive element, Niantic has made a game that can keep going even after you’ve caught ‘em all. When many people are playing nearby, you may unfortunately find that gyms switch owners within minutes. Keeping Pokémon at a gym can be difficult unless you are actively building up your gym’s prestige. Nevertheless, gyms make for exciting showdowns between teams and is a welcome addition to the already addicting catching aspect.

Glitches

Pokémon GO is inherently fun, but it would be remiss to not mention the frequent glitches that plague this app. Servers tend to go down during big releases, and it was especially problematic when the app first launched. While servers have been better since then, this is an ongoing issue. Other problems that have afflicted the app include glitches where it is nearly impossible to reduce a Pokémon’s HP to zero during a gym battle and inaccuracy of the nearby Pokémon tracker. If you pay for anything using real money, be aware that any number of server issues or bugs may render certain purchases useless.

The Social Factor

There is a huge positivity that outweighs any negativity regarding this app. Pokémon GO is a highly social game that allows for unique experiences with people around you. This is one of the best outcomes of this app. Pokémon GO is a shared experience, meaning that people in the same area will encounter the same Pokémon. If ten people are looking for a Bulbasaur, they will eventually end up in the same place. Whether this was intended by developers, these people can then talk about the Bulbasaur they’re tracking and share leads on other nearby Pokémon. Because strategies for catching and fighting are only vaguely explained by the game, trainers can get together to share tips, similarly to how people shared Nintendo game secrets decades ago. Finally, the presence of teams leads to friendly competition, with people banding together to take down gyms and finding camaraderie. This app also lends itself to meetups, from small parties to citywide gatherings.

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Yes, everyone here is trying to catch that Bulbasaur.

Graphics and Sound

Each individual Pokémon’s design looks good, as if they were lifted from Pokémon Stadium-like games. The designs aren’t as beautiful as those of more recent titles. The map lacks details or labels, showing your character on a flat terrain with only a vague indication of where you are.

The music is catchy, with a fast tempo to get you pumped up to walk. The app has the same composer as the mainline Pokémon games, which leads to authentic music that is similar to the original’s tunes. Although it’s nice to have the song running as your personal walking theme song, it can get repetitive. Luckily, you can turn it off at any time. The iconic Pokémon cries are also authentic to the original.

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The Pokemon designs are simple and cute.

Playtime/Replayability

Pokémon GO has an addictive gameplay loop, encouraging players to catch them all. It is a time consuming but satisfying goal for anyone who has grown up with Pokémon. A medal achievement system provides incentives to catch many Pokémon of different types. Even though the game is entertaining, the drive to keep going will differ for each person. Your interest in the game may vary depending on which Pokémon are nearby. If you are in a densely populated area, you may find more Pokémon, Pokéstops, and gyms. If you are in a less-populated area, you may find less things to do overall.

Pokémon GO can also take a toll on your phone’s battery life. Possible solutions are to keep the brightness down, music off, and the handy Battery Saver mode turned on. Surprisingly, Pokémon GO doesn’t use a lot of data, which is great considering most of your adventures will likely take place outside of Wi-Fi zones. If Niantic can maintain a steady update schedule and keep players interested by adding more features and Pokémon, then this app is sure to have longevity.

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Gotta Catch ‘Em All!

Conclusion

No matter what you think of Pokémon or the app itself, it is undeniably clear that this game has the potential to make positive impacts on players’ physical and mental health. Pokémon GO encourages exercise and leads to meeting other players around you. Without social elements, Pokémon GO is still a highly addictive game, with the broad appeal of a popular franchise, intuitive mechanics that simplify traditional Pokémon gameplay, and the allure of rare Pokémon encouraging flocks of people to leave the comforts of their home. Server issues and glitches can impair the ability to play this game. Nevertheless, the addictive “Gotta Catch ‘Em All” gameplay loop warrants any Pokémon fan’s attention.

If you have even a passing interest in Pokémon, I highly recommend Pokémon GO.  The best time to get into the app is when others are also playing it. Pokémon GO creates communal experiences, where you can make new friends, travel with comrades conquering gyms, and share stories and pictures. Pokémon GO has the ability to bring very different kinds of people together. The best part is that everyone’s story is unique. The friends you make, the conversations you have, the pictures you take, the places you go; these are all parts of your personal Pokémon adventure. An app’s features can be rated, but your own personal experience throughout your journey is priceless.

Score: 8/10

What are your thoughts on Pokémon GO? How has your experience been so far? Do you have any fun stories to share about your Pokémon journey? Who are your favorite Pokémon that you’ve caught? What team are you on? Please share any thoughts in the comments section below!

Note: Please remember to always watch your surroundings when playing Pokémon GO. Please do not play while driving. Stay safe and remember that it’s all about having fun! Take care, Pokémon trainers!

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56 thoughts on “Pokémon GO (Mobile) Review

  1. Reblogged this on The News, Reviews & Personal Views Website On All Things Nintendo and commented:

    Hey everyone! Mr. Panda here, with a review of the mobile app that’s taken the world by storm, Pokémon GO! You can now travel across the land, searching far and wide for Pokémon using your smartphone. Flocks of trainers have been coming together through this app, making new friends and forming new rivalries. As a Pokémon fan who’s grown up with the series since it came out and have never let go, I’ve always dreamed of a game like this. Find out what the craze is all about in my review! Please share any thoughts and stories of your experiences in the comments section too!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your great comments! I wholly agree! The best part of Pokemon GO has been its power to bring people together. Families are bonding with children, kids are going outside, people of different races and ages are playing together, and trainers are making new friends!

      I have had unique experiences with this app, even going to huge organized meetups where lots of people get together to play Pokemon GO. Ironically, the servers went down that day, but that didn’t stop people from having fun and just having a giant Pokeparty. As a longtime Pokemon fan who has followed every generation since the first one, I’m so happy that people are talking about Pokemon again. It brings me back to childhood when it was popular. It’s great! Thanks again!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think it’s probably going to be my first Pokemon lol. It’s funny; I was talking with another blogger friend about what Pokemon I should start with about a week before this came out, and lo and behold my question was answered 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. It would be a great Pokemon to start with, even if you haven’t played a mainline game. It’s not that close to the traditional Pokemon games, and the catching and battling are pretty much completely different. The spirit is still definitely there, and you’ll be able to appreciate all of the original 150 Pokemon in a special way. I’m interested in how your first Pokemon journey turns out with a unique app like GO!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for your kind words! It’s awesome how easily this game spreads through word of mouth and social media. I love the fact that you got your coworkers hooked, and it’s great that they just notice you having fun playing Pokemon GO. I love opening it randomly and finding something (hopefully). And lately, I’ve been planning trips and walks with my wife and friends, just for Pokemon GO. We’ve been talking to people we know about it and also meeting new players on the streets.

      It’s such a wonderful, positive change for the better in our lives, and the lives of many others enjoying this app!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. To be honest, I knew I was going to like Pokémon GO well before it came out. I’ve played Pokémon for close to my whole life, so the idea of having them in real life has always been appealing (even if, admittedly, there was some cynicism when the game was first announced about the ability to practically handle such an idea). However, the social aspect has definitely been a way more appealing thing than the game itself – even if the game itself IS super fun and addicting in its own right. Not only have I personally gotten my whole family addicted to the game, but I’ve found myself running into high school and college acquaintances from classes and such in places I totally wouldn’t expect to see them, only to have just another means of bonding and getting closer than ever. Really helps having something to geek out about with someone thanks to my more introverted personality, even if a lot of the people I see are shocked about the sheer breadth of knowledge I’ve accumulated about the series in almost two decades or so. It’s really amazing just how much the game seems to be changing almost everything in such a short period of time!

    Awesome review you’ve got here man, definitely hits all the things it needs to about the game and the experience it’s been creating. Looking forward to seeing more in the future!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you so much for extremely kind words and excellent comments! I really appreciate it! I too had my doubts right before the game came out especially after that subpar E3 demonstration. However, once I tried it out, I could tell that this was something I always wanted. When I was younger, I pretended to catch Pokemon, battle fake trainers, and run gyms using pen and paper. This is that childhood experience materialized in the most amazing way!

      I am also introverted, and sometimes I’m too shy to talk to new people or even catch up with old friends. Pokemon GO is such a phenomenon, and everyone is talking about it, especially all of my old friends who had nostalgia for the original 151. It makes me so happy that I can start up conversation and even talk to old friends thanks to our shared interest of Pokemon! There’s no shame for us lifelong trainers who have lived through generations past one. We can all come together and enjoy Pokemon for what it is and share what the franchise is up to lately. And of course, meetups and conversations have been so much fun “in the wild.” I see lots of people who look like they’re obviously playing Pokemon GO and talk to them about it. Even though we don’t stay “friends” after it, it feels so rewarding to make acquaintances with strangers, which didn’t seem possible before this app.

      You’re right that Pokemon GO is ultimately changing everything in a good way! It brings such an overwhelming positivity in people that I can get used to. I hope that Niantic can continue to keep players’ interests so that this positivity can keep going. Thanks again for your amazing comments!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Awesome review, Mr. Panda! When I first heard about Pokemon GO before its release, I knew it’d be a fun game, but I didn’t expect the huge social component that would come with it. It’s encouraged me to go outside and explore new places–and run into others doing the same! It’s fun to see others young and old playing the game around me. It revives a lot of nostalgia being able to see Gen 1 Pokemon in the real world. The candy + stardust system is pretty clever and provides incentive to keep catching those dang Pidgeys and Rattatas. The major pitfall of this app is the frequent glitching and freezing. I hope Niantic is able to patch things up down the road. Their servers are very “humbled” indeed! It’s amazing what a phenomenon this app has become in just a few short weeks since its launch. You hit all the major points in your review and kept it open to both Pokemon veterans and newbies. Excellent job!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for your great comments! It’s great to be able to go outside and do new things especially in the summer time. It’s funny how Pokemon is actually encouraging people to go outside, even in very hot weather. The nostalgia is part of its mainstream success. I do wish that it didn’t freeze and glitch out as often as it does, but Niantic has been doing better in the past few days. And of course, when it works, it’s a fun experience, especially for Pokemon fans!

      Thanks again! I wanted to make it accessible for those who are familiar with Pokemon and those who just want to see what the craze is all about.

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  4. I couldn’t agree with you more, Alex! This game has converted a lifelong Pokemon fan from a skeptic to a believer in regards to how it’s brought everyone together! While it may not be a satisfying enough experience battle wise, the experience going out and meeting people…it’s what this world needs right now!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much Duroje! I appreciate your comments! It’s great that Pokemon GO is even showing lifelong Pokemon fans new thing about its reach. It’s powerful in bringing people together, and it is indeed important in these times. I’m glad that both gamers and more casual fans can enjoy something that brings so much happiness. The Pokemon brand is a truly amazing thing!

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  5. The picture of all the Pokemon is from the evil message of servers being down! Haha. No examples of those playground rumors about the game? I enjoyed the review! Thanks for writing. I’m surprised you didn’t mention how frustrating it can be to swipe the Pokeballs sometimes. I do disagree with your claim on how intuitive a gym is though as many I’m sure looked up how gyms work because it wasn’t clear. I didn’t learn until two weeks after the game how to get coins from the gyms.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the comments Robert! Yes, it’s that picture. I obviously had to crop out the evil message of servers being down and humbled. As for playground rumors, here you go, you can catch Yoshi, Mew is under the truck, Pokegods exist, Pikablu is a blue Pikachu, press up and B to catch a Pokemon (clearly true), you can multiply rare candies by catching this glitch called MissingNo. on Cinnabar Island’s coast… Well, that last one was true…

      Thanks for reading! I’m glad you enjoyed! Yes, you’re right. The Pokeballs are difficult to use sometimes, such as balls suddenly curving. I’m wondering if it’s a glitch or just a part of Niantic’s plan to get you to buy more Pokeballs. Either way, I didn’t include it as one of the examples of glitches because I wasn’t 100% certain which of these it was. There’s also the possibility that I’m just throwing it wrong, but that can’t be!

      Also, yes it takes a while to get the gym system, but it’s not that hard to figure out after a try. It’s certainly easier to understand than figuring out which move does what. I did neglect to mention the Super Effectiveness of moves, though it doesn’t make as much of a difference as raw power of moves. One thing about gyms though, it is one of the few things the game explains in the Tips section. There’s a fun fact there.

      Either way, thanks so much again for your kind words! I like that a game with such little instruction can still be enjoyed and understood by the general public. That must be the inherent magic of Pokemon!

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  6. Great review! I would be playing this myself except that I don’t have a data plan, and I’m not super comfortable with siphoning wifi from random spots to fuel my impending addiction. I’m so glad that everyone is having fun with the game. I grew up watching the cartoon but never owned a game until I was in my 20s. The learning curve is definitely worth it for the fun that any Pokemon game dishes out! I’m also happy that this game is intuitive. I threw a Pokeball in my house at my starter, and that’s about as far as I’ve gotten.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks a bunch! Yea, it’s a shame that you need a data plan to play this. For those with data plans, even limited, Pokemon GO luckily doesn’t take up too much data, which is surprising. I think even for people who were fans of just the show, there is a lot of appeal especially since Pokemon GO doesn’t even really follow the actual game’s mechanics. The touch screen controls are pretty easy to figure out, even if you don’t know how the game works. But since you’ve at least played a Pokemon game, it should be fine! What was your first Pokemon title?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sapphire is a nice choice! That’s been remade most recently into Pokemon Alpha Sapphire for the 3DS! I love the originals Pokemon Red and Blue of course, and that’s readily available on Virtual Console for 3DS as well. Heart Gold and Soul Silver were good DS remakes of the 2nd generation, which is also one of my favorites. I’m also fond of Black and White, which introduced a world of 150 brand new Pokemon and a story that involved a team that was upset that people used Pokemon for battle. I always found those games pretty interesting. Honestly, you can’t go wrong with any of the main games. Hopefully, you’re enjoying Pokemon Sapphire as well!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for the kind words! Yes, the game is very dependent on signals, both yours and the server’s. Sometimes it’s hard to find signal for me too, especially if I’m in a city area or in a basement. But I hope you can still find a way to enjoy it despite the struggle for signal! Thanks again for the comments and follow!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I wore a Pikachu shirt and hat the other day, and I’ve never gotten so many compliments in my life! Then they would ask if I’ve played Go. I only have a little because of all the game’s issues. But young, old, so many people just have recaught Pokemon fever!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s so awesome! It’s great that we as Pokemon fans are suddenly popular just for loving what we love! During a big Pokemon meetup I attended, plenty of people were wearing Pokemon shirts including myself. I feel so happy to just share my nerddom freely!

      Liked by 1 person

  8. I think this review is spot-on and while I’m shocked that I’m playing anything Pokemon, I have mostly enjoyed Pokemon Go. I’m excited for Nintendo and glad they are finding new ways to reach potential customers too 🙂 Keep up the great work on here Mr. Panda 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much for your kind words, Kuribo! It seems that this game’s reach extends to many people, even those who aren’t as into Pokemon. It’s so great to hear.

      The mobile market is an exciting new field for both The Pokemon Company and Nintendo. I’m glad they got their foot in with such a worldwide hit. I hope Nintendo’s mobile games follow this kind of success. Hopefully, they’re paying attention to see what works, especially regarding microtransactions. Thanks so much again! I really mean it!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re very welcome! I agree and it probably doesn’t hurt that this is a video game that encourages people to get exercise and be social. Nobody can complain about either of those things. It will definitely be exciting to see where Nintendo goes on mobile from here too!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Exactly! In fact, lack of exercise and being social is what people tend to complain about with video games. Pokemon GO looks at that and somehow effectively gets kids outside with friends! It’s so against the norm, and I love it. It’s super effective!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I have been trying to walk more this summer and while I enjoy taking walks with my girlfriend all on their own, Pokemon Go definitely makes those kinds of things even more fun. I’m not sure she is thrilled about me having to stop to catch a Pokemon every five seconds but that is another issue altogether haha

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I know how you feel! My wife wants to walk more, and GO makes it more fun. Conversely, for the sake of Pokemon GO, I ask to walk more. Everyone’s happy, haha. This is Nintendo’s surprise Quality of Life app!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Very insightful! The broad appeal of Pokemon GO can probably be attributed to the mobile platform. Yes, the Pokemon brand is huge, and the original 150 is nostalgia fuel. But the fact that you don’t need to buy a new system just for one game, and that nearly everyone has a way to play this free game is a big reason for its tremendous reach. I’m pleased that Nintendo and the Pokemon Company agreed to this successful business venture by Niantic. I hope it continues to do well for them!

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  9. I’ve really enjoyed going over to a nearby park after work and searching with others. It’s so addictive. The server issues are annoying but will hopefully be resolved in the near future. I’m curious to see how they ha doe legendaries and also gen 2

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s surprisingly fun to have to go on a walk to play a game. It kind of reminds me of Boktai (GBA), where you had to play in the sun to use your weapon. There are so many common Pokemon near where I live, so it’s rewarding to go out somewhere new and see what Pokemon are there. It’s even better when there are lots of Pokemon that I don’t have yet. Gen 2 will be exciting, and I’m curious to see what people will think of it, particularly those who are only familiar with Gen 1. I have no idea how they’ll handle legendaries aside from doing time/place specific periods for catching the legendaries. They might just give each team their respective legendary bird too. It’ll be exciting when any big update occurs!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. This app has done a better job of getting gamers to exercise than any other Nintendo product. It’s good to hear that the positive Go stories are now starting to eclipse the negative press it suffered from early on. Getting candies for repeats is a cool idea and similar to what other free games do (were you can sacrifice cards receive a power boost.) Hopefully the servers get better. I would lose my temper if I bought a bunch of items only to lose them due to a disconnect.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Exactly! As much as I actually like games like Wii Sports and Wii Fit, Pokemon GO does a better job hiding the fact that you’re exercising. The motives lie in going out and catching Pokemon, not the dreaded word, “exercise.” Even though most people understand that this app leads to a lot of exercise, they might be too preoccupied with the excitement of searching for Pokemon. This is probably why all of the trainers in the show and games are so fit, haha! The fact that it’s so hot in most places in the west right now shows that people are willing to walk through anything for Pokemon.

      This app is definitely a buyer beware situation just because nothing is permanent. Some items like lures and incense are time-sensitive and if you use it right before the servers go down, you basically lose it. If the servers were perfect, I’d be more inclined to make some purchases. I’ve already been tempted to. I just need to ensure that my money won’t go to waste inadvertently.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. My experience with Pokemon Go thus far is – download apk, played for a day, can’t connect to GPS the second day. 😦 When will it come to my country officially???? But the little of played of it is fun. I’ve only caught about 15 pokemons, most of them zubats…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yea depending on where and when you played, you might have has trouble connecting. Servers are pretty stable now considering the app released in Japan without problems. Hope it comes out in your country soon!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Awesome review, Alex! Great overview of basic gameplay and the pros and cons. This game has been changing my life on the exercise front. Before, if I had downtime, I would much prefer to stay in the house and watch tv or read a book or something. Now, every chance I get, I take a walk outside, preferably to places that I’ve never been before. And it’s gotten me out for a run every single night since I downloaded it! It’s amazing. It is also, unfortunately, the glitchiest app I have ever downloaded. I can’t tell you how many times I have groaned in frustration at the app crashing just as I was about to catch a Vulpix or a Charmander. However, the way that I stick with it and constantly check if the servers are back up is a testament to how good it is.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Lisa! I really appreciate it! It’s so moving to hear about the ways Pokemon GO is affecting your life for the better. Who knew years ago that such a game series would lead to kids going outside and being social 20 years later. It’s amazing and encouraging. Pokemon GO really needs to be on those infomercials where everyone is giving testimonials about how Pokemon GO worked for them, haha.

      “I tried Pokemon GO and it changed my life.”

      The servers are better now for sure. It came out in Japan and the servers were relatively unaffected. That speaks to how much better they’re doing. Also, it certainly is a testament to how addicting Pokemon is when even when it’s broken, that just makes us want it more. We feel withdrawal! Thanks again!

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  13. You know my thoughts by now about the game, I think it’s a great mobile game gaming wise, but I love the way it works socially. Yesterday I had my first experience going to a park where people had put lures up. This park that is usually so quiet had lots of people gathering with a common goal. No arguments, no strive, no loudness. Just people getting along and having fun. This really warms my heart!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree completely! The ways Pokemon GO has impacted the world is encouraging. Lures, in particular, are very ingenious items that operate on one person’s kindness. That kindness flows into others passing by who get to benefit from the Pokemon attracted to the lure. People are overall happy, and they get to share their happiness with the people around them. It’s always a beautiful sight to see especially considering the state of the world lately. It warms my heart as well! Thanks for your comments!

      Liked by 1 person

  14. It is a 5/10 game for me at the moment. The tracker is only a small bug, but it is the lack of anything more interesting to do.

    Can’t trade, can’t fight friends.

    The location based stuff doesn’t really seem to work. I was at the beach last week, all I could see was Zubats!

    The game still crashes every time I try to do a gym battle, people can steal gyms by just standing there while you fight then assigning Pokemon while you get out of the battle screen.

    The crashing when I catch a Pokemon seems to have stopped the last week though!

    I like that it is bringing people together and there is a heavy social element going on for some, I’m too much of a grump to talk to other people in public 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Pokemon GO can be divisive depending on where you are and how you play. I’m still enjoying it, living near a city where I still get to enjoy more diverse Pokemon. Haha, sorry to hear about the Zubats. I usually have pretty good luck with location-based Pokemon (which means I’m also still missing a bunch of rock and ground types). Gyms can also be pesky with snipers and it can be improved, but the overall structure is still an experience that works. Opinions and ratings of this game can also change over time simply because of how updates work. The game is actually a lot less buggy, which was one of my issues, though removal of the tracker balances that out. However, despite any updates, bugs, or glitches, I still believe that Niantic created an innovative experience to please Pokemon fans and even have have broad appeal. Not every part is perfect, but the developers managed to put systems together that made an addictive app. It would certainly be nice to have those multiplayer options that they said they would be adding. But even before that point, there are plenty of Pokemon fans still enjoying the hunt as well as people playing for the first time enjoying the novel game. Sorry to hear that your experience hasn’t been positive, and I hope that it either gets better for you or that you can move on to something that you enjoy more! Thank you for sharing your comments!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I am SWIMMING in Drowzees and Hypnos, I get like 10 a day of those. I see them almost as much as Pidgeys.

        The new patch has made finding things a little more difficult too.

        The city I live in, really isn’t giving me any variety not seen anything new for about a week now.

        It is much less buggy, but I am starting to lose interest now. Played it a lot in hills (doesn’t work no reception), played by beach (bloody Zubats).

        I need some kind of friend duelling or trading to keep my interest much longer. I can’t really get involved in Gym stuff, as everything gymmy is 2000CP+ and all I got is a 1000 Hypno.

        There is a Dewgong that is the closest Pokemon to me right now. Can’t find the sod!!!

        Liked by 1 person

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