What is Pokémon Go And Why Is Everyone Playing It?

 

 

If you’ve been out and about over the last few days you may have seen countless people walking around, stopping suddenly, eyes attached to their phones, swiping wildly across the screens then shouting in joy, fist pumping, and moving on. You may have even heard the words “Pokéball”, “Pidgey” and “Evolve.” This is all because Pokémon Go was released last week and taking the world by storm. What is Pokémon Go!? Pokémon Go is a phone app game that allows players to catch, train and compete with little virtual creatures called Pokémon (short for pocket monster and pronounced Poke-e-mon). What makes this game so unique is that it uses the phone’s camera to augment reality and show a superimposed image of the Pokémon in the real world.

This offers players the chance to really feel as though they are Pokémon trainers.

What is Pokémon?

Pokémon is a craze that started in the 90’s from Japan. The little creatures and Pokémon trainers, who are human characters, are featured in video games, television shows and movies. There is a chance that you’ve seen Pikachu before but weren’t sure what he was.

 

What is the point of the game? The game is a collection game designed to get players to go outside and get exercise! Essentially, players have to go, walk around their neighborhood looking for Pokémon to collect. The app uses GPS to create a cartoonish, but accurate map of the area around the player and indicates where different Pokémon can be hiding. As a player approaches the location of the creature in real life, the creature on the screen becomes clickable and, essentially, catch-able. Players catch Pokémon using Pokéballs, little black, red and white balls that capture the creatures so the players can use them to train and fight other players later on. (I know that sounds horrible, but that is one of the greatest dilemmas of the Pokémon world – Is it right to capture these animals and use them to battle each other?) So, this is a game for people to collect fictional creatures and go outside and walk around a bit? Yes, and no. Yes, this game is designed to get people to walk around outside. It is also designed for players to “Catch them all!” and collect all of the different types, or species of creatures. However, it is also about getting people to work together as a team and go to new places. Within the app, popular locations, such as museums, sculptures and local attractions have been changed into Gyms. At a Gym, players can use their Pokémon to fight others. Players are given the choice to pick between three teams, those teams can control Gyms, but opposing teams can fight to take control of the Gyms. Working with other members of a team, whether that member is a friend of the player or a stranger, is the best way to achieve victory over an opposing team at a Gym.

Essentially, Pokémon Go is an app designed to get people out of the house while playing a game that has been dear to fan’s hearts since the 1990’s. Anyone who grew up watching the show, playing the Nintendo games or even collecting the cards will fall in love with the idea of being able to collect these creatures in the real world. Newcomers will love the game because it’s addicting and a great way to get outside, meet new people and see your local sights.

According to CNN, since the game was released, Nintendo stock has skyrocketed and the app is getting more daily active users than Twitter. This game isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, so if you’re at all interested, give it a try.

NOTE: The game does have server issues that result in freezing, lagging and the loss of that Pokémon you’ve been trying to catch for the last ten minutes. Niantic says that there will be updates coming, so it could be beneficial to wait until then for newcomers to download the app.

Originally posted on Womanista.com.

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