Geek Culture Features

Pokemon GO: Gotta Catch ’em All!

Pokemon has taken over the world once again in an all new gaming experience. You can feel like a true trainer and catch them with your phone.

What is a Pokemon? What is the big “Hoopla” about Pokemon Go?

Did you know that Pokemon is short for the original Japanese title Pocket Monsters? Neither did I! It is a media franchise created by Satoshi Tajiri in the Mid 90’s in collaboration with Nintendo, Game Freak and Creatures. It is a very simple concept where humans, known as Pokemon Trainers, catch and train in order to battle each others Pokemon for sport.

It all began as a pair of video games that were made for the original Game Boy that were developed by Game Freak and published by Nintendo. As of today, the franchise has grown exponentially in many facets of the industry ranging from video games, animated television shows, movies, trading cards, comic books and toys. It is the second-most successful video game-based franchise in the world behind Mario.

Growing up in the 90’s, the closest I ever got to a Pokemon was by watching the shows, playing the games on either Game boy, Game boy Advance , Game Boy Color and even on the N64. I’m pretty sure we all remember Pokemon Stadium and  Pokemon Snap! Having such a vivid imagination as a child and even now, my own dog Buddy was my Pikachu. I spent time training him to the best of my capacity.

Now everyone can be like our beloved young trainers: Ash, Brock and Misty and become the very best Pokemon Trainer with the mobile app Pokemon Go created by Niantic which has been released about a couple of weeks ago  in Canada.  The game allows its players to capture, battle and train virtual creatures using the GPS to walk around the city and locate various PokeStops and Arenas and the camera to see and find the Pokemons whereabouts in our own world.

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It is quite a smart concept if you ask me for it demands their players to go outside and explore the city with a purpose. Ambitious players will be spending more time outdoors then indoors which can create another debate with the parents. Watch out for you might hear “ Where were you? You’re spending too much time outside!”

This brings me to the following question: Is Pokemon Go a trend? In my opinion yes it is and I would not be surprised if it becomes a part of something even bigger than a simple fad. It has completely revolutionized the traditional concept of gaming by using your city as your very own playground instead of staying home and discovering an in-game world. Records have shown that by July 20th, the game was downloaded by more than 30million people worldwide. Apple claimed that it has set the record for the most downloaded app in the App Store in just one week. That is impressive!

Put simply, all that you need to do is look around you next time you walk outside to see how popular Pokemon Go has become in such a short period of time. If you’ve ever been to Los Angeles, you will know what I am talking about. That group of tourists that flock around the Hollywood Walk of Fame with their camera phones out walking around like Zombies. Now imagine that 24/7. This is exactly what is going on in my city-Montreal.

You will witness people of every social classes and ages trying to catch the most Pokemon.  I have also known people in my own circle who have been against the idea of joining in the movement saying it was dangerous by referring to the number of people who got hit by cars, or found dead bodies or chaotic scenarios like the Vaporeon Stampede in Central Park. They are not wrong, but ironically, after negatively commenting on the game, they themselves have downloaded the app and competed against me and many of my co-workers, trying to compare who has the most variety of Pokemons. 

In my opinion, I still believe that it is a brilliant idea to demand your players to go out of their gaming caves and explore the city in order to catch Pokemons just like in the 90’s and early 2000’s animated shows. But unfortunately, some people seem to forget that it is just a game at the end of the day. They tend to get overly excited and put themselves and others in harms way.  I won’t lie I have been getting mixed feelings regarding the App for many reasons.

On a positive note, the game brings people together. It is a fun and interactive game that makes people walk around the city and explore new areas of their hometown.  For true Pokemon fanatics, there’s a little bit of nostalgia and reminisce whenever they open the app and catch a Pokemon. I too have had nostalgic moments. I found myself humming JigglyPuff’s lullaby when I caught her. I’m pretty confident to say that I wasn’t the only one! The App is a sheer delight and a true child’s dream come true.

On a negative note, like I mentioned previously, the game could be dangerous for everyone by those who tend to have a more addictive personality. In the news, we’ve seen many cases of dead bodies retrieved, stampedes, murder, burglaries, etc.

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Pokemon Go has opened the door to new gaming possibilities. With the game still fresh and new, expect to see many upcoming updates and patches for there is a lot of room for improvement. To all Pokemon Go players, be safe. Always be aware of your surroundings and  catch’em all! Are you the very best? Now is your time to shine!

Once again stay tuned with IMGMR on today’s hottest games. Happy Gaming!

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Geek Culture FeaturesTech Features

English writer and editor for IMGMR. My heart is and will forever be in Hyrule. A Zumba Instructor by day and A Gamer Chick by night. I enjoy competitive and strategic gameplay like League of Legends, RPGs and much more. Behind this girly facade lies a inner geek with a big appetite not just for food but also for new gaming experiences.

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