This isn’t going to be a long think piece about Pokémon Go. I’m sure there are people out there writing about the societal dangers and benefits of a game of this magnitude. For me, Pokémon Go isn’t about thinking too much; it’s simply about having fun. And man, am I having a lot of fun.
I never really played any Pokémon games when I was younger. By the time the game started gaining steam, I was already thinking about graduating high school and finding a date to prom; I already had enough going against me, I didn’t need carrying around a Gameboy to hurt my chances of finding a date any further. While I never played the video games or the card games, I would watch the cartoon every afternoon when I got home from class (college classes).
So I have a pretty limited knowledge of Pokémon. I’m pretty basic in that Pikachu is my favorite Pokémon and I pretty much just want to hang out with Jessie and James. Even with my limited love of Pokémon, though, I absolutely love Pokémon Go. I wasn’t going to download the game, but when I had dinner at my sister’s last week, she and my wife had already downloaded it. So I downloaded it as well and we went out as family to hunt some Pokémon.
Here are some of the reasons I love Pokémon Go.
People have criticized Pokémon Go by saying it’s just another reason for people to stare at their phones. While it may be true that Pokémon Go players stare at their phone, they’re usually doing it together. I went with my sister, wife, daughter and niece. On Sunday night our small group went together. Alycia and I had a great time taking Clara on a walk around the park while finding Pokémon. We were looking at our phones, but we were also doing something together. We also talked to other people we saw doing the same thing. We’re all going to be looking at our phones anyway; we might as well do it together instead of in our own rooms.
I’ve been running a lot lately. I don’t really enjoy it that much, but I know it’s good for me so I keep doing it. I may not like running that much, but I do like checking out my FitBit and seeing all my steps after my run. Pokémon Go gets me that same satisfaction without all the running. It is fun to see families out walking together, getting exercise and enjoying the outdoors. People always complain that kids aren’t spending enough time outside, but now they have a reason to see the light of day. Those eggs aren’t going to hatch themselves.
Go Have Fun
Like I said at the beginning of this post, I like Pokémon Go because it’s so much fun. It’s fun to walk around and find Pokéstops and it’s even more fun to track Pokémon and capture them. I haven’t even battled in the gym yet, which probably wouldn’t be that much fun because I’m only level 7 and my Pokémon are embarrassingly weak. I can only imagine that the game will get updated to make it even more fun, which will make me want to spend even more time playing it.
I imagine the hype will wind down and 30% of the people at the mall won’t always be playing Pokémon Go. But I can see myself playing a game that also makes me get exercise and spend time with my loved ones for a while. At least until I get a Pikachu. Then I might call it quits.
What do you or don’t you like about Pokémon Go?