Pokemon GO to the Park!

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve no doubt heard of Pokémon GO. And if you do live under a rock, no offense meant.
(I mean, really, I find you fascinating. Please send me a picture of your rock. I bet you have a swell bug collection.)

Anyway. Back to the game. Daughter has been taking a lot of walks lately, so I’ve been keeping her company. Come to find out, our nearby park is a goldmine, Pokémon-wise.

You know the park, right? I’ve written about it Here and Here and Here. Normally it’s a quiet park. Rarely do I run into people.

Pokémon GO changed that.

People in park

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not complaining. Much.

It seems like a fun game and it’s getting people outdoors for a bit of exercise. Plus, it’s fun to see Dog getting involved:

dog and pokemon go

Have to admit, the first time I accompanied Daughter to the park and saw the crowd shuffling around, staring at their phones, I thought they looked like extras in a sci-fi flick.

Or maybe a zombie movie. You know. With iPhones.

But then I noticed all the dogs being walked, kids and parents playing the game together, I even saw a grandma. It was sweet.

250px-149DragoniteThen at one point, someone got excited because somewhere in the park was a Dragonite. About a dozen people wound up joining him in the hunt.

I’ve heard some of the odd things that have happened with the game. (You can read about them here.) But even so, any game that gets a bunch of strangers walking around a park together, looking for a little orange dragon — that’s a great game in my book.

And here’s something I saw on Facebook:

Tired dog meme

Parks getting utilized, strangers hunting dragons together, entertaining news stories and above average memes. I like this game.

What are your thoughts?



31 thoughts on “Pokemon GO to the Park!

  1. This reminds me of the geocache craze a few years back. I think that the technology of Pokemon GO could also be used to steer players to collect other things besides silly Japanese icons. Maybe a game could be created where players go to locations to collect educational, geographical, and cultural experiences, or are rewarded for good deeds, volunteering, and charitable efforts?

    1. Careful Joe, you sound borderline grumpy. 😉
      Actually, museums, churches, cemeteries, historical sites, are often designated landmarks and so show up in the game. Presumably people look up from their phone occasionally to take in their surroundings, right? 😊

      1. Yeah that’s a part I really like is that there are pokestops where you can get items. The stops are generally interesting landmarks which appeals to the explorer in me. 🙂

  2. We have mixed feelings on the craze. Yes, it is great to see people out walking instead of sitting on couches, but staring blindly at their phones, oblivious to the world around them causes us to be a little concerned.

    1. Well, I wouldn’t say the people I saw were *completely* oblivious. No one was stumbling or bumping into each other, and several were swapping tips and stories of where they’d been. I rather think a lot of the stories we’re hearing are exaggerated for the news, and I doubt it will last terribly long in any case.

  3. I have also be rock hibernating – Yes, I had heard the words: No, I still don’t now what it is about. I like my rock, all my favourite things are here, my kids, my new grandchild, my bed – 🙂

    1. Truthfully, I still don’t understand it completely, and it’s been explained to me numerous times.
      I’m sure your rock is very lovely, Claudette, and well-decorated too. 😊

  4. I like it and have played a little bit of it. I’m actually a gamer and played the first Pokemon when I was in middle school. I didn’t really get into it back then, but I enjoy this version. It’s cool that it gets people outside. The only thing, is that you do have to stare at your phone and I don’t like that aspect. It also drains your battery so you’ve got to make sure you have a charger near by. I can be overly considerate person too, so I don’t like to play it inside buildings because I feel like I get in people’s way by suddenly stopping to catch a Pokemon.

    1. Finally, someone who plays it! You sound a lot like my daughter, she shuts it off when she enters a building too. She’s considering getting the Pokemon plus when it’s released so she won’t have to stare at her phone.
      From what I’ve been seeing on Facebook, I think some people are wasting more energy complaining about the game than other people are playing it!

  5. Our local park was inundated with Pokemoners yesterday. I stopped counting around 70 (I’m not a player). What I found amusing was that most overlooked the real-live, amazing creatures under their noses – heron, turtles, ducklings – to pursue digital monsters.

  6. Okay, much to my chagrin because I love a party, but it looks like I’m going to be the wet noodle in this bunch. Although the game has its perks and intriguing angles, the game is also insensitive at times in where it directs the players to search for the little critters.Two cases in point: The Holocaust Museum in DC and the Arlington National Cemetery. These are places of quiet reflection, not places for gamers to be running around and giggling and “capturing” anything. Both locations have had to post signs advising that the game is not appropriate, and they have had to deal with other visitors upset over the situation. The game designers need to issue a new version that is more culturally responsible.

    Now, all that mess aside, I feel compelled to add a personal note to Christi: You know I think you’re pretty swell, and this post was clever and funny as always, so I did hesitate to even say anything. But it just didn’t feel right for me to not mention this aspect of the game, a reminder that everyone should always strive to have fun, but be respectful while you’re having it. (Mea culpa for being the noodle, and if I have to turn in my passport to Follywood, I will do so with heavy heart and possible self-pity imbibing…)

    1. Ah, see, I was prepared for this. Yes, I heard of both of those cases and I understand all reservations completely.
      I also heard that the company who designed the app is actually a very small business — true, Nintendo is huge, but their designers are not always. The ‘spots’ and ‘gyms’ were selected from registered landmarks, so that’s how those places came to be part of the game. Unfortunately, the inappropriateness of those locations wasn’t discovered until afterwards.
      Also, the overwhelming popularity of the game has completely thrown this small company, and they are scrambling to fix bugs and remove locations. So while their app is a hit and a huge boon for them, it’s also turning into a bit of a nightmare.
      So, not sure where the blame lies, if there is blame to dish out. The small company who had no idea their game would be so popular? Nintendo, who should have foreseen it and predicted the issues? The overly competitive players who behaved inappropriately?
      All of the above?
      Maybe we can take comfort in the fact that it is a craze, and as such will die down soon enough.
      Brian, your passport has earned an extra stamp: Quality Control & Superior Noodle Taster

  7. I tried out the game a week ago and all I could think about was when and where the next Pokemon was going to show up. Even while I was walking, I wasn’t there, in a sense. I was barely aware of the seat I was sitting in, or the streets I was crossing. The latter being the most alarming. I was too focused on being ready for when ever a Pokemon would show up! Thus, I decided to put the game to rest, as I’ve got enough aloofness without it!

    1. Haha! Well, kudos to you for knowing your limit! I’d probably have the same problem. My daughter does pretty well, but I think it’s because she prefers to watch people. 🙂

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s