By Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)
If Pokémon GO is going to keep its hold as a popular game, perhaps Niantic Inc. needs to stop making baby steps when adding new features to the program. The news from Monday is hardly exciting. I was hoping to hear of a feature that will get me stepping to the frigid outside. I have caught all that I can in North America (by evolving after doing a lot of buddy walking) and until there are other methods to earn coin/candy, I’m not constantly duking it out for control of a gym.
Not a lot of people north of the 45th parallel and perhaps a few States down, will be venturing out much — if at all — during the Winter season. I could be taking advantage of this fact to find really out of the way gyms nobody wants to venture out to because of the weather, but I’m sure those hardcore players are doing the same. I’m not prepared to deal with those die-hards.
The company is thinking small if they assume everyone around the world are still playing. The USA only promotions, namely tie-ins with Sprint and Starbucks, will only have a percentage of the declining player base and only a specific portion of the user base interested. The Santa hat Pikachu variation will definitely have the Collector type trainers seeking him out, and thankfully players worldwide have access to it. The decoration remains after evolving. For the most part, this sugar coat deal is nothing big to be excited over.
As an android mobile user with a device lacking a gyroscope, I’m unable to take snaps of Santa Pikachu in funny situations. In free wifi areas, I can pull out my tablet with the game installed and look around, but will there be a ‘chu on top of that pear tree? I’m not counting on it!
I really wanted to see the vibrating bug fixed and the Sightings / Nearby tracker altered so anyone can switch between the two. To have that screen tabbed to either located at stops or wandering the wilds will eventually get implemented. As for when, is Niantic listening? To have a game decide which pocket monster is easier for the player to go catch is not interactive.
The new baby Pokémon add-on is a wee bit cute. They are not powerful pocket monsters unless Togepi’s metronome power is somehow recreated in game to allow it to mimic its opponent’s attack. Ditto does that in the game, so in theory, the computer code can be implemented. Other cuties to seek out are Pichu, Igglybuff, Cleffa, Magby, Elekid and Smoochum and they are only obtainable through spinning stops for eggs. 10K eggs are required to find the latter three. The ploy by Niantic Inc to continue to make money with this product is a clever one. Players will have to work hard to keep their footholds at gyms for tiny coin gains or spend real money to buy lots of incubators in hopes to hatch them all.
I’m not the only observer of this game who feels slighted by the hype of the news released on Monday for the game. Paul Tassi at Forbes Magazine best represents the feeling of a community when he wrote, “I don’t really think a tiered rollout of a new gen is a good idea. What happens now? Gen 2 Pokémon are slowly trickled into the game in weird events like this? That’s a lame way to go about it.”