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Pokémon GO - Game Review

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by Jeni Wilson (subscribe)
Teacher educator and author of many teacher reference books. Amused by random ideas and loves random acts of kindness. Enjoys writing humour...seriously!Please see my Instagram: wilsonjeni
Published July 20th 2016
Got to Catch them All
Well at least it's got my three sons out of their chairs and going for a walk. This newest tech fad is taking the world (and my house) by storm. It's creating a frenzy amongst teenagers and adults alike. Using their phones to track these evasive fictitious creatures, you'll see the trackers huddled in groups in all sorts of places.

People are flocking across freeways stopping traffic, trespassing and even being locked in cemeteries trying to catch a Pokémon.

They may be fictitious but Pokémon trainers are dead set obsessed with catching and training Pokémon to battle each other for sport. My understanding is that many of the players who loved the Pokémon card game are revisiting their childhood love in this newer tech version.

You might think this craze is crazy but according to one player 'It's a child' s dream for Pokémon to be real. I remember thinking if only I could catch them for real.' It's like a high tech role-play version of the card game crossed with scavenger hunt crossed with orienteering and geocaching. In this virtual activity you must visit the places in the real world.

Dare I say that these previous outdoor seeking activities have gained popularity over the years as a worthwhile and potentially intellectually challenging ... and now they have evolved as Pokémon Go.

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The game doesn't have an extensive walk through feature for beginners and there's no guidebook, so you're basically on your own to figure it out for yourself. It's heavy-duty problem solving that kids actually want to solve.

There are some basic tips but everything else is learn on the job. For example, you are told what to do on a battle strip but that's about it.

Here's some hints if you want to catch a Pokémon anime creature:

When you start you need to pick fire, water or grass or Pikatu (but need to walk outside of the vicinity of the three Pokémon three times). Then you'll need to walk up to 2 km to get Pikatu. With every Pokémon you capture, you get 3 candy per capture that you can use to transfer. When you transfer, you can get an additional 3 candy. Since Pikatu only has one evolution, you'll need 50 candy.

There is a guide on the screen of three steps, two steps and one steps. This tells you there is a nearby Pokémon. You need to spin the disc on the screen to find items.

Pokémon start in basic forms. They need candy to evolve. I want a Charmanda to evolve into a Charizard!

If can choose to use the camera option, it's more realistic but you don't have to. You can see the Pokémon in the places you are. This morning the cheeky Eevie was on our kitchen table. Lucky the dogs didn't get her first.

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Every area has a specific kind of Pokémon common to that area, so you are going to have to stretch your legs beyond your locality to catch a variety. You need to collect items to lure random Pokémon to your area and as they only last for about half an hour you need to be quick.

You can get more items from certain landmarks. If you put your items there, you will attract random and wild Pokémon to that area. Truly the excitement of enticement is nearly too much!

The more you play, the more you walk around, the more Pokémon you are going to get. Darn and drat you can't trick it like a Fitbit by waving your arm around. You have to move a considerable distance to register movement. Note this game is very harsh on battery life but about the same as using a GPS. There is a power saving option. This can cause the game to fade or crash.

I have to say when I first heard of Pokémon Go I thought it was just for little boys who have never grew up, another useless app that will occupy my kids mindlessly for hours with no purpose or promise ... but I have been wrong before!

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Please post more hints for budding Pokie zealots.

I'm off now, I've got the chance to catch a Pikatu. Got to catch them all!
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Why? Relive your Childhood Fantasy
Where: Everywhere
Cost: Free
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