Pokemon Go is now in full swing! If the non-stop posting on social media about the game wasn’t enough to show its popularity, the game also broke the record for most downloads in the first week of its release, according to The Verge.
People have been flocking to shops, museums, and churches to discover Pokemon and Pokestops. The app has become far more than a game, and more like a social and cultural movement. I personally have found myself interacting with people more frequently through the game than I would otherwise, and others have expressed the same to me. One article in Forbes discussed how the game is “bringing people together” and described it as a “phenomenon.”
The game has truly transformed the world into a massive Pokemon region. Trainers of all different shapes and sizes are catching and comparing Pokemon all over the world. And perhaps what is most fascinating is that there seems to be little competition, at least on a trainer-to-trainer level. While some social media posts have jokingly insulted the intelligence of members of opposing teams, ultimately people seem more interested in the shared experience of capturing Pokemon. From the highest leveled trainers, including one individual who has already caught them all, to the people who pick up the game casually, the game has acted as more of a social media platform than a contest.
But the competition is still real, it just appears more passionate than mean-spirited. And the well-meaning competitive nature may grow, according to some updates reported in an article published by N4BB. The article states that Niantic has already released plans for major updates to the game, not just for fixing bugs. Added updates include trading, which will help players who don’t get to travel as far fill their Pokedex; customization of gyms and Pokestops, though it is unclear what that fully entails; and a leader board truly capturing who is the very best that no one ever was.
Along with these added updates are an additional 569 Pokemon who have not appeared in the game or even been hinted at yet, and that is not including the legendaries who have not yet been spotted.
Though the game is still only in its infancy, it appears its popularity will continue to move upward as Niantic and the Pokemon Company find new ways to bring people together.