Let me preface this post by saying that I wasn’t at all hyped for Pokemon GO. I don’t really use any app that isn’t for social media purposes. I don’t play video games on my mobile phone. Even when I have the choice between handheld and console; console always wins. The only mobile games that I have invested any time in are Triple Triad from the Final Fantasy Portal and Miitomo.
I downloaded Pokemon GO partly because it released in Australia first and that is a rarity and partly because all of my close friends were playing it.
The first time I properly played it was on a Friday night. My friends and I had gone to Southbank to eat. 88 Topokki for what it’s worth. They had some amazing looking hotpots! We soon realised someone was using a lure at the nearby post office and decided to quickly pay and head towards it. There were a two or three other people there and it was my first experience with a lure.
I then realised that my GPS was utterly awful and kept putting me in stupid places which meant that I was unable to activate the PokeStops. I managed to fix this for the most part in the settings but it still plays up occasionally. However I am unsure if that is due to my phone or the buggy app.
Once we had finished at this location we began to walk around as a group and find as many Pokemon as we could. This ended up being a lot more entertaining that I had originally anticipated. When you are with a group of people the excitement is a lot more evident. We also walked past people doing the same thing and I found that somewhat amusing.
Eventually we head back towards my friends house as we all need to charge our phones by this point. We were but little Fletchlings taking flight and didn’t all have portable chargers at our disposal. We played a few rounds of Cat Tower and then went to the PokeStop outside of my friends house to use one of our own lures.
The most interesting thing about lures is that they attract a vastly greater number of humans than they do Pokemon. It wasn’t long before a car pulled up.
At the time I was shocked that people drove around specifically to follow lures so I not-so-stealthily walked towards their car and had a look inside to see what they were doing. I admit I probably had the same inconspicuous appearance as Kakashi when he happily watched Obito make out with a photo of Rin. Before long there were six cars parked up using our lure! We also had five people walk over to our spot. This was at 11:15pm in winter.
On Sunday I learnt that Riverheart Parklands in Ipswich hosted a number of PokeStops in close proximity to one another. This was the hub in the area and people constantly had lures going. When I got there I noticed the sheer amount of cars parked in the carpark! I had never seen anything like it. This is what my screen looked like when I arrived.
Other than the Valor gym it looked amazing! We quickly found a spot and tried to catch as many Pokemon as we could. I only took a few photos early on and it doesn’t show the scope of how many people were actually there. A conservative figure would be roughly one hundred people however.
Once we had finished at the Parklands we ended up at Queens Park as I had heard that it was really good. As well as a good place to find Aerodactyl. Well, it was a big let down. We ended up laying down in a car park with an active lure and nothing to show for it. On our way out we passed a gym that we took over as Instinct. Before long two cars pulled into this little side street to take over the gym. We left as we weren’t about the turf war life.
All in all, I am pleasantly surprised by how entertaining I found Pokemon GO to be. I haven’t been able to play it the last few days due to moving house and work and study commitments but I am looking forward to going back out to Riverheart in the next few days. There are only a few things that I would change. Firstly I would enable you to set your home as a PokeStop. Even with some restrictions as a thirty minute cool down period and a seven day cool down between changing addresses would work. Also the ability to add PokeStops would help. The game favours people who live in built up areas and if you live out of the city you are out of luck. Once the game is more stable I wonder what they will introduce. I look forward to it!