CHENNAI: A year ago you would see college and school kids walking around with their nose buried in their phones, going on a hunt for Pokémon. With a mission to catch the rarest and the best Pokémon, people have gone far and to unimaginable places. Finding a Charmander in a classroom or Pikachu in temples became quite common. Before, Pokémon Go was the talk of the town, but since then the hype has died down.
Though Pokémon Go was launched in a few countries and was officially unavailable in India for almost half-a-year since its launch, it did not stop avid gamers from installing and playing this addictive game. Kaushik R, a city-based software engineer, says that he managed to catch 229 Pokémon out of 232. “I started playing the game when the world started playing and was addicted to it,” he says. His best catch was a Dragonite, which is rare in the game.
A location-based augmented reality game, Pokémon Go was made accessible for both iOS and Android users. The game would use the player’s location to match it with the location in the game, hence making the player’s location look similar to that of the Pokémon world.
The players have to catch Pokémon with their Pokéballs when they find one, and each of these Pokémon gets added to the Pokédex, a Pokémon database. These Pokémons are later personalised and evolved into their better forms – Bulbasaur, Ivysaur, Venusaur, Jigglypuff, Wigglytuff and so on. The Pokédex would give out all information and data about each of the Pokémon that the player has collected like its weight, height and the type of Pokémon it is, hence making it easier to use them for battles later on.
“I used to play Pokémon Go during class hours. I guess nobody ever played the game inside my classroom, because there were a lot of rare Pokémon in there. I played so much that I was asked by friends not to use my phone inside the class,” laughs Rangaraj Ramaswamy.
Similar was the addiction for Radhika Ramesh, a media professional who says that she used to purchase Pokeballs from the App Store. “When I started playing, I used to play for five or six hours at a stretch. One day I was so into the game, that I didn’t realise I was in a bus and was playing it till I reached the last stop,” she shares.
The city gamers were crazy about it, but a year later, nobody seems to be talking about it. “I started playing when it was available on iOS. But soon I realised that it took too much internet and space on my phone. So I uninstalled the app,” says Rangaraj.Deeksha Biddappa, a photography student who was also a fan of the game, says, “Initially I was so addicted to the game that I used to walk to different places to catch a Pokemon. It became difficult for me to get over the addiction and off my phone. Hence, I quit the game,” she says.
While many quit owing to addiction, Sooraj Nair, stopped playing because he felt the game got boring after a while. “I was excited when I caught my Pikachu, but then I just found it too dull and uninstalled the game,” he avers.