I’ve Been Sucked Into Pokemon Go

2016-07-16 04.21.33In retrospect it’s not surprising that I’ve been sucked into a video game, because that happens all the time. But this one is something special. Not just because of what I take from it, but because of what I’ve seen it do to and for the people around me. It was also inevitable. As a long-time Pokemon player (it was my very first game for my very first handheld console), the dream to catch Pokemon in real life was always there, and now we have this — far, far sooner than I ever expected.

I’ve had it for about a week now, and I love it for a number of reasons. On the surface it’s pretty simple, and it’s a lot like Ingress, which I also enjoyed. But last night I went downtown where a bunch of people decided to get together and throw a Pokemon Go event. By “a bunch,” of course, I mean “about five thousand at least.” Every parking structure in the area was full, and there were so many people it was hard to get around. Bands were playing, people were handing out badges and water bottles, grouping up to help each other find Pokemon, etc. And everyone was so friendly. My friends and I met up with a couple hunting a Bulbasaur and we walked together for hours. And there were so many PokeStops I almost couldn’t get to them all before the first ones were refreshing again. Not to mention everyone had a lure. Continue reading

Why Watch People Play Video Games?

Jimmy Kimmel doesn’t understand why anyone who likes video games would voluntarily choose to watch other people play video games. He likened the phenomenon to “going to a restaurant and having someone eat your food for you.” Not quite accurate, but it’s a late night talk show. Comedy (and thus, exaggeration), not accuracy, is the goal.

But then, it’s not like his sentiments are uncommon. Video games becoming socially accepted at all is still a recent thing. It used to be you could be called a nerd (because that was bad back then) and made fun of for liking games, and that was from people in our own age group. Older generations would probably have a harder time understanding it, much like it’s hard for them to understand “the Google” or the concept of using a computer without getting infected with spyware every other week because you keep using Internet Explorer even though I totally put Chrome on there just yesterday and told you where to find it and you keep uninstalling the security software I put on there to keep you safe for god knows what reason can you just please just not have a technological disaster for a whole month oh my god. Continue reading