Pokémon Go has swept the nation and Wesleyan; providing both entertainment and potential danger. Pokémon Go is an app that allows Pokémon from the world of the manga and anime to come to our world. The goal is to “catch ‘em all”.
This version is different than previous Pokémon games as players have to find the Pokémon by themselves, getting up and moving around the city. Players follow the Pokémon on their radar, catching more Pokémon to level up. Leveling up results in finding rarer and more valuable Pokémon, being able to train and battle with collected Pokémon, and eventually claim battle areas, or “gyms” as a player’s own. Companies have begun to buy out Poke-stops in an attempt to lure more people to their businesses.
Wesleyan is no exception to the mania. Playing around 5-6 times a week, sophomore, Hampton Henderson, is at level 14. So far, no limit to the number of levels has been found. Henderson’s strongest Pokémon is a 938 Vaporeon, gained from evolving an Eevee. “My friend and I once drove around my neighborhood at two in the morning for an hour trying to hatch eggs by driving a brisk 10 mph” said Henderson. “Sometimes one of my friends will pick me up and we’ll get dinner and then go play Pokémon Go.”
Playing almost every day, sophomore, Madeline Metz, is a bit of a more extreme player at level 21. Her best Pokémon is a Snorlax at CP 1200 (see picture). When questioned about whether it corrupts her daily schedule, she said, “Not at all, it actually makes me more social because I go outside and my whole family plays it so we have common ground to talk about.” “[When hatching eggs,] I once taped my phone to my ceiling fan so it thought I was walking….” Metz said.
While this has proven to be a beneficial exercise for the brain and body, it has also become slowly more hazardous. Pokémon Go has become a potential distraction in the car, with drivers slowing down to catch Pokémon, and cause wrecks. Reports of muggings are now showing up across the news with people having been lured to a spot under false pretenses of a rare Pokémon or a modulator. Police have issued warning about staying away from railroad tracks, hospitals, and looking before you cross the road.
For the most part, Pokémon Go is a fun-filled app for all ages, and those who unite under its banner have been of good company.