NO, I don’t hate it.
Pokémon Go (PG) has done some marvellous things: putting a franchise I adore back in the spotlight, helping the socially uncertain get out the front door and forming spontaneous communities of gamers across the planet.
It has also given the newspaper I write for some quirky stories to follow up.
Yet I have decided it is not for me.
I will start by saying I live on the outskirts of a town in a rural area. There is no 4G on any network here.
This means 3/5 times pokéstops don’t load, 1/2 times catching a pokémon crashes the app and 100% of the time the only monsters within a mile of me are 16 Weedles and a Pidgey.
A three mile walk will garner maybe 8 pokéstops that don’t crash if I’m lucky, but never any pokémon. Walking while catching makes the app freeze here.
It was all fine for a while, until the novelty wore off. I have played the app non-stop, but since I live in the middle of nowhere I was still only level 14 when I deleted it.
The three gyms in the town are all dominated by level 2,000+ Snorlax with level 25+ trainers. By the time I’m that level the level cap will have been increased.
Worse, Niantic addressed the lucky egg/evolve exploit by making the 10,000 Pidgeys and Weedles in my hometown impossible to catch with less then three pokéballs and a razberry. So I will never touch a gym podium.
I’m locked out of the community by being a country bumpkin.
Aside from the gameplay gripes I don’t have any need to play PG.
I get out the house regularly as is and when I am out, I don’t like having the distraction of a phone.
I like to interact with people directly, yet PG is actively encouraging me to put a barrier there.
I also use my phone… well, as a phone. So it isn’t half irritating pulling it out my pocket to see the battery at 5%. What makes it worse is that PG is usually frozen in the background; doing nothing but drink battery juice.
So thank you Niantic and The Pokémon Company, but no thank you. I’ll keep it all on my 3DS where my old friend Roo (Kangaskhan) lives with my childhood memories.