Pokémon GO was launched 21 days ago; and I have had the game installed on my phone for 20 of those days. I have kept a close eye on the progress of the game, and have seen the game trend to the top of Internet, dethroning kittens, puppies and Emma Watson. Not only did the game become the most talked about subject, but also the most downloaded and played mobile game in the world, reaching 75 million installs on Android and iOS.
Yes, this is the fastest that any game has reached this milestone, and Pokémon GO has not even launched globally. Plus, Pokémon GO has created trouble for law and order across the world as players jumped fences, broke and entered private properties. Many police departments and medical services have put up signs asking players to be careful while hunting for Pokémon. Who would’ve thought it will come to this in 2016? But then some store owners have profited from the game as their locations were turned into PokéStops.
Then there’s the first success story as a New Yorker caught all 142 Pokémons available in US. But here I am in Delhi, nesting with my 10 Pidgeys, 12 Ratatas and 18 Zubats. Ok, that may be an exaggerated number. And here’s my problem with this game. Being a competitive person, I feel annoyed that I am unable to even reach level five, let alone catch rare and powerful Pokémons.
I’ve tried really hard to play the game, but it is difficult to find the time to roam around on the streets looking for Pokémon. Not if you have a job (which involves writing on these damned Pokémons), or a social life or chores at home. So how do I find mythical Pokémons like Zapdos, Articuno, Mewtwo, Moltres, Mew or Ditto, when I can’t even find a Pikachu (silent sobs inside for that last one)?
Here’s the thing with Pokémon GO: The game demands way too much of your time. The man who caught all Pokémon in New York reportedly walked eight hours day to be the first one to ‘catch ’em all.’ That’s right: eight hours a day; I doubt that anyone I know, including myself, will ever find the time to hunt all these Pokémon down. Of course, if you do well in the game, there’s the whole charade of trying to keep control of your gym, doing battles with other players, training your Pokémon, etc. The list of tasks this game demands is endless.
Plus, the game has me convinced that I’m the unluckiest person in the city of Delhi. All I encounter are Pidgeys and Zubats everywhere. Till date I haven’t encountered a Caterpie, Eevee or a Magikarp; all Pokémon that are widely considered as easiest to find. A friend of mine has 59 Pokémons, of which only 22 are unique; and she has been playing the game since day one. Her biggest problem? She can only find time to play the game while commuting to and from work.
Considering that I commute more than three hours each day, to and from work, it makes me wretchedly miserable that I cannot play Pokémon GO during that time. I blame patchy Internet connectivity for that; thanks Delhi Metro.
I have tried to play the game while commuting in a metro and travelling in a car, and was able to catch only thin air. I have tried playing the game many times while walking outside, but usually closed it within five minutes since I never found anything other than the Pokémons I already possess. Enough with the Ratatas already. The game raises a question for someone like me: Do I have the time or patience for this game? Love for Pokémons aside, the answer is no.