Beware, you enter the realm of a Pokemon Go think-piece. This be a dangerous place. A place where people believe they have the philosophical and sociological answers attributed to Pokemon Go. Are they stealing our data? Is this the end of civilisation as we know it? And is a Dratini worth running across traffic for?
To all of those questions the answer is no. But i will discuss the one in the title, is it good or bad. I don’t mean that as ‘is it a good game?’ I mean the question as is it a good thing for human beings.
The app itself is poor. It crashes a lot, the GPS doesn’t understand how long a kilometre is and the tracking system shown with footsteps has stopped working completely.
The real question is are human beings supposed to have this? It feels like we’re a three-year old who’s just been given a new toy, which at any point we might choke on. Some people already have, one man fell in a lake as he was live streaming Pokemon Go. Two men fell off a 90ft cliff while they tried to catch Pokemon and one girl was hit by a car while probably tracking that elusive Porygon.
So the stupidity of humans has been made apparent once again, but there are points for the argument that it is a positive thing for society. The app has got people walking and getting fit rather than sitting at home. Some scientists have also said it can help people suffering from depression and anxiety by forcing them to get out of the house and interact with people around them. Also it’s a really fun game.
So positives and negatives on each side. I can see the positives but my question is: are we making any memories? Yes we walk around and see our local area but only through the lenses of the Pokemon Go map. We see landmarks and interesting art pieces through little pictures on our screens rather than actually seeing them. The memories all blend into one with the same Weedles and Pidgeys popping up every few steps.
The memories we’re making are of our phones. Yes, there are some people who have met new friends but for the most part people are still looking at their phones but they’re doing it in a nicer setting than on the sofa.
The game has also shown that it has be used for malicious means and with a player base of 9.5 million people in the USA alone it’s not hard to find people playing it. So with stories of robberies taking place connected to the game, the human race has shown that once again it can take something beautiful and warp it, just like it did with the internet.
So is Pokemon Go a good game for us puny humans? Yes. Yes because it helps people to be fitter and happier. Yes because millions of people are discovering Pokemon for the first time. And yes because it reminds us that we extremely fallible beings and that the cutesy world of Pokemon is only fiction we can hope to copy.
So is it a good thing for humans? Let me know in the poll (which will hopefully work)