A Far Fetched Fantasy Turning Into An Almost Reality
Pokemon trend is taking on almost everything like a storm. That’s right and this time Pikachu might just around be the corner. The Pokemon which remained a big part of our childhood and actually led to interesting fantasies such as, finding an actual Pokemon in real life, and also giving us hopes of becoming a star trainer like Ash Ketchum and fight battles with other gym trainers, and own our very own Pikachu.
Suddenly everyone’s getting caught up with Pokemon fever again. Let’s call attention to what’s leading to it. This July 2016 the mobile game developers Niantic, developed a free-to-play location based augmented reality game called Pokemon Go. It is released for both Android and iOS devices in US and Australasia, and Asian and European releases are yet to follow.
Pokemon Go lets the player use their phone’s GPS and clock, to detect and make Pokemon “appear” (actually on screen) when and where you are in the game so you can go and catch them. As you move around, different and more types of Pokemon will appear depending on where you are and what time it is. The basic idea is to encourage you to travel around the real world to catch Pokemon in the game.
The very basic reasons for this game to turn out to be such a big hit are:-
- It is available for free download, making it easily available for downloading and playing.
- It partly fulfills the fantasy that all Pokemon fans have had ever since the game first came out: What if the Pokemon were real and inhabited among our world?
Pokemon Go is an attempt at realizing what fans always wanted from Pokemon.
But first lets look back into the history of Pokemon before we explain any further. Pokemon games originated in Japan which was based on the premise of bug catching, which happens to be a popular hobby in Japan. In Pokemon, games take place in a world which is abundantly populated with exotic, powerful monsters whose appearances could be anything like- rats, snakes, dragons, dinosaurs, birds, eggs, trees, and even swords and the people are called as trainers who travel around the globe to tame these creatures and, in an ethically questionable manner, use them to fight against each other. The first gen of Pokemon i.e., Pokemon Red and Blue to the upcoming Pokemon Sun and Moon, began with 151 creatures in which the big goal was to collect all of these virtual creatures. Since the first gen the catalog has expanded to more than 720 creatures.(Pokemon Go features the original 151 creatures) The games had become a popular phenomenon in the 1990s widely known as - “Pokemania”. The original handheld games out in 1998 in America, followed by Yellow in 1999 and Gold and Silver in 2000. With the games tagged along the spinoffs as well like, Pokemon Snap and Pokemon Pinball in 1999 and a popular TV show, movies, trading cards, and a lot of other merchandise. Since the games came out for Nintendo’s handheld consoles, fans all around have shared the dream that what if the Pokemon games weren’t limited to the games’ world, what if they could become like Ash, the star trainer in the TV show and catch all of them. I wanted to own a Pikachu myself.
Unfortunately, they are not real, not as of yet, we never know with further evolution in technology we may be able to simulate a world in which Pokemon are real. This is what Pokemon Go attempts to do by tracking your time and location, the game imitates what it would be like if Pokemon were really roaming around us at all times, ready to be caught and collected. More interestingly, the game does a lot to make you explore your real-world environment at different times. If you happen to be near water bodies, you’ll be able to pick up water type Pokemon, or if you are in a park you’ll see bug or grass type Pokemon, and if you go out at night, you’ll see more nocturnal fairy and ghost types. The game is further enhanced by Poke Stops which are essentially notable locations in the real world marked on your in-game map. The game application makes it possible to install special items at Poke Stops that can help lure extra Pokemon, by indicating the stops with a pink glow on the map so the players know that hanging around will attract extra Pokemon.
The game’s depth of making the players travel to catch them all is one way that it has become the very best. Also more importantly, this fans of the original Pokemon are now adults give an extra benefit to this idea by hitting a sweet spot of nostalgia, which has contributed the most in boosting its popularity.