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Catch the Pokémon GO fever

Pokemon GO.jpg

So Pokémon GO is rolling out around the world for iOS and Android devices - which is an opening line for an article I never thought I would have to write, but we all need to expand our horizons and experiences every now and then.

The free-to-download game is an augmented-reality one that allows players to interact with their surrounding environments and “catch wild Pokémon hiding in their midst.” This is done by catching the encountered Pokémon via the smartphone’s touch screen to “throw a Poké Ball.” These weapons of destruction (the Poké Balls, not your phone), as well as “other special items” are available at PokéStops which are in turn located at “interesting places, such as public art installations, historical markers and monuments.”

The game features a variety of Pokémon species that will be more commonly found in their natural habitat. Players can level up and catch increasingly more powerful Pokémon, while gaining access to more-powerful items. There is a team element to the game as well as the ability to “take photos of Pokémon encountered in the world.” This all sounds a little like we will need to prepare for a wave of selfies with Pokémons and interesting photobombs from unsuspecting passers-by.

It’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt

At the time of writing, Pokémon GO is not yet (officially) available locally but it has been released in Japan, Australia, New Zealand and the US. Some eager gamers have discovered a workaround for Android to download the game in currently unsupported countries, but that has also come with rumours of your account being banned. Whether this is true or not, many have started deleting the (workaround version of the) game from their device just in case. So consider yourself warned.

Meanwhile in Australia, the Northern Territory Police have also issued a stern warning and words of encouragement to “budding Pokemon Trainers out there using Pokemon Go”.

In their Facebook post which is actually quite chuckle-worthy, they go on to say that “whilst the Darwin Police Station may feature as a Pokestop, please be advised that you don't actually have to step inside in order to gain the pokeballs. It's also a good idea to look up, away from your phone and both ways before crossing the street. That Sandshrew isn't going anywhere fast. Stay safe and catch 'em all!.”

Ok. It’s all just fun and games

Well, it’s certainly fun for Square Enix that’s for sure as they welcomed Pokémon GO to the world in a parody video referencing their own GO series of games.

If you’re looking for more information regarding the game, you can head to the website.

So Pokémon GO – will you catch it when it arrives in South Africa? Feel free to comment below.

[Sources: Eurogamer | CNET | Press Release]

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