Pokemon Go Raiding Impacts More Than Just Our Pokedex
After a year, the Legendary Faction birds are here! Have you got yours? Which one do you want the most?
It has been a while since I dropped an opinion piece, so I thought I would do that with something close to my heart: Pokemon. I have been playing Pokemon Go! since 6 July 2016, and have never taken a break. Each day, I launch the Game App and try to catch as many Pokemon as possible along my route to work, between meetings and even over weekends while going about my routines. I am a little strange though, and I hope I am not the only one that does this, but I like to keep at least 1x Pokemon of each kind, including Evolution Stages (1x Abra, 1x Kadabra and 1x Alakazam), yes it fills my Pokemon Storage faster, but it gives me a sense of pride knowing I have one of each. I have been playing Solo and have finally reached Level 29 (of 40), but with the release of Legendaries and their Raiding requirements, I needed some help. Queue the Pokemon Community!
The first Legendary birdie to hit Raid Gyms, is Articuno, and I made a few attempts with my brother on Monday before deciding to create a WhatsApp Group in Alberton in an attempt to gather a “few” interested people to assist in the fights. Little did I know, that there was already an epic WhatsApp group in existence, and that they were already very proactive at hunting down gyms and burning down the Raids with 12+ Trainers per fight. Alongside Articuno, Lugia (2nd Generation Legendary) is available for capture, with trainers speculating he will be here until the last birdie (Zapdos) leaves. On Thursday, 27 July 2017, I caught my first Lugia and Articuno, and I did it with the help of the Alberton Pokemon Community! Thanks guys!
I Want To Be The Very Best!
…like no-one ever was! Well, at least I can try. I knew there were a lot of players, but this week, I realized that there were a lot more trainers than I could have imagined, not just in Alberton or Johannesburg, but within a 500m radius of where I live!
As stated earlier, I used to play solo, but now, I have a bunch of like-minded individuals that all share in the same goals and excitement of the game, and I doubt I will be able to go back to being a Poke-loner again. When the game first started, it was all about which Team you were on: Mystic (Blue), Valor (Red) or Instinct (Yellow). We would make attempts at booting each other out of gyms and try to hold down an area for as long as possible. We would even go as far as “bad mouthing” one another’s faction to show supremacy… but not anymore. Yes, there is still “rivalry banter”, but it is in jest (for now at least).
The Return Of The Trainer(s)
With the release of the Legendary Pokemon, many trainers that left the game early have come back to claim their Legendaries, or at least try, but that seems to be proving very difficult for the lower levels or for the guys that have not achieved Gold Medal Status on the required Pokemon Types to increase their chances at catching Articuno and Lugia. In order to catch Articuno, it is advised to have your Ice and Flying Badges at Gold status for a Full +6 Catch Bonus. For Lugia it is advised to have your Psychic and Flying Badges at Gold status for a Full +6 Catch Bonus. This, coupled with a Great! or Excellent! throw, after applying a Golden Razz Berry should increase the abysmal 2% Catch Chance up to a 40%-45% Catch Chance.
This is where the Community started to shine, especially tonight! Many trainers have been battling it out with Articuno all week and failing at the hardest part: The Catch. Tonight might be the last time they can catch him, but there are rumours that Articuno will be back in the future as a legendary egg that takes 48 hours to hatch. Anyway, tonight, multiple sub-groups were formed to assist the guys that have not caught Articuno yet, and many members who already have a few Articuno, still got involved. A few members walked away feeling a sense of relief, however, a few, alas, did not achieve their catches, feeling very despondent. Again, this is where the community shone! Everyone tried their best to cheer up the guys that gave it their all, and for the most part, it helped. Pre-raids, I doubt we would care much if someone did not catch the Pokemon they really wanted, let alone spend money on raid passes to help them catch that Pokemon, so I would say these Legendaries have banded us together, and for some part, restored my hope in humanity.
Niantic Makes Money Off Of Our Misery
I wish I could say that the Legendaries have only had a Positive Influence, but that would be far from the truth! We are all spending a generous amount of time in the game and on our phones; Morning, Noon and Night; at School, Work and Elsewhere. Why? Because we are obsessed and consumed with catching Articuno and Lugia before they are gone! Niantic gives us 1x Free Raid Pass per day, but for some, that is not enough, we are spending our Pokecoins on Premium Raid Passes to have multiple attempts at catches. At the time of this article, Pokecoins are on special, costing R6.99 for 100, which gives you 1x Premium Raid Pass or you can spend 480 Pokecoins for a “Special Box” in the in-game Shop which gives you 6x Premium Raid Passes and 10x Pinap Berry’s.
I always promised myself that I would never spend any “Real World” Money on a game, even though it is Pokemon, but this week, I have spent R350 in iTunes Vouchers on Pokecoins so I could get Raid Passes and do multiple raids per day. Well done Niantic (Feel The Sarcasm?). I am not the only victim, as many other trainers have confirmed that they are also spending a lot more money on Pokemon Go! than they used to and many also bought coins for the first time this week, just like me. I can imagine this happened globally!
As for time on my phone and neglecting certain responsibilities, I have also fallen prey to this drastically this past week whilst trying to get Articuno (or a Better IV Articuno), and the game had me driving around too much to meet up at a specific time, at a specific location for a coordinated attack on a gym. This became too much for many players, and they inevitably turned to Spoofing to help get them to twice or even three times as many raids as what they could do in person. This is now referred to as “Air Support”, and raids now consist of a “Ground Team” which let’s the Air Support know when to engage in the Raid Battle.
Whether you like it or not, Spoofing is on the rise, and many hardcore legit players have gone against their beliefs this week to attain a legendary, and have done it through the aid of Spoofing Apps. I would just like to add that more often than not, Spoofers are relied upon to win a Raid, so being against Spoofing is no longer an option, it is real, it is here and it is going to stay. If you want a Legendary and do not have a group of 12+ friends that play Pokemon Go! with you at the exact same time, you are going to have to accept the assistance of Air Support.
I used to be very against Spoofers, but think about it this way… Niantic has “ruined” our daily routines with putting a 1 week time limit on each Faction Legendary. If I was suddenly struck with an ailment or if I was in hospital for surgery and could not get out of the house or hospital to go to a raid and then missed out on a legendary because of that, I would be seriously peeved! Would I turn to Spoofing? Perhaps. I would certainly try to ask my brother to go raid on my behalf using my account first, but is that not also then considered as Cheating or Spoofing? That is probably a whole post on it’s own, but I will leave that up to you to decide.
Getting back to neglecting our responsibilities, I asked the group today how the release of the legendaries has impacted their lives, and a few members responded with statements like, “Im raiding instead of going to gym”, “Im raiding instead of doing homework” or “Im putting things off to get to a raid”. I will admit, I was living on the edge this week and raided on Friday at the time I was supposed to collect my kids from school (don’t worry, I was not late to collect them), so again, I fell victim to the pressures of Articuno. I do not expect it to get any better before Zapdos is gone, infact, I think we should all prepare for an increase in stress levels and frustration.
[miptheme_quote author=”Vikash Sanchez Moodley” style=”text-center”]I am definitely neglecting responsibilities and swearing a lot more! It is difficult to go play while at work and it is annoying to raid with limited time on weekends. I have also found that there are still a lot of glitches and bugs in the game, which only adds to the frustration.[/miptheme_quote]
With all this said, everything should be taken in moderation. With the good, comes the bad. We have gained a community life, teaming up to achieve our goals (legendary catches) and making new friends along the way. We also seem to be learning how to squeeze in some time management to raid, while spending money on a mobile game. Love it or hate it, Pokemon Go! is controlling our lives at the moment, and Niantic is smiling all the way to the bank. If you got a legendary this week, congratulations! If you did not, I am sorry, but hopefully when trading becomes a reality, a group member or friend can trade you one! If you have not joined a WhatsApp Group yet, I suggest you do so. Below are the dates for Articuno, Moltress and Zapdos, as well as WhatsApp Group links.
Legendary Articuno, Moltres and Zapdos Dates for South Africa
- Articuno: Available from Sunday, 23 July 2017 to Monday, 31 July 2017
– Farm Ice & Flying for +6 Catch Bonus
- Moltres: Available from Tuesday, 1 August 2017 to Monday, 7 August 2017
– Farm Fire & Flying for +6 Catch Bonus
- Zapdos: Available from Tuesday, 8 August 2017 to Monday, 14 August 2017
– Farm Electric & Flying for +6 Catch Bonus
Join the Pokemon Go South Africa Facebook Page: Link
Known Pokemon Go WhatsApp Groups
- Alberton: https://chat.whatsapp.com/LCNFDv57v3E8Z2G5PFp0iW
- Pretoria: https://chat.whatsapp.com/9GORQIHG5T34YUAI3ZuN5i
- Paarl: https://chat.whatsapp.com/JCMetKmGrR20r10arkv1pK
- Johannesburg: https://chat.whatsapp.com/IVuGdm4hXup0iF86D5zOVc (Currently full as of 27/07/2017)
- Johannesburg 2.0: https://chat.whatsapp.com/9qwdiWNfmgj9CsuVnx8HXc
- Jhb South: https://chat.whatsapp.com/LCNFDv57v3E8Z2G5PFp0iW
- Durban / Queensburgh / Chatsworth: https://chat.whatsapp.com/BUy0ab4MVvd0xTNdU40kpO
- Cape Town (Northern Suburbs): https://chat.whatsapp.com/8xfQ9OH2MHyAQSMve3yUZa
- Nelspruit/White River: https://chat.whatsapp.com/DDSqItFgu6j1OFHu1DWkC5
- Westrand: https://chat.whatsapp.com/46ZBKRi21KrIOZbQjsEydp
- Randpark Ridge / Northriding: https://chat.whatsapp.com/JQyr2hXNVaKAj07fK2mhSy
- Midrand: https://chat.whatsapp.com/invite/0bdeFzUeFrc6m6R3Azkebt
- Sandton: https://chat.whatsapp.com/F9RVZsbJ0BOLBfTmBCRNCP
- Centurion: https://chat.whatsapp.com/6mCgfSZEUhhL4lIPL51T8b
- Vaal Triangle: https://chat.whatsapp.com/LrljSd4zOWfEOxqakzmZ6d
- Northern Suburbs / Brackenfell: https://chat.whatsapp.com/BPufzTATt95DYThEozdZZg
- Richard’s Bay / Empangeni: https://chat.whatsapp.com/El9SJmV83DjDAgwZndm7IT