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Pokemon Go at De Anza College

September 29, 2016

Pokemon Go hype washed over De Anza College in the course of its sweep of the nation, resulting in the placement over 25 Pokéstops and a gym on campus.

According to Collective Evolution, the game has been downloaded over 75 million times since its release in early July. Pokémon Go allows users to catch Pokémon using GPS coordinates of real locations as well as capture gyms and Pokestops located on real landmarks.

La Voz’s staff has its share of experienced players, so we asked for their perspectives on the game, whether they plan to play this upcoming quarter and their advice to other players.

Chuckie Snyder, Arts editor, said he always had the game open on his phone for the first two months he played.

“I love how it gets people out of the house and how it’s connecting people to each other,” Snyder said. He said the game became very distracting to him. When the new Harry Potter book came out, Snyder said he realized that Pokemon Go was taking away from reading; he got more fulfillment and enjoyment in reading than video games.

He said the game is no longer fun for him and he does not play as much anymore.

“The best place to catch Pokemon nearby is [across the street] at Memorial Park. There’s a lot of Pokestops here [at De Anza College] so this is a good spot to reup on Pokeballs and potions,” Snyder said on advice to other players.

Editor-in-Chief Greg Schrader played the game four or five times and then deleted the app.

“It didn’t meet the hype in any sense, specifically [because of] the lack of things to do. The functionality of the game was kind of a glitchy mess,” Schrader said. Schrader criticized the removal of the tracking feature and the lack of a battle function.

Schrader said the game is not worth playing beyond the nostalgia factor.

Art Director Adrian Discipulo has never downloaded the game, as it never appealed to him.

Discipulo said, “I actually don’t have any games on my phone. If I’m on my phone it’s editing photos […] or interviewing people. My phone in itself becomes a very utilitarian tool.”

Discipulo recommends to players to keep doing what they’re doing but to stay in class and play only while walking in between classes.

Andrew Pouliot, News editor, initially didn’t want to play the game because he wasn’t into Pokemon. His girlfriend encouraged him to play with her and he eventually decided to try it out and found he enjoyed the game.

“I actually played on campus the other day and there’s a lot of Pokestops, but there are not a lot of Pokemon. It’s good for Pokeballs but there’s just a lot of Rattatas and Pidgeys [which] are lame,” Pouliot said.

He said that he’ll be playing whenever he’s not busy this quarter and recommended users to stay alert to their surroundings and not to play when driving.

Opinions editor Neil McClintick said the two major reasons he continues to play are because his girlfriend and close friends do and it’s a convenient thing to do during passive activities. For him it serves as an effective timesink.

McClintick said the game is negative in the sense that it adds another distraction in a generation that struggles eternally with instantaneous forms of stimulation like texting and Facebook.

“There’s never a time when you’re just idle, and [Pokemon Go has] really exacerbated that for people, including me,” McClintick said.

He will continue to play this upcoming quarter but a lot less than before, with the guidance of scanners and resources online that alerts users to rare Pokemon.

“Pokemon Go isn’t dead but it’s become very regionally exclusive. The lifeblood of the game has been tied to how much Pokemon there are in the area and how good they are,” McClintick said. “If you still want to play the game and have fun with it you should move [to another area] or drive to better places [to catch Pokémon].”

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