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Everything I Ever Needed to Know About Pokemon Go I Learned From Playing Ingress

July 12, 2016

So, Pokemon Go has come out.  And it’s popular.  Like, super popular.  A lot of people are running around trying to Catch ‘Em All, and some of y’all are going to catch some serious injury in the process.  As a former Ingress player (the game that Pokemon Go is based on), allow me to pass on some of the important things I learned while playing.

Pack For The Journey

If you’re not used to long walks in the park, you’ll need to plan ahead.  Wear a hat, sunglasses, and comfortable shoes.  Bring water, a couple of snacks, and SUNSCREEN.  Seriously.  If you haven’t spent a whole lot of time in the sun, lather up.  Especially if you decline to wear a hat and are one of those people who shave their head.  Scalp sunburn sucks.  If you don’t like water, there are a variety of water flavorings you can pick up which are both portable and tasty.  Some are even caffeinated for your convenience.  Headphones will help you stay in touch with the game without bothering those around you.  And consider investing in a portable power pack or solar charger.  If you’re going to be out and about, you might as well maximize your play time.

Do Not Drive and Play

If you decide you need to get around a little faster than walking will allow, biking, skating, and skate boarding are all awesome ways to speed up your travels.  Whatever you do, DO NOT play while driving.  Playing in a car requires a two person team.  One to drive, and one to navigate/poke the phone.  Yes, this does mean that occasionally the navigator might miss a score because they were trying to poke two phones at once.  Trade off.  And for fuck’s sake, don’t stop the car in the middle of the road to snag a drop.  Pull off to the side.  Park.  Play.  Move on.

Do Not Play in Traffic

There is NOTHING worth running into traffic for.  I don’t care how rare the drop is, it’s not worth it.  The range of your toon is more than far enough to stand off to the side and pick up whatever it is.

DO NOT TRESPASS

Stay out of private property.  Be mindful of curfews.  Don’t climb over walls, don’t sneak into buildings, don’t go anywhere that you’ll have to have a conversation that starts with “Well, you see officer…”  Yes, most police departments in the country are fully aware of the insane game everyone is currently playing.  But “I was just trying to catch Pikachu” is not going to fly as a defense.

Situational Awareness.  Get You Some.

Are you a lone adult male hanging around a playground full of small children?  Are you in a cemetery while a funeral is going on?  Are you some place where you should be observing respectfully instead of playing with your damn phone?  Stop.  Think.  Don’t be an asshole.

Play Nice

No matter what, remember that it’s just a game.  A little friendly competition is all well and good, but don’t mistake a hit in the virtual world as a blow in the real world.  The other players are people, too.  Treat them with the respect that they deserve.  Even if they did choose the wrong team.

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