How I Lost Faith In Pokémon GO

I love playing Pokémon GO. At least, I used to until I started to feel like it was unfair… I wasn’t rewarded for my continued support of the game and the longer I played, the more it became apparent. The more apparent it became, the more I got bored and the more I lost faith.

Over a year and a half ago, while I was working at my previous job, I wrote a piece about why I love playing the game. Oh, how times have changed…

As of posting this, I’ve not touched my account for months. The app is still on my phone, sending notifications of in-game events and the like that I have uninterested in. I haven’t brought myself to delete the app altogether. Despite not playing it anymore, I’m still somewhat attached to it.

I used to play Pokémon GO every single day. I used to make damn well sure I kept up my Spin and Catch Streaks, took my car down the road before midnight struck just to spin/catch so I didn’t lose my streaks. I used to love to get out and hatch my eggs, always hoping that I’ve finally gotten something good.

But I never did.

The more I played, the less good it did for me…and the more frustrated I became.

I’ve only ever gotten one Shiny Pokémon outside of Community Days, and all the Shinies I’ve ever gotten during those all turned out with the worst possible appraisal except for the one and only Cyndaquil I managed to get during it’s Community Day, before I couldn’t even open the app anymore.

But then I see my other friends getting Shiny Duskulls and Delibirds, Shiny Magikarps and Drowsees…

My egg hatches haven’t turned out well either. And don’t get me started on EX Raid Passes…

But why am I so frustrated? Its just a game!

Well, it frustrates me because I’ve paid. I’ve used actual money on this game and I’ve gotten bugger all in return. But I have friends who rarely play, barely pay and their Shiny catch rate is much higher than mine. Their egg hatches were better than mine. Then rumour started circulating that that’s Niantic’s way of trying to lure you back into the game, that the more you play, the less chances you actually get to get those collectables or rare Pokémon.

I didn’t believe it at first, but now…I do.

Most of all, I’m disappointed. I love my video games (heck I started this blog because I love gaming) and for the longest time, Pokémon GO was the only thing I played for months on end because I didn’t have time to play anything else. GO was easily accessible: I had my phone with me all the time and no matter where I went I could play it. And despite it being in perpetual Beta, I loved being able to relive my childhood by catching these creatures “in the real world”.

I loved that they added AR+ as a feature and not too long before I quit, I became Best Friends with one of my actual, real life best friends. We loved playing together when we’re out, sometimes even prolonging our lunch outings just a little bit longer because we’re waiting for a Legendary Raid to start.

Now, I feel bad that I just don’t feel like talking about it anymore when she’s excited about a new addition to her Pokédex or when she’s upset that her husband got a Shiny when she didn’t. I’d just respond with laughter or emojis and nothing else. Of course, we talk about other things too but for the last two years it was the one thing we both loved doing and talked about it every day.

But I can’t bring myself to play it anymore. For months I made excuses about why I still play it and how it was still fun for me to play but now I’ve run out of excuses.

This has started to sound like a breakup post, and in a sense I guess it is… I’ve played this game since it first came out, and a lot of time, effort and love was put into it during that time. From catching my first Squirtle (Squirtle Squad ftw) to finally catching my favourite Pokémon, Mewtwo (not when it was in EX Raids), from finally completing my Kanto ‘dex after hatching a Tauros from a 7KM, to running across a busy road to get into a Raid Lobby in time with my best friend.

I’ve had a lot of good times playing this game, but I think it’s time for me to officially let go.

Maybe one day I’ll get back into it, once it’s gotten a bit more of its shit together. I highly doubt it since even now that the Unova-dex is released, I still have zero interest in playing but until then… I’ve got my Switch for easy gaming on-the-go.

Maybe I’ll get into FIFA?

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I'm a freelance photographer and writer. I'm using this blog to give myself a platform for the creative freedom in games and tech writing without the fear of analytics.

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