Changing The Face Of Gaming

Changing The Face Of Gaming

"Pokemon GO" merges video games and reality.

When Nintendo first released its "Pokemon" games for its handheld Game Boy system in February of 1996, they probably had no idea just how popular the franchise would become. After spreading to the UK, North America, Australia, South America, and beyond, Pokemon quickly became an international pop icon. Even back in 2013, before the release of their incredibly popular "X" and "Y" titles or similarly hype-driven remakes "Alpha Sapphire" and "Omega Ruby," the Pokemon Company announced that it had sold over 172 million copies of its games worldwide. With each new title of its main line, Pokemon has endeavored to move its players toward active social interaction. For those who have never had the joy of playing the Pokemon games, a typical summary would be that they are about traveling different geographical regions collecting and befriending a huge assortment of wild creatures. In the Pokemon world, everything seems to revolve around trainers and their relationship with their Pokemon friends. The strongest trainers take lead positions in society, acting as both a sort of government and as community mentors for the cities and towns in which they reside. By creating combat-oriented games that remain free of blood and relatively scarce of death, Pokemon explores themes of power, friendship, and work ethic while still being family friendly.

Unlike in previous generations, the fanbase for games like Pokemon and other forms of animated entertainment never seemed to outgrow the product. Instead of dismissing the games as childlike, the Pokemon fanbase remained loyal, creating a unique opportunity for the company to work with a market of increasingly older fans. While attending the midnight release of "Omega Ruby" and "Alpha Sapphire," I was pleased to see a long line of 20 somethings dominating the area, some even bringing their kids along for the event.

Recently the Pokemon Company made an announcement that created an internet uproar among its fans. For the first time ever, Pokemon was coming to the physical world in "Pokemon GO." How, you ask? By utilized GPS and smart phone technology couple with a sort of “Fit Bit”-style watch, "Pokemon GO" places different Pokemon at actual geographical locations. Players must travel to these locations to battle or catch wild Pokemon. As always, players can also play the game amongst each other as they trade and battle cooperatively or competitively. The game’s trailer teased at major events in which large numbers of players will have to join forces to fight powerful legendary Pokemon at a specific location.

What I find most intriguing about "Pokemon GO," however, has little to do with the Pokemon world. Think back to when a groundbreaking system was announced for the first time. Maybe you can remember as far back as "Pong," or the first standing arcade. Maybe you remember when the Xbox 360 consolidated all of your entertainment needs into a single box. Maybe you played some of the first MMOs. No matter your age or gaming interests, you were probably present when the cultural methods of entertainment were dramatically shifted. This is what fascinates me. Though "Pokemon GO" is not the first “augmented reality” game, it is already one of the most popular. Social media like Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit exploded with rumors and questions about how the new game will operate. In my opinion, the game’s popularity has already changed the way we think about entertainment. Now that we view an idea like "GO" as an option, we have created an opening for game developers to accommodate that desire. We are the forerunners and aggravators of whatever comes of this. That’s why I will not only be playing "Pokemon GO," but purchasing whatever associated products that are released with it.

Being a gamer does not mean you dislike being outside. A common (though dwindling) stereotype portrayed video game enthusiasts as lazy, unhygienic, and disconnected from reality. The overwhelmingly positive interest in "GO" seems to derail such a narrow view. If you really think about it, gamers are probably more active than their movie-buff or bookworm counterparts. A huge chunk of the gaming industry encourages players to use their minds actively in order to achieve a desired goal. Freeform and open world games such as "Skyrim" and "Minecraft" allow the player to create their own gaming experience rather than being forced to play a specific style. As a video game lover as well as a physically active person who enjoys being outside, I am ecstatic about the possibility of taking my family or a group of friends on an outdoor gaming adventure. By playing this game, writing this article, and talking about it in general, I am joining millions of others in laying the foundation for the new wave of video game hybrid experiences.

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25 Responses To Your Friend Who Doesn't Text Back

Omg thanks for responding so quickly...oh, wait.

We all have that friend. That friend we love to death, but if we are sure of anything in this world, it’s that they will not respond to your text because they suck at texting. That moment when you see “Read 1:04 p.m.” and you’re like “and???? Helloooooooo!”

These are 25 responses for that dear friend.

1. Lol thanks for tagging me in that FB post, now text me tf back.

2. OMG, wait you met Chris Hemsworth and he’s professing his love to you??!! No? Okay, then you can def text me back.

3. Hey I’m coming to help you since you obviously broke your thumbs and can’t respond.

4. Lolol thanks for responding. I’ll just continue the conversation with myself. That’s cool.

5. Good chat.

6. Yeah I wouldn’t know how to respond either, pizza topping selection is a thought-provoking process. Take your time. Meditate on it.

7. The classic: ^^^^^^^^^

8. I hope you’re writing me the 8th Harry Potter novel.

9. That was a yes or no question. This isn’t difficult. You wouldn’t do well with ‘Sophie’s Choice.’

10. Omg, did you pass out from the excitement of getting a text from me? Totally understandable. Text me when you regain consciousness, love.

11. Omg what a witty and clever response. Nothing. So philosophical.

12. The only excuse I’ll accept is if you’re eating guac and don’t want to get it on your phone. Because avocados are life.

13. I love it when you do that adorable thing when you don’t text me back for hours. So cute.

14. Okay I’ll answer for you. Yes, you’re going out tonight. Glad we had this convo.

15. In the time it has taken you to respond, dinosaurs could have retaken the earth.


17. The dramatic but also very valid response: That’s what happens when you don’t respond for 30 minutes. People die.

18. I apologize for asking if you were coming to watch Bachelor, clearly the decision has caused you serious reflection on your priorities. I’m sorry to have caused you this existential crisis.

19. Sorry I annoyed you with my friendship. But like plz respond…

20. Your response time is longer than Ross and Rachel’s entire relationship. 10 seasons. You couldn’t text me back for 10 seasons?!!

21. Wait. You’re responding too fast. I can’t keep up. Hang on. Don’t respond so quickly. Jeez.

22. A subtle but perfectly placed gif. What will you go with? The classic eye roll perhaps or maybe a “you suck.”

23. Did you fall off a cliff? Wait, you don’t exercise. Pause your Netflix and respond b*tch.

24. Omg I WON THE LOTTERY. *responds* Lol now you respond…

25. And my personal favorite and go to, Did you text me and then decide to THROW YOUR PHONE ACROSS THE OCEAN?! Lol swim fast, I need an answer.

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3 Reasons I Did Not Like Halo As A Kid

It was a meh game


Halo: Combat Evolved was a game that revolutionized the world of video games. Even to this day, the Halo franchise is a powerful force in the world of video games (not necessarily for good reasons, looking at you REC packs). Many of my friends grew up loving this franchise and idolizing Master Chief. I was not one of those people, here's why. Before I get into this I just want to say I don't hate Halo its just as a kid I preferred other games and this is why.

1. No aiming down sights

In shooters, I try to be as accurate as possible when I shoot. I lean towards things like single shot rifles and snipers instead of shotguns or high rate of fire rifles. It was just how I liked to shoot. The shooter I grew up playing was Call of Duty, particularly Call of Duty 2: The Big Red One. So when I went over to my friend's house and we played Halo, something was always off. In the early days of Halo, not all guns could aim down their sights.

When I found this out it baffled me. Why would you not want to aim down the sights? Shotguns and rocket launchers made sense but rifles and SMGs just seemed wrong without sights. It bothered me since I was so used to aiming down the sights to be as accurate as I could be.

2. Master Chief is a boring character

I've always liked stories. I particularly like the stories in video games. The possibilities are endless in the world of video games. Which is why I'm saddened that Master Chief is such a boring character. He is a yes man. All he ever does is follow orders, at least until Halo 5. I get that he is a badass that has saved the galaxy from the flood and worked with the Arbiter and whatnot. He can do all of that but he can't act human for 10 seconds.

3. The weapons were boring

It feels like when they were making the game, the human weapons were just going down a checklist. Full auto rifle? Check. Burst Rifle? Check. Sniper Rifle? Check. etc etc. The alien weapons were the more interesting ones to me.

That was the case until you look at them and most of them are the human weapons but they fire plasma which works functionally identically. Only the sword, needler, and gravity hammer were interesting, and that's because two of those were melee weapons.

So all in all, the guns were uninteresting, the main character was just a dude that follows orders, and I couldn't be as accurate as I wanted to. All of that made for an experience that felt more like something that should've been in the bargain bin instead of the thing my friends wouldn't shut up about. All of this isn't to say Halo is bad, I have lost many hours to playing this with my friends, Halo was just not as interesting to me as other games when I was a kid

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