I tried to play Pokémon for a few days to see what all the fuss was about.
In case you missed it, it’s an augmented reality game you play on your smartphone. You basically walk around and catch different kinds of monsters.
When you find a monster, the camera on your phone comes on and you can see what’s in front of the phone, and when you point the camera in the direction of the monster a little animated monster pops up.
The novelty of it wore off pretty fast for me.
First off, the Pokémon Go app didn’t work with my phone, so it was like walking around and playing a video game.
But, I figured I needed to play it to discover why everyone was going crazy over the game. I was wandering around throwing balls at little monsters and spinning the Pokéstop things.
I got some kind of egg and the game told me I had to walk 10K to hatch it.
While I was walking around, I talked to a few people and asked them how they liked the game.
One guy told me he had been sitting on the couch playing Halo since he graduated high school, and it was a good way for him to get exercise. But, he said he didn’t understand why his legs hurt all the time.
Another two people I ran into had stayed up until 5 a.m. trying to take over a gym. There was a mom with three kids, and I even saw a few people that looked to be older than 50 playing Pokémon.
I thought it would be mostly kids playing the game, but about half the people I saw playing were adults.
As I was wandering around, it became pretty clear the people weren’t paying any attention to the warning on the game’s load screen.
I’m surprised someone hasn’t been killed chasing around a Pokémon — or at least seriously injured.
Well, it turns out there are injuries associated with trying to catch Pokémon.
I came across an article in the Daily Mail UK where doctors had ranked the top five Pokémon-related injuries. The injuries were sunburn, skin damage on the face, blisters on people’s feet, sprains, fractures and broken bones and, finally, mental health problems from addiction to the game.
Needless to say, there are some interesting aspects to the game.
You actually have to get up and move around to finds the little monsters, so people are getting exercise by playing the game.
The way the game used augmented reality was also interesting.
Too bad it never worked with my phone’s camera.
Huck Treadwell’s column appears Tuesdays. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.