Pokémon Go is reverting its COVID-related features

Pokémon Go is reverting its COVID-related features

This story about getting back outside, boiled down, in 1:41 minutes.

What's the fuss?

As a response to COVID-19 safety measures, Pokémon Go was forced to adapt in a way that would allow their players to catch Pokémon in their homes instead of going outside. With society gradually coming back to normal, so is the app.

The situation

In the summer of 2016, masses of people young and old spent every waking moment outdoors swiping up on their phones in order to catch virtual critters. 

  • Pokémon Go truly caught the world by storm, but when the pandemic hit the subsequent quarantine restrictions made the social game unplayable in its current state.
  • The game was forced to adapt to these conditions by allowing players to catch 'em all from home instead of having to actually roam the real world.

As society slowly returns to normal, so will the game

  • The game will roll out bonuses for players who decide to play outside again over the next several months such as through faster player progression (i.e. leveling) and providing a variety of in-game gifts. 
  • In turn, the game will gradually remove some of the COVID-19 related features put in place and roll out these measures in phases starting in the U.S. and New Zealand to ensure safety.

Boiling it down

Pre-Internet, games were like films, being static and finalized upon release. 

  • Nowadays, video games are always connected to the Internet, to many gamers' dismay, meaning that developers can roll updates and patches remotely to their games whenever they like.
  • On one hand, this method ensures that gamers are always caught up with the latest content the developers have to offer, but on the other hand it forces gamers to adopt updates they may not desire.

Pokémon Go is a special game, combining the use of augmented reality (AR) and social features for a truly unique experience. 

  • The reversion of the aforementioned COVID-19 features goes to show how far we've come since the start of the pandemic, thus it won't be a surprise to see the app reach comparable levels of popularity it achieved in summer 2016 as people clamor for time in the sun.

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