Saturday, August 24, 2019

Pokémon Go: The millennials way to get outside

A few summers ago, the game Pokémon Go became a really popular game across the country.

I remember wherever I would go, whether it was at my summer job or at the airport people were glued to their phones playing the game. In fact I remember even writing a story about how the Republican National Convention was a great place to play Pokémon Go and how that would add even more stress to the people running the convention.

Fast forward to over the weekend and I realized that the game is still extremely popular.

It all started when I was out shopping with my girlfriend in Mankato, and I got a call from my old coworker from my previous paper who I became good friends with.

He lives in the same area as my girlfriend and we decided to make plans to go to lunch.

After finishing up our shopping, we meet my friend and  his girlfriend at their town home, and we began talking about Pokémon Go. I hadn’t played the game in a couple of years, but apparently the game is extremely popular still.

After eating a late lunch, and socializing for a bit at the restaurant we decided to go out and find Pokémon.

My girlfriend the only native of the area, suggested that we go to Sibley Park a well known park in Mankato. She explained that there are a lot of really rare Pokémon there and also a great opportunity to collect different things to be successful in the game.

We all agreed to go there and instantly found out that she was right as there was plenty of Pokémon to be found in the park.

As we were walking through the park, we began to realize that a lot of people were also playing the game whether they were walking around like us, or driving around in their air conditioned car, looking for different Pokémon.

I couldn’t believe how many people who were all playing the game, in fact I don’t think I saw anyone who wasn't playing the game.

All of us in the group being millennials, we were poking fun of the fact that the only way groups of young people go outside is to play Pokemon Go.

But after thinking about it for a while, I thought to myself, “why is it such a big deal that a game like Pokemon Go, gets younger people out of the house, and outside exercising.

The reality is that, for many years, different organizations, including schools and political groups have been working hard to come up with ways to motivate people to exercise each day. While it may not be the traditional way I think that people going outside to play the game is actually a really good thing.

While I don’t think that the creators of Pokemon Go created the game intentionally to get young people outside, I do think they may be on to something powerful.

For as long as I can remember, I along with people I grew up have been told that video games and electronics is the death of young people spending time outside.

But maybe people have thinking about electronics in the wrong.

Pokemon Go has show us that electronics can in fact encourage people to get outside and exercise, and I think that other game inventors in the future may try to take that approach when it comes to designing games.

It will be definitely interesting to see what the new trending game is and how it will or won’t impact people exercising like Pokemon Go has.

 

See full story in this week’s print edition or subscribe online. Please subscribe here or current subscribers can login here.

Steele County Times & DCI

Steele County Times
507-583-4431
411 E. Main St.
P.O. Box 247
Blooming Prairie, MN 55917

Dodge County Independent
507-634-7503
121 West Main St.
Kasson, MN 55944

Dodge County Printing
507-634-2661
121 West Main St.
Kasson, MN 55944

 

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