Unless you’re living under a rock, you know what Pokemon Go is. It’s an interactive, reality augmenting game that came out on the 6th of July 2016. And it has taken the world by a storm!
Within just 5 days after its original release the game has seen a record breaking 7.5 million downloads and $1.6M daily revenue. Considering the fact that these numbers are coming just from the US alone, quite impressive.
I have always been a fan of Pokemon. Obviously, not as much as I used to be, but I still have my admirations towards the franchise.
I decided to invest some time in the game and actually play it for a couple of days. Right off the bat I can say that the augmented reality that Nintendo have created in the form of a mobile game is exceptionally addictive. So much so that it can be dangerous for the individual playing it as there were quite a few recorded incidents where people were hit by a car due to their increased concentration in the game.
Along with it’s obvious negative elements, such as the one mentioned above and how a lot of bad people and companies can abuse the game, it comes with a lot of pros as well.
One of the most notable ones is that it really elevates your general daily physical activity. This is due to the fact that in order to collect all of the various Pokemons that are scattered in your city, you would actually have to go outside and travel to various destinations.
There are a total of 250 Pokemons and they will continue to expand the quantity with every Pokemon Go Update that will follow later in the future. Once you reach level 5 you can start battling and capturing Pokemon Gyms – this is basically the reason why the game is so addictive!
Capturing a gym means that you need to fight the defending Pokemon that is placed by one of the rival teams and if victorious your team is granted “ownership” of that particular gym – an additional pokemon, one of yours, can be placed in order to defend the newly captured point. In a sense, Pokemon Go is a global PVP arena. Each gym and Pokestops are located at a different place, which, again, increases your level of physical activity.
However, the level of addiction that is associated with the game should not be associated with anything bad, actually the sheer fact that the game is so addictive has made millions upon millions of people to leave their homes and travel long destinations and, just, play the game and have fun with other people sharing the same level of fun.
Furthermore, after watching a YouTube video by Casey Neistat appropriately named “Pokemon Mania” I noticed how the majority of the people who were “interviewed” in the video were with somebody else. Barely were there any people who were walking alone and playing the game. In other words, the game does not just increase our level of activity, but it also improves our degree of social interaction.
One of the dudes in the video even claimed that “It really helps you meet a lot of people”, which is good as we humans are and always will be interactive and social creators that depend on social interaction and bonds.
I decided to test out the game itself by pairing the game with LifeSum that basically allowed me to track my physical activity throughout the day and compare it with previous days.
I also used the integrated app on my iPhone called “Health” to track my alterations as well.
As you can see on the image on the right there is a noticeable fluctuation of the steps that I have made for the day. This is obviously because I did not spend every single day playing the game as I have other things on my agenda. However, whenever I had an opportunity to play the game, I did.
On average, I would play the game for about 2-3. That is noting in comparison with what I’ve heard – there are apparently people spending approximately 5-12 hours a day playing the game!
I wrote down my level of activity on my little note pad that I have integrated in my phone so that I can get better results when entering all of the data in LifeSum.
Instead of calculating every active day (game active), I decided to just take a look at my most active one – the 7th of July. There I have the most steps made since starting to play the game and I decided that it would be nice to see how much my physical activity has elevated during that day. And the results were quite impressive:
- Slow walk for 45 minutes ~ 154 Calories
- Uphill walk (4% incline) for 20 minutes ~ 200 calories
- Walking up stairs for 2 minutes ~ 30 calories
- Slow Walk for 30 minutes ~ 130 calories
- Walking down stairs for 1 minute ~ 10 calories
- Medium walk for 35 minutes ~ 200 calories
- Slow walk for 15 minutes ~ 70 calories
- Standing time in between activity was roughly 45 minutes ~ 90 calories
The total amount of calories that I burned that day was roughly 890 calories! That’s quite impressive if you ask me.
The best part about it is that due to the fact that you are cognitively focusing your attention on playing the game, you don’t really feel time passing by and as a result your senses of boredom or fatigue are not triggered, for as long as your attention is occupied by something else, of course.
Of course, the amount of calories that I managed to progressively burn throughout those three hours and a half will probably not be the same as yours. In fact, the app itself is probably not providing me with the exact numbers. But that’s not the point! The point is so that you have a pretty good idea how the game can seriously impact your daily physical activity and legitimately assist you and help you improve your weight loss results.
With or without being a fan of the Pokemon franchise the game is exceptionally fun to play and you will find yourself playing it for hours and hours. The best part is that instead of locking you down to your chair and in front your computer or TV, Pokemon Go actually pushes you towards social interaction and improved physical activity, which I personally believe is an element that will revolutionize the gaming industry.
I would strongly recommend trying out the game for yourselves, but with caution.