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Thursday, July 14, 2016

Japan Still Can't Play Pokémon Go - But That's A Good Thing

Pokémon Go is NOT yet available for gamers to play in Japan (and other countries).

It is available to play in the U.S., however - a fact that has many Japanese gamers upset.

“It would be best if Japan was first because Pokémon is a Japanese franchise,” says Kajiwara Kenji (surname first), who is ready to play the game with his two sons via a Wall Street Journal article.

Yes, we can all see why Japan would be ticked off… it’s like if Japan made a Godzilla movie and decided to show it everywhere but Japan… forcing the Japanese to wait weeks or more… it would be frustrating and a slap in the face.

But… in this case, the Pokémon Go game was NOT developed by a Japanese company.

Pokémon Go is NOT a Japanese game. Pokémon Go is a U.S. game.

While Pokémon Co. is based in Tokyo with a 32% stake owned by Nintendo, Pokémon Go is being produced by Niantic, Inc.

I should also point out that Pokémon Co. does own a stake in the San Francisco-based Niantic. however.

Pokémon Go, in case you either have been living under a rock this past week or simply don’t give a pikachu’s rat butt about Pokémon or video games (so why are you reading this?), is a very impressive looking video game utilizing augmented reality that mixes the real outside world with digital images the player can see on their smart phone.

So why the U.S. first?

Japan actually possesses the largest smartphone game market on the planet, taking in some US$9 billion in 2015…

But take heart Japan.

There are a few reasons why Pokémon Go is initially someone else’s problem, rather than Japan where everyone around the world will roll their collective eyes and smirk: “That effing Japan is so weird.”

They do, you know.

But that doesn’t mean the rest of the world is correct. We know that Japan is wacky when it wants to be, and to be honest, I think many people wish they could be more like the Japanese. Sometimes.

Not all the time. That would be insane. ;)

Along with the fact that having a Japan and U.S. release at the same time would probably bring down the video game server, I am sure many of you have been hearing about the games inherent faults?

You can read my initial write up on Pokémon Go HERE or simply watch the video trailer - which is very cool.

How cool is it? It almost made me want to buy a cell phone - and a Smart one at that. Almost.

Problems that are currently affecting Pokémon Go players and those around them are: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly.

The Good

Javier Soch (26) and Seth Ortega (24) are U.S. Marine Corp. veterans (now out), who on July 12 traveled to downtown Fullerton, California to play Pokémon Go in the real world.

After the phone Soch was using froze, he looked up and around into the real world and saw a ‘strange’ man acting strangely and decided to trust his instincts and follow.

Seeing him touch a young boy across the chest (his mother didn’t notice), Soch and Ortega continued to follow… eventually see the man grab another boy by the leg and run his and upwards.

They grabbed the man without incident and held him for police.

“If I hadn’t looked over to my left and seen this guy who looks out of place, I could have missed it,” Soch said. “The best thing I can say: Remind yourself that you are not in the phone playing the game. Look around and be more aware.”

“The game, when it loads up on the screen, says to be cautious of your surroundings. Strongly follow that advice,” says Soch.

Great advice, sir.

The Bad
In the U.S., Pokémon Go players have followed the leads on the screen to find Pokémon in some strange places including a hospital operating room and at the Holocaust Memorial at the Arlington National Cemetery. SEE HERE.

Really people? Are you all so stupid that you could simply march into a hospital and possibly kills someone with your germs? Or so ignorant that you show such little respect for the Holocaust Memorial visitors and their grief?

Apparently people have their heads stuck so far up their app that they are easy targets for muggers.

I would be car accidents could ensue. People falling down hills or worse.

I’m sure there are more negatives.

The Ugly
The fact that the game creators over at Niantic thought it was okay to program the game to include capturable Pokémon in places like the Holocaust Memorial or in a hospital (anywhere in a hospital).

What were you thinking?

Can objectionable Pokémon sites be deleted from the game? I would imagine you can do that easily… so hopefully it is being done.

My point for Japan is - let everyone else find all the screwy things in the game... wait a week or two and get the improved version.

Andrew (Never played a Pokémon video game) Joseph
PS: I did like the television show…

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