Not where I live

Comic-Con ended yesterday, and I was probably asleep for the most part, so while scrolling through my news feed this morning, I happen to come across Candela, Blanche, and Spark - the team leaders for Valor, Mystic (best team), and Instinct, respectively.

Clicked the article, read through it. Pokemon Centers are coming? Nice. The game is 10% of what Niantic want it to be? Woah. They know about the three-step glitch? FIX IT PLEASE.

Reading the last bullet point, I was initially excited to hear that the legendary Pokemon are, in fact, coming.

“It sounds like we can’t expect legendaries until after the game has been released on all regions, which makes sense.”

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Wait. ‘On all regions.’ Does that include Pakistan? Even if it doesn’t, Articuno WILL be coming here, right? Moltres? Zapdos? Mewtwo!? I thought to myself, ‘Didn’t Niantic mention Pokemon GO would be releasing across 200 different regions?’ That put me at ease. ‘Of course they’re coming.’ Then another thought crossed my mind. ‘What lengths do I have to go to?!’

If you don’t live in a third world country, allow me to brief you on a lot of the hassle I go through while playing Pokemon GO.

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Disclaimer: No, I do not live in a village tending to livestock. Islamabad is a beautiful city, but that’s probably because it’s our country’s capital. However, there are still a few problems here and there, more so in the smaller cities.

Where are the PokeStops!?

To the people living anywhere but here, this is presumably what the map of your surroundings looks like:

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Here’s mine:

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Even if I do manage to somehow find a Pokestop, they’re scattered across the entire city in very, very sparse numbers. I haven’t used up all my Pokeballs as yet, but while writing this, I’m currently left with a meager 27.

What do I do when I run out? You only get around 3-4 Pokeballs per Pokestop, and they’re NOWHERE. Most people go great distances to find rare Pokemon. Me? I do the same, but for Pokestops.

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So when you’re in a situation like me, you have to grit your teeth when you come across a Golbat or a Pidgeot, because they’re going to take a LOT out of your Pokeball stash. I lost 9 trying to catch my last Golbat!

What’s that you’re saying? Golbats aren’t rare? Allow me to introduce to you, my next problem.

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Where are the rare Pokemon!?

I’ve memorized the Pokedex all the way up to 491 Pokemon, so I’m covered till the fourth generation. I’ve left it at Shaymin, because Tepig and the others don’t intrigue me. (Sorry guys!)

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So when you hear that Pokemon GO consists entirely of first generation Pokemon, you lick your lips at the thought of a Poliwrath. Gengar! Dragonite! You really want those Pokemon, so you’ll go great lengths to find them. An hour later, you decide to call it a day. You caught a Primeape - not what you wanted, but you’ll take it home.

Envy.

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GUYS THIS IS LEGIT OKAY

Here? No, no, no. You go out to do the shopping, and on the way, you yelp for joy because holy smokes, you found a Growlithe. A Parasect. A Poliwag. Catching one of those is a good day in itself. In fact, I’m sure many of you might have lakes, piers, or rivers to catch your water type Pokemon? Magikarp or Seaking? We get those nasty little filthy streams, which are like 15 feet below where you’re standing, so imagine my surprise when I caught a Squirtle over a tiny stream, in my car, across the bridge.

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An even bigger problem is finding those darned Pokemon AGAIN. You know, your Growlithe needs 50 candy to evolve into Arcanine? Yeah, no, that’s never going to happen here. Or it will, but it’ll take an extremely long time. *Sigh*

While it is safer to walk around the city I live, I’m going to point towards a city where my friends find it pretty difficult to step foot outside the house, because threats.

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You don’t want to go out catching anything in the evening, or at night.

I’ve caught and missed out on my fair share of Eevees and Pinsirs, but only because I find it relatively unsafe to go into the shady alley a few streets down the block. Primarily because no one is around and I’m afraid I’ll get mugged.

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The only thing you can do it stare at the nearby Pokemon section, because its either the Gastly, or your belongings. I choose life, and trust me, Revives won’t help you here.

Of course I can get around if I’m using a car, even by walking, but there are a few cities down south where people would rather wait till daylight.

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Bless you, random trainer who used a lure!

Don’t get me wrong, there is still a flourishing Pokemon GO community here in Pakistan. Plenty of players take charge of gyms, and gather at Pokestops, in different cities too! The only problem is they’re all concentrated in the urban areas, so if you happen to be located in some remote area, there goes all your chances of ever coming into contact with Pokemon GO players.

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Now, for the people who use lures here, bless you. A friend of mine managed to capture a Blastoise using the lure alone, and I’ve met other friends from long ago who I never would’ve guessed were interested in Pokemon.

Now we’ve all formed a Whatsapp group and are going to go hunting sometime this week!

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In the end, its not so bad

I mean, apart from all the scary stares from random people, the hot, hot summers that go up to 35 degrees, the shitty 4G coverage in patches and the lack of any worthwhile Pokemon.

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Still, it is quite fun going to proper forest areas and cricket grounds to find a Meowth or have a Dratini tease you. Many people are actually really friendly, and maybe the more I go out, the less dangerous the place looks. However, its not threats that are the problem, its the other things - mainly not being able to find the Pokemon you want. Still, we’re going out this week, maybe my narrow-mindedness might still change.

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What about your experiences playing Pokemon GO? Do you live somewhere where its a bit of a hassle trying to play? Maybe the circumstances aren’t the best, maybe its too hot?


You’re reading the barelyfanatical blog. I’ve been extremely busy over the past month and a half, what with SAT exams and A levels. When I’m not busy doing those, I’m usually reporting for Gearnuke.com

A special thanks to Zarnyx, and the entire TAY community for helping me secure a job at Gearnuke! I’ll still be posting stuff here when I can.