Opinion

Point:Pokemon GO; Give it a try

Story by Liz Ptaszynski, Staff Writer 

Photo courtesy of 

Admit it. You at least downloaded it for day or two.

You might say it’s lame now, but I bet when you evolved your first Pidgey, you were beyond stoked and proud for that matter. It’s an accomplishment.

Of course I am referring to Pokemon Go.

And it has become one of the most downloaded apps in the span of five months.

For those of you unfamiliar with the game (or claim to be), the concept is easy, you walk around town as a Pokemon trainer attempting to “catch ‘em all.” Along the way you can battle at gyms to build up the pokemon you own and you’re able to evolve them into stronger and better Pokemon.

Since the moment it came out, people have been addicted. However, there are some who believe that this has become a burden on society. Also, if you watch any news reports it seems that way. People have been playing while driving, or they’ve been walking around not paying attention and are getting harmed. And while I agree that those are terrible things, I also believe that the app itself is not to blame, just as if you were to drink and drive. It isn’t the alcohol’s choice to get behind the wheel and test your limits, it’s the individual who consumed it.

Overall the app provides a lot of benefit to humankind. In a society that condemns children for being overweight, shouldn’t we be more accepting of a game that allows them to go outside and get exercise and have fun?

There are also extreme psychological benefits for those who suffer from social anxieties and depression that have been linked with the game. Pokemon Go has served to be a behavioral activation. What this means is that if you have an opportunity to experience positive rewards from healthy behavior, you are more likely to feel better about your well being and will create a positive feedback loop where you are more likely to feel encouraged to live a more healthy life. If you haven’t really played the game before, it’s important to know that the user gets rewarded quite often. They get “medals” for walking 10 K, or for catching a certain amount of pokemon. These rewards encourage them to play more, and eventually could cause them to change unhealthy lifestyles such as going for walks after dinner instead of sitting in front of the television.

Pokemon Go has become a blessing in disguise to our society, and people should not be condemned for playing it because there are a few people who don’t know how to play it. It provides both physical and psychological benefits to people, and that should be recognized.

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