Don't Be Too Incensed With Pokemon Go

On 6th August 2016, the much awaited worldwide event landed on the shores of Singapore. I am not talking about the stunning Rio Olympics in the Macarena Stadium. It was the official release of Pokemon Go in Singapore and 14 other countries.

07 Aug 2016

Incensed with Pokemon Go
On 6th August 2016, the much awaited worldwide event landed on the shores of Singapore. I am not talking about the stunning Rio Olympics in the Macarena Stadium. It was the official release of Pokemon Go in Singapore and 14 other countries. This is a month after it first launched in the US, Australia and New Zealand.

For those unaware of what this global phenomenon is like, Pokemon Go is a GPS based augmented reality game that integrates one’s mobile device capability to locate, capture, battle, and train virtual creatures, called Pokémons. It is reported to be one of the most used mobile apps, with more than 100 million downloads worldwide.

This game has led to many players or as Pokemon trainers they would like to be called, to go outdoors seeking to catch as many Pokemons they can or just to snare that rare Pokemon lurking around. This game has also led many these Pokemon trainers to hit the streets to look out for Pokemon Gyms where they can battle and train their Pokemons as well as look for Pokestops where these Pokestops dish out free game goodies and utilities. Funnily, I was told by my buddy that the church he attended on Sunday is a Pokemon Gym.

On hindsight, the Pokemon Go craze has seen reports of accidents, injuries and even crimes in countries where it has already been launched. There already has been a statement by Singapore Police Force to advise Pokémon GO players to enjoy the game safely.

Nonetheless, it should be noted that the most important function of this game is the “incense” function. Players are allowed to buy and place incenses as a lure to bait wild Pokemons in the vicinity. Naturally, establishments that require visitations are poised to benefit and bank on this phenomenon. These include tourist attractions, retail malls as well as restaurants. Already, Capitaland has already started its own snap-and-reward Instagram activity called #PokemonSTAR for their rewards programme members. Retail mall managers and even retailers can also place lures or incenses in hope that many or a rare Pokemon may appear to attract these Pokemon trainers.

It was also reported that the Singapore Zoo, Sentosa, Marina Bay Sands or Gardens by the Bay are all home to plenty of Pokestops and gyms and may expect crowds as both tourists and Pokemon Go fans.

Who knows, the Singapore Tourism Board may be in discussions with the app developer, Niantic to develop a Singapore specific Pokemon to boost the country’s tourism stats. After all, Singapore is a multi-racial country with many mythical stories and creatures; the Merlion which is an evolved hybrid of two animals, is the perfect Pokemon candidate.

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