The “Spiritual” Reason People Love Pokemon Go

What is it about that mysterious enticement of the virtual realms that beckons us to the screen? The immersion into games, into fantasy worlds or futuristic realities is something many people long for.

The feeling of enchantment, like the magical atmospheres of elven worlds or intriguing futuristic cities all hold a special place in many of our hearts.

Many games try to emulate a virtual reality that immerses our consciousness in the on-screen quests, but when does the emergence of the 2D and 3D really come into play? Some games are starting to shift from the 2D reality into our physical reality with games like Pokémon Go.

shutterstock_160559990

It is the emergence of the digital and the physical, the impossibilities of the virtual with the experience and realness of physicality.

There is a very fundamental reason why thousands of people are going crazy for the game Pokémon Go, and it’s much more than brainless gamers running around cities.

People crave the experience of something captivating, something new; and adding a bit of magic to it doesn’t hurt. Combining location-based, real time games with quest-based systems, objectives and rewards, means many people are quick to play.

More games are shifting from simply the screen, to merging with real life. Games like World of Warcraft had the fantasy and multiplayer aspects down.

When this game first came out, it was incredibly popular and captivated a very large audience. It was engaging, and made the players feel like it was worth investing time into.

The worlds are colorful, the quests were rewarding – and most importantly – the point of the game was to interact with each other. In the good ol’ days, you needed to manually find people to go to dungeons with you – it required a level of human interaction. Now, companies see the value of taking it to the next step.

shutterstock_452401399

Games like Ingress combine the 2D and the 3D in an interesting way. Ingress is an augmented-reality MMO location based game. It was developed by Niantic, who just happen to be the same company who produced the Pokemon Go game!

Ingress is a science fiction game with an open narrative and never ending plot line. It’s played by choosing a one of two teams and capturing “portals” to gain points for your side. Similar to Pokemon Go, you need to physically move to the portals to capture them.

Anything from a road sign to a monument can be a portal, and the more you capture, the more your team gains control of the area.

You collect points, get gear and put shields on your portals to protect them. This game operates best with a group of friends, so you can walk together and take down portals with multiple people to attack. One of the core purposes of this game was to get out with friends, meet people and explore together.

Now, we have Pokemon Go. Whether or not you’re a die hard fan or are completely tired of hearing about it – the overall concept is amazing.shutterstock_234157531

It’s combining our love for fantasy, magic and other worlds with our own reality. It gives us a sense of purpose to go out walking and capture classic pokemon, even when it’s just a game.

This is the power of a reward based system. People will cross busy highways, bust into holocaust museums and do seemingly anything to capture a pixelated creature.

This is powerful – it shows us the determination of humans when they value something.

So what if that something wasn’t a pokemon or some sort of virtual treasure, but an actual thing to do? Like a real life world of warcraft that sends you on physical missions, to then get physical rewards?! Yeah, we’re workin’ on it…