A Minimalist/Zero Waste Perspective of Pokemon Go and Ingress

So I have only just found out about this Pokemon Go thing. And it was my mother of all people that told me about it. When she described it to me i thought “that just sounds like Ingress?”. I’ve you read one of my previous blog posts you’ll see that quite be accident I discovered and fell in love with the AR game Ingress around a month ago after looking for something to help motivate me exercise. Of course Pokemon Go has a lot in common with Ingress precisely because it is made by the same company and has used many of the Ingress features to build the Pokemon Go platform.

Since hearing about it i’ve now added Pokemon Go to my phone just to mix things up. Sometimes i’ll play ingress on my walks, sometimes Pokemon Go. And this has been particularly good right now while the entire city of Brisbane where i’m currently visiting has been ‘greened’ out by my own team which is a good thing for our team – but not so good for allowing me to really do things of interest in the game and level up.

It is interesting that something that i’ve been doing myself now for over month now- going out for walks with my phone, playing a virtual game has gone mainstream. Suddenly i’m seeing dozens of people out and about doing exactly the same thing. I’ve also seen online what a positive thing this is. That is why i wanted to write this post to celebrate what a wonderful thing i think this new trend is and how it really is extremely compatible with a zero waste and minimalist lifestyle.

It is obviously zero waste because it is entirely virtual. Most people already own a mobile phone and the game is free. You don’t even seem to need a more expensive, fancy phone as it does just fine on my $120 Huawei Y5 which is about the cheapest smart phone there is in Australia. In terms of minimalism, it doesn’t clutter people’s homes and emphases lots of aspects that are often provide really good value in people’s lives. Namely get out and getting healthy through exercise and social interaction with friends, family and strangers. While i am yet to physically meet another Ingress player i’ve had a few conversations with Pokemon Go players (all adults) i’ve just met on my walks, and this is actually really nice. There also are so many stories online of how the game has motivated them to exercise after never even going out for walks before and even how it has improved their mental health. There really is very little to criticise about these things and the benefits they’ve provided for people’s lives. Other stories i’ve hear are of parents going out with their younger kids to catch pokemon. Some of them might be playing pokemon go themselves or there are a number of family’s where the adults play ingress and the kids pokemon and because the portals/pokestops are in the same location it can work really well together like that.

So i just wanted to take this time to reflect on how nice that something so positive for people can be provided so freely and widely. While it might not be for everyone, it certainly does appeal to many people in their teens, 20s and 30s that might otherwise be focused on far less positive activities like shopping as entertainment, drinking or even just sedentary gaming on a couch.

May you catch them all x

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4 thoughts on “A Minimalist/Zero Waste Perspective of Pokemon Go and Ingress

  1. I agree, is very positive that at least they create an app game to motivate you to go out and move. Unfortunately to me, the drawback is that you are going out and moving but only looking at the screen of your phone trying to search/kill. So, where is the interest in the surroundings, listening and watching the Bulldogs, he parks, the birds, the people, etc. I have quite mixed feelings about it because of that 🤔

    But thank you very much for sharing your opinion and views, you are the first one I read about it from a minimalist/zero waste pint of view 👍

    Cheers! 💚

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      1. Yes i agree it definitely doesn’t encourage mindfulness. The craze can’t go on forever though so maybe people who have built up a certain level of fitness from the game that might not have otherwise will continue going for walks long after getting bored with the game 🙂 Theoretically it is meant to help people discover their city and key cultural landmarks though – but i don’t think most people are using it that way.

        Liked by 1 person

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