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By Ashley Arey
Staff Writer 

Living the dream as a Pokemon Trainer


July 19, 2016  | View PDF

Pokemon has been a fascination among children, teenagers and even some adults since it was invented in 1995.

The franchise has quickly grown since, with video games, playing cards, an animated TV show, animated movies, stuffed animals and most recently the mobile app, Pokemon Go.

The game originally started with 151 Pokemon and since then five more generations of Pokemon have been released, adding 570 more of the monsters. And in November, even more Pokemon will be added when the seventh generation is released.

I have been a fan of Pokemon since around the age of 5. I collected cards and watched the TV show, but I was always a bigger fan of the video games. I often played Pokemon Blue Version on my friends Gameboy Color and Pokemon Ruby was the first game I ever owned.

Since Pokemon Ruby, I have bought a game with every generation of Pokemon that has been released.

When you play the video games you start as a trainer, deciding whether you want to be a girl or a boy. You are given a Pokemon and asked to journey through a specific region and catch one of every Pokemon. You follow a storyline, challenging the eight gyms for that particular region and eventually becoming the strongest trainer. The games are able to link up to other games and friends can battle each other and trade Pokemon.

Naturally, one would think that I would be excited when Pokemon Go was announced, but I was unsure.

The advertisements showed people walking around, using the app to find Pokemon. The app utilizes Google maps and those with it are able to travel around and find Pokemon.

When starting, players receive a starter Pokemon: Charmander, Squirtle or Bulbasaur. Players level up by catching Pokemon and once a player reaches level 5 they join a team. The team choices are Valor, Mystic and Instinct and each of them have values and perks that help a trainer decide which to pick.

Certain points of interest such as churches, landmarks and interesting sites are marked as Pokestops or gyms.

Pokestops allow the player to spin a wheel, which gives them more items to help catch Pokemon.

A gym is a location where trainers can battle other trainers. Teams claim gyms and help defend them from the other teams. If another team defeats them, that team takes over the gym.

I wasn’t all that excited about the game simply because it only features the first generation of Pokemon. I mean, sure there are so many amazing Pokemon in generation one, but the other generations feature a lot of wonderful Pokemon as well.

A couple of months ago certain people were allowed to beta test the program so they could find out any bugs the game might have.

After seeing videos of the game from beta testers I was convinced, I really wanted to play Pokemon Go.

I ended up downloading the game, which is free to play the day it came out. I was excited to go out and find some of my favorite Pokemon.

The game was confusing at first, as no one knew much about it. I had to learn from trial and error. But it has gotten me off the couch and outside.

I’m very excited to see that this app. is getting kids outside and allowing them to meet new people.

Of course the app, has its faults, it still has a lot of glitches and it has caused some danger in bigger cities.

However, the game is still being updated, glitches will be fixed and we will have to wise up and start making sure we’re safe.

Secretly, I’ve always kind of wished Pokemon were real and now I finally feel like a real trainer. I’m hoping that more Pokemon will be added and that I will eventually be able to have my favorite Pokemon, Flygon.

To my fellow Pokemon trainers I urge you to stay safe and be prepared, because with a dedicated trainer like myself on Team Valor, we will control all the gyms in Susanville.


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