Even Pokémon Go Isn’t Immune to the Coronavirus

Even Pokémon Go Isn’t Immune to the Coronavirus

In these trying times, it’s becoming more and more difficult to get outside.

News about COVID-19 and the ensuing pandemic bombards us at every turn. Companies are taking new measures to defer the potential spread as best they can. So, what happens to a game that is built around players getting outside?

Pokémon Go developers, Niantic, has taken a rather generous and considerate approach to it all. Speaking to Polygon, a Niantic representative said:

“[We are] prioritising updates to Pokémon Go features and experiences that can be enjoyed in individual settings”.

What that means is, Niantic is making it (slightly) easier to capture Pokémon whilst staying (relatively) close to home. There will be an increase in the habitats (spawn locations) of Pokémon. Which should help ensure you get a bit more of a chance to see locally spawning Pokémon.

Various Mechanics Have Been Altered Significantly

Furthermore, Incense packs, which help to increase different Pokémon’s spawn rates, are going on sale. To the tune of a whopping 99% discount! And Incubators will also see a (temporary) improvement in implementation. Niantic promised that Eggs will now hatch twice as fast.

And if that wasn’t enough, PokéStops are now dropping Gifts with a much higher frequency. The planned Abra Community Day (which would have seen Abra spawn in at a much higher rate than usual) and various real-world events have all been postponed. And the Special Research adventure that will see Legendary Pokémon Genesect finally debut has been tweaked so that tasks can be completed by individuals.

All of these changes are with immediate effect and will continue until further notice.

Niantic added:

“While we’ve made these updates based on the current global health situation, we also encourage players to make decisions on where to go and what to do that are in the best interest of their health and the health of their communities”.

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