I recently downloaded Pokemon Go again, upon hearing of the new update introducing trading… Much like everyone, I too went through a period where I had stopped playing… So after installing, I asked myself ‘is it fun again’?

Well… Yes and no. I downloaded Go originally before the ‘official’ release date here (Through some bootleg site), and I FUCKING loved it. So much so that I was playing it on holiday, in the car, on days out, ignoring everyone… But unfortunately, like every mobile game, it got boring as hell. I played it for a long time before this happened, and to be fair I got to level 26, but unfortunately at the time, catching the same Pokemon over and over and over again were just boring. As I had only played Gen 1 games originally, the newer generations of Pokemon didn’t excite me… Also the additions of Gyms didn’t turn my mind as I didn’t want to stand in one spot swiping at my phone like an absolute madman… So eventually I realised I wasn’t playing it any more, and deleted the app.

So here we are, almost 2 years after it’s initial release, and 1 year after I deleted the app – I’ve since re-downloaded it. I don’t know whether it’s the fact I’ve had a break, or that there’s a few new features, but I’m really enjoying it again (To the point where my better half felt ignored as I was catching Pokemon), and it’s definitely worth giving another go. I’ve fully remembered, however, that it destroys your data and kills your battery, but I can’t help but feel that it’s so worth it for the fun!!

A few things have happened since I last played which are making me want to play it more – Firstly, most importantly, I finally got my mother-trucking Blastoise! Even though he’s weak as fuck, this is a major achievement on my end.

Niantic have fully realised from the early days of this game that repetition is no bueno; the main reason why I (And many many others) dropped it was because you were catching the same Pokemon over and over; for the Exeter area it was predominantly Pidgey, Rattata, Drowzee, etc. Boredom central. Now there’s a vastly different range of Pokemon available to catch, and I’m registering new Pokemon almost every day; perhaps this well will dry, but there’s definitely a lot more available. The vast majority of this variation is down to the events; since starting again a couple weeks ago there have been 3 big events that have changed the available Pokemon in the local area – Firstly was Adventure Week was focused at rock Pokemon, helping me evolve my Geodude, Aron, etc. Then there was Water Week, helping me catch and evolve a massive range such as Totodile, Squirtle, Magikarp and many more, AND during this there was a special 3 hour event to catch Larvitar. These events really do make the playing field constantly fun and change who you can catch, towards the end of each event you do tend to see the same ones over and over but as it’s changing so often it’s not that bad, and if they continue to do this it won’t get boring. What’s also great is because I started on 2 events when they finish I’ll still need to catch the new Pokemon I couldn’t get before.

There are also tasks that have been added by Professor Oak such as ‘Have 10 GREAT throws’ and ‘Catch 10 Pokemon’, completing these tasks give you more special items and give you more of a goal to work towards every day – There are 2 types of task; ‘Special’ which are slightly harder challenges that reward you with usual shop items and big XP and ‘Field’, which are easier but have less rewards… However if you complete a field task on 7 separate days you get a chance at catching a legendary bird. Again upping the ante in who you can catch and making better Pokemon more available. Also, there are more style options for your character that you can spend coins on, need to work out the best way to get free coins! You can also create your own parties ready for Gym battles, which isn’t a huge change but makes it feel a bit more old school.

The break has definitely helped as I’m just enjoying the basics of spinning Pokestops and the catching mechanics, but I feel like I WANT to build up my Pokedex again and train up some powerful Pokemon. I’m still not entirely sold on the Gyms but it may be something I can get into if the Gyms aren’t in massively public places – Just my preference.

It’s still a great free to play game and one of the most interesting AR/map games I’ve played. Maybe this time I’ll stick around.