It’s been a while since I last posted about my Pokémon Go adventures. Yes, I’m still playing, but it’s not because I’m having a blast with the game. My doctor has recommended that I walk, just to get some exercise. To keep the walk interesting, I spend it playing Pokémon Go.

I was still a level 22 trainer as of my last update, but I’m happy to share that I’m no longer level 22, I’m all the way up to level 24! Woo hoo! Unfortunately, level 24 is taking me FOREVER to get through. The level requires players gather 150,000 total experience points and I’m right at about 100,000. For some reason level 23 took no time at all to get past, but level 24 is dragging.

Niantic is making some solid progress with the updates they’re rolling out. The buddy system allowed me to evolve a Magikarp to a Gyarados, and now I’m working on evolving a Pikachu. Another fun update is the bonus for players who have earned numerous medals that make it easier to catch frequently seen Pokémon. I’m raking in tons of Pidgeys and Rattatas. Not the sexiest Pokémon to catch, but I figure each one gets me closer to level 25.

What’s my goal with this game? Who knows??? I just use it to keep my hands busy while I do my prescribed walking at lunch. Outside of the busywork, the game has zero staying power with me. There’s nothing to the game, nothing that keeps it interesting or evolving. I collect pokéballs and random Pokémon to gain experience, but I have no real goal to accomplish. As I level up it just reminds me more and more how little there is to the game. I’m going through levels without any interest in what The Boy and most of his friends are super interested in, battling. Sure, I’ve done one or two gym battles, but they seem really tedious and, frankly, lame. What’s the point of gym battles? So I secure a gym for 10 minutes? So what? Someone else comes along and takes it over, I battle back, they revive and take me on again, etc., etc., etc. It’s an endless cycle which holds no interest for me.

What is interesting to me is the possibility that one day I’ll be able to battle other trainers or even trade Pokémon with them. Niantic has teased those as upcoming features, but has attached no target date to the roll out. I really think that being able to battle or trade with my fellow trainers will significantly increase my interest in the game. I know The Boy is eager for the day he can trade for my Gyarados that has nearly 3,000 combat points. Will I give it to him? Hmmm… interesting question! When I walk at lunch I see the same general group of people walking around, playing Pokémon and just grinding out experience. We nod or wave, but there’s no interaction. Adding trading and battling immediately changes that. With those features we might actually talk to each other and negotiate trades or give each other shit as we battle. Actual interaction with other humans? Say it ain’t so!

Another feature update I’m hoping for is the expansion to the next generation of Pokémon. Hopefully this will happen before I lose complete interest in the game. The Boy is always telling me about the amazing Pokémon available in Generation 2 or 3. Let’s give them a whirl. Give me something new to capture. I’m getting really tired of Pidgeys and Rattatas.

Right now Pokémon  Go is just something to keep me busy while I walk, but it wouldn’t take much for me to switch to some other game or app that catches my fancy. C’mon app developers, find me game that doesn’t require much concentration, effort, and isn’t rote repetition. Do that and I’ll be your ideal user.

Are you still playing Pokémon Go? If so, what’s the appeal for you? Why are you compelled to continue playing?