16 Stages Of Playing Pokémon Go

It’s not just a game, it’s an emotional journey.

There’s something about the change in weather this time of year that seems to make us all go a little crazy for a new gimmicky trend. Remember a couple of years ago, when we were all dumping buckets of ice water on our heads?

Maybe it’s the mood change the new season evokes in all of us that helps these fads take hold. In any case, the Pokémon Go phenomenon is definitely this year’s ice bucket challenge, with masses of people heading outside to catch cartoon characters with their phones (and in some cases, causing stampedes and falling off of cliffs in the process).

Whether you’re new to the game, have yet to download it, or have already leveled up past all your friends, you’ll probably recognize a few of these emotional stages of playing the addictive new game…

1. Scorn

An app based on a cartoon from the 90s? Puh-leeze. I’m not a child. I have better things to do.

2. Curiosity

But everyone seems to be having so much fun, getting outside, laughing, connecting with each other. What’s the deal, exactly? Am I missing out?

3. Reluctance

Okay, I have to find out for myself. I’ll just download it so I can see what everyone’s so excited about. I’m not going to actually play it…

4. Understanding

Oh, okay… Yeah, this is kind of cool. I get it. And look, there’s a Pikachu – gotcha!

5. Excitement 

Now I’ve caught the first one, I really kind of have to keep going. This is actually pretty fun!

6. Embarrassment

Accidentally walking into someone while chasing a Weedle is the worst. I can only hope they’re playing too – but that look of irritation tells me I’m probably on my own.

7. Acceptance

You know what? Fuck that guy who gave me the stink eye for bumping into him. This game helps autistic kids. So there. Besides, it’s super fun. No shame in my game.

8. Obsession

Is it bad if I’m staying up late, waking up early, missing meals, and falling behind at work because I’m battling at the PokéGym…?

9. Denial

No, it’s fine. I can totally quit anytime I want. Seriously. I’m fine.

10. Frustration

Why does my phone battery drain so fast? And how can I already be at 90 per cent of my maximum data usage for the month? Aaaaarrrrgh.

11. Heartbreak

Why does my Golbat keep fainting? Why is his happiness level dropping? What did I do WROOOOONG?

12. Desire

I won’t spend actual money on this game. I will not. …But I really need some extra Pokéballs right this minute, and the fastest way to get them is to buy some Pokécoins. Hmmm… My resolve is weakening…

13. Bliss

I’m leveling up so fast now – nothing can stop me! I’m out in the world, hunting Pokémon with friends and strangers who might soon be friends. This must be the best feeling ever. I FREAKIN’ LOVE this game!

14. Shame

Oof. I’ve spent a whole week’s wine budget on in-app purchases, and just forked over more money for a top-of-the-line portable phone charger. Is this rock bottom?

15. Loneliness

My friends don’t even want to play with me anymore because they say I take the game too seriously and it’s not fun. What am I doing with my life?

16. Apathy

Oh for Pete’s sake. It’s just a game. It was fun for a while, but it doesn’t have any power over me. I mean, I can take it or leave it.

But wait – what’s this about someone hitting level 30? TF?!! I didn’t even know there was a level 30.

Hmmm… perhaps I’ll just have one more go at it… Totally not addicted though.

Images via giphy.com.

Comment: How obsessed are you with playing Pokémon Go?