Pokemon Go: A Vegas shootout, trolling the White House, and 50M Google Play downloads

Bah, it was just a bird.

The Pokemon Go news never ends. Here’s the best of it from the last 24 hours.

  • A shootout at the Pokemon Go corral took place on Monday in Vegas when two people tried to rob a group of Pokemon Go players at gunpoint… and were instead surprised to find one of the players had a gun of his own thanks to his concealed carry permit. One thief and one player were shot and hospitalized with “non-life threatening” injuries. Meanwhile, up in Canada, a woman shot at Pokemon Go players with a pellet gun up on a rooftop. No one was injured, but she was arrested.
  • Someone “karped” — that is, trolled — the Pokegym in the White House with a Magikarp named… The Donald. According to Kotaku, it lasted all of two minutes. Apparently you can access that gym from outside the gate, so now the crowd of tourists out there play Pokemon instead of gawking.
  • Congrats to Niantic are in order: Pokemon Go has reached 50 million downloads through Google Play — in 20 days.
  • Game research firm PlayerXP apparently paid to sponsor an article on GamesIndustry.biz exploring its metrics on Pokemon Go. This is a weird thing for us to link to, but it’s one of the very few pieces out there discussing the game in anything like a negative light, in this case by balancing review scores, reported technical issues, and related searches to arrive at a very poor grade when it comes to player satisfaction with the game. (Obsession is another story. No, obsession is all the other stories.)

  • Gamasutra has a long-form piece out on the game’s user interface. “Pokémon GO’s UX and UI are the subject of just about every single conversation I’ve had about the game,” writes Chris Furniss. “I’m not saying it’s poorly designed, but it does raise some eyebrows. […] Only Pokémon could get away with this kind of thing right now. The brand is huge enough to keep people invested even if the interface is confusing.”
  • Finally, a use for your smartwatch! The PokeDetector app isn’t entirely within the game’s TOS, but if you take the chance on it, it’ll alert you when there’s a Pokemon nearby so you don’t have to bury your nose in your phone with the screen on constantly.
  • A Canadian news agency commissioned a poll and determined that 30% of Pokemon Go players surveyed believe that the game is “taking over their lives” and are “skipping their day-to-day activities to catch Pokemon.” The poll also found men are playing more and longer and that “a majority of Pokémon Go players are aged 18 to 34, followed by those aged 13 to 17.”
  • If you don’t have a Vaporeon yet, you aren’t doing the meta right, or so sayeth Kotaku. He’s not the most powerful critter, but he’s one of the better ones you have any chance of getting, and he’s so good that he’s probably going to be nerfed hard.
  • Lifehacker has a guide to designing your Pokemon Go-oriented running plan. Running — you know, it’s that thing you do so you can eat ice cream later without guilt. It’s probably more healthy than wandering haplessly into traffic, anyway.
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