Pokémon GO's release was a cultural phenomenon. For days, it was impossible to walk down the sidewalk or go to the park and not see several trainers-in-training huddled around a lured PokéStop. Yelling "there's a Lapras over here!" became our generation's new "crying fire in a crowded theater" as a sure stampede starter.
Unfortunately for many, ourselves included, the game didn't hold interest for very long. That's not to say the game is a lost cause, though. Niantic has made several updates to the game this past month, adding Daily Quests as well as re-implementing the "tracking" feature that was so bugged at launch. We have high hopes for a planned large patch hitting early this December, so here are some changes we'd like to see that might just make us put on our snap-back and go outside again.
Arguably the most requested feature since the game's release, the ability to trade Pokémon with our friends is something nearly everyone wants. Niantic's obviously had quite a difficult time adding this feature, considering it was portrayed in the popular announcement trailer over a year ago. There are some obvious concerns with the potential exploitative nature of power-users charging money for trades, but implementing a proximity requirement to trade would do away with most concerns there.
2. Team Progress Maps
Initially, there was a lot of pride involved with being a member of a Pokémon GO team. It was fun to capture gyms for the glory of your team, and working with strangers who happened to be on the same team as you was one of the game's simplest pleasures. However, now capturing gyms is only useful as a means to an end to train Pokémon and gain XP. The lack of an indication of how your team is performing outside of your immediately area means travelling to capture new gyms is much less exciting than it could be.
3. PvP Skirmishes
Controlling gyms for the glory of your team is all well and good, but sometimes you need to settle a score with friends. Much like trading, there are certainly concerns with abuse of the system, but I would be content with the the PvP battles being simple "skirmishes" that don't generate rewards or cause lasting damage to Pokémon. Niantic has been on record as saying a PvP battling system is "on the roadmap," so it's hopefully coming at some point.
A big gameplay cycle of the game involves catching many of the same Pokémon for the sake of hoarding candies. Unfortunately, catching a Pidgey simply isn't as exciting the 357th time around. Patching in the potential of encountering "shinies", Pokémon with very rare colorations, would add a bit of spice to the game's core grind.
5. Revamped Battle System
Most Pokémon fans aren't content with the lack of depth currently available with combat in the game. Tapping furiously and saving up to use one special attack severely limits strategies in battle, and it takes one of the most interesting parts of Pokémon and dilutes it down entirely too much. Sadly, Niantic have made no indication that they plan to revamp the very simple battle system currently in place.
To ask PoGO questions and read about the latest game updates, visit the Pokémon GO site on GamePress.
Pairing a love of DOTA 2 with traditional sports statistics, Bryan previously worked as a statsman for internationally renowned gaming tournaments. He then joined the Beyond the Summit crew to help design and develop several features for the game, such as Teamfight Recap. Now, he lives in Alabama with his wife and works as a freelance production assistant and writer.