Pokémon roaming in Cambridge
CAMBRIDGE — Pokémon Go, a new augmented reality smartphone game, has taken the country by storm since its U.S. release Wednesday, July 6, and the game can be enjoyed throughout historic Cambridge.
As with other versions of the Pokémon franchise, the ultimate object of the game is to “catch ‘em all.” However, new to this version is the requirement that players must get up and walk to where the “pocket monsters” are, encouraging millions of users to walk their communities in the quest to be the very best.
The AR software in the game uses a player’s smartphone camera to interject the image of the Pokémon into the player’s immediate environment. It also allows players to snap a photo of the Pokémon before catching it.
GPS is used to pinpoint a player’s location and guide them to where the Pokémon are hiding. Players also see on their map locations called PokéStops, where they can go to collect items such as PokéBalls used to capture the monsters, and gyms where players pick one of three teams, battle one another to take control, and gain experience.
PokéStops and gyms are generally located at notable places such as historic buildings, landmarks, and art installations throughout the community, adding educational value to the hunt for Pokémon. To access the features of these locations, a player must be within a few yards of the stop.
Pokémon come in many different types, and they tend to enjoy hanging out in their natural habitats. For instance, water types like Psyduck, Magikarp, and Krabby can be found in abundance near the water at Long Wharf and Great Marsh Parks.
Grassy areas are good places to find grass and bug types such as Oddish and Caterpie. Occasionally, you might find a Pokémon in a surprising place, like a Squirtle in the heart of downtown Cambridge.
PokéStops in Cambridge include the Harriet Tubman Museum on Race Street, Dorchester Center for the Arts and the Richardson Maritime Museum on High Street and many other significant areas around town.
While this innovative gaming experience is encouraging people to spend more time being outside and active, police departments everywhere are reminding players to stay safe in their adventures. The game provides a warning to players to always be alert and aware of their surroundings, but it bears repeating. Explore with a buddy, especially if going out at night, watch out for traffic when walking near the road, and never play while driving, police have said.
“Just be aware of your surroundings no matter where you are,” said Cambridge police.
Krabby, a water-type Pokemon, was caught at Long Wharf Park. The photo was taken with the Pokemon Go app. The Choptank River Lighthouse also is a PokeStop.
This is an example of one of many PokeStops in downtown, the Harriet Tubman Museum on Race Street. PokeStops typically have historical and cultural significance.
Goldeen, a water-type, was caught at Great Marsh Park.
Psyduck, a water-type, was caught in the waters at Long Wharf Park.
This is one of two Magnemites caught at the same time at Great Marsh Park.