For the past several weeks millions of people have become hooked on Niantic’s mobile Pokemon Go game. The goal of the game is simple: Catch them all, but actually carrying out that task is not as simple. So far only a very elite number of players have been able to do it. But the question is, once you’ve collected them all, what next?
If you’re Brooklyn-based tech worker, Nick Johnson you lose a bunch of weight, you have an amazing feeling of accomplishment and you get a corporate sponsor (Marriott Rewards) willing to pay for your trip around the world to catch the Pokemon that can only be found in Europe, Japan and Australia.
“I feel great,” Johnson told USA Today. “I was getting a lot of rest and exercise and meeting new people. I’m a lot healthier — I think I lost about 8-10 pounds.”
Using GPS and augmented reality, the game developed by Niantic Labs invites players to catch the colorful Pokemon monsters best known from Nintendo games and trading cards of the 1990s. In the game, the monsters appear on real-life sidewalks and park benches when a player has the app open.
Since it’s launch in early July, hardcore players are now focused on finding the rarest of Pokémon, some may or may not even be available in the United States.
Mr. Mime, Farfetch’d and Kangaskhan are reportedly only available in the wild in Europe, Asia and Australiasia, respectively. However, there is a legend that these Pokemon can be hatched from rare eggs in North America.
“I’ve talked to dozens and dozens of people who have hatched 100’s of eggs and no one can hatch or catch them (in North America) as far as I know,” Johnson said.
Another Pokemon Go master to ‘catch them all’ is Reddit user ftb_hodor. In order to finish his collection, ftb_hodor caught 4,269 Pokemon. He also hatched 303 eggs and walked more than 95 over the course of his two-week journey. His final catch was Omanyte, which he evolved into Omastar.