Using your phone's Global Positioning System functionality and camera, players will be able to catch Pokemon in real-world locations. As The Pokemon Company explains on its website, the mobile game forces users to "Explore cities and towns around where you live and even around the globe to capture as many Pokemon as you can".
- Walk to a "PokeStop" icon pictured on the map and tap on it to reveal photos of the real-world location you are standing in front of. I only had to play the game for a day or two to see dozens of people putting themselves at risk while playing.
App user stats bear out the sense that Pokemon Go is wildly popular already.
In other words, users sometimes get so caught up in playing the semi-virtual reality game that they might not notice they're about to walk into a telephone pole, onto private property or into a busy intersection.
"I downloaded it because everyone that I know has liked Pokemon since before fifth grade", said California teenager Owen Fairchild, who is now in college.
Pokemon Go will nearly certainly take over the world like Skynet once it releases worldwide in the coming days. For a somewhat complete directory of Poke Stops, head on over to the website for Ingress, the game Pokemon Go was inspired by.
"We're seeing scores, if not hundreds, of people coming down to the mall with the app playing 'Pokemon Go, '" said Mike Litterst, a spokesman for the National Park Service.
The department also warned that robbers were preying on players drawn to rich troves of Pokemon monsters in parking lots or other places where victims might be vulnerable. Gavin and his mom just moved to Great Falls from Arkansas and said the game has helped them get acquainted with their new home.
"Early mornings and late evenings are the best; it's like fishing", said Paris Simonson, local Pokemon trainer.
AR games have been around for ages; this is nothing new. But there have been some problems, ranging from a girl whose search for Pokemon led to the discovery of a dead body to muggers using Pokemon Go to lure their targets. It is free to play, but users can buy an in-game currency known as PokeCoins to trade for helpful items.