The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Pokemon Invasion

Pokemon+Invasion

By Katelyn Needham/ campus editor

Pokestops can be found across all campuses. Here's where to find them.Katelyn Needham and Suzann Clay/The Collegian
Pokestops can be found across all campuses. Here’s where to find them.
Katelyn Needham and Suzann Clay/The Collegian

The world of pocket monsters is invading TCC campuses through the phones of students who catch and train them.

Pikachu is sitting next to a student during a physics class.

Charmander is wandering around the SE student commons.

Jigglypuff dances around the chessboard on NE.

Several campuses are taking the social aspect and buzz generated by Pokemon Go to get students more active on campus.

“A lot of our students are getting out and about now,” South student activities senior office assistant Amanda Sims said. “Students are interacting with each other and not just walking from their class to their car but walking around campus and running into services they didn’t even know we offered.”

South will use the app to get students interested during an event 2-4 p.m. Oct. 10. Each of the teams from the app — Mystic, Valor and Instinct — will have boxes at the Pokestop tables to see which team brings the most food donations.

“The main goal with the event is to get students involved with gaming and life on campus,” Sims said. “The Cat Council will be collecting money for the campus cats and supplies for a local shelter.”

NE students sit near the chessboard, a designated gem in Pokemon Go, and work to fight the Pokemon guarding it. The app has over 100 million downloads.Photos by Bogdan Sierra Miranda/The Collegian
NE students sit near the chessboard, a designated gem in Pokemon Go, and work to fight the Pokemon guarding it. The app has over 100 million downloads.
Photos by Bogdan Sierra Miranda/The Collegian

Lures, items that draw Pokemon to a location, will be placed on all the Pokestops on the campus. The app was created by Niantic and uses augmented reality to bring the monsters to life in the world around the trainer, or user.

NW library specialist Jennifer Smith and part-time library specialist John Humphrey set up a Pokemon-related display and word search for students to enjoy. They also created an email, librarypokemon@yahoo.com, where students can submit their Pokemon screenshots for the display.

The goal is to prove that libraries aren’t entirely formal places. The pair want to attract students into the library and make them feel more comfortable, Humphrey said.

SE library services assistant director Tracey Minzenmayer created the Pokemon Golympics to try and inspire students to spend more time in the library as well.

“Our library is a Pokestop, which is wonderful because a lot of students are playing it,” she said. “It gives them something to do while they wait for advising appointments and registration. We wanted to combine that with the Olympics that were going on, and so we’ve come up with the idea that we have our Pokemon Golympics.”

Students earned points for their teams two ways: submitting a review on a graphic novel from the library’s collection or catching a Pokemon in the library.

Launched over the summer, Pokemon Go soared to popularity and encouraged trainers, or users, to find landmarks, artwork and churches to catch or train Pokemon.
Launched over the summer, Pokemon Go soared to popularity and encouraged trainers, or users, to find landmarks, artwork and churches to catch or train Pokemon.

Minzenmayer also held a faculty class about using Pokemon Go in education. Augmented reality is when technology, in this case a cellphone, overlays an image onto the already existing environment.

The augmented reality behind Pokemon Go can be used to create educational opportunities just as the Pokemon itself can be used. The monsters can be used to teach ecological and environmental lessons since they spawn in places that coordinate with their type, she said.

The Pokemon brand started in Japan in 1996 when creator Satoshi Tajiri had a dream to get young people out of the house and into the world exploring like he did as a child. The Pokemon monsters themselves were inspired by different bug species.

The app has over 100 million downloads and generates $10 million in revenue a day. The app brings Tajiri’s idea of getting people outside closer to realization. During the game, players must walk around and look for the monsters to catch.

“Every time we’d go out to hunt together, we’d always strike up conversations with other players,” SE student Madison Grisham said. “When I was on vacation, I met this really cool guy from Romania, and we became friends because he helped me catch my first wheedle.”

Some of the fan base, like NE student Fernando Calderon, developed their love for the game early on when it was still on Gameboy.

“I’ve played Pokemon Go since the very first minute it came out,” he said. “But I’ve been playing Pokemon since I was born, basically. I started with Pokemon Red on the Gameboy original.”

Calderon plays on campus and has also met new people as a result of playing the game.

“If you’re on the same team, then you are immediate friends,” he said. “When I was playing in Grapevine one time, I told someone wearing a Team Mystic shirt that I liked it. He then played with us for three hours.”

Donate to The Collegian

Your donation will support the student journalists of Tarrant County College. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Collegian