Pokemon Go: We may have a problem
Usually I am not a fan of doom-and-gloom; as evidenced, sometimes I am defending Niantic and other times I am writing (what I feel) to be impartial criticism. Hopefully I can articulate this accordingly.
Right now there is a huge issue with inventory management. Speed restrictions make it nearly impossible to spin Pokestops on the move, the majority of Pokestops drop 3 items, and Pokemon spawning near Pokestops require you to spend as you gain. To explain all of this, allow me the chance to explain my story. Below are pictures of my route: It consists of 13-15 Pokestops that are relatively close to one another (the pictures are zoomed-out).
This is my stocking route. On an anecdotal level, I have observed most Pokestops issuing a mere 3 items. In the most conservative estimate, 14 of 21 Pokestops typically garner 3 items and another four Pokestops garnered 4 items. That means, quite literally, 18 of 21 Pokestops garner 4 or less items (this includes the Pokestop bonus of 10 collections).
In July and August, Pokemon did not spawn here; or rather, when they did it was in very small numbers. Because Pokemon spawn in clusters near Pokestops now, and because items are in a small abundance, it is very difficult to stock up unless I ignore catching Pokemon.
Using the Pokemon Go Plus for three hours, I was barely profitable. I shouldn’t say “barely” but I was slowly profitable.(Remember, with the Pokemon Go Plus you only have one chance to capture a Pokemon; if your Pokemon Go Plus fails to capture the Pokemon then it runs away.) If I had to manually catch these Pokemon, I would not be profitable. Some of them would take 3-5 balls or maybe even more.
I have a feeling I am going to repeat much of what I just stated, but I wrote about this on my Facebook:
“I have a friendly view of Niantic. I defended them against third parties and their right to defend their servers, approved their marketing sponsor ships to lower marketplace costs, and commended them for reallocating resources to defend API integrity.
Similarly, I have been harsh on them in respective areas. I asked for more public transparency regarding the tracking system (because they said they would and I believe 3 weeks later they released a response) and even scolded them for the North American release despite early warning signs in New Zealand that their targeted market was much higher than expected (meaning they had somewhat of an idea that the server launch would be a disaster).
But their current formula has fundamental problems. The Pokemon Go Plus can NOT be used in excess speeds of over 18-20 mph (meaning my Plus works on in areas I am traveling less than 15mph). With Pokemon spawning near Pokestops, it now means when you collect items you are encountering Pokemon; you’re spending as you’re gaining, and in conjunction with small inventory drops, it makes inventory management much more difficult.
Their current formula of limiting speeds and spawning Pokemon near Pokestops have serious issues. If I realistically threw Pokeballs until I captured during my route, I would either run out of Pokeballs, expend higher-tier balls, or I would need to ignore Pokemon. What I am suggesting is inventory management should not be so difficult with all of these Pokestops and I feel bad for the players with hardly any.
For some of us, we can manage due to the methods I described. For areas that do not have these circuits of x amount of Pokestops to ensure constant load…to professionally say this (because this is technically not our Pokemon-Go account and I can be more relaxed here)…you’re f***** more than Paris Hilton’s acting career.”
Niantic has boasted their in-game store is one of the most generous, but it is only a matter of time until people connect these dots and assert Niantic is doing this to push more Pokeball purchases. Invalid or valid, it will be another controversy and there are absolutely repercussions with the current-system.