Hey guys! Brief intro – oh boy! I would have written this last night, but I was in relax mode after writing all day.
So the GO to HOME integration finally dropped, after months of speculation and wondering if it was ever going to drop (before the announcement earlier on saying it will by the end of 2020).
First, we were told that there would be a cost to transfer Pokemon across, which sparked outrage. Then we were told that transfers were free, but there would be a cooldown period, which we could offset by paying coins. I mean, I was kinda okay with this, although on the fence because we didn’t have an idea as to how much this would cost, or how long the cooldown was.
On 10th November (or 11th for anyone with an advanced time difference) we finally got the drop. I found out via ZoëTwoDots’s live stream announcement saying she had gone live with this feature. Now honestly I was expecting it to be an Australian release first (for some reason), but then I found that I could access this feature. It’s pretty tucked out of the way in the settings, but I got there.
Upon using it, I was only able to transfer four shinies. So I transferred a Scizor, Blaziken, Poochyena and Spiritomb. That was all I could do. I had a bit of energy left, but not enough for a shiny. Granted, I was able to get just shy of 6 days left until the full charge, and you can offset that by transferring in increments, but it’s not the point.
The next day, I was able to transfer another shiny, but I opted out of that. However I have been debating throwing in my special shiny Absol (I got it from the first Absol raid I ever did, and I’d been asked to trade it over multiple times).
For the full recharge, you can either wait 7 days or pay 1,000 coins (coming in at just under £10). Considering the game amassed $1 billion in the first 10 months alone this year, it’s clear that it’s Niantic’s hard push to monetise the game. People have been suggesting that the business needs to grow, but it’s the game that needs to be heavily improved. As far as I’m aware, there are still issues with PvP, and there are still overworld sprite issues, as they’re still glitching out months after the bug was introduced.
And let’s not get started on its gatcha mechanics, without even disclosing the shiny and hatch odds.
How to Improve This
There are several ways that this can all be improved:
- Smaller cooldown time – I was expecting to wait a day or so to get a certain amount traded, but a week – yikes.
- An alternative to spending – Even in the middle of a pandemic, I’d rather go out on my daily walk to build up the charge than actually spending any more money into the game.
- Just let us transfer – Let’s Go allows you to transfer Kanto and Alolan variant Pokemon for free to its in-game GO Park. The only caveats are that you have to catch them again, and their stats will be changed. But the premise is there, and can be done!
I already addressed the issue with monetisation in Pokemon GO but Niantic’s processes don’t seem to be impacted in any way, shape or form by real world struggles. Many places, including the UK, have been through or are going through a second lockdown. Niantic had already taken away an amount of bonuses, had already royally screwed up Adventure Sync and are still expecting people to pay for two Community Day tickets this month alone, with Electabuzz and Magmar being at the forefront.
Over the course of the year, we’ve had many Egg-based events, of which require you to pay money to benefit the most from them. We’ve had several ticketed events, the standard GO Fest and Safari Zones aside. The Liverpool Safari Zone ticketing was marred by hidden VAT costs initially. There are also no daily free Remote Raid Passes, nor can we use our regular in-person ones for remote raids. I mean, I did actually quit Pokemon GO for a while, and the link that I just shared pretty much sums up everything, and barely anything has changed since then, if I’m being honest.
All in all, I can see why Niantic wants this system as is. The first is that it gives them more money, in a year that has seen them earn a lot of money. The second is that they clearly don’t want people to just dump their shinies and best Pokemon into Home and then quit.
What are your thoughts? Let me know!