Can one make living playing Pokémon GO?

Can one make living playing Pokémon GO?

Can one make a living out of playing Pokémon GO?

25

JULY, 2016

Pokémon GO has undoubtedly reached a level of success most mobile apps only dream of, with data showing that it’s become the most successful mobile game in US history. And as with any other thing that has the potential to get people hooked, there are some that take their obsessions a little too far.

A 24 year old bartender from New Zealand has recently quit his job to become a full time Pokemon hunter. He plans to take a two-month long, country-wide tour hunting virtual monsters through the financial support of his friends and family. He’s become somewhat of a mini celebrity, with transport companies even offering to help him hunt for rare pokemon in remote areas and people all over the world sending him messages of support through Facebook.

It’s the kind of story that would make you wonder if you should be glad that the modern world is finally creating more job opportunities catered to those with unconventional skills or worried about what seems to be a sign of a declining rate of sanity in young people.

But besides the absurdity of it all, it does beg the question; can you really make a living off of playing Pokemon Go?

Well, there are easy ways to make a little money out of it here and there, but turning it into a full time job would require you to put in a lot more effort and be more skilled than the average player.

Sell accounts

The best way to make money playing Pokemon is to offer your services to other players. Take advantage of how popular the game has become. Such an engrossing game would, without a doubt, strengthen the competitive spirit in most people and you’d be surprised just how much people would be willing to pay for the bragging rights they obtain once they’ve managed to surpass the level all their friends are at. A quick search for higher level Pokemon Go accounts on ebay will show you just how desperate some players can get, with some accounts attracting bids even up to thousands of pounds.

Based on craigslist and ebay listings, most accounts above level 20 are priced around at least $100-200.

Let’s say you’re able to get one account to level 20 each week, and sell it for RM250, you’ll be able to make RM1000 a month. It’s definitely possible, provided you have a good strategy and know the right moves to make.

Become a PokéStop driver

When taking breaks from playing the game, you could make the most of your free time by becoming a PokéStop driver. Playing the game as often as you do, you should have a good idea of where to go for popular PokéStops and gyms.

Malaysian weather is not kind to pedestrians and so a service shuttling gamers around would do pretty well.

Make sure you have a decent vehicle and charge an amount that would ensure a fair profit and you should be good to go. If you’re also in the business of selling Pokemon Go accounts, being a PokeStop driver would benefit you as well.

Become an egg hatcher

Eggs are special items in the game that require the player to walk a certain distance in order for them to hatch into Pokemons. The current eggs available need walks that are either 2km, 5km or 10km long.

Like the PokeStop driver, your success from this gig relies a lot on the laziness of the general public and the fact that no one wants to walk for 10km in the scorching heat because let’s be honest, most Malaysians have never in even thought about running a 10K, let alone walk it.

You could charge about RM5 per kilometer and, to maximise profits, carry multiple phones with you at once. Even if you spent just one day a week walking 10km and only had five customers, you could make RM1000 a month.

Set up concession stands at PokéStops

A lot of PokéStops are conveniently placed near restaurants or cafes, with news that some places might even soon partner with Pokémon GO to become sponsored locations. However, quite a few PokéStops have been placed at pretty odd locations that are far from anywhere you could get snacks or drinks.

If you want to go all out and bake cookies and cupcakes everyday, it’s very likely that you would do rather well, especially if you made themed products, like a Pikachu-shaped cookie or a cake that looks like a pokéball. However, even a small stand selling lemonade would attract a satisfactory crowd.

Market Pokémon goods

Pokémon goods have always brought in a lot of revenue, but are likely to bring in even more now that the whole craze has resurfaced again. Maybe you’re an artist and would like to sell some fanart, or perhaps design some T-shirts. There are numerous things you could do to use the game as a marketing opportunity.

An attractive or unique product would be high in demand now that Pokémon has once again become the most talked about trend. There are even items up for sale, taking advantage of the resurfaced craze, that have no relation to Pokémon, such as this bike on Craigslist that’s great for Pokémon GO hunting.

So, can you really make a living playing Pokémon? Well, it depends. Not the answer you wanted to hear, but a lot of your success depends on how long the newfound Pokémon fever lasts. The game hasn’t even been released in Malaysia yet so it is still uncertain how much Malaysians would be willing to pay for hacked accounts or Pokédrivers. We’ve also yet to touch on the questionable legality of most of these gigs. Whether or not you’d be successful in making a career out of Pokémon is a pretty murky area, but that shouldn’t stop you from trying. Perhaps quitting your job right now to become a Pokémon hunter is a little too ambitious, but working on building your career in your free time might bring unexpected returns.

Pokémon Go : Gotta CASH Em’ All!

Pokémon Go : Gotta CASH Em’ All!

We understand your need to fund your Pokémon adventure, but parents are hard to convince. We believe a little effort with a dire passion may lead to some profit, and you might as well catch em’ all. Listed below are by far the most realistic Pokémon based cash cows.

1. Record

Youtube is an incredible platform for any fan of any kind. It is the third most visited website and second largest search engine in the world. YouTubers can get paid via ads revenue, or by a network. The latter requires a certain amount of subscribers. Check out Patreon, a service that is often used by YouTubers and Twitch for live streaming. Your personality or knowledge will determine your choice of format. If you have a deep knowledge of the game or Pokémon in general, consider doing guides or walkthroughs. Add a good sense of humor to your videos, and do a “Let’s Play” series, which is a play along experience. You need a decent computer to edit your videos, and a good microphone to record your voice. You may also outsource editing works to freelancers.

2. Discuss

Players discuss and share gameplay mechanics or tactics on online forums. You may grab the opportunity to start one of these. Besides giants like Reddit and Stack Exchange, localized sites get a lot of attention as well. If creating a website looks difficult, you may as well take part as a moderator. Moderators are key to ensure smooth discussions. Forum websites gain revenue through ads or sponsorships.

3. Write

If writing is your thing, why not about Pokémon Go. This will work well with all the methods above. There are many article banks these days which you can submit your articles to. Make sure you understand the terms and agreements. An alternative to article banks is a personal blog. Services like WordPress and Squarespace offers great service to get you started. A good improvement is to have a professional editor to edit your articles. Articles can range from 250 words up to a few pages. If permitted, you may insert ads to gain revenues.

4. Trade

Rare Pokémon merchandise can fetch a hefty sum these days. Trading cards and old game cartridges are trending now since the release of Pokémon Go. You may buy these merchandises online and resell to closer buyers, for a small profit. Make sure items are genuine, and always be aware of the quality of the product when purchasing. , and you can start an online store with services such as Etsy. Social media platforms are also great to promote your Pokémon products.

5. Drive

Pokémon Go emphasizes explorations and adventures. But, this can take an ample of players time. You may offer a localized service to drive around players and lead them to Pokéstops or PokéGyms. Include extras like snacks, portable chargers, and a good WiFi connection. Pokémon Go attracts young adults and children, so cater both groups. Parents would be glad to know their children have a chaperone while they are busy hunting for Pokémon. Appear reliable and stay professional. But, check with local authorities about legal issues. In some countries, you may need to get a passenger driver’s license.

 

John Hanke: Creator of Pokémon GO

John Hanke: Creator of Pokémon GO

John Hanke: Creator of Pokémon GO

18

JULY, 2016

By JiaHer Teoh

For now, Pokémon GO is still a no go in Malaysia. An official statement from fortyseven.com – a Niantic representative – stated that “The team is currently heads down working on the game. We do not have any announced plans for countries beyond New Zealand, Australia, US and Germany at the moment.

Fret not, for there is still hope that you’ll be able to catch ‘em all soon. Word on the street suggests that Pokémon Go aims to be released worldwide by the end of the month.

Meanwhile, here’s a little background on John Hanke – the creator of Pokémon Go, the first MMO (Meridian 59) and Google Maps.

Cover of the PC game – Meridian 59

Back in 1996, John Hanke worked on what is often credited as the first graphical MMORPG – Meridian 59. Like augmented reality, massive multiplayer online games hadn’t really taken off and developers were still trying to understand what worked and what didn’t. Multi-User Dungeons (MUDs), an early foray into massive multiplayer gaming often constrained itself to being text-based. This breakthrough was built upon by many others, with World Of Warcraft (WOW) dominating today’s market.

Despite the exponential adoption of Pokémon GO, this might only be a spark in the explosion of augmented reality games in the near future.

In fact, Pokémon Go is only the second game to have been released by Niantic Labs. Their first, Ingress, was released in 2013 and garnered over 7 million players.

The functionalities of Ingress and Pokémon GO are similar, but Pokémon GO has a nostalgic allure for the 20 – 30 year olds who are thrown back to their Gameboy and Nintendo DS days.

Another similarity you might take for granted is that between the map on these two games and Google Maps. One might imagine that the similarity ends with the fact that an augmented reality game of this scale would of course have some working relationship with Google but the truth is much more.

Promotional graphic on the Ingress official website

© Niantic Inc.

© Niantic Inc.

Niantic Labs is formerly owned by Google and is still invested in by them. And it doesn’t end there. Founder and CEO of Niantic Labs, John Hanke, was also the founder and CEO of Keyhole, which was acquired by Google and had its flagship product renamed and developed into what we know as Google Earth. Google Maps, and Google Street View.

Getting to know PM2.5

Getting to know PM2.5

What is PM?

PM is short for “particulate matter”. It refers to particles found in the air, including dust, dirt, soot, smoke, and liquid droplets. Particles can be suspended in the air for long periods of time. Many man-made and natural sources emit PM directly or emit other pollutants that react in the atmosphere to form PM. These solid and liquid particles come in a wide range of sizes. Some particles are large or dark enough to be seen – like soot or smoke. Others are so small that individually, they can only be detected with an electron microscope.

What is the difference between PM2.5 and PM10?

PM is usually measured in two size ranges: PM10 and PM2.5.
PM10 refers to particles with diameters that are less than or equal to 10 microns in size (a micron, or micrometer, is one-millionth of a meter), or about 1/7 the diameter of a human hair.

PM2.5, also called “fine particulates,” consists of particles with diameters that are less than or equal to 2.5 microns in size. That’s about 1/30 the diameter of a human hair. PM2.5 is a more serious health concern than PM10, since smaller particles can travel more deeply into our lungs and affect your health.

Where does PM2.5 come from?

Fine particles are produced from all types of combustion, including motor vehicles, power plants, residential wood burning, forest fires, agricultural burning, volcanic eruptions, dust storms and some industrial processes. Some are emitted directly into the air, while others are formed when gases and particles interact with one another in the atmosphere.

Why is it so dangerous?

The health effects of PM10 and PM2.5 are well documented. Over-exposure to PM increases the risk of heart and lung illnesses and can reduce an individual’s lifespan. Alarmingly, there is no evidence of a safe level of exposure or a threshold below which no adverse health effects occur.

Numerous studies have linked long-term particle pollution, especially PM2.5, with significant health problems including:

  • Increased respiratory symptoms, e.g. irritation of the airways, coughing or difficulty breathing
  • Decreased lung function
  • Aggravated asthma
  • Development of chronic respiratory disease in children
  • Development of chronic bronchitis or chronic obstructive lung disease
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Nonfatal heart attacks

Premature death in people with heart or lung disease, including death from lung cancer Short-term exposure to particles (hours or days) can:

  • Aggravate lung disease causing asthma attacks and acute bronchitis
  • Increase susceptibility to respiratory infections
  • Cause heart attacks and arrhythmias in people with heart disease

Even if you are healthy, you may experience temporary symptoms, such as:

  • Irritation of the eyes, nose and throat
  • Coughing
  • Chest tightness
  • Shortness of breath

How can I find out about PM2.5 level in my community?

Unfortunately, unlike neighbouring Singapore and even Indonesia, Malaysia does not publish any PM2.5 data.

While the Department of Environment (DOE) Malaysia releases its Air Pollutant Index (API) readings taken at 52 stations hourly, the air pollutants measured do not include PM2.5. The five pollutants currently measured are ozone (O3), carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen dioxide (NO2), sulphur dioxide (SO2) and PM10. The pollutant with the highest concentration is then taken as the API reading and this is usually PM10.

The DOE in its website said it is in the midst of finalising the new Malaysian Air Quality Guidelines to include the standard limit of PM2.5 in the ambient air based on World Health Organisation’s (WHO) 2006 guidelines. “Subsequently, we will need to come up with a PM2.5 Air Quality Index System and data integration with the existing system in our Environmental Data Centre (EDC) prior to including it in our API calculation.” Adoption is likely to happen by end-2016.

How does our API readings compare with, say Singapore?

Singapore uses the PSI (Pollutant Standards Index) which measures what Malaysia’s API does, plus PM2.5. Both Malaysia’s API and Singapore’s PSI are standards developed for measuring pollutants by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) and have similar categories — a reading of 0-50 is considered ‘good’, 51- 100 ‘moderate’, 101-200 ‘unhealthy’, 201-300 ‘very unhealthy’. A reading above 300 is ‘hazardous’. But a straightforward comparison between them will be like comparing apples to oranges.

Reading for API
0 – 50 Good
51 – 100 Moderate
101 – 200 Unhealthy
201 – 300 Very Unhealthy
Above 300 hazardous

As Malaysia does not measure PM2.5, its API shows substantially lower readings. This creates a more positive but ultimately illusory picture of the state of our nation’s air quality.

Blueair Aware

Be Aware of Indoor Air

What can I do to reduce exposure to PM2.5 when the haze is bad?

  • Stay indoors in a room or building with filtered air. PM can get indoors, so consider getting an effective air purifier. Air cleaners that remove particles include high-efficiency mechanical filters and electronic air cleaners, such as electrostatic precipitators
  • Keep your activity levels low. Avoid activities that make you breathe faster or more deeply to reduce the amount of particle pollution you inhale into your lungs.
  • Don’t add to the air pollution. Avoid using anything that burns, e.g. cigarettes, candles, incense.
  • Keep the indoor environment clean but don’t vacuum unless your vacuum cleaner has high-efficiency particulate arrestance (HEPA) filters. Otherwise, you will just stir up the particles already inside your home. Wet mopping can help reduce dust.
  • Don’t rely on dust masks for protection. Paper “comfort” or “dust” masks are designed to trap large particles, such as sawdust. These masks will not protect your lungs from small particles such as PM2.5. Scarves or bandanas won’t help either. Disposable respirators known as N-95 or P-100 respirators will help if you have to be outdoors for a period of time. It’s important that you wear the respirator correctly, however.

Blueair’s HEPASilentTM filtration process captures 99.97% of airborne particles down to 0.1 micron in size

Blueair’s HEPASilentTM filtration process captures 99.97% of airborne particles down to 0.1 micron in size

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How Ash in Pokémon is secretly the creator himself

How Ash in Pokémon is secretly the creator himself

Pokémon has once again become a worldwide sensation, and the franchise may actually deserve all the attention it gets, wrapping a massive 20 years success. In the midst of the late 90’s, Nintendo launched the first two Pokémon games, Red and Blue, designed almost entirely by Satoshi Tajiri, who founded Game Freak, a small team that published gaming magazines at that time. Funded by Nintendo after pitching the idea, Satoshi went to create one of the most iconic franchises in modern entertainment.

Hardest decision.. ever. The good ol’ starters. Charmander remains my favourite.

What makes Pokémon so immense?

The man himself.

The whole franchise was inspired based on Satoshi himself. The small pixelated character known as Red in the earlier games, was a younger version of Satoshi. As you navigate him out of Pallet Town into the wildness of Kanto, accompanied by a seamless background tune, you begin to experience the vastness of his childhood imaginations. The name Pokémon was derived from “Pocket Monsters” because it was introduced for the Gameboy, a device which you carry in your pocket. However, Satoshi may have more reasons.

As a child, Satoshi was carefree. He spent most of his time outside, collecting insects and small creatures. He was always excited to see different insects in other parts of the town. He would walk to the ponds and find water insects, he would pick up sticks to inspect them, and find insects in the there. He would sometimes catch them, and place them in small capsules, or boxes, which later he carries around in his pocket. Satoshi successfully embedded the same element of discovery into the game. In the games, you would only encounter Pokémons in tall grass, ponds, or caves and just like insects, sometimes you run into a swarm. Apart from the main character, you will also meet a fellow trainer, a Bug Catcher by the name of Tajiri. As a child, Satoshi was nicknamed “Dr. Bug”.

Satoshi Tajiri

Satoshi Tajiri

Pokémon Creator, CEO of Game Freak

Just like Pokémons, the characters evolved as well. 

Remember the bug catchers? 

Home sweet home...

Satoshi grew up in Machida, which makes the greater part Tokyo metropolis, and located in the central Kanto region of Japan. In the first generation of Pokémon games, you will begin in a region which most players thought was called Indigo, due to the Indigo Plateau. However, Nintendo later confirmed that the region was called Kanto. The Kanto region in the game is not only identical to the actual Kanto region in Japan by name, but also geographically almost entirely. You begin in Pallet Town, which was a model of Shimoda City  (Satoshi’s hometown). As you venture out, you will come to Celadon, a bustling city which was inspired by Shinjuku, the commercial center of Tokyo. Life was different here, and Satoshi was saddened by the changes his hometown endured, as buildings sprawl up, covering places he used to hunt for insects.

The Kanto region. The game music plays in my head everytime I see it.

Satoshi’s mom was a housewife, and his father worked for Nissan. Growing up, Satoshi had a few disagreements with his father especially about his career choices. His father wanted him to become an electrician, which Satoshi was not at all interested. He also suffers from Asperger’s syndrome, that fans speculate might have caused both his hobby for collecting bugs and his distance from his father. In the games, you will start at home, and you only see Mom, and the father was not around. You will later defeat the father in a high ranking Pokémon tournament.

There are no proper time reality in the games, as Red doesn’t need to sleep, eat or rest. Satoshi is famously known for sleeping for 12 hours and work the next 24 hours. He is used to the idea of a continuous process, and has been working that way until now.  

Just like dad? 

Shimoda City a.k.a Pallet Town, where Satoshi grew up. 

Gotta catch 'em all!

However, Red was not the name we all remember. The anime series introduced Ash Ketchum, and his buddy Pokémon, Pikachu, a story of his journey to become a Pokémon Master.

The name Ash was derived from the Japanese version of the character, also named as Satoshi. Ketchum was simply taken from the tagline of the show, “Gotta Catch ‘Em All!”.

Shigeru Miyamoto

Shigeru Miyamoto

Creator of Super Mario Bros, Nintendo

Seen together rivals, Satoshi a.k.a Ash and Shigeru a.k.a Gary 

Ash’s rival in the series was named Gary, which was derived from Shigeru, a reference to Shigeru Miyamoto, who designed Super Mario Bros (1985), and was a mentor to Satoshi. Satoshi admires Shigeru, which he admits that he will never be as good as him.

The confession.

There might be a be a lot more of his childhood elements in Pokemon games and animes, but Satoshi was not a big fan of the spotlight. In an interview with Time magazine in 1999, Satoshi admitted that the character was himself as a kid.

TIME: “The main human guy is named Satoshi. That’s your name. Is he your alter ego?”

Tajiri: “Basically, he’s me when I was a kid.”

The Pokémon universe is riddled with lores that date as far as a few thousand years before the story of Red unfolds. There still many mysteries that surrounds certain aspects of Pokémon, and fans have been generously introducing theories to explain many, one includes a theory that Ash might be in a coma the whole time the anime series took place!

Satoshi Tajiri is currently the CEO of Game Freak and still works with the Pokémon franchise.

“Can you catch 'em all?”

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