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Pokemon Go Is Undoing Some Popular Changes

Big changes are coming to the mobile gaming juggernaut known as "Pokemon Go," and not all of them are being received positively by the community. In a new blog post, Niantic outlined a number of exploration bonuses that are going to be implemented into the game in late July, following the "Pokemon Go Fest" event. The unfortunate part is that, alongside rollout the extra exploration bonuses (which will last until September), Niantic will also begin removing the changes made to the game to make it safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Starting with the United States and New Zealand, Niantic will begin returning the game to its pre-pandemic state, removing the gameplay boosts that were used to help players be safe and still have fun while playing from home. First, Incense, which attracts Pokemon to a specific location, will lose the bonus effectiveness it has received over the last several months. The number and frequency of gifts brought by your Buddy Pokemon is also going to be reduced, lowering the number of Poke Balls players can get without going to PokeStops.

The last and biggest change is the fact that players will have to once again get a bit closer to PokeStops and Gyms in order to reap the rewards. During the pandemic updates, players were able to keep a bit more of a distance from these landmarks and still interact with them.


Pokemon GO removing fan favorite changes

Fans of "Pokemon Go" have not taken this news well, with some of the Reddit community trying to rally the fanbase to tell Niantic to leave the expanded PokeStop and Gym distances in the game. u/nightdrive82 wrote, "This is absolutely a terrible idea. It removes a lot of flexibility in terms of avoiding crowds, unsafe areas, bothering people, etc. it's harmless to keep in."


Some players have argued that only is the increased distance more convenient for all players, it also makes the game more accessible overall. u/GiraffeCubed wrote, "By reducing the distance, you're not just negatively impacting the current state of the game for able-bodied users, but you're also making it impossible for those with ... mobility impacting disorders to spin stops and gyms, and generally interact with the game in the way it was meant to be played."

While Niantic may feel like things have gone back to normal enough for it to comfortably rollback changes made because the pandemic, it seems odd to remove a feature that the entire community enjoys.