The reality game launched in July 2016, and while the craze may have passed its peak, more people are still playing it than you would expect.
Now, a new study from the University of Wisconsin–Madison says that playing Pokémon GO could actually make you happier. Don’t you regret deleting the app now?
The study, which has been published in the journal Media Psychology, found that people who play the game are likely to be more positive, friendly and physically active.
Researchers surveyed 400 people three weeks after the game was launched. Participants were asked questions relating to their emotional and social wellbeing, as well as their levels of physical activity.
Alex James Bonus, a UW-Madison graduate and study participant said public perceptions of the impact of Pokémon GO were often incorrect.
“There was plenty of negative press about distracted people trespassing and running into trees or walking into the street,” Bonus said. “But you also saw people really enjoying it, having a good time together outside.
“There’s this idea that playing games and being on your phone is a negative social experience that detracts from things, but there haven’t been many chances to ask large groups of players about their experiences,” Bonus says.
The researchers found that users felt as though their life was more worthwhile when playing the game. Capturing the Pokémon gave them an avenue to feel confident meeting new people and engaging in exercise. Users also said that Pokémon GO opened up chances to strengthen or even rekindle existent and past relationships. All of these positive experiences the participants said, left them feeling more resilient and with a more positive outlook on life.
Niantic, the company responsible for creating Pokémon GO, claims 65-million users of the game. New updates continue to feature in the game, including recent support for the traditional Chinese language and new Pokémon being added.
So, whether you know traditional Chinese, or are just in need of more time outdoors, Pokémon GO seems to be a good way to achieve it. If you’ve deleted the app, there’s never been a better time to get back into it again. It’s in the science.