If you haven’t run into someone playing Pokemon Go in the last few days, you haven’t been outside.
The popular trading card and Game Boy game has taken a new turn with the release of the IOS and Android app that "lets you see Pokemon through the window of your phone as if they existed in the real world," according to Cnet.com. "Then, you can catch them."
According to Deseret News National, while players use "GPS tracking and location services, the game shows players their actual world through their smartphone screens, enhanced with images of Pokemon and clues on where to find them." Some users have even reported being "sent to church" to find Pokemon.
Many players have posted about the addictive nature of the game. But as we know, "You gotta catch them all."
*Breaks into Area 51*— gaming memes (@GamepIay) July 10, 2016
"Sir, this is government property."
Me: "WHERE IS THE MEWTWO"#PokemonGo
mom i see it again! @ the church!— kirstin™ (@kirstin) July 10, 2016
ok it's this way ill uturn!
no mom wrong church other way uturn uturn!!! drive under 10 mph!#PokemonGO
Me: *Knock Knock*— Harry Potter: Wizards Unite US (@HarryPotterWUUS) July 10, 2016
Person: "Who's there?"
Me: Sorry, but there's a level 200 Squirtle in your house!#PokemonGO
My #PokemonGO strategy guide: Buy a battery case for your phone.— Brian Kibler (@bmkibler) July 10, 2016
At least the game allows homeowners to be sure the economy can’t completely decrease the value of their home.
Some even say that Pokemon Go has created an unlikely match between workout and gaming communities.
#PokemonGo is going to change how people look at gamers.— Harry Potter: Wizards Unite US (@HarryPotterWUUS) July 10, 2016
"Look at the calves on that guy, must be a gamer."
While users and onlookers joke that Pokemon Go has brought people outside again, the new game is not without its concerns.
In Missouri, armed robbers used the app to target Pokemon gamers.
"The robbers appear to have watched the game’s map for a particular player-triggered feature that attracts Pokemon to a specific location for a limited time,” the Washington Post stated.
The Post also noted that many players have reported injuries while "catching" Pokemon. One person even discovered a dead body while on their hunt.
In addition, there have been reports of more dangerous driving conditions due to Pokemon Go, as users may not look up and see an approaching vehicle.
However, those in cars going faster than 20 miles per hour can’t hatch their digital eggs, providing a little failsafe, according to the New York Post.
Proofpoint, a security firm, also discovered "a malicious version of the software," which allows the attacker to gain remote access of the gamer's phone, according to Fortune.com.
All these problems aside, the allure of the game keeps users engaged and on the hunt.
With that in mind, here are a few safety rules for parents to remind their kids about to keep their young (or possibly older) gamers safe while they search for their favorite virtual creatures:
Keep your eyes up and looking forward, (pay attention to your surroundings to avoid injuries)
Be aware of entering private property when chasing Pokemon, especially late at night
Stranger Danger still applies: While entrenched in the game you might drop your guard, but don’t get in car with anyone you don’t know; don’t go into the home of people you don’t know or just met; don’t accept food or liquid from people you don’t know
Don’t give your phone to someone you just met
Don’t approach a car to talk to people who are playing the game
If fellow gamers ask a question, keep your distance (and from there, be as friendly as you want)
Don’t ride a bike, skateboard or anything else while catching Pokemon
Don’t hunt Pokemon and drive
Wear sunblock, bug spray and shoes when out hunting since you may end up staying out longer than you planned