LIBERTY, Ohio (WYTV) – Pokemon Go, an interactive GPS game for cell phones, is the latest fad of 2016. The game leads players to different places around their city, but it might be leading some people into areas that aren’t so safe.
Data published by research website SimilarWeb says the mobile game is about to surpass Twitter in daily active users on Androids, and it’s not even available globally yet.
The Liberty Police Department sent an email to its officers on Monday, saying that several kids showed up at their building over the weekend while playing the game, trying to catch Pokemon in “hot spots.”
In Pokemon Go, the Trumbull County Courthouse is actually a gym where people train their Pokemon.
“All you do, really, is just walk around and collect Pokemon and I don’t even like Pokemon really, but the game is fun,” said Dylan Alders, of Girard.
The GPS interactive game leads people around their town on a virtual map to collect Pokemon and train their characters.
“They have what’s called “points of interest,” so it’s like museums, libraries, landmarks around town. They’ll turn them into Pokestops,” Alders said.
Gamers say they haven’t had much trouble in this area, but three men were arrested in Missouri over the weekend for armed robbery, accused of luring victims through the game to their locations.
Lisa Taylor plays the game with her daughter in Warren and says players just need to be aware of their surroundings. There is even a warning message that appears when the game loads.
“I haven’t personally ran into any place that’s sketchy or anything like that. In fact, there’s been a couple really cool places that I never really knew about that it’s helped me discover about my own city that I grew up in,” she said.
Players also say it’s a great way to get exercise by walking from spot to spot. The game doesn’t let you cheat by driving, and it will take you all over town.
Even so, the Ohio State Highway Patrol warned users to not “catch and drive.”
— Ohio State Patrol (@OSHP) July 11, 2016