This post isn’t for everyone, but if you play PokemonGo (even casually), then this is for you!! I had my hopes way high up for my first experience playing the immersive game at Disney World. And, well … while the experience wasn’t as incredibly amazing as I’d hoped, it was pretty awesome.
The first think you’ll want to note is Pokestops. They are everywhere. Most of the attractions in the Parks are stops. At the resorts, there are a ton. We happened to stay at an All Star this visit, and they were seriously replete with stops. I could reach three of them from my bed. Just before the trip, I’d upgraded my bag to hold 550 items, and I was still constantly finding the bag full.
I didn’t mind because I was quickly emptying my bag of Pokeballs! There are a ton of Pokemon at Disney World, people. It’s an embarrassment of Pokemon. I was a bit disappointed by the variety of Pokemon to be caught … I was hoping for more rare or special ‘mon. But here’s what we found and saw:
Magic Kingdom: Lots of standard ‘mon. The “rarer” ones we saw were Pollywags and Slowbros.
EPCOT: So many Magikarps and Psyducks. In two days at EPCOT, I managed to catch enough Magikarps to evolve one and a half Gyarados (that’s a lot of Magikarp).
Animal Kingdom: We saw Magikarp, Eevee and plenty of Oddish. We also saw Pikachu reliably near Tamu Tamu Refreshments.
Downtown Disney: A ton of Pidgies and Rats, and lots of Magikarp and Psyducks near the water. The rarest thing we saw here (or anywhere on property) was a Jynx.
Resorts: Lots of Pidgies, Rats, Eevees, Paras, Krabby and Jigglypuff. We caught a couple of Growliths at both All Star Resorts and the Contemporary. Eggsecutes, Sythers and Sandshrews came up as Sightings around the resorts a bunch, but I didn’t see any of them on screen.
We also caught tons of ‘mon at Lures, which were set all over the Parks.
What to do with all the Pokemon you catch? Put ‘em in a gym, of course!! The gyms at Disney World turn over super duper fast. It’s overwhelming.
If you’re going to try to take down a gym, prepare to be frustrated. Because there are so many people playing, your newly-won gym is likely to sniped. Seriously. I don’t know if there’s any kind of PokemonGo etiquette in this area, but it happened to me at least three times during the trip: I’d work for a few minutes to take down a gym, and by the time the screen reloaded so that I could put my Pokemon in the gym, someone from another team had already put their ‘mon in there. Dan and I eventually took turns waiting while the other person battled, so we could capture the gym for Team Mystic immediately. After a few hours in the Magic Kingdom, Dan and I also started sniping other people’s empty gyms. Because if you can’t beat ‘em …
Something else that’s annoying: A lot of people put extremely low level ‘mon Into gyms (like the 23 level magikarp who was #2 in a level 3 gym). I don’t know if this is people trolling or if a lot of the people playing at Disney World don’t have higher-level Pokemon, but it is frustrating to have your gym sniped by a low-level magikarp (as in this case).
If you do manage to take over a gym, don’t plan on keeping it. It’s nearly impossible to level up a gym because, as you’re working to make it stronger, other teams are working to tear it down. It’s a mostly losing battle.
Related to this: The amount of people playing and the unreliability of Disney’s network can make gameplay a bit challenging. I tended to have best results playing with wifi turned on, but when the game started slowing down, I found that switching to playing on data worked pretty well. Of course, sometimes, whether I was on wifi or data, my trainer decided to run off into the middle of World Showcase Lagoon. Which is a pretty hilarious sight.
My biggest piece of advice for playing at Disney World? Invest in a few Incubators. Yes, it requires you to put money into the game, but it’s totally worth it! You’ll get a ton of eggs from the Pokestops, and you’ll be walking a lot, so it’s totally worth it. You’ll hatch a small army of Pokemon during your visit.
It was definitely fun to play at Disney World, and if I am still playing the game during my next visit, I’ll load the app and toss some balls. Much like everything else, playing PokemonGo is a lot more fun at Disney World!
Are you playing PokemonGo? Let us know your favorite place to play in the comments below!