There’s a great new reason to return to ‘Pokémon Go’

A large group prepares to take on the legendary Pokémon Kyogre on the Santa Monica Pier. The flyer, handed out by a Pokémon Go enthusiast group, lists its weaknesses.

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A large group prepares to take on the legendary Pokémon Kyogre on the Santa Monica Pier. The flyer, handed out by a Pokémon Go enthusiast group, lists its weaknesses.
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Matt Weinberger/Business Insider

  • Later this week, Pokémon Go will get a big update adding a storyline and daily quests to complete.
  • Completing this quests will give players the chance to catch Mew, the long-lost 151st Pokémon, missing in action since the game launched in July 2016.
  • Pokémon Go might no longer be a fad, but it still has lots and lots of dedicated players.

The fad may be long over, but Pokémon Go still has a strong, committed group of players – myself among them.

So I was extremely excited when, on Monday morning, Pokémon Go developer Niantic announced that the game is getting a big update later this week, bringing quests and a storyline to the game.

And, for those who complete these quests, Niantic is teasing that players will be rewarded with Mew, the long-lost 151st Pokémon, who’s been MIA since the game first came out in the summer of 2016.

The quests will take the form of what appear to be simple challenges: The game might ask you to catch a certain number of Pokémon, or collect a certain number of items. The game will reward you for every completion – and, apparently, bring you closer to a chance to catch Mew.

For long-time players, this adds some much-needed variety to the game, while also fulfilling long-time promises from Niantic to bring in more story elements. For new or returning players, it gives a lot of incentive to stick with Pokémon Go.

And if you’re still wondering if anybody still plays Pokémon Go, please allow me to reassure you that they are.

Over the weekend, Niantic held the third-ever Pokémon Go community day event, where a powered-up version of the fan-favorite Bulbasaur spawned in ridiculously high numbers in parks and other public spaces. My partner and I visited San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, and found that the park was clogged with our fellow players.

A few months back, in January, we visited the Santa Monica Pier, where we found that an extremely dedicated group of players were organizing a huge group for a raid – a high-difficulty battle where players team up against a legendary Pokémon. The organizers had gone so far as to print flyers, showing what types of attacks the boss was weak to.

Sure, those are isolated incidents in high-density urban areas. But it goes to show that while peak Pokémon Go has passed, the game still has a lot of fans. Now, there’s another reason for you to join up, too.