Niantic CEO John Hanke promises that the Pokemon GO developer will take steps to eliminate Gym poaching from the game, hopefully alleviating one of its major issues.
During the Pokémon GO panel at San Diego Comic-Con 2016, Niantic CEO John Hanke had a lot he wanted to address, from planned improvements to the game to its development from proof of concept to finished product. However, Hanke also didn’t want to leave the Pokémon GO players out in the cold, and therefore addressed some of their questions and concerned as part of a Q&A session.
While we’ve covered some of Hanke’s comments previously, like the addition of new Pokémon generations to the game and confirmation that there are still some Easter Eggs left in the game, there is one issue left uncovered: gym poaching. Gym poaching is something that Hanke seemed relatively unaware of, or at least he appeared not to be familiar with the act, but once the problem was brought to his attention, the Niantic CEO promised to introduce ways to combat the problem.
Pokémon GO gym poaching, for those who might not be familiar, is the act of occupying a gym shortly after another player defeats the resident gym leader. In essence, a player waits until the gym turns neutral, and then quickly places his or her Pokémon in the gym before anyone else, even the player who actually took down the gym.
Although Hanke would not say how Niantic plans to combat gym poaching in Pokémon GO, there seem to be some easy solutions. Offering conquering players the chance to place their Pokémon first would be a great start, and would at least guarantee that the player who made their effort reaps the reward. There’s nothing worse then traveling to a local gym to take out its group of Pokémon as a member of one team, only to have that same team retake up residence after defeat.
Even something as simple as a cool down for each defeated gym, whereby the losing team could not reclaim the location, could alleviate some of the problems that exist with poaching. Obviously poaching is still going to be a problem if the servers act up, but once they hit peak stability one of the above-mentioned solutions could help.
For now, though, the focus is on achieving that server stability and rolling the game out to every country in the world. Only then will the real test begin for Pokémon GO, and presumably a lot of the fun will start. It’s only once Niantic is confident that its product works correctly that players might see things like Legendary Pokémon releases at special events and new features like Pokecenters.