A Review of A Colossal Discovery from aN APAC Trainer's perspective
A Colossal Discovery – Niantic’s latest special research is has concluded. The question everyone has now is, for the first “paid global event” was it worth it?
For 7.99 USD or their local approximate equivalent, players have been given the option to join in and get access to this special research, rewarding them with – among other things – early access to a Regigigas, a Unova Stone, a special pose and an event medal. Players are also given 10 free raid passes to use within the 8-hour play period, which, for some locations, offset the entire cost of the pass. Was it worth it? This is a review of the event from my perspective.
The Fine Print of the Event
Niantic seems to have worded their announcement very clearly – calling it “A Colossal Discovery—a Special Research story event” – as well as hinting at it being an event revolving around Special Research specifically to obtain Regigigas early. After a long 8 hours of being out and about, all that I can conclude, personally, – is that Niantic delivered exactly as they promised. We were “challenged” by a variety of research tasks, and obtained Regigigas as a reward.
So, If Niantic Delivered, Why so
1 hour and 40 minutes after the start of the “event”, it was basically over. Endgame achieved. Regigigas was obtained – as well as an odd pose, and (finally) a Unova stone.
It was underwhelming. Yes, we got what we were promised, but it certainly felt like it could have been a lot more for a paid event. Spawns for ticket holders were the exact same as the spawns for those who did not fork out the money required. While it may have been an event based around Special Research, it did not have the feel of an event at all. It would be extremely unfair to compare this to other ticketed events like a Safari Zone or GO Fest, but for players who are paying for an event, it wouldn’t be a stretch to assume that they would like to experience something different from everyone else – and not just in terms of completion of research.
The research that was given was hardly unique, and it would easily have been done by anyone who was out and about during the event period. Field Research was available, but also needed some assistance from other players. Research like Trade a Pokemon (seemingly for Shuckle), Win a PVP Battle (seemingly for Aerodactyl) was essentially impossible to complete alone, whereas the Win a Raid (research for the extremely elusive Skarmory) essentially limited people to 30 pieces of research completed if they only used their free passes. This also forced some players to dip into their stash of Premium Passes in order to try and obtain a Shiny Skarmory, which is barely spawning in the wild.
My Community’s Interaction (or lack thereof)
Community interaction was also fairly low due to the nature of the event being geared around raiding and completing quests. People were therefore forced to move around, looking for raids, spawns, and field research, rather than group together as a community and enjoy an afternoon out. While there were community meetups, they were largely based on the raids available, and involved a lot of players who did not participate in the event, as opposed to being meetups based off the event. While there were small groups that did meet up, it was largely based off very small groups getting in a car and driving around to different raid locations, which may not be quite a “community” thing.
When $7.99 isn’t $7.99
Another thing to note was cost. Unfortunately, due to exchange rates and global prices, the payoff was not equal to people around the world. A look at global prices as well as the equivalent number of raid passes they could have bought individually clearly outlines a big difference in the benefits gained as far as the bonus daily passes are concerned. Some locations – like the USA and Europe were able to more or less break even given the costs of their passes, but elsewhere, players could have purchased a significantly larger number of raid passes (even more when you consider Coin Bundle and/or Ultra Box pricing)
Now that it’s all said and done
Eventually – we did get what we were promised. However, the result of the event was something that left a bit of an empty feeling in the stomach. No one I talked to locally believed the event was worth what we paid for, and unfortunately, something like that does not lead people to want to participate in future events. Niantic delivered like they said they would. Unfortunately, it felt like could have been a lot better. A lot more than just a “Special Research” event.
While the event was supposed to be about obtaining Regigigas through Research, it certainly felt like Niantic could have made it a far larger “event”, especially with the Colossal Pokemon coming to EX Raids soon. Increased spawns as well as a larger variety of featured Pokemon for ticket holders would have served to make players feel special, and that they were paying for an event which was unique to them, and not just paying to get a Pokemon early. As it is, the only difference between those who bought the ticket and those who abstained was the promised rewards. Gameplay for both groups of players was largely the same, with the only differences being special field research for those who held passes, and, awkwardly, more raids done for those who used their money to buy Premium Passes (in some locations).
As the first event of this kind in the Pokemon GO universe, this event had the opportunity to entice players – to give people a want to look forward to future events like these, as well as a taste of larger events like a Safari Zone or GO Fest – unfortunately, in this writers opinion, it fell well short.