The latest update to Pokémon Go on iOS and Android has removed the map from Pokémon stats screens, a feature designed to remind players where it was caught. This comes mere days after developer Niantic blocked third-party Pokémon tracking sites while at the same time downgrading their own radar built into the game.
Frustration is growing online too as the Pokémon Go app rating on the Apple App Store slid down to one-and-a-half stars earlier today. The Google Play Store rating sits at 3.9 out of 5, but unlike on the App Store it isn’t restarted with every new app update.
If you’re there with the community, they’ll be there for you when things go south. Bugs can be fixed, but regaining people’s faith is hard.
– Former Niantic community manager Brian Rose on Twitter (@brianrose)
One positive about the new update is the smoother scrolling between Pokémon when viewing their stats screens, but this was problem that appeared after the last update.
In related news, Pokewhere announced on Twitter that their tracking up will once again “work everywhere once the update is out” but didn’t give a solid timeline of when that would be. They also announced a “pro” version of their app is coming, but again didn’t divulge any further details.
One alternative for Android users is PokeDetector, though it’s far more limited than it’s competitors only showing you Pokémon within 70m of your present location, but can be customized to send you notifications about Pokémon when not playing the game.
PokeDetector was pulled off Google Play Store and must now be side loaded to work. It also requires a Google account linked to Pokemon Go to function so the developers highly recommend you use a “backup account” in case of any issues with Niantic down the line.
Editorial comment: I don’t want to be down on Pokémon Go. It’s a great game and I write all this content because I see the potential it has. Not just now, but way into the future. So here’s hoping this is just a rough patch and Pokémon Go gets back on its feet soon.
On a side note, I have no vested interest in these radar sites working again, but I will say that part of the fun of the old Pokémon games was working collaboratively with players both on and offline to uncover the games secrets. To my mind radar apps are no more intrusive than strategy guides, and are just as easy to ignore.
Not everyone will agree with me, and that’s fine. But nobody can deny Niantic could have handled this entire first month of Pokémon Go a lot better.