Another week, another stretch of time where Niantic inexplicably continues to press forward with Pokémon GO’s exclusive “EX” raid system, currently in its third month of beta testing, where it’s the only way for players to acquire Mewtwo in the game.
I’m not sure how many times I have to write the same article, but every new week that goes by, this becomes more and more clear: EX raids are a bad idea. They do nothing but frustrate players, divide the community and they add nothing of value. They create exclusivity in a game that is supposed to be open to everyone, and maybe a (very poor) revenue stream, convincing players to buy raid passes for the chance at getting an invite.
Almost nothing has changed since I last touched on this issue. There are still zero concrete steps that Niantic spells out in the game as to how to secure yourself a raid pass. You might get one for raiding once during the week at a specific gym, or you might get zero after doing forty raids a week.
Things only seem to be getting worse. Reddit is full of threads detailing one EX raid failure after another, citing the failure of enough people to show up to actually complete the thing, either with not enough invites having gone out, or people being unavailable during the hyper-specific times and dates of the raids. This is what I warned about when this was first announced. It’s hard enough to get a group together to beat raids normally, adding another layer of exclusivity on to the process is going to only amplify that problem further, and that’s exactly what they’re seeing here.
I still have yet to see Niantic of anyone make a case as to what EX raids are actually accomplishing. They are literally just raids that are harder to access. That’s it. And if Niantic viewed this as some kind of money-making venture, they’re doing it wrong, as the whales who buy 5-50 passes a week should be auto-guaranteed a shot, in theory. Instead, they’re burning out and getting frustrated and tempted to throw in the towel on the game altogether. And who can blame them?
The solutions to this are again, so easy. Either:
- Lay out extremely specific criteria about how you can secure yourself an EX raid pass, whether that’s raiding at a sponsored stop or five times a week or whatever. Just give players a goal to shoot for that is tangible to hit.
- Better yet, get rid of EX raids altogether because the idea is terrible. Replace them with level 6 raids that appear infrequently, but with much more advance notice, allowing anyone in the area to partake in the given window. Make them difficult, as fighting and catching Mewtwo should be, but open them up to everyone and don’t make people sit around waiting for a raid pass that will probably never come, and possibly not form a group big enough to even take on the challenge.
The fact that we’re still in this position when EX raids have been “tested” for two and a half months now is absurd. It has totally killed any possible hype for Mewtwo, which should have been the most important legendary release of them all, and now it’s about to start bleeding into the release of Gen 3 as well.
I don’t know what Niantic is looking for in order for them to finally admit that EX raids are bad and serve no purpose. I don’t know anyone who has participated in an EX raid that says they love the exclusivity or the randomized pass system. They may enjoy having a Mewtwo if they were lucky enough to catch one, but they would probably feel the same way if they’d gotten it in a standard level 6 raid without all the EX baggage.
Just end this experiment. It failed. Release Mewtwo properly and move on. This is not nearly as complicated as a three-month test is making it out to be.
More Info: www.forbes.com
Categories: Money Matters