Tuesday, August 9, 2016
Pokémon GO update tests brand new “Nearby” and “Sightings” functions
The Pokémon GO community demanded a new tracking system after the “three-steps” function was scrapped due to it being “confusing,” in Niantic’s words. Never fear, though, because a replacement is on the way, and it’s just as confusing as before.
A new update to the game has new “Sightings” and “Nearby” features that are being tested on a small group of players.
Let’s start with Sightings. It still doesn’t allow for easy tracking of the nearby Pokémon, but it does add some grass in the background. Kotaku reports that this new system shrinks the range to only the immediate area, and it removes all duplicates. So, if this works, you’re still going to have to walk mindlessly in a circle to find the Pokémon you want, just a much smaller circle. At least it’s something, and it shows Niantic is working on a compromise, whatever it ultimately might be. Maybe we’ll see new improvements in the future.
Even better than Sightings is “Nearby.” This feature makes sense. The Pokémon will appear with the PokéStop they’re hiding near. You’ll be able to tap the icon and zoom to their location on the map, making it easy to recognize a specific spot and fight that Pokémon. Above is a screenshot with that feature working.
Other fixes from the update address a majority of the bugs that have been plaguing the game recently. The XP bonus now grants the correct amount once again, battery saver mode has been fully repaired for the iOS version, “Nice,” Great,” and “Excellent,” tosses grant the catch bonuses, and the curve ball accuracy has been improved. Just as soon as I finally made the previous one second nature.
It’s coming along, but Pokémon GO still has a long way to go to reach its full potential as a game. We’ll see where this new… grass meters takes us.