Players’ Experience of an Augmented Reality Game, Pokémon Go: Inspirations and Implications for Designing Pervasive Health Gamified Applications

  • Xin TongEmail author
  • Ankit Gupta
  • Diane Gromala
  • Chris D. Shaw
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10291)


Pokémon Go is a mobile Augmented Reality (AR) game that blends gameplay with real-life outdoor physical activity. In this game, players locate, catch and interact with virtual creatures called Pokémon. Initial reports and online players’ statistics suggest that Pokémon Go motivates players to go outside and become more active. This paper describes an online survey we designed and conducted with players from varied locations and different backgrounds. The goal was to gain initial insight about WHY players spend time on this game and WHAT are their primary motivations; WHEN and HOW they play the game; and WHAT potential changes in physical activity Pokémon Go may elicit from players. Free-to-play, location-based AR mobile games like Pokémon Go are likely to become a new design model for gamified applications that promote physical activity. However, our results imply that in order to sustain motivation and physical activity, the core gameplay and mechanics require thoughtful and engaging design. Further long-term research is needed to understand the benefits and concerns of the game.


Augmented reality game Motive Physical activity Play pattern Implications Gamified applications 



We thank all of the players who participated in this research and we thank Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) for funding this study.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Xin Tong
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ankit Gupta
    • 1
  • Diane Gromala
    • 1
  • Chris D. Shaw
    • 1
  1. 1.Simon Fraser UniversitySurreyCanada

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