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Pokemon on the Plains! Clint Richardson Tells Us What Catching Pokemon is Like on Auburn’s Campus

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What’s a Pokemon? Where can you find them in Auburn? Clint has the answers.

What is it about people that makes some go out of their way to point out that they don’t know what the latest thing is? "Crazy, I know, but I’ve never watched The Bachelorette." "Soccer’s okay, but how many days." "What’s a Drake?"

I think some people just have to always be talking. And on Twitter, that means they are always tweeting. So if something is happening that would leave them out, instead of putting in the effort to figure it out, or, heaven forbid, just sit it out, they declare...

We get it. You don’t know what Pokemon is and you want us to know that you don’t know. Good for you.

You wanna know what I think of The Bachelorette?

Too bad.

But, oh, for the glorious sincerity of those that truly love something. That’s what you get with Clint Richardson. He runs the Auburn Uniform Database, literally the best dang Auburn uniform database out there. He’s written here on CaM about the latest technology in the Tigers’ shoulder pads. He’s a passionate AU basketball fan and has heart attacks at AU softball games.

And he loves Pokemon.

So, with Pokemon Go on basically everyone’s phone, but most Auburn students off campus for the summer, I thought I’d ask Clint a few questions about his experience so far.

WarRoomEagle: When did you get into Pokemon? How far into Pokemon did you get (video games, cards, TV)?

Clint Richardson: I've been into Pokemon ever since I can remember, probably age 4 or 5, which was 1998-99 when the franchise was released over in North America. My younger brother and I combined to have owned every single main series game since the beginning, with most of the side and spin-off games. I got back into the series hardcore my freshman year at Auburn (2012) and marathoned the entire anime series with my roommate, and continue to watch the new episodes every week. I also recently started reading the manga, which is easily the best medium behind the video games. The story is so much darker and better scripted than the episodic anime.

WRE: Without writing a whole article for me, what is Pokemon Go?

CR: Pokemon GO is a new mobile title from Niantic, a Google spin-off company, and The Pokemon Company that allows so many fans of the series to live out their dreams of traveling their area to search for and catch Pokemon. The augmented reality aspect of the game allows users to have the Pokemon show up in real life with the phone's camera. It never was designed to be a fitness app, but the experience is certainly doing what it can to get gamers, fans, students, and everyone else outside and getting some fresh air.

WRE: What are some important places to visit on Auburn’s campus? Gyms, spots, places with a high Pokemon population?

CR: Pokemon appearance rates is pretty rare, but there's definitely some better areas on campus than others. PokeStops are the big attraction, as they give you items and experience. You can set a "lure module" on these Stops to attract more Pokemon to that area. As for Auburn's campus, the old part of campus is the best - Samford Hall, Foy, Ross, and especially the old koi pond. PokeStops reset in about 5 minutes, so it's a great idea to just walk around Samford Lawn and grab as many Stops as you can. Gyms are also pretty random, placement wise. One of the frat houses is a gym for example. But the best location is the gym at Jordan-Hare, and it's already pretty powerful from what I've seen.

WRE: Any good ones off campus?

CR: I haven't gotten to explore much off campus, but the art museum has a lot of PokeStops and I've heard has some pretty good Pokemon encounters.

WRE: Have you ever had control of a gym? Which one? What's that like?

CR: Unfortunately no. When the game first came out, the gyms were pretty much up for grabs. I was too late to just grab one when it was first released, and haven't been strong enough to fight gyms. I'm hoping to continue to catch some stronger Pokemon before facing off any local gyms.

WRE: I understand there are three teams you can be on, Blue, Red, or Yellow. Which team owns Auburn, or is it still too early to tell?

CR: Team Instinct (yellow) for life! Sadly, I'm in the overall minority in this one...The gym close to my house changed ownership the other day with each team having control at some time during the day. If I had to guess, I'd say Team Mystic (blue) is the most popular, but that's a completely unsupported guess at this point. It will be interesting to see how things change when classes start back up in August.

WRE: What the weirdest place Pokemon Go has taken you?

CR: The art museum right now haha. I've tried to stay on campus and not venture too far, especially with the sad reports of people using the game to rob users.

WRE: I’ve read your more likely to catch water types near water. Any other correlations that you’ve noticed? Maybe flying types near the aerospace building?

CR: I've not really seen these correlations, but it's a natural assumption. I would rather them not do that, as that would require a tremendous amount of traveling for everyone to even catch a few different 'mons.

WRE: What’s it like to be chasing a Pokemon, only to find yourself with a bunch of other friends (or strangers) doing the same thing? What’s the largest group you’ve found yourself in?

CR: It's fantastic. It's honestly one of the funniest and inspiring things I've seen in a long time, just to know you aren't alone in something like this. We joined up with some friends the other night and walked around, about six of us, but we kept running in to other groups around campus. I think maybe 15 or so of us were chasing a Meowth near Mary Martin Hall that night. That same night we saw a few hundred people exploring campus. It's hard not to laugh when you pass another group.

WRE: Only the 151 original pokemon are available in this game. Are you good with that or would you like the entire list to be added at some point?

CR: I like it for now. It's the first time in decades that people are excited to find a Caterpie, Spearow, or Weedle. It's going to be pretty difficult to catch every species as is, so having over 700 Pokemon on the game would be pretty nuts. It would allow for some good variety when walking around, but it might be overload. It's also a good nostalgia trip for all of us that grew up with the original generation of Pokemon.

WRE: What changes do you think this will have the tailgating this fall?

CR: That's a great question. If this game continues to be popular like it is - I think it will - then we might see nomadic tailgate groups just walking around campus, which would be my new favorite gameday tradition!

WRE: You run the excellent Auburn Uniform Database and just got your hands on a ton of old Auburn programs, media guids, and Gloms. I guess you're done with all that now, huh?

CR: Hahaha never! I still have a ton of things to do with the AUD and hope to see that last for a long time. The old programs, media guides, and Glom collection is growing nicely. Collecting many game programs will get tough at some point, but I would do anything to have a near-complete Glomerata collection.

***

A big thanks to Clint for answering my questions. Check out his stuff at the Auburn Uniform Database and definitely take a look at all the old media guides and Gloms he has here. He has a lot, but I’m sure he’ll keep adding to it because he’s gotta catch ‘em all!