Parent reviews for Pokémon GO

Common Sense says

Exciting, active game marred by privacy and safety issues.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 10+
Based on 57 reviews

Kids say

age 10+
Based on 68 reviews
Adult Written byeditormum75 July 15, 2016

Recommended for a family experience

There are so many positive benefits to this game that I believe they outweigh the issues noted by others. That said, I'm not sending my kids out to play by themselves – we're doing it together, walking the neighbourhood and taking turns to "catch 'em all" and enjoying ourselves. I've found the kids have no trouble figuring out what to do every step of the way with the interface, and there's always online help at the click of Google! Hopefully the server issues will be sorted out after the initial teething problems.

This title contains:

Ease of Play
Adult Written byTiasAllard July 16, 2016

Literally the worst game I've ever played

The game's philosophy of "there are just some places where this game isn't supposed to be fun" is not just irritating, but downright maddening if you happen to both live and work in one of these areas. Rather than encouraging you to get out and walk, you're expected to drive if you just happen to live in one of these "designated no fun zones." No game, free or otherwise, has ever made me this angry in the space of a week.

And even if by some miracle you find a pokemon other than zubat, pidgey, rattata or spearow, you cannot evolve it or power it up without finding dozens or even hundreds more of the same pokemon.

Garbage game made by garbage people who just want to punish some areas for not having played their previous game Ingress enough.

Save your time and don't encourage this piece of crap grindfest of a game.

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Parent of a 9 and 12-year-old Written bymychza July 15, 2016

Has a few glitches, but really fun.

I think if you have privacy concerns you may want to download the app to your own phone and have the account. They are constantly upgrading to make it better so hopefully the glitches which are very frustrating will go away soon.

I let my 10 year old have it on his own but we go out together to parks and places to walk around. When it works, it's great. It motivates the kids to do chores and things so they can go out to parks and catch pokemon while also encouraging them to be outside and see nature. The people we have all meet have been nice and willing to talk when he wants to ask them what level they're on or how they learned the curve ball.

It's a great way to get out and explore your city and meet people and have family time doing an activity that is pretty fun for everyone and free. You don't have to buy anything if you don't want to. I definitely wouldn't let them go play it on their own without supervision.

This title contains:

Ease of Play
Privacy & Safety
Parent of a 14 and 16-year-old Written bykirstint July 15, 2016

Getting Teen Boys Outside

Great app for teen boys who are "gamers" or really like video games as they are at the age when they like to play games online with their friends and instead Pokemon Go gets them outside, meeting up with friends, and learning about new things in your city. One of our boys told me all about the people at a local park who had Memorial Benches. Without this app /game he would have never noticed the memorial benches let alone learn about the people who were memorialized. There are tons of educational components to it. Yes, safety and wise judgment are concerns but if friends are playing together, and parents emphasize safety tips, it is inherently a great scavenger hunt type game. Our family has met so many neighbor's we didn't know simply being outside in the neighborhood in a different way.

This title contains:

Ease of Play
Privacy & Safety
Adult Written byMixyplixl July 15, 2016

Like Pokemon "geocache" - fun with supervision

Lots of fun, just be sure to supervise activity and make sure kids know to walk safely. I love that it gets my kid out and walking, plus learning about landmarks. Note that it is addictive, and you can even play in the car, so you will want to set time limits. Site is hard to get into at first because of popularity. Also, I was unable to set up a child account because the Pokemon site is overwhelmed. Instead I set up an adult account through my email.

This title contains:

Privacy & Safety
Adult Written byReiven July 9, 2019

They hate low SES users

Played this game since it first came out. Loved it until they made this recent update that is incompatible with slightly older than brand new devices. They are descriminating low SES users and forcing new smartphone purchases to enjoy their app. Very disappointing company and does not efficiently discourage driving and playing for younger folks.

This title contains:

Ease of Play
Parent of a 12 and 15-year-old Written byIrene_dsc July 25, 2016

Use common sense and it is a lot of fun

The CommonSense review has a lot of incorrect information. The biggest myth is that you can see where other players are in real time. This is completely false. The only time you see another player's name is if they have a Pokemon at a gym. (I will mention that unlike other Pokemon products, they do not censor names, so I have seen some inappropriate user names). Basically, if you use some common sense, pay attention to your surroundings, and don't go to places you would consider unsafe ordinarily, you should be fine. I only gave it 4 stars since it is still very buggy and crashes or locks up a lot, so it can be annoying at times. But, it has gotten my 12 year old daughter out and walking, which is awesome. Plus, being able to go out and catch Pokemon yourself is pretty cool. Younger kids definitely need to have self control - if you don't trust them to not run off into the street ordinarily, probably you shouldn't let them have your phone and chase Pokemon with it. If you are confused about any of the game mechanics, there are plenty of articles around to help you figure it out. is a great resource for any Pokemon related information, and has an entire section on Pokemon Go statistics. A couple more things - it really doesn't use much data. My weather app uses more data than Pokemon Go! But, it does drain the battery very quickly. The battery saver mode has the screen go dark if you hold the phone down, and it will vibrate if there is a Pokemon nearby. However, it won't let you know about PokeStops or gyms (but you can figure that out easily). Another tip - if you want to play together as a family, choose the same team so you can take over gyms together.

For those who are curious - the origin of the game was from a couple years ago when Google did an April Fools event with Google Maps, where you could find Pokemon all over the world with Google Maps. It was combined with the game Ingress, which was part of Google, and then spun off as Niantic. Ingress had players create portals all over the place - most of those locations became PokeStops and gyms. Nintendo, Google and Niantic all worked together to create Pokemon Go.
Adult Written byPokemongofail July 22, 2021

Pokemon Go steals from your children

BEWARE THEY STEAL FROM YOUR CHILDREN AND DON'T CARE. I've wasted hours running around with the nearly non-existant customer service of Pokemon GO. They either ignore you or make it impossible to have a conversation. My 11 year old child spent all his money ($20) in preparation for a special "raid" and received nothing. After hours spent trying to interact with their customer service there decision basically amounted to, "sucks to be you." Please be careful before you spend your money.

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Adult Written byMR TRAVIS Armani July 13, 2021


I love pokemon go but the raids are getting stupid now people spend money on this game for raid passes and things i just think the game is so greddy i just used 11 balls and got excellent 6 times and still didnt catch the pokemon its a joke if i beat the pomemon i should get it for free let alone having to catch it im raging

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Adult Written bynunyabizzniss July 4, 2021

Still arbitrary

Rules. There are none.

Pokemon type doesn't matter because the game decides whether Team Rocket beats you or not.

Making good throws doesn't matter because the game decides whether you are allowed to catch the pokemon.

Tactics don't matter because the game decides pretty much everything and you can just go bash your head against a steel pole.

Getting really tired of throwing ball after ball after ball after ball after ball after ball after ball at a pokemon and feeding it berry after berry after berry after berry after berry after berry only to watch it run away. Getting really tired of losing battles against Team Rocket because the game just arbitrarily decides that "This time Dark Types aren't weak to fighting types. Why? Screw you that's why." This kind of nonsensical crap has just got t stop. So... in case there's a Niantic rep or IT reading this, please stop cheating your players and abide by at least SOME predictable game mechanics.
Adult Written byPurgatory January 15, 2021

AR mode might be back door to surveille your household.

The AR mode must be switched on now to play with your buddy . So if you or your children are hunkered down at home during the pandemic. This might give unwanted eyes access to your household. One of the parent companies of Niantic is a CIA funded venture capital company.
just think about it please. Other than that bit of intrusiveness . The game is enjoyable and you don't have to pay to win .
Adult Written byBrutalreviews January 4, 2021

Dont bother with it.

Honestly the game has gone downhill a lot. Its hard to find a positive.
In the Beginning the game was great it was rewarding big and proved to be great fun but in recent years (2019 onwards) its lost something.
For one its less attractive your guaranteed to see almost the same pokemons no matter where you are. The in game tasks are drab and less frequent you can see the developers (google related) have since enjoyed the revenue and decided to switch off what its players feel. The in game support is virtually non existent and expect things to go wrong at the worst possible times like after a gym raid battle for a particular pokemon you try to catch it and the game resets costing you a raid pass and denying you the opportunity to catch the pokemon. Or eggs thst you're incubating waiting to hatch one day that dissappear the next. You try to report the bug to pokemon only to be met with a statement boldly telling you you will receive NO FEEDBACK. In short, if you can dont waste putting your money into this you're just going to be disappointed. If there are admin o get the feeling they'd much rather continue doing something ekse than care about your in game experience. If you haven't downloaded the game and are considering doing so, then please dont. If you have already got the game id asvise you to consider a different one. Also word to the wise NIANTIC who are the games developer are affiliated with GOOGLE which in itself isnt a problem, but how they store use AND share your data is.
In my opinion they're very untrustworthy.
Adult Written byJoethecoolhubby January 2, 2021

Weak sauce

Just a joke. Boring.
Find a game that is fun, this isn't that fun game your look forward to playing in your off time.

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Adult Written byKarensAreStupid August 1, 2020

Amazing game

Dont listen to the karens saying its extremely innappropriate ts a good game and is good for people who want to exercise and have fun

This title contains:

Ease of Play
Adult Written byBaummy July 16, 2020

boring as hell don't download

boring as hell R team are way hard to defeat as there pokemon are CP more than you're get to the point boredom and thinking of deleting it

This title contains:

Privacy & Safety
Adult Written byKiddo3p June 29, 2020

This game needs to be fixed!

I do not like the fact that through the LAG of the game during a battle your opponent is able to cause damage to your Pokemon without it even being out of its Pokeball and is able to kill it (lets say team rocket came and challenged me) we both through out a pokemon..but my screen lags just a bit and my guy ends up throwing his pokemon, At a slower rate then the opponent. And the fact that happend makes it so my pokemon dosent even get to attack and is fainted even befor i have a chance to have the lag pick-up on myside to defend myself witch is increasingly frustrating each time it happens which is deterring me from liking this game more. It needs to be fixed i dont think im going to be playing until the next update because of this i have no pokemon left..
Adult Written byRoberto Benitez May 13, 2020

Pokemon go is not a bad game if you use common sense

People keep on talking about haw angry they are that they don,t have cars so they need to walk. are you kidding that is the whole point of the game to go outside.
Adult Written byMobileGamerYT April 12, 2020

Unstable, with a side of cheating

Spoofing is the only way ive found to be able to play this game and have the app function 100%. The Pokemon games attracted a specific type of player, who may or may not break the game with how many exploits they choose to use. Be prepared to stare at people with 3 100% max legendary creatures everytime you start a battle, and do something else till theyre done.
Adult Written byJerryriggin April 6, 2020

Pokemon Go sit on your PC and Spoof location

The game is fun but far too easy to cheat. The whole simulation is worthless, if it can be done for free by some jerk on his PC without moving around. Its bad enough the kids have to fight for gym credits against adults.
They put a child friendly skin on a casino and hide the hooch.
Adult Written byGreeshma February 2, 2020


I have been playing this crap since the initial debut but I keep getting crapped on everytime with the eggs and pokemon stats all the time that I have broken down multiple occassion due to the game while my brother keep getting lucked every time.
Time and dedication is not even on my dictionary anymore. I have given up and unintstalled this stupid junk.