Picture this: You ran into a rare Pokémon, say a Charizard, and the thought of catching it excited you so much that you fed it a Razz Berry and gave your best curve ball using a Great Ball. You’re very certain that you’d catch it because your throw was on point, but just when it was time for you to scream your heart out, Charizard broke free from the Great Ball and “POOF!” it vanished into thin air.
If you have been an avid player of “Pokémon Go” ever since it was launched in the U.S. in July, then there’s a big chance you already experienced seeing a Pokémon escape from a Poké Ball or a Great Ball and quickly exit the scene, leaving a cloud of annoyance behind. And this gameplay feature is what triggered Reddit user valuequest to ask Niantic Labs to throw players a bone, especially those who do excellent curve balls.
“Ran into a wild Wigglytuff, gave it a berry, threw a curved ultra ball, scored an excellent. First throw, it breaks out and runs away. So frustrating, there was literally nothing that could have been done better, valuequest wrote adding that excellent throws should mean that a caught Pokémon could not escape as this would reassure Trainers that the fate of every Pokémon they encounter is in their hands.
Quickly, many Reddit users chimed in and voiced out how the occurrence of having any type of Pokémon run away even when they’ve spent all of their Poké Ball, Great Ball and even Ultra Ball they have with them was really frustrating and disheartening.
“Having a Pokémon run away after 1 ball is the most disheartening feeling. Especially when it's something you don't normally find in your area,” Reddit user FantasticTony wrote.
“At least if they run away after the first ball, you don't deplete your entire inventory of 40 Ultra Balls and 70 Great Balls... I'm talking to you, you stupid low CP Dragonite who ran away from me like a dastardly degenerate. A first ball run-away rips the bandage quickly and lets you move on to the next rage-inducing encounter,” Reddit user dustimo shared.
With the growing concern on how Pokémon could easily run away, many gave their two cents on how to prevent this from happening, with some coming up with theories on what to really do when faced with a Pokémon with a specific Combat Power (CP).
“When the CP is around 400-500, I use a Great Ball with curve ball and a Berry. When the CP is around 200-300, I use a Poké Ball with curve ball and a Berry. I catch them almost always,” Reddit user saltysister wrote.
“One possibility is that Pokémon will run on the next interaction after their timer hits zero regardless of how excellent your throw was, your shiny Ultra Ball, or stuffing them with berries. I haven't tested this out,” Reddit user vuldin opined.
Along with this theories comes a speculation that Pokémon are running away more lately. Could the recent “Pokémon Go” update have altered the gameplay and make it more challenging for players to collect them all?
“I have felt as though Pokémon are running way more again lately. There was a while there where Niantic confirmed that it was happening and then they fixed it. I think that might have been with the grass update, or maybe the one before it. But lately, I've had almost 60 percent of my <300 CP pidgeys, rattatas, and weedles run on me after one or two balls, even with a tiny circle. Just me? I'm level 25, is that it?,” Reddit user gowronatemybaby7 shared.
The latest “Pokémon Go” update — 0.37.0 for Android and 1.7.0 for iOS — added the Buddy Pokémon System, support for Pokémon Go Plus, fixed issues with Eggs and smaller renders of Pokémon in the game, as well as improved the performance reliability of the game when switching networks. Niantic did not state anything that would allude to making it more challenging to catch Pokémon, especially the rare ones.
Meanwhile, BGR reports the latest update may have imprved the spawn rates of rare Pokémon as more and more users are claiming that they are seeing rare Pokémon in their areas more frequently now than how it was before. The site points out that The Pokémon Go Team is unlikely to confirm this, but it’s good that many users are now able to find rare Pokémon.
Do you think Pokémon have become harder to catch with the latest “Pokémon Go” update? Sound off in the comments below.