Pokémon GO is officially in Canada, and we’re excited to catch them all! The long-running Nintendo series added the augmented reality mobile game earlier in July 2016, and already has more daily users than Twitter and more installs than Tinder!
When you’re out searching for that elusive Lapras or battling for a gym, take note – skills that make you a strong Pokémon trainer can make you a stronger improviser! Here are some of the similarities.
Learn to build a strong team
A good Pokémon GO team is diverse, with a various types that balance strengths and weaknesses. Same for an improv team. Mix up your cast with big character players, strong storytellers, and most importantly people you enjoy spending time with. Whether that means Team Valor, Mystic or Instinct is up to you.
Level up and evolve
Your avatar in Pokémon GO levels up as you explore your city. Everything from checking in at a Pokéstop to catching the ubiquitous Drowzee gains you EXP, which in turn helps you encounter higher-level Pokémon and gain progress rewards.
Leveling up as an improviser is important too. Enroll in classes and workshops to expand your skills. Learn different games to play onstage. And speaking of which…
Explore far and wide
Pokémon GO’s raison d’être is getting players to explore their hometowns and cities where they live, and even around the globe to catch them all. It’s a great way to see new sights while leveling up, and the same holds true for improv.
Every city is filled with great comedy schools and live shows to enjoy. If you’re a newer performer, we recommend training at different schools, and watching as much comedy as you can. If your schedule and budget allows, fly out to Chicago or LA to train with some of the world’s best. And when you get a chance, jump onstage and test your chops. Unlike Pokémon Gyms, we promise almost no KOs.
Join the community
Pokémon GO doesn’t have to be a solitary adventure. You can make friends with other players by placing a Lure at a PokéStop, or by Instagramming your favourite catch. Conversations are also easy to start when everyone is searching for that rare Pokémon (ie: Vaporeon stampede in Central Park).
Improv is also more fun when you become part of the community. Volunteer at your city’s improv festival. Introduce yourself to the audience after your show. Be an ambassador for the thing you love and more people will be drawn to it.
Remember to have fun
Most of all, it’s important to remember that Pokémon GO and improv is meant to be fun. If you need to take a break to recharge your batteries, do it. Pikachu and friends will be there when you’re ready to return.
PS: There’s lots of Pokéstops on Commercial Drive near Cafe Deux Soleils. Check them out, then stick around for Hot Improv Tuesdays each week at 8 pm!